“Bethany didn’t have an affair with your best friend. She also didn’t have a kid and not know who the father was. Julia didn’t just leave me; she left her daughter. That is fucked up, and there is not enough love in the world to forgive that or to fight for it.”
“Okay, fine, but do you agree with him?” I ask him, and he just shrugs his shoulders.
“I’m not saying I agree with him. I’m saying I think you would have fought harder.”
I shake my head and turn back to look at the screen. I want to argue with him, but instead, I ponder the words in my mind.
I spend Saturday and Sunday working in my yard. My yard. Doing what I want to do. I call in the guys to add a pool. I walk through the rooms and make a checklist of what I want to change and what I’m going to keep.
When I finally pull into work on Monday, I feel refreshed. Debra, our receptionist, smiles at me when I walk in. “Good morning, Dr. Walker. How was your weekend?” Her smile bright on her face. She has been with my father almost since the beginning.
“It was great, Debra. What about yourself?” I ask as I walk past her.
“Great.” She nods. “You have a full day ahead.” I nod, walking back to my office. I open the door, dumping my bag. Slipping on my white lab coat, I grab my stethoscope and throw it around my neck. I walk out to the middle of the practice where the nurses’ station is. It is almost like a hospital emergency room with the nurses’ station in the middle and the examination rooms in a circle.
“Good morning,” I tell the nurses who are all around sharing their stories of the weekend.
We have a total of five nurses with us. Emma usually works with my father. Olivia just started, and she usually handles the newer patients. Ava has been here for three years and is usually my go-to. If there is something I need right away, I give it to Ava.
Mia has been here the longest, and she works with all of them, making sure everyone is taken care of. Since she has the most experience, they usually bounce ideas off her.
Corrine works hard and plays harder. If I had to pick anyone who would try to hook up with me, it would be her. I, of course, would never put myself in that situation, especially after Bethany.
“Morning,” they all say.
“I heard we have a big day ahead of us,” I tell them, looking at the whiteboard with all the appointments listed. “Who is working with me today?” I look back at them.
“That would be me.” Ava puts up her hands.
“Lost the bet, did you?” I smile at her, putting my hands in my pockets. I’m a hard person to put up with when I’m working. It’s got to be go time every single time. The phone buzzes, telling us we just got an emergency walk in. “Let’s go, people.”
I clap my hands, getting ready for the start of the day.
The hours fly by today, so fast I don’t think I even chewed my lunch. I finally pick up my phone to look at my messages, and I’m flipping through them when I see one from Theo, the medical equipment supplier.
Hey, we are having a medical convention in two weeks. It’s from Monday to Wednesday, and your father already confirmed your attendance. See you then.
He knew I would have said no, so he went behind my back to my father. Asshole. I shrug off my lab coat and unbutton my cuffs, rolling up the sleeves. I sit down at the desk to begin finishing the paperwork from today, and it dawns on me that I didn’t think of Bethany all day. Not once. I smile. It’s going to be a great week.
I buckle my seat belt and take off for Hailey’s house. It’s been one week since ‘the outing,’ and she hasn’t collapsed in a heaping pile. All in all, I call it a success.
Walking into the house, I toss my purse on the couch and walk to the kitchen to find Blake, Hailey, her parents, and Nanny. “Hey, you guys.” I make my way to the coffeemaker, pouring myself a nice hot cup. “Whatcha looking at?” I ask as I pick up a picture of a house. The house looks cute and quaint. I flip through the pictures, taking in the backyard, and see another swing, but then I see the ocean and the calmness of it.
Blake fills me in on what was just discussed. “That is where Hailey is going to, as Nanny says, ‘find herself.’” He uses his fingers to air quote. I nod my head, my eyes never leaving the paper as I take in the swing in the front. I sip my coffee while sitting at the table when Hailey mentions selling everything. I look up to find Nanny’s eyes on me. We share a secret nod, and I know what I need to do. Nanny leaves when we sit down to eat.