In the next few hours that followed, Hugh found that Tiffany had been true to her words. There was no sign of Liz Davis. Instead, a tall, youthful man knocked on his door. Hugh’s brow furrowed as he noted the sudden look of interest on Kelly’s face. Kelly, his big sister who was forever critical of all the men around her, including of Hugh himself, seemed to have been turned into mush by the doctor now approaching them.
Dr. Whitman smiled at Hugh first, then Kelly. Hugh watched in irritation as the man’s smile broadened when he turned to Kelly, with Kelly seemingly hanging on to his every word, “Good afternoon, Mr. Regan, Miss Regan. I’m Dr. Adam Whitman and I’ll be taking over from Dr. Davis, going forward.”
Hugh frowned as he watched Kelly nodding mutely, seemingly having lost her ability to get actual words out of her mouth. He smiled formally at Dr. Whitman and replied, “Nice to meet you, Doc. If you could just let Tiffany know there’s nothing wrong with me, so I can get back to my work right away, that’d be great.”
It was Dr. Whitman’s turn to frown. He looked at the iPad in his hand, then back at Hugh and replied, “I’m sorry, Mr. Regan. There seems to be some confusion. Dr. Liz has written up a bunch of tests here you need to go through. I understand the blood and urine samples have already been collected and sent to the lab. But there are a couple of other tests she’s written down. I’m afraid one of the technicians is away today. He’ll be in tomorrow though, so your test will be done the first thing tomorrow morning. The results will be out by the next day. If the results conclude everything looks fine, then I’ll send you on your way right away.”
He gave a toothy smile to Hugh, which Hugh assumed was meant to reassure him. Looking at the still-goofy look on Kelly’s face, Hugh had no doubt the smile worked at least on the female patients, and no doubt on some of the male patients too.
Dr. Whitman continued, “You’re a strong, young man, Mr. Regan. I’m sure we won’t keep you longer than we need to. Until then, just sit back and enjoy your vacation here, ha-ha. Let your beautiful sister here stay a little longer with us too.”
Kelly blushed with pleasure. Really? Hugh thought and looked heavenward. Why were his days suddenly being filled with pretty young women and rascally lotharios? Perversely, he suddenly felt a longing to see the pretty young doctor again. He told himself her no-nonsense, surly demeanor was infinitely preferable to this man’s slick, smug attitude that made Hugh desperately want to throw up, if only to wipe the sickeningly adoring look on Kelly’s face.
He addressed Dr. Whitman gruffly, “I think maybe Dr. Davis is being a little too cautious, you know? Like you said, I’m strong and really don’t need to be here any longer. Here, why don’t you ask Dr. Davis herself? Kelly here could go and fetch her.”
He nodded at Kelly, who gave him a dazed “Huh?”
Hugh’s voice rose in annoyance, “I said Kelly, could you fetch the good Dr. Davis, please? There seems to be some sort of a mistake.”
Kelly looked at Hugh in surprise, and frowned at him, as if she were accusing him of waking her from a happy, trance-like state, “Umm, sure, I’ll just call the reception from the intercom here and let them know.”
Hugh shut his eyes. He wished he were in his office so he could scream to his heart’s content. Tim’s peaceful face suddenly came to his mind and his face softened. He shook his head. He’d made a promise to himself that he’d lead a quiet life. That meant no shouting and screaming, he reminded himself. Especially not in front of people who didn’t deserve it at all. People like his assistant, Tim. And to be fair, people like his big sister, her barf-inducing worship of Dr. Whitman notwithstanding.
He kept his eyes shut as Kelly and Dr. Whitman spoke about everything under the sun other than his treatment plan or the test he needed to take. Hugh didn’t mind. He didn’t feel like answering any more questions or having to make small talk with the insufferably slick doctor anyway.
His eyes opened the minute there was a knock on the door. The next instant, Dr. Davis walked in. Hugh felt his spirits lifting immediately. He told himself it was only because he could actually converse with her knowing she would answer him brutally honestly, and not with the glib oiliness of the other doctor in the room.
She looked at Hugh and gave him a surly nod. Hugh couldn’t blame her. He had no doubt she’d gathered that he’d asked for her to be kicked out of his care team. And yet, mused Hugh, now he’d give anything to have her back on the team. Life was weird.
The next instant, Hugh’s soaring spirits crashed back to reality as he watched Elizabeth turn to Dr. Whitman with the same goofy expression his sister seemed to have adopted permanently.
“Did you ask for me, Dr. Whitman?”
Hugh heard the unmistakable note of hope in her voice and couldn’t help watching with heightened interest. He’d never have believed the rude, mouthy doctor he’d met earlier could go all gooey-eyed around a man. That too around someone like oily Dr. Whitman. Just wow, he thought. Overnight, women around him seemed to be falling for snakes.
‘The CEO’s Favorite Doctor: A Wholesome Romantic Comedy’ by Bhakti Mathew