"If you live to be a hundred, I want to live to be a hundred minus one day so I never have to live without you.” – A. A. Milne
In all her 32 years on this earth, Maya had experienced it all. Pain, success, loss, failure, joy, but the one thing she had not yet to experience was love. A true undying, forever type of love. For the majority of her life, the thought of sharing her life with something felt like nothing more than an inconvenience, a setback, a hindrance that would only stop her from achieving greatness. This was all until she met Carina. The OB came in to her life when she was least expecting it, least wanted it. Thankfully, her opinion on love changed then moment she began to fall in love with the brunette. In all her success, her gold medal, becoming the first female captain of 19, Carina was her greatest triumph, her greatest achievement. The love she felt for her wife was unmatched and unending.
She was the happiest she had ever been. Until the night everything changed. Until she got the call. That call.
"You should go get some rest." A voice spoke from the doorway, disturbing the silence that had been present for the last hour or so.
"I don't want to leave in case..." Maya's voice broke, "I don't want her to be alone.
"I'll stay with her." She felt a hand gently grip her shoulder. "I'll be here the whole time."
"You promise?" Maya sounded weak and broken.
"I promise." Amelia Shepherd pulled up a chair next to the hospital bed. "I've got her."
FOUR DAYS EARLIER.
"Chief, where do you need us?" Maya walked towards the Battalion Chief who was in the middle of briefing station 23.
"Captain Bishop, excellent responce time." He said in the way of a greeting. "I need your team on damage control. Begin stabilising the building and then help with any casualties."
"You heard the man," Maya turned around to face her team, "Stabilise the main frame and then report back to me." The Captain instructed her team, "And remember, stay safe out there."
A chorus of 'Yes, Captain' sounded around her. They were the last station to be called to the scene so most of the fire had already been put out, it was now a clear up mission. Maya began to help with triage when she felt her phone vibrate in the pocket of her turnout gear. She answered the phone immediately when she saw the name 'Teddy Altman' flashing on her screen. The two wasn't exactly friends so she was confused why the heart surgeon would be calling her.
"Altman?" She held the phone tightly to her ear.
The chaos around her made it impossible to hear what was being said on the other end of the line.
"I can't hear you, hold on a second." Maya moved a short distance away from the scene, hoping to hear better.
"Maya, it's Carina. There's been an accident." The voice sounded distressed.
"What?" Maya's heart began to pound in her chest. "Is she okay?"
"You need to get here."
"I... I can't," Maya stuttered, unable to think clearly.
"Bishop, is everything okay?" Chief Gregory walked over to the blonde, his face clearly disapproving.
"My wife, there's been an accident." Maya was numb.
"Go. Aid Car 23 is headed to Grey Sloan, go with them." He instructed, his face softening as he did so. "I'll let lieutenant Herrera know."
"Thank you, sir." Maya ran in the direction of the aid car that was preparing to leave the scene.
They arrived at the hospital a few minutes after leaving the scene. She had messaged Altman to let her know that she was on her way, and the heart surgeon promised to meet her in the ambulance bay.
"What happened?" Maya asked as soon as the doors to the rig opened. "She was on her way home when I spoke to her."
"A drunk driver." Altman looked just as scared as Maya felt. "The drivers side was t-boned."
"Where is she?" The blonde was on the verge of a panic attack.
"The ER. They are working on her as we speak." Maya had heard all she needed to hear, she began to run towards the ER but was pulled back by the surgeon. "Maya, wait. You need to prepare yourself."
"Take me to her." The blonde tried to demand, but it came out more like a beg.
The surgeon led the blonde to the room when Carina was being worked on. The door was shut but Maya could see through the window, she faltered as Teddy opened the door. Inside the room was Shepard and Bailey accompanied by a few interns that she had never seen before. The energy in the room was chaotic. "You ready?" Maya barely registered that she was being spoken to. When they entered the room, the seriousness of the situation hit Maya like a ton of bricks, Carina was laying lifeless on the gurney while the doctors worked rhythmically around her.
"Dr. Altman. Please escort Captain Bishop to the waiting room." Bailey spoke sternly, refusing to look away from her patient. Maya could only focus on her wife, there was multiple tubes connected to her body and her neck was being supported by a brace. Bloody tissues had began to pile up on the floor around the gurney and an Intern was in the middle of intubating her wife.
"Chief," Ameila pulled the shorter women to the side of the room, "This could be the last time she gets to see her wife alive, we can spare her a minute." The neuro surgeon whispered to her boss. The chief's shoulders slumped in acceptance.
All three surgeons stepped to the far side of the room, giving the blonde as much privacy as they could without risking the life of their patient. Maya stepped up to the gurney, her chest feeling tighter with every step. She grabbed to hand of her lover and bent down so her forehead was resting gently on top of the unconscious woman's forehead. She placed a kiss on the exposed skin of her cheek and then pulled away.
"Hey, baby," She whispered, a tear falling down her cheek. "You don't get to die on me, you hear." Her throat felt tight and words were beginning to fail her. "This is not how we end." The sudden, aggressive beeping from a machine behind her caused her to stand up straight, she knew what the sound meant.
"We need to go, now!" Bailey shouted, causing chaos to erupt around her.
Her throat began to tighten and the room began to spin. "I've got you." She heard from somewhere in the room, and then she felt a pair of arms wrap around her waist. "Sit down." She felt her legs give way from under her.
Her world began to crumble around her.
The heart surgeon led the blonde to a nearby gurney. She placed the blonde on the bed and handed her the oxygen mask that was hanging on a hook on the wall behind her. "Breathe. In and out." The surgeon instructed.
Her breathing began to settle but she couldn't shake to overwhelming anxiety that had taken over her body.
"I need to call her father." Maya whispered.
"It has been handled, you don't need to worry about that." The surgeon placed a blood pressure band around the blonde's arm.
Maya nodded, a tear falling at the movement.
"I know it won't make you feel any better. But she has the best team with her right now."
Maya was laying in the hospital bed holding her phone tightly between her hands, Teddy had been paged away on a consult and had assured her she would be back as soon a possible. She stared at the screensaver on her phone, the photo was taken the day of their wedding, and stroked the smiling image of her wife.
"Hey," Maya looked up from her phone. Her bestfriend was standing at the end of the bed look shyly at the blonde."
"We heard what happened. We came as soon as we could."
"We?" Mayas throat was sore from crying.
Andy turned her head in the direction on the ambulance bay. The aid car was parked next to the door and the whole team was standing by the nurses station.
"We know you're probably not up for visitors right now, but we wanted to be here for you."
"Thank you." She smiled sadly at her friend.
"Is there any news?" Andy walked around the bed and sat on the edge of the bed. She wanted to comfort the blonde but unsure how.
"Not yet." Maya gulped, hoping to stop the impending tears. "It's pretty bad."
"Maya," Andy reached out to grab her hand but Maya pulled it away.
"It's fine." The blonde already knew what she was going to say.
"Bishop?" They both turned in the direction of the voice. A young intern was standing in the middle of the ER in a surgical gown. She walked over to the pair and closed the curtain around the bed.
"I'll be over there if you need me." Andy stood up to give her captain some privacy but Maya reached over to keep her from leaving.
Instead of answering, Andy sat back down and grabbed the reached out hand.
"Dr. Shepard is just finishing up. The surgery went well and they are now moving her to the ICU. I can take you to her whenever you are ready." The Intern spoke matter of fact.
"Please." The firefighter stood up and began to follow the intern to the ICU.
"We will be here if you need us." Andy assured the blonde before walking towards the rest of the crew.
Maya stood in the doorway of Carina's room unable to bring herself to walk in, there was tubes every where and the majority of Carina body was covered in bandages. "She had a pretty extensive brain bleed..." she noticed the neuro surgeon wast talking to her but she could only focus on her wife. She wanted to touch her so badly but she was worried she would break. "We won't know more until she wakes up."
"Is it okay if I stay with her?"
"Of course take all the time you need." Amelia patted her on the shoulder.
"Thank you." Maya said from the doorway.
Amelia turned from her spot on the chair in confusion. "I thought I told you to rest."
"I couldn't sleep." Maya walked into the room and stood next to Carina's head. "Everytime I close my eyes I see..." Maya shook off the thought. "It's been four days, Amelia. Why hasn't she woken up yet."
"She suffered a pretty extensive head injury, these things take time. If she still hasn't woken up in a few days, then you can be worried." Ameila wouldn't tell the blonde this, but she was worried about her friend. The longer she stayed in a coma, the less chance she has of waking up at all. "Is there someone I can call, Maya? You shouldn't have to be here alone."
"There's no one." Maya knew that Vic or Andy would be here in the blink of an eye but it was late and she didn't want to bother them.
"Okay," She could tell that Amelia didn't believe her. "I'm needed on rounds, but i'll be back to check on her later, get a nurse to page me if you need anything. Anything at all."
4 DAYS EARLIER
Maya had been sitting by the brunette's side for the last 3 hours, just watching the rise and fall of her wife's chest. Nurses have been in and our routinely, but no words were spoken. There was another check due any minute now.
If on queue, a young latina intern walked through the door holding a small bowl and a sterile sponge. "I just need to clean her up."
"I'll do it." Maya held out her hand to take the bowl, the intern was clearly confused.
"Erm, I don't think-"
"It's okay, Dr Lance." Miranda Bailey spoke with authority. The intern handed over the bowl to the blonde and walked out the room with her head down.
The blonde sat on the edge of the bed, as close to the brunette's head as she could get. She dipped the soft sponge into the water and began to clean off the dried blood that was covering the majority of the left side of her face. "I'm so sorry this happened to you." She whispered. She had been handed Carina's wedding ring when she arrived at the hospital and she was wearing it above her own. "You can't leave me, Carina." A tear welled up in her eyes. If she could trade places with her wife then she would. "You don't get to promise me forever, and then just abandon me." Her face was now clean, so she placed the bowl on the small table next to the bed but she stayed seated on the bed.
Ameila Shepard and Miranda Bailey was watching the exchange from outside the window. Miranda knew both women quite well, she had attended their wedding only a month prior. "I thought you were supposed to finish an hour ago." Amelia broke the silence.
"I wanted to be here in case anything changed."
"Go home, Bailey. Go be with your husband." Shepard insisted. "I'll call you when we have news."
"You better. I can't have another one of my doctors die on me."
Miranda Bailey was sitting in her office when she got the paged by the neuro surgeon, she ran from her office to the ICU until she was outside room '305'.
"You paged?" She asked when she saw Amelia Shepherd standing the middle of the room.
"She's beginning to breathe over the tube," Amelia was in the middle of putting on a pair of navy blue gloves. "I thought you would want to be here." She looked down at the bed, Carina was fighting the tube but was still unconscious.
"Where's Bishop?" It was an unusual sight to see the blonde absent from the room.
"Andy came by earlier and took her down to the canteen." Miranda was relived that the blonde was eating but she didn't want to face her wrath if she finds out Carina was waking up with out her here.
"Dr Lance, go and get Maya Bishop from the canteen." The Intern stopped what she was doing, but made no effort to move. "Now!"
Miranda walked around the opposite side of the bed and grabbed one of Carina's limp hands. "Carina, its Miranda Bailey." She was unsure if the brunette could hear her. "I need you to stay calm and try to breath for me." The brunette calmed slightly in her movement. "Shepard is going to remove the tube."
"What happened?" Maya came skidding to a halt inside the room. She was breathing fast and was looking paler than usual.
"She's breathing on her own. Dr. Shepard is about to remove the tube."
"She's waking up?" Maya rushed towards her wife, replacing Bailey at her bedside.
"It looks that way." Miranda smiled for the first time since the accident. "Talk to her, she's going to be scared and confused. It will be good for her to hear your voice."
Amelia began to work around her, the tube was removed successfully but she still needed to do some checks.
"Carina, baby, its time to wake up now." The blonde spoke softly into her wife's ear. "I'm here,"
Carina's eyelids flicked. They were not fully open but at least it was something.
"Carina, can you hear me." Shepard pull her pocket light from her pocket and shined it in her patient's eyes.
"What happened?" Carina croaked out. Her eyes opening slightly. She looked around the room confused and disorientated. "Where am I?"
"You've been in an accident." Miranda stepped forward so she was in the brunette's line of sight. Carina began to panic, her eyes darting furiously around the room. Her eyes landed on Maya which subconsciously calmed her down some. "You're at Grey Sloan Memorial."
Maya grabbed one of her hands and pulled to towards her chest, holding them close to her. "Carina, it's okay. You're okay."
"Who are you?" Carina spoke, her confusion turning to fear. She pulled her arm away from the embrace and Maya's heart dropped into her stomach.
"It's me, it's Maya." The blonde stepped back like she had been punched.
"I dont... I don't know..."
Miranda walked up to the blonde and pulled her away from the bed. Ameila jumped into action and began performing some basic tests on the brunette.