I hope there's enough humor in this story to at least make people chuckle. I'm trying to make it light-hearted in some parts just to not make the story as depressing.
A quiet cough brought the three Turks out of their daze. Seeing the doctor in the doorway, Reno jumped out of his seat, anxious to hear the news he was about to give them.
'Well? How is he?' Reno questioned. 'He's not dead, is he?'
The doctor briefly paused for a moment, before beginning to answer the red-head's question. Reno took the silence as bad news and lashed out at the older man.
'He's dead isn't he!? You let him die? We knew it wasn't a good idea to slice him open right now but noooo...you were the doctor. You knew better then us.'
'But he's...' The doctor began, but Reno cut him off.
'What? He's not suffering anymore? Yeah, thanks for having a heart there doc. Now there's a funeral to plan. I hope you're happy.'
The doctor stared in shock at Reno, wondering where he got the idea that the President was dead. Shaking his head, he asked the red-head if he could speak.
'Yeah sure, whatever. Go ahead and tell us how hard you fought to save his life and all that heroic stuff.'
'Reno, shut up and let the man speak.' Tseng snapped. He wanted to hear how the surgery went; something that the red-head was keeping him from finding out. 'Cut him off again and he'll have to operate on you. Understood?'
With a mumbled ‘yeah, yeah, whatever’, Reno sat back in his chair, glared at the back of Tseng's head, then motioned for the doctor to start talking.
'He's not dead, sir. He's in a recovery room'
'Why didn't you say that in the first place!?' Reno retorted.
'Reno, shut up!' Tseng admonished. 'How badly was he injured? Did you manage to repair all the damage?'
Knowing Tseng for as long as he had, Reno knew the limit of Tseng's patience and knew that Tseng had reached that limit about 10 minutes ago. Knowing that the next thing he would say might result in a bullet wound, Reno did as he was ordered and kept quiet.
'Despite the materia treatment and the potions administered when he arrived, there was still a lot of internal bleeding.' The doctor began. 'We managed to stop the bleeding and patch him up. The blood that the young lady gave us,' he said while nodding in Elena's direction, 'definitely assisted us in keeping him alive through the procedure. The injuries should be fully healed within the next couple of weeks.'
Tseng nodded, thankful that Rufus was not only still alive, but that he was strong enough to pull through such a delicate surgery.
'What about what you wanted to do with his back?' Elena asked. 'Were you able to have a look at it?'
'Yes, we were able to have a look at it and there was more damage done then what we originally thought.' He sighed. 'We were able to put the pins and plate in place in his lower back, which will help his back be able to carry his weight, but we can't guarantee for certain if or when he'll be able to walk again.'
Reno shook his head. 'So you mean to say you did all that for nothing?'
'No, that's not what I'm saying.' The doctor defended. 'We couldn't see everything on the x-rays. If we wouldn't have gone through with the surgery, we wouldn't have known about the swelling and the pressure that was on his spine. Going in let us see it and alleviate the pressure, which means that he now has a better chance of survival and recovery. As long as he doesn't get an infection, he should be fine.'
'So, will he wake up soon?' Elena asked, hopeful.
'He's still in a coma.' The doctor informed them. 'At this point, it's still hard to say if he'll wake up anytime soon, or at all. I'm sorry. I wish I had better news then this to give all of you.'
'That's fine, doctor.' Tseng informed him. 'You told us he survived the surgery. That in itself is very good news.'
‘Is Rude still with him now?’ Reno questioned.
‘Yes, the other Turk is in standing guard outside of the recovery room right now. He remained out of our way during the entire procedure and did not interfere with our work.’ He added while looking directly at Tseng. ‘It’s something that we must say we greatly appreciated.’
Tseng bit his tongue. He knew that the doctor was referring to him and his interference in the emergency room when Rufus first arrived. Taking a few breaths to calm his nerves, he forced a smile.
‘Rude is very good at performing his duties without getting in anyone’s way. I am happy to see that his adherence to duty remained intact during this procedure. I’ll be sure to pass on your compliment to him.’
Sensing the tension, the doctor simply nodded. ‘Thank you. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I must go and check the President’s condition as well as tend to other patients. Are there any other questions before I go?’
‘Yeah, just one.’ Reno started. ‘Can we go see him now?’
'He'll be out of recovery in about an hour. I'll come back then and bring you to his room.'
The Turks nodded and watched the doctor leave the waiting room, leaving them alone again.