Microsoft word - where the heart is.doc
Spoilers: Dead Irish Writers
“I don’t know why you won’t listen to me?”
“Why I won’t listen to you?!” Josh shouted as they left the restaurant.
“Amy, you’ve been harping on this for three days. Can’t we just have a nice
dinner and not talk about political agendas?”
“Harping! I’m not harping. I’m expressing the views….” Josh cut her off by
walking to the parking lot and leaving her standing on the sidewalk.
“I’m done with this argument. You coming or not?” Josh motioned toward the
car. His head was pounding and he suddenly felt nauseous. He just wanted to
go home and go to bed. Amy quickly caught up with him and soon they were on
their way back to her apartment. Josh swallowed hard and tried to concentrate
on the road in front of him. They were only a few blocks from her apartment.
Why did he have to agree to Italian food? His dinner felt like it was sitting on his
“Huh? Yeah. I’m just ready to go home.” Amy sighed and looked annoyed as she
stared out the window. Josh felt a wave of relief as he pulled into a parking
space in front of Amy’s apartment. He climbed out of the car and rushed around
to open Amy’s door. She looped her arm in his as they ascended the stairs to her
building. Josh coughed and rested his hand on his chest.
“J?” His head was killing him. When he wiped his hand across his forehead he
“Josh? What’s wrong? Are you okay?” Josh tried to take a deep breath but the
pain in his chest seemed to block his air. He leaned against the rail of the steps
“I need you to….” Amy grabbed his shoulders and tried to steady him.
“Call her first. Then call an ambulance.”
Amy stood in front of the glass doors of the exam room while the doctors took
Josh’s vitals and started to run some tests. She could still hear what they were
saying as they opened the front of his shirt and started to apply the electrodes
for the EKG. She looked on in concern as they mentioned his previous medical
history and the shooting. She had done as Josh had asked and called CJ and
then the ambulance. Josh always joked about CJ being his first call; at least she
thought he had been joking. She barely got the number dialed before Josh took
the phone from her. With a few short words, Josh told CJ he was going to the
hospital. Amy wanted to ask him what CJ would do, but Josh thrust the phone at
her and then clutched his chest. Amidst all the general noise and chaos of the
emergency room a voice caught Amy’s attention. She turned to see Donna
leaning up against the counter of the information desk.
“I’m Donna Moss. I’m here for Josh Lyman. It should be noted on his file.” Amy
was struck by the utter panic on the young woman’s face. She stepped back
away from the door to get a better look. Donna was wearing what looked like
pajama pants and a sweatshirt jacket over a large t-shirt. Her hair was damp and
it was obvious she had left the house in a hurry. Amy watched as the nurse
flipped through a stack of folders and then pointed in the direction of the exam
room. Amy thought Donna saw her, but when Donna ran past her and into the
room, she knew there was only one thing in Donna’s field of vision. The doctor
had stepped away from Josh and was making a notation in his chart when
For the briefest of moments, Amy thought about fol owing Donna into the room.
However, the look on Josh’s face when he looked up and saw Donna made her
think better of it. In that split second of recognition, the fear on Josh’s face
eased. Relief seemed to wash over him as he reached out his hand for her.
“Josh, I’m here! I’m right here. What happened?”
“I’m okay. I’m sure it’s nothing.” Josh was doing his best to cover up his own
concern for Donna’s sake. He didn’t know why. She could see right through his
Amy could see the tears fall down her cheeks as she clung to his hand. Josh
absently stroked the back of her hand with his thumb as she reached up and
pushed the hair away from his face. Josh’s expression was relaxed now. His
color was even returning. It amazed her at the effect Donna had over him. The
doctor and the nurses still moved about checking monitors and inserting an IV
while Donna gently calmed his worried face. Amy couldn’t help but watch as the
doctor motioned for Donna to move. Josh held on to her hand until the last
possible second before she stepped off to the side of the room. As soon as he
had finished his task, Donna returned to his side, clinging tightly to his hand.
CJ and Toby rushed through the hospital entrance and saw Amy standing outside
“What happened? Is he alright? Is it his heart?” CJ was barely controlled panic.
Toby took hold of her elbow and willed her to calm down.
“I’m not sure. He’s stil in with the doctor.”
“Were you two at dinner?” Toby asked trying to piece together the events that
led up to Josh being taken to the hospital.
“We were on the way back to my place. He had pulled up to my apartment and
was walking me inside. The next thing I knew he told me to call you and then an
ambulance.” CJ reached up and fingered her necklace while she looked past
“When did Donna get here?” Toby asked. “How did she beat us here?”
“She just got here.” Amy noticed the gentle look he gave Donna as the three of
“This is going to be hard for her.” Toby said to no one in particular. Amy looked
“I pray he’s okay. I don’t know if she can handle this again.” CJ offered as they
all stared through the glass doors. Amy realized that they were talking about the
shooting. She turned to look at Josh again.
“We’re going to wait on your labs to come back and we’ll see what’s going on.
Your heartbeat is strong and regular but I’d like to see what comes back to make
sure everything is doing what it’s supposed to.” The doctor smiled and tried to
keep his mood light. Donna could only nod as he walked out of the room. She
tightened her grip on Josh’s hand. Neither Josh nor Donna seemed to notice the
nurse moving about and checking his IV. Donna could only sit on the edge of the
small gurney and rub her hand over his hair. Josh leaned his head back on the
pillow and closed his eyes trying to take reassurance from her touch.
“How is he?!” Sam rushed toward Toby slightly out of breath.
“We don’t know. They’re running tests. Amy said he was having chest pains.”
“Heart attack?” Sam’s face grew dark as he took a step past Toby so he could
“We don’t know. Have you talked to Leo?”
“I just hung up. He wants updates every ten minutes.”
“’kay.” Sam reached out and put his arm around CJ. Amy watched as the two
friends stood vigil for one of their own.
“He looks pale.” CJ rested her head on Sam’s.
“Yeah, but Donna’s here.” Amy saw the embarrassment flash over Sam’s face
when he realized she was standing there. “I mean….I’m….”
Amy turned her head and looked back into the exam room. Before Sam could
finish his apology, the doctor walked through the doors.
“He’s a little uncomfortable, but I don’t think it’s too serious. We’re waiting on
“Sure.” The three of them pushed through the doors and gathered around Josh’s
CJ was the first to reach him and take his free hand.
“A little better.” Amy stood at the foot of the bed and watched as they all talked
softly to each other. Donna didn’t seem to take part in the conversations. She
kept her gaze on Josh’s face. He never released her hand.
The doctor returned with Josh’s results and asked everyone to leave the room.
Donna refused. As CJ, Sam and Toby stood just outside the glass doors, Amy
stood off to the side but was still able to see the scene in front of her.
“Well Mr. Lyman. Your tests all came back negative. It looks like you have a
“Indigestion?!” Josh’s indignation was soon forgotten when he felt Donna’s head
fall to his shoulder. Her whole body shook as she cried. The doctor smiled at
“With your eating habits, work schedule and whatever stress you’ve been under
over the last few days, you’ve wound yourself up pretty tight. I’ll write you a
script for Zantac. Lay off the spicy foods and try to relax.” Josh nodded even
though he was barely paying attention. All his focus was on the blonde head
“I was so scared. CJ called. All I could think about was last time. I don’t even
remember how I got here.” Josh rested his forehead on hers while he stroked
Toby watched as Amy took in the scene going on in the exam room. He cleared
his throat and stepped back through the doors. Donna smiled a warm smile of
“We heard. I’m glad you’re okay, Josh.”
“Donna, wil you go get a cup of coffee with me?” Donna looked at Toby as if he
had sprouted another head. Toby looked at Josh and then out the doors at Amy.
“It’s okay Donna. I’m not going anywhere.”
“Donna.” Toby urged. Donna turned to face him and for the first time saw Amy.
Amy stepped through the doors and stood silently at the end of the bed. Josh
held her gaze for a moment before finally breaking the silence.
The awkward silence was suffocating. Josh swiped his hand through his hair and
“I’m gonna go.” Josh looked up at her with shock and hurt in his eyes.
“What? You’re leaving? It wasn’t my heart. It was….”
“I’m leaving because of your heart Josh.” It took him a moment to recover from
“What? You’re leaving me because of my heart?! But I just told you it was just
“It’s not going to work Josh. I think you know that.”
“So you’re breaking up with me?! You’re breaking up with me while I’m lying in
the hospital?! Are you afraid I just might have a heart attack some day? Is that
Josh was a little surprised at how calm Amy was. She seemed sad and regretful.
“That’s not what I meant. Your heart is the problem. But not the way you think.”
“You’re not making any sense. What are you talking about? Why is my heart the
“Because I’ll never have a place in it. I’m not where your heart is.” Her words
hung in the air. Josh took a deep breath and tried to understand what she was
“I don’t know what you mean. Why would you say that?” Amy took a step
forward and placed her hand on his arm. With a crooked smile she shook her
“You know the problem with guys like you?” Josh exhaled loudly and looked up
“What’s the problem with guys like me?”
“Even when they get hit over the head, they can’t lie to their heart.” Amy leaned
“Tell Donna to take good care of you.”
“Let your heart tell you what to do Josh. Everyone else can see what it wants.”
Josh watched as the glass doors swung shut. It was barely a minute before
Donna returned with a worried look on her face.
“Josh? Why did Amy leave? Are you okay?” Josh reached for her hand and held it
“She couldn’t stay with me because of my heart.” Josh saw Donna’s face turn to
“She said my heart isn’t with her.”
“You will.” Josh pulled her hand to his lips and placed a soft kiss on the tip of her
fingers. “Come on. I want to go home.”
“Josh?” Donna cocked her head to the side and questioned his light mood.
“Take me home Donnatella.” Donna helped him stand and was pleased to feel
his hand slip around hers as they walked out the glass doors.
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