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Cally Ber
by on December 1, 2022
It is the duty of a Hospital Corpsman to wait in obscurity most of his life for a crisis that may never come, but when it does, he must give it all he has. The duty of emergency medical response is a broad spectrum of military medics and the civilian doctor who goes sleepless into the Emergency Room within The States. The difference between bloodied gloves and tattered cammies only stops there for those who put others before themselves. Although locations may differ, the sights and smells of those who endure will always blend in an artistic horror.
Blinding lights flashing in the open and sanitized Emergency Room interior increased in strength from the sleek metal of the workstations. Nurses surround a patient that is suffering from a limb covered in blood from the construction equipment that he uses to work. Blue scrubs covering the individuals of the room so that they may not spread diseases or unnecessary contagion to the patient. The doctor matches along with the crowd within the silence of awaiting possible death, only the beeping from a heart monitor shows any break of reality. A scalpel is carefully picked up from a wide variety of utensils for this particular procedure. With slow and careful hands, the white plastic gloves holding the sharp blade cut into the flesh.
"Doc!" A scream broke out to wake the young man from his comatose. The Corpsman felt the sand fall from his flak jacket as he jumped up from the aftermath of an Improvised Explosive Device. With the exemption of the word that the Marine shouted, there was only silence made by a constant high-pitched noise in his ears. A bright sun hidden continuously behind smoke clouds and dirt blew into the sky from mortars that could barely be seen or used much as a stable light source. A Marine with a twisted and burned limb lay next to him, his buddy applying a tourniquet to stop the excessive bleeding the best way he knows how. The young Sailor dropped his small pack of mixed items onto the ground, spreading it open to reveal a combination of lackluster tools and medicine. His bare and dirty hands had no time to waste with torn gloves already used, he grabbed the morphine packet bare and stabbed it into the upper arm of the wounded Marine.
The beeping from an electric heart was the only thing that seemed to steady the Doctor as incisions slide into the skin, sounds from a box have never made him more at ease. The patient, yet so damaged, sleeps so peacefully with the help of anesthesia. Nurses are continually scrubbing and cleansing tools covered in a velvet color, with never a stain on the equipment except for the blood on the blue scrubs. Each time the man reaches out his hand from the patient, the Nurses knew what to replace the tool with so that it may go more smoothly. He looked over to see the eager eyes of young studying students, wishing one day that they may live in his shoes.
Dirtied goggles stared back at him with a shaking head and a despaired look, the Marine turned back to return fire at the enemy so the Corpsman may work. Near lifeless eyes stared back at him as the Sailor grabbed the black Sharpie Marker, writing the current time and blood type of the Marine on the ground. The young man shivered after dropping the marker, sitting down on a small brick mound as he prepared his weapon to combat the incoming enemy. All he wished for is some sound that wasn't the constant ringing in his head, but he wasn't sure if he wanted to hear the words of the patient as he closed his eyes. The morphine has worn off by now, but the patient seemed so peaceful the Corpsman could no longer look at him. The Sailor leaned into an embrace with the other Marine, wiping his eyes from the dust with his friend's uniform.
The Doctor leans back from the Nurse's hug; the room was loud with excitement that once again he was able to save just one more person. Once everyone left the Emergency Room, the old man looked once more at the patient's table that has been wiped clean with alcohol for the next one that will eventually come. However, in that doctor's eyes, the table was still covered in dirt, his ears still ringing, and that Marine again lay there in his blood-soaked cammies.
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