Chapter Four

Oh, she takes care of herself
She can wait if she wants
She’s ahead of her time
Oh, and she never gives out
And she never gives in
She just changes her mind

June 23, 2006

General Hospital Operating Theater: Scrub Room

Patrick stepped over to the sink and stripped off his rubber gloves, tossing them into the trash next to the counter. He started to wash up and looked to Elizabeth who was washing up in the sink next to him. “I’m glad you took me up on the advice about becoming an OR nurse.”

“Well, you’re right–it is challenging and it’s better money,” Elizabeth said. She flashed a smile at him. “Even if you were just hitting on me.”

Patrick grinned back at her out of reflex but there was none of his usual charm or warmth evident. Elizabeth sighed and wiped her hands on a towel. “Have you see Robin or talked to her?”

“No.” He shrugged and started towards the door of the hallway before turning back. “You were…you were right. Last night–about me leaving.”

“Robin’s in a difficult place right now. You should let her come to you and just another piece of advice, Dr. Drake?” Elizabeth raised an eyebrow. “The words marriage and responsibility should never be paired together, okay?”

“I’ll keep that in mind,” Patrick told her as he pushed open the door and stopped when he saw Robin standing across the hall. She wore a pair of faded jeans and a pale blue tank top. Her eyes were red and her hair was pulled back into a limp ponytail, pieces of it curling over her ears.

“We should probably talk,” she said softly. “If you’re not–I mean, if you have a second.”

For a moment, he thought he would tell her no–that he was busy and she’d have to wait. But it was only a fleeting thought and it passed quickly. “Yeah,” Patrick agreed. He took her elbow and steered her to an empty operating room.

The corners of her lips curved into a small smile. “Déjà vu.” When Patrick said nothing, the smile faded and she cleared her throat. “I’m sorry. I don’t think I’ve handled this the right way–”

“There’s nothing to apologize for,” Patrick cut her off. “This–it all came out of left field and I don’t think either one of us is proud of what’s happened so far.”

“It was never that I thought you wouldn’t step up,” Robin said. “I mean, I was worried that you might not want to and that would make you resent me and the baby but I knew in the end, you would. I just didn’t want you to do it out of obligation.”

After a long moment, Patrick finally let out a breath. He didn’t realize how much he needed for her to tell him that she’d known he’d do the right thing–that she’d had faith in him. “I’m not sure how I feel about this yet. I’ve spent the last decade of my life telling myself a family–kids–that it wasn’t part of the plan.”

“I know and I’ve done the same thing. I was also worried about how you’d feel if the baby tested positive,” Robin admitted in a low voice. “Even with all the treatments available, there’s no cure and–”

“Robin, you’re not telling me anything I don’t already know,” he interrupted. “That’s why you were going to Paris?”

She nodded miserably. “I’m sorry. I shouldn’t have–kids get sick all the time, you know?” Tears pricked the corner of her eyes. “With HIV, it just takes one sickness and I don’t know if I could live with myself if something I did killed my child and I can’t imagine you’d be too thrilled with me–”

“Hey, hey….” Patrick gripped her shoulders. “Robin, the chances of the baby even testing positive are so small–”

“But it does happen,” Robin said softly. “And it’s a reality that I–we–can’t ignore.” She shook her head. “But we can’t think about that right now, I guess.”

“Right.” Patrick shifted and left his hands fall to his side. “I still think we should get married and raise the baby together. Maybe it’s old fashioned–”

“Maybe?” Robin scoffed. “Patrick, we’re not getting married, okay? It would be a horrible mistake and we’d drive each other crazy.” She let her head fall back and took a deep breath before looking at him again. “I’m not going to Paris, and I think we should talk about what comes next.”

Deciding to table the issue of marriage for later, Patrick nodded. “Okay, so do you have a doctor’s appointment?”

“Yeah.” Robin sighed. “I have an appointment with Dr. Lee in about twenty minutes.” She looked at her hands for a long moment before asking shyly, “Did you…did you want to come?”

“Yes,” Patrick drew out. “But I have another surgery in about fifteen. I’d reschedule but–”

“No, no–” Robin waved him off. “It’s just a preliminary one anyway. Alan ran the tests so I haven’t even been to see anyone else yet. I can–I can schedule the next one against your surgery schedule though.”

“Good,” Patrick nodded. “Because I do want to be involved, Robin. Thank you for not–for not shutting me out.”

“Thank you for wanting to be involved.” Robin hesitated. “I know things didn’t work out between us but I hope that we can be friends–for the baby’s sake,” she added.

“Of course,” Patrick smiled, but it didn’t reach his eyes. “For the baby’s sake.”

General Hospital: Nurse’s Station

“Did you hear?” Emily Quartermaine whispered as she stepped up next to Elizabeth.

“About what?” Elizabeth asked absently as she made her final notes on the surgery she’d been in earlier.

“Robin’s pregnant?” Emily prompted. “And according to the grape vine, Patrick’s the father.”

Elizabeth snorted. “I like how they add that part like it was ever in question. Robin’s not Carly after all.”

“I’m sorry, did I miss something?” Carly Corinthos demanded as she approached the counter. Her eyes sparked at the chance to duel with Elizabeth. “Have you got a problem with me?”

“Not today, Carly, but why don’t you check back in tomorrow and we’ll see?” Elizabeth suggested.

A nurse came over then and giggled to Emily. “I can’t believe this! He’s too sexy to be a dad!”

Emily coughed and attempted to steer the nurse away from the counter but Carly’s attention was caught. “Who’s too sexy?” she demanded.

“Dr. Drake,” the nurse giggled again. “He’s knocked up his ex-girlfriend, poor guy. Though it was bound to happen with the way he gets around. I’m surprised this is the first time.”

Emily sighed and Elizabeth just closed her eyes. “Sandy, go away.”

The nurse, Sandy, frowned. “Why? What’s wrong?”

“Little Miss Priss is pregnant?” Carly laced her fingers together and tapped on the desk. “Is she insane?”

“Should you really be asking that?” Emily asked pointedly.

“Go find a hotel room, Mrs. Smith,” Carly shot back. “Oh wait…” her lips quirked into a feral grin. “That was your name once, wasn’t it? Sonny always did have bad taste.”

Emily slapped the medical chart down. “That was three months ago, Carly, let it go.”

“Oh, never mind–” Carly dismissed the intern away. “That’s not important anymore. I can’t believe she’s going to be that irresponsible.”

“Again, I have to say, it’s interesting hearing this from you,” Emily said.

“Carly, look, you obviously have a point to make and we all know what it is, so can we just skip the latest episode of Carly’s An Insensitive Twisted Bitch?” Elizabeth asked.

“Hey, I’m not the one who’s going around spreading my disease,” Carly snapped. “Robin should know better–”

“You know, I’m so happy that I came at this particular moment.” A cultured, smooth voice spoke up from behind Carly and all three women turned their attention to the fashionably dressed brunette woman who had exited the elevators in time to hear Carly’s hateful remarks.

“Who are you?” Carly demanded.

“You know, that looks like–” Emily began.

“This is not going to end well for Carly,” Elizabeth said.

“I’m sorry, but I don’t think we’ve met.” The woman slammed her fist in Carly’s face and Carly went sprawling. “I’m Anna, Robin’s mother.”

Emily grinned. “I’ve been waiting a decade to see that.”

General Hospital: Dr. Lee’s Office

Dr. Kelly Lee sat across from Robin and nervously tapped her nails against the surface of her desk. “Robin, I respect your work as a doctor and I think you’re a very nice person.”

Robin frowned. “Well, thank you–”

“But I can’t be your doctor during this pregnancy,” Kelly continued. “I just–I’m not comfortable.”

“I don’t understand.” Robin shook her head. “Why would you be uncomfortable–” she broke off and clenched her fingers in her lap. “You’re going to be one of those disapproving people,” she said softly.

“I just–I don’t think you should take the risk,” Kelly said quietly. “I know the statistics and the treatments, but the risk is always there and I don’t agree with any woman who goes through with a pregnancy knowing that you could infect them with the virus. I can’t, in good conscience, be your doctor and feel this way.”

“Well, thank you for being up front and candid.” Robin stood. “I’ll just have to find another doctor.”

“Robin–” Kelly stood as well. “I am sorry but I can’t help the way I feel. I think it’s irresponsible to take that kind of chance with a child’s life.”

Robin nodded and numbly exited the office.

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