The next day Linda got up extra early to make up for yesterday and headed to work an hour early. Once Linda entered the building she was swamped with patients asking her when they would be seen. Linda rushed into the staffroom and put her things in the locker and left the room and headed to see Tess in her office. Linda knocked waiting for Tess to reply.

"Come in "Tess called out. Linda opened the door and walked into her office and closed the door behind her.

"Linda, were not expecting you until 9" Tess looked at her watch to see it was just after 8am.

"I came in an hour early just too well make up for yesterday really and once again I am sorry for yesterday" Linda felt like she was back in school apologising to the headmistress.

"Oh don't even worry about it, you are better today?"

"Oh yeah much better thank you"

"Good well that's all that matters, I appreciate you coming in early for me and well I better let you get back to work" Linda smiled at Tess and walked out of the room and closed the door behind her quietly and went straight to work.

Linda grabbed patient's notes from the pile and called out their name in her thick northern accent.

"Ruth Jones" Linda called out loudly to see a young girl hobble over to her with a large laceration to her right leg.

"Are you alright or would like me to get a wheel chair for you?" Linda asked seeing Ruth was having trouble to hobble.

"Oh no it's alright" Linda smiled at the young girl who smiled back feeling a bit more at ease now with Linda.

"I'm Linda and I'm a nurse. Ok, if you could pop yourself on the bed here and I will take a look" Ruth did as Linda asked and got up on the bed.

"How did this happen?"

"I was getting in my car heading to work when I fell and cut my leg open on the curb where someone had left an empty glass bottle" Linda leant closer to Ruth's leg to see small bits of shattered glass buried deep into her leg.

"Oh that sounds painful, are you in any pain at the moment Ruth? does it hurt any were else a part from the wound"

"Ruth shook her head "It's just the wound that hurts really more than anything" Linda nodded as she grabbed the trolley that she will use whilst dealing with Ruth's leg.

"I will be right back, just getting this I will need to clean this for you alright, try to stay still" Linda closed the cubical curtain and went to the supply draws and grabbed the things she needed. Linda opened the curtain and closed it again for privacy for Ruth.

"Ok, this may sting a little" Linda said as she removed the bits of glass and then clean the affected area. Once Linda was sure it was clean and well dressed she discharged Ruth and told her to take it easy. Linda's day continued to get busier and busier by the second. When half 12 came around Linda could feel her stomach rumbling as the last thing she remembered eating this morning was breakfast and that was 5 hours ago.

Linda took a much-needed break and headed to the cafeteria and grabbed a light brunch which consisted of a fruit salad a Twix and a small coffee. Linda purchased her brunch and took a seat at an empty table and began nibbling on her brunch. This quiet time helped Linda to think of things to ask Grace only not wanting to sit in an uncomfortable silence. Linda was in a day-dream when she next glanced at her watch it was more than time for her to get back to work but she didn't worry knowing Tess wouldn't mind her being a few minutes late back. Linda made her way back to reception feeling better after eating something. Half 3 came round quickly for Linda as she finished with her last patient before she headed to her locker to change out of her blue scrubs. Linda looked at herself in the mirror and applied a little lip gloss and a small amount of foundation under eyes to hide her tired eyes.

"You look fine now go or you'll be late" Linda saw Zoe walk into the staff room in her mirror.

"Thank you, can't talk got to go see you later at the pub?" Zoe nodded and waved her good friend goodbye.

Linda was lucky to get a space outside the café so she locked the car and rushed in and at a table and ordered herself a much-needed coffee as she waited for Grace. A few minutes later Grace walked into the café and walked calmly over to Linda who smiled at her daughter.

"Hi" Linda said brightly

Hi" Grace said back nervously

"So what do you fancy to eat "Grace shrugged and Linda wasn't sure what to say next so she grabbed the menu and began to look at the options. Grace picked up the menu and looked at the delicious options.

"So how was school" Linda asked nervously as she glanced at Grace and back at the menu.

"Schools, school. Is that all you came here for is to ask me about school?" Grace frowned.

"No, of course not, so have you chosen what you want?" Linda asked and Grace nodded.

Once they placed their orders they sat in silence until Linda broke the silence.

"So, who was that boy I saw you talking to yesterday? And what's his name?"

"I don't know" Grace shrugged again

"Can't we talk about something else please?" Grace pleaded. Their food arrived as they ate quietly for a few minutes.

"Why are you asking all these questions anyway?" Grace asked before sipped her drink.

"There's so much I want to know" Linda shrugged this time

"Why? you never cared before"

"That's not true" Linda shook her head.

"You haven't asked me once how I feel."

"Alright how do you feel?" Linda asked

"Like I can't breathe, so just back off. Look I'm not ready for this so, I'm just going to go thanks for lunch" Grace got up out of her seat grabbed her bag and left the cafe leaving a stunned Linda still sitting in the cafe.