The Bike

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Mystery and Crime  |  House: Booksie Classic
In this latest sequel to "If You Can Hear What I See," Jack Donovan has a mishap with a bike and ends up in the hospital. Facing major surgery, he finds himself in a life and death situation. Or does he?

Photo by Josh Nuttall on Unsplash

Submitted: July 13, 2019

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Submitted: July 13, 2019

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The  Bike

By

Brian Lee Clements

 

“Come on, Kate.  Time to get up.” Jack Donovan yelled to his wife.  “You don’t want to keep your patients waiting.”

 

Kate began slowly rousing out of bed as her body started to move.  Jack then opened the blinds and turned on the light while she covered her eyes from the brightness.

 

“Jack, I want to sleep a little longer.”

“You told me to wake you up at 5:30 and it’s now 5:31.  Move it or lose it.. It’s going to be a great day. You don’t want to miss it.”

“It doesn’t look like I will be missing much of it.  I’m even beating the sun up.”

“Not by much.  Coffee is brewing and toast will be ready by the time you come downstairs.  Hustle up.”

 

Kate can’t understand how Jack can be so bright eyed so early in the morning.  He’s always been like this since before they got married. It really helped her to get through Medical school and also her residency.

 

She knew that his faith in Christ has really helped him get through his hearing loss. She doesn’t know where they would be right now if it wasn’t for that.  In the meantime, Kate took her shower and got ready for work. One good thing about being a surgeon is trying to figure out what color scrubs to wear to work.

 

In the meantime, Jack got her toast and coffee ready. On the other hand, Sam, their daughter, was on summer break and still sleeping.  Meanwhile, Hans and Franz, their Dachshunds, were already up and did their business outside. They even got their morning exercise by chasing a couple of unhappy squirrels in the yard.

 

Kate finally came down and grabbed her toast and coffee.  But before she left, they said a quick prayer for each other.

 

“Be safe, dear.” Jack said

“Me?” Kate responded.  “You’re the one that always gets hurt. So, you-please be careful” 

“I’ll do my best”

“Unfortunately, your best doesn’t always work out”

“I’ll be careful. I promise”

 

Famous last words from Jack.

 

Jack knew that she was right.  In the past few years, Jack lost his hearing from a car bombing, separated his shoulder three times, got beaten up on a beach in Florida and was even held hostage.  Jack felt that not much more could happen to him. But you can never tell with Jack.

 

After trying to get Hanz and Franz settled inside after their second morning squirrel run, Jack saw them looking out the window and barking at something in the yard.

 

“Guys, I don’t see anything out there.  Oh, wait. I see another critter. It’s a racoon.  It doesn’t seem too scared with you looking at him through the window. Anyhow, if I let you out, that thing will rip the tar out of you and we all will be in trouble with Kate.”

 

After he said that, the dogs let out a small whine and settle down for a short nap.  Barking alway seemed to take a lot out of small dogs for some reason.

 

After they settled down, Jack went to his home office for a few minutes to check his emails to see if he had any new information on some of the new cases that he’d been working on.  A new one he just had was a missing person’s case from Tennessee where the person, David Allen, a runaway, was believed to be in Colorado. But nothing came up, so he decided to go on a walk around his neighborhood in the Mountain Shadow area.

 

A few weeks ago when he took a walk, he drove to The Cottonwood Creek Trail and happened upon a car crash that occurred in front of him.   That little escapade could have cost Jack his life if it wasn’t for his wife’s quick thinking. This neighborhood should be just as safe.

 

While walking, Jack looked at the scenery around him; the foothills of the Rockies, the bluffs behind the homes, and the small animals and deer that are always scurrying by the houses. Hopefully, there aren’t any larger animals watching him and smacking their lips.

 

As he was walking, his mind started to wander and somebody yells out to  him. Obviously, Jack couldn’t hear him.

 

“Mister, Get the hell out of the way you stupid idiot!”

 

All of a sudden, a bike ran into Jack and knocked him about ten feet on his shoulder and back and knocks the wind out of him.  Jack also felt about two or three snaps and pops in his right shoulder. That’s not good.

 

“Are you deaf?” the kid says to Jack.

 

The kid tried to get back on the bike but the wheel was bent.  He started to run and limp towards Ute Valley Park. An unusual hit and run.  Jack, on the other hand, tried to decide whether he should try to stand, sit up or just lay there.

 

“Oh, my god.  What the hell happened to me this time,” Jack said to himself.  “This can’t be happening again”

 

His right arm and shoulder had excruciating pain.  A lot worse than the last when he just separated it. Not sure if anything else felt any different except for the pain.  He had no idea how he’s going to explain everything to Kate this time. Also, since he was deaf, he was trying to figure out how to call 911.  Maybe he could try texting them. Hopefully that will work.

 

“Hi. 911?” Jack texted. “Are you receiving my text.”

“Yes sir, this is 911.” The text stated. “What is your emergency?”

“You’re not going to believe this, but I just got run over by a bicycle up on Vindicator and by Ute Valley Park”

“Are you okay?”

“Not really.  I think I just busted up my shoulder really bad.  Felt a pop and snap when I fell. I separated it a few weeks ago and  just got it all healed up.”

“How the bicyclist?”

“That’s the thing. I don’t know. He just started limping and tried to run towards Ute Valley Park after I fell.”

“Will you need medical?”

“Afraid so.”

“EMT should be there in two minutes.”

“Could you please let them know I am deaf?”

“They already know. For some reason, we have you in our records. Seems like you're a regular customer”

“Could you also notify my wife?”  She’s a doctor at St. Francis on Woodmen. Can I text you the number.”

“Yes, sir. We’ll do that for you. Her number is already in our system too for emergency call back.”

 

The fire truck and ambulance pulled up to Jack and the firemen and the EMT got out of the vehicles and started walking towards him.

 

“They’re here. Thank you, mam.”

“You’re welcome. Your wife’s been notified.  She’ll be in the Emergency Room waiting for you.

“Okay,”

 

Since the fire station was only a couple  blocks away, it only took them five minutes to get to him.  The fire personnel got out of the truck and started tending to his wounds. The ambulance got there 3 minutes later.  Even three police cars showed up. Must be a slow day.

 

Jack got checked out and his arm was put in a sling.  They then put him on a gurney, gave him and IV and sent him off to the hospital which was about ten miles away.  While sitting there, the ambulance attendant gave Jack a notepad in case he wanted to talk.

 

Jack tells him, “I won’t need the pad.  I can read lips pretty well, I don’t recognize you,  Are you new?”

“Only been an EMT for a few months, she said, “Enjoying it very much.  Are you a regular?”

“A few times.  I used to be a Springs detective a few years ago. I’m sure your new job has been interesting.  You even get to meet people that get run over by a bicycle.”

“This is my first one all right.”

“The driver yells to the back,”I had one bicycist a few years ago that had a collision with a moose.  He was in pretty bad shape. Moose was fine.”

“I’m going to take your vitals” as she smiles, “So try to relax.”

“I’ll try,” Jack said with a smile. “Unfortunately, I’m afraid didn't hear a word the driver said. Do you have frequent riding miles?” 

 

Jack’s phone then vibrated in his pocket and he picked it up and saw that it was a text from his wife.

 

“Hi, honey.  Are you alright?”

“Not really.” Jack responds. “Got run over by a bicycle.”

“I heard. How in the heck did that happen?  Didn’t you see it coming towards you?”

“Got hit from behind.  Didn’t know what was happening until I landed on my back.  Thought it was a car at first”

“Any injuries? Except for your pride of course.”

“Ha. Ha. (sarcasm) My shoulder is killing me this time.  Felt a few pops and then a snap. Afraid it might be broken this time.”

“Ok. I’ll be here waiting for you, Babe.  Dr. Robinson and I will be more gentle with you than last time.” 

“I can’t wait. Can you text Sam?”

“She already knows.  She heard the sirens and noticed you weren’t home.  So she called me right after 911 called me. She figured that sirens and her dad not home always means something.”

“I’m glad I got that vote of confidence. See you when we get there”

 

After Jack put his phone in his pocket, Jack started shivering like crazy.  He was wondering if he was going into shock. The EMT checked his vitals and then covered him with a blanket to keep him warm, which helped quite a bit.

 

When they got to the hospital, the emergency room took him in immediately.  To Jack, it looked like utter confusion. Not knowing what everybody was saying seemed to make it less stressful.  He could understand a little of what they were saying by reading their lips. But to do that, he could only concentrate on one or two individuals.

 

A few minutes later, his wife came into the room he was in.  She talked to the nurses for a couple of minutes. They then looked at him.  It was frustrating for Jack to not being able to hear what they were saying. She then walked to the bed and started rubbing his arm.  Her eyes started tearing up a little.

 

“Please don’t cry, honey.” Jack said softly.

“I’ll be fine.  I’m just worried about you.”

“This time, it wasn’t my fault. I swear”

“I know.  I don’t know what I’m going to do with you,”

“Wrap me in bubble wrap, I guess.”

“I don’t think they have anything strong enough for you.”

“Isn’t that the truth.  What’s going to happen next?”

“Well, I’ve already called an orthopedic surgeon.  He wanted you to get an MRI and x-ray to see how bad the damage is.  I mentioned to him that you’ve already separated it two or three times.  I lost count. You’ll probably will need surgery on your shoulder.

“What kind of surgery?”

“If it’s as bad as we think it is, complete restorative surgery.”

“When will I be able to go home?”

“You’ll be here tonight for observation.  No telling what happened with that noggin of yours. Surgery tomorrow. If everything goes well, then home the day after that

“If?”

“It’s major surgery.  I’ll be here with you the whole time.  I’ve already informed the hospital and my patients that I will be out for at least three day.”

“Thanks. When was the last time I said that I loved you?”

“Not since this morning.  I love you too. They’ll be taking you to your room in a few minutes, I meet you there.”

 

Kate gave Jack a smile and a kiss on the lips and headed to her office to change her clothes.  She always kept a couple of outfits in her office, just in case.

 

In the meantime, Jack laid in the bed and started thinking about what the hell happened.  One thing that kept bothering him was the accident and why was that person in such a hurry and didn’t stop to help him.  Was he chasing somebody or was he being chased? Was he in a hurry for a job interview? Not in Ute Valley Park, of course. Did he have an important meeting there?  So many different scenarios.

 

Luckily, since he was getting bored, the drapes were opened and Jack could see what was going on. While watching, another ambulance arrived and brings somebody in on a gurney.  The EMT’S had the person on a respirator and doing CPR on him. Jack thought its was a man. He tried to figure out what’s going on. But, no dice. Hard when you can’t hear.

 

A doctor goes up to them and asked, “What happened to him”

“Gunshot wound to the buttocks and a snake bite right forearm.  Most likely rattlesnake. We secured his arm so he couldn’t use it.  The bandage has some of the venom on it.”

“Good job.  Thanks. Probably save his life.”

 

Kate then comes back and closed the drapes behind her.  She was wearing a pink oxford shirt, blue jeans and tennis shoes like she used to do in high school.  But she was also wearing her lab coat over it.

 

“Why did you do that?  It was getting interesting.  What’s going on out there?” Jack asked.

“With what?”

“That guy out there in the Star Trek T-shirt.  I think it might be the guy who ran me over.”

“You sure?  You said it happened so fast.  You also said that he ran off. Did you see his face?”

“No, just his shirt.”

“Are you sure?”

“How many people do you think are running around Colorado Springs in a yellow Star Trek shirt?

“Maybe a couple.  I don’t know. Let me go see where they found him.”

 

Kate stepped out to find out and left the drapes open to help Jack with his curiosity .  Jack watched what was happening in the hallway and noticed that a couple of police officers and detectives show up.  Since Jack knew the detectives, he tried to hide his face but it was too late as one of them headed toward his room.

 

“Hi, Jack. What are you doing here?” The Sergeant asked. 

“You’re not going to believe this, but I got run over by a bicycle.”

“I heard. Saw Kate when I came in and she filled me in.”

“What are you doing here?”

“We’re here for the shooting at Ute Valley Park.”

“There was a shooting there? When?”

“About an hour ago.  Ute Valley Park. We’re checking on the victim.  He was wearing a yellow shirt.”

“I saw him come in.  I think he was the one that ran me over on his bike.  He then tried to leave like a bat out of hell.”

“Really? I hear he’s not doing well right now.  From what I understand, he was also bitten by a rattlesnake.”

“That gotta hurt.”

 

The other detective came over and whispered in the Sergeant’s ear and they excused themselves. Jack’s curiosity is really getting to him now.  He kept looking out the room when an orderly came and close the drapes again. When that happened, he slowly gets out of the bed and stretched himself so he won’t pull the I.V or instruments out.  He managed to open the drap just enough to look out. As he was looking, the two detectives stepped out and started looking at Jack. They then came back to his room.

 

“Hi again, Jack.  We were wondering if you’ve ever met the guy in the other room.  He claims you pushed him off the bike.”

‘Never met him before.  I was heading north on Centennial about to go on Vindicator and he ran into me from behind.  Didn’t know what happened until I was on my back.”

“So, he came from the south.  Obviously, you didn’t hear anything due to your hearing.”

 

The Sergeant then told the other detective, “Jack here was one of our best detectives until he lost his hearing due to a car bomb. You were his replacement.”

“Jack,” the other detective said, “I heard a lot about you.  You’re a legend at the department.”

“Thanks, I think.  What was that all about with the guy that ran me over?”

“We think he was a burglar that was in the area.  There’s been a rash of them lately. Officers found a Swiss Army watch where you had your accident.  When he crashed, we assume a couple of items fell out and he tried to pick up what he saw and hobbled over to the park.  That was when he got shot and then while running away, he got bit by that snake”

“Wow, talk about bad luck.  I didn’t see anything on the ground.  Did you figure out who shot him?”

“Not yet.  That’s why we’re talking to you. Wondering if you saw something or not.”

“Afraid not.  By the time I contacted 911, I wasn’t noticing much of my surroundings.  I was Just worried if they will get to me in time and how I was going to explain everything to Kate.”

 

By that time, an orderly came by to take Jack to his room.

 

“By the way, Jack.  How did you get in touch with 911, with your hearing the way it is.”

“I texted them. I didn’t know if it would work.”

“From what I heard, it worked pretty good. Talk to you later, Jack.  We may have a few more questions.”

 

After they left, the orderly looked at Jack and handed him the gown that he needed to put on.  He looked and smiled at the orderly and slowly changes. The orderly stayed in the room just in case Jack lost his balance and decided to fall.  But eventually Jack got changed, but, as most people, is embarrassed with his butt sticking out the back. He held the back of the gown tight as he tried to get on the gurney that the orderly bought for him.  Not a pretty sight.

 

As they went to the room, Jack started thinking again about the bike crash and what happened.  What house did he come from? With the direction he was coming, the closest house was about a mile away. Why was he going so fast?  Jack has so many questions but, at the current time, was unable to do anything about them.

 

But something is wrong.  The orderly seems to be taking Jack the long way to his room.  But he doesn’t know what room number he is supposed to be going to.  Jack then tries to get his attention,

 

“Are you new here? I think we might be going the wrong way to the room,  What room number are we heading to?”

The orderly says, “Shut up!”

“I can’t hear a word you’re saying. As you can see on my chart, I’m deaf.

 

Jack then noticed that there was no chart with him.  He’s now trying to decide what his next move should be. As he’s pondering, the gurney came to a halt and two nurses appear around the corner towards him.

“Sir,” one of the nurses asked, “What are you doing here by yourself?”

“Good question.” Jack responded.  “I was with an orderly who suddenly disappears and left me here.

“Where were you heading?”

“I have no idea.”

 

One of the nurses looked at his name badge on his arm and called on the phone.  After a minute, He came back and started talking.

 

“Mr. Donovan, your wife has no idea where you are and is looking for you.  Are you ok?

“Yes I am.  Is my wife ok?

“Yes, she is, but a  little worried. We’ll get you to your room.  Does this happen to you often?

“Getting lost in a hospital?”  First time today.”

 

They finally got to the room where Kate was waiting for him Jack wasn’t sure how to make out the look on her face.  Was she mad, worried or both?

 

“Where were you?”

“We found him in the hallway on the fourth floor.  Is the husband you keep telling us about?” The nurse asked.

“Yes it is.” she said with a laugh. Thank you for finding him and bring him back.  He has a tendency to wander.”

“Not this time. An orderly took me and left me on the wrong floor.”

“Whoever it was, he wasn’t the orderly that was supposed to take you to your room, but Danny got called away on a bogus call.  When he came back, he couldn’t find you and he called for me.”

“I wonder who that guy was?”

“Can’t worry about that now, Jack.  They’re coming to get you in a few minutes for your x-rays, so let's get you to your room.”

“He wasn’t very chatty.  If he was, I couldn’t hear him.”

 

 

Well, they finally got him settled room. One thing Jack liked about this hospital was that all of the rooms were  private. He can have anything on the tv without anybody complaining. After turning it on, he turned off the sound and turned on the closed captioning  A few minutes later, his wife came into the room.

 

“How are you feeling, babe?

“I guess ok/  As well as I can be expected.”

Kate holds Jacks hand and says, “Hopefully, they’ll come for you to take you to x-ray and then they’ll come and get you for your MRI  around two. Why don’t you get some rest while you’re waiting?”

 “I can’t. I’m too worked up.”

“I know I shouldn’t tell you this, but the bicyclist also will be here for a few days.”

“Yeah? Which room”

 

Kate paused a few seconds wondering if she should tell him.

 

“Right across the hall from you.  Promise me you won’t bother him.”

“Yes, dear. What if he comes over here?

“I guess you can then.”

 

Over the next few hours, the x-ray and MRI were done.  Jack also got into the habit of being interrupted by nurses, technicians and people that want to stick needles into him.  Jack hates needles. Then it was time for dinner. To tell you the truth, the food wasn’t too bad. But the raspberry Jello was the best.

 

For some reason, staying in the hospital was the only time he got Jello and he enjoyed it so much.  Maybe he can get Kate or Sam to make him some. On second thought, maybe he should do it himself. Both of them don’t like to cook.

 

Midnight came around and Jack was still laying there wide awake with his heart beating a mile a minute and his brain racing.  He began to realize that he wasn’t going to get any sleep. So he buzzed the nurses station hoping that they can give him something.  Hopefully they’ll realize that he can’t hear them on the intercom. A nurse enters the room about five minutes later.

 

“Hello, Mr. Donovan.  How can I help you?”

“Well, as you can see, I’m not sleeping yet.  Is there anything you can give me to help me sleep?

“Let me check your chart real quick.” As the nurse checked her computer. “Since you are having surgery tomorrowI can give you a small dose of Triazolam.  You should sleep for about five hours when it will be time to get you ready.”

“Thanks”

 

The nurse returns with the medication and Jack and Jack gulps it down really quick.  He’s hoping that it takes affect really quickly. After laying there for a half hour, Jack gets up to go to the bathroom.  He put his robe on and took a short walk around the hallway. 

 

While walking, he decided to take a peek where the bicyclist was staying.  He looked in the room and noticed that he was also awake. So Jack decided to start a conversation with him.

 

“Hi, I’m Jack Donovan, your neighbor across the hallway.”

“I’m Dave Allen.”

 

Jack recalls the name of David Allen from an earlier missing person’s case this morning.

He starts to think that this is too easy.

 

“I think we ran into each other earlier today up on Vindicator near the park.”

“Was that you? Sorry about what happened.”

“Why did you run off?

“My partner was trying to kill me.  So, I got out as fast as I can.

“Not fast enough.  I understand you got shot.”

“Yea. Right in the ass.”

“What the guy look like?”

“Don’t need to describe him.  He’s right behind you.”

 

Before Jack turned around, he grabbed a bedpan with his left hand and turned around.  With it behind his back, he noticed that it was the “orderly” that was supposedly taking him to his room earlier in the day.  Except this time, he was holding a knife. 

 

Jack then swung the bedpan and hit the guy in the face with it.  Luckily there wasn’t anything in it. The guy dropped the knife and it landed under the bed.  Jack then pushed the guy out into the hallway and landed on top of him. The guy got up with Jack trying to hang on for dear life.  Unfortunately, Jack can only hang with one good arm. He’s finally was able to get behind the guy with his good arm around his neck.

 

Jack continued to hang on as he is pushed against the wall.  Surprisingly, none of the nurses heard what’s going on. With Jack holding on tightly , the intruder eventually headed out into the stairwell and kept running into the walls to knock Jack off his back.  Jack then decided to try to tangle the legs together. When he did, they both tumble down the stairs. As they fall, Jack is able to hold on. He doesn’t know how. Eventually, they ended up at the bottom of the flight of stars.

 

Jack was breathing heavily and eventually lets go of the intruder.  The guy wasn’t moving and Jack decided to check for his pulse. Nothing.  Most likely a broken neck. Jack sits on the stairs for a few minutes while he catches his breathe.  With his legs feeling so weak, he decided to go down one floor and tell on tell one of the nurses what happened.

 

He got to the floor and saw the nurses desk and waved one of them over.

 

“Are you all right, sir.” as she looks at his armband and checks his pulse.  “Mr. Donovan, they’re looking all over for you right now. Your heart is racing like crazy.”

“I was just in the stairwell and you need to-”

“No, no, no. you’re probably just sleepwalking.  We need to get you back upstairs.”

 

She grabs a wheelchair and gets an orderly to take him upstairs.  The orderly eventually gets him back bed.

 

“You stay here.” the orderly says.  I don’t want to have to restrain you.”

“But..but”

“No buts either.  Do you have to go to the bathroom?”

“Afraid not.”

 

After the orderly left, his neighbor came over, looked at Jack, smiled and shook his head.

 

“Are you that deaf private detective I’ve been hearing about?”

“Yes, I’m afraid so..”

“What happened out there?  I didn’t see what was going on.”

“I don’t know.  I was told I was sleepwalking.”

“I doubt that.  What’s your latest case?

“Well, David. You won’t believe this, but you are.

“Uh? I don’t understand.”

“Your parents hired me to look for you.”

“They did? I didn’t think they cared”

“Oh, they care.  Do you know what you need to do?”

“Call them? I don’t know what to say to them”

“How about ‘Hi. I’m coming home’.”

“That sounds easy. 

“Easier than you realize.  Do you have a phone?”

“Yea.”

“Why don’t you call them right now”

“I guess.  But they’re be sleeping.”

“I would want my daughter to call me, no matter what time it was.”

“Okay, I’ll do it right now.”

“Let me know how it goes.  I’m going to try to get some sleep.

 

David left the room and Jack finally got to sleep.  Unfortunately, it seemed like only a few minutes when he was woken by Kate.

 

“Hi honey.  It’s seven. Time to get up. Unlike you, I won’t open the blinds.”

“Thank you.  Wow. I was sleeping so sound.”

“You missed all of the excitement.”

“What excitement?”

“They found a body in the stairwell this morning.  Looks like he tripped and fell. Broke his neck. Also, I was told you were found sleepwalking on the floor below.  How did you get there?”

“I have no idea.  Whatever they gave me knocked me out.

“Triazolam will do that to you.  It can also give you Retrograde Amnesia while you take it.”

“You mean like in the movie, 50 First Dates?”

“Don’t worry. It’s only temporary.  I don’t need an injury prone detective with amnesia on my hands.”

“What’s on the agenda for today?”

“Your surgery is scheduled for ten thirty. So, no breakfast. I almost forgot to tell you, your neighbor across the hall wanted to thank you for what you did last night. When he gets out of the hospital he’s going back home to Tennessee.

“Who was that?”

“David Allen. You don’t remember talking to him?”

“No, I don’t. I think that name was one of my cases I was working on.  Missing person, I believe”

“That medication really did you in.”

“I guess.”

“Let me get some toast and coffee.  You can watch. In the meantime, go to the bathroom and I’ll be back.”

 

When Jack got back to bed, Kate returns with the toast and coffee.  It smelled great. The started talking about his long recovery and what they will need to do. 

 

While they are talking, asked himself, “What in the hell happened?”


 




 


© Copyright 2019 Brian Lee Clements. All rights reserved.

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