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I had a long conversation with Jennifer and Jim Thomas about Tai and how I had explained to Lexie that she was my priority at the moment. I also explained what Lexie and I had resolved between us and what we expected moving forward.
The rest of the day I spent with Maw Maw and Pops who to be truthful I considered them as my grandparents. It was good to be in their company again even though Maw Maw?s ability to be mobile had dwindled some. But it was nice to feel like part of a family again.
For the next few months things went along smoothly. Lexie had moved in with us and had become like a mother to Tai. They got along extremely well but Tessa seemed anxious around Lexie. I was not sure why, but it seemed like that to me. Maybe she felt that Lexie was replacing her and saw the relationship Lexie and Tai had.
Lexie had been true to her word and our relationship was better than ever. Tai was still training but there were no competitions that would accept her to fight except for the annual one here which I had her already enrolled in. Lexie was training with me on a daily basis and had regained her rock-hard body. She was even getting hit on at the precinct on a daily basis.
Cody had served his six months in jail and had been let out recently. He was on house arrest for six months and then would be on probation. I found out from Jennifer, Lexie?s mom because Lexie never talked about Cody. Jennifer and Cody?s mother had resumed talking but the relationship was still strained to say the least. A few weeks later I found out what had been bothering Tessa. She called me at the gym during one of her breaks.
She had broken up with Jason Patrick after catching him cheating on her multiple times. But she completely caught me off guard when she asked if there was any way that we could get back together again. She admitted she made a huge mistake, and she was aware of Lexie?s history with Cody. I explained that there was no way I would leave Lexie at this time. Tai and Lexie were very good together and I would never intentionally want to give Tai any more grief.
That night in bed I told Lexie about my conversation with Tessa. I explained that I wanted to be completely honest with Lexie. I did not want Lexie to ever distrust me. She appreciated the fact that I told her and said she understood Tessa?s situation. Lexie stated that she had made the same mistake but was able to correct it.
I dropped Tai off at school and went to the gym and knocked out my workout for the day. I was in the officer doing paperwork when my phone rang on the desk. I picked it up and noticed it was Jennifer, Lexie?s mom. The second I heard her voice I knew something was wrong.
"Chris?... I have to tell you something. Oh God??? Lexie?s been shot. We?re on the way to the hospital now. I don?t know anything else?? please hurry.", she sobbed.
I told the employees what had happened and ran out of the door jumping I to my car. I drove to the hospital as quickly as I could. I went into the emergency room and explained to the nurse at the desk who I was. She told me three police officers had been brought in, but she had no news about them. She told me someone would be with me soon.
I was there for about ten minutes before a police officer came over to me. He explained that three officers had been shot and two were in surgery now. He suggested I follow him to the waiting room where the families of the officers were. On the far sofa I saw Jennifer Thomas sitting alone. I walked over and she stood up and hugged me still sobbing.
"Do you know anything?", I asked.
"No, other than she is still alive. She is in surgery right now.", she explained.
"No one knows anything?", I asked.
After about thirty minutes, a police captain came over to us and explained the situation. Lexie and two other police officers were executing a warrant on someone for domestic violence. Apparently, another person was in the house that was wanted for attempted murder. When he saw the police officers, the suspect he thought they were there for him. He walked to the front door, opened it, and started firing on the three officers.
Ken Curtis was shot in the shoulder and neck. Lexie was shot twice as well. Once in the thigh and once on her left side. The third officer, Lewis Johnson was shot twice in the head and was pronounced dead on arrival. Officer Curtis and Lexie were still in surgery. Shortly after that conversation, Jim Thomas showed up in the waiting room. Jennifer filled him in in what was going on and that Lexie was still in surgery.
The wait was agonizing and close to an hour and a half before the surgeon who operated on Lexie came out to update us. She looked exhausted but did have a slight smile on her face.
"I?m Doctor Alvarez and I just finished with Ms. Thomas. She is in recovery right now, but you should be able to see her in a little while. She has several issues going on, but I am optimistic that she will make a full recovery. She was shot twice in the side and once in the upper left thigh.", she started.
"The leg is fine and will heal quickly. Both her spleen and liver were damaged but not severely. We had to operate and repair both, but I think she will be fine. We may have to go back in and remove her spleen if it doesn?t heal the way we think. We will monitor her closely.", she ended.
"Thank you doctor.", Jennifer said.
She promised that the nurse would let us know as soon as she was moved into a room in ICU. We all sat back down and waited with little to no conversation being had. It was getting late, and I had to run over to Tai?s school and pick her up but I promised to be back as quickly as possible.
I picked up Tai about forty-five minutes later and explained to her what had happened as we rode back to the hospital. We were in the lobby and about to enter the elevator when we ran into Tessa. I quickly explained what had happened and Tessa got on the elevators with us. We rode to the fifth floor and got out and headed to ICU. Tessa got us in right away and she ushered us in Lexie?s room. I was not prepared to see Lexie laying in that bed with tubes and hoses attached to her.
Tessa went over to the bed and checked a few things then went back out. She looked at Lexie?s chart and came back and told me that everything was looking good at this time. She told me that she would look at Lexie several times a day and keep me updated.
Tai and I sat on one of the small sofas in the room to wait and be there when Lexie woke up. Tai had her book bag with her and we started doing her homework. After thirty minutes or so, Tessa came back into the room and offered to take Tai home and let her sleep over. Then Tessa could take her to school the following day and I could stay here with Lexie. Tai was fine with that, so I kissed her goodbye and Tessa left with her.
About an hour or a bit later, Jennifer and Jim went down to the cafeteria to get something to eat. Jennifer told me that she would bring me something back with a soda. I moved over to the chair next to Lexie?s bed and took her hand in mine. She appeared so small and frail laying in that bed. It was probably thirty minutes later when I felt her hand move in mine. Lexie?s hand moved several times, but she had not regained consciousness yet. Jim and Jennifer came back about an hour later and I told them what had happened.
I went down to the cafeteria my self to get something to eat. I bought a sandwich and a drink and ate quickly. I took the elevator back up to ICU and found Jennifer and Jim standing outside the room. I looked in and saw several people working on Lexie. We were quickly ushered back to the waiting with very little information.
We waited for close to an hour before a doctor walked through the door. I carefully looked at his face and I did not like what I saw. Jim and Jennifer stood up immediately to see him. I could not tell a thing from his face as he stopped in front of Jim and Jennifer.
"Everything is fine for the moment. She had a slight spike in blood pressure, but it happens after that much surgery. She is resting comfortably now. We are going to keep her sedated for the time being.", he advised.
I pretty much lived at the hospital for the next few days with Jennifer and Jim Thomas helping me with Tai. My employees stepped up at the gym and basically took care of everything. I promised them all a bonus for the extra work as soon as I came back. Jennifer and Jim were there everyday but Jim had to work, and Jennifer had Tai.
I had left the hospital and went home where I took a shower and change. I stopped on the way back and got Tai some chicken nuggets which she loved. I went back up and that allowed Jennifer to go home and clean up. She mentioned that the doctor had told her that they were cutting back on the sedation. Possibly late tonight or in the morning Lexie would wake up. Jennifer told me she would take a nap and then return with Jim later that evening. Tai decided to stay with me and play on her IPAD.
Jennifer and Jim returned a little after six in the evening, but Lexie was still asleep. They stayed until nine o?clock and then took Tai and went back to their house. Jennifer would bring Tai to school in the morning and meet me back at the hospital.
I was sitting in a chair next to Lexie?s bed holding her left hand in mine. I must have dozed off because something started me causing me to wake up. It took a second to focus and I looked around the room, but I was alone. I looked over at Lexie, but she was still asleep. I leaned back into the chair and closed my eyes once more. Several seconds later, Lexie?s hand moved in mine. I sat up immediately and looked over at her.
I got up and leaned over the bed kissing her cheek softly. I was still bent over the bed when the nurse walked into the room.
"Everything alright?", she asked.
"Yes, she just moved her hand a bit.", I reported.
"Good, the sedation is wearing off. She should be awake soon.", she replied.
The nurse made her regular check of all the monitors and recorded a few results. She then promised to be back in about a half an hour. I had just sat back down in the chair when I noticed that Lexie had slightly moved her head. I stood back up again just as she slowly opened her eyes. She looked around the room and finally into my face. She closed her eyes for a second then reopened them with a smile on her face.
"Chris??? what happened.", she said weakly.
"You?re ok Lexie??. This is ICU.", I replied.
"Am I going to be ok?", she asked.
"Yes, you?re going to be fine.", I answered.
"Did we get the guy??", she asked.
"Not yet baby, but they are looking for him.", I promised.
"My partners?", she inquired.
"Curtis is still here in recovery, but Lewis Johnson died on the scene.", I answered.
She closed her eyes and tears ran down her cheeks. Thankfully just about that time the nurse came back in. She walked around to the other side of the bed and checked several monitors. She then leaned over Lexie with a smile on her face.
"Ms. Thomas, it?s nice to see you awake. I?m Tonya and I have been taking care of you. How do you feel?", she asked.
"I don?t know yet?.", Lexie replied.
"Well, if you need anything for pain, please let me know.", Tonya stated.
She moved around Lexie checking her pulse and blood pressure. She recorded all the monitor readings on her chart then put it back at the end of the bed. She poured Lexie a glass of water, put a top and straw on it then slid the bed table as close to her as she could. She informed us that she would notify the doctor that Lexie was up, and he would be in as soon as he could.
I sent a text message to Lexie?s mom Jennifer informing her that Lexie had come out of sedation. Although it was still very early in the morning, I think she would want to know. I set my phone back down and moved closer to Lexie.
"How long have I been here?", Lexie asked.
"Almost three weeks??", I replied.
"How many times was I hit?", she inquired.
"Twice baby, one in the leg and once in your side. The doctor will explain it all to you. Just please rest baby. You have been through a lot.", I assured her.
Several minutes later Lexie was asleep again, so I went across the room and sat on the small sofa. Around eight thirty that morning both Jim and Jennifer Thomas showed up to see their daughter. Thankfully, Lexie was awake and they spent some time together. I went home and showered then changed and went back to the hospital a few hours later.
It took ten more days before Lexie was discharged to my house. I would run into the gym for a few hours in the morning while Lexie?s mom would come over. I would return home a little after twelve and spent the rest of the day with her.
It took three months and a slew of doctor?s appointment and tests before Lexie was fully released from the doctor?s care. She went back to work part time until the shooting was fully investigated. She also came back to the gym and started to workout again although on a much easier routine.
Two months later we were back to our normal life. I was leery of Lexie going back to work but I did not say anything. I almost lost her to some senseless act of violence and one officer had been killed. We did not need the money, but I couldn?t expect Lexie to give up her career. Lexie and Tai had really bonded and for all practical purposes had become her second mother. We were laying in bed one night when Lexie brought up her job.
"Do you worry about me being out there?", she asked.
"I don?t think we should talk about that.", I responded.
"Why not?", she asked.
"Lexie, you know me as well as anyone ever has. You know I?m not scared of anything or anyone. But every time you walk out that door, I?m scared you will never come back through it. I?m not sure I could handle losing you. Even though I tried to fool myself??... I have loved you this entire time. That?s why no one could ever take your place. It?s been you all the time.", I admitted.
"After everything that happened between us ?... you still were in love with me?", Lexie asked.
"Afraid so?? I guess that why nothing ever worked out.", I replied.
Lexie was true to her word, and we lived together for many years although we never married. I had asked her a few times, but she always said we?ll do it soon. Soon never came but it did not diminish our relationship. Lexie and I were best friends, lovers and business partners. After fifteen years on the force Lexie retired and became my business partner at the gym. We did everything together and rarely ever disagreed about anything.
Tai had grown into a beautiful young woman who had excelled at everything she did. She maintained a perfect GPA through grammar school and private high school. She graduated at the top of her class both times with a plus perfect GPA.
She received a partial scholarship to Columbia University and we paid the rest. The acceptance rate at Columbia was only six percent. Out of every one hundred applicants only six were accepted. Tai entered the Postbac Premed Program which was one of the most rigorous in the country. She also received a Bachelor of Science degree in BSPS in the Pharmaceutical Sciences Division.
Tai was recruited right out of school by a major pharmaceutical company with an amazing salary and benefits package. She worked in Maryland so we did not see her as much as we hoped but after all she was a grown woman. Later she met a great guy and got married and moved to California where they both had amazing jobs.
They blessed Lexie and I with two beautiful grandchildren which were named Sara and Skylar. Lexie and I flew to California several times a year spending as much time as possible with Tai and the girls. I sent up two huge trust funds for the girls so that when they reached twenty five they would have every opportunity that life had to offer.
Lexie died at fifty-eight years of age from complications due to breast cancer. Thankfully she died peacefully in our bed with me lying next to her. Our last few months together were most enjoyable and we were together constantly. After I buried Lexie, I sold everything I owned and moved across the street from Tai and her family. The last years of my life were wonderful and I was even able to witness my granddaughter giving birth to my great grandson.
My body failed me a few years later but all in all I had a wonderful life surrounded by loving people. Tai was a great daughter, mother and wife and she made me so proud. Tai held my hand, and I passed peacefully having absolutely no regrets.
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