Title: Emergency Rallying
Author: mylexie
Rating: PG for swearing
Characters: Elizabeth Corday, others
Prompt: 303. ER: Any character. There's a major incident of some sort at a LGBT-related place or event, and one of the ER staff is brought in with injuries.

Disclaimer: “ER”, the characters and situations depicted are the property of Warner Bros. Television, Amblin Entertainment, Constant C Productions, NBC, etc. They are borrowed without permission, but without the intent of infringement. This site is in no way affiliated with "ER", NBC, or any representatives of the actors.

Author’s Disclaimer: The characters nor settings are mine, and I'm not making money here.

Author's Notes: Feedback is greatly appreciated.

Someone's whistling in the hallway, and they're coming closer. Elizabeth Corday, sitting on a bed in the suture room, winces, not because of the way Abby's stitching the gash in her forehead, but because she's can just guess who's coming her way.

"Lizzie, Lizzie, Lizzie!" As always, Robert Romano's voice is loud and admonishing, and Elizabeth can't stand it. Not that having an opinion on it helps her any - the man's a shark when it comes to harassing colleagues, in particular female colleagues, and even more especially those he desires. There are days when it drives her to the brink, and today she's pretty close already. She grinds her teeth. If that man says just one word...

He stops in the doorway, leaning nonchalantly against the doorframe, arms crossed and mouth grinning. Completely ignoring Abby's look of warning - Elizabeth hadn't expected otherwise - he looks her up and down and shakes his head as if she's a recalcitrant child.

"What did you do now?" he says, but it doesn't sound like a question. Elizabeth is sure he knows exactly what happened to her. Things like this travel quickly through the grapevine, and it's not as if she's made any attempt to try for doctor-patient confidentiality. After all, it's not as if she's done anything wrong, and besides, she's livid at the woman who bashed her face in. When she was brought in, she was all but screaming in anger.

Never mind the black eye, the head wound and concussion (she hasn't thrown up yet, but it's not far off, she knows. For now, her anger keeps everything else at bay, but as soon as her adrenaline levels go down a little she'll have to find a bathroom.) - if she could, she'd go right back there and give that woman, her jeering friends, and the non-responsive bystanders a piece of her mind.

"I did nothing. So you can stop looking at me like that, Robert." Elizabeth takes a deep breath to try and keep herself in check. "Don't you have work to do?"

"Well, I was rearranging my schedule for the next week, but this is so much more interesting. Did you walk into somebody's fist?" He walks up to her, and if Elizabeth didn't know to stay put to avoid screwing up Abby's handiwork she'd move away from him. As it is, she grits her teeth and keeps very, very still. If he lays a hand on her, though, she's not responsible for the consequences. Rage is still running through her veins, and she may just take it out on him. As a doctor, she's not supposed to do harm, especially to innocent people, but there's only so much she can take. If Hippocrates didn't include a clause in his oath somewhere, she'll invent one. Besides, Romano is has never been innocent.

She doesn't deign to respond to his question. It's absolutely superfluent: there's no doubt he knows what happened, or he wouldn't be enjoying this so much, and she won't give him the satisfaction. Instead, she raises an eyebrow (the one over her left eye. She can't move the right one.) as if to dare him to touch her. If he does, she'll slap him, even if it means the gash will scar.

Romano must have noticed the warning signs, because he doesn't touch her. His fingers move up to touch the swelling skin around her eye and nose, but he lets them hover without quite making contact. When she glares at him, he lowers his hand with a smirk.

"It's your own fault," he says. "You're the one who has to go and rally for the poor little gay people." He snorts. "You should just let them get beat up for themselves. You're not gay, are you? Or did your husband dying make you decide to switch teams?"

It's a good thing that Abby's done stitching her up, because this is just one step too far. Elizabeth slaps his across the face, hard. The sound rings through the room, and for a moment there's silence. Then Elizabeth screams.

"You arsehole! You've got to be fucking kidding me!" It's good that Abby restrains her, or she'd be tearing into him right now. "This is the bloody limit!" Elizabeth never thought it was possible, but she's actually, literally seeing red. "Tell me you did not just say that!"

Romano's looking at her like she's grown a second head, unbelieving that she's just slapped him. Normally they get along relatively well, she likes him as much as she can like any bastard who wants to bed her and is discriminatory and rude, but right now, if she never sees him again it'll be too soon. Abby seems to be sharing the sentiment, because she's let go of her and is cussing under her breath.

Apparently the pandemonium's become loud enough to draw others into the room. Kerry Weaver comes running in, followed by John Carter. She sees them assessing the situation, John moving towards Romano, Kerry to her. The small woman lays a hand on her arm, probably to keep her from going after Romano and strangling him, but it's the final drop. Elizabeth bursts into tears, all the rage and pain of the day, the year pouring out of her.

John moves his head towards the hallway, indicating to Romano they should leave. Elizabeth is glad the surgeon complies, because she doesn't want him to see her like this. Not now. She's just got time to watch him roll his eyes at something John's saying to him and move out the door, before the earlier nausea returns with a vengeance.

Abby notices, and shoves a bed pan under her face just before she retches and proceeds to lose her lunch and breakfast. Crying and shaking, and with a pounding head, Elizabeth leans back against the bed. "Goddammit," she mutters. "I hate him. I fucking hate him."

Kerry and Abby move her into bed. Kerry checks her vitals, Abby hands her a cup of water to rinse her mouth. When the tears have dried, Kerry pulls over a chair. Abby makes for the door, but Kerry motions her to stay.

"What happened?" Kerry's curt, but not unkind. She looks at Elizabeth and Abby. When neither of them respond, she adds: "Well?"

Elizabeth sighs. "I assume you heard I got beat up at the Pride rally I went to?"

Kerry nods. Elizabeth can see the question in her eyes, but she goes on. "Well, Robert seemed to think it was my own fault for being there. Said..." She pauses a moment, an apology on her face for what she's going to say next, "that I should've just let the gays get beat up for themselves. Then he wondered whether I've become gay due to Mark's death."

She sees Kerry's face get red, and says: "Yes, that was my response too."

"I'm going to get him fired for this!" Kerry spits. "We've got a non-discrimination policy for a reason." She stands up. "I should've done this ages ago. With Kim. With Doyle." She's gripping her cane like it's a weapon. "I don't care if he got puked on a hundred times today, this is it."

"He got puked on?" Elizabeth asks, hoping to distract Kerry from going to the board now.

"Three times so far," Kerry says, satisfaction colouring her voice. "He was covering your shift in the E.R."

Elizabeth laughs. Serves him right. She rubs her eyes, wincing because she'd forgotten about the black eye, and sits up. "Kerry, don't go to the board." When Kerry looks at her unbelievingly, she explains: "You won't succeed. He's too much of an asset to the hospital. This isn't the worst he's done by far. Besides, this will give you leverage over him. Just write up a report, add John and Abby's testimonies, and hold it over his head. He'll be a puppy. As soon as he realizes what it exactly was he said, and to whom."

Kerry stares at her. "But aren't you angry?"

"Oh, I'm livid. But I'll get my revenge. I have some very flamboyant friends who might just develop an inexplicable crush on a bald, homophobic surgeon. In public, of course."

Abby laughs. After a moment, so does Kerry. "That'll teach him," Abby says.

"Oh yes," Kerry agrees. "And if it doesn't, I have just the thing for his next birthday party.

Elizabeth sinks back into the bed, exhausted now that all the drama is over. With a shaking hand, she grabs the cup of water and takes a sip. Kerry sinks down in the chair next to her. Abby moves to do the same, but then her beeper goes off. "Sorry guys, gotta run."

"That's alright," Elizabeth nods. "Thanks for the good care, Abby."

When Abby's out of the room, closing the door behind her, Kerry asks, sounding curious: "So, what were you doing at that Pride rally?"

Elizabeth shrugs. "Rallying." When she sees that Kerry doesn't think this enough of an explanation, she expands: "Does personal orientation have anything to do with wanting equality?" And then, when Kerry looks gratefully at her, "Besides, have I ever said I'm straight?"

The End.