Doctor, Doctor

an excerpt

Chapter One

Wrestling with his uncooperative briefcase as he tried to pull out a file, Jayson hurried down the corridor toward his clinic room.

"Good morning, Dr. Barrett."

"Morning." Jayson waved a hand at the reception staff on his left. He wasn't sure which of the two ladies had shouted, and if he was honest, he could never remember their names anyway. Especially when he was giving them less than half of his attention.

Today he had morning gynaecology outpatient clinic and this afternoon was surgery. He also had a meeting as Head of Department after that. Bad timing, but at least it was then out of the way.

"Morning, Jayson. How are you?"

A wave of relief swept through him. He liked clinics when Millie was rostered as his nurse. A mother of three small children, she didn't work full time, but she was a good nurse and her bright, bubbly nature made her popular with staff and patients alike. It was particularly useful with nervous ladies.

"I'm good. You and the family?" He grinned at her, hesitating at the nurses' station outside his room.

"We're all good. No sick kids is always a bonus." Millie laughed as she fussed with the clinic list and checked notes that Jayson knew she'd have triple-checked already.

"What does the clinic look like?" Jayson already knew the answer. Melissa was his scheduler, a personal friend, and exceptional at her job. The clinic would be fully booked, as it should be.

"Full. Your first one's waiting. Overrun on your ward round?" Millie followed him into the clinic room, checking that the bed was ready for the patient to be examined if need be.

"Well, that's a surprise. Yes, afraid so. I had an elderly lady come through the emergency department. She needed a bit of a shoulder to cry on. You know how it is."

"I know how you are." Millie shook her head. "We should call you Saint Francis given the way you adopt waifs and strays."

"He's the saint for animals, not waifs and strays."

"At the last count you had, what? Three dogs, a couple of cats, and that parrot someone abandoned? Add to that the people you take under your wing."

"I'm far from being a saint. Now, give me five minutes to get into this detested computer system, and then I can see the first patient. Let me know if I have anyone not attend. I should really pop up and see Melissa. I saw someone in my private rooms who's going to need surgery fairly soon."

"If I spot anything, I'll shout out."

Logging into the system, Jayson ran down the list of names of the patients booked into the clinic, familiarising himself briefly with who he was seeing for follow up, and checking how many were new. So long as he didn't allow himself to get carried away chatting with those ladies who were older and liked to talk, he might even manage to finish on time.

The clinic ran smoothly, Millie subtly prodding him along if he spent too much time with a patient. One patient who simply failed to turn up gave him time to hurry upstairs and speak to Melissa. She booked both his clinics and surgery, and everything normally ran like clockwork. He just needed to make sure there was space on an upcoming list for the lady from his private rooms.

He stayed just a couple of minutes to review his theatre lists and decide whether this new case could be fit in, or if he'd reluctantly have to move someone less urgent. To his and Melissa's relief he decided she could slot it in with a couple of other, more major cases.

"I'll organise this for triage and get her booked in." Melissa waved his referral. "Catch you soon."

"You, too. And thanks." As he hurried back to his clinic, Jayson was already thinking ahead, and he was glad he wasn't on call over the weekend. Things were busy at work and he relished every minute of down time he got.

A friend had bought tickets to a food and wine match one of the better bars in town was hosting. He was really looking forward to it. A shout drew his attention. A doctor dressed in theatre scrubs raised his hand and Jayson sighed.

Dr. Brant Morrison was his senior registrar. The man was over a decade younger than him and as arrogant as he was gorgeous. Almost without thinking, Jayson reached up to smooth down his wayward hair. Not that he stood a chance of matching Brant's perfectly styled blond locks. With his tanned skin and even, white smile, Brant wouldn't look out of place on the cover of a magazine. He even made shapeless scrubs look sexy. Jayson was sure he looked like an unmade bed in his scrubs.

"I hear you're going to the champagne lunch at The Brasserie. I hoped to be there, but I have a hot date on a yacht." Brant smirked. "But I could be available later in the day for you?"

The silken purr of Brant's voice did things to Jayson's cock that should be illegal. Thankfully his chinos were loose fitting, and his shirt was untucked. He shook his head. "I don't think so. What would your current date think?" Sometimes Brant's comments seemed to border on sexual harassment, but there were never any onlookers around and in front of others, his professional persona was extremely well-polished. If he persisted, Jayson would be sure to have a stern word, but for now he decided to brush it off as Brant's excess of ego.

"She doesn't much. But she does have a very healthy bank balance. Pretty too, although you know I like rugged just as much."

"Yes, and I have no problem with someone who's bi. But I also like fidelity, Brant. A word you don't have in your vocabulary. Enjoy your date."

Brant's smile faltered slightly, then he turned up the megawatts. "Think about it, Jayson. After all, you're not getting any younger. You should live it up while you can."

Resisting another comeback, Jayson just waved and walked on. The barb hurt. He was only a couple of years over forty. Not exactly ancient, and as a doctor, he'd thrown himself wholeheartedly into his work. He loved bringing new life into the world, although obstetrics was only part of what he did in the small hospital.

Dismissing Brant from his mind, Jayson headed purposely back to his clinic. He would put his energy into enjoying one of his rare weekends off with some champagne, beautiful food, and the company of a good friend.