Excerpt from the WIP Sequel to You Belong To Me
Still posting excerpts, so I’ve chosen to post a sneak peek at my current WIP, the sequel to You Belong To Me. Nathan Taylor has just return from several years in Africa as a member of a traveling physicians group and has just concluded an interview with Elizabeth, who is now the Director of a Women’s Health Clinic that she founded after her stint in rehab (see this backstory in You Belong To Me.)
Dr. Nathan Taylor ducked into the men’s room off the lobby of the Women’s Center. As soon as the door closed behind him he slumped against the wall and waited for the dizziness to pass. When he could open his eyes without the room spinning in front of him he took the two steps to the sink and splashed cold water on his face.
Damn it! He was going to beat this. He’d suffered for months now trying to shake this thing. The stress of the interview – something he could certainly handle under normal circumstances – had taken a toll on his system. He reached into his coat pocket and pulled out the bottle of pills he carried with him, emptied two into his trembling hand and swallowed them down without any water.
Reaching for a paper towel to wipe the perspiration from the back of his neck, he wondered if he was fit for this job. He hadn’t worked since he got back from Africa and it was killing him to be idle. But he wouldn’t endanger a patient, either.
After a few minutes, his hands stopped shaking and the strength returned to his legs. He smoothed down his hair and emerged in the lobby just as Elizabeth and Claire were walking out the front door. He stood watching them as they strode down the front walk, thankful for his timing. When they had disappeared in Elizabeth’s car – a brand new Mercedes, he noted – he left the building and headed home.
His apartment had the sparse look of a demo model. There was furniture, but he’d lived in refugee camps for so long he’d barely accumulated anything personal except his collection of photographs of the people he had met – and loved – in those far away countries.
Nathan walked straight to his bedroom, stripped, showered and fell into bed. It was only six o’clock, but sleep came to him easily.
When he awoke, the sun was shining in the window and a glance at the bedside clock told him he’d slept for fourteen hours. No nightmares. No dreams at all that he could remember.
Kicking off the blankets, he sat up on the side of the bed and waited for the dizziness, but it didn’t come. He felt pretty good this morning. Fourteen hours of sleep will do that.
He stood and looked around the room for a pair of jeans. The clothes he’d worn to the interview were strewn across the straight-back chair in the corner.
The interview. He was going to practice medicine again. His chest expanded and he sensed a bit of his pride returning after a long hibernation. He had been nervous about the interview – and more so when he met Elizabeth. That woman with the dark, spiky hair and stormy gray eyes had held his whole future in her hands. But it had gone better than he anticipated.
He moved into the kitchen and started a pot of coffee. When he opened the front door to pick up the morning paper from the stoop, the air smelled sweet and fresh. He hadn’t paid attention to the rest of the world while he’d been so sick, and now it was as though the coming spring was a harbinger of his own renewal.
With a fresh cup of coffee in hand, he sat on the couch with the paper, but he didn’t even look at it. In a little more than a week he would start at the clinic and he needed to get all of his strength back – to wean himself from the pills and to get his body clock regulated to a normal work day.
While he rested he could start making a list of the things the clinic would need. He would start with the basics, then he’d build from there. It would be good to get back to medicine again, back to having some purpose in his life. Being with other people who shared his ideals would be a welcome change from the isolation he’d felt since he’d been back in the States. An ache bloomed in his chest as he remembered the last person that had shared his goals.