There was no use finishing that train of thought. The fact was he was her best friend and nothing more. Not that she wanted things to change. She didn't. She loved that they were comfortable with each other and could tell each other everything. He was her rock and if he was anything more than her best friend she'd be lost. He was the guy she bitched to, not about.

"Only if you let me get ice cream with my dessert," she countered back softly, forcing her mind to jump back into the rhythm of their relationship and stay there.

Eric let out a disappointed sigh. "Damn, if only you weren't a little gold digger."

"If only," she mumbled distractedly as she watched Donny finally grow a pair and approach the patient. Of course his willingness to get it over with might have something to do with Tyler standing next to him looking pissed. No doubt he was.

"Adam, you need to wake up and take your pills," Donny said nervously.

"No," Adam said firmly as he rolled over to glare at Donny.

One look at the man that instilled fear in everyone in the house left her a little confused. He was small, smaller than her and thin. Granted she knew that didn't always mean the person was weak, but seriously this guy had a man the size of a football player quaking in his drawers.

Did he have a history with weapons? Fire? Mutilation? It really would have been nice if they'd given them a little heads up, but then again the patient wasn't technically their patient yet and that meant they had no legal rights to his medical records. Apparently they were just here to scare the hell out of him into taking his pills and hope he didn't flip out in the process.

This plan sucked.


"I SAID GO AWAY!" Adam bellowed as he jumped to his feet on his bed and swung at Donny, who thankfully stumbled back in surprise seconds earlier.

"Oh my god!" Donny cried as he ran from the room, leaving the three of them to deal with him.

Great. Just great.

"Relax," Tyler said in a soothing tone.

Adam looked like he was about to say something when his eyes landed on them. He gestured at them wildly as he shifted from foot to foot on his bed. "I'm not going with you!" he screeched.

Without a word they both stepped forward and broke off to flank the officer. Joe moved to Tyler's right, keeping her hands loose by her sides and visible and without looking she knew Eric was doing the same.

They learned long ago that approaching a combative patient with your palms up was a bad idea. Most people probably thought the gesture was placating, but in reality it usually put people on the defensive pretty quickly. In a stressful situation like this one it could be taken as a defensive stance and the last thing any of them wanted at the moment was to make this guy feel like he needed to protect himself.

"Adam?" she said, keeping her tone friendly. "My name's Joe. Do you know why we were called tonight?"

Adam's eyes darted cautiously over the two men. "You're here to take me back to the hospital. I'm not going! I haven't done anything wrong!" he said, shifting again.

She shook her head. "No, we weren't called to transport you."

"You're lying!"

"I promise you that we were not called to transport you tonight. We were actually called because the staff here isn't sure if you've been taking your pills."

His eyes shifted to her quickly before shifting back to Tyler and Eric. "They're lying. I've been taking my pills."

"Did you take them tonight?" Eric asked.

"Yes!" Adam said without any hesitation.

"No, you didn't, Adam," Donny scolded from the doorway, obviously feeling braver with the three of them separating him from Adam. "You refused your pills tonight."

"Shut up!" Adam screamed, taking a threatening step towards Donny. Joe automatically shifted to the right to block the man. "I took my pills!"

"No, you didn't take your pills, Adam, and if you don't take them they're going to-"

"Stop," Joe said firmly, cutting off Donny's threat. She kept her eyes locked on Adam who now looked tensed and ready for an attack. "We're not going to do anything. We were simply asked to come here and see if you've taken your pills."

Adam snorted. "They don't send the police or an ambulance over pills."

"You're right. They shouldn't have called us over this," Eric said, no doubt giving Donny a pointed look.

"Why don't we go downstairs and sit down and talk this through?" Tyler offered.

Adam looked like he was considering it when Donny opened his mouth. "He's not allowed out of his room. He's on room restriction because of the pills," he pointed out.

"I took my pills!" Adam screeched, leaping from the bed to attack Tyler. It took Joe a few seconds to react. She honestly hadn't seen this coming. She'd been prepared to take him to the ground, but for an attack on Donny who couldn't seem to shut the hell up.

"Shit!" Eric snapped as he attempted to pull Adam away from Tyler, but the much smaller man wouldn't give up his hold. He swung, kicked, and bit Tyler while Eric struggled to pull him off.

Joe moved low and grabbed Adam's legs, hugging them close, ignoring the brutal kicks to her ribs and stomach. "Get him down!" she yelled, squeezing Adam's legs together before she dropped her weight to help bring him down, but only managed to anchor his legs against her.

"Oh my God, he's got a gun!" Donny screeched from the hallway.

Her eyes shot to the doorway in time to see Donny running down the hall, shoving patients and staff out of his way while he made a mad dash to safety. The rest of their audience wasn't too far behind.

"Someone call for backup!" Tyler demanded above her. She turned her head and felt her eyes widen as she watched both Tyler and Eric struggle to pull Adam's hands away from Tyler's holstered gun.

"Get out of here, Joe!" Eric yelled as he struggled to take Adam to the ground and away from the gun.

Joe would have rolled her eyes at his over protectiveness if they weren't busy at the moment.

"Let go!" Tyler groaned as he worked at tearing Adam's hands off his gun.

Somehow over the loud grunts and panting she heard the snap of Tyler's gun holster giving.


"Run, Joe!" Eric yelled again, sending her a pleading look as he fought to keep Adam's fingers away from the trigger as he started to pull the gun away from the holster.

She couldn't run and leave him. At that moment she was more afraid of what would happen to Eric if she let go of Adam's legs and ran.

"Get the f**k out of here, Joe!" Eric bellowed.

Tags: R.L. Mathewson EMS Young Adult
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