First Page: Unpublished manuscript
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Parklane Medical Center was a hot bed for gossip and sucked as a place for exchanging confidences, especially those best left private. Too many big ears…and mouths. All of them looking for the next reputation to ruin.
Yes, the grapevine thrived and bore abundant fruit at PMC.
Allison Lackey, RN, CCM stopped at the door that opened onto the sixth floor patio and glanced over her shoulder. In the heat of the summer, it afforded absolutely no shade but was a great place to view the Fourth of July fireworks at night. It also guaranteed privacy as long as it was deserted, which at the moment, it was. Thank heaven.
Meryl’s text had said something fishy was going on and to meet her on the sixth floor patio at four-fifteen. Allison glanced at her watch. She was on time, but where was Meryl? It wasn’t like her friend to be late…for anything.
The heat of the late afternoon beat down unmercifully, even if the patio was on the east side of the hospital wing. Allison shrugged off her lab coat, walked over to the table, sat and set her Diet Coke on the wrought-iron table.
“Come on, Mer,” Allison said aloud, while she drummed her fingers against the table top. There was one more nursing home transfer to double-check. The ambulance hadn’t picked her patient up at four as scheduled. She’d already left them one message.
Friday afternoons were always the worst for getting patients transferred before the weekend, and now this weird text from Meryl—major interruption. Okay. Five more minutes, but then she’d have to get back to the floor and kick some ambulance company ass.
Five minutes passed slowly. Maybe Meryl, who was five months pregnant, had gone into premature labor. Maybe that’s what she meant?
No. She would’ve just said she was having contractions and to meet her on the FBU. As for the ‘something fishy’? Well, it was Friday.
Okay, poor old Ronald Ramsey was waiting for his nursing home bed. If she didn’t get back to the eighth floor nursing station, he’d be spending the weekend in the hospital and incur extra expenses. The nursing home wouldn’t take new patients on a weekend. So, Monday morning her supervisor would be on the warpath about wasted hospital days and ride Allison’s ass all day long.
Unable to wait any longer, she rose. Obviously, whatever Meryl wanted could wait. There were times like today, which always seemed to hit on a Friday afternoon, when she wondered why, oh why, had she become a nurse?
And the answer was always simple: she’d never wanted to be anything else.