Chapter One: Sighting
Today was supposed to just be a normal "Take Your Child to Work" day, but spending time with my father, an exceptional doctor at one of the few hospitals in Forks, Washington, was not how I wanted to spend this day. It was supposed to be quiet and dull so that it would be exponentially better than wasting the day at my prestigious private school. Witnessing multiple cases of injured females between my age and my grandmother's age swooning over my 33-year-old father was unbearable. Of course I had inherited my father's good looks and got my share of ogling from the range of teens to young adults, even some women my father's age and older, but Carlisle Cullen out-shined me in this, as well as many other areas of expertise; one being his profound knowledge of science and medicine. The day seemed like it would never end and since I was underage, I was not allowed anywhere on the hospital grounds except my father's office and the cafeteria without my father's approval.
Boring. Another twenty-something was giggling her head off, red hair bouncing in all directions. Ugh, Carlisle just has to be so popular. Oh and now here comes the nurse... she works for him, can't she see that he's married? The ring should be obvious enough for her to see itཀ
But, no. She glares at the patient, Victoria, and then her expression immediately dissolves upon hearing my father's voice.
"Nurse Lauren? Yes, this is our last patient for today, Victoria–"
"You can call me Vicky."
"Vicky, is our last patient for the day," Carlisle repeated. "Vicky, Lauren Mallory. Lauren, Vicky." Turning to me, he continued, "I need to go check on the OR board to see if there are any last-minute schedulings before we can leave, okay Edward?" Not waiting for my response, he walked out the door. Poking his head back in, "I'll be back in a couple of minutes. I'm sure Nurse Lauren's evaluation of Vicky can serve as an example for you studies." And he left.
Again, shooting daggers at the patients, she sickly sweetly replied, "Yes, hello Vicky–"
"You can call me Victoria," the red-head stated boldly, with a pout on her lips after seeing that Carlisle left.
After twenty minutes of yet another routine examination, I felt as if my head was going to explode. When both the patient and the obnoxious scrub nurse left, I released a breath I hadn't known I was holding. My professor would surely chide me for being so dull and lifeless during a patient's check-up with the usual "How do you expect to be a good doctor with that attitude?" argument. I was just packing the last of my notebooks up as my father rushed into the office, frantically searching for his scrub cap and gloves.
"I'm so sorry, Edward. The ER just got a new arrival. She's only seventeen, around your age, right? Yes. She was hit in a car accident, both her left arm and leg were crushed and she needs surgery asap. You can watch in the Observation Deck if you like, I'm sure it would be more exciting than the other things I've been doing today and can serve as an out-of-class experience or something of the sort. Lock the door behind you when you leave..." Carlisle rambled. Panic usually does that to him. The girl must be in bad shape...
Carlisle rushed out, just as quickly as he had come in, once finding his needed supplies. Only seconds behind him, I strolled out myself and quickly closed and locked the door. Scanning the OR board to check to see where my father had gone, I found his name in bold CAPS:
ISABELLA SWAN, age 17 doctor: CARLISLE CULLEN
motor vehicle accident, traumatized left side, possible concussion
OR 3, observation deck
Trying my hardest not to run, but also not to miss any of the excitement, I half-jogged to the Observation Deck. Upon arrival, the dozen or so heads of my father's college students and hospital interns turned to see who it was that opened the door. Seeing me, they returned to observing Carlisle's and the other doctors' actions and words to prepare them for their futures. Intending to follow in Carlisle's medical footsteps, I would be watching his movements and every twitch of his hands, had his patient not been the most beautiful girl I'd ever seen.
Although she was under the anesthesia, her face held the most serene and calm expression, the corners of her mouth were slightly turned up into a small smile, as if she was having a dream worth smiling about. I wondered where she went to school and if it was near The North Olympic Pacific Skill Center private school, which was where I attended. By the time I had committed every contour of her face to memory, Carlisle was calling my name to leave.
"Sorry, Carlisle. I seemed to have forgotten my things in your office–" receiving a huge sigh from Carlisle, "–can I borrow your keys to the office to get my stuff?"
"Yes, Edward, but please, hurry. Esme's probably fuming that we missed dinner, I forgot to ask you to call her and tell her we'd be home late because of the surgery..." Carlisle muttered while rushing to call his wife.
I looked at my watch: 6 pm. Wow, a whole hour and a half late. Esme was going to flip that we didn't just leave at the end of Carlisle's shift. Running through the halls to get to my dad's office, I bumped into a patient's bed that was currently being rolled down the hallway.
"Sorry," I murmured, hoping to get to the office soon so that we could leave. I was starved and hadn't eaten for nearly five hours. When I looked to apologize to the patient, I took a double-take. It was her. The girl from the surgery and she was right here in front of me. And awake. There was no better time than the future, and my hunger almost instantly diminished.
"H-hi. I'm so sorry about that," I managed to stutter out before looking like a complete idiot staring at her.
"S'okay. Wasn't your fault. I, myself, am a rather clumsy person. I was in my truck and was drinking my coffee this afternoon. And when I went to put my mug down in the cup holder, it slipped from my hands and spilled everywhere. I reached over the seats to the glove compartment to get some napkins. It ends up my foot was still on the gas pedal the whole time and I was in the middle of the intersection when the light turned red and some blue van came skidding around the corner and rammed into my left side and totaled my truck," she gushed. Boy could she talk. Usually patients were out cold while under morphine. Huh, guess we found an exception. "Well, that's how I ended up here, bandaged and drugged up like a monkey."
"Um, yeah, my dad, Carlisle Cullen, was the surgeon who operated on you. I watched from the Observation Deck." Wowsers, Cullen. Way to make the smooth moves. Yeah, I know you because I was lustfully watching you while my father surgically fixed you up. That'll make her wanna screw you.
"Oh, really? Was it interesting?"
"Yeah, yeah, yeah. Do you two know each other?" the obnoxious Nurse Lauren interrupted. "Hey, Edward, why don't you take Bella to her room, I'm sure she won't mind. I have some other paperwork I need to get done for Carlisle." Ugh. The way she said Carlisle's name, it was wrapped with multiple intensities of love. Yeah, as if he would go out with her. Ever. Esme would drop-kick the little skank before she knew what hit her.
"Sure, I'd love to," I hesitated, "Bella...?"
A blush covered her cheeks. The morphine must be wearing off.
"Um, yeah, that's okay," she whispered, "is it allowed?"
"Sure, sure. Of course it is. Edward's been here long enough to know most of the ground rules, et cetera," Nurse Lauren mumbled while stalking off, probably looking for Carlisle to flirt with.
"Hey, Edward. Do you work here, or intern here? Or are you one of Dr. Cullen's students at the university?"
"Well, I'm just his son. I'm here for "Take Your Child to Work" day," earning myself a raised eyebrow, "to get out of school. Nothing special. I come to the hospital to skip. It's much more fun than The Skill Center."
"The Skill Center? Do you go there?"
"Yeah, I'm a junior this year."
"That's kinda far. Port Angeles? But then, why does your dad work in Forks?"
"We live in Forks, but I just go to The Skill Center because..." I paused, thinking of what the answer really was, "I'm not sure why." Again Cullen, you look like an idiot!
"Huh. Well I'm a junior at Forks High School. It's pretty nice, and so are the kids. Very friendly. They like new kids. I moved in with my dad last summer. We can go into details if we meet up some other time, maybe." A blush spread across her face and her neck as she realized the implications of her words. "I-I mean, if w-we ever see each other again."
Unfortunately, her room chose to appear at that moment, cutting off our conversation. I didn't know what it was about her, but she drew me in. Her soft, pale skin, contrasting with her deep brown hair that framed her face perfectly. The penetrating oceans of brown that were her eyes and her rosy lips captured my attention. If only I could capture those lips in between my own and slip my tongue through them and taste her glorious mouth while ushering a soft moan...
"Don't you need to be somewhere? I'm sure that Dr. Cullen wants to go home and eat after a hard days' work," she teased, startling me from my thoughts.
"Uh-um, y-yeah," I stammered, embarrassed at getting caught staring at her. "I was just leaving." I turned abruptly and walked out the door.
"Don't get lost!" she teased again. It was then that I realized that she was the only female patient of Carlisle's that didn't obsess over him. She had noticed me. The notion made me giddy and I skipped to my father's office. Quickly, I unlocked the door, grabbed my stuff and headed out of the room. Re-locking and closing the door, I left to meet up with Carlisle. This girl had turned my world upside-down.