Status: New

A Day at a Time

Introducing

It's Saturday, five days since Charlie has come home. Her studio apartment is small but filled with furniture. She will admit, it's not bad. Every piece she purchased with Melissa and her mom makes her smile. She had missed her family while she was in Vermont. They had gone to a nursery on their way to the apartment after shopping. Charlie went a little overboard picking up plants but she loves the green and they remind her of Stowe. She has at least one in every corner, hanging or on the floor. She's kept herself busy between family visits these past days learning how to build a living wall of moss. Some nights she does feel lonely, her mom and Melissa are the only people she knows here now. She misses her roommate, her job, her patients.

Charlie is getting ready for her first day of work, she's not exactly sure what to bring or what to wear. Back in Vermont she worked in a private practice and she dealt with the same bunch of clients. It's not that she doesn't feel prepared for the new job, it's that she doesn't feel prepared for the people. With emergency medicine, you never know what to expect.

She dresses in a pair of slacks and a blouse and carries her maroon scrubs and lab coat in her purse with her. As she's leaving down the hall the hall, she flashes Alexandra a smile. Alex owns the building and the bar downstairs, she is the only person Charlie has met so far that is worth remembering.

"Good luck at the job, you'll be great!" Alex yells to her before entering her own apartment.

The hospital is huge and overwhelming, nothing like back home. Eric, the chief of emergency, is giving Charlie the tour. There are 50 beds in the emergency wing, he tells her sometimes they need more and have to bring them in from the rest of the hospital. She nods along with what he is saying but is too busy looking around to really comprehend anything.

"This is nothing like home," she admits.

He chuckles, "You will be fine. We are all here to help and excited for you to join our team."

Eric leads her to the staff lounge and introduces her to Julianne, a nurse who has worked in this hospital for 15 years. She is middle-aged and petite with chestnut hair and a bright smile. He informs Julianne that she will be assisting Charlie today, helping her find her way around and work with the patients. Charlie is relieved that she does not have to go through today alone. Before leaving, Eric gives Charlie her pager and advises her to page him if she needs anything.

"Please, call me Jules," She introduces herself politely. "Get ready for a fun night, it's only five o'clock now but wait until nine rolls around, that's when we start seeing the good stuff."

Charlie chuckles at her enthusiasm, she guessed that working in emergency for that long would've hardened her but was glad to see she had someone she could joke with.

Eric wasn't kidding when he said that Jules would be there for Charlie. She's been her shoulder to lean on all night. It's only 10 o'clock and it's already been a long shift. She's seen one patient only there to seek pain medication, a man with a concussion and broken femur from a hit and run, and a young child who had choked on a marble.

Charlie is on the computer putting in her notes from the child's visit when Jules walks over briskly, "Okay Dr. Dae, our next patient is waiting on bed 14. Male, 29 years old. He was admitted about twenty minutes ago, dropped off by a friend. Pulse, respiration, and blood pressure are normal. He has wounds on his face, neck, and some pain in his right shoulder. Possible broken nose. He said he got into a bar fight, he's definitely under the influence."

Charlie sighs, these are the kind of people she hates. Maybe because they remind her of her father, maybe she just doesn't like assholes.

"Call me Charlie, we talked about this. Let's see what we have going on."

They round the corner to bed 14, Charlie pulls back the curtain to see a man sitting on the edge of the bed, his head in his hands. He lifts his head when he hears the curtain slide, he has dark blue eyes, short dark hair, and stubble that shadows his face. He's in dark attire, black jeans and a black t-shirt with a gold chain around his neck. Tattoos are scattered along the exposed skin of his arms. He's probably handsome, Charlie contemplates, but right now he looks like shit. Bruises surround his right eye and nose, he's bleeding from his cheekbone and a tissue controls the blood from his nose. He smirks up at her, "I thought they were grabbing a doctor. Listen sweetheart, I would love to sign something for you but I have my own things to tend to right now" and he points to his bleeding nose.

Charlie scoffs at him, who does he think he is? "Excuse me Mr. Gillum, but I am your doctor. Now if we make this quick I can get on with my night too." She gives him a sarcastic grin and picks up his chart.

"Do you have exciting plans for tonight? Maybe I can make them better, have you ever had sex on a hospital bed?"

Charlie glances up from the chart, looking at him obviously insulted. She looks over to his friend who is sitting in the guest chair, on his phone minding his own business, "Sir, how much has your friend had to drink tonight?"

He picks up his head and shrugs, "I don't know I left him for an hour then found him like this."

Charlie sighs and begins her exam. When she removes the tissue to examine his chin she notices a powder substance coating his nostril, "Gerald, what are you currently under the influence of?"

When she looks back at Gerald's face, his eyes have wandered to her chest. She drops his chin and rolls her eyes, "You're nose isn't broken, I'll have the nurses clean your face and we'll send you home with muscle relaxers for your shoulder. I wouldn't recommend taking them until you're sober. In the meantime, clean up your act."
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Finishing the next chapter now!