Summary: This is a WHN for Day of the Dragon.
It’s my entry for the March Chaps and Spurs challenge along with the Pinecone Trifecta.
Word Count: 1,063 Rated: K
After the Dragon
This month’s words are:
After The Dragon
As Dr Kam Lee press the cloth against the young man’s shoulder trying to stem the flow of blood, Joe felt a prickle of pain flow down his arm. Each wave that followed grew more intense as the adrenaline left Joe’s system. Suddenly, he staggered and would have fallen if it weren’t for the quick reflexes of his father and Dr Lee.
“Mr Cartwright, the bullet is still in his shoulder and needs to come out as soon as possible,” the doctor explained in his soft, unassuming voice. “If you wish, I’ll ride to town and get Dr Martin.”
“That won’t be necessary, Dr Lee, I have complete confidence in you,” reassured Ben. He turned to his two oldest sons. “Hoss, help me get Joe into the buckboard.”
“Pa, I’m fine. I don’t need any help,” protested Joe.
Ben ignored his son’s protests, and with Hoss’ help was able to get Joe into the back of the dray. Once Kam Lee was settled next to Joe, Adam tied his father and the doctor’s horses to the back of the wagon.Ben assisted Su Ling up onto the seat before climbing on himself. He picked up the reins and with a light smack to the horses backs, turned around and headed for the house.
Hop Sing heard the buckboard enter the yard and knew it didn’t bode well. Shortly after the oldest Cartwrights left, a crow landed on the kitchen window sill. He hurried and shooed it away. The oriental man knew the omen the bird brought with him, one crow for sorrow, and felt a chill run down his spine.
“No, family be okay. Nothing happen to them.” He tried to reassure himself, but he couldn’t help remembering the threats General Tsung make, especially to Little Joe, or as the General called him, ‘the toothless puppy’.
Before he headed out the door he looked at the stove to make sure the large pot of water he put there, just in case, was boiling. When he saw Little Joe and the doctor in the back of the conveyance, he tore into a tirade of Chinese that was so loud it would have even scattered a flamboyance of flamingos.
“What happened?” he demanded.
Joe tried smiling at the family cook and caretaker, but it wasn’t even a forth of the normally dazzling smile that usually graced his lips. “I’m fine, Hop Sing. The General and I, uh, well, we had a little conversation.”
The youngest Cartwright would have been more convincing if his face wasn’t set in a grimace of pain and looking like he was ready to pass out at any second.
“Humpf,” responded Hop Sing.
Before anything more could be said, Ben and Hoss were at the back of the buckboard, and as gently as they could, helped the young man out and into the house. Ben had to let go of his son when they reached the staircase. Hoss wrapped his arm tightly around his brother’s waist and supported the boy up the stairs and to his room.
Before following, Kam Lee stopped and turned to Hop Sing, “I’m going to need hot water, towels and bandages.”
“Hot water ready. I have up in a minute.” The family cook turned and hurried into the kitchen to collect the requested items.
Su Ling entered the house with Adam and Hoss, and the trio made their way to Joe’s room.
Dr Lee was examining Joe’s wound when he heard Hop Sing enter and place the requested items on the dresser. “Thank you, Hop Sing. If you would be kind enough to take Mr Cartwright and his sons downstairs for something to eat and drink, I would appreciate it.”
“I’m not leaving Joseph,” Ben stated.
Kam Lee smiled, he had heard from Paul Martin how this family, especially the father, was protective of each other. “Please, Mr Cartwright, I need room to work and you need to rest while you can. I’m sure Joseph will keep you running around in the next few weeks.” The doctor smiled gently at the older man. “Your son will be fine. I just need to remove the bullet.”
“Pa, go on. I’m in good hands,” assured Joe.
Ben looked at his son and couldn’t help but to feel extreme pride. His chest bloated with it and the emotion shone in his eyes. “Alright, Joe, I’ll be downstairs.”
Once the Cartwrights were out of the room, Kam Lee and Su Ling went to work removing the bullet and mending the youngest Cartwright.
A soft moan escaped Joe’s lips as consciousness returned. His eyes fluttered a few times before opening completely. He saw his father leaning over him and as he looked around he could see not only the rest of his family, but Kam Lee and Su Ling also.
“Hi, Pa,” he whispered.
“Hi yourself. How do you feel?” Ben asked.
Joe closed his eyes briefly and tried to swallow. His throat felt like he had been eating sand for days. “Thirsty.”
Su Ling brought a glass of water over to him, and while Ben supported his head, she helped her friend to drink. Once Joe had his fill, his father gently lowered his head back to the pillow.
“Better. Thank you.”
Su Ling stepped back to allow the doctor room in order to examine his patient.
“Well, Doc, what do you think? Am I going to live?” chuckled Joe.
“I know he’s goin’ be fine now, if he’s makin’ them awful jokes.” Hoss shook his head in mock annoyance.
“He is going to be fine, Mr Cartwright. I will let Dr Martin know what happened when I get back to town and I’m sure he’ll be out tomorrow.”
“And I will stay and help Joe,” Su Ling said, reaffirming her statement from earlier in the day.”
“You little weasel! Leave it to you to get hurt right before we’re supposed to start haying,” complained Hoss.
The only response Joe had was a huge grin on his face.
“Seriously, Joe, do you need anything?” Adam asked.
“Yeah, could you get a new sleuth novel?” Joe asked with a smirk on his face, for he knew how much his oldest brother hated the books that he enjoyed so much.
“I should have known better than to ask,” moaned Adam.
Smiling, Joe closed his eyes and drifted off to sleep.
Other Stories by this Author
- Piney Woods (by frasrgrl)
- The Barn Dance (by frasrgrl)
- The Bond (by frasrgrl)
- Joe’s Journal (by frasrgrl)
- Under the Influence (by frasrgrl)