Characters: Ryo, Dee, OCs.
Setting: After the manga.
Summary: Ryo suffers a nasty accident while in pursuit of a fleeing suspect.
Word Count: 1247
Written For: oneill’s prompt ‘Any, Any, How did you run / Into a door that's wide open?’ at fic_promptly.
Disclaimer: I don’t own FAKE, or the characters. They belong to the wonderful Sanami Matoh.
Lying flat on the sidewalk, seeing stars, Ryo wondered why these things always seemed to happen to him. He wasn’t clumsy, or not any more so than anyone else, and he wasn’t careless either, but still he seemed to be unaccountably accident prone, and usually at the worst possible times. Like now, for instance.
He and Dee had been chasing a suspect, Dee splitting off to go wide and hopefully get ahead of the fleeing man while Ryo kept on his heels, maybe ten metres between them. The sun was shining brightly, and perhaps that was what had caused the miscalculation. The light was being refracted back from doors and windows, making it hard to focus, and he didn’t have his sunglasses with him. They’d only been intending to question the guy so he hadn’t thought he’d need them, but… Well, when you go to question someone and they take off running, you have to assume they’re guilty of something.
Dodging through throngs of people on the busy street, the fugitive had taken a sharp left into a store, the door of which was standing wide open. Ryo, coming at the doorway from a different angle, had thought the door was hinged on the opposite side, an optical illusion making it look like the pane of glass was at the far side of the opening, when he discovered a moment too late that in fact it wasn’t. He’d run smack into it and rebounded, crashing to the ground and knocking all the wind out of himself, the only good thing being that he hadn’t cracked his skull open on the sidewalk. At least, he didn’t think he had.
His ears were ringing, or maybe that was the sound of the glass door reverberating. It was hard to be sure. He closed his eyes, lungs labouring; the wheezy sound he could hear was probably caused by his attempts to draw in a decent breath. A shadow fell over him suddenly, plunging him from almost painfully bright sunlight into a more comfortable dimness.
“Ryo? Ryo, you okay?”
He wished he could answer Dee, tell him he’d be fine, just give him a few minutes, but answering required breathing, and he still wasn’t doing too well on that score. He blinked instead, once for yes and twice for no; wasn’t that the usual code in this sort of situation? Only his eyes were watering from the impact, so instead of a single blink, it ended up being several as his eyelids tried to clear away the moisture that was clouding his vision.
“Don’t try to move,” Dee was saying. “Ambulance is on the way.”
Damnit! Ryo didn’t need an ambulance, and why wasn’t Dee still after the suspect? He was getting away! There was more wetness in his eyes and he blinked again. Dee snatched a box of tissues someone was offering, pulling out a wad and pressing them to Ryo’s forehead; it stung like crazy and the small amount of breath he’d managed to draw into his lungs hissed out again. He blinked as Dee carefully wiped away the blood that had been dripping into his eyes. Blood. Oh. That explained a few things; he must have cut himself on something.
The ambulance sirens were deafeningly loud and Ryo was very glad when they were shut off. He had a pounding headache, which probably wasn’t surprising. More people appeared in his field of vision, paramedics, going by their uniforms.
“Has he lost consciousness at all?” one of them asked Dee.
“Hard to say,” Dee replied. “He’s not exactly responsive.”
You wouldn’t be either if you were busy trying to remember how to breathe, Ryo thought grumpily. What did Dee expect of him? The breathing was finally getting a little easier though, so he tried words.
“’m fine.” It sounded a bit mushy, but reasonably intelligible.
“Hey, there you are!” Dee grinned down at him, although Ryo thought he looked, and sounded, a bit strained. “Had me worried there.”
“What happened?” the other paramedic asked.
“We were chasing a suspect; guy ran into the store, my partner tried to follow and ran smack into the plate glass door. It cracked where he hit his head on it.”
Cracked? Really? Wow, must have hit it pretty hard to crack it. Still, that explained the blood on his face. He was really lucky it had only cracked and not splintered; that would have been nasty.
The paramedics were putting a collar on him, then rolling him carefully to one side and sliding a board under him. Ryo wanted to ask if all that was really necessary, but the movement made him a little dizzy so instead he just shut his eyes. That seemed to help. When he opened them again he was in the ambulance and it was moving. One of the medics was talking to him, asking how he felt, and he managed to give the man a thumbs up. Thought he did anyway. He couldn’t see his hands, but he could just see Dee past the oxygen mask covering his mouth and nose, and his partner was grinning at him, so yes, he’d probably succeeded.
At the hospital there were x-rays of his back and neck, an MRI on his head, and then the cut on his forehead was cleaned and stitched. Dee was there for that, keeping out of the way but a comforting presence nonetheless. All the tests had been a bit nerve racking. Then a doctor appeared with the results, and she was smiling. Ryo felt himself starting to relax; it looked like good news.
“Everything’s come back clear, no fractures, although you do have a mild concussion, so I think you should stay in overnight for observation. I also want to make sure your lungs don’t go into spasm again, you had some trouble breathing for a while; nothing serious, but I’d like to keep you on oxygen for a few hours, your blood oxygen levels are still a little lower than I’d like. We can get this collar off though.” She suited actions to her words. “There, is that better?”
“Thanks.” His voice sounded hoarse. “Water?”
“Let’s get you sitting up a bit and then you can have some.”
Dee helped and soon Ryo was propped at a comfortable angle, with soft pillows to lean on. It felt like heaven after the hard board and constricting collar.
“How do you feel?” the doctor asked.
“I can give you something for that in a minute.”
Dee held a straw to his lips and Ryo sipped cool, blessedly soothing water. “Thanks.”
“No problem. Just how did you manage to run into a door that was wide open?”
“Optical illusion,” Ryo replied, feeling his cheeks heat up. “From where I was, it looked like the glass was the other side of the doorway.” He started to frown then thought better of it as the stitches in his forehead pulled. “Who makes a glass door that opens outwards onto a busy street?”
“Someone with no common sense,” Dee grumbled. “Soon as I get a chance I’ll have Health and Safety down on ‘em like a ton of bricks.”
“Bring me the complaint form and I’ll sign it,” Ryo said. “Just as soon as I can see straight.” He closed his eyes, smiling contentedly as he listened to Dee’s warm laughter. He had a feeling he was going to be very careful around glass doors and windows in future.