The Redheads of Mmm...Doctor!

Title: What's Left
Author: A. Magiluna Stormwriter
Rating: R for language
Pairings: Kerry/Sandy, Luka/Kerry friendship
Category: angst, friendship
Date: 22 April 2004
Series: n/a
What Has Gone Before: n/a
Summary: Luka reaches out to a kindred soul…
Warnings: Character death discussion…You've been warned.
Spoilers: “Where There's Smoke”…Anything including Kerry & Sandy's relationship is fair game.
Archive: ShatterStorm Productions…anyone else must ask first…

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 Laura Innes or Goran Visnjic.

Author's Notes: Written for purple_stardust's birthday. She initially asked for a Jareth/Sarah Labyrinth drabble, but I don't know the movie well enough. Her backup was something with Luka from ER. It was supposed to be a drabble, but ended up being so much more. And what scares me is I think I might have just written potential Kerry/Luka...I think I need to go lie down now....

“What's Left”
by A. Magiluna Stormwriter

She stood out there, alone on the rooftop, thoughts swirling around her like the wind-whipped snowflakes falling to the ground.

He knew what was on her mind just by her stance. He knew it well. Too well. There was only one other person that could possibly understand what she was going through. And they still weren't on speaking terms.

He debated going back inside, leaving her to her silent contemplation and her grief.

“How do you do it, Luka?” she asked softly, still not moving.

“You just do, Kerry,” he replied softly, moving to her side, attempting to shield her from the weather.

“It's not like I haven't dealt with death before.” Her words were soft, self-deprecating in a way. So very Kerry Weaver. “I'm a doctor. It's a way of life. But this time…”

He allowed her time to finish the thought. When a long moment had passed in silence, he took in the nearly imperceptible trembling of her body, and pulled her into a warm, comforting embrace. “But this time it's more real?” he offered, holding her closer as the sobs wracked her small frame.

“Does it ever stop hurting?” The words were so soft, he barely heard them over the wind.

He started to answer, but no words came out. His throat closed up as he remembered his wife, his children. Forcing himself to swallow down his own dredged up sorrow, he cleared his throat. “Not entirely, but you learn to live with the pain. You eventually learn to go on. And if you're very lucky, someone else will come along that will help you shoulder that burden.”

She pulled back at his last words, a brief flash of anger sparking in her watery green eyes. “I don't want to love anyone else. I love -- loved Sandy.”

“You love her, Kerry. Just because she's no longer here, it doesn't mean you have to stop loving her.” His voice is husky, forcing him to clear his throat again. “And I never said anything about you having to love someone else. I simply meant that there are other people who are willing to help you shoulder the burden of your loss.”

“You must be mistaken, Luka,” she retorted, stepping away from his comforting warmth. “No one here cares about helping me out.”

“Only if you continue to keep the wall up between you and them.” He took a deep breath, changing tactics. “These people have been through a lot this past year, Kerry. All of us, together. Or did you think only you mourned the losses of Mark Greene and Robert Romano? Or should I say you and Elizabeth?”

“She's obviously moved on from both losses,” came the bitterly sarcastic reply.

Luka counted to ten, in English and Croatian before he spoke. “She's still hurting, just like you are now. And you know, you two are lucky.”

“Lucky?” She whirled around to face him, angry red blotches standing out on her cheeks. “How the fuck do you figure losing your partner is lucky?”

“You both have your children still with you,” he finally whispered. “I lost my children with my wife. I have only memories left. You have a son, Kerry. A son that looks like your departed wife, granted. But he's your son and because of him, you'll always have Sandy in your heart. The same goes for Elizabeth with her daughter. I have nothing. Nothing but photographs and memories. So yes, you are extremely lucky, Kerry Weaver. Even if you're too damned stubborn to see it.”

“But what good is it going to do Henry if all he has are my memories? It won't bring his mother back. Hell, I don't even know if he'll have my memories. Not if his grandparents have anything to say about it.” She shrugged, her anger deflating. “Maybe he's better off with them anyway. I can't do this alone.”

“How long will it take for you to realize you're not alone, Kerry? We are all here for you, just as we were for Elizabeth when Mark died. Whether you believe it or not, these people care about you. But you're too caught up in your grief, in keeping personal and professional lives separated, that you don't see the helping hands being offered. In the end even Mark Greene dropped his feud with you.”

“Because he was dying.”

“Because life is too short and too precious to waste on grudges. And that goes double for your issues with the Lopez family. You've lost your wife. They've lost their daughter. Of course, they want Henry around. He's their last reminder of their daughter.”

“They want to take him away from me, Luka! Don't you get it?” she yelled at him, new tears spilling down her cheeks. “He's all I've got left of Sandy besides memories. If they take him away from me, I have nothing!”

“Welcome to my world, Kerry. At least your son is still alive.” He turned and walked toward the door. Stopping at the door, he glanced back at her, watched as she curled in on herself, her grief and anger blanketing her against the world. “Maybe when you can see past yourself, you'll understand that there are other people here to help you. Until then, I guess you're on your own.”

~~ fin ~~