Worth Living For

written by: Alphie  (sevendayjesus247@hotmail.com)

 

 

 

 

            Laughter filled the small room as the woman gathered about to share and talk about Alex’s coming baby.  Many of them didn’t know what to get her for her baby shower since she refuses to know the sex of the baby so many of them gave her gift certificates or items that will be of most use.  Walker sat there trying not to laugh when he was showed the small diapers and toys.

  He still couldn’t believe that this was happening.  In two more months he was going to be a father.

            “Walker, look at this!”  Alex squealed as she held up a set of bathing toys.

 

            “Cute.”  Walker lifted up a set of blankets.  “Good thing this is reversible.”  he smiled.  “Personally if we had a son I don’t think he wanted to look at these disgusting bunnies and flowers.”

            Alex huffed.  “It’s not disgusting,”  she looked hurt.  “It’s really cute.”

            Walker just shrugged.  “Whatever you say.”

            She hit him playfully on the shoulder.  “Well, just watch it sooner or later you too will be caught up in the baby bug.”

            “I doubt it.”  he rubbed her stomach.  “Remember I’m not the one that is pregnant.”

            Trivette burst out in laughter.  “Good thing to or we will have to call Guinness.”

            Taking the blanket set Walker chucked it at Trivette.  “Very funny.”

            His friend just shrugged.  “I’m telling the truth.”  he handed Alex a bag. 

“Here you are.  Hope you enjoy this.”

            Opening the bag Alex took out a baby monitor system.  “This is wonderful, Jimmy.  This will definitely come in handy.”

            “Welcome.”  he quickly jumped up when his pager vibrated.  “Excuse me.”

            Alex quickly turned at Walker.  “Your guys are on call?”

            Walker stood up.  “Sorry Alex we weren’t expecting a call.  But we had to wear the pagers just in case somebody found Lee Patterson.”

            Lee Patterson was a man that had a warrant out for his arrest.  He had killed six woman in cold blood then raped them.  He was a very sick man and the Rangers have been after him for the last six months.  And now it was Trivette’s turn to wear the pager just in case something broke in the case.

            Trivette came back into the living room and motioned for Walker to come into the kitchen.  When Walker came in Trivette smiled.

            “They have Patterson.”  Trivette said with glee.

            “Who does?”

            “The Los Angeles Police.”  Trivette smiled.  “They want us personally to escort him back to Dallas.”

            Walker patted Trivette’s shoulder.  “That’s great.”  he looked back to Alex.  “Oh, wait I can’t.  Alex is expecting any time soon.”

            “Walker, this is a two day deal.”  Trivette patted Walker’s shoulder. 

“Alex, isn’t expected till another two months.”

            “Alright, I’ll do it, but if Alex gives birth you will be sorry.”  Walker came back to the room where Alex was talking to Syd.

            She turned to her husband.  “What’s wrong Walker?”

            He sat down beside her.  “They found Patterson.”  he gave her a hug.  “I’m going to California tomorrow but will be back the same night.”

            She sighed.  “I understand.”  she gave him a big hug.  “You be careful and make sure you come home unhurt.”

            He kissed her on the lips.  “I will I promise.”

            Early the next day Walker and Trivette sat in the airplane both of them being silent.  Walker mainly looked out the window and read a book.  And Trivette played some games on his cell phone.  Looking up from his magazine Walker saw a young kid looking at him.

            Smiling he leaned towards the kid.  “So, what is your name son?”

            The kid smiled.  “Name is Terry Palileo.”  he nudged his friend sitting beside him.  “This is my friend Maria Williams.”

            Maria turned around.  “Hello.”  she then nudged an older teen sitting beside her.  “This is Instructor Mr. James Morris.”

            “Instructor huh.”  Walker slowly stood up and went towards the instructor. 

“So, you all with a martial arts school?”

            James nodded.  “Yeah, we are.”  he pointed to three more kids.  “I have six more kids traveling with me.  They’re going to their very first tournament and Loretta and I are this is our first out-of-state tournament.”

            An older woman about late twenties waved at Walker.  “You look really familiar sir.  Have you taken martial arts before?”

            Walker nodded.  “Yeah, I have and I still do.”  he smiled.  “Use to do kickboxing in the earlier eighties but turned to law enforcement.”  looking at the team jackets he noticed that they did Olympic sparring.   “So, it’s Olympic sparring you do?”

            “Yeah, we do.  Right now James is training for the Olympics.”

            “Cool.”  Walker patted James shoulder.  “That’s a goal to have.”

            “Thank you sir.”  suddenly the plane lurched.  “That didn’t feel good.”

            Walker slowly stood up and as he did the plane lurched again this time seeming to drop altitude.  He quickly started to go to the pilots cabin and see what is up.

            “Attention passengers this is your captain speaking.”  the pilot said over the PA.  “We are experiencing some turbulence so please stay seated and remain seated till your buckle your seatbelt sign stops flashing.  Thank you.”

            “What’s up captain?”  Walker said as he stepped into the cabin.

            The captain turned around.  “We ran into a snow storm going into the Rocky Mountains.  So, please sir go back to your seat and stay seated.”

            Nodding Walker returned to his seat and sat down.  As he sat down the plane lurched again this time sending him flying into the seat in front of him. 

Shaking the shock out he leaned back and started to buckle himself in. 

Without warning the lights in the plane began to dim.

            “Something ain’t right Trivette.  I’m going to check things out.”

            Walker unbuckled himself and as he was about to stand up when an explosion rocked the plane.  Looking over to the right Walker could see flames streaming out of the engine.  Without warning the airplane banked right sending Walker crashing onto some passengers.  Pushing himself off he tried to make it to the seat and managed to grab hold of the armrest.

            “Walker, grab hold of my hand!”  Trivette said reaching out.

            Another explosion rocked the plane causing the whole plane to shudder.  The oxygen masks came out as alarms rang noisily.  On top of the alarms was a roaring sound that made everything go in slow motion.

            Closing his eyes Walker thought about Alex.  “I’m sorry Alex, forgive me.”  he said aloud.

            Trivette wanted to unbuckle to get to Walker but the force of the plane going kept him plastered to his seat.  Turning his head he saw Walker getting into his seat and just as he did debris flew down the aisle.  Walker sat in his seat then looked at Trivette.

            “Hey, buddy.  It was nice knowing you”  Walker said smiling.

            Trivette couldn’t believe what Walker said but it was true they are going to die.  He took hold of Walker’s hand then smiled.

            “Nice knowing you too.”  that was all Trivette said before a loud explosion.

            The ranch house creaked and groan with the wind as Alex prepared dinner.  Syd was right beside her pleading with her to sit down.  Finally after ten minutes Alex decided to sit down and watch the news.  Very slowly she made her way to the couch and turned on the news.  When she did she saw a terrible news report.

            A plane had crashed in the Rocky Mountains possibly by a terrible snow storm that suddenly hit the area.  The plane was totally demolished with only the tail end showing.  Problem is because of the weather no rescue crews or salvage crews are allowed in.  And if so it will take days by foot to reach the site.

            Listening more to the report Alex’s heart began to sink.  The plane was from Dallas to Los Angeles:  Was it Walker’s plane?

            Suddenly the phone rang causing her to jump.  Syd picked up the phone then went into the living room.

            “Alex, phone call.”

            Very shakily Alex got up and took the phone.  “Hello, this is Alex Cahill-Walker.”

            “Hello mam.”  a gentleman said.  “I’m from National Air.  I’m to call you to let you know that Mr. Cordell Walker was on a flight that crashed near Denver.  I’m sorry we’re expecting no survivors.”

            Alex dropped the phone and broke out in tears.  “Walker! Why!”

            Syd quickly ran up to her.  “Alex, what’s wrong?”  glancing at the television Syd’s question was answered.  “Oh my gosh.  That can’t be.”  she picked up the phone said good-bye to the gentleman then called Gage.

            “I know.  I saw it on the news.”  he sighed deeply.  “Watch Alex alright?”

            “Yeah, I will.”  Syd suddenly realized Alex was in pain.  “Uh, oh she’s in labor.”

            Gage gasped.  “Must be the shock.  Okay, get her to the hospital now.  I’ll be right there.”  with that he hung up.

            Alex grabbed her stomach.  “Syd, I need to go to the hospital my water just broke.”  slowly she wobbled to the door.  “Why does this have to happen?”

            As Trivette woke up all he could hear was creaks and groans.  Groaning himself he tried to move but found his body ached with pain.  Taking a deep breath he opened his eyes to see twisted metal and wires.

            “Oh, am I dead?”  he asked himself while slowly sitting up.

            “You wished you were.”  said a male voice from somewhere.

            Trivette gradually looked around.  “Where are you?”

            A small male walked in his way covered in dirt and blood.  When the male got closer he saw that it was James the instructor.  Trivette noticed that he was limping slightly and held his arm tightly.

            Slowly getting up Trivette went to the young man.  “How badly are you hurt?”

            James winced.  “I’m burned pretty bad.  Also I think I hurt my knee.”

            “All right.”  Trivette slowly stood up which made his head swim.  “Okay, help me find any survivors.”

            “Okay.”  James started to walk around but stopped.  “Sir, there is too many bodies strewn about here.”  he shook his head.  “I can’t check everyone of them.”

            Suddenly Trivette remembered Walker.  “Okay, check for your teammates and Walker, the Ranger you talked to earlier.”

            “Okay.”  James gently lifted a piece of metal and immediately dropped it. 

“Okay, that person is definitely dead.”

            Trivette went over picked the panel up then quickly dropped it.  A lady laid with her eyes wide open her throat slashed.  He will probably never get that image out of his mind.  Slowly walking around he spotted some movement over by a pile of seats.

            As quickly as he could he went over there and saw Terry trying to sit up.  The young kid had a deep gash across his cheek and a dark bruise on his temple.

            “What happened?”

            “Plane crashed.”  Trivette sighed.  “Right now we’re looking for any survivors.”

            Terry shivered.  “We need to make some shelter.”  he blew in his hands.  “I’m really getting cold.”

            Trivette sighed.  “Good idea.”  he winced as pain ran down from his shoulder.  “Why don’t you and I start looking for blankets and something to build shelter with.”  he turned to James.  “James you keep doing what your doing.”

            “All right.”  James started to holler.  “I found Walker!”

            Quickly Trivette ran over the debris to where James was standing at.  When he got there his heart sank.  Walker was covered with debris and seemed to be laying at an odd angle.  He slowly sat down by his friend’s side and noticed that Walker had a bad burn on his right side of his face.  He also noticed that he had a pretty bad gash over his left eye.  Checking Walker

over he noticed that he was also burned on the neck, shoulder, chest and right arm.

            “Walker, hey man if your with me wake up.”  Trivette tried to hide his fears.

            Walker slowly opened his eyes.  “Am I dead?”

            “No man your alive.”  Trivette looked up as a man came walking up to them. 

“What’s your name sir?”

            The man knelt down.  “Name is Bradley.”  he started to look Walker over. 

“Okay, this man needs medical attention really bad.”  he put a blanket on Walker.  “Sir, what hurts the most right now?”

            “My leg.”  Walker closed his eyes and fell asleep.

            Bradley checked Walker’s pulse then stood up.  “He’s alright for now but if we don’t get him to a hospital soon he will get infections cause of his burns.”

            James showed up with some blankets.  “Here some blankets.”

            Trivette nodded.  “Okay, cover Walker up and let’s make a shelter.”  he pounded on what was left of the plane.  “This will help some.”

 

Two Days Later

 

            In Dallas everybody was in shock they couldn’t believe that Walker and Trivette were involved in the crash.  Most of the Rangers held a vigil at the Company keeping track of what is going on with the crash.  Many people still held some hope that Trivette and Walker are alive.

            Meanwhile at the hospital Syd sat besides Alex as she laid in the bed ranting and raving.  The doctors were able to postpone the labor for now but Alex’s contractions were getting stronger and stronger.  She wished Walker was here right now and she knew that he was by spirit.

            “Alex, do you want me to get you something?”

            “No, I’m fine.” she started to breath hard. “Oh, Syd this baby wants to come out.”

            Syd nodded.  “Do you want me to get the doctor?”

            Alex started to push.  “Yes, get him now!”

            Quickly Syd rushed out of the room then found Alex’s doctor; Doctor Smiths.

  He quickly got a team together and went into Alex’s room.  Syd put on a gown and cap then also went into the room to go by Alex‘s bed.

            “Okay, remember the classes.”  Syd looked at the doctor.  “How’s she doing?”

            Doctor Smiths smiled.  “Doing really good.”  his smile grew bigger. “All right, one more push Alex’s I know you have it in you.”

            Gage stood outside the room with Josie hoping the labor was going okay.

Soon he heard a blood curdling yell and quickly turned his attention to the window.  He had to smile when Doctor Smiths held up a beautiful baby.

            “Okay, Alex it’s a beautiful baby boy.”  Doctor Smiths exclaimed as he quickly put the baby in an incubator.  “Unfortunately since he’s premature we will have to watch him for the next forty-eight hours.”

            Alex quickly sat up.  “Can I see him Doctor Smiths?”

            He went to hold Alex’s hand.  “It’s very critical right now that we watch him closely.”  he smiled.  “He looks healthy but there could be some underlining problems that we can’t see yet.”

            She nodded.  “Okay.”  she smiled wearily.  “And his name is Cordell James.”

            “Cordell James are you sure?”  Doctor Smith got his clipboard.  “Same as Walker’s first name and Trivette’s?”

            “Yes.”  she looked at Sydney.  “That way we can remember them.”

            “All right.”  Doctor Smiths grinned.  “We will keep really good watch on Cordell.”

            The wind howled as the survivors huddled together in there make shift shelter.  All together there were only five of them:  Bradley; a nurse, Terry, James, Trivette and Walker.  Most of them just had scrapes and minor burns but Trivette and James both had broken bones.  Walker was getting worse with each passing minute.  One time during the night he shivered so

bad Trivette thought he was having a seizure.

            Trivette blew into his hands wanting so badly to build a fire.  He knew though building a fire would blow them up or catch everything on fire.  Looking up at Bradley he could see the young man working on Walker.

            Terry appeared inside the shelter with his arms full of food and bottles. 

“Hey, you guys I found some food and water that isn’t contaminated.”

            James let out a holler.  “All right!”  he quickly tried to stand up but fell.  “Man, we haven’t eaten for two days now!”

            “Way to go Terry.”  Trivette gradually stood up and went to the kid.  “Let me see one of those bottles.”

            “Sure.”  Terry handed Trivette the fullest one.  “Make sure Walker gets it down.”

            Suddenly the blanket to their make shift shelter blew open sending snow flying in.  Trivette was about to close it when a young lady walked in.

            “It’s the stewardess.”  said James smiling.  “Do you know if anybody else is alive out there?”

            She shook her head.  “Not that I know of.”  she sat down wearily.  “I thought I was the only one.”

            Bradley stepped up to her.  “You got a pretty nasty cut let me look at that.”

            Trivette went over to Walker and opened the bottle.  He took a sip then held the bottle to his friends chapped lips.

            As the water ran into Walker’s mouth he slowly woke up.  After Walker took a few sips he had to smile wearily.

            “That’s the best....”  Walker started coughing.  “I can’t breath.”

            “Hang in there buddy.”  Trivette went to Bradley who quickly ran over.

            “Okay, we need to get him laying on his side.”  Bradley started to carefully roll Walker on his side when he did Walker let out a yell.  “His leg is pinned.”

            Trivette slumped down heavily on the frozen dirt.  “There is nothing you can do?”

            “Just watch him.”  Bradley went to Trivette.  “Let’s see if there are any more survivors out there.”

            After two hours of searching Bradley and Trivette did find three more survivors.  Maria was one of them, a business man who was burned nearly 60% of his body, and young teen who was from the martial arts school.

            Bradley helped lay the man down besides Walker.  “Alright, we have to watch these two real closely.”  he then helped Trivette to lay Maria down.  “She has a really bad head wound.”  he started to press on her stomach then shook his head.  “I’m amazed that she has made it this far.”

            The teen went to James and gave him a hug.  “I’m so glad your alive!”

            James smiled.  “I thought you were dead Burton.”

            Burton shook his head.  “I was staying at Loretta’s side.”  he started to cry.  “She died last night.”

            “It’s okay.  We’re going to make it.”  he turned to Maria.  “How is she Bradley?”

            Bradley shook his head.  “She passed on.”  he sat down.  “So, there are only seven of us out of hundred and thirty?”

            Trivette crawled over to Walker and held his friends hand.  “Walker, hang in there everything is going to be okay.”

            Walker slowly nodded.  “I’ll try.”  he winced.  “Oh, my leg.”

            “Bradley, is there anything we can do?”

            “We really haven’t been able to see his leg cause of all the debris on him.”  Bradley turned to Burton.  “You look like a strong kid you want to help me.”

            “Sure thing.”

            But after ten minutes both men were worn out and had to stop.  They only managed to reveal one of Walker’s legs which Bradley said the ankle was broken and could be the cause to Walker’s pain.

            “Okay, we got to set this.”  he looked around till he found a piece of wood.  He took a rag and wrapped it around it.  “Alright, put this in Walker’s mouth.”

            When Trivette did Walker looked at him strangely.  “This is for your own good buddy.”  he nodded towards Bradley.  “Walker, your going to feel some pain.”

            Walker didn’t know what Trivette was talking about it.  Why did he have to have this stupid disgusting twig in his mouth?  Without warning pain rushed up his leg causing him to holler.  The pain was so unbearable he almost had to cry.

            “Okay, it’s set.”  Bradley said.  “You did good Walker.”

            Trivette removed the stick.  “Good job Walker.”

            The pain still throbbed in Walker’s leg making the rest of his aches and pain seem minor.  The pain in his chest though made it hard to breath.

            He licked his lips.  “Trivette, can’t...”  everything went black.

            “Hang in there Walker help will be here soon.”

            “Look you guys!”  Terry yelled running into the shelter.  He held up two cell phones.  “They still work!”

            Quickly Trivette stood up and took a cell phone.  He dialed Gage’s number and pressed send.  But all he got was static.

            “They won’t work in the mountains.”  he threw down the phone and took the other one from Terry.  When he pushed send on that one he heard a ringing.  Smiling he waited impatiently for somebody to pick up.  Finally on the tenth ring he heard Gage’s voice in static.  “Gage, can you hear me!”

            Gage whooped and hollered.  “Trivette that you?”

            Sydney abruptly stopped in her tracks when she heard Gage.  “That can’t be?”

            Gage ran into a room so he could hear Trivette.  “Trivette, how’s Walker?”

            “Alive!”  Trivette started to break up.  “We....seven....ors....”

            “Trivette, your breaking up.”  Gage huffed.  “There are seven survivors?”

            “What?”  Trivette’s voice was just static.  “Get...now.”  then silence.

            Gage closed his phone and ran to Syd.  “Their alive!”  he gave her a hug. 

“I’m going to go to Denver and see what I can do.”

            “Okay, are you going to fly?”  Syd said with worry in her voice.

            He stopped in his tracks.  “Yeah, I am.”  he went up to her and smiled. 

“Don’t worry I will call you when I get there.”

            Syd nodded.  “You do that.”  when Gage left she went down to the ICU for infants.  When she got there she saw Alex sitting in a wheelchair looking through a window.  “How is little Cordell doing?”

            Alex had to smile.  “Doing really good.”  she touched the window.  “They said that he was having some trouble breathing but that has gone away.”

            “How much did he weigh?”  Sydney asked looking at the small baby.

            “Five pounds.”  she sighed.  “Doctor Smiths says his healthy though.”

            She took a deep breath.  “Alex, Gage got a call.”

            “So.”  Alex looked up when Doctor Smiths walked out of the ICU.  “How is he?”

            Doctor Smiths nodded solemnly.  “His holding his own.”  he sighed deeply. 

“He is healthy and has no problems but with these premature babies things can turn around.”

            “Okay thanks.”  Alex turned to Syd.  “Sorry, the call that Gage got must have been in important or you wouldn’t have brought it up.”

            “Gage, got a call from Trivette.”

            Alex quickly got up.  “Their alive?”

            “Yes and now Gage is going to Denver to check things out.”  she gave Alex a big hug.  “Everything is going to be okay.  Trivette and Walker will be home before you know it.”

            Trivette tried to sleep but with the nagging pain in his shoulder it was impossible to do.  Looking at Walker he noticed that Bradley was right about infection.  Infection started to set in on Walker’s burns making him really sick with a fever.  The other burn victim the business man was also in the same condition.

            Shivering Trivette curled into a ball and tried to keep warm. That was nearly impossible to do with the howling storm that threatened to blow their shelter down.  Why must there be a winter storm at this time of season right now?

            “When do you think rescuers are going to be here?”  said Elaine the stewardess.

            James shook his head.  “I don’t think their coming.”

            “They gotta be coming.”  Terry said.  “We’ve been on this mountain now for over three days.  There has gotta be somebody coming here.”

            “Their coming.”  Bradley winced when he moved.  “How’s Walker?”

            Trivette turned to his friend who was sweating profusely.  “Not good.”

            Bradley slowly went to Walker and shook his head.  “He has a high fever. 

And those burns don’t look to good.  He needs medical attention soon.”  he turned to the business man.  “He does too.”

            Terry shook his head.  “I have faith.”  he blew into his hands.  “Help will be here.”

            Elaine started to pass a bottle of water around.  “Well, it’s been four days and the storm is still stronger then ever.”

            Trivette looked at Walker who was moaning in his sleep.  He pulled the blanket tighter on Walker’s body then laid back down.  Where was Gage?

            James went over to Trivette.  “Thought you called your friend and got word form him.  What happened?”

            Trivette shrugged.  “I don’t know.  I’m hoping they didn’t forget about us.”

            The next morning the sun shone brilliantly into the shelter waking Trivette up from a fitful sleep.  Rubbing his eyes his stomach growled making him almost moan in pain.  In the last week he has barely eaten anything or drank anything.

            Slowly sitting up he looked over to Walker who was really pale. Checking Walker’s  pulse he realized that his pulse was really weak.  He started to get worried and called for Bradley.  But Bradley didn’t wake up instead he laid deafly still.

            “Brad!”  Trivette ran up to the young man.  “Brad, you alive?”  he didn’t move.  “Don’t you die on us now!”

            “What happened?”  James said limping towards the still form.

            Checking Bradley’s pulse Trivette felt a strong pulse.  “Bradley, wake up.”

            Bradley gradually opened his eyes.  “Hey, guys.”  he winced.  “What’s wrong?”

            James patted Bradley’s shoulder.  “Thought you were dead.”

            “Hey, guys do you hear that?”  Terry said standing up.

            Straining his ears Trivette heard what sounded like a faint yell.  Hastily Trivette ran out of the shelter and noticed that the storm had stopped.  Looking around he saw the wreck of the plane but something moving in the distance caught his attention.  Squinting he noticed that it was snowmobiles and horses.

            Excited he started to wave his hands around frantically.  “Hey, over here!”

            “Somebody is alive!”  a man yelled.  “Hurry, before we get hit by another storm.”

            A man on a horse came up to Trivette.  “Sir, are there any more survivors?”

            “Yes, there’s six of us.”  he looked behind him to see James limping out. 

“We got two men who are in critical condition.”

            “Okay.”  the man waved at the snowmobiles.  “Let’s get these people off this mountain and get them to a hospital.”

            In Dallas, Alex held little Cordell for the first time since he was born five days ago.  He was so small and fragile that just holding him made Alex almost cry.  Rubbing Cordell’s dark hair she had to smile though.  He was such a beautiful baby.

            Sydney smiled as she caressed Cordell’s face.  “He’s a beautiful baby.”

            “Sure is.”  Alex looked up when Gage walked in.  “Hey, there when did you get into town?”

            Gage shrugged sheepishly.  “Been in town for a couple of days.”  he sat down in a chair wearily.  “Went to Denver but was told to go back.”  he rubbed his face.  “I tried to tell them that they were alive but they wouldn’t listen to me.”  he shook his head.  “I tried Alex I really did.”

            Alex gave Gage a slight hug.  “It’s okay.  I know you did.”

            Suddenly a doctor ran into the room and asked for Gage.  Confused Gage followed him till he reached the nurses station.

            The doctor handed the phone to Gage with a smile.  “I believe you should take this call.”

            “Hello?”

            “Gage!  This is Trivette.”  his friend’s voice came in clear meaning he was on a regular phone.  “Thought you were up here looking for us?”

            “I was but Alex needed me here too.”  he started to laugh with excitement. 

“So, you guys are where right now?”

            “Were at Denver Hospital right now.”  Trivette seemed to quickly quite down.  “Walker, is in critical condition though.”

            Gage nodded.  “Okay.”  he sighed.  “Listen I’ll be up there in the next flight.  Do you want me to tell Alex?”

            “Yeah.”  Trivette hesitated.  “Have her come up if she wants?”

            Gage almost had to hide a smile.  “Well, right now she’s nursing a baby.”

            Trivette nearly shouted.  “No, way!  Is it a boy or girl?”

            “Boy.  Name is Cordell James.  He weighed five pounds.”

            Suddenly it hit Trivette.  “He’s a preemie.”

            “Yeah, but don’t worry Cordell will be fine.”  Gage sighed.  “Don’t tell Walker.”

            “Good point he will want to leave the hospital when he wakes up.”  Trivette was distracted by something.  “Hey, gotta jet but please tell Alex that I will take care of things here.  I don’t want her to come up here with the baby.”

            “Okay, gotcha.”  Gage said by then hung up.  When he walked into the nursery he smiled.  “Their alive!”

            Alex nearly stood up but remembered Cordell.  “That’s great but I can’t go.”

            Gage nodded.  “I will go and Syd you stay here okay.”

            Sydney nodded.  “Okay, but be careful and keep us posted.”

            When Trivette got off the phone with Gage he followed Doctor Joan to Walker’s room in ICU.  When he stepped into his friends room he had to gasp.

            Walker was hooked to nearly every machine possible.  His right arm was rapped in white bandage and his chest showed ugly bruises and burns. 

Studying Walker’s face he could see that there was something shiny on his burns.

            Doctor Joan sighed.  “His strong and he should make a full recovery eventually.”  he looked at his clipboard.  “There was a very nasty cut on his leg that was infected but fortunately it isn’t really bad.  The burns were infected also but with skin graphs we should be able to fix that.  And we are trying a new method on his face but I don’t know if it will work or not.  He will have a scar on his face no matter what we do.”  he then looked at Walker’s leg.  “His ankle was broken in two places which will take some time to heal.  I would like for him to stay in the hospital for at least a couple of weeks.”

            Trivette nodded.  “Thanks.”  he winced when he moved his injured shoulder. 

“Walker is a fighter I know he will make it.”

            As Doctor Joan left he went over and sat by Walker.  “Hey, buddy.  You’re going to be okay don’t you worry.”  he took hold of Walker’s hand. 

“Everything is going to be okay.”  Walker curled his fingers around Trivette’s.  “That’s it fight.”

            “Hey, Doctor told me I could come in.”

            Turning around Trivette saw Terry slowly walking in.  The young kid had a deep bruise on his cheek and above his eye.  He seemed to be shaking pretty bad but Trivette knew that was mostly from not eating right in the last week.

            “Terry, how you doing?”  Trivette said getting up.

            “All right I guess.”  he looked at Trivette worried about something.  “I need to ask you something Mr. Trivette.”

            “Okay, shoot.”

            Terry started to bite his lip.  “I tried to see if Bradley was okay but the hospital said there was no such person named that from the survivor group.”

            “There has got to be.”  he sighed.  “Have you checked with the flight list?”

            “No, not yet.”  he smiled.  “James is going to be okay but right now his in the burn unit.  The doctor was amazed that he didn’t end up like Mr. Walker here or that business man.”  he shook his head.  “Course he had only first and second degree burns.”   he looked at Walker.  “How is he?”

            Trivette smiled.  “Doing good.”  he had to smile more when he thought about what Gage told him.  “He will be doing better when he goes home to see his new baby.”

            Elaine walked in just then smiling.  “Hey, guys.”  she gave them all a hug.   “How are you guys doing today?”

            “Good.”  Trivette looked at the beautiful brunet.  “You look really good.”

            She laughed.  “A nice hot shower can do wonders for a woman.”  her smile faded when she saw Walker.  “Is he going to be okay?”

            “Yeah, he is.”  Trivette looked at Terry.  “Hey, Elaine do you remember Bradley?”

            “I sure do.”  she started to play with her hair.  “He was flying to Los Angeles for a new job at a hospital.  He was going to move in with his brother I think.”

            Trivette stunned.  “You know that much about your passengers?”

            “You start talking to them and you get attached to them.”  she gave Trivette a look of bewilderment.  “Come to think about it Bradley wasn’t sitting in the tail section of the plane he was in first class.”

            Terry started to pale.  “The first class was obliterated.”  he looked around frantically.  “Everybody that survived the crash wasn’t in first.”

            “I’ll do some research into it.”  Trivette tried to shrug but winced. 

“It’s probably just a fluke.”

 

One Week Later

 

            The hospital was busy as usual when Trivette walked in with Gage.  He couldn’t believe that it has been nearly two weeks since the accident.  His shoulder had healed nicely and so did his other injuries.  Walker was also healing nicely but still had the burn graphs to go through on his right arm and chest.  Also Trivette noticed that the burn on his face was leaving a very deep scar.  Hopefully Walker wouldn’t mind it.

            Walking into Walker’s room he saw that his friend was trying to stand up.  A nurse tried desperately to have him sit back down again but didn’t work.  Walker even weakened by injuries was much stronger then the tiny nurse.

            “Walker sit down now or I have to call Alex and tell her your not obeying the doctor.”  Trivette said with a smile.

            Walker looked at Trivette and shook his head.  “This is getting real tiring not able to do anything.”  he winced when he moved his right arm.  “I’m ready to go home.”

            Gage went to Walker.  “One more week.”  he sighed.  “Your doing really good and your making a strong recovery.”

            “I know.”  Walker sat down wearily and smiled.  “My arm is getting a lot better.”

            The nurse helped Walker lay back down.  “Okay, I’m going to check your leg.”  the nurse slightly touched Walker’s leg.  “The burn looks really good and so does the cut.”  she checked the cast on Walker’s ankle.  “There’s no swelling on the ankle either.”  she smiled.  “Your making a miraculous recovery.”

            “Miraculous recovery?”  Walker huffed.  “Gage did you hear that I’m a miracle.”

            Gage had to pat Walker’s shoulder.  “You are a miracle.”  he turned to Trivette then turned back to Walker with saddened eyes.  “The business man passed away this morning because of complications.”

            Walker quickly paled.  “Oh man.”  he looked at Trivette.  “Did you find anything about Bradley.”

            Trivette sighed.  “Yeah, his full name was Bradley West.”  he looked down at his hands.  “He’s body was found in the wreckage.”

            “What wreckage?”

            “The plane.”  Gage said.  “Bradley was killed instantly in the crash.”

            Walker swallowed hard and laid his head back down in the pillow.  So the man that helped them was an angel or a ghost?  But how could that be?  Bradley was alive like everybody else he couldn’t be dead.

            “That can’t be true.”  Walker barely managed to get out.  “Look again Bradley has to be alive and out there somewhere.”

            Trivette slightly nodded.  “Okay.”  he tried to smile.  “Hey, I’ll talk to Doctor Joan and see what he thinks about you leaving here any earlier.”

            Walker shook his head.  “Thanks okay.”  he laid his head down.  “It’s just one more week and hopefully by then I’ll be able to move my arm without pain.”

            “Hey, is it all right if I come in?”  Terry said stopping at the door.

            Burton waved at Trivette.  "Hey!"

            “Sure come in.”  Walker said almost beaming when he saw the young kids.  “So, what are you two up to?”

            Terry started to cry.  “I’m leaving today to go back to Miami.”

            Burton shook his head.  "Same here."

            Gage hugged the boys.  “We’ll see you two again.”

            “That’s not it.”  he went to Trivette and buried his head in his chest.  “We’re flying.”  his body started to shake.  “I don’t want to fly!”

            Realization hit Trivette like a ton of bricks.  All of them will have to fly home sometime could Trivette handle being in another plane after what happened?

            He hugged Terry.  “Don’t worry everything will be all right.”

            “Terrance, we’ve been looking for you.”  said a lady as she walked in.  She looked at Walker sheepishly and quickly walked out.  “Sorry.”

            Burton chewed at his lower lip.  "Well, I just came in to say good-bye.  Parents are waiting out front for me."  he hugged both the men.  "Hopefully talk to you soon."

            Walker wondering why she walked abruptly out looked down at his gown.  Then he remembered what his face looked like.  There was a burn on his right cheek that was very deep and may leave a really nasty scar.  He hasn’t looked in a mirror yet so he didn’t know what he looked like.

            Trivette quickly went out to talk to the woman then had her come back in.  She didn’t look at Walker instead she took Terry by the arm and asked for him to leave.  Terry stayed his ground pleading at Gage with hurtful eyes.

            “Hold on a sec ma’am.”  Gage took a piece of paper and wrote down an address.

  “This is where you can get a hold of all of us.”

            Terry nodded.  “Thank you.”  he went around and hugged everybody.  When he

came up to Walker he smiled.  “Thank you sir.”

            Walker winked at the young kid.  “No.  Thank you.”  he tried to move to give Terry a hug but pain stopped him.  “You take care of yourself.”

            “Oh I will.”  he wiped his tears.  “But I’m still scared.”

            Trivette gave the kid a big hug.  “Don’t worry.”  he smiled.  “Everything is going to be okay.  Nothing is going to happen.”

            “Thank you.”  with that Terry left with his mom.

            Gage shook his head smiling.  “Poor kid.  How old is he?”

            “Eleven.”  Walker slowly laid his head back down then groaned when a nurse came in.  “Please don’t tell me it’s that time already?”

            The nurse just nodded.  “Afraid not.”  she parked a wheelchair by Walker’s bed.  “You know you will have to go through this routine till your burns heal.”  she along with Gage helped Walker into the wheelchair.  “If we don’t do this you won’t heal.”

            Walker nodded.  “I know but I even haven’t to admit that it hurts when you guys do that.”  he gritted his teeth when the nurse moved his arm to where it was sitting in his lap.  “How much more of this do I have to do?”

            “Till the burn is all gone.”  the nurse sighed.  “It could take a year or more.”

            “Great.”  Walker smiled at Trivette.  “Lucky you don’t have to go through this.”

            “Well, I still have this bum shoulder.”  he gently patted Walker’s shoulder.  “You take care now and don’t fight to much with the nurse.”

            When Walker was out of the room Trivette decided to see how James was doing.  Walking just a few feet down the hall he came across James room.  Peering in he could see that his parents were sitting by his bed.  The father turned around and smiled motioning for Trivette to come in.

            “James has talked a lot about you.”  he sighed.  “But he’s going through a hard time right now.  Four of his friends was killed in the crash and he’s really not talking much.”  he started to smile.  “But he talks a lot about you and your friend Walker.  Also about his Bradley guy, Elaine, and Terry.”

            “Can I see him?”

            “Oh sure.”  the father shook his head.  “Sorry I didn’t introduce myself.  My name is Lane Morris and that is my wife Judy.”

            Judy slowly stood up and smiled.  “Nice to meet you Trivette.”

            “Hey, Trivette.”  James gradually pushed himself into a sitting position. 

“Thought you were never going to see me.”

            “Well, been trying to keep Walker company.”  he went to the bed and saw that James had burns on both legs and chest.  “How you feeling?”

            “Really good.  Doctor said that I could leave this hospital anytime that I wanted to.”  he nodded towards his parents.  “But they don’t want me to yet.”  he shrugged.  “I don’t blame them but I really would like to go.”

            Trivette had to chuckle.  “You remind me of Walker.”  he sighed.  “Here’s my address so you can write Walker and I.  And if you have a computer here’s my email.”

            “Thanks.”  James tried not to cry.  “I will surely going to miss you guys when I do leave.”  he took a deep breath.  “You didn’t know anybody who died in the crash did you?”

            “No.  I didn’t.”  Trivette rubbed his face.  “Walker and I were going to LA to escort a prisoner.  But I feel like a piece of me went with the plane.”

            James sniffed his nose.  “Really?”

            “Yeah. I mean sometimes I feel bad cause I survived.”  he shrugged.  

“Sometimes I wish I was dead to get rid of this nagging pain in my heart.”

            “That’s exactly how I feel.”  James gave Trivette a big hug.  “Oh, I thought I was the only one.”

            “Your not.”  Trivette sighed and turned to Gage.  “What’s going on?”

            Gage only shook his head.  “Sydney is on the phone.”

            Trivette looked at James.  “I gotta go.”  he smiled at the teen.  “I’ll talk to you later.  And keep that chin up.”

            When Trivette was out of the room he went to the phone.  “Syd, what’s the matter?  What’s wrong?”

            She laughed.  “What do you mean?”

            Quickly Trivette turned to Gage and shook his head.  “So, how goes it?”

            “Doing really good.  Cordell still has another a week to stay in the hospital and Alex is going home today.”  she seemed to be smiling.  “Things are looking up here.  How about over there?”

            Trivette shrugged.  “Well, Walker is doing great.  He’s in getting the burn graphs done now.  Tell Alex that he will call later.”  he smiled.  “Thanks for calling.”

            “Oh no problem. You take care.”

 

Eight Days Later

 

            Walker sat in the small plane plastered to his seat his breathing very unsteady.  He didn’t want to show his fear of being in a plane again but with the constant turbulence he couldn’t help but to be afraid.  Glancing at Trivette he could see that Trivette was in the same boat.

            “Hey, Walker how you holding up?”  Trivette said smiling at his friend.

            “Doing all right.”  the plane jerked a little making Walker gasp.  “Okay, this isn’t good.  The pilot better not be playing with our minds.”

            Nurse Cathy went over to Walker.  “Mr. Walker your heart rate is incredibly high and your not breathing to well.”  she gave Walker an oxygen mask breath deeply sir.

            Walker tried to brush the mask away but nearly screamed when he moved his right arm.  Gritting his teeth he graciously excepted two pills which he knew would help with his pain. He swallowed the pills and smiled at her.

            “Thanks Cathy.”  he took a deep breath.  “I hope this plane ride is over soon.”

            After three hours the plane touched down in Dallas causing a cheer to escape Trivette’s lips.  Gage had to smile at Trivette’s reaction.  If Walker was awake he would probably be doing the same thing.

            “All right you guys let’s go home.”

            At the ranch Alex walked around making sure all the decorations was in place.  She was so excited that both her boys were coming home today she couldn’t stay still.  Looking around satisfied she turned to Sydney and smiled.

            “Sydney, how is Cordell?”

            She smiled.  “Sound asleep.”  she hugged Alex.  “Congratulations again.”

            “Thank you.”  Alex looked at the clock.  “They should be coming home any time now.”  she started to laugh in glee.  “I see a car now!”

            Quickly as she could she ran outside where a van was pulling up.  Gage got out then Trivette but Walker didn’t.  She knew he was alive but she really didn’t know how bad of condition he was in.  Oh she hoped he was all right.

            Gage went over to the passenger side and pushed a button.  A ramp slowly descended making Alex even more worried.  Was Walker in worse condition then Trivette or Gage said he was?

            Trivette came up to her and gave her a big hug.  “Alex, how are you feeling?”

            She nodded.  “Okay.”  she pointed to the van where Gage was climbing in. 

“What happened to Walker?”

            “He has a fractured ankle and his arm is burned.”  he smiled.  “His doing all right.  He just can’t use crutches so he’s in a wheelchair for now.”

            Alex waited patiently as Walker was rolled out into the ramp.  It seemed like he was sound asleep his head hanging really low.  But when Gage rolled him off the ramp Walker winced and gripped the handle of the wheelchair tightly.

            “Walker?  You okay?”  Alex ran up to him and had to hide a gasp.

            Walker’s face was burned on the right side from the chin clear to his ear.  His whole cheek was nasty red color and the burn seemed to be deep.  He also had a short sleeve shirt on which showed ugly burns on his right arm.  Looking down she saw that his ankle had a brace on it and saw a ugly bruise.

  She glanced up at his face again and noticed a deep scar over his left eye.

            “Walker, you going to be okay?”  Alex said kneeling beside her husband.

            “Yeah, I’m going to be fine.”  Walker smiled.  “I missed you so much.”

            She gave him a kiss on the good cheek.  “Welcome home Cowboy.”

            Suddenly Syd ran out.  “Alex, somebody is wanting you.  And he wants you

bad.”

            “Alex?”  Walker’s voice was choked.  “What’s going on?”

            She smiled.  “Gage bring him inside.”

            When Walker got inside his heart started to flutter.  Was he going to meet somebody or something?  Then he heard it a loud wailing coming from the upstairs room.  It almost sounded like a baby.

            After a few minutes Alex came down the stairs holding a tiny infant.  She cooed at the boy till he was quite then showed him off to Walker.

            “Walker, I would like for you to meet your son Cordell James.”  she knelt down so Walker could look at the beautiful baby.  “He’s a preemie but Doctor Smiths says he was healthy enough to go home as long as we keep a close watch on him.”

            “That’s great.”  Walker was so stunned he didn’t know what to say.  “Why didn’t you tell me?”

            “If we told you Walker you would’ve wanted to leave the hospital.”  Trivette shrugged.  “Besides we didn’t want to worry you.”

            Walker smiled and reached out for his son.  “Come here little Cordell.” 

Alex gently placed him on Walker’s lap.  “Wow, he’s so light and small.  You sure he was okay to leave the hospital?”

            “Yes, he was.”  Alex caressed Cordell’s small face.  “He’s a fighter just like you.”

            An overwhelming feeling went through Walker’s body.  He now was a father, he now had a family.  So, this is why God brought Bradley back.  Maybe it was to help Walker make it back to see his son.

            Looking down at his son Walker kissed Cordell on the forehead.  “Thank you.”