Missing Scene - Retribution
by Sara

This scene takes place the night before the final day of Horatio's court martial, in the hospital.

 

Everyone had left, Bush and Kennedy were left alone with only
the light from a flickering candle illuminating their cell.
Painfully, Bush pushed himself up, so he could see Archie.
Hearing the sound, Archie turned his head, the candlelight casting
shadows on his already pale skin, but gilding it slightly.

"How are you feeling, Mr. Kennedy?" Bush asked, realization
that Archie wouldn't survive finally sinking in.

"I'm dying, Mr. Bush." Archie replied, coughing. "I think
you may call me `Archie' under the circumstances." his tone was wry.

Bush suppressed his emotion at Archie's comments, and
attempts a levity. "It would be an honor. You may call me `William'
for as long...." his words trailed off.

Groaning, Archie turned on his side. His blue eyes deeply
shadowed with pain, and slightly fever bright. "You can say it,
William, for as long as I have left."

Bush marveled at Archie's composure when speaking of his
death. He realized Archie had come to terms with his injury, and had
accepted the outcome. His eyes widened as Archie pushed himself into
a sitting position. Blood began to ooze from the wound in his
chest. Bush motioned for him to lie back down, but Archie shook his
head.

"I need to be able to move, William." Archie's teeth were
gritted against the pain, but his voice was strong with determination.

Bush watched him swing his legs over the edge of the
bed. "Why, Archie? What good will come of this?" his voice was kind.

"I intend to testify at Horatio's court martial tomorrow."

"Archie, they've already taken our statements, and they know
how ill you are. What can you add?" Bush, too, sat up. He hissed as
the stitches in his abdomen pulled with the motion.

"I'm dying, William, Horatio isn't." Archie answered. He
pulled himself to his feet, and then as quickly sat as waves of
nausea and dizziness washed over him. "There is one last thing I
can do for him."

Bush looked confused for a moment, and then comprehension
dawned, "You were there when Captain Sawyer fell." he said quietly.

Archie nodded. "No good would come from Horatio's being
hanged. They can't do anything to me."

Bush closed his eyes in sympathy, "Did you push Captain
Sawyer?"

Silence met his question. Bush opened his eyes, and looked
intently at Archie's white face. Pain, exertion, and the heat had
caused a sheen of perspiration to coat his skin. His eyes
were deeply shadowed, and their expression hidden. Bush nodded.

"I won't ask again."

"Thank you, William." Archie gasped, and he coughed again.

Bush stood, and stiffly walked to Archie's bedside. With a
light touch, he pushed him into the mattress.

"You will need all your strength tomorrow, Archie. Get some
sleep." Bush's fingers stayed for a moment on Archie's shoulder.

Breathing heavily, Archie nodded. "One more thing?" Bush
nodded. "Will you help me convince Dr. Clive?"

"I will do my duty, Mr. Kennedy, in assisting a fellow
officer." Bush said with dignity. Archie could hear the admiration
hidden beneath his words. Bush gazed down at him for a long
moment before a slight smile crossed his lips, "It would be my
honor." he nearly whispered.

Sighing deeply, Archie relaxed, content. Bush sat up
watching him sleep for many hours before sleep finally claimed him.

When morning dawned and Dr. Clive entered the hospital cell,
he was astounded to see both Archie and Bush dressed and waiting for
him.

"What is this?" he demanded.

Archie looked to Bush, who got to his feet. "Dr. Clive, Mr.
Kennedy has some additional testimony for the court, and wishes you
to escort him there."

"You are in no condition to go anywhere, Mr. Kennedy," Clive
said dismissively.

Archie winced as he pushed himself unsteadily to his
feet, "That may be true, Dr. Clive, but I will go to the courtroom to
complete my testimony. A message was sent to the members this
morning saying that I would be attending." his voice was firm.

"Very well," Dr. Clive grumbled as the guard unlocked the
door.

Archie turned to Bush, and extended his hand. "It was an
honor and a pleasure to serve with you, Mr. Bush."

Bush looked down to disguise the sheen of tears in his
eyes, "The honor was all mine, Mr. Kennedy."

Taking Archie's hand in his firm grasp, Bush stifled the
other words he wanted to say, but when he looked into Archie's face,
all those things were written in his eyes. Archie smiled, and
nodded. He pulled away, and walked out the door. Just as he was
about to leave, he looked back at Bush in the cell.

"Goodbye, William." his voice was soft.

"Goodbye, Archie." Bush replied. He watched as Dr. Clive and
Archie left the room. Tears slid quietly down his cheeks after their
departure. *That was our final goodbye. Would that I had as much
courage as you, Mr. Kennedy.*

*****************