I'm technically proficient

...despite certain attitude issues

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I need help [RP for Lee] (spoilers for tonight's ER)
standing in the elevator
lockhart_md
After a strangely jarring conversation with the new hospital chaplain, Abby finds herself taking the elevator upstairs, to the surgical department. Making her way to her husband's office, she waffles outside the door, pacing, stalling.

It's not until she sees one of the surgical nurses casting a curious look in her direction that she knocks softly on the door, then pushes it open. She takes a deep breath, running her fingers through her hair, and lets the door close behind her as she steps into Lee's office.

She begins to speak but has to clear her throat before she tries again.
Hey...how's the leg feeling? She approaches her husband slowly, gesturing to his injured leg.

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The elevator door opens and she looks at him and shakes her head slightly, not wanting to discuss this while they're walking through the ER.

He understands that their conversation is put on hold for now as he follows her through the ER and out of the hospital.

She relaxes slightly when they walk outside, glad to be away from their coworkers, though she'll wait until they're in the car to continue their conversation.

He's a little slower getting to the car now that he has to deal with the uneven ground outside.

She stays close to him, recognizing his more careful movements, keeping an eye on the patches of ice.

He reaches out to grab her arm once, not wanting to slip.Sorry. Sometimes I really wish I hadn't moved someplace with even worse winters.

She holds onto his arm after he grabs her, and shakes her head. You haven't gotten used to it yet?

He'd shrug but that's hard to do on crutches. I'm used to it, I just don't enjoy it. Not when I'm hobbling around like a gimp.

She nods as they reach the car. Need help here?

If you can get the door? He asks, fairly confident he can handle things from there.

She uses her keys to unlock the car, then opens the passenger side door for him, waiting by the door for him to get in.

He sits sideways in the seat as he places the crutches behind him it he back seat of the car, hopeful that after a day or two he won't need them. Turning around and pulling on his seat belt, Lee looks at her. Thanks.

She nods and makes sure he's settled before closing his door and rounding the car to the driver's side. She slips in and fastens her own seatbelt before pulling out of the parking space. She's conscious of the fact that they'd left a conversation hanging in the elevator, but she's not sure how to bring the subject up again, or even if she should.

He'd like to continue their conversation, would really like to understand why she never comes to him when she needs help, but he doesn't know if he should push her right now. Instead he studies the passing scenery as they head home.

She takes her cue from him, keeping her eyes on the road, her mind on the tasks she'll have when they arrive home. The radio had been playing when she started the car, and she flips through the stations at random, distractedly.

He finally reaches over and puts his hand on hers, stilling the channel surfing. Is it me that you don't think you can rely on, or everyone in general?

She returns her hand to the steering wheel, gripping tightly. What?

You don't need me, or want to need me, whatever. Amounts to the same thing, doesn't it? He can't look at her as he speaks, afraid of how she's going to reply. You never come to me when things are hard, you want to do it on your own. I don't understand why. Why you didn't want me there when your father was dying. Why you wouldn't tell me you wanting a drink...do you think I'm incapable of being any help?

I need you. I *need* you. She swallows, not knowing how to tell him that, were it not for him and Lily, she may not even be trying right now. Doesn't know how to admit it to herself, even. I need you to help me with this. But you can't do it for me, Lee. It doesn't work that way.

I know I can't do this for you. He sounds bitter. But it didn't have to get to this either. You could have let me be there for you when you went to Texas. You could have told me what was going on when you came home. You could have said you needed help then. You never talk to me about things, not the important things.

Stopped at a stoplight, she turns to face Lee, though she can barely look at him. I shouldn't *need* help staying sober. Do you know what this is like? I should be able to do this...I hate this. She looks back at the road as the light changes and she pulls away from the intersection. I'm...ashamed of this, of me. Her voice is quiet, she almost hopes he doesn't hear her.

He hears her, doesn't agree with what she's saying but he hears her. But you can't. Why can you talk to your AA sponsor and people at meetings but not me?

She grips the steering wheel so tightly her knuckles turn white; all she hears is 'you can't' and it hurts, even though it's true. Because they know. They understand what it's like to fight with yourself like this, to want something so badly you should never want... She feels uncomfortably exposed; hopes she's not crying.

I'm your husband...Hands move through his hair in frustration. He doesn't know how to make her understand that he needs to be let in sometimes, that this being shut out of her life hurts him in ways he can't even describe. How am I supposed to be married to an alcoholic, be supportive of your attempts to stay sober if you won't even talk to me about it? When I said this wasn't you, I meant it. It's not the you I know because you never let me see you. You shut me out.

I don't want you to know this part of me! You shouldn't have to! She's surprised herself with the sudden outburst, swipes at her eyes as she turns onto their street.

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