by Winter

ATF Alternate Universe


Over they next few days JD's condition improved remarkably. Vin's progress was a little slower but he was doing much better since he had been moved in with JD. The two of them drove the nursing staff crazy when they were both in one of their moods. Today was no exception. Earlier in the day Vin had given the nurses a hard time when they came to give him a bath. They had also wanted to check his catheter but he fought them until they sedated him. X-rays had also been taken of JD's leg and the orthopedist could see it needed adjusting. Buck was there for the Kid as the pins were turned bringing the bone back in alignment. JD was given drugs to dull the pain but it didn't help and he cried out from the pain. Once they were done Buck was able to get him to go to sleep. Buck got comfortable in the chair and read the paper. He had been reading for a short time when Vin began to toss and turn. Buck got up and went to his side. He could see the younger man was dreaming.

"Hey, Pard, wake up," Buck called.

"JD!" Vin called, as he remained caught in his dream.

"Come on, Vin, wake up," Buck said grabbing his left arm.

Both JD and Vin were having bad dreams since the accident. The odd thing was Vin dreamed about JD and visa versa. Usually the dreams were pretty bad and they would wake up violently.

"JD, look out!" Vin yelled as he woke up and tried to sit up.

"Easy, Vin," Buck said as he held the slighter man in place.

"Aw hell!" Vin cried through teeth gritted from pain.

"Just relax Vin," Buck advised.

Vin's gripped on Buck's hand lessened as the pain did. Vin took a shuddering breath and let it out. Buck grabbed a towel and wiped the sweat from his face.

"Thanks, Buck," Vin said.

"Anytime," Buck smiled. "Want some water?"

"Yeah, thanks."

Buck filled a cup and handed it to Vin. Buck watched as Vin's hand shook holding the cup. Buck steadied the cup as Vin brought it to his lips. Buck didn't try to give Vin the water only steadied Vin's hand. He knew Vin was incredibly stubborn about someone helping him. When Vin drank his fill he let Buck take the cup from him.

"Bet that water tastes good," Buck said.

"Yeah it does," Vin smiled. "I'm just glad they finally took that damned tube out so I could take a drink."

"The nurses tell me you gave them a hard time earlier."

"I just don't like them fussing all the time," Vin grumbled.

"So was it the same dream?" Buck asked changing the subject.

"Yeah," Vin said closing his eyes. "I wish it would stop."

"It will," Buck predicted. "I think once they wean you two boys off all these medications they'll stop."

"I reckon you're right," Vin sighed looking at Buck.

"Hey ain't I always right," Buck teased trying to get Vin to forget about the dream.

"Yeah, right," Vin smirked at him than turned away from him.

"The accident wasn't your fault Vin," Buck said touching his arm.

"I know," Vin sighed not looking at Buck. "But I still feel responsible. He was riding with me."

"Vin, listen to me,"Buck said and waited for Vin to face him. "If he had been riding with anyone else JD would probably be dead."

"You know what Buck," Vin smiled. "You're full of shit."

"I know," Buck laughed. "But you love me anyway."


By the beginning of the next week the staff at the hospital were begging the doctors to let them go home. Vin was feeling well enough to pull practical jokes on some of the nurses. JD hadn't gotten on their good side either because he would help Vin with the jokes. They knew to pull their jokes on the newer members of the staff. The more veteran members of the staff sat back and watched the fun. Chris and Buck arrived at the hospital after one of their stunts. As they got closer to the nurses station they found Katherine, the head nurse, laughing so hard she was crying.

"Those two at it again?" Buck asked with his own mischievous smile.

"I don't know how those two do it," she laughed. "They scared one of the new nurses."

"You're to blame to you know," Chris accused. "You know what they're capable of and you always send the new ones in to check on them."

"It's only fair," Katherine argued. "I've paid my dues with those two pranksters."

"Come on let's go see what they've done this time," Chris sighed.

They walked in to find Vin picking very real looking plastic bugs out of his breakfast. JD was doing the same with his on his side of the room. As Chris got closer to Vin's bed he could see a large cockroach sticking out of the bandages wrapped around his chest.

"Howdy, Chris," Vin said as he dropped the last of the bugs in a jar.

"You forgot one," Chris said leaning over and pulling out the bug.

"Thanks," Vin said as he took it from Chris.

"God damned!" Buck yelled and JD started laughing.

Chris turned to them and saw Buck looking at the bandage on JD's arm. Sticking in the bandage was the back end of a nasty looking bug. The bandage around the bug was soaked with red.

"Alright, how'd you make the blood?" Buck demanded.

"They should know better than to give us ketchup with breakfast," JD laughed.

Buck laughed with him and Chris just shook his head. One of the others had to have brought the bugs for Vin but he knew it was useless to ask which one. As Chris and Buck helped them clean everything up Dr. Fitzpatrick walked in the room.

"Well you boys might be happy to know you're well enough to be released tomorrow," he said.

"This wouldn't have to do with their being rather difficult patients?" Chris asked.

"A little," he smiled. "I figured if they were both well enough to pull some of theses little jokes they could go home. Doesn't mean they can start running marathons. They still need to be restricted to bed. Especially Mr. Tanner."

"Aw hell," Vin mumbled.

"You have two choices Vin," Chris said. "Here in bed or at Buck's in bed."

"Buck's?" Vin said confused. "I thought for sure I'd be imprisoned at the ranch."

"We've been talking with the doctors and they said you would both need extensive physical therapy," Chris explained. "The ranch is too far away to lug your sorry ass back and forth so Buck volunteered the loft."

"That's great!" JD said enthusiastically.

"Are you sure you can handle both of them?" Dr. Fitzpatrick asked Buck.

"These two runts?" Buck laughed. "Piece of cake."

"Right, Buck," Vin smiled. "Who's going to watch you?"

"I am," Chris said menacingly and the three of them stopped smiling.

"Now that that's settled, I'll get together the things they'll need to go home," Dr. Fitzpatrick said as he went out.

Chris and Buck spent the rest of the morning wearing the two pranksters out.   When they left three hours later they were both sound asleep, which the nurses were very grateful for.


Around 11:00am the next day the rest of the team pulled up at the hospital and parked the cars. They had decided to take Josiah and Nathan's SUV's. They all walked into the hospital and headed for Vin and JD's room. When they walked in they found JD sitting in a wheelchair ready to go. Buck had brought him clothes the night before. He was dressed in one of Buck sweatshirts and running pants. The nurses had been skeptical about getting the running pants on until Buck showed them the zippers opened the all the way up the leg. Vin on the other hand wasn't even dressed yet. A couple of the nurses were struggling with an unresponsive sharpshooter. Chris walked over to give them a hand.

"What's wrong with him?" Chris asked as he helped with Vin.

"Dr. Fitzpatrick said moving him was going to hurt like hell so he gave him something for the pain," one of them answered.

"We'll take care of him," Chris told them as he motioned Ezra over.

"Thanks, Mr. Larabee, we'll get their papers."

"Well this should prove interesting," Ezra commented as he took Vin from Chris.

"Come on Vin," Chris said slapping his face lightly.

"Hey, Chris," Vin smiled lopsided as he tried to focus on Chris.

"Come on let's get you dressed," Chris said.

The nurses had been able to get him into his boxers so Chris grabbed the sweatpants and put them on his feet. Josiah came over to help Ezra get Vin standing as Chris pulled up the pants. Even with the heavy painkillers Vin stilled cried out when they stood him up. Once the pants were up they slipped a heavy terrycloth bathrobe on his good arm, draped the other arm over his busted shoulder and tied it in place. Once he was dressed they sat him in the other wheelchair. Vin leaned to the left on his good arm. The nurses returned and Chris signed both of them out. They were wheeled to the door and Josiah and Nathan went to get the trucks. JD was loaded into the back seat of Josiah's. With the metal cage still around his leg Buck made him stretch out along the back seat. JD winced as they maneuvered him into the back. Once he was settled it was Vin's turn. It was decided he would have to go in the back seat behind Nathan. He couldn't ride up front because the seatbelt would cut across his right shoulder. They pushed him over to the door and stopped.

"Vin," Chris said. "Just let us do all the work alright."

Vin nodded and they got started. Josiah stood in front of him and flipped up the footrest on the wheel chair. Vin put his feet down and Josiah asked if he was ready. He nodded and Josiah grabbed him around the waist and stood him up. Vin gritted his teeth and leaned his forehead against Josiah's chest breathing hard.

"Take it easy, Vin. We'll go slow," Josiah said in his soothing baritone holding on to him.

Once Vin was steady on his feet Josiah had him back up slowly until the back of his legs were against the car seat. Chris guided him from inside the truck and got Vin sitting on the seat. Josiah let go and picked up his legs and slowly swung them in behind the driver's seat. Vin had a death grip on Chris's hand as Josiah swung his legs in. Once he was in Vin leaned his head back against the headrest with his eyes closed and released Chris's hand. Chris reached over and grabbed the seatbelt and buckled him in. Nathan climbed in the driver's seat and Ezra rode shotgun. Buck and Josiah went back to his truck and they followed Nathan out of the parking lot. After a short while Vin was feeling better and opened his eyes.

"How ya feeling?" Chris asked.

"Like I been hit by a truck," Vin said.

"That, Mr. Tanner, is an understatement," Ezra said looking over his shoulder.

A short while later they pulled up to Buck and JD's loft complex. Nathan got out and ran ahead to open the outer door to the building. Luckily JD and Buck had one of the first floor lofts. On his way back out Nathan propped open the outer door. Buck already had a sleeping JD in his arm and was carrying him inside. Josiah pulled his SUV around so that the driver's side doors were closest to the walk. Josiah got out and opened Vin's door. Chris had already removed his seatbelt and Vin tried swinging his legs out on his own.

"Hold on there Vin, let me help you," Josiah scolded.

They got Vin out of the truck and standing on the walk. Chris grabbed his good arm and slung it over his shoulders and they slowly started the walk to the building. The others stayed close incase they were needed. They got Vin inside and headed for JD's bed room. The room had been turned into a make shift hospital room. Buck had already tuck JD in bed and helped them get the unresisting sharpshooter into the second bed. He was asleep before they even got him completely settled. They all went out into the living room and collapsed in various chairs and the couch.

"Damn, I'm glad that's over with," Buck sighed.

"Amen, Brother," Josiah said as he headed to the kitchen. "Who needs a beer."

A chorus of me's could be heard from the living room including Ezra. Josiah grabbed five beers and went back into the living room and passed them out. They called for a pizza delivery and had lunch. When they were done Josiah, Nathan and Ezra headed back to the office. Buck and Chris stayed to watch the other two.


By the time the weekend rolled around Vin and JD were doing much better and it was decided they would have a football party over at Buck's. Vin was in the Lazyboy with the chair half way reclined. Pillows were propped around his lower back and right shoulder. He could only get up if someone gave him a hand. JD was on the couch with his busted leg on the coffee table. Pillows were under his bad leg and he had the remote control and was surfing the stations. Chris and Buck were in the kitchen getting the food together.

There was a knock at the door.

"It's open!" Yelled JD and Vin together.

"You all are lucky it was us," Nathan scolded as he walked in followed by Josiah and Ezra.

"Who else would it be?" Vin asked.

"Yeah who else would be crazy enough to come here?" JD asked.

"Give it up, Brother Nate," Josiah said as he headed for the kitchen with his famous chili.

"That would be the sensible thing to do," Ezra agreed heading to the kitchen with his own bag.

It was finally time for the game and JD flipped to the right channel. Chips of all kinds were the first snack to be brought out. Chris knew Vin wasn't up to his normal consumption of junk food but he did eat some of the pretzels. The game was starting on the second quarter and Chris asked if anyone wanted the chili. They all said yes except for Vin and Ezra. Ezra had called earlier and asked if Vin wanted to share sushi with him figuring he wouldn't be up to Josiah three-alarm chili. Vin had agreed and Ezra stopped on the way over. Ezra followed Chris into the kitchen to give him a hand.

Chris dished out the chili and Ezra placed the sushi on two plates. Ezra found small bowls for the soy sauce and ginger. Neither Ezra nor Vin liked the wasabi mustard.

"Aw hell!" They heard Vin yell from the living room.

"What?" Chris asked as he rushed to the door.

"Dallas fumbled the damn ball," Vin lamented.

Chris relaxed. He had thought Vin was hurt when he heard him cry out. They finished getting all the fixing and headed out to the living room with the food. Chris passed out the chili and Ezra handed a plate of sushi to Vin.

"Thanks, Ez," Vin said as he took the plate.

"My pleasure, Vin," he said and placed a ginger ale on the table within Vin's reach.

By the time the fourth quarter started the chili was gone and they were down to just beer and more chips. They were all absorbed in the game except Ezra. He didn't really like football but was willing to put up with it to spend time with the others. He noticed that Vin had been quiet for awhile and glanced in his direction. Vin was asleep holding the can of ginger ale with the half empty sushi plate in his lap. Ezra got up and took the can out of his hand and grabbed the plate. He placed them on the floor and went into the bedroom to get a blanket. He came out and threw it over the sleeping sharp shooter. He picked up the plate and soda and headed for the kitchen. He put the dishes in the sink and decided to straighten up. He heard someone behind him and turned around.

"What can I get you, Mr. Larabee?" he asked.

"Nothing," Chris said. "Just wanted to say thanks for stopping to get sushi for you and Vin."

"Believe me, Mr. Larabee, it was my pleasure" Ezra said. "Eating that chili is the equivalent of gastronomic suicide."

"I suppose it's an acquired taste, "Chris smiled.

"Well it appears, Mr. Tanner, wasn't very hungry," Ezra said throwing away what he didn't finish. "If I had known he preferred the clams I would have partaken of a different variety."

"He ate enough," Chris said.

Chris helped Ezra straighten up the kitchen. When the game was over they decided to watch a movie. Buck let JD pick the one he wanted and he chose Kelly's Heroes with Clint Eastwood. In the middle of the movie Buck noticed JD was nodding off and decided to get him to bed before he fell asleep on the couch.

"Come on, JD, time for bed," Buck said standing and grabbing his crutches.

"Yeah I am kind of tired," JD said and swung his leg off the table.

Josiah gave JD a hand standing. Once he was on his feet Buck handed him the crutches and JD hobbled into the bedroom. Chris walked over to Vin and shook his left shoulder.

"Hey, cowboy, wake up," Chris called.

Vin mumbled something that Chris didn't catch and he gave him another shake.

Vin reluctantly opened his eyes and gave Chris a dirty look.   "Why can't you just leave me here,' he protested.

"Because you'll regret it in the morning," Nathan said.

They got Vin to his feet and he leaned on Chris as he helped him into the bedroom. Chris sat him on the bed and got him undressed. Buck was already tucking in JD. Buck continued to fuss with JD until he got angry.

"Enough already!" JD yelled swatting at Buck.

"Well that's gratitude," Buck said as he picked up something form the nightstand.

"What is that Buck?" Josiah asked.

"It's a baby monitor," Buck smiled. "This way I can hear Junior and the Kid up in my room."

"Ingenious," Ezra complimented.

"Why thank you Ezra," Buck said. "These two didn't appreciate my genius."

Vin just looked at JD and rolled his eyes. Finally the two of them were settled and the others left the room. After that the others decided they might as well go home. Buck saw them all to the door. Chris was the last to leave and stopped at the door.

"Sure you can handle them?" Chris asked.

"Easy, Chris," Buck smiled. "They both sleep through the night."


Chris nodded and headed for his Ram. Buck locked up then headed for his room and got ready for bed. He climbed in bed and turned out the lights. Vin woke up to a tingling in his fingers and toes. He wasn't sure how long he had been asleep but he felt hot and threw off the covers. When he threw off the covers he knocked over a cup that was on the nightstand. JD woke up when he heard the noise and looked over at Vin.

"You OK?" he asked.

"I don't think so," Vin answered.

"What do you mean?" JD asked.

"That Chaucer needs a new pair of socks," Vin mumbled.

"Vin you're not making any sense," JD said. "Chaucer's a horse he doesn't need socks."

JD figured Vin was drunk but that wasn't possible. He didn't have a beer tonight just soda. JD got scared when Vin started slurring his words and making even less sense.

"BUCK!" he yelled. "Get down here!"

Buck jerked awake when he heard JD yell. He threw the covers off and ran out of his room and down the stairs. He ran into JD's room and found JD sitting on the edge of Vin's bed.

"What's wrong?" he asked.

"I don't know, Buck, he's acting like he's drunk."

"That's impossible, JD, he didn't drink anything," Buck said as he got closer to the bed.

Buck sat on the other side of Vin and felt his forehead. It was a little warm but not anything to be alarmed about.

"Buck," Vin said in a scared voice. "My legs are numb."

"Shit!" he cursed getting up and heading for the door. "JD get Nathan and Josiah on the phone. Tell one of them to get over here to watch you while I run Vin to the hospital."

"I can take care of myself," JD said defensively.

"Don't argue with me JD!" Buck yelled. "Just do it!"

JD hobbled, on the crutches, out to the living room to see Buck pulling his sneakers on barefoot. He had on a pair of sweats but no shirt. When he was done tying his sneakers he jumped up and pulled on a jacket. He shoved his wallet in the pocket and grabbed the keys to his truck. Next to his keys was his cellphone and he stuffed that in is pocket as well. JD sat on the couch and picked up the phone as he watched Buck race back into his room.

"Nathan," JD said when he heard someone pick up. "Something wrong with Vin and Buck's taking him to the hospital. He wants you to come over and watch me. OK, I'll tell him."

JD hung up the phone just as Buck came out of the room carrying Vin. Vin was wrapped in one of the blankets from the bed and his head was resting on Buck's shoulder. JD could hear Vin mumbling but couldn't make out the words.

"Nathan's coming," JD said. "He said he'd call Josiah and Ezra when he gets here. What about Chris?"

"I'll call Chris as soon as I get Vin in the truck," he said as he went out the door. "Lock it."

JD did as Buck said and locked the door after he went out. He hated being left behind but Buck couldn't take them both. JD went back and had a seat on the couch to wait for Nathan.

Buck moved to his truck as quickly as he could. Vin was starting to scare him. Every once in awhile he was coherent and told Buck something else was going numb. When he got to the truck he opened the passenger door and laid Vin down across the seat. He bent his legs at the knees and placed his feet on the seat so he could shut the door. Once he was in he raced around to the driver's side and got in. He turned on the ignition then reached over to the glove box and pulled out his light ball. He slammed it on the dash and turned it on. He put the truck in gear and pulled out. Once he was on the road he pulled out the cellphone and called Chris.

"Come on, Come on!" Buck yelled. "Pick up the God damned phone!"

"Larabee," the voice said on the other end.

"Chris!" Buck cried in relief. "Get to the hospital fast! I'm on my way there now with Junior. Something's wrong but I don't know what I can't understand him. He said everything's going numb. Right, OK see you there."

Buck ended the call and looked down at Vin. He was moving his head from side to side and mumbling.

"Hang in there, Vin," he said as he went faster.


After hanging up the phone Chris ran back to his room to change. What the hell happened? He asked himself. I just left and he was fine. He finished lacing up his hiking boots and went out tot he living room. He grabbed his coat and keys then headed out the door. He ran around the front of the Ram and climbed in the driver's seat. He started the truck and leaned over to the glove compartment. Chris opened it and pulled out the light bball and placed it on the dash. He turned it on and put the truck into gear and drove away from the house. Ten minutes latter he was on the highway doing 80 MPH into the city.


When Ezra got home he decided it was too early to for bed and turned on the TV. He went to the kitchen and put on water for tea. When that was done he headed back to the living room and picked up the remote. He took a seat on the couch and began flipping through the channels. He stopped at PBS and watched Mystery. A few minutes later the teapot whistled and he got up to go to the kitchen, When he stood up his left foot felt like it had fallen asleep. He stomped and it began to tingle. He shrugged and started for the kitchen. He weaved his way to the stove and pulled a mug out of the cupboard. He turned off the stove and grabbed the teapot. When he did a burning sensation ran up his arm. He pulled his hand away and massaged his fingers.

"What in the world is going on?" he wondered out loud.

He decided to leave the tea and just to relax on the couch. When he turned to walk away he staggered and grabbed onto the counter. He realized the tingling was running up both his legs making it hard to stand. Ezra wasn't one to panic but he knew when something was wrong. He decided he better call for help. He clung to the counter as he made his way back to the living room. When he ran out of counter he staggered across to the phone. As he got closer his right leg gave out and he hit his head on the table holding the phone. The last thing Ezra heard as he began to black out was the annoying buzzing of the phone off the hook.


Buck cursed the city for doing construction at night. The quickest way to the hospital was blocked and not even his police credentials could get him through. He took the next available Street and raced down it. Buck realized he'd have to go ten blocks out of his way just to where he wanted to go. He glanced down at Vin and could see he was quiet. This alarmed Buck more than the rambling. He looked back at the road. And saw he had three blocks to go. When he got to the street he wanted he made a quick left than another one and headed back uptown. He was just glad there wasn't much traffic this time of the morning. He just had to go five blocks then turn right and the hospital was a straight run form there. Buck was concentrating on his driving when he heard Vin calling. He looked down and placed his right hand on his chest.

"Easy, Pard, we're almost there," Buck said.

"Hard to breathe," Vin wheezed.

"Shit!" Buck cursed. "Hold on, Vin, were almost there."

Buck slammed his hand down on the steering wheel. A drive that should have

taken twenty minutes had turned into forty. He made the right and did 70MPH down the street. He slowed as he got closer to the hospital and pulled into the emergency lane. He stopped and put the truck in park. He jumped out and raced to the passenger door and wrenched it open. He grabbed Vin and could see he was starting to gasp for air. He lifted the lean sharpshooter and headed through the doors.

"I need some help here!" he bellowed as he stormed in.

The nurses looked up and one moved quickly to help him. She checked Vin and saw the veins on the side of his neck sticking out as he tried to gulp for air.

"He's in respiratory arrest!" she yelled as she grabbed Buck and pulled him into a room.

Buck put Vin on the exam table and the doctors swarmed around him. On of the nurses took his arm and lead him out of the room.

"Come on, Buck, they'll do everything they can," she said.

Buck blinked and looked down to see Carmen leading him to the waiting room. Carmen was used to any member of the Magnificent Seven running in here with and injured partner. She sat Buck down and patted him on the shoulder before going back to her station. Buck leaned back in the chair ran his hands through his hair and took a deep breath. He let it out and tried to relax. He sat there for a few minutes than got up to move his truck. AS he headed for the door Chris rushed in.

"How is he?" Chris demanded

"No word yet," Buck answered. "I'm going to move my truck."

Chris watched Buck walk out then headed over to the waiting room and began to pace.


JD hated being left behind. He hated not knowing what was going on. He looked at the clock and saw Buck had only left fifteen minutes ago. He sighed and leaned back on the couch. His leg was killing him but he was too tired to get up so he could a painkiller.

"I'll just wait for Nathan," he said.

JD picked up the remote and turned on the TV. He really didn't want to watch anything but it was too quiet. He finished watching a Seinfeld episode and realized the Friends episode that came on after was almost over and Nathan wasn't there yet. He only lived fifteen minutes away. JD's imagination started conjuring all sorts of terrible scenarios for why he was late, when he heard a knock on the door.

"JD, it's Nathan."

JD sighed in relief and grabbed his crutches. He pulled himself off the couch and hobbled to the door.

"Sorry it took so long," Nathan said as he walked in. "They're doing construction all over the city."

"I was a little worried," JD said.

"Come on why don't you take a seat," Nathan suggested. "You don't look so good."

"Leg kinda hurts," JD admitted.

"I'll get one of your pain pills," Nathan said. He went over to the assortment of pill bottles on the counter. Nathan glanced through them to find JD painkillers. He didn't want to give him one of Vin's because they were much stronger. He found the right ones and dropped two in his hand. He grabbed a glass and filled it with water. When he was done he went back into the living room.

"Here ya go," Nathan said as he handed him them to JD. "I'm going to call Josiah and Ezra."

JD leaned back on the couch and listened as Nathan told Josiah what was going on. From this end of the conversation JD knew Josiah was heading over to the hospital. Nathan's call to Ezra was much shorter.

"Ezra's line is busy," Nathan grumbled. "Who's he talking to at this hour?"

"HE told me his moms in Europe," JD answered. "Maybe he's talking to her."

"I suppose."

"I wonder how Vin is doing?" JD asked.

"I don't know, we'll have to wait for Buck to call."

"I know but I hate waiting."

"So do I."

Nathan joined JD on the couch and they watched TV hoping the others would call.


Chris prowled the emergency room waiting for someone to tell him what was going on. He glanced at his watch and only ten minutes had gone by. Buck watched as Chris resumed his pacing. He was just about to tell him to take a seat when a doctor walked toward them. Buck jumped up as Chris saw the doctor and they both walked over to him.

"How is he?" Chris demanded.

"He stopped breathing," the doctor began. "We put him on a ventilator but we can't determine the cause of the repository failure. Can you tell me if he ate anything out of the ordinary that might have caused an allergic reaction"

"Vin's not allergic to anything that I know of," Chris said.

"Yeah that kid can eat just about anything," Buck offered.

"Let's try to narrow this down," The doctor suggested. "What did he have for dinner?"

"Sushi," Chris answered. "But he eats that all the time."

"Did it have shellfish?" the doctor asked. "Mussels, scallops or clams."

"Clams," Chris answered.

"Well I think you just narrowed it down," he said. "There's a food poisoning

from seafood called Paralytic Shellfish Poisoning. It causes respiratory paralysis and sometimes heart attacks if it isn't caught in time. Don't worry you got him here in plenty of time. He'll just have to stay on the ventilator until the toxins leave his system. I'll go run the tests to determine if that's what were dealing with."

"Oh shit!" Chris cursed. "Ezra."

"Damn," Buck said. "He ate the Sushi too."

"We have to get him here quickly," the doctor said.

The doctor saw some paramedics come out of one of the examining rooms.

"Tommy, are you back on call?" he asked.

"Yeah, Dr. Craft, why?" Tommy asked.

"One of you go with Tommy," Dr. Craft said. GO get your friend."

"Come on," Buck said grabbing the paramedic.

Chris watched as they ran out the doors. He just hoped they got to Ezra in time.


Buck gave directions to the driver and they headed for Ezra's townhouse. When they got to his street Buck pointed out which one it was. They stopped the ambulance in front of his door and Buck jumped out. He could see lights on and Buck the door was unlocked. He ran up the steps and tried the door and it turned in his hand. Buck pushed the door open and went inside.

"Ezra!" he yelled heading for the living room.

He could hear the TV on and went to check there first. As he came past the wall he found Ezra sprawled on his back with the phone next to him. Buck ran over and checked for a pulse. He sighed in relief when he found one. THE paramedics came in and wen to work on Ezra. Buck moved out of their way and searched for Ezra's keys. The undercover agent would never forgive him if he left the place unlocked. Buck saw then by the front door in a bowl on the table. The medics finished with Ezra and had him loaded on the gurney. Buck helped them out the door then locked it. They put Ezra in the ambulance and they pulled away. Buck watched the medics in the back checking on Ezra.

"Damn!" one yelled. "He stopped breathing."

Buck watched as he tried to get Ezra to breathe using a facemask and bulb. It didn't work and he said he had to tube him. Buck turned around and watched the road. He had seen enough of those to last a lifetime. The hospital was only a short distance away but it felt like an eternity to Buck. They pulled up to the hospital and Buck jumped out. Chris came out the doors followed by Josiah. They watched as the medics wheeled Ezra inside.

"Damn!" Chris said when he saw Ezra wasn't breathing.

'Come on let's go back inside." Josiah said.

"I better call JD," Buck said and Chris handed him his cellular.


Around dawn Vin and Ezra were finally wheeled up to ICU. Any residual traces of food had been flushed from their systems in the ER. Nathan and JD walked in to find the two agents hooked to every monitor imaginable. Josiah was sitting by an unconscious Ezra. Buck was sitting in a chair along the wall. And Chris was talking to a wide-awake Vin. Buck looked up when they entered.

"Hey, JD, how ya feeling?" Buck asked.

"I can't believe Nathan let me sleep," JD grumbled. "I should have been here with you."

"And done what?" Nathan asked.

"He's right," Buck said. "They only brought these two up a little while ago. Here take a seat."

Buck helped JD to sit and Nathan brought over another chair to prop his leg up. JD jumped when Vin started gagging one his breathing tube and setting off the monitors. The nurse came in and checked on him. She talked with Chris and patted his hand as she left. Nathan went over on the other side of Vin. He could see he was awake and not liking this one bit. Chris had a hold of his left hand and Nathan could see him trying to pull it out of Chris's grasp.

"He keep trying to pull the tube out?" Nathan asked.

"He tried once," Chris said and looked down at Vin.

Nathan smiled when he saw Vin try to out glare Chris. When Vin realized he wasn't going to win he tried to relax and closed his eyes. Nathan looked at all the monitors and saw that Vin's blood pressure was very low and that's why he wasn't sedated. He shook his head and realized Vin was just going to have to get used to the tube. Nathan went over and checked on Ezra. The undercover agent was in worse shape than Vin. Nathan figured since he ate more he must have gotten a worse case of the toxin.

"So what did the doctor have to say?" Nathan asked as he took a seat next to Buck.

"That this was a neurotoxin that affects motor functions," Chris stared.

That's why they both stopped breathing. It also causes paralysis to the extremities. He also said it would affect their potassium, magnesium and sodium levels."

"That ain't good," Nathan said worriedly.

"Why, Brother Nate?" Josiah asked.

Just as Nathan was about to answer Ezra heart began to race setting off the heart monitor. A few of the nurse came running and all hell broke loose.