“Dr. Cullen, Dr. VanDuzor needs you in his office,” said one of the nurses.
“Thanks,” Edward smiled, finalizing his notation and heading to his mentor’s office. Knocking on the door, he poked his head inside. “You needed me?”
“Yes, come in! Come in,” Dr. VanDuzor smiled. Edward sat down, stuffing his stethoscope into his pocket. “As you know, you’re almost done with your residency. You’ve been one of the best young doctors we’d had in a long time.”
“Thank you,” Edward blushed. “It’s been such a joy and challenge working here.”
“Well, earlier this year, you’d demonstrated grace under fire with your care with Seth Stanley. We’d like to honor you for your poise and dedication to this young man. There’s a benefit in late June where we want to honor you and several other staff members,” Dr. VanDuzor said, handing him a thick envelope. “This is an invitation for you and your family. I’m assuming that it’ll be you and your parents?”
“Plus, my girlfriend,” Edward said.
“You’re dating someone? This is great,” Dr. VanDuzor beamed. “Is she local?”
“She’s moving back to Tampa. She just accepted a position at University of Tampa to work in their library and teach several classes,” Edward breathed. “We reconnected after our ten-year high school reunion.”
“That’s wonderful,” Dr. VanDuzor said. “I married my high school sweetheart and she’s my best friend.”
“Mine was the one that got away,” Edward chuckled. “But, we’re happy and making it work.”
“Excellent. Are you taking your girlfriend on vacation with you and your children?”
“Yes, I am,” Edward said. “I finalized the plans earlier this week.” His pager went off and he pulled it out. “I’m sorry, sir. But, there was car accident and I’m needed in the emergency department.”
“Before you go, I know you wanted to be a part of a pediatric practice. One of my partners is retiring early. He was diagnosed Parkinson’s disease. He’s looking to leave the practice,” Dr. VanDuzor said, handing Edward a packet. “This is portion of the practice and how much he is wanting to sell it. Consider it. I know that you just bought a home and you’re going to be working as a fellow, but I’d love to have you in my practice. You’d have privileges in this hospital and would be an asset.”
“Thank you, sir,” Edward said, clutching the file to his chest.
“Please. If we’re going to be partners, call me Elliott,” Dr. VanDuzor chuckled. Edward’s pager went off again. “Go. We’ll chat once you get back from your vacation and congratulations, Dr. Cullen.” Edward shook his hand, darting to the emergency department, dropping the file into his locker.