Good Day Sunshine

Lizzie Hopkirk stepped gingerly down the steps of the bus, thanking the driver, before turning to face the building she knew so well, her second home. She waited for the bus to pull away before crossing the road, smiling at and calling a cheery 'hello' to one of her colleagues, dressed in the familiar blue uniform. She tottered a little unsteadily up the path, her four inch heels hindering her progress slightly, but she'd never do without them. A glance to her left at the doctors car park revealed only the top of Jill Weatherill's blue mini. She assumed the doctor had been called in to an emergency during the night. She frowned as she opened the white doors into the hospital; she hoped it wasn't too serious.

The reception are was still, quiet, probably at that moment the emptiest part of the hospital. But Lizzie knew far too well that in half an hour, the first eager patients would arrive for their appointments with the three doctors. And there would no doubt be a number of screaming children among them. She swore her hearing had worsened since working at The Royal.

She rounded the desk into the area behind reception, passing the table where the doctors frequently met for lunch or coffees, and where she'd learn lots of gossips she'd waste no time in spreading. Her coat was hung up as usual on its hook, and her bag placed under the reception desk. She'd just picked up the morning's post when the telephone rang. "Don't leave me to get myself sorted will you!" She muttered, picked up the receiver and sang a bright "Good morning The Royal." She listened intently, open up the book detailing the doctors appointments for the day and scanned the page. "Well I can send Doctor Goodwin out to you." She listened again then sighed. The patient was requesting 'that lovely Doctor Ormerod'. "I'm sorry but Doctor Ormerod's busy in theatre this afternoon. If it's as urgent as you say it is, you'll have to have Doctor Goodwin. He can see you at two this afternoon." The patient grumbled a few more times before finally agreeing to the young doctor. "Some people!" Lizzie exclaimed in exasperation after settling the receivor back in its cradle. At least, she hoped she'd put the phone down before speaking. She looked at the phone before shrugging. "If she did hear, serves her right!"

"Serves who right, Lizzie?"

"Oh Matron!" Lizzie exclaimed, jumping as Matron appeared without her recognition at her desk. "No one. Just... no one."

"Right..." Matron replied, clearing not believing her. "Any post for me?"

"Oh I've not gotten round to it yet. The phone rang as soon as I came in! And she took so long! Wanted to see Doctor Ormerod you see, wouldn't believe me when I said he was busy. He's anaesthetising for Mr Rose today."

"I see." Matron replied slowly, her eyes narrowing. "So it was a patient you were talking so politely about when I arrived?"

"What?"

"Never mind." The older woman raised her eyes to the ceiling. "Just sort out the post and bring it to me, ASAP."

"Yes Matron." Lizzie nodded, tucking a strand of her blond hair behind her ear. She cleared a space on the desk then placed the post into five piles like usual; one for each of the doctors, one for Matron, and one for Mr Carnegie. However, as she reached the end of the stack, there was one letter that belonged to none of the piles; it was addressed to her. That's strange, she thought. No one ever wrote to her at the hospital. But she placed it aside. Much as she was curious, she didn't fancy being the target for Matron's wrath. She scooped up one of the piles of letters, and made her way down the corridor, she heels clipping a rapid staccato rhythm on the polished floor.