Heya, guys. Sorry for the long wait for this chapter, but real life kept me busy. Thanks to all the readers, reviewers, followers and those of you that favourited this story; it was great to hear from all of you. Well all good things must come to an end, and it's time for this one to end as well. Thank you to my beta, C. Nichole for making sure the story is edited and improved.
I don't own any of the recognizable characters, only Phillip, Freddie and the evil shooters at the precinct.
Jo, Christine and Lindsay stepped off the elevator and headed down to Mac's room. With one hand on her gun and one on the knob, Jo went to open the door, and immediately heard a gunshot from inside the room, followed by two more. Screams erupted around them as nurses ducked and pulled patients down with them. Jo threw open the door and was greeted with lots of blood and three grown men lying on the floor, all of them bleeding and one whose heart had stopped- one man had lost his life.
Jo rushed into the room heading first to the unfamiliar man lying on the floor to kick his gun away. Lindsay made a beeline for Danny who was desperately trying to get up. Christine blanched at the site and smell of the blood in the room, but when she saw Mac on the floor bleeding, she went straight to him.
"Danny, lie down. You've been shot!" Lindsay was on her knees next to him with her hand on the shoulder wound, blood running through her fingers.
"Mac, help Mac. I'm fine!" he said, but laid back down as the pain in his shoulder flared. Lindsay glanced over at Jo as she bent down to feel the stranger's pulse. Jo sighed and straightened up, looking at Lindsay she shook her head. The unidentified man was dead.
Christine's sobs finally broke through the deafening silence that permeated the room, causing Jo to run to the door to call for help, while Lindsay exchanged Danny's side for Mac's. There was a new gash along his jaw line and the wounds on his back were bleeding profusely. Mere seconds later, the room was filled with doctors and nurses and the two CSIs along with Christine were ushered out of the room by an orderly.
Danny was whisked away to the OR to get the bullet out of his arm, while another gurney left Mac's room carrying the dead body. Christine was sobbing into Jo's shoulder as the door opened and a doctor came out to speak to the two ladies.
"He will be fine, "the doctor said, trying to calm the women, "the wounds on his back reopened and we had to stitch them up again. It appears that a bullet grazed his jaw, but I cannot be sure until we know what happened in there. We are going to move him to another room as I believe that you would like to process this room, am I right?"
"Yes, doctor, we would. It is a crime scene after all." Jo hated the idea of once again having to process a scene where Mac was the victim. "Thank you, doctor." He shook her hand and left to oversee the transfer of his patient.
Just as the gurney left the room, Lindsay came back from checking on Danny. Jo watched as they wheeled her friend to another room, with Christine walking behind the nurses hoping they would allow her to see him. Jo caught Lindsay wiping a tear and pulled the younger woman into a hug.
"It's ok; he's going to be fine," she whispered in Lindsay's ear while rubbing her back gently as she cried, "How's Danny?"
Lindsay looked at Jo with a tear streaked face, "He went in for surgery to take out the bullet. They think that there will be some nerve damage, but will only be sure when he wakes up." She sniffed, wiping her eyes on her sleeve.
"See, he is going to be fine. Now I am going to phone Adam and Hawkes to do the processing. Why don't you get in touch with Sid, so he can tend to the body? We need to find out who he is." Lindsay nodded, going for her phone when suddenly it rang in her hand.
"Hello?" Jo watched her face go pale and her hands start shaking, "Yeah, thanks, Don. No, no we're still at the hospital…no, someone tried to kill Mac; no no, he's fine, and Danny was there. Listen we'll talk when you get here. Fine, yeah thanks."
Jo looked at Lindsay questioningly. Lindsay, on the other hand, was staring at her phone and had a little frown between her eyes. She looked up and met Jo's worried expression.
"There was a shooting at the precinct. A couple of men came in and started shooting up the place. They ended up taking Don and Freddie hostage in an interrogation room." Lindsay's brown eyes watered again and she took a deep breath, "They shot at him, Jo. They wanted to kill him." Jo closed the distance and took the younger woman in her arms once again, holding her shaking frame in a strong hug. She was comforting her when Adam ran up to them.
"I was in the neighbourhood when you called. Is Mac ok? What about Danny? Lindsay? What's wrong?" Jo sighed; Adam was a brilliant scientist, but when he became nervous or excited, he'd go into full blown babble mode. He stopped talking when Sheldon stepped up and put a hand on his shoulder.
"Give them chance to answer, Adam," the older man said with a smile.
"Mac is fine, they had to stich his back again; Danny got a bullet in his arm – he's in surgery now. Someone tried to kill Freddie at the police station." Jo kept everything short as she spotted a doctor walking towards the group.
"Doctor?" That got everybody's attention. The doctor had his poker face on and Jo could feel her heart sink.
"I took the liberty of checking on Mr. Messer before I came to talk to you and according to my colleague, he is doing fine. They retrieved the bullet and are busy cleaning up. A nurse will come get you when he is settled, Mrs. Messer." Lindsay's smile couldn't get bigger. The doctor continued, "Detective Taylor sustained a few more bruises and the cut along his jaw required a couple stiches as well, but he will make a full recovery. We moved him into a double room and as soon as Mr. Messer comes out of recovery we will move him into the same room."
"Thank you, Doctor." Sheldon shook the other doctor's hand and the group visibly relaxed.
"We need to find out who was in the room and then we need to find this Phillip-asshole. I have this very funny feeling that he is behind this whole thing." Jo started dividing the work between the CSIs and they got to it.
The time flew, and by the time the scene was processed, Danny was in the room with Mac and neither showed any sign of waking up. Christine sat next to Mac, clinging to his hand and the position was exactly the same on the other side of the room with Lindsay. Lindsay spoke to Danny occasionally, telling him of Lucy and how much she loved him. Christine, on the other hand, kept her conversation quiet, conveying her feelings with her hands and the look in her eyes. There was a soft knock on the door and the two women looked up to see Don standing there. Lindsay got up and flew into his arms. As she looked over his shoulder, she saw Freddie talking to Jo. She untangled herself from Don and ran over to Freddie.
"Hey, Freaky Brain. Shh, it's ok, I'm fine. Don pushed the guy away before he could shoot me. He's in jail now." He rubbed her back up and down as she cried. She looked up at him with red-rimmed eyes,
"I just found you, Monkey. I don't want to lose you again," she whispered to him and he smiled.
"I'm not going anywhere, honey. You are not getting rid of me that easily." She laughed at his silly expression. Lindsay wiped a hand over her eyes and pulled him with her as she walked back to the room that held her husband and friend.
The rest of the day went by uneventfully. Adam, Jo and Hawkes went back to the lab to process the evidence from the hospital, while Don went back to the station to interrogate the shooter and his friends. Sid was busy with the autopsy. They all agreed that they would go back to the hospital the next day to go over the results, giving the women time with their loved ones. Freddy felt like a third wheel, but ended up doing a coffee run where he ran into a nurse from the paediatric ward and they got talking. He stopped only long enough to give Christine and his cousin their coffees before making his way to the children's ward. He ended up playing with the children and helping the nurses by keeping some of the children busy – leaving them with more time on their hands to see to the more critical children.
It was slightly after one in the morning that an exhausted Freddy came back down to the floor where Mac and Danny were. He looked through the window and saw his cousin fast asleep on her arms on the side of her husband's bed and Christine sleeping in the chair next to Mac, still clinging to his hand for dear life. He went to the nurses' station and got two blankets. He softly opened the door and covered Christine first and then moved to Lindsay. He turned to go to the last unoccupied chair in the room, but froze when he heard a soft, hoarse voice call him. He turned to find Danny looking at him.
"Thank you," Danny whispered.
Freddie frowned at him, "For what?"
He moved closer to the bedside. Danny motioned to Lindsay with his head.
"The blanket, for Mac. Everything." He swallowed and Freddie held a cup of water to his mouth.
"It's my pleasure. Don't worry, everything will be fine now." Freddie gave Danny a smile which Danny returned. He closed his eyes and fell asleep again. Freddie moved over to stand next to Mac and took in the features of the man lying on the bed. His face wasn't as bruised as it was a couple of days before, but the cut along his jaw looked sore.
"I told you I'd help you." He whispered and then moved to the chair and sat down. He smiled as he took out his phone to save the number the cute paediatric nurse had given him, before settling in to keep a silent vigil over the four people in the room.
The morning came in bright and way too fast. Freddie blinked in the morning light that came through the window. He smiled as he saw Lindsay standing in front of him with coffee in her hands.
"Good morning, sleepy head." She handed him the coffee which he accepted gratefully.
"Morning, Freaky brain." He took a sip, but almost choked when Danny spoke up.
"Thank goodness, he was snoring us all awake." Freddie looked at him and smirked when Lindsay softly punched him on his uninjured shoulder.
"It wasn't that bad," Christine spoke up.
"Thank you!" Freddie bowed in her direction. The laughter dried up when they heard a soft voice speak up.
"You guys make way too much noise." Mac's voice caused everyone to turn to him. Christine recovered first and bent down to kiss him softly,
"How do you feel?" She glanced briefly at Lindsay who called the nurse.
"Sore, where is the damn truck that ran me over?" Mac looked at Freddie and frowned, but before he could say anything the nurse came in to check his vitals. After she was satisfied she called in two more nurses and together they turned Mac onto his side to check his wounds. A while later they were finished and the rest of the group came in- they were glad to see both men awake.
"Well, that's just like Mac. Wake up just in time for the case to be wrapped up," Jo laughed.
"I am happy to announce," Sheldon started, acting like a referee at a boxing match, "that the case is now over and everything can go back to normal."
"You caught Phillip?" Freddie asked with hope in his voice, which in turn made Mac frown- he knew that voice.
"No, Danny killed him," Sid said. "he was the guy in the room yesterday." Everybody clapped hands and Freddie wiped a tear off his face. The nightmare was really over, finally. After everyone had calmed down and explained what they knew about how things played out, Mac called Freddie over. The room went quiet, Freddie walked over slowly.
"You helped me." It was a simple statement, said softly.
"Yes, I tried." Freddie swallowed, "I'm sorry I couldn't do it sooner…" Mac silenced him with a look.
"I told Danny before and I am telling you now – it wasn't your fault. None of this could have been prevented by any of you." He took a deep breath and continued, "Phillip wanted revenge and no one was going to stop him."
Mac yawned. Christine got up and said, "Okay, enough for today, you guys. Let's give them a rest." With the last goodbyes spoken and hugs all round, everybody left to go their own way- leaving Mac and Danny alone.
"Mac," Danny started but was stopped by Mac,
"Messer, if you are going to apologize save your breath. I don't want to hear it." Danny was shocked into complete silence.
"I don't want to hear it, because I don't blame you. This wasn't your fault." Mac yawned again. "You hear me Messer?"
Danny answered with a smile, "I heard ya, Mac." With that he fell into a restful sleep – everything was going to be fine.
An epilogue is coming your way so stay tuned. Please let me know what you think. CSIflea.