“Hmm?” Not looking up from the chart she was reviewing, Dr Kerry Weaver waited for Randi to ask her question.
“It’s for you…” Randi thrust the telephone in the direction of the ER Chief, “… Lieutenant Lopez?”
“Thanks.” Focussing on trying not to grab the phone from Randi, Kerry failed to stop the involuntary half-smile that flashed across her face. Fortunately for Randi, Kerry also failed to notice the intense scrutiny the younger woman was subjecting her to.
“Lieutenant Lopez?” asked Kerry, emphasising the rank.
“Hi! I wasn’t expecting you,” admitted Sandy, dropping her feet down to the floor from the desk and sitting up more correctly in her chair.
“Why not?” Kerry was confused and, in her confusion, stopped reviewing the chart. Looking up, she caught Randi’s hurried attempt to ‘look busy’.
“Because I expected you to be with a patient. I was going to leave a message,” explained Sandy patiently, smiling as she pictured her girlfriend working through Sandy’s logic.
“I can take a message,” suggested Kerry, suddenly conscious that she was stood in the middle of the ER, surrounded by many of her staff, feeling like they were eavesdropping.
“You surrounded babe?” guessed Sandy, unexpectedly grateful for the tiny cupboard that 38 called a Lieutenant’s office. It wasn’t much, but it had a chair, desk (or footstool) and, most importantly, a door and a telephone, enabling her to make and take calls in relative quiet and near privacy.
“Yes.” Kerry hoped she wasn’t blushing.
“You’re blushing,” said Sandy, grinning as she tweaked her mental picture of her girlfriend.
“Trying not to,” muttered Kerry, once again marvelling at how well Sandy was getting to know and understand her. It still felt strange, every time Sandy did or said something that showed Kerry she was paying attention to the Doctor’s moods, mannerisms, likes and dislikes, but it was a good strange, and a feeling she was starting to crave and cherish… and hope she was creating for her girlfriend too.
“You finish at 8?” asked Sandy, deciding she’d probably teased Kerry as much as she dared to, with much more resulting in either Kerry hanging up because she’d gone too far (she knew she got a little further every time she tried) or one or other of them being forced to hang up if a call came in somewhere.
“I’m off at 6… thought I’d come by and take you to breakfast?”
“I’d like that, but it’s supposed to rain.”
“You can’t eat eggs when it’s raining?” Now it was Sandy’s turn to be confused.
“Don’t wait in the rain,” said Kerry quietly, certain she was blushing.
“Sure?” Although she was a reasonably frequent visitor to the ER when she was working and had met Kerry a couple of times outside, she’d not yet waited for Kerry inside the ER, because no matter how much she liked Kerry, she really didn’t like hospitals.
“The coffee’s ok in the Doctor’s Lounge…” began Kerry, just as she heard the alarm sound at 38, signalling the end of their call.
“Sounds like a plan, gotta go babe,” and, without waiting for Kerry to say anything, Sandy hung up, something that Kerry didn’t mind, knowing that if it had been a trauma she’d have done exactly the same thing.
Passing the phone back to Randi, who knew better than to try to pretend she hadn’t been listening, Kerry raised an eyebrow and waited for Randi to say whatever was on her mind.
“I’ll make sure the Lieutenant finds the lounge when she gets here Dr Weaver.”
“Ah…” For a moment Kerry was surprised, having been braced for some remark or comment before remembering that this wasn’t Frank, or Romano or anyone of the number of people who didn’t think she knew what they called her behind her back. This was Randi, who right now was looking… exactly like she always looked. “…thank you. I guess she’ll be by about 7.30.”
“No problem Dr Weaver, I’m on ‘til 9.” And, with a final half-smile at her evidently surprised boss, Randi grabbed the ringing desk phone with one hand whilst passing Kerry another chart with her other: it was time for the ER Chief to get back to patients.