The Music in the Painting

Chapter Seven

"Ok Walt," said Mac "let’s go, I have someplace else to be."

With that, they got into the gray Plymouth and headed out the drive. 

"Oh bugger!" Mac exclaimed and reached for the car phone, punched channel XJ and asked the operator for the switchboard at Cedars Sinai. When the operator at Cedars answered he said, "I need the ER desk it’s an emergency." Once connected; He asked for Dr. Vermeer.

"She’s with a patient sir," was the reply.

"I am aware of that ma’am, I have pertinent information about the patient that cannot wait. The patient is my grandson and if it helps I am Captain Mackenzie with the Sheriff’s department." 

"I’ll page her sir." came the reply.

There was a pause and then a curt voice said, "This is Doctor Vermeer."

Mac knew she wasn’t best pleased with being interrupted but that would change in a moment.

"Hello Doctor, I am sorry to interrupt but you need to know that patient Mackenzie is intolerant to opioids. Morphine does nothing for his pain and tends to make him act belligerent. He tolerates Darvon and Demerol well." 

Dr. Vermeer had listened patiently; "That is good to know, are you his Doctor?" 

Mac paused and held up three fingers to Walt.  Walt reached over and flipped a toggle switch that made the horn ring work the growler siren. Mac reached above him and flipped down a large sealed beam red light. 

"No ma’am I’m his grandfather, it looks like we’ll be there in about ten minutes. I’ll check in with the ER desk when I arrive. You know, I met your son at the museum, he’s quite a boy."   

"I look forward to meeting you myself, thank you for the call." said the Doctor and hung up.

Hanging up the phone he picked up the microphone for the L.A.P.D. Motorola and said, "sheriff’s forty-one King three to Wilshire bureau."

"Wilshire by" came the reply.

"Please advise your dispatch that Sheriff’s King 3 is rolling code, west on Wilshire en route Cedars."

"Do you require assistance sir?" the Wilshire detective answered back.

"Negative, but thanks."

"Roger sir, we’ll let them know. Thanks for the heads up. Wilshire out KMA"

Walt managed to move through traffic with reasonable speed. The idea of going code 3 was not so much high speed but going just a bit faster than traffic and not waiting for lights to change. Mac watched the upcoming intersections and would say "Clear Right" if it was clear and give a specific warning like "Watch this blue Chevy on the right."  Just as they were passing through San Vicente and Third Street a green Rambler wagon loaded with kids decided to turn left directly in front of them.  Walt had anticipated him and braked well in advance, but let the man have an extra blast from the growler. He liked them better than the new electronic sirens that were taking over.

 An alert motor officer observed the incident and took off in pursuit of the errant driver.

"Whew!" exclaimed Mac, "I don’t envy him. Those L.A. motors have a serious hard-on for failure to yield to emergency traffic. That’s one expensive ticket."

Walt replied, "Hah, by the looks of his wife’s face that’s the least of his troubles."     

Walt pulled into the ER drive and Mac hopped out.

"I’ll park and meet you in the lounge," said Walt.

"See you there," said Mac.

Mac entered the ER and promptly notified the nurse at the intake desk and advised her that Dr. Vermeer would like to know that he was in the lounge. 

"You know Mac I’m single again, interested?"

Mac chuckled and said, "now Donna, do you really want to go up against my Katherine?"

"Oh Hell no! I don’t want none of that!" The large black woman said. I used to work with her and I know what she is capable of, and besides, you know I was just teasin". 

"I’ll tell her you said hello." Mac smiled. 

"You do that, and tell her things just ain’t the same since she ran off and got her medical degree; Dr. McKay indeed."  Her attention shifted to an orderly who was trying to make time with one of the nurses. "Leon!" she said in sort of a loud but threatening whisper.

Mac smiled and headed for the lounge thinking that if Leon didn’t watch his step he’d be back in the geriatric ward on bed pan patrol.

Inside the ER Bobby was introduced to Drew’s mother. "Nice to meet you, ma’am," said Bobby guardedly. 

"You can call me Carol; may I call you Bobby?"

Bobby’s reply was "No ma’am, I mean you can call me Bobby but I can’t call you Carol; my Grandma wouldn’t like it. May I call you Doctor Carol?" 

"Sure," she said, "that would be fine. Let’s get down to business, how’s your head feeling right now?" 

"It hurts a lot, it hurts where I hit it and I have a bad headache," said Bobby directly.

"That’s understandable, you had a pretty hard knock, but Dr. Voss called in and told me what he found so I’ll check your eyes again and do a couple other tests and then we’ll get an X-Ray. Do you have any nausea?" asked the Doctor.

"No Dr. Carol."   

"Then let’s have you take a pill so your head will hurt less." She gave a note to the RN and turned back to Bobby.

She held out her index and forefingers asked Bobby to squeeze them as hard as he could. She took out an instrument and a flashlight and peered into his eyes. "Nothing wrong there, and you have lovely blue eyes". She said. 

"So do you, except they’re green." said Bobby "they’re just like Drew’s." 

"Thank you, Bobby," she said as she smiled at her son.

"Drew honey, would you mind checking the lounge to see if Bobby’s grandfather is there? And if so ask him to join us here."

Drew nodded assent and was promptly off to perform his assignment.

"Bobby, do you speak German?" asked Carol.

"Ja ich spreche Deutsch." replied Bobby.

"Okay, I was a bit concerned that when you first woke you were disoriented, a bit violent and you spoke in German. It’s a bit troubling unless there is an underlying explanation, do you understand?" 

"Well Dr. Carol, I don’t remember the part where I threw the fireman, but Drew and I were speaking German before I hit my head. "

"Really?" said the Doctor "may I ask why?"

"Well," said Bobby "It’s kind of a stupid thing I like to do with new people I want to meet. I speak to them in something other than English to see their reaction. Drew answered back in German and it took him a moment to ask how I knew he spoke the language. Like I say it’s just a goofy thing that I do. I really wanted to meet him after I saw his reaction to my playing." 

"What was he doing that stood out?" she asked.

"He was watching when I played the Bach Cello suite, but when I played Ombra Mai Fu he had his eyes closed and swayed back and forth. I thought he might start singing at any moment," said Bobby.

"I’m sure he would have loved to, that’s one of his favorite songs."

Well let’s get you to X-ray so I can get a picture of your cute little noggin’ and we’ll get you set up in a room so you can get a bit of rest."

The Doctor turned to the RN who handed her two small paper cups. She thanked the RN and turned back to Bobby handing him the cups. "If you’ll swallow this pill and drink the water your head should begin to feel better promptly. The back of your head may be a bit sensitive; you have a sort of blood blister back there but no actual cuts so no shaving and no stitches." 

Bobby eyed the pill, "What drug is this? I have a bad time with some pain drugs." 

"It’s called Darvon and your Grandfather called and told me about your sensitivity to opiates. This drug is synthetic and apparently, you’ve had it before." Carol stated.

With that, Bobby downed the pill and the water as Drew and his Grandfather entered the exam station.

"Dr. Vermeer I presume."

"Well," said Carol a bit startled by the size of the man addressing her. "That’s refreshing; most men think I’m an RN or something. But please, call me Carol."

 A pleasure to meet you Carol, My name’s Mac."

"He’s the Captain from the museum I was telling you about Mom," said Drew.

"Your son is very good in a crisis Carol, I’m told he did the preliminary exam himself and never left Bobby’s side except to let the other Doctor in to have a look," Mac said.

Carol smiled and said "He spends a lot of time here with medical people. He’s picked up quite a bit. I’m very glad to hear he’s willing to step in when needed."

Drew’s ears were crimson when he said, "I just did what you taught me to do." 

Mac stepped in and said, "that’s the sign of a promising young man. Thank you for doing it."

"Thank you sir and you’re welcome," said Drew.

 "How’s your headache now Bobby?" inquired Carol.

 "Much better, thank you, Doctor Carol, Can I be untied now? I promise I won’t run off or start any trouble."

"Oh I think we can do that since you promise to be good," Carol answered. 

"I didn’t say that I would be good, I just promised not to start trouble or run off." Bobby grinned.

"Well you’re obviously feeling better, let me get these straps undone and the orderly will take you to Radiology." grinning right back at him.

"I’ll go along with him," said Drew, "and make sure he gets to his room alright Mom; is that okay with you?"

"Sure Hon, that’s fine. Thank you."

"Grampa, can you take care of this for me?" Bobby held up his pocket watch.

"I would be happy to." Mac unhooked the fob from Bobby’s belt loop and put the watch in his jacket pocket. "I’ll put it on your dresser." He bent down and kissed his Grandson on the forehead.

The orderly pushed the gurney out of the exam station and off towards X-ray.

"Captain Mackenzie?" said Carol "Do you have a moment to talk?" 

"Certainly Doctor, what would you like to discuss?"

"Well, it’s just that it seems I should know you but I can’t put it together."

"That’s understandable; we have a mutual acquaintance In Dr. Katherine McKay."

"Oh? How do you know Katey?

"I married her." Smiled Mac

"Oh my goodness! You’re that Mac; I should have picked up on that."

"You might not remember under the circumstances, but I was the one who brought you the news of your Husband’s death; I’m sorry to say."

"I don’t remember much from that day," said Carol after a pause.

"Thank you very much for seeing to my grandson. He’s very important to me."

"You’re very welcome. Well, I better get back at it; I have another assessment to do. I’ll be checking in on Bobby once he’s in a bed. They should be less than an hour in Radiology."

"Perhaps we’ll see you there."

"Mac? I have one more question. Did Bobby really throw a full-grown fireman ass over teakettle?"

"Yes, I’m afraid he did. No harm was done, save his pride." Mac smirked.