Sam wasnt even two minutes into the EEG when he started to feel pins and needles assault him. He looked at Al, who was checking the hand link.
Al nodded. Let the leaping begin.
Rosco was starting to feel like swirled oatmeal as the acceleration chamber
started to do its thing. The intense blue light forced Rosco
to close his eyes and in a brief second he blacked out. When he came
to, it seemed like an eternity had passed and the blue light faded.
He had a few moments to realize he was on the ground, behind one of
the patrol cars, his shoulder aching from having hit something and
his arm was around somebody. Before he blacked out again he heard her
Doc Appleby and two of his colleagues who were helping with the EEG were
staring in shock at the readouts there were getting.
Holy mackerel, the younger of the two doctors exclaimed. I dont understand it, whats happening?
Doc Appleby was watching the heart monitor and the numbers as they suddenly dropped. His heart rate and pulse are dropping. He looked over at Rosco, whos eyes were closed and was very pale. Get a trauma team down here now!
As one of the doctors rushed to pick up the phone, Doc Appleby quickly left the room to let family know what was happening.
Boss and Lulu were standing next to each other by some of the chairs in the waiting area. The Duke family was seated across from them. Boss had just closed the lid on his gold pocket watch when he saw the Doc come rushing in.
J.D., Lulu." He paused. "Somethings wrong.
What? What do you mean somethings wrong? Boss asked.
I think this is 'it.'
WHAT?!?! A voice exclaimed from behind Boss and Lulu. MaryAnne bolted out of her chair and came between them. It? You mean hes dying?
Im afraid so.
Boss put his arm around MaryAnne as the Duke family suddenly gathered around.
Ive called for a trauma team. Theres nothing I can do. We were getting some very strange readings on the EEG and then his heart rate and pulse just dropped suddenly. I cant explain it.
Oh my God, MaryAnne sobbed, bringing her hands to her face. Oh no, no, no...
Al watched in concern as the trauma team tended to his friend. He glanced
at the handlink briefly, seeing that the targeted leap had been successful
and that MaryAnne was alive.
But what about Sam? And the Sheriff now? he asked.
The computer made no response.
Al still received no answer.
Suddenly he heard the sound of a flatliner. He looked at the trauma team as they started to perform CPR.
Beep! Beep! Beep!
The heart monitor continued the steady beep. The trauma team watched in awe as the heart rate and pulse started to slowly yet steadily climb.
"I don't believe it," one of the trauma team members exclaimed. He fixed his stethoscope to his ears and listened to the steady, strong beat of Rosco's heart. He smiled at his colleagues who breathed a sigh of relief.
Al was quite relieved as well.
"Dr. Beckett and Sheriff Coltrane are fine," Ziggy finally said.
Al looked at the handlink. "Thank you, Ziggy."
When Rosco came to again, he felt the hard pavement against his back.
Somebody had there arm under his neck and a hand on his upper right
arm. He opened his eyes to see what seemed like half the town of Hazzard
surrounding him and looking at him in concern.
And it was MaryAnne who was holding him.
He looked at her, and for some reason was ecstatic to see her. It was as if she had gone away for awhile and was finally home again.
"MaryAnne," he said, moving his arm to touch her to see if she was really real.
She smiled as a tear escaped her eye. "You allright?" she asked.
He nodded. "I'm fine, but I think I'm supposed to be asking you that question tho'."
MaryAnne giggled. "I'm talking to ya, ain't I?"
He smiled and looked at her face, relieved that she was okay and alive. Especially that she was alive. For some reason, he couldn't shake the horrible thought of her having died or been killed. It was like a nightmare that suddenly surfaced, and would not easily go away.
"Are you sure you're okay?" she asked.
He nodded tightening his grip on her arm. "I'm fine, MaryAnne." He smiled. "I'm fine."
MaryAnne, Boss and Lulu went with Doc, figuring this was going to be
the last time they would say good bye to Rosco. MaryAnne was a wreck
and Boss had to hold her up by the waist as they walked down the hall.
MaryAnne felt so helpless. After Rosco had saved her life just a few
weeks earlier, she could do nothing to return the favor now.
Before they got to the room, one of the other doctors came rushing down the hall.
"He's allright!" he exclaimed. "Damn wildest spectacle I've ever seen but he's okay and alive."
MaryAnne stared at the doctor. "He's--He's okay??" She looked at Boss, grabbing one of the lapels of his white coat. "Did you hear that?!"
"I heard it!" Boss replied with Lulu crying in relief.
"Oh Praise the Lord!" MaryAnne exclaimed and smiled wide enough to cover from ear to ear. "Can we see him?"
"In a little bit. We're going to move him to a room so he can rest, which means only one of you can see him at a time and just for a short amount of time."
MaryAnne nodded. "Okay," she said. "Oh just seeing him okay is all I ask for."
* * *
When Sam opened his eyes, he immediately recognized where he was and
could recall what had been happening. But the leapee, Sheriff Rosco
P. Coltrane, was not as complete to him now as before. The residuals
were a little fainter and the images
recognizable but not very clear.
The room was empty, except for the Admiral, who stood by the hospital bed.
Sam looked at him. "Did it work?"
Al nodded. "MaryAnne's alive."
"How come I didn't leap?"
"I don't know. There must still be something left for you to do."
"But she's alive and well?"
"Alive, well and on her way to see her cousin right now. But how do you feel?"
"Fine. Unfortunately I don't know as much about Rosco now as I did before."
Al nodded. "A lot of him got pulled out of you. What are you getting for residuals now?"
Sam paused and then shook his head. "Not much at the moment. He's tired and I think he's going to remember pieces of what happened and it could bother him a bit."
"Yeah, but I think he'll eventually dismiss it as a bad dream and just be thankful that MaryAnne's alive."
Sam looked at his friend and smiled. "Very thankful."
There was a light knock on the door and Sam turned to look. He watched as MaryAnne poked her head in and looked over to him. Her smile lit up in fireworks and she came into the room.
Sam smiled too. So THIS is the young lady that all this leaping around was for, Sam thought as he looked at her. Since he didn't remember the first leap, this was the first time Sam had met MaryAnne. The same emotions that he had felt from Rosco earlier about her came back and Sam knew that he had been right in having to set things right. The young woman meant a great deal to Rosco, and losing her would have all but ended his life.
MaryAnne leaned over to Sam and gave him a hug. "I'm so glad you're okay," she said and looked at him. "Doc Appleby thought you were gonna die."
"Yeah. Oh I'm so relieved he was wrong." She hugged him again, tightly.
Sam looked over at Al, who nodded.
"When did all of this happen?" he asked MaryAnne.
"Right in the middle of the EEG, she replied. Doc said he was getting these really strange readouts and then all of a sudden your pulse dropped. You've really got him and a lot of other doctors here concerned, Rosco. The Doc wants to try the EEG again in a few weeks but he wants you to rest for now. And I mean REST, which means taking time off from work."
"MaryAnne, I can't--"
"Oh yes you can. Now me and Cletus can handle everything just fine. I want you healthy and alive, Rosco and I don't want any arguing about it."
From the faint residuals Sam got, he could tell that although Rosco didn't mind taking time off, he was concerned if it was going to be PAID time off. Boss Hogg had never allowed paid leave before, but maybe this would be an exception. Sam could also tell that arguing with MaryAnne about it would be pointless.
"Alright," Sam said. "But how long would it be for?"
"Probably just a few days. Considering what we've been through the past few weeks I think it would do you some good."
"Well, what about you?"
"I ain't the one having the headaches," she said seriously. "Rosco, I'm worried about you."
"You don't have anything to worry about, MaryAnne. Everything's going to be fine soon."
MaryAnne looked at her cousin. His blue eyes were clear and reflected the certainty that things would be okay and for some reason, a part of her believed him, although she wasn't sure how he knew. She smiled and pushed a stray lock of his gray hair off his forehead.
"I hope you're right," she said.
"You'll see," Sam said. "Things will be back to normal very soon."
She smiled again. "Alright, Rosco, I'll take your word for it. For now though, you're supposed to rest. Boss and Lulu do want to see for a few minutes first, okay?"
"Alright." She gave him a hug again. "You get some rest, ya hear?"
"Good. I'll see you soon."
Sam nodded and watched her as she walked to the door. She stopped before stepping out and looked back at Sam. She smiled and waved and Sam waved to her.
After the door closed, Sam paused. He then got up from the bed and stepped over to the bathroom. He hit the switch for the light and then looked in the mirror. Rosco was clean shaven once again, except for his sideburns. His blue eyes were tired, but not haunted like Sam had seen before. As Sam looked at the Sheriff, he received a faint impulse from Rosco.
Sam smiled. "You're welcome, Rosco," he whispered. Sam then closed his eyes as the blue light and tingling sensation wrapped themselves around him and he finally leaped on, hoping that maybe, just maybe, this would finally be the leap home.