Thursday, September 22, 2011

The Doc Interview

Today I have the pleasure of sitting down with Doc. Doc is the heart and soul of the Rat Bastards. He is extremely kind, but he’s a bit shy. So shy, in fact, that he only recently revealed a few key points of who he is to me. Readers of this blog will notice a change in Doc but I think you will be pleased with who he has become.

The Doc Interview

Doc is the only Rat Bastard I didn’t have to hunt down and staple to the overstuffed sofa in Hell Kat’s library. For this, I will love him forever.

Me: You are the first Rat Bastard who actually showed up on time for their interview.

Doc: My mother was very punctual. I grew up thinking that being late would cause a tear in the space time continuum.

Me: That’s right! You’re the only Bastard with living parents. How are mummy and daddy?

Doc: They’re good. A few of their kids graduated from college a few months ago.
Me: I thought you were their only child.

Doc: I’m their only biological child. My mom runs a shelter for homeless teens. If they decide to go to college, Mom and Dad pay for their education. They’ve had thirty two kids graduate.

Me: That’s sounds expensive.

Doc: Yeah, I guess. Dad helps with fundraising. He’s Dr. William (last name redacted for national security). He helped design and performed the first successful heart operation using the Da Vinci Surgical Robot. He knows  a lot of deep pockets and forces them to donate to Mom’s shelter.

Me: Were your parents disappointed that you chose to become a Navy Corpsman rather than a doctor?

Doc: Disappointed? My parents? No. The only thing they care about is my happiness. I could have chosen to be a cab driver and if it made me happy they’d support me.

Me: They sound like good people.

Doc: They are.

Me: It’s nice to hear from someone who has a good relationship with their parents. You always hear about kids suing their parents because they made them eat cereal for breakfast every morning. I’m glad there are a few good ones still out there. I’m surprised you haven’t let a woman nail you down.

Doc: *Laughs* There is only one woman I’d let tie me down.

Me: Tie you down figuratively or literally?
Doc: *Laughs harder* Both, I guess.

Me: And why hasn’t she tied you down?

Doc: *Stops laughing* I don’t date patients.

Me: So drop her as a patient.

Doc: It’s not that easy. She needs…help.

Me:  Do you love her?

Doc: Yes, I do. And that makes this whole situations suck all the more.

Me: Good grief I feel like I’m in high school. Does she like you?

Doc: With her, you never know. She’ll flirt with you one second and yell at you the next. But I wouldn’t change anything about her. She has a lot to deal with right now. It wouldn’t be fair to her to add me and my feelings to the soup.

Me: All right, we’ll move on, but we will be discussing this later, off the record. You aren’t a Marine, but the Rat Bastards will kill anyone who says that. Do you like being a Rat Bastard?

Doc: Of course I do! I was an only child. The Bastards are my brothers. I love them.

Me: You’re a medic, but you do carry a rifle. Do you know how to use it?

Doc: *He nods* Shooter made sure I knew how to kill something before I went out on the first patrol.

Me: So, you have killed?

Doc: Yes.

Me: You’re job is to save lives, how were you able to pull that trigger?

Doc: It was easier than you might think. I had a Marine bleeding to death in front of me. When a man started shooting at my Marine, I killed him.  I’d do anything to protect a patient.

Me: Have you killed when you weren’t defending a patient?

Doc: Yes.

Me: And how did you handle that?

Doc: When I actually shot the man attacking my Bastards, I didn’t feel anything. After the firefight was over it hit me, I had killed another human being. I threw up in the corner of the abandoned school that had become our base of operations. The Bastards helped me through it. They didn’t try to justify what I’d done, they told me I never had to pull the trigger again. Shooter said he’d attach himself to my hip if thats what it’d take so I wouldn’t have to kill again. I almost took him up on his offer until I realized that if I took him out of the fight I’d be taking someone away who takes the protection of the Rat Bastards as seriously as I do. The next time I killed I looked at it differently. I saw the man as someone who threatened the health and safety of my brothers. In a way I was protecting my patients by preventing injury.

Me: Do you resent Shooter for teaching you to kill?

Doc: No.

Me: How do you deal with all the carnage you've seen?

Doc: I've been up to my elbows in intestine and covered in blood. I don't think anyone "deals" with what I've seen. You lock in a file cabinet inside your brain and move on. In the field you don't have time to think of the person you're treating. You treat the wound, not the man. When the bullets stop flying you deal with the emotional trauma. When I'm helping a soldier who's suffering with PTSD I think it helps me. We kind of work through what we went through together. 

Me: Do you have a good luck charm that you carry with you?

Doc: *Laughs* Yeah, a grenade landed right next to me and a wounded Marine that didn't go off. I kept it. I take it with me on every patrol.

Me: What do you want to do with your life after you're out of the Navy?

Doc: I'd like to get married, make some babies. I'll probably work with Mom at the shelter.

Me: Do you feel like the Rat Bastards appreciate your contribution to the team?

Doc: Do you appreciate air? Of course they do. I’ve sewn each and every one of them up. If I asked any of them for a kidney, they’d say yes. They’d say yes to any Rat Bastard.

Me: I’ve heard a rumor that you aren’t bad in a fight either?

Doc: I can hold my own. I know all the vulnerable parts of the body. I don’t think I’d ever go up against Switch or Hell Kat, I don’t have a death wish, but I can take care of myself.

Me: Speaking of Kat, you two seem like polar opposites, how do you manage to get along with her?

Doc: Hell Kat is like an attack dog. If she needs to she’ll rip your throat out, but she’ll only do it to protect her family. At the end of the day she’ll lie at your feet in front of a fire and let you rub her belly. She has the skill and fortitude to be very mean, but I think her natural nature is compassionate.

Me: I think you are one of the few people who really understands her Doc. But for the sanity of the rest of the world’s population, do you have a magic potion or herb in your bag that will tame the shrew?

Doc: *Laughing again* Like what, a hammer. There is no taming a tiger.

Thank you to Benjamin RussellHeaven Leigh Eldeen, and Andrea Truelson  for their questions. Two amazing authors and three even more amazing friends.

CRAP!! And Tawana Yanez, I almost forgot her! How could I have forgotten to thank the miracle worker of manicures! So sorry. Thanks Tawana!!


  1. An awesome interview! I think Doc has a thing for Kat. ;)

  2. very creative, as usual Katie!

  3. Katie, Doc represent the kind of man I aspire to be,without have to put up with Hell Kat of course. He is sure of who he is and what is important in life. He has that quiet self-confidence and positive view of life that draws good things and good people to him.

    That's why Hell Kat is in his life and why he is in hers. They compliment each other. Not in a romantic way, but theirs in a bond that can't be broken. I salute you for creating character that I care about and I can believe in.

  4. Benjamin, you have influenced Doc more than any other person. He is you.

    He and Hell Kat are two sides of the same coin. As you and I are. ;)