“Sir! You can’t go in there! Sir!”
Tony burst through the door into the Observation Unit, the receptionist in the front lobby scrambling to get out from behind her desk. The troll stormed down the row of assessment rooms glancing through the glass windows to see the occupants. The receptionist tried to repeat her previous assertion that he needed to check in before visiting any of the patients in the ER. A nurse stepped in front of him, but a growl and the sight of four hundred pounds of agitated troll sent her scurrying for cover.
“CODE WHITE. OBSERVATION. LEVEL 1,” came the announcement, repeated three times over the speakers and AR system.
A few worried visitors and medical staff poked their heads out various doors in the hallway, quickly ducking back in as Tony stormed by. The first security guard was just arriving at the reception desk when the mechanic found the room he wanted and barged through the door.
Clarisse was strapped to the gurney, her hospital gown soaked with sweat, vomit and other fluids. She writhed on the stretcher, screaming incoherently and looking terrified. Two orderlies were trying to hold her steady while a nurse was readying an injection. The three medical staff looked up in shock as Tony burst in, roaring in anguish as he saw his daughter.
The young woman renewed her struggles against the orderlies and restraints. She looked at Tony with little recognition, but slightly more coherence to her screams.
“NO! GRACE! WHY DID YOU HELP THEM? HAVE TO FIND SAM! GET OUT! WHERE?! LET ME UP! I’LL KILL YOU! NO, I CAN’T! GET OUT! WHERE IS SAM? DID THEY GET HIM? HELP ME! GET OUT OF MY HEAD! GETOUTGETOUTGETOUTGETOUT!”
Three security guards entered as Tony rushed up to the bed and the orderlies backed away. The troll tried to hold Clarisse’s hand, but the young woman only renewed her thrashing and rantings about Sam and Grace and Dying.
“Help her!”, he yelled at the nurse, who waited nearby with the syringe. “What’s wrong with my daughter?!”
She looked at him calmly and then glanced meaningfully at the security guards, who had spread out with stun batons at the ready.
“Sir, we are to help her. She has sustained a severe bio-neural shock and is delirious. I am trying to sedate her so she can be examined and treated. You need to leave now so we can work.”
The woman nodded to the orderlies, who resumed holding the young woman’s arms as she approached with the needle. Tony watched numbly as the security guards led him away and sternly explained that he would be able to visit once she was stable.
Clarisse’s rantings about finding out where Sam was continued, but began to fade as Tony returned to the reception area. He was seated in a quiet room, a security guard posted outside.
Who the fuck is Sam?, he thought. And what happened to Grace?
Maybe Frenchie knows what the hell is going on, came the inspiration and he pulled out his commlink…