Sneak Peek | Stolen Innocence
Varick sat beside Janet as the sun began to set outside. It was getting late and he was wondering if the doctor was going to come in and check up on her. He thought he’d seen him earlier but wasn’t sure. It was the Saturday after Cassie’s surgery, and Clair was working an all-day shift at Randy’s. He’d taken to coming by with Clair, and today was the first day he’d come to the hospital by himself. The staff had gotten used to him since Monday, and he wasn’t getting many odd looks. He’d heard one of the nurses mutter about that “motorcycle guy” that hung around. She had been speculating that he was Janet’s boyfriend. Wouldn’t she be amused to find out not only was he not into women at all, he wasn’t really into anyone. Until he met the doctor, and now he couldn’t get the boy out of his head.
“Leo, you know you don’t have to keep coming up here almost every day,” Janet said with a grin. “I’m doing pretty well.”
Varick nodded. “Well, yeah, I know but I want to. And, um, maybe there’s another reason too,” he muttered as the door opened.
Varick hid a smile and held his breath. The doctor didn’t look up from his clipboard as he came in and started speaking. “Janet, I am liking the results so far, but I would like to get you in Monday for a few follow-up tests to make certain nothing is off with your brain function. Assuming everything looks good, we should be able to let you go home Friday afternoon.” He looked up and realized that Varick was with her today but not Clair. To Varick’s amusement, Kieran’s glance landed on him for a few minutes before he looked at Janet.
“Okay,” Janet said and gave him a soft smile. “Whatever you think is best, Dr. Sung. After you saved my life, I’ll do any test you want to make sure everything is to your liking!”
Kieran nodded, ducking his head as he left the room. Varick was hesitating, but Janet put a hand on his arm. He turned to her in surprise, wondering if he needed to get the doctor back in there. She leaned over and whispered to him instead.
“Go on, before he goes to the next room.”
Varick stared at her and nodded once. Sometime told him that Clair had talked to her or something. He got up and ran out the door to catch the young doctor. “Um, hey, doc,” he said as he came up beside him.
Kieran looked up at Varick with wide eyes. “Oh, hi. Did you need something? Is Janet in need of something?” Varick could feel the tension from him still. He still looked like he was wound tighter than a coil of string. His hands shook just slightly where he held his clipboard.
“Nah, I just wanted to see if you were goin’ on a break soon.” Varick shifted and put both hands in his jean pockets. He made sure to put his back toward the nurses’ station just in case his nosy nurse friend was within eyeshot.
Kieran blinked and stared for a long time at him. “Um, no, actually I just got back from one…”
“Ah, too bad. Maybe we can go down to the cafeteria if I catch you when you are going on a break. I mean, if you want to,” he said, watching him carefully.
Kieran stared at him blankly for a few moments before he spoke. “Um, yes, we could. I…I mean…yes. I take breaks near lunchtime, most days. I must go. I need to finish my afternoon rounds before I go home,” he said and turned to walk away quickly.
Varick watched him go, eyes following the line of his coat where it just bumped out over his ass. He smiled to himself. If he hadn’t arranged to go to that club with Clair and Charles late tonight, he might have asked him to dinner. He didn’t catch the death glare he was receiving from Mary from the nurses’ station as he turned and left. Of course, he wouldn’t have cared if he had seen it.
Devan continued mentoring them over that first week. It seemed that although Carmine had been around the scene for a while, he was nowhere near as knowledgeable as they had initially thought. He found Carmine had learned some rather unfortunate things from the group he hung out with, and Devan was adamant that he re-learn most things he already knew. At first Carmine had resisted the idea that he had been wrongly instructed, but he soon gave in to Devan’s insistence. Frankly, Varick was overwhelmed by the amount of information he was being given, but he was doing his best to understand it all. He had done some scenes with Devan and Carmine, and he was starting to get comfortable with the idea of being in control of someone else with their permission. By the time Thursday night ended, Varick thought that both he and Carmine had come a long way during their private training sessions at the club. He wasn’t sure why Devan seemed to get access to the place at odd hours.
Devan had been in a Domme mode the past week, and Varick was getting used to the fact that he didn’t just dress like a woman, he was a woman. She, he reminded himself, she was a woman right now. He was going to get this right if it killed him. He liked Devan quite a bit, and the last thing he wanted to do what make her feel uncomfortable. However, that meant that both Carmine and Varick had been watching her work with subs rather than actually having scenes with her as a sub. Devan had asked if he wanted to participate with her and do sexual stuff with the others, but Varick had turned that down. He’d wait until Devan was back in her submissive mood for sexual scenes. He didn’t mind the non-sexual stuff, like flogging, learning to bind, and things like that, but he was not inclined to actually have sex with anyone besides Devan. Carmine would play with others, both sexually and non-sexually, but only if Devan was playing as well.
Friday afternoon saw Varick and Clair waiting with Carrie for her discharge when Kieran entered. Janet had decided to stay until nearly four because she wanted to thank Dr. Sung in person. Final discharges occurred just before five, and Kieran had been on a late shift today, coming in at three. Varick, of course, was here not only for Carrie, but because he wanted to arrange things for the next day for the ride he had promised the young doctor. Varick saw him tense the second he entered. Carrie’s mother was there too, so he thought maybe that was the reason Kieran was so out of sorts. She eased up significantly about Kieran’s age and ability since Carrie’s surgery had been a success and her recovery went along with no problems. Varick thought maybe the confrontation Kieran had with her in the beginning had left him avoiding her. Kieran smile was strained as he nodded to them before speaking.
“There will be a follow up appointment with me in six weeks. Please make sure to keep your appointments with the oncologists. We must make sure we do not have any secondary tumors, but should that happen, it is nowhere near as difficult to go back in a second time. I do not anticipate this happening.” He paused and flipped a page in the clipboard. “Be careful of the area of your head where the skull fragment was removed. You must stay on light duty for the next six weeks until I completely clear you for regular duty at work. I will provide the appropriate documents for your employer. This is purely precautionary, and my preference even it is not a necessity,” he spoke with his eyes never leaving the chart, tapping different things as he spoke. The few times the doctor did look up, Varick noted his eye had a tic every now and then.
Everyone seemed relieved that Carrie was going home. Varick kept his eye on the young doctor, though. He was glad Carrie was being discharged, but even more than before he was worried about Kieran. He seemed more frazzled than the last time he’d seen him and he was exuding stress. As the girls talked, Varick moved over to him and tapped the clipboard where he was seemed to be staring vacantly. Kieran looked up into his blue eyes and looked like a deer in headlights, caught and unable to move.
“Um, yeah, can I help you with something? I-I am not in the mood to talk right now about…the ride thing… I can find you after I finish my rounds if you will stay here,” he said, the tic in his eye getting worse as he spoke. He nervously reached down and tugged on his scrub top. Varick was amused because it was a royal purple color, and had a subtle heart pattern in the fabric.
“You okay, doc? I mean, you’re looking rough around the edges,” Varick said with concern etched into his normally placid features. His concern was genuine because he saw Kieran as someone in need of help, and more than anything, he wanted to be the person who helped him.
The doctor looked surprised but nodded. “Yeah, just…I seem to have gotten more attention than I wanted after that interview I did on that radio show, and I…had to do…I did a TV interview on the news today to air tomorrow, and it made things worse.”
Kieran turned and quickly made his way out of the room as though escaping. Varick stepped out after him and watched as a girl nearly ran right into him. She was a petite girl, with her brunette hair in pigtails set high on her head, and she was wearing what looked like one of those sexy nurse Halloween costumes with stiletto heels and a face of heavy makeup. She was probably twenty, if that.
“Doctor! Dr. Sung!” she said with a grin. “You’re so cute! Please, let me have a chance! You’re wonderful! You need a girl like me, you really do! I’ll do whatever you want; I’ll be whatever you want! You can totally have your way with me!”
Kieran stepped back from her, crossing his arms tightly over his chest and clutching the clipboard so hard his fingers were turning white. His face was a mask of some sort of terrified anxiety, as he turned and yelled out.
“Dr. Santo!” he practically screeched.
A somewhat heavy-set doctor with glasses and black hair moved quickly toward her from of the nurses’ station. He growled under his breath and rolled his eyes in Kieran’s direction, pulling the woman off toward the elevator. He gave her a stern speech about the floor being only for patients and family and she was most certainly not allowed on the floor.
A second later a nurse with bobbed black hair and very stylized brows and eye liner came around from the nurse’s station. Varick wasn’t sure about this person’s gender, though…then he remembered the rooftop conversation about the nurse that Kieran had said was too girly for him. Ah, he thought, this must be him.
The nurse smiled sadly, and patted Kieran’s back. “Hey, another one, honey? This is getting ridiculous, I mean, you’re a successful doctor, and cute, so there’s no wonder, but still very rude to approach a stranger like that.”
Varick wandered over, trying to look uninterested and failing entirely. He nodded at the dark-haired nurse. He had a light sheen of natural looking make up other than the winged eye liner. He was very striking, Varick thought. “Who was that, doc?”
Kieran just stared straight ahead, hands clenching the clipboard to his chest. He looked at Varick for a second and turned and walked off, headed toward the stairwell again. The nurse beside him sighed.
“If we’d known doing that interview was going to incite the female, and half the male population, of St. Louis and the surrounding area, I’d have told Thomas to back off about it,” the nurse said, sighing deeply and looking the direction Kieran had gone. “Not that it would have helped to talk to Thomas.”
“What’s going on, anyway?” Varick asked. He turned toward the nurse, seeing his name badge read Hinto. Varick thought that he seemed to have some very curvy hips on him for a guy.
“Oh, seems that the terms ‘single’, ‘cute’, ‘doctor’ and ‘under thirty’ mean that Kieran is being assailed by young women, and a few young men, about dates. The poor thing has been beside himself over the last week. And he doesn’t even know about the really bad letters and calls…” he said and let out a long sigh. “Of course, maybe it had to do with him being on the same broadcast as a young heartthrob like Deangelo.”
Varick smirked as the man blushed and his eyes got faraway looking. Someone had a crush on the stage actor. “But then there was the major news station that Dr. McKellar insisted he do a St. Louis Spotlight appearance on. I thought it would be more than he could handle, but Dr. McKellar seemed to think it was good for him to do something outside his comfort zone.”
Hinto paused, glancing at Varick with a sidelong look, “But, if you ask me, there’s something fishy going on. All of sudden Dr. McKellar has all these appearances scheduled for Dr. Sung. I keep wondering who is actually getting paid for them…” he said, trailing off.
Varick frowned and started to respond, but Dr. Santo came back, huffing a bit. “Took the stairs, like you asked,” he said to Hinto and put his hand on his side. He took several deep breaths slowly.
“Good, you need to lose some weight for your own health, Danny, I’m planning on being married for a long time, and I don’t want you dropping dead of a heart attack before we’ve even gotten to the wedding,” Hinto responded. He wore a smirk, both of amusement at his fiancé’s pain and the fact that he done as Hinto had asked.
Dr. Santo heaved another breath. “Seven flights of stairs, all for my overly worried fiancé,” he muttered. “I’m not gonna drop dead in less than a year. I’m the doctor here, you know, corazon.”
Varick smiled at them. “Umm, so what happened to that girl anyway?” he asked as the doctor got his breath again.
“Tossed her ass back outside. Told security not to let her in again. Dammit, this is getting worse, not better. I think Dr. Sung’s going to blow a gasket if we can’t get them to leave him alone,” he grumbled. He looked up and smiled at Varick. “Anyway, I’m off stalker duty, Dr. Davis is coming down, he should be back before Dr. Sung comes back from wherever he went to hide for a bit.”
“Stalker duty?” Varick said with a quirked brow at the doctor.
“Yeah, what we lovingly call whoever is standing in shouting distance of Dr. Sung in case he gets assaulted by a rabid fan,” he said, snorting derisively. “Damn good thing the head nurse isn’t here today. Was bad enough that that asshole blogger was snooping around.”
Kieran shook his head and covered his face with his hands. In order to be able to reach in the back and put a hand on Kieran’s shoulder, Devan moved to kneel in the seat. Despite the rising panic in his own chest, he knew what he had to do. He had to be the person Kieran needed right now. And he knew only one way to do that.
“I can be in there with you,” he said quietly. “If you want, I’ve done this before,” he said, biting on his lip before he went on. "I…I know everything they’re going to do, and I can help you when they do it. But you got to do this, Kieran. You got to.”
Kieran looked up and locked eyes with Devan, glancing back and forth between the two colors. “You…you have?”
“It isn’t something I like to talk about, and I’ll tell you about it, after all this is done, I promise, but yeah. With me, it was someone that hurt me a lot, for a long time. I had finally gotten free of him, but he found me again…and…it was bad. I got really hurt and your grandfather took me to the hospital. I spent a long time in there too, because he did a number on me. Right now, you need to get in that hospital, and your father needs to know you’re alright,” Devan said with a small smile.
Kieran stared at him for a minute. “I…I cannot walk in there, I cannot…”
Varick squeezed him again about his upper arms. “We’ve got you.” Varick’s voice was strong and left no room for argument. “I promise, we’ve got you.”
Kieran nodded, pulling Devan’s jacket tight around him. “Okay,” he mumbled. “I am so confused, though. I did not know about him. Grandfather, that is. I should have seen it. He had a large group with him when he came to my mother’s funeral. I trust him. I do. He told me, when my mother died, that he would do anything for me. I…my father does not know this. He told me not to talk to him. But he gave me a phone number. I would call him occasionally.” Kieran paused and breathed deeply. “I do not know what to think now that I know he is a criminal.”
Smiling, Devan put a hand against Kieran’s cheek for a second. “No, don’t look so sad about that. Your grandfather, he is a good man. He’s a mobster, but mobs are families, and he took me in when I needed it. So, don’t doubt that he’s a good person. He cares about you. And that’s why you need to go in this hospital right now.”
“I think I am ready.” Kieran’s teeth dug into his bottom lip seemingly unconsciously. The wound on his lip reopened and blood began to drip again.
Carmine reached over to quickly wipe away the blood from his lip. Devan smiled as he saw Carmine’s finger linger for a second. He could see the need to protect Kieran growing within Carmine. No matter what two of them said about caring for Devan, he was certain the young doctor would capture their hearts and they would become a happy triad. That was fine though, Devan knew that he didn’t deserve such happiness; he knew a relationship like that was out of the realm of possibility for him. Devan never expected this “thing” to last as long as it had. His expectation had been that Carmine at least would have moved on by now. Liam had asked him to take care of Kieran, and the others were attached to him; he had to stay now because he said he’d protect and be there for Kieran.
Taking a steadying breath, Devan shimmied around to sit down again before he opened his door. He got out of the car and was hit with an intense chill. Damn, he thought, crossing his arms over his chest. His nipples were going to freeze off without his jacket to cover them. It was bad enough that the wind was cutting through his pants as well. He leaned over and opened Varick’s door so he could get out first. Varick slid out, shifting Kieran to the seat beside him. He then reached back in and lifted Kieran up into his arms as securely as he could. Kieran was wrapped up in the threadbare pink blanket that was tucked around his waist and covered his legs. With Devan’s jacket, his upper body was protected from the cold. Devan waited as Kieran wrapped his arms around Varick’s neck and buried his head there. Devan smirked, noting how easily Varick carried Kieran. Carmine had gotten out on the other side while Devan was helping Varick. Together, they walked toward the hospital.
As they walked from the far parking lot, Devan was lost in thought. Even though he was freely walking in to this hospital right into the hands of federal agents, he knew he was more than likely leaving in handcuffs. Despite what Liam had promised him, Devan was convinced there was nothing Liam could do to help him now. The thought set his heart racing. Would the Feds listen if he asked them not to put cuffs on him? He was sure he couldn’t handle that; handcuffs sent him into a panic.
As he led their small group, he straightened his back, letting part of his Domme surface; he definitely couldn’t do this without that part of himself. While he didn’t want to go into his female mode, he needed that confidence to get through this. He glanced behind him and saw Varick trying to shield Kieran as they walked into the emergency room. McKellar’s Emergency Room was set up with the entrance on the left side of the building. As they went through the double set of sliding doors, they were in front of the emergency room’s check in. The waiting area spread out from the right side, so Carmine moved up beside Varick to shield Kieran from being seen. Even though they were a group of four, no one had really noticed them yet, and for that, Devan was grateful. Kieran’s small stature had an advantage in that he was mostly covered from behind by Varick’s large frame.
Neraing the nurses’ station, the triage nurse didn’t bother to look up as she delivered an an obviously well-practiced speech. “Fill out the triage form, there’s a long wait this morning, so get comfortable. Unless its chest pains or breathing problems, you’ll be waiting a while.”
“It isn’t, but I think you need to get Dr. Sung for us.” Devan had no idea what Kieran’s father’s name was, but he figured the last name had to be Sung as well.
She looked up, confusion coloring her face. “Why in the world would you…want… Oh my God,” she whispered, her eyes locking on Kieran’s face behind Devan. “That’s… That’s… Oh my God…” She fumbled for the handset on the desk phone.
“Dr. Jae, to the ER nurses station, now,” she ordered into the speaker.
The phone rang after a few seconds, and she answered curtly. “Yes?” There was a pause as someone on the other end spoke.
“Sir… Some people are here… With your son…” She paused again, nodding as someone apparently gave her instructions. “Yes, sir. They’re at the triage station.” She put down the handset and stared at them for a second. “He’s on the way down,” she informed them.