Subject: The Accidental Encounter
Oh no, it's Megan, Beth's kid sister, Tim gasped. Her long silken hair draped the steering wheel.
“Hurry, get the jaws out,” Tim shouted as he neared the car.
“Megan, it's Tim. Are you with me, girl?”
“Uh,” the eighteen girl moaned, “Tim, I stole Beth's car. I was so mad at her for sulking about you working.”
“Sh, honey, it's OK. Don't get excited,” he calmly checked her hands, “Hurry up will ya?”
Soon, they were getting her out of the compact car, stabilizing her on the gurney. Tim automatically carried out the motions for this emergency. His mind mulled over what Megan said. Beth sulking?
In the ambulance, Megan stared at Tim, “Beth wouldn't go to the party. She said it wouldn't be right without you. She was steamed that you have this job and had to work on New Year's Eve. I screamed at her to not let some dumb guy mess up her evening. I was mad that she wouldn't go with me, so I stomped out and stole her car, Tim. Now, you're here taking care of me.”
“It's OK, are you having any pain?”
“No, Tim. Should I?”
Tim felt the sweat pour down his back, despite the cool air around them. He quickly grabbed a drug to put in the IV he had started in her thin thready vein.
“Tim, what's that? Are you going to make me sleep?”
“No, it's not a sedative. It will help reduce any swelling.”
Quickly the ambulance entered the bay at the ER. The report had been called in. The staff geared up at the door ready for action. Tim shouted the newest vitals, the drugs he had given, and Megan's level of consciousness. He nodded grimly when questioned about the feeling in her legs. Megan screamed at Tim, “What are you saying? Oh, Tim”
“Be calm, Megan. It could be temporary. Try not to be upset,” he stroked her shoulder while they wheeled her into a room.
Tim walked out to the hall. Beth stood a distance away with her parents. She didn't see him. He brushed his hand through his hair. Oh, boy, what am I going to say. Hold on, Timmy Boy. Let the doctor do the talking.
The ER doctor, in a few minutes, emerged from the room, patted Tim on the shoulder, “You made the right calls. I think the swelling is going down. I think your calm decisions may keep this young lady from paralysis.”
Beth stood there, tears running down her face. The doctor walked over to her parents, leaving her alone with Tim.
“I didn't realize how important this career is. The doctor had high praise for you, didn't he? Tim, you were there for my sister. How can I say I'm sorry and thank you at the same time?”
Tim embraced his fiancée, “Honey, I'm just glad Megan's going to be all right. You should see your car wrapped around the tree. I thought it was you, my stomach flipped flopped. I felt so bad we fought. I wanted you to understand. Oh, how I wanted you to understand.”
Sobs flowed out of Beth, the messy, snotty kind, but Tim thought she never was more beautiful. He squeezed her tighter than he had, as a deep emotion surfaced, a mixture of relief, gratitude and love.
Twelve months later, on New Year's Eve, Megan strolled down the aisle as maid of honor for her sister. Beth elegantly entered the sanctuary on her father's arm, tears of joy trickling quietly over her cheeks as she embraced life with the hero of the family, Tim Hunter.
No one ever complained about Tim missing a holiday again, especially Beth. They learned that accidents don't take holidays, so neither can paramedics.