This is all mine except the "What's Up Doc" segment.
Margaret stares in horror at the letter she finds in her hand. A married General and former lover of hers is coming to visit and thinks he can rekindle something from almost ten years ago during the Second World War. Upset, the nurse turns on her heels to make a call into ICORP. Her only mistake is turning directly and gracelessly into the arms of a certain black haired Chief Surgeon.
"Well, hello, Margaret. What a nice surprise," Hawkeye flirts. He smirks at her scowl.
"You creep!" She exclaims before stomping off. Treating wounded that morning, Margaret soon comes up with a plan to ignore the general coming in. As long as no one knows who her former flame is, she will be fine. However, everyone is aware once Colonel Potter announces General Klemson's visit to both Margaret and the head surgeons in his office after surgery.
"Do you know him, Margaret?" Potter asks, "I was hoping he could get a tour of the place."
Shaking her head, Margaret lies, "I barely know him."
"Oh well! I'll ask Klinger. Have a nice lunch you three. The General arrives at 1800."
Hawkeye and B.J. happily exit the office as Margaret and Charles follow behind. Now that the Captains and other Major know about General Klemson, the head nurse knows she will not be able to ignore him. Unable to form an actual plan due to triage, Margaret comes out of surgery to find a jeep pulling up. Realizing she stands in the way of her former lover, Margaret greets him before seeing a certain dark haired surgeon and calling him over.
"Hawkeye! General, this is my boyfriend, Hawkeye Pierce. Hawkeye, this is General Roger Klemson."
"Nice to meet you," Hawkeye greets with an easy smile even if he is baffled by what transpires. However, always eager to crack a joke, the surgeon asks, "How long have you known Marge?"
"A little over ten years. You?" General Klemson remarks unaware of the side eye Margaret gives Hawkeye at calling her Marge.
"Met here almost two years ago," Hawkeye comments. With a grin he adds, "You could say it was fate."
Surprised by his actions, the Chief Surgeon notices himself instinctively put his arm around his friend as the new general tries to charm her before Klinger comes by separating the friends. Their accidental affair in the abandoned hut leaves both Hawkeye and Margaret a little wary of the other. However Hawkeye needs to know what her charade is, especially if they are supposedly a couple.
"Margaret, what was that?" Hawkeye questions as he follows his friend's line of sight once Klinger leads the general away on a tour. Dismissing the implication that Hawkeye is not wrong about, Margaret answers nonchalantly, "General Klemson."
"What not who," Hawkeye states wondering what Margaret is hiding. She looks around the compound before motioning the surgeon to follow her to her tent. Once inside Margaret lets the door shut before speaking freely.
"Roger, General Klemson, was an old flame of mine during the war. It began and ended during my stint in a MASH in France," she remarks bitterly causing Hawkeye to wordlessly plead for a better answer. Margaret hands Hawkeye her letter and continues, "One of the nurses he was with got pregnant, and he had to marry her. I left two weeks later for another unit. He thinks he can pick up like old times, but I'm not that person!"
"So, you decided to pretend I was your boyfriend so he would leave you alone?" Hawkeye asks as he digests the information. Margaret nods. Reading through the letter one more time, Hawkeye begins to understand why she dislikes his wilder ways. He soon realizes that she may sleep with a lot of men, but does not play the field like he does. Still confused due to her disliking his womanizing, Hawkeye soon questions why she picks him.
"Why did you pick me?" Hawkeye reiterates, "From what I can tell, I'm no better than Klemson over there."
Margaret shakes her head. She will not tell him that he is her first choice in this ruse. He may be like Klemson in his womanizing, but unlike General Klemson, Hawkeye has some scruples of morality and is willing to help others even after their affair. Instead of telling her friend this, Margaret settles for a half truth.
"I can't ask anyone else here. B.J. is married, and Charles is–"
"Charles?" Hawkeye answers when he notices his friend failing to come up with an apt description. He forgoes teasing her tonight wanting to put his best foot forward. For all her talk, Hawkeye knows Margaret is a little insecure, especially after Donald's cheating on her. He almost turns to leave, but asks, "How long do you want to keep this up?"
Margaret wants to say until the war ends, but replies, "Just until Klemson is gone. Would you mind not telling anyone except maybe B.J. about this? I'd rather the whole camp treat us normally."
"Until they can't?" Hawkeye remarks causing a hint of a smile to grace his friend's lips as she repeats, "Until they can't."
Nodding, the head surgeon bids his pretend girlfriend a good-bye before walking toward The Swamp. He figures they will see each other during dinner, but decides to tell B.J. who can divert suspicion elsewhere. However, entering his tent, Hawkeye can see Charles half asleep in the corner. With a sigh, Hawkeye just manages to tell his friend before they enter the Mess Tent, "Whatever you see between me and Margaret tonight is a ruse. Just divert questioning, okay?"
Ever the loyal friend, B.J. agrees, but is rather curious for the full story the rest of the night.
"Did you notice the Major and the Captain sitting awfully close there?" Klinger asks B.J. as they sit in the Officer's Club after a grueling surgery session the next day. B.J. looks over at his friends before smirking and interrupting their discussion.
"How are we tonight?" B.J. questions as he sits beside his friends still unsure what they are doing. Asking for an explaination, he notices the chief surgeon and head nurse share a glance before agreeing to tell him.
"See the new general? Thinks he can see Margaret after ten years and date her again," Hawkeye remarks. Margaret merely studies her drink knowing B.J. will have to have the full story eventually.
"So, you're acting as body guard," B.J. remarks. His friend shrugs adding, "Or boyfriend in this case. Just for the week though."
"Or until Klemson is gone," Margaret chimes in as she asks B.J. not to say anything to anyone else. The newer camp surgeon shrugs adding, "Why not? It's not every day you get to see two of your best friends together."
With a pointed look from the head nurse, B.J. smiles explaining, "Just teasing. Mum's the word. Carry on!"
The next day, Hawkeye barely knocks on Margaret's tent door before barging in exclaiming, "Honey, I'm home!"
He smirks as Magaret jumps a bit. Putting her letter down, the blonde whispers, "What are you doing here?"
"Can't a woman's pretend boyfriend come in and surprise her?" Hawkeye remarks sitting down on his friend's cot. Part of her wonders if she makes the wrong choice, but noticing the keen look he gives her, Margaret lets her defenses fall as she asks, "Are you okay?"
"What's the full story, Margaret? Between you and General Klemson?"
Knowing he is merely asking as a friend, Margaret sighs.
"I was hoping to never tell anyone, but General Klemson was how I earned my nickname," She states wondering how the entirety of the U.S. Army can still use a nickname from ten years ago, but be unaware of the fact she is married. Eyes wide, Hawkeye asks, "Klemson? I thought you earned 'Hot Lips' here?"
Margaret shakes her head. After a pause, she apprehensively states, "I got a letter from Donald. He wants to 'settle everything'."
"Are you going to?" Hawkeye asks as he toes off his boots and reclines on her cot. She pretends not to notice and answers half-heartedly, "I don't know."
Noticing her look of defeat, Hawkeye wants to find his friend's good for nothing husband and punch him, but settles for motioning her to him. Against her better judgement, the blonde rises from her chair and walks over to her bed. Snuggling beside the man who only a week ago she has an affair with, Margaret realizes she finds not only comfort being near him but also solace in confiding in him over more of her problems. Something neither of them feels possible until after their trip to the 8063rd. With familiar activity of the camp, and lack of sleep, both doctor and nurse fall asleep. After what only feels like minutes, they wake up to a knock on the tent door. Startled awake, the Major quickly wakes Hawkeye and orders him to the skinny, upright locker in the corner of her tent. Still groggy, Hawkeye stumbles into the locker amazed that he can actually fit.
"Mail!" Klinger exclaims happily once the nurse opens her tent door. Aware of her attire, Margaret self consciously takes her letter. Seeing the return address is from her husband, she angrily tears it open. Realizing he and Margaret are alone again, he exits the locker closet that he is currently inside, Hawkeye watches Margaret read her letter and cry out, "That rat!"
"He's demanding I meet him in three days to discuss things."
"Discussion is good," Hawkeye points out. Shaking her head, Margaret spits, "Not with Donald. I'm surprised he hasn't run away yet."
"Who knows, it could be the start of something good," Hawkeye encourages as he mentally kicks himself for helping instead of hindering. Secretly, he wants the divorce. Margaret is too good for the likes of Donald Penobscott.
"Wounded!" The loudspeaker announces causing the pair to look at each other in exhaustion.
"It's only been ten hours," Hawkeye grouses as Margaret leads him out her tent door.
Still plagued by Major Klemson who is supervising them for the afternoon, the head nurse and surgeon try to tag team as much as possible. Unfortunately, she finds herself pairing with Charles toward what they think is the end of their shift. Never an issue before, Margaret finds herself slipping a little with General Klemson standing near her.
"Margaret, can you come over here a minute?" Hawkeye asks while he is wrist deep in sewing muscle. "I need you to hold back this flesh for me. Nurse Able is helping with the less wounded."
Thankful to escape close proximity of her old flame, Margaret complies.
"Is he bothering you?" Hawkeye questions feeling some sort of protective nature over his friend. Margaret shakes her head.
"I can handle it."
"I know, but I want to help if you need it," Hawkeye offers. He can see her eyes betray a smile behind her mask as she whispers, "Thank- you, but no. He leaves tomorrow."
Hawkeye processes her words before flirting, "What are you doing later?"
"Need some company? I've been known to be a very calming presence," Hawkeye grins as he sews the last bit of muscle. Brushing his hand as she takes the scissors, Margaret glances up at the surgeon in silent confirmation. In all the times she needs it, he is a very calming force. She sees the way his eyes crinkle which lets her know he understands.
"More wounded!" Klinger calls out causing the camp to groan.
"I just finished this guy up, Margaret will you close, and I'll get new gloves. Klinger, where do you want me?" Hawkeye asks as a nurse re-gloves his hands.
The rest of the session lasts well past midnight. Straggling out of OR, all the officers and enlisted are ready to fall asleep. Hawkeye barely registers his bunk mates passing him on the way out. Scrubbing his hands off one last time, the surgeon hears yelling coming from just outside the operating room. Always curious, Hawkeye investigates only to find Margaret being grabbed by the arm. Jumping in to save her, Hawkeye sees Klemson quickly let go.
"You know it should have been me!" Klemson murmurs before leaving the room. A look of confusion passes over Margaret's face as she replays the altercation in her head.
"Margaret, are you okay?" Hawkeye asks bringing the woman out of her thoughts. Nodding, Margaret reassures her friend that Klemson only grabs her arm.
"I was trying to leave, but then he kept saying that I was the one who got away. Me? A woman he cheated on? He kept trying to explain how he and Marlene, his wife, are getting a divorce, but all he sees is a woman from ten years ago," Margaret whispers wondering how he can hold on for so long to a fling. Looking into her friend's caring eyes, she states, "I'm not that girl anymore."
Tucking a strand of hair from her face, Hawkeye replies, "I know. Let's get you to bed. No one is thinking straight right now."
Walking the head nurse back to her tent, Hawkeye makes sure no one is around before he asks, "Do you want me to stay here? In case he comes back?"
Margaret shakes her head, but thanks him for his offer.
"I'll be fine tonight. Go back to your tent."
Hawkeye nods before heading to bed. Opening the tent door, Hawkeye hears B.J. tease, "About time you joined us."
"Yeah, I had to walk Margaret back to her tent," Hawkeye answers as he sits on his cot and takes off his shoes.
"If no one knew you Pierce, they'd say you liked The Major more than you think," Charles remarks as he crawls into his bed. Instead of replying, Hawkeye fluffs his pillow before falling asleep. By the next morning, Colonel Potter sees General Klemson off with Hawkeye, B.J., and Margaret just in eyesight of the general. Margaret glares at him as Hawkeye gives him a mock salute. General Klemson makes sure to divert his eyes knowing Margaret and her boyfriend are angry at him. Just to irk him more, Hawkeye places his arm around the Major in a show of affection.
"Looks like we can stop the charade now," Hawkeye comments taking his arm off her shoulder as General Klemson rides out of the camp. Margaret nods a little sad that they have to part. However, still being married poses bigger problems for her in the future.
Letting things settle back to normal, everyone remembers that Hawkeye is still his normal, womanizing self. One day after the camp settles down to decompress from the day's OR session, Margaret goes searching for Hawkeye. Finding him sitting outside his tent with B.J., the blonde motions him to a private conversation behind the tent.
"I got it approved, the three day pass. Donald and I can officially patch things up," Margaret states. He smiles at her even though he is unable to comprehend her need to repair her marriage when the man she is married to is a scumbag. But, he is happy for her, as long as she is happy. Congratulating her, he receives an uncharacteristic hug.
However, four days later, the camp is met with a morose, angry Margaret who seeks seclusion. Noting the change, Hawkeye knocks on his friend's tent door. Her eyes are red as she opens the door, but she clings to Hawkeye like a lifeline once he walks inside.
"Hey, what happened?"
"Nothing," She mumbles. Confused, Hawkeye parrots her words.
"Everything," She adds letting go. After a moment Margaret finally explains that Donald's version of patching everything up is trying to seduce her. Angry again, she roars, "How can he think he can work on our problems that way?"
"That is his way of working on problems, Margaret," Hawkeye explains gently. The head surgeon is just as angry as Margaret, but figures playing Devil's Advocate will help her see her husband's flaws. Margaret purses her lips in anger. She can barely speak as she concludes that Hawkeye is right. Donald tries to fix things by avoiding them.
"I just thought it would be different this time. Why?" She asks softly more to herself than Hawkeye. Shaking his head, the head surgeon replies, "I don't know."
After a moment, Margaret apologizes for her outbursts.
"Hey, don't be sorry. I'm here whenever you need it," Hawkeye replies before giving her his signature smile. Against her wishes, Margaret smiles.
"Thank- you," She whispers.
"Any time," He answers before leaving her to her thoughts.
A little over a month later, the camp returns to normal. Margaret goes back to her bossy self, yet is more overbearing on her nurses than usual during one of their surgeries. Once everyone is getting out of their scrubs, Hawkeye notices Margaret struggling to untie the knot in her surgical mask.
"'Oh, Margaret, let me give you a hand'," He begins. As he helps her, the head surgeon notices how tight the knot is.
"'This may take a minute'," Hawkeye remarks before he quips, "'I'm used to doing this in the dark.'"
"'Go away'," She complains. Continuing to undo her surgical mask, Hawkeye reassures, "'Don't panic. I'll have you out of there in no time.'"
"'I just wish you people would leave me alone!'" Margaret exclaims wanting to simply be left alone with her thoughts.
"'Oh, yeah? Like the way you left Nurse Bell alone?'" The head surgeon presses.
"'I was doing my job!'" She snaps as she turns to look at him.
"'You never fall on a nurse that hard for such a nitpicky mistake. You're too good for that. What's eating you?'" Hawkeye begins wanting to help his friend.
"'Nothing!'" She demands unsure if she can even tell him her suspicions.
"'Come on. If you can't tell your number one nemesis, who can you tell?'" Hawkeye teases knowing they are not nemesis anymore.
"'I can't. Can't even imagine that it's true'," She says to herself more than her friend. Interested, the head surgeon asks, "'What's true?'"
"'Would you lower your voice?'" She hisses not wanting anyone else to know.
"'Is this low enough? I'm sorry. I'm using my larynx as a subway station. What is it?'" Hawkeye questions.
"'Well, I was with Donald about six weeks ago in Tokyo, and -'" She starts before losing her nerve.
"'Yeah?'" Hawkeye asks. Trying to tell him let alone herself, the blonde begins, "'Well, I think -'"
"'What?'" Hawkeye asks curious.
"'I'm pretty sure that I'm pregnant'," Margaret finally admits.
"'Pregnant?'" Hawkeye asks excitedly while Margaret shushes him as he asks for clarification, "'You mean with child?'"
She shushes him again as her friend keeps speaking.
"'Expecting? Our little major is gonna have a minor? That's wonderful!'" He exclaims before apologizing for raising his voice.
"'There's nothing wonderful about it'," The head nurse grumbles.
"'Are you kidding?'" Hawkeye asks, "'All we see around here is death and destruction. Now, in the middle of an inferno that even Dante wouldn't buy tickets to there's a little glimmer of life thanks to you. That's not wonderful. That's a miracle.'"
"'You know Donald and I are having problems. This isn't gonna solve them. It's only gonna add to them. And you know what it means, don't you? Automatic discharge. My whole army career, kaput! It's all Donald's fault'," Margaret complains, even though she is unsure if the child is really Donald's. However, she is not going to tell Hawkeye her suspicion, especially if the test turns out to be false.
"'Well, I wouldn't put it all on Donald. I mean, you were probably there at the time. What made you so sure?'" The surgeon questions wondering if she is misdiagnosing herself.
"'I have all the symptoms - morning sickness, nausea'," Margaret begins as Hawkeye remarks, "'We all have that from the Mess Tent takeout window.'"
"'There's more'," She continues. "'I've been irritable lately.'"
"'Well, if you count irritability you've been pregnant since I've known you'," Hawkeye teases as Margaret rolls her eyes and whispers, "'Captain, that time of the month hasn't been that time of the month yet. And that was last month.'"
"'Maybe your watch stopped," Hawkeye jokes before he asks, "'Have you verified this medically?'"
"'Well, no lab tests'," Margaret admits. She can see the glimmer in his eyes as if the child is actually his before Hawkeye states, "'Well, then what are you guessing for? Why don't we go see Colonel Potter and set up a test?'"
Finally able to test the results a few days later, Hawkeye and Margaret enter the desolate OR. Knowing they only have a few minutes left, the head surgeon and head nurse are in shock when a hostage situation occurs in front of them, and a little too close to their lab results. After the situation is dissolved with a merry-go-round of negotiation, Hawkeye and Margaret get back to their results.
"That's one way to spend five minutes," The head surgeon jokes as he sits in front of the microscope. Focusing the projector on the slide, Hawkeye exclaims, "'This is incredible.'"
Eager to know, Margaret asks, "'What? What?'"
"'I never knew my thumb was this big'," He jokes. Unamused, Margaret asks, "'Oh, will you cut it out?'"
Serious again, Hawkeye answers, "'All right. Wait a minute. Wait a minute. There.'"
"'What?'" Margaret asks.
Ever the dramatic one, Hawkeye teases, "'And the winner is -'"
"'Pierce!'" The head nurse whines. Knowing she wants her answers, Hawkeye finally replies, "'Negative.'"
Margaret parrots his word before Hawkeye reiterates, "'Negative. Congratulations. You're still a major, Major.'"
Released from her anxiousness, Margaret replies, "'Yeah. I guess I still am. Thank you. Thank you very much.'"
Although her words are thankful, the head nurse is a little upset. She is happy she is not going to be a mother any time soon, especially with her current marital problems. But, with an off chance that the child not to be is Hawkeye's?
"'I'm glad it turned out the way you wanted it to'," Hawkeye tells her even though he is a little sad himself. He is not dumb and knows there is a possibility that the hypothetical child is his.
"'So am I. I'm also sorry.'"
Later that night, Margaret sits in her tent with her diary. She knows it is a little childish to keep the work, but it is a comfort to her, especially as regular army. As she begins her entry, Margaret hears a knock on her tent door.
"Come in," She calls out before hiding her diary from whoever enters. Seeing Hawkeye come in, she cocks her head to the side.
"I came to see if you were okay," Hawkeye explains. His friend sighs before truthfully answering, "I'm fine. It's a good thing it didn't happen. Who knows what would have happened if it had been positive."
"You'd have gotten what you wanted."
Margaret shakes her head answering, "I would've been trapped in a loveless marriage with a child who would grow up to resent us."
"You could always divorce him," Hawkeye replies offhandedly. A small smirk appears on her face as the head nurse replies, "I'll keep that in mind. Thank- you, Hawkeye."
"Anything I can do to help," He states before heading off to his tent. Halfway back, Hawkeye turns around realizing he has one other question. Re-entering Margaret's tent, Hawkeye asks before he can stop himself, "Why didn't you tell me it could be mine?"
Seeing her startled reaction, Hawkeye lowers his tone and calmly asks his question again. Margaret waits a moment before whispering, "I didn't want to hurt you. If it turned out false, or if it were actually Donald's? This is not a movie, Pierce. The pieces aren't just going to fall into place. Besides, it was negative, like you said."
She wants him to let go. She wants to let go, but has to ask him, "How did you figure it out? That my pregnancy scare could have been yours?"
"I can do the math. It was only a week and a half after we went to the 8063rd that you went to see Donald."
Sighing, Margaret replies, "A lot happened in that week."
"Yeah, I became your boyfriend," Hawkeye jokes. Realizing she never thanks him for helping her, Margaret extends her thanks to him.
"I'd do it again. Anytime you need a fake boyfriend, just call," The head surgeon smirks. The blonde shakes her head at his humor. Staring up at her friend, Margaret states, "I need to tell you why I chose you as my boyfriend."
"Chose me? Do tell!" Hawkeye replies as he sits down on her bed slightly eager to hear her story.
"To be honest, you weren't my first choice. You were my only choice. I can trust you, and you've been there for me," She begins. "Especially after Darlene."
Hawkeye begins to interrupt her as Margaret explains that she knows he is a womanizer, but adds, "You have something neither Donald nor Roger have. Compassion, morals, selflessness. I trust you Hawkeye, and I'm beginning to see that the men in my life so far, I can't trust. You are the exception."
Hawkeye takes in his friends words. Sincerely, he replies, "Thank- you, Margaret."