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The Mr. Edison, You Done Me Wrong Blues
by Wanda Hargrove

"Hey, guys," called Johnny as he walked into the station. He was carrying something in a bag.

"Hi, Johnny. What's in the bag?" Marco Lopez asked as he joined his co-worker.

"Well, it's a new fluorescent light. Our days of trying to see the dishes, especially at night, are over," he crowed in delight.

"I'm all for that." Suddenly a sinking feeling hit Marco. "Uh... Johnny... You're not thinking of hooking it up, are you?"

"Of course I am."

"You haven't forgotten that little fiasco with the TV, have you?"

"Marco, it's okay. I installed one last night and it works great."

"Famous last words," Marco muttered under his breath.

"What did ya say, Marco?" Johnny asked.

"Oh, it was nothing," Marco replied as he watched Johnny grab the tool box and head into the kitchen area of the dayroom.

Johnny stopped at the supply closet and grabbed the step ladder. It was quite a sight watching him struggling to get all the items into the dayroom at one time. One minute Johnny was standing and struggling; the next minute he found himself on the floor.

Roy, who was leaving the dayroom, looked down to see his partner in the floor. "Uh... Johnny, don't you think you ought to get off the floor?"

"How about giving your best friend and partner a hand up," Johnny smiled sheepishly.

Roy reached out and gave Johnny a hand up, and silently picked up the step ladder. I'm not even going to ask.

"Hey, Roy, set it up over there next to the sink," Johnny pointed with the light in his hand.

Roy set the step ladder up and then hurried out of the room.

Johnny set the tool box and light down on the sink. He opened the tool box, laid out the tools he'd need and then climbed up on the ladder.

"Hey, Roy, can you hand me the screwdriver?" He held out his hand.

"Hey, Gage, think it'll rain?"

"No, Chet. I'm waiting on Roy to hand me the screwdriver!"

"Well your gonna be waiting a long time, Pal. I saw Roy take off out of here like a shot."

Johnny looked down, noticing for the first time that Chet was right. "Why don't you hand me the screwdriver, Chet?"

Chet shrugged his shoulders and handed Johnny the asked for item. Johnny began installing the light. Soon he was finished and called over to Chet, "How about flipping the light switch?"

Johnny stood on the ladder looking up when Chet the switch. "Don't blame me if something goes wrong, Gage."

Johnny heard something that sounded like an electrical surge, but before he could say anything there was a loud bang sound. Sounded almost like a gunshot, and Johnny was splattered with glass.

Johnny leaped off the ladder with his hands to his face. He landed on the floor on his side, and Chet ran over to him grabbing his hands and pulling them away from Johnny's face, all the while Johnny moaned in pain.

Chet screamed, "Roy, Cap, Anybody! Call in a Code-I, Johnny's hurt!"

Roy ran into the dayroom to find his partner's face covered in blood. "What happened, Chet?"

"I... I don't know, Roy. I flipped the switch, the light started coming on, and boom, it exploded."

"Hold still, Johnny," Roy chided his partner. "Let me take a look at your face."

Johnny tried to hold still as Roy gently cleaned away some of the blood, but there was just so much glass.

Captain Stanley walked into the room, "What happened?"

"The light that Johnny was installing exploded on him."

"Danger prone Gage," Stanley muttered.

Roy got on the biophone contacting Rampart. After a brief discussion, with Marco and Chet's help, Roy loosely bandaged Johnny's eyes.

*****

At Rampart, Dr. Early closely examined Johnny's face and eyes once all the blood had been rinsed away. "Johnny, you're a very lucky man." Early patted John's arm kindly.

"How's that, Doc?"

"Well, these lacerations should heal without any scaring. Also, your eyes didn't have any glass in them."

Johnny smiled slightly. "Thanks, Doc, can I go back to work?"

"No, I'm keeping you here overnight and Roy can pick you up in the morning."

*****

Captain Stanley looked up at the sound of the squad backing into the bay minus one paramedic. "How's Johnny?"

"Dr. Early said he was fine but wanted to keep him overnight for observation."

Stanley shook his head in disbelief, "You know Roy, Gage has done some pretty boneheaded stunts before, but I can't believe he actually miswired that light."

At that moment, a little man with graying hair entered the station. "Captain Stanley?" he asked.

Stanley blinked down on the man, "Yes. Can I help you?"

"A... Chief McConnike sent me here. I'm an electrician with the power company. We had a nasty power surge this morning and we've been busy answering calls all over the place. I had to get the chief's permission to come down here and check this station."

"Power surge?" Stanley questioned as the implication of the man's words suddenly hit him.

"Yes. It happened about 8:20 this morning."

Both Roy and Stanley looked at each other. About the time of Johnny's accident...

"Uh... Roy... Why don't you take him into the dayroom and show him the light that Johnny was installing this morning."

Stanley walked back into his office feeling like a heel. Gage's accident wasn't really his fault.

*****

Chet, Marco and Mike all looked up at Roy as he led the electrician over to the sink.

"What's up, Roy?" Chet asked curiously.

"This guys an electrician. He said there was a power surge this morning about 8:20."

Roys words hit them all like a ton of bricks.

Chet walked out to his locker and retrieved something, then handed it to Roy. "I think Gage might like to listen to this."

"What's in it, Chet?"

"A Stevie Ray Vaughn tape. I think right now Johnny could use something to listen to... like the blues."

Mike looked up at everyone in the dayroom. "I think right now Johnny would probably be singing the 'Mr. Edison, you done me wrong blues.'"

The others silently agreed.

The End.