by EM Fan
Part 12: PERILOUS PLIGHT
by EM Fan
Mark had confessed the truth about the Derek Fossen situation to Kerry. She sat at her desk with a stunned look on her face.
Mark: I just couldn't bring myself to revive him after everything he's done. I know that it wasn't my best judgment, but...
Kerry: (interrupts) Your best judgment? What in the world were you thinking, Mark?!
Mark: Honestly, I was thinking that he didn't deserve to be treated. I know that it wasn't very ethical of me to think like that, but that's what I did. He was on the way to my house to go after Elizabeth and our baby when the shooter got him.
Kerry: You're damn right it wasn't very ethical of you. We're doctors, Mark, and sometimes whether we like it or not, we need to put our personal feelings aside and do our jobs!
Kim: Kerry, it was very difficult for Mark to open up to me yesterday and I'm sure that it's even more difficult for Mark to have opened up with you today.
Kerry: But, Kim, that's not the issue here! The fact Mark did not attempt to save a patient who was right in front of him...that's the issue!
Kim: Yes, that's true, but we need to be aware of what Mark was going through at the time.
Kerry: And what about what the patient was going through?
Mark: But we did save his life in the trauma room. Either on the way to the OR or during surgery, Fossen could have died at any time.
Kerry: So it was all right to just end his life when you had the chance to save him? I'm sorry, Mark, but I am not accepting this explanation. I feel that you have acted in an unprofessional manner, and pending the results of an investigation by Dr. Romano, Dr. Anspaugh, and myself, I have no choice but to temporarily suspend you.
Kim: Isn't that a little drastic, Kerry?
Kerry: No, it's hospital policy.
Kim: How do you think Mark felt? This man could have hurt both his wife and child if that person had not stopped him. He was having feelings of contempt and rage, so it is only fair to conclude that he was not thinking clearly.
Kerry: Deliberately ending a life was a result of not thinking clearly?
Kim: Yes, the probability is very high.
Kerry: Mark, is it possible that you are relapsing from the tumor?
Mark: This has nothing to do with it, Kerry.
Kerry: Well, I am requesting that you see a neurologist for some tests and that you make an appointment with Kim to discuss this case further.
Mark: Another competency hearing?
Kerry: Perhaps, but we'll need to decide after the results of the neurological tests and a psychiatric exam. I'm sorry, Mark. You're a good doctor and I don't want to lose you, but I need to follow protocol here.
Mark: Sure, Kerry, I understand.
Kerry: Do you?
Mark: I suppose. Well, I'd better go home now that I am under investigative leave. (he picked himself up and walked out of Kerry's office)
Kim: (gets up and follows Mark) Mark, wait.
Mark: Thanks, Kim. I appreciate all your help here in the last couple of days.
Kim: Don't worry. I know what it's like to be on investigative leave. Trust me, I'll do everything I can to help.
Mark: I appreciate your support.
Kim: Just go home and relax, and try not to think about this. You need to give your mind a break. Then when you've gathered your thoughts, call psych and make an appointment.
Mark: Will do. See ya.
Kim returned to Kerry's office. The two looked at each other awkwardly. Neither knew what the other one was thinking, so neither knew what to say.
Kim: Are you alright?
Kerry: Yeah. I'm fine.
Kim: Kerry, please don't be upset with me. It's part of my job to handle this the way that I did.
Kerry: Kim, honey, I understand that. I'm just worried about Mark's tumor; that's all. Do you suppose that the tumor is what caused his momentary lapse of reasoning?
Kim: I...honestly don't know.
Kerry: You're not upset with me, are you?
Kim: At the beginning of the meeting, I thought that you were a little harsh on him, but then you backed off.
Kerry: I was devastated at first. Anyone in my position would have acted the same way.
Kim: True. Well, remember what we discussed last night? We promised that we wouldn't let any professional conflicts of interest interfere with us.
Kerry: Yes, I remember.
Kim: Well, let's start now, okay?
Kerry: (smiles at Kim) Okay.
Kim: (walks up to Kerry and sits on her desk directly in front of her) Now, kiss me!
Kerry: Is that an order?
Kim: Most definitely!
Kerry's and Kim's lips locked in passion and intimacy.
Kerry: If you keep this up, you may get yourself into trouble.
Kim: Good trouble, I hope.
Kerry: Isn't that the best kind?