Rating: PG-13 to start, for violence (non-sexual) and language.
Disclaimer: I don’t own the Guiding Light characters, they belong to CBS and Proctor and Gamble.
Summary: This is set in the spring of 2009. I’ve taking some liberties with the storyline, mainly Natalia never slept with Frank, hence no engagement etc. So our girls have been just continuing forward raising Emma and getting closer to each other though they are still technically just friends, but that may change… This is a hurt/comfort story so they are headed on a rough ride.
Author’s Note: This is my first fan fiction so please be gentle. This would not have been possible if not for the persistent nudging and awesome editing of my beta/great friend croftlara. Comments are welcome.
From her spot seated on the coffee table tending to the injured man, Natalia could only hear the confrontation behind her between the gunman and Olivia. She closed her eyes and hoped that Olivia would keep her mouth shut while he ranted at her but knowing her friend as she did, she knew Olivia wanted nothing more than to tear the man apart verbally and physically right about now. Natalia winced at the use of the ‘F word’, knowing that although Olivia herself could out swear any sailor, she preferred that Emma not be subjected to such offensive language. Natalia also knew Olivia enough to know that she was not going to be happy with her for helping these men but what else could she have done? The man could very well die if somebody didn’t help him but more than that, Olivia took a big risk defying the man with the gun. This situation wasn’t going to magically disappear; they had to find a way to resolve it and making the gunman angry was a stupid move no matter how upset Olivia was.
Natalia, allowed herself to admit that she was furious at him too for using Emma like that but Emma had come through like a trooper, and yet her mother couldn’t have just done what had been asked and not risked their lives any more than was necessary? Natalia sighed, she thought about how passionate Olivia is about everything, especially her daughter and she couldn’t help but empathize, she feels things very deeply but she’s also very obstinate, she should have let that go, it was too big of a risk.
When she heard the man step in behind her, Natalia pulled herself back from her thoughts and resumed her ministrations, such as they were. She had pulled the man’s shirt up to expose the large jagged hole that pierced his side front to back. She spoke to the man as she packed gauze over the ugly wound.
“You’re going to be ok. I’m just going to try and stop the bleeding.” When he winced at the pressure she was putting on the hole, she continued, “I know it hurts, I’m sorry, but I have to do it to stop the bleeding.” Then to try to distract him, she casually asked his name. Before the man could answer, his friend who had been watching from behind interrupted quietly but firmly, “No names.”
Natalia nodded and continued to put pressure on the wound then she turned her head to look up at the standing man. “He really does need a doctor. This is a really big wound, I don’t think I can stop the blood and he may have internal injuries that I can’t do anything about. Please, I have a friend who is a paramedic, his name is Remy, if we call him he might be able to come and help.”
“No. Stop the bleeding, we’re not calling anybody.”
From her spot on the floor, Olivia watched the exchange in shock. Natalia was not only helping these men but she was offering to bring Remy into the situation. What was she thinking? Olivia was too busy trying to think of ways to help themselves not help these bastards. She had been looking around the room to see if there was anything that she could use as a weapon to hit the big guy with. She would be content with bringing down the coffee table on his head but didn’t think that was very realistic. Her eyes met the eyes of Natalia’s Virgin Mary statue on the fireplace mantle. Not big enough. With a sigh she thought of her own gun ‘safely’ locked away in her closet. A lot of good it’s doing up there.
Long minutes passed until the larger gunman started pacing, he could see that the blood wasn’t stopping. Forgetting the hostages for a minute he considered that his kid brother Brian could actually die in this hick little farmhouse, over what, a hundred and fifty-seven bucks? He felt responsible, and he felt scared and confused. He had to think. How were they going get out of this? Maybe he should let the cute Latina call her paramedic buddy. No, stupid. Don’t lose it now. You’re just gonna have to work this out another way, he reasoned.
Natalia could feel the panic rise in the older man’s body language. He had started pacing and shaking his head like he was trying to work something out. She was worried that he might not think rationally the more this played out, especially if his friend continued to lose blood like he was. She tried to think of what else she could be doing for the man under her bloodstained hands and it occurred to her that ice might stem the flow of blood.
The man stopped pacing and looked down at her.
“I think it might help if I could put ice on the wound, it might slow the blood flow.”
Olivia was again stunned. Again, Natalia was helping these men. How would she like it if he put a gun to her head this time and was threatening her son Rafe? So, why is it that she might purposely put Olivia and Emma in that same situation again? She stared at Natalia’s back wishing she would turn around enough to see the look in Olivia’s eyes. The look that warned against offering Emma to be used again as an errand girl.
“Yeah, yeah I think that might help,” the gunman agreed. “If I let you go to the kitchen for ice…” He didn’t finish his thought before Natalia answered, “Then I will go to the kitchen for ice, I promise, I’ll be right back.”
Somehow he knew he could trust those brown eyes that seemed to truly care for his brother. So he nodded and Natalia got up and headed toward the kitchen. She spared a glance toward Olivia hoping that the older woman would understand why she had to help these men. She could not allow a man to die if there was anything in her power to stop it. It went against everything she believed. Even though Olivia was probably trying to come up with ways to kill them, or at least leave them for dead. In fact she could see it in Olivia’s eyes as she walked by her and spared a glance to her friend. But Natalia’s faith told her to love and forgive, no matter the transgression. So far, they hadn’t done anything that would make her break that oath. She hoped that they never would and eventually everyone would leave this nightmare alive and safe.
Natalia took as little time as she could to gather all of the ice in the freezer, the two ice packs and tea towels hanging by the sink. She hurried back to the living room afraid to take any longer than necessary both because she didn’t want the unhurt man to become anxious that she might not return but also because the injured man needed her attention. This time she sat beside the man on the couch so that she could keep an eye on Olivia and Emma knowing that the longer this went on, the more desperate Olivia was going to become.
Olivia watched as Natalia packed the ice around the wound. She hoped this would help because honestly, she didn’t see a way of getting out of this if the man died while under Natalia’s care. She hoped Natalia realized that by taking on the responsibility of caring for him, she also accepted the wrath of the other man if he died because she couldn’t truly help him.
Time seemed to slow as they all waited to see if the ice was doing the trick. They all seemed lost in their own thoughts while they waited. Olivia continued to hug her child to her, Emma was being as quiet as a mouse and Olivia couldn’t help but kiss her on the head and whisper a thank you to her for that. The gunman still paced and worried and tried to think of how they would get out of this place and where they would go when they did. Natalia prayed. She prayed for the man lying on the couch bleeding and grunting occasionally and she prayed that they would all get out of this safely. After some time, though it was hard to tell at first, the blood loss did appear to slow as the new tea towels weren’t getting as soaked as the previous bathroom towels had been. Considering this a good sign, Natalia announced that she thought it was working.
The gunman wanted to take the chance to have a quiet word with his brother so he ordered Natalia back to the floor.
On her retreat back to Olivia and Emma she tried to wipe most of the blood off onto her pajama pants so that Emma wouldn’t be frightened by it but a lot of it had dried already so instead, thankful that the pants had pockets, she put her hands in them hoping that would hide the worst of it.
Olivia watched her walk back to them, noticing the way she hid her hands away and was grateful that, although she seemed to have her priorities mixed up at the moment about who she should be helping, she was still protecting Emma from the image of blood on her hands.
When Natalia sat with her back to the wall, Olivia took the opportunity to talk about the situation as quietly as possible, but first she couldn’t stop herself from admonishing Natalia.
“What are you thinking? Helping them?!”
“Olivia, if I hadn’t, he’d have shot you!”
“How do you know that?” Olivia responded trying to keep her voice down.
“I couldn’t just let him die, any more than I…well I couldn’t take that chance.” Natalia cast her eyes downward, trying to hold back the tears that threatened to fall at the thought of what could have happened to her friend.
Shaking her head free of that concern for now to get to the more important issue at hand, Olivia looked again at Natalia and whispered, “How are we gonna get out of here? I can’t think of anything to hit them with. Are there scissors in the first aid kit that we could use as a weapon? And geez you could have at least grabbed a knife or something from the kitchen.”
“Olivia! I’m trying to save his life not kill him.”
“I know you want to make everything all better here, but we may need to make some hard decisions, ya know. I can’t let them hurt Emma or you. If you see me move I need you to protect Emma.” Putting her hand on Natalia’s knee, as the younger woman still had her hands in her pockets, she held Natalia’s eyes and quietly added, “Can you do that?”
Without hesitation Natalia answered, “With my life Olivia, you know that but I think we need to hold on a bit longer, I think it might be ok.” She added, “Have faith.”
Angry at Natalia’s unwillingness to want take control of the situation, Olivia could only shake her head, “Just see that Emma is safe, k?” She removed her hand from Natalia’s knee and Natalia felt the loss. She knew that Olivia was not one to wait and see, she was used to being in control and they had very little control of their current situation but Natalia refused to believe that putting themselves further into harm’s way would end this.
The gunman leaned down to his brother and while he noticed the women talking, he needed to talk to his brother more than he needed to stop them conspiring. “Brian, man. I’m so sorry. I don’t know what to do. You have to tell me if you think you can move cuz, I don’t think we can stay here much longer without getting you to a doctor.”
“Danny?” The younger man spoke so quietly that the older man had to lean right down to hear him. “I don’t know think I can. Hurts...just wanna sleep.”
“Well you can’t, not yet. I need you with me bro. We gotta finish this.”
Danny could only watch as Brian’s eyes started to close as he lost consciousness.
“Hey!” As he rose and started for Natalia. “Make him wake up!” The man was panicking. He grabbed Natalia by her top and pulled her roughly to her feet. Emma screamed, while Danny yelled as he started to raise his gun, “You told him he’d be ok!”
Before he could pull the gun up to face Natalia, Olivia safely pushed a frightened Emma across the floor toward the kitchen and jumped up and went for the man. Unfortunately, with the time it took for her to get up, he saw the punch coming before it landed and for her trouble, Olivia received a stinging backhand to the face that left her mouth bleeding and slammed her head violently against the wall. Helpless and dazed, Olivia crumpled to the floor fighting the darkness that threatened to overcome her. She barely recognized Emma crawling to her, crying, and calling out to her.
He turned back to Natalia, who held up her bloodied hands, “Wait! Wait!” She pleaded. “I said I’d try, I’m not a doctor. He’s just unconscious but his chest is still moving, he’s still breathing!”
The moment she said that, Brian in fact stirred on the couch. “Where are you?” Danny rushed to his side.
While the gunman moved away from the women, Natalia picked up Emma and positioned the crying child behind her while she checked on Olivia. She had a thin line of blood that trailed from her full lips to her chin and she seemed to be struggling to focus her eyes on Natalia. It took a few minutes but when she did, Natalia could see that Olivia was mad. She was stunned, she was bleeding, she was in pain and boy she was mad. Maybe that was her only chance and she blew it. When Natalia’s hands started fussing over her to see if she was ok, Olivia angrily brushed them off. “See! What did I tell you? Are you trying to get us killed? You can’t fix this with a little love and forgiveness!”
“So attacking, that worked for you did it?” Natalia couldn’t help the response that shot out of her mouth. Instantly, seeing the look on Olivia’s face, she regretted it.
“At least I’m more worried about our health than I am theirs.” Olivia was hurt. Physically, yes but also emotionally. She couldn’t look at Natalia. She only rubbed the side of her head that ached as though she’d been hit with a sledgehammer. She dropped her hands to her lap and tipped her head back and noticed the wall behind her. No, she wasn’t hit with a sledgehammer, she was the sledgehammer, there was a dent in the drywall about the size of the side of Olivia’s head. Unconsciously, she cringed and raised her hand to the aching side of her head again. Yeah that’s gonna leave a mark.
To be continued...