Chapter 2

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The following morning Connie dragged herself from the confines of her bed beginning to get herself ready for work. It was the one place she didn't have to think about anything else, she could just be the brilliant surgeon they all knew she was.

As she sat in her car outside the hospital she lowered her eyes to her hands where she held her keys. Turning over the image that hung in a key ring she gritted her teeth before removing herself from the car. Locking the car she wandered slowly across the car park with her keys still in her grasp. As she walked she pulled the key ring from the chain throwing into the bin as she passed, entering the hospital with her head high.

Entering the ward, the sound of her heels reverberated around the corridors warning everyone of her arrival. "Morning Mrs Beauchamp." Looking to the desk she refused to acknowledge the staff there before pushing the door to her office open, disappearing inside. "Happy today I see..." "A normal shift then?"

Connie placed her bag on top of her desk as she looked around to Elliot's desk which was coated with paperwork. With a huff she shrugged out of her coat hanging it up before sitting down at the desk.

While she waited for the computer to power up, she picked up her phone moving through the messages she had already received that morning. There was nothing she was interested in responding to, just things she wanted to ignore forever.

Dropping the phone back down onto the desk, she held onto the table pulling her chair forward as she logged onto the computer. A knock at the door dragged her eyes up as Sam looked around the door. Letting her eyes fall again she spoke harshly. "What is it Mr Strachan?" "I just thought I'd check everything was okay, since last night. You didn't seem in the best of moods."

Swallowing past the lump that had risen in her throat, she ignored the urge to sit down with him and explain everything. "I suggest you return to work and do what you're paid for..." Pushing his tongue into his cheek he remained in the office watching her. "Well what are you waiting for?" Connie glared up at him as he rolled his eyes turning to walk out.

She released a breath almost instantly as the door closed. Leaning forwards carefully she rest her head in her hands. The door was abruptly pushed open as Elliot came stumbling inside with his arms full of folders. Connie's head snapped up to see him, getting up to help him before he dropped it all.

"Connie. I wasn't aware you were in this morning. Thank you." "Well it's a good thing I am or else you'd be making a mess of my department." He nodded without talking as she crossed the room to put what she'd taken from him on his already messy desk. "So why are you here this morning?"

Walking back to her desk she sat down, resuming her position from before. "There's paperwork to be finished and a department to run, I hardly have the time to be sitting around outside of this office." "And there were no other plans you were supposed to have today?" Connie glanced away from her computer briefly before looking back to it again. "No. And if there were, then there isn't anymore."

Elliot nodded accepting that as the end of the conversation knowing better than to push her. "Did I see Sam in here before I came in?" "Mr Strachan was trying to do anything except his job." He opened his mouth to speak before hastily stopping, deciding to nod and simply get on with the piles of work stacked on the desk.

As silence ensued over the office, the only sound being the typing or turning of pages, the pair got on with the long list of things they had to do. After a few hours had passed, Connie found herself no longer able to concentrate solidly on the paperwork which didn't go unnoticed by Elliot.

Checking the time he looked to Connie who was flicking through notes on her desk. "I have a surgery in half an hour, do you think you'll be able to take over on it for me?" She lifted her eyes to meet with his momentarily before she focused on the notes again. "I don't need you taking some kind of pity on me because I seem distracted to you-" "Of course not. I have more than enough work surrounding me here that's been sitting her for too many weeks unfinished... Could you do the surgery in my place while I get through this?"

Pushing her tongue into her cheek she glanced at the time before looking up. "What is it?" "Routine. Patient has already been informed of everything, they'd just need to know you were stepping in for me." Connie looked to her desk to see her phone ringing with a number she really didn't want to see. Ending the call she noticed a message appear immediately after. Con I'm in this afternoon, can we talk? Please.

Standing up she walked to Elliot's desk holding a hand out. "Patient file?" He handed it over watching her leave the office with a smirk on his face. Leaning back in his chair he looked to the side before moving to pick up one of the doughnuts beside him.

Connie strolled the department moving through the details of the patient as someone fell into step with her. "Is Professor Hope still in his office?" "Yes. Why didn't you just go and check for yourself instead of bothering me?" He shrugged continuing to walk along beside her until they stopped around the desks on the ward. "Thought I'd save myself the journey."

She looked up to the board of patients on the wall noting who was down to assist with the days surgeries. "Is this patients surgery underway?" "No it's postponed until this afternoon. Why?" Turning around Connie grabbed the patient file Elliot had handed her earlier. "Read up. Get changed. Be in theatre in 15 minutes." "Who was meant to be scrubbing in?"

Connie turned back looking to him as he frowned beginning to glance at the file. "Mr Douglas. He's not here, you are. He's out, you're in. Any further questions or will you let me do my job now?" Sam had guessed at who would have been assisting her from the way she had looked at the board. Saying nothing else he disappeared to scrub in while Connie did the same.

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