How dare he! She glanced back at Abbi before stepping out of the cabin and shutting the door behind her. With her arms crossed over her chest, she stalked toward Ryan who was exiting his vehicle. “Who the hell is this? You know I don’t want anyone here!”
“Ella, I brought Doctor Macis with me. He’s a pediatrician in town, so calm yourself or I’ll have to detain you.”
“Detain me? How dare you? We’re talking about my daughter here.” She charged at Ryan, anger filling her, instinctively lifting her fists.
With one simple sidestep, he pinned her to the side of his SUV, wrapping his hands around her wrists before she could hit him. “This is the only way,” he snapped, his voice firm. “Either you stand aside and let him help Abbi or I’m loading her into the SUV and taking her to the hospital myself. Your choice.”
She glanced back to the man who had come around the side of the SUV; he didn’t look like any doctor she had ever seen with his low-slung jeans and shaggy, curly hair. His casual dress surprised her. The top buttons of his shirt were undone, and she wasn’t sure if his easy manner was comforting, unprofessional, or both.
She took him in before turning back to Sheriff Ryder. “You can’t do this. Get another doctor from another town…someone who doesn’t know.”
“Doctor Macis is new to Clearwater, he didn’t know what happened. If you don’t let him help Abbi I’ll make good on my promise.”
She shook her head. “No, I can care for her myself.”
“Ella, this is your last chance.” He used his free hand to reach for his handcuffs. “I’ll do it.”
Sheriff Ryder’s fingers dug into her wrists as the last light peeked through the trees, glimmering on his handcuffs as they came into view.
“Don’t make me choose risking my daughter or going to jail,” she countered.
“Ma’am, I’m only here to help, please let me see to her.” Doctor Macis stepped closer. “While you’re wasting time fighting us, your daughter could be getting worse. Now either let us help her or I’ll help him detain you. Instead of being there when Abbi wants her mother, you’ll be in the back of the SUV waiting to go back to the station. Is that what you want?”
“If you hurt her—”