Sunday, April 28, 2013

Chapter 3- Part 3


An unexplained epidemic of local sick children pours into the hospital, causing chaotic panic among the staff.  Every room is completely occupied but the number of ill children continues to grow.  They’re vomiting and dry heaving unremittingly without any relief.  The awful smells and sounds are foul enough to make me gag my insides out.  But there is no time for weak stomachs.  I run around frantically attending to the ones who are helplessly waiting for assistance.  It brings overwhelming tears to my eyes seeing so many young babies and children crying in pain and discomfort.  The agonizing expressions on their faces are unbearable to witness.  I hate to see anyone cry in pain, especially children.  I want to gather every one of them into my arms and heal them immediately, take their suffering away.  I pick up a feeble infant boy who struggles to give out dim whimpering sounds.  Both of his parents are sobbing.  Their hearts are heavy with concern.  I hug him tightly in my arms and say a silent prayer while holding back my own tears.  “God, please help me cure all these innocent babies.”  I open my eyes, gather my strength and lead them down a congested hallway.
To my astonishment and disbelief, I see Mr. Bradley among a crowd of wailing people with his IV pole kindly assisting a family of three young children.  He generously offers them his private room.  He tenderly kneels down to one of the little girl and wipes her tears.  She grants him an uplifting smile, reaches for his hand and holds onto it.  He receives her gesture with delight.

Why is this arrogant, self-centered man being compassionate?  I’m confused.  My heart is even more confused.  The only thing I’m certain about is I can no longer deny my feelings for him.  Coincidentally at that very moment, he affectionately looks directly into my tearful eyes.  His expression is warm and sympathetic.  He sees right through my hard armor and directly into my heart.  I break our intense gaze and mouth, “Thank you!”  He rewards me with his heart-wrenching smile and playfully salutes me with his right hand. 

I call Amelia and Richard, who are both assigned to the same hospital thirty minutes from here, for reinforcement.  They came as soon as they completed their scheduled shifts.   I’m ecstatic and relieved to see them.  I need all the help I can gather.  I briefly introduce them to Mr. Bradley.  Richard is reserved and cautious when he shakes his hand, while Amelia is her amicable bubbly self.  We divided into six teams and eventually stabilized all the children by late evening.
It has been a long and exhausting evening.  We’re all completely drained and ready to crash.  I want nothing else but to fall into my bed and sleep for the next twenty-four hours.  The idea is pampering but impossible.  I could never afford the luxury of wasting that many hours on sleep.  I’m constantly committed to classes, studying and hospital rotations.  

As we walk around the corner to the main hospital entrance, I spot Mr. Bradley wearing ceil blue hospital scrubs speaking to someone on the phone.  He has a troubled expression on his face.  I jealously wonder who he’s talking to…maybe a girlfriend.  And why am I jealous?  Argh...I'm frustrated with myself.  I wave him over to our direction once he finished his call.  His expression lightens up. 
“Mr. Bradley, do you have a place to stay for the night since you kindly gave up your room?  You’re more than welcome to come back with us.  Even though you’re stable, it wouldn’t hurt to have medical staff at an arm’s reach.” I unexpectedly offer him.  I see both Richard and Amelia’s faces in complete shock. 
“Thank you for your generous offer, Dr. Ly.  I would really appreciate a place for tonight since my housing arrangements are not ready for this evening.”  The arrogant jerk I talked to several hours ago has seemed to disappear and is replaced with this more agreeable charming man. 

“You can stay with me.” Richard hesitantly offers.  I’m not surprise that he volunteers his place.  He must’ve sensed my attraction to Mr. Bradley and wants to keep the distance between us.  I don’t blame Richard for his ill feelings towards him.  I had assured Richard from the beginning that I have no room for romance and now, I’m obviously lusting over another man in front of him.  I have to admit it’s a better option for him to stay with Richard anyways.  I wouldn’t be able to sleep, knowing Mr. Bradley is merely steps away from me.  I don't trust my irrepressible hormones.

He drives off with Richard and I catch a ride with Amelia back to our dormitory.  Amelia questions me relentlessly about Mr. Bradley.  “What is going on between you and this handsome Mr. Bradley?  I've never seen you this animated around a man before.”  Am I that obvious? 
“I don’t know what you’re implying?  I’m just trying to be gracious to a homeless man.” I unconvincingly deny. 
“I’ll drop it for tonight because we are both dog tired, but I will need answers from you tomorrow, alright?”  She narrows her eyes sideways at me.  I nod my head to appease her.

We all arrived at the dormitory at the same time.  The air in the elevator is unbelievably thick as soon as the doors close and seal the four of us in.  I refrain from looking directly at Mr. Bradley but fail to avoid indulging my eyes at his handsome reflections from the stainless steel doors in front of us.  I see Richard’s impassive expression from the reflection as well.  No one opens their mouth, not even to breathe, it seems.  This is by far my longest elevator ride up to the tenth floor.  The doors finally open.  We single file out.  Women first and then the men follow behind.  Mr. Bradley unconsciously places his palm at my lower back to courteously guide me out.  His brief touch sends an ardent yearning sensation throughout my body but I shake it off promptly.  I can’t lose my control in front of everyone, especially Richard.     
“Good night.”  I softly bid him. 
“Good night, Dr. Ly.”  He responds with searching eyes.  I quickly evade them.  I’ve already made it this far.  I can’t fail now.

Richard leads Mr. Bradley in the direction of his room.  He’s not happy about sharing his place or his girl with this man.  I can clearly see it in his sulking eyes.  I steal several more irresistible glimpses of Mr. Handsome Bradley to add to my mental portfolio of him.  Amelia catches me but she’s too tired to wrestle for answers.  I’m sure she will not let me off the hook this easily tomorrow.  I better prepare myself for her many inquisitions.  But the second I enter my room, I plunge into my bed from extreme exhaustion.  I didn’t even have enough energy to dream about Mr. Bradley.  Well...maybe just a little one...

***Pictures are not mine.  They're shared via Pinterest.  The actor/model is NOT affiliated with this book.  The characters are fictional.***

This is the last chapter I will share with all of you.  I hope  that you've enjoyed reading the unedited version and will want to continue reading the remaining story when it becomes available via e-book.  I'm aiming for July 2013.  I will keep you posted via this blog.

Continue following this blog for sexy excerpts from further chapters.  The suspense at the end will make you want to read book 2 ;) 

Thank you for reading and supporting my first writing venture!!!!!

Lan LP 

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Chapter 3- Part 2


I nervously walk towards him…the man I’ve been having illicit dreams about is now staring deeply into my paralyzed eyes with his own enslaving hazel green eyes.  He looks confident, stern and controlled.  His mind seems preoccupied.  I think he’s studying me and determining if I’m professionally capable of managing his care.  Maybe he thinks I’m too young and inexperienced.  I give him one confident smile and avoid his inquiring eyes.  The last thing I want is for him to validate my attraction to him.  My eyes would undoubtedly deceive me. 

He doesn’t embrace me with a smile.  But for some odd reason, this makes him even more incredibly attractive to me, in a distinguished way.  I notice his bountiful undulating dark brown hair is now neatly groomed and his flawless chiseled face is also freshly shaven.  I visually trace the length of his masculine jaw line to his charming boyish one-sided dimple.  God, he’s hot!  I obliviously bite on my thumb nail without thinking.  He follows my finger with his severe eyes.  I’m caught.  I nervously remove it and bite on my lower lip.  I evade his meticulous eyes and focus on his full luscious lips which are pressed firmly together.  Deja-vu thoughts of him licking his lower lips flash through my mind.  I’m reminded of our ambulance ride and how lustful he made me feel then as well as now.  “Cut it out!”  I caution myself.

Mr. Bradley is much taller sitting upright.  I speculate he’s probably over six feet…dominantly towering over me.  He is undeniably one of the sexiest men I've ever seen.  Of course, I already secretly know how tone and perfectly muscular his body is underneath that hospital gown.  Holy shit, I’m losing it again.  What’s the matter with me?  I have to shake these craving thoughts out of my idiotic head.  He needs to see me as a professional medical resident not some ogling admirer.  Unfortunately, the weight of his continuous stare hinders my focus even further.  I encourage myself to quickly peruse his medical chart and gather the information I need to provide a quick assessment.  Mystery man now has a real name.  Carson Bradley, born May 31, 1980…how coincidental, we have the same birth day but he’s ten years my senior. 
“Hello Mr. Bradley, I’m Dr. Ly, your assistant medical resident.  I will be working under the guidance of Dr. Stanford to help accelerate your recovery here at this hospital.  Besides for a few minor bruises and mild dehydration, you are fortunate to have survived your mishap in that frightful storm.  Do you have any questions or concerns for me?”
I inform him in my most authoritative voice.  His confidence in my professional abilities is invaluable to me.  I expect him to look beyond my youth and not equate it with inexperience.  He takes my hand and shakes it firmly as if he’s sealing a business transaction.  His touch stimulates all my senses and confirms my desires for him are indisputably real.  Our hands remain together for longer than a customary handshake so I regretfully remove mine before my uncontrollable hormones expose me. The tingling sensation from our touch still lingers on my hand. 
“First of all, thank you for saving me and for your professional care.  I will be forever in your debt, Dr. Ly.” 
His penetrating eyes command my attention, but I’m afraid to look into them.  They remain fixed on me regardless.  Oh shit, his deep manly voice is as sexy as the rest of him.  I’m utterly doomed. 

“Mr. Bradley, it’s my duty to care for all wounded and sick people.  You don’t owe me anything.”  I pray my confident voice will not disappoint me as I respond. 

“Then will you please tell me how much longer I will be detained here?  I’m a busy man.  It’s imperative for me to leave as soon as possible to handle pressing business matters back home.”  He continues to stare at me with studious eyes.  “I have people waiting for me.  I can’t waste any more time being stuck here.”  His considerate tone is now completely arrogant and demanding.  He transforms into a conceited asshole within minutes. 
Initially, I am taken back by his haughty response and attitude.  However, I’m relieved to see this unattractive side of him.  I was completely accurate about my stereotyping of his kind.  The lustful trance he has over me sizzles out instantly, yielding overflowing steam from my simmering anger.  I have an urgent need to run out of this room and leave him behind as quickly as possible.  I glare at him with my eyes sideways and slightly narrowed. 
“I do not detain anyone here against their will.  As soon as I complete your vitals and if they are satisfactory, I will release you by the end of today.  You can tend to your pressing and personal needs then, Mr. Bradley.”  I reply harshly through gritted teeth. 

He’s stunned from my abrasiveness but also seems amused at the same time.  There’s a visible smirk on his face even though he fails miserably to conceal it.  Does he think this is funny?  I don’t find anything amusing about his arrogance.  I’m fuming with irritation.  I assume he’s unfamiliar with women being this forthright and challenging with him.  He’s probably accustomed to them surrendering to his every beckoning needs and commands.  In other words, kiss his egotistical ass.  I am not that type of woman.  I don’t kiss anyone’s ass.

“Dr. Ly, I didn’t mean to sound ungrateful.  I hope I didn’t offend you.”  There’s remorse in his tone.  I blatantly ignore his apologize.
His beseeching green eyes may be slightly convincing.  But at this point, I don’t give a crap about what he utters out of his mouth and stomp out hastily.  As soon as I’m far enough away from his room and out of his view, I puff out an irascible breath.  I lean my shaken body against the supportive wall behind me in hope of regaining my balance.  “What an arrogant and ungrateful son of a bitch…I can’t believe I was fantasizing about you!”  I angrily scold myself.  This is why I can’t allow any men into my life.  They’re too complicated.  I reclaim my composure and collectedly continue with the rest of my hospital rounds. 


Damn, no woman has ever dared to confront me like that.  I was already taken by her beauty and intelligence but her spit fire and strong will makes her even more irresistible to me.  How can I possibly think clearly with that seductive ruffled expression on her stunning face?  If only she would allow me to take her into my arms and seal my eager lips over hers, she would know how much I desire her.  She has a sexy habit of biting her lower lip when she’s crossed as well as nervous.  Christ, she’s making me hard for her without trying or knowing.  I’m forcing every fiber in my body to fight my attraction for her.  It’s driving me insane that I’m unable to control my own emotions.
I’m tired and bored of willing women telling me what I want to hear.  I never know what’s really going through their minds because they’re in constant fear of how I might react to their honesty.  I crave deep conversations with real opinions and sentiments.  I love her brutal emotional honesty.  It initiates an intense purpose for me to want her, in a determined way.  But what the hell am I saying?  I thought I’ve already convinced myself to leave her alone.  This is why I’m deliberately arrogant and curt with her.  I'm intentionally pushing her away from me with my better judgment even though I don’t want to.  I'm torn, especially after seeing her upset because of me.
I will only end up breaking her heart because I’m incapable of loving anyone.  “Don’t be a selfish bastard!”  I reprimand myself.  “Let her be!  She deserves better.”  But why is my heart triggered by her?  I’m more alive than I’ve ever been in years.  What should I do?  I have to distance myself from her, the sooner the better.  The tough challenge is to somehow secure my thoughts and desires for her until Owen picks me up.  I’m not sure this is possible for me…

      ***The pictures are NOT mine!  They're shared via Pinterest.  The actor/model are NOT affiliated with this fictional story.***

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Chapter 3- Part 1

(Unedited Version-Contents may be inappropriate for readers under 18)

I’m completely spent from my restless night of sleep.  I repose in the comfort of his protective arms utterly sated from our carnal night of lovemaking.  I immediately reminisce about the multiple orgasms we enjoyed together…

 As I fervently lay prone over a decadent down pillow, he leisurely walks his two fingers up the back of my ticklish legs.  I’m wearing nothing but a delicate black lacy thong.  The sensual taps of his fingertips lure dormant cravings deep within my body.  His fingers suddenly stop at my upper inner thighs, purposely coaxing more intense desires for him.  It's effective.  I want and shamelessly beg for more.  He proceeds with wispy feathery kisses along the middle of my lower back.  My body squirms pleasurably underneath him.  He slowly parts my thighs and slides the thin lace material to one side for full access to my velvet lips.  With every slow touch of his fingertips along my sensitive skin, moisture gathers and I desperately yearn for him to take me.  He sensually places his two fingers over my moistened sweet spot and begins a soothing circular massage.  The rhythmic motion sends me almost completely over the edge.  He has an approving expression on his face, watching me fall apart under his control.

It's apparent to him that my body craves more.  He gently rolls me onto my back with the same pillow propping my pelvis up.  He continues his sexual taunting with his skillful tongue as he places his head between my unsteady bent knees.  And at the same time, he also caresses and kneads my breasts with his free hand.  The arousing motion and pressure of his warm tongue and two fingers circling inside me provokes an explosive orgasm.  I moan and pant pleasurably.  He's pleased.
I hear my loud voice moaning over and over again…but now it sounds more like buzzing…oh shit, it’s my damn alarm clock!   I fight hard to open my rebellious eyes.  I don’t want my pleasure to end.  But unfortunately, I have to succumb to reality.  And the harsh reality is discovering that I was having an erotic dream of my mystery man, alone in my bed.
 I'm already struggling to stay focused in my first class as snippets of my vivid and lustful dream dominate my unsettled mind.  Nothing can penetrate my sinful obsession.   I can’t stop seeing his handsome face and imagining his delicious lips and hands all over my body.  Ugh…this will be a dreadfully long day for me.  How can I think about pathology at a time like this?  I’m angry with myself for not being able to concentrate and for allowing this mystery man, who I know absolutely nothing about, to dramatically influence me this way.  “This crazy fixation has to end immediately!” I scold myself.  I can’t allow anything or anyone to interfere with my academic goals. 
After I harshly lecture myself over the importance of regaining control of my raging hormones, I was much more productive in my remaining two classes.  I’m thankful Amelia and Richard did not detect my neurotic state of mind.  How can I explain any of this to them when I don’t have a rational explanation for myself?  I temporarily muffle this foolishness.  The question is how long will I be able to repress it?  I’m hoping to hang on until after our first encounter.

Ouch, I feel an unfamiliar sting in my right arm as I push my body up from a reclined position.  “Where the hell am I?”  I look around to search for any clues or answers.  I am hooked up to an IV pump and wearing a damn hospital gown with no boxers.  My ass is bared to all who enters my room. 

The last thing I remembered was apprehensively jumping out of my private jet in the middle of a severe, blinding, tropical rainstorm. Captain Franco announced that we would have to make an emergency landing on the turbulent water.  I frightfully jumped into the dangerous infinite depths of violent waves.  My body immediately surged remotely away from Owen and the inflated raft.  I yelled out in hope of seizing his attention.  There was no response from any direction.  I was on my own.  Initially, I courageously swam for my life but it was pointless.  There was no way to cut through the darkness of that desolate night.  I might as well have been a helpless blind man in a panther’s den.  Eventually, I gave up my useless swimming and played it smart by reserving my energy.  The crashing waves continue to beat forcibly against me as I drifted for many long torturous hours with the help of my life jacket. 
I was fearful of not being discovered before the unknown depths of the water would take my life.  I thought of Bianca, my fiancĂ©e of one year, who was anxiously waiting for me to wed her on the island of St. Maarten.  Even in the possible final hours of my life, I still had strong reservations about marrying her.  I had wished for love to enter my loveless life hours before this trip.  This wasn’t exactly how I imagine love would reenter my life.  And then there was the thought of losing all my years of cancer research if I was swallowed up by this vast body of water.  This daunting thought was by far more terrifying than dying.  I had to fight to remain alive for the sake of my work.  I had millions of people's lives riding on my survival.
The endless blindness of night finally lifted only to expose to the excruciating heat and scorching sun.  My throat was parched and my lips were painfully chapped with blisters. Though I was completely surrounded by water, I wasn’t able to drink a single salty drop of it.  This was the worst form of torture.  I only survived the horrific night just to suffer the beating heat from above.  I wasn't sure how much longer I would last.  But just when I thought my time here on earth was up, I spotted dry land from a near distance.  I thought I might be hallucinating, but I didn’t care.  I desperately swam towards it with whatever remaining life I had left in me.  I dragged my lifeless body onto the beach and reached out for help, a foot…

A blushing young nurse walks into my room and my recollections are abruptly interrupted.  She timidly introduces herself, barely makes any eye contact and begins assessing my vitals.  I remain compliant to allow her to complete her tasks and then fire my questions at her all at once.  She informs me that I was brought to this hospital by a medical resident who found me on the beach unconscious.  She also mentions the hospital has done everything to keep my case confidential which I am very pleased to hear.  The last thing I need is the damn paparazzi coming here to destroy this hospital’s peacefulness and my personal privacy.  I deal with plenty of their shit back in the states.  I decide to keep my anonymous identity for a while longer and give her just the minimal details she needs to complete her medical charting.  I begin with my name and date of birth, “Carson Bradley, 32, born May 31, 1980.”

I don’t want to be anything but lazy today which is abnormal and uncharacteristic of me.  I only want to bask in the radiant sunbeams shining through the far west window.  My recovering body and mind are uninhibitedly immersed in the warmth and glow of the sun.  It’s therapeutic for me.  My mind is free of any stress or obligations.  I’m almost at the center of my tranquility when careful sounds of docile footsteps enter my room and halt me in my mental track. 

I glance over my right shoulder for a glimpse of my new visitor.  I suddenly feel an unfamiliar tug in my chest as my body hardens into marble under her boundless beautiful presence.  Why is my heart racing so rapidly?  I am instantly mesmerized by the delicate, feminine features of her slender and youthful face.  There’s a mysterious hint of exoticness about her, possibly Asian or Hawaiian.  She has the most captivating and distinctive glimmering light russet brown eyes covered with naturally, dark, thick lashes.   I find myself hypnotized by them. Her fair complexion is slightly kissed by the golden sun in all the desirable places, on the tip of her dainty nose and cheek bones.  Only by sheer will power am I able to keep my distance and not reach out to touch her soft glowing skin.  Her silky, dark, chestnut colored hair is neatly tied back in a single long ponytail which enhances her professional appearance.  I can’t resist imagining how sweet her full rosy lips would taste upon my own and her gorgeous smile…what model wouldn’t kill to have that stunning smile.  I think my mind would forsake me if she would’ve granted me more than just one perfect smile.
She is well above average height.  Her svelte body is hidden under her over-sized professional white lab jacket.  If I have to guess her age, I would say mid-twenties because of her academic level but she’s obviously younger in appearance.  She seems coy and innocent as I continue to steal glimpses of her unblemished beauty.  I have a burning impulse inside me to study her for longer than the few seconds she grants me to gaze into her deep brown eyes.  Everything about her is extraordinary to me.  

I attempt to memorize every remarkable detail about her without detection.   Her hair is parted to the right.  There’s an adorable tiny mole underneath her left eye.  If you blink, you would miss it because it’s unnoticeable, but not for me.  She bites on her thumb nail or lower lip when she’s nervous.  She’s left handed and wears no rings on any of her fingers.  I’m selfishly pleased with her unmarried status.  I'm smiling on the inside while hiding it on the outside.  Shit, I feel embarrassed for losing myself in her presence.  I hope it’s not apparent.  My unexplainable attraction to her is beyond my usual discipline.  This peeves me because I'm normally in charge of every situation in my life.  How is it possible for me to be this intensely drawn to this young woman?  We’ve only met just a few minutes ago and we haven’t uttered a single word to each other.  Why is she distinctive from all the other women?  Is it gratitude I’m feeling for saving my life or is my heart finally telling me to wake up?

I lost Emily, my high school sweetheart, to Hodgkin’s Lymphoma at the tender age of seventeen.  With her suffering and death, she took my heart and I haven’t loved or cared for any woman since then.  I know we were young but the love I had for her was real.  My heart hasn’t felt that way for anyone else until now.  Sure, I’ve been with many beautiful women but at the end of the day, I was left feeling empty and alone.  This is probably why they only lasted a few weeks to several months.  I grew tired of trying to find love when it didn’t exist for me.  It was impossible to replace Emily.
Bianca served as my longest void companion.  I honestly never loved her.  I was coerced and brainwashed by my mother to settle down.  She couldn't handle the idea of me being unhappy and alone for the rest of my life.  She relentlessly worked on me for two years before I finally surrendered to her wishes.  “Please Carson.  I’m not getting any younger.  I want grand-babies.”  She would plead every opportunity she had with me.  I finally caved in a year ago and agreed to marry Bianca to make my mother happy, not me.

It would be narcissistic of me to expect this rare young beauty to give my vacant heart a chance when so many women have hopelessly tried and failed.  How cruel and selfish of me to even consider subjecting her to my loveless world?  I mustn’t allow myself to pursue her.  I would only end up killing her pureness and innocence if I fail to love her…

***Pictures are NOT mine.  They're shared from Pinterest.  The actors/models are not affiliated with my book.  The story is fictional. 

Monday, April 22, 2013

Chapter 2- Second Part

 Chapter 2- Second Part

My first semester has swiftly flown by.  But I can’t say it has been an easy breeze either.  I’ve had my share of headaches and sleepless nights.  I knew the academic demands would be challenging but when long hours of hospital rotations are added to this mad equation, the pressure is multiplied by tenfold.  I pray that I will be able to endure the remaining long years ahead. 
On my non-hospital rotation weekends, I spoil myself with visits to the local botanical gardens or walks along the fine white sandy beaches.  It doesn’t sound too exciting for most people my age but it’s my ordinary way to cope with stress.  While walking the length of a beach one vacant Saturday, I discovered a secluded spot just a few miles away from the dormitory.  I was destined to stumble upon.  This place is hardly or never occupied by vacationers or locals.  It’s my secret retreat for studying or just relaxing my overstressed mind and body.  The area is cleverly hidden by colossal coral-covered rock boulders with sharp rugged surfaces.  Shady palm trees naturally grow in all the right places, allowing the brilliant sunlight to perfectly strike only certain areas.    
After such a crazy-ass week of finals and extended late hours at the hospital, I’m more than ready to visit my secret hide-away.  I pack a small picnic lunch, my iPod and a cozy flannel beach blanket and head out by myself.  I feel somewhat guilty about not sharing this exclusive spot with Amelia and Richard but I figure they can find their own special place.
I neatly lay my blanket over the soft powdery sand to forge a beach bed under two shady palm trees.  No oversized umbrella is needed.  I shuffle through my iPod’s playlist for Relaxation Music and tap Play.  Enya’s angelic voice is undeniably soothing.  I lazily lower my stressful body down and close my over-fatigued eyes.  “Ah… this is the life.”  My arms and legs stretch out freely, enjoying the cool-humid breeze.  I convince myself to take a quick cat nap first and then study for the rest of the day when I’m replenished with new energy. 
My body eagerly rests like it’s been deprived for weeks, maybe months, savoring every precious minute of it.  It doesn’t take long for me to reach REM state.  I’m in a peaceful sleep coma until an alarming sensation of wet fingers lightly grasping my right ankle seizes my attention.  It suddenly kills my brief snooze into relaxation.  My ears are occupied with faint moaning sounds coming from beneath me, not my earphones.  Am I having a hallucinating dream?  The exhaustion combine with the heat has completely overtaken my drained mind, I think to myself.  It seems and feels real but is really real?  I abruptly open my heavy lids to confirm, squinting and blinking against the glaring sunlight until I could focus my burning watery eyes.  Horrific screaming from within me follows without any control.  “Oh my god, oh my god and holy shit!  Who or what the hell is attached to my ankle?”
 There’s an unconscious man lying prone on his abdomen with his right hand attached to my ankle.  I can’t see his face or chest to determine if he’s still breathing or not.  I’m hoping and praying that he’s not dead.  I quickly pull my quivering right leg away from him and hug both my legs tightly against my chest.  My body is defenselessly rocking back and forth.  “God, why me?  Why now?”  My mind runs for its wits but my body remains stationary and dumfounded. 
“Cool it Lily and put yourself together!”  I mentally slap myself, gather my sanity and immediately crawl to his side to assess his condition.  I flip him over onto his back and remove his lifejacket to release his body from its confine.  His face is covered with sand so I gently finger stroke it off his cheeks and forehead.  My heart unexpectedly flutters with desire from the sight of his alluring face.  Where is this coming from?  I shake my head several times to brush off this ridiculous attraction.  I lift my blanket off the ground, shake the sand loose and prop his head up with it.  Then I exert all my might to roll his heavy body into a recovery position and obtain his pulse rate and vital signs.  “Thank Jesus, he’s alive!”  The man is suffering from dehydration.  I quickly call my assigned hospital to send an ambulance over for his rescue. 
I sit by his backside to wait for the paramedics while maintaining a vigil watch over his weaken body.  My heart hasn’t stop hammering since I first encounter this stranger.  It’s crucial for me to regain control of my madness.  This man needs my professional care.  This is what I’m trained to do. 
After thirty minutes or so, the paramedics arrive with their emergency kit.  They lay his frail body on the stretcher and quickly start an IV.  They transport him into the ambulance and insist I drive in the back with them to the hospital.  I’ve never ridden in one before.  The ride is jerky, which is to be expected, due to the horrible road conditions as well as incoming traffic.  Several times I almost fall forward because of hasty stops they make for reckless drivers and crazy pedestrians.  The loud siren continuously blares in my ears…I’ll definitely have this annoying ring in my head for several days to come. 
His sun-chapped lips beg for my attention.  I wipe a moist towel over them, pealing his lips apart.  He responds to it by lightly licking the moisten path with his tongue.  I hear him softly mumble something under his breath but it’s incomprehensible.  Is he trying to tell me something?  Why do I have this lustful desire in my gut as I watch him trace his sensual tongue along his lower lip?  Again, I’m guilty of admiring his lean defined face which is heavily covered with dark bristles.  What am I doing?  I force these forbidden thoughts out of my head and continue to monitor him for signs of progress.
We thoroughly inspect all his pockets for any form of identification.  There is nothing but his initials ‘C.B.’ on his platinum cufflinks that distinguishes him.  His costly designer suit is perfectly tailored to conform to his fine body.  I also notice an expensive gold watch on his left wrist.  One of the ambulance guys makes a repulsive comment about his Rolex watch costing over $75,000.00.  Wow, I can’t imagine anyone crazy enough to spend that much money on a small watch.  He has no wedding band on his ring finger.  And why am I checking for his eligibility status?
Right away, I fabricate a quick personal assessment of him, persuading myself to forget these unexplainable desires.  He’s probably arrogant, self-centered and enjoys an affluent lifestyle.  Everything is catered to him.  He’s not married therefore he has commitment issues.  This incident has perhaps sabotaged his plans of meeting one of his many swimsuit model girlfriends.  He has a different flavor for all his needs.  He never lacks the company of a beautiful woman.  I’m willing to put my money on this fact.      
I have a character flaw of judging people based on their materialistic appearances- similar to those who stereotype people with tattoos.  It’s a terrible trait that I’ve inherited from my mother.  I’m not proud of it.  Many unanswered questions flood my mind about this mysterious man as I sit and stare at his languished body and striking face.  Even though he’s not my type, why am I drawn to him?  Not that I have any guidelines for the perfect type.  I think to myself. 
We finally arrive at the hospital and he’s quickly transferred to a private room.  Since his identity is unknown, the hospital has maintained the highest level of confidentiality for him.  Two eager female nurses begin to remove his dampened clothes, first the jacket, then his vest and dress shirt and finally his pants and boxers.  I catch myself examining his gloriously lean, muscular, naked body in an unprofessional manner as I nervously bite my thumb nail.  I secretly yearn to walk over to his side and trace my fingers along his entire body, not sparing any areas.  He is endowed in both length and girth, I shamefully note. 
I’m disappointed when they quickly dress his distracting ripped, athletic-type body with a unisex hospital gown.  Where is all this lust coming from?  Am I finally experiencing my suppressed teenage hormones?  Seriously, I need a good smack to knock some sense back into me.   I eventually convince myself to smother these crazy, erotic, mental thoughts and resume my role of assistant attending resident.
I walk over to his bed and examine him closely.  He is indeed a fine-looking male specimen.  Stop it!  I place my two fingers on his radial artery and obtain his pulse rate, 55.  I assume he works out from his healthy rate and his perfect muscle tone.  There I go again losing my train of thought.  I quickly release his wrist and step away from his bed.  I think I better let the nurse complete his physical assessment.  I’m not thinking straight.  For reasons I can’t understand, this man is slowly breaking down my invincible barrier I’ve worked years to build and reinforce.
Dr. Stanford, the lead physician, orders a comprehensive lab workup for my mystery man after the nurse reported her evaluation.   He responds well with continuous IV fluids.  I decide to keep my distance from him, only observing his condition from his medical chart.  I would hate for Dr. Stanford to witness my unprofessional gawking of our patient.  Besides, I’m not quite ready to face him when he becomes conscious. 
I leave specific orders with the nursing staff.  He is to remain rested in bed and to personally call me if there are any notable changes.  This isn’t standard practice, of course.  But then I’ve never been irrational attracted to any patient or man before.  I’m usually in a hurry to leave the hospital but not this evening.  I long to be near C.B., a nickname I gave this mystery man, obviously from a distance.  But unfortunately, other obligations are waiting for me back at school.  I have three lecture classes to attend, starting early tomorrow morning.  “School must come first.”  I remind myself.
I’ll attend my classes and swing by tomorrow afternoon to visit him.  This will give me an entire day to prepare myself for our first face to face encounter.  I have to be confident and professional.  I cannot allow him to see my weakness for him.  I give myself a 'go team Lily' pep talk.  
And now, the tough challenge is to get through tonight and tomorrow…

***Pictures are shared from Pinterest***

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Chapter 2 of "Forever-Beginning" Part 1

Chapter 2

            We finally arrived at our destination.  Richard’s GPS system declares.  The opulent building appears to be an old historical castle transformed into an aristocratic medical school.  It’s secretly hidden away, high on a cliff, overgrown with luscious tropical foliage, vines and trees.  The entire perimeter is guarded with a massive wrought iron and stone fence while the entrance is safely secured by two attendants in official red uniforms.  The grounds are beautifully maintained with many distinctive flowering plants and hand sculpted boxwood bushes.  A colossal water fountain with three ornate mermaid statues takes center stage in front of the school.  This is to be my home for the next five incredible years…I can’t imagine my life getting much better than this!
          I’m drawn to the magical fountain.  I stroll up to its’ stone rim and set my bottom down.  I place my hand in the clear cool water and wade it back and forth.  I have a strong impulse to make a self-indulgent wish.  I think I have a few coins in my side pocket.  Here they are.  I dig them out, chant “I wish for success and happy endings.” and toss them in.  Richard taps my right shoulder from behind and my reverie comes to a halt.  He acquainted himself with several other new medical students and must have discovered the location of my dormitory. 
“Lillian, we’ll be cohabitating the same building!” is what he excitedly tells me.  “In fact, our rooms are just down the hall from each other.”
“That’s great Richard!”  I pretend to also be thrilled.  But this is far from the truth.  School hasn’t commenced and I’m already plagued with a handsome male diversion on my hands.  This accelerated medical program has a severe reputation for its intensity.  I can’t allow myself to get off track before I even start.  My entire future depends on how well I do here.
          Richard leads the way to our dormitory.  I follow behind his trail of two large luggage.  He’s well equipped in comparison to my single medium size suitcase.  I’m probably the most minimalistic girl in the world.  Even with his hands full, Richard considerately insists on helping me with mine.
          “I can get that for you.  I’ll throw yours on top of mine.” 
I teasingly tell him, “This little mute can handle her own shit, thank you very much!” 
I’ve learned to manage myself efficiently ever since I was a young toddler.  My mother worked long hours to make ends meet so I adapted independently.  I never ask for any help unless I absolutely needed it.
“I get it, Miss Independent.”  He grins.    “Will you meet me for dinner then?” he inquires.
          “Um…sure.”  I can’t seem to discourage this persistent man.  I hesitantly agree to dinner.  This will give me an opportunity to explain to him why school is my only priority for now. 
We push all of our luggage into the elevator and ride it up to the 10th floor.  I wonder what the weight limit is for this car.  My fear of height is getting the best of me.  My palms are sweaty.  I’m hoping the elevator will not drop us.  The doors open just in the nick of time before I go into full-blown panic attack.  We haul our suitcases out and head down the hallway in opposite directions.  I solely drag mine to room# 1008. 
 The door to my dorm room opens before I’m able to insert my card into the key slot.  I see a pair of arms reaching out to me, offering a warm welcoming bear hug.  And then I see the rest of her.  She energetically introduces herself with an enthusiastic high-pitched voice.  
“Hi, I’m Amelia McFarland from London, England, your new roomie!” 
“Nice to meet you, I’m Lillian Ly from the U.S.”  I reply with only a quarter of her energy level. 
The Brit coincidences I have encountered within one day are uncanny.  She has the most beautiful shade of scarlet red, silky straight hair that flows freely pass her shoulder blades.  She stands a few inches shorter than me with a bust line that both men and women can really appreciate.  Her skin is fair with strawberry freckles on the bridge of her nose and along her high cheek bones.  I catch myself coveting her dreamy greenish brown eyes.  Amelia’s friendly personality makes her approachable.  She’s laidback and low maintenance.  I couldn’t have asked for a better roommate choice.
We settle into our separate sides of the room.  There are two overstuffed upholstered chairs with their backs to each other in the middle of the room and two antiquish dark-hardwood desks by a beautiful stained glass window.  The full size beds are equipped with fancy vivid colored bedding.  It’s delightful to have a nicely decorated college dormitory room.  I pinch myself to make sure this isn’t some fantasy dream I’m having.  Everything I’ve encountered about this place has been surreal.  I let my listless body sink deep into my super comfy new bed and exhale an appreciative breath.   

I unpack my belongings, and neatly place them in my personal closet.  There’s plenty of room left over since I didn’t pack a whole heck of a lot of things.  I set a graduation picture of me with my mother and two best friends on top of my desk.  I also pull out my lucky fortune and lay it next to the frame.  Now I think I’m ready to call this place home.
Who could possibly be knocking on our door?  Amelia jumps off her bed and clumsily stumbles over her feet to open it.  Richard is standing at the doorway entrance looking particularly charming in dark slacks and a light ivory linen shirt.   He holds a fancy bottle of champagne in his left hand.  Perspiration drips along the sides of it, indicating that it has been properly chilled and ready for drinking. 
“May I come in ladies?  I have a welcoming gift to christen your dorm room.”  He leans his broad shoulder against the wooden doorframe.  He’s a tall lengthy man.  Both Amelia and I are appreciating the same handsome view from different angles.   
Amelia bashfully smiles and turns a magnificent shade of cerise blush while walking him into our room.  He hands me the bottle and it’s chilled, just as I speculated. 
“I have a special place in mind to take you for dinner tonight.”
  Oh holy crap, he hasn’t forgotten my dinner acceptance.  I quickly include Amelia to help ease the pressure of having dinner alone with him. 
“Amelia, wouldn’t you love to join us for dinner at Richard’s special place?” I hopefully ask, giving her pleading eyes. 
“I wish I could but I have a farewell dinner date with my parents.”  Amelia seems sincerely disappointed that she’s unable to come with us, but Richard is rather relieved instead.  He has a triumphant smile on his face. 
Richard escorts me to an extravagant restaurant targeted for the upper class tourists, of course.  I look around this elaborate establishment and find myself extremely underdressed and completely out of place.  Most of the women are wearing elegant evening gowns.  And I’m simply adorned in a black cotton dress, the only one that accompanied me to this island. 
“Richard, why didn’t you tell me I needed to wear something fancier?”  It wouldn’t have made any difference, I guess.  I have nothing fancier than what I’m already wearing.
  “You look absolutely stunning.  It’s the person, not the dress that matters to me.”  How nice of him to pay me this sweet compliment.  But unfortunately, I still feel like an odd piece that doesn’t fit into this perfect puzzle. 
We sit outside on the terrace with a remarkable view of the tranquil cerulean water.  The waves are entrancing.  My eyes are locked in a wistful daze.  I soak in the most amazing sunset full of warm cinnamon gold and vermilion jewel tones.   The unpleasant humidity is still present but there’s a calm, constant, cool breeze that balances the evening’s atmosphere.  The food is a perfect blend of Caribbean and Mediterranean influence.  My taste buds fondly relish the palatable infusion.  An aromatic sweet crisp wine perfectly complements our meals.  I’m careful to take only a few mini sips.  I’m not much of a drinker…a total light weight is what I am…so it doesn’t take much to influence me.  
I have to admit, I am enjoying it all very much…maybe too much.  The ambience is truly romantic and my company isn’t Mr. Average Joe.  He’s charismatic and fetching.  It would be fairly easy to get lost in the moment.  But not for me…I’m too determined to allow myself to stray.  I mentally caution myself to keep things simple between us.  He playfully reaches for my wrist and adjusts my bracelet so the smooth pink lava stones are facing upward.
“I see you’re still wearing my priceless bracelet.  I’m honored.”  He acknowledges with delight as he tenderly brings my hand up to his warm soft lips.  The hairs on my body rise from the sensation of our intimate contact.  I’ve never been this close to a man before.  Hayden doesn’t count because we were just immature teenagers. 
“It’s one of the few pieces of jewelry I own.  I appreciate the caring gesture it represents.”  I openly disclose my feelings with him.    
Slowly, I retrieve my hand and considerately thank him for a wonderful dinner.  “Richard, I appreciate your sincere friendship but this is all I can commit to at this point in my life.  School has always been my first priority.  This will not change until I become a physician.  I know you can understand where I’m coming from.  I see you as a charitable and kindhearted man.  I personally witnessed it today.  I hope I don’t hurt your feelings in any way.”  I regretfully tell him.  
“I do understand.  And this is why you’re unique from all the rest.  Your heart is pure and generous.”  He sweetly responds.
I commend him for handling my offer graciously, not pushing me further and creating uneasiness between us.  We conclude the evening sharing more personal stories and getting to know each other as friends over coffee and dessert.  The awkwardness slowly fades. 
Richard has the same passion as his mother and me.  He wants to use his medical degree to aid those who are less fortunate.  His mother had a deprived beginning.  Her parents struggled in the projects to raise five kids.  They had no health insurance or extra money for anything.  She pushed herself to succeed in school and swore she would help people like herself whenever and wherever she could.  Richard and his siblings were taught to be humble by accompanying her on missionary trips to foreign countries like Africa and Asia.  He was forced to witness poor and sick people begging for food and sleeping on pitiable streets. 
“I’ve been instilled by my mother to never take anything we’ve been blessed with for granted.  ‘We should share our fortune with the less fortunate.’  She constantly reminds me and my siblings.”  He speaks respectfully of his mother.  I can see it in his proud piercing blue eyes.
“Your mother sounds like an amazing woman.  I would love to meet her one day.”  Knowing this personal side of Richard makes me want to become closer friends with him.
“She is.  Your personality reminds me a lot of her.  I’m sure she would love you at first sight.”  He pays me one last sweet compliment… 

***Picture is shared from Pinterest***

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Chapter 1- Final Pages

  My intuition tells me that Richard would like to become more than just airplane buddies.  His eyes secretly study me.  I have this shy desire to pull my sweatshirt hood over my head and hide.  This is my downfall.   I have a one-track mind with a single goal that doesn’t involve boyfriends or complicated relationships.  I’m oddly build this way.  Why can’t I be a typical, hormonal, twenty-two year old, young
woman?  He’s incredibly attractive, tall, and lean with thick, wavy blond hair and the deepest sapphire-blue eyes.  His face is lightly dusted with dark facial hair, along his jawline and around his proportional smooth lips.  His sexy smile can stimulate a heart attack at first sight.
 I attentively listen to him as he elaborate on where he’s from and how he became interested in medicine.  He supposedly grew up in Manhattan but went to a private boarding school in Essex, England for most of his childhood school years.  This explains why he has a hint of Brit when he speaks.  The accent is an added bonus to his hotness, especially for me.  I love foreign accents.  He has two younger siblings who are currently at the same private school in Essex.  He loves soccer and was a polo team captain in both high school and college. His father is chief director of cardiovascular surgery at Debakery’s Heart Healing Center and his mother is an OBGYN who volunteers much of her time at a neighborhood free health clinic. 
His resume for eligible bachelor is immaculate.  And yet, I only have the tiniest inkling of desire for this perfect man.  “What is seriously wrong with me?”  I question myself with disbelief.  As soon as he completes his condensed autobiography, he anxiously waits for me to reciprocate, but all I offer him is, “I’m Lillian M. Ly and I am also a first year medical student.”  I see slight disappointment in his seductive blue eyes.  “You are here to become a doctor!” I remind myself and turn towards the window.  I seal my tired bloodshot eyes and end my brief introduction with Mr. Stevens.
I must have fallen into a deep and desperately needed sleep because the pilot’s final announcement wakes me up. “We will be landing into Henry E. Rholsen Airport in approximately fifteen minutes.”  I can’t grasp the realization that I am really here on this island.  Saint Croix is one of the U.S. Virgin Islands, whose economy is heavily based on tourism.  The island boasts many beautiful resorts with acres of breath-taking beaches and all the amenities of every vacationer’s dreams.  Unfortunately, I will not be one of those lucky vacationers soaking up the warm Caribbean sun and enjoying all the fine five-star dining.  Instead, I will be studying and laboring many long hours at the local hospitals.
 I grab my black SwissGear backpack from the overhead compartment.  Richard chivalrously directs me in front of him with his free hand.  As we exit the aircraft, he courteously insists that I ride with him to the dormitory.
“I don’t think it’s safe for a pretty young lady to use local bus transportation in uncharted territory.  My parents have prearranged for a vehicle to be waiting here for me.” 
“Thank you for being unnecessarily considerate when you hardly even know me.”  I’m sure I would be fine riding the local bus but why chance it?
“It’s no big deal.  We’re both heading to the same place.” 
The minute we step outside the confines of the cool aircraft, the heat and humidity unexpectedly assaults our bodies.  Sweat droplets slowly form and increase in number as I frustratingly wipe them off with my sleeves.  I urgently peel away my sweatshirt, hoping it might decrease my body temperature but it’s pointless.  This heat is nothing like I’ve experienced back home.  It will take some adjusting to embrace this new tropical climate.    
“There he is!  I see a man dressed in a dark navy suite with ‘Stevens’ written on a sign.”  Richard points out and waves his hand for the man to acknowledge us. 
Thank god he spots him quickly.  We gladly make our way towards his driver as I continue to dab new perspiration off my forehead.  My maroon and white I.U. sweatshirt now serves a different purpose.  Richard attentively offers to take my backpack for me but I graciously decline.  I’m Miss Independent, not too keen on being catered to.   
“Hello Mr. Stevens.  Welcome to St. Croix.  I’m Benton.”  He politely greets Richard and offers him a welcoming handshake.  
“Thank you for your promptness, Benton.”    
Our larger luggages are taken to another vehicle.  The man guides us to a gleaming silver BMW Z5 and bestows Richard a key fob for his new ride.
“Your parents have taken care of everything.  All you need to do is enjoy this fabulous car.  Feel free to call me for any other needs, Mr. Stevens.  I live conveniently close to your school.”  He beams us both with a friendly smile.
“Thanks for the offer, Benton.  I will keep you in mind.” 
The sight of his expensive sports car instantly alters my mood.  I blame my mother’s unhappiness on other people’s greed for capital gain.  Her father and husband both betrayed her for money.  Therefore, excessive wealth has become a sensitive issue for me.  I equate abundant fortune with misery.
Richard saunters around to the passenger side to open and close the door for me.  The engine purrs up smoothly. We both welcome the refreshing cool air from the car’s vent as it blows life back into our dehydrated bodies.  Our seatbelts are buckled and Richard’s deep, sexy, British accented voice activates the GPS with our destination.  We’ll be there in about fifty-five minutes according to the navigation calculation.
Richard’s eyes remain cautiously focused on the dangerously winding road.  Occasionally, he’d sneak a glance here and there over at me.  I pretend not to notice and remain reserved.  I am mesmerized by the scenic views of long stretches of aqua blue water and pristine white sandy beaches.  I stare out into the distant horizon and see beautiful yachts and even several titanic cruise ships.  The land is painted with lush tropical green plants full of vibrant colorful blooms.  I welcome the smell of saltiness from the water combined with moist humid air.  This kind of luxury is novel and extremely captivating to me.  I come from a modest family that has no opportunities for vacations to beautiful paradises like this. 
The breathtaking ocean views gradually disappear as we drive deeper into an impoverished and underprivileged part of the town.  The lush vegetation land is now replaced with dry desert and cactus plants.  I’m speechless.  The homes are modest and the people are meekly dressed.  I see little children running around in tattered sandals in the streets with filthy animals.   They appear content even with so little.  People migrate to our car with handmade trinkets and fruits, pleading us to buy from them.  It makes me humble and blessed to have what I have after witnessing this.  Richard buys a handful of dainty bracelets with pink, polished, lava stones from several of the vendors.  He also gives a few small bills to the surrounding children.  I had misjudged him altogether.  He’s generous and kind-hearted, not typical of his kind.  I stow my unbending facade and share a rare vulnerable side of me with him.
 “Richard, this is why I want to become a physician.  I want to care for sick people who can’t afford medical help.  Everyone deserves to be healthy.”  
Completely caught off guard from my openness, he turns to face me and intently looks into my eyes.  “Those who know much speak little and those who bullshit all the time knows little.  It’s my version of an old Chinese Proverbs.”  He grins and clasps the newly bought bracelet around my wrist.  “A simple bracelet for an intricate lady.”  He winks his right eye at me along with that killer smile that exposes his dazzling white teeth.  My face is probably a shade shy of being deep crimson.  I feel the unnerving tension build around my shoulders and neck from blushing.  I bashfully turn away from him to face the window and secretly smile to myself while twirling my new bracelet around my wrist.
          Once again, we continue our drive in serene silence passing more beautiful views of the blue ocean water and lush green tropical trees.  Richard is preoccupied in his own world while I mindlessly take in my new surroundings.  The radio is softly playing in the background while he lightly drums his fingers and bops his head to the rhythm.  It’s hardly audible until the song, ‘Don’t Worry, Be Happy,’ captures our attention.  We both hum simultaneously. 
“Bobby Mcferrin fan are you?”  I ask him with a quirky smile. 
“Who doesn’t love this mindless song?  It makes everyone happy.” 
“So true.”  I nod my head. 
He starts to sing the song’s catchy lyrics in a sexy reggae/British accent.  I surprise him by joining in.  We laugh and giggle uncontrollably as we insert our own lyrics to the song about medical school.  It seems silly and immature but for a brief moment, I permit myself to be carefree and youthful.  I’m having a good time and I love it.  The remaining trip passes quickly once we’re able to speak openly and the rigid barrier is broken down.  And so we begin our new found friendship with a trivial song…

***Pictures are shared from Pinterest***