(If you havn't read "Proper drama, ER-style" yet, scroll down and read it first. Put the kettle on. It's not short.)
"Let me in," read the text.
"B!" I hollered to my flatmate. "He's downstairs, can you let him in please?!"
From where I lay on my bed I heard the door to the flat slam as B willingly trundled downstairs to let the good doctor in. I had managed to take a shower (had to remove the aroma of the tideway before Doc arrived), and had collapsed rigidly on my bed. Lying on my back with a pillow under my knees I listened to the painfully beautiful operatic soprano of 15th century Christmas music and wept quietly. A moment later I heard a familiar voice.
In walked... an angel. 6 feet tall, sandy hair on the verge of going salt-and-pepper, athletic physique. It's no exageration to say that the doctor who stood beside me makes George Clooney look like a wet dishrag. Real life is so much better than TV drama. (You're reading this, I know you are. Are you embarassed? Don't be. I'm trying not to gush too much, but it's difficult.)
He sat down on the side of the bed and began asking me all the necessary questions: where, when, how, etc. I told the story for the umpteenth time already that day. He made me stand and bend over (which hurt like a bitch), and then did all the touchy feely pressy things on my spine while I lay on my stomach (which hurt even more).
The diagnosis? (Correct me if I get this wrong; i probably will.) I've got a tiny rupture in one of the disks in my spine, and a small amount of fluid burst out. I think that's it. He said something about a jelly-egg and a fried donut, but it's all a bit hazy at this point. What I do remember (and this is the important bit anyway) was that he said the injury wasn't all tha serious but the symptoms were exaggerated becuase I had to go and be "a goddamn hero" and row on it. But there was no reason to think that it would be a career-stopping injury, which was my worst nightmare. I cried a little from sheer relief.
He'd brought with him a handful of drugs to numb the pain and keep the surrounding muscles from going in to spasms, powerful opiates that made my head swim. When I'd taken one of the tablets the doctoring bit was concluded. Having done all he could for the "minor discomfort" (as the medical profession calls it), he proceeded to adress my emotional needs. He laid down on the bed next to me and took me in his arms, holding me gingerly while stroking my hair and telling me everything would be fine. How I needed to hear that! I snuggled my face against his hard chest and let my mind go. I didn't think about the questionable ethics of the situation, I didn't think about rowing, about the Pirate; I didn't think about anything. I felt safe and protected and cared-for, and that was all that mattered. Honestly, that brief snuggle did me more good than all the drugs and pain-killers.
After a few minutes he got up, turned off the light, picked up his case, and left. He was a man, take him for all in all; I shall not look upon his like again.