Three weeks pa.s.sed, and Suhyuk saw the patients at Daehan Hospital as usual.
Whenever he had a call from the operating room, he wore surgical globes.
He was wanted not only at the cardiothoracic surgery department but at other clinical departments such as internal medicine, Ob/Gyn, urology, etc.
The patients there cried out for Suhyuk.
Making the rounds of patients absent-mindedly, he was having a late lunch.
At that moment his phone buzzed.
“Dr. Lee, this is a pediatrics department. A patient’s guardian insists on receiving your treatment.”
“What’s her name?”
“Got it. Let me come in a moment!”
After the call he began eating hurriedly.
He didn’t touch the side dishes, only having soup.
Quickening his pace, he tied up his gown before an elevator.
When he got off the elevator, he saw a woman holding her child.
Looking at them standing close to his clinic office, they were obviously the patient and the guardian that the pediatrics office called him about.
Approaching them, Suhyuk opened his mouth with a smile,
“You must be Lee Narae’s guardian, right?”
“Oh,are you Dr. Lee Suhyuk?”
He then looked at the child holding her mother’s hand, sayng
“How cute! What pain brought you here?”
She opened her mouth quickly, “She swallowed a iron marble.”
Nodding his head, he stroked her head softly, saying
“Please come on in.”
When she and her guardian sat, the nurse came in, saying
“I sent you her CT on the computer.”
After the nurse went out, Suhyuk told the guardian after turning on the PC monitor,
“I saw a patient who swallowed fragments of a razor.”
The guardian was stunned.
What would have happened to the patient’s organs? Broken into pieces?
Contrary to her nervous look, Suhyuk fixed his eyes at the monitor with a relaxed smile.
“She was discharged with no damage at all. The organs in our body are not that weak as we think.”
She turned her head and looked at her daughter.
She was not aware of what she had eaten yesterday. She said in the morning all of a sudden,
“Mom, I swallowed a marble.”
She had no choice but to take her to the hospital urgently.
“If you take a look at this…” said Suhyuk, turning the monitor toward her.
“Obviously it looked like a marble. Fortunately it reached to the intestine. I feel it will come out of her body without any trouble.”
“Are you serious, doctor?”
“Yes, she doesn’t need any medicine or a shot.”
The girl’s face, who was wearing a crying expression, now brightened.
“Next time you eat something like that, let me follow you and give you a shot, okay?”
“No, no! I won’t swallow it again.”
Suhyuk was heading to Prof. Han Myungjin’s office.
Knock, knock, knock.
“Come on in”
When he went it, Han greeted him with a smile.
“So, were you busy again today?”
Suhyuk was the busiest doctor at Daehan Hospital these days.
And the whole medical staff knew it.
“A bit, sir.”
A fragrant coffee smell filled the office. The cars seen through the window let an usually long trail of light behind today.
Offering him coffee, Han took a seat, saying
“So, you made the decision?”
Han nodded his head.
Though he wanted to stay with Suhyuk and watch him grow, there was no way of stopping him.
Suhyuk took out a white envelope from his pocket and put it on the table politely.
Han said with a bitter smile,
“Wasn’t the hospital director opposed to your resignation?”
“He said just he could not take it.”
Han nodded his head again faintly.
Even if I were in the director’s shoes, I would have done the same thing, discouraging him from resigning. But I’m a doctor.
“Let me convey it to the director on your behalf,” said Han.
“Thank you, sir.”
Taking a sip of coffee, he rose from the seat in no time.
“I’d like to take my leave then.”
“Sure, sure. Have a good rest. By the way, How about me sending you an orchid?”
Suhyuk smiled, saying “Please do come empty-handed. Bye for now, sir”
Bowing to him deeply Suhyuk went out of the office.
Han looked at the door through which Suhyuk just went out.
Wrinkles on his eyelids, Han smiled, murmuring,
“Now you have full wings to fly bravely”
Not hearing Han’s murmuring, Suhyuk headed to the VIP room.
The name plate placed on the door of the patient’s room.
Suhyuk cautiously opened the door and went in.
It was bright inside with the lights on. There was n.o.body, and Prof. Jung lay in bed.
The humidifier on the side was puffing out while fog, and the professor’s oxygen respirator formed steam inside.
“How are you, professor?”
Naturally there was no reply from him.
Suhyuk sat on the sofa beside him.
“Professor, I’ve got some question. Are you really the person that came up in my dream? If so, please open your eyes like miracle and say something like you did in my dream.”
Suhyuk only heard the faint puffing sound from the humidifier.
He then rose from the seat and held the back of his hands softly.
The second hand of the clock was pointing at 11pm.
“I’ll see you again, professor.”
Suhyuk went out the room cautiously, and headed to his original lodging.
Though it could accommodate only two persons, there was n.o.body when he visited.
For Daehan Hospital provided Suhyuk with an exclusive lodging.
Suhyuk rejected the hospital’s offer to give him a separate office there.
He was not a professor yet.
Sitting on the mattress and touching it, Suhyuk soon lay on the bed after turning off the light.
It was quiet. Only ticking sound of the watch and Suhyuk’s breathing sound were heard.
He fell to sleep like that before he knew it.
“Did you come?”
Suhyuk nodded his head calmly.
A world of white.
A man walking toward him from the far distance.
The moment Suhyuk felt it was only a dream, he greeted the man gladly.
When the man in a surgical gown approached, he cast a long shadow that reached the tiptoes of his feet.
Looking at his eyelids, Suhyuk opened his mouth.
It was strange, though. Though he said, he could not have his voice heard.
‘Prof. Jung Jisuk. Are you him, sir?’
That moment the man who watched Suhyuk’s lips made a good smile.
“Are you leaving now? You’ve made a great sacrifice here. But you’re now starting a new journey, right?”
At his remarks, Suhyuk shook his head and said,
‘I just start a journey chasing my dream.’
As if he was proud of Suhyuk, the man nodded his head slowly.
‘By the way, Prof. Jung Jisuk…’
Suhyuk could not think any more because something surprising was happening before his eyes.
A white fog was coming out of the professor’s hand, and it slowly started to make a human figure. Soon it began to reveal its ident.i.ty fully, and Suhyuk had no choice but to be stunned.
There was the same self of him when he was young, who resembled him exactly, was holding the man’s hand. This another Suhyuk was making an annoying expression, but he looked like a child before him. It looked as if he shaked off the man’s hands and dashed toward him. But he couldn’t because the man held him tightly.
“This is all I could do for you,” said the man.
He looked at the young Suhyuk he was holding tightly and then turned his eyes at Suhyuk.
He didn’t say any words, and that was very brief.
He turned back and began walking.
The young Suhyuk resisted following him, but could not help being dragged along.
On the contrary, the man in a surgical gown looked as peaceful as ever.
Suhyuk reached out his hand quickly to get hold of him, but failed.
The man had already disappeared.
The ticking sound of the watch woke him up.
He had fallen asleep before he knew it. Though he slept a little, he felt unusually great.
Rising from the bed, Suhyuk put his white gown on the hanger.
It was time he would leave the place.
Who said time flies like an arrow?
One season pa.s.sed quickly, and Suhyuk could not be seen any more at Daehan Hospital.
Still there were many patients visiting the hospital.
It was where Suhyuk, the n.o.bel Prize winner, once worked.
Patients felt it regrettable not to see him any more. It was only natural that they wanted to be taken care of by a famous doctor like Suhyuk. Nonetheless, there were many talented doctors at Dahan’s. They just did their best to see and treat the patients.
Among them was a doctor who had an unusual high voice tone.
He was none other than Park Sungjae.
Park was touching the foreheads of interns as if he didn’t like their performance.
‘You guys are troublemakers…’
Soon Park opened his mouth,
“I told you to gather by 2am, right?”
Then he went up to a female intern, saying
“You set the alarm, but it didn’t buzz? You did have a sound sleep, right?”
Shaking his head, Park’s eyes met another intern’s for the last time. As the intern came on time, he was confident.
“You didn’t do anything good, either, dude. You alone came here on time. Good! So, you expected me to praise you for that? No way. You should have brought them here the moment you found your fellow interns were not here.”
Letting out a long sigh, Park looked at the interns who now stepped back, scared at him.
“You guys said you wanted to be a doctor like Lee Suhyuk, right?”
“Did you see him?”
“Yes, I saw him during the medical college days.”
Suhyuk once gave a lecture to the medical students at the request of his alma mater.
“There is a rumor that he didn’t sleep much even during his interns.h.i.+p. Actually I’ve never seen him nodding off when he worked with me. When I came to work early in the morning, he was already in his office looking at the charts and beside the patient. What about you? You are saying Dr. Lee is your icon? Respect him? Never say that wherever you go. Each of your behavior will stain his name and honor. Anyone who doesn’t work hard enough doesn’t have qualification to even mention his name,” said Park.
“I’m sorry, sir.
“Did you attend his marriage ceremony?”
At Park’s sudden asking, the interns blinked their eyes.
“I mean, Dr. Lee Suhyuk’s marriage ceremony.”
Park shook his head, disappointed.
To him, they were just smooth talker even though they respected Dr. Lee, chasing after and looking up at Dr. Lee’s fame alone without any consideration.
He felt that they needed some sort of tight discipline.
“You guys, just keep thinking ‘I’m not the person of what I am supposed to be’ for the next one month.”
It was a place where shally villas were located here and there.
Though it was early in the morning, the atmosphere was eerie around the cracked buildings with peeled-off paints. There was a big mountain behind. Actually the place was crowded with many shabby houses with the winding steps. The houses were located face to face, and the gap between them was narrow like an alley.
Tweet, tweet, tweet.
Some sparrows flying over the area perched on the electric cords of the utility poles.
Then the sparrows suddenly flew away at the walking sound of a human being.
It was an old woman in her late 60s, who wiped sweats from her face, looking at a building.
“It’s true they’re accepting patients there!”
A thick shape of cross in green that was painted at the entrance of the building.
It was a hospital.
The people in the neighborhood, watching lots of interior renovation work, boasted that whatever business they started, they would go to ruin.
Actually many start-up business were ruined like that, including a chicken shop, clothing shop, etc. Whenever they opened a store near the building, they would soon close their shops and left because of the poor location. It was a place where most of the residents were poor.
Even though they were sick, most of them didn’t visit the hospital to save money.
A new hospital was open in such a situation.
Some said as they’re smart, the doctors would find out the realities belatedly and change their mind not to open the hospital.
Despite that, the hospital was opened today!
“Good for me,” said the old woman.
She didn’t go to a faraway hospital for physical therapy.
She went into the hospital slowly.
The hallway was long, contrary to her expectation.
As the building was big, its hallway was naturally long, she thought while walking on.
She saw various paintings on the wall while she pa.s.sed by.
Then she heard a woman’s voice in front of her.
“Yes, we’re looking for experienced personnel who can get down to work right away. You said you have two years of experience? Okay, then. When are you available?”
At the moment the woman talking at the front desk found her.
“I’ve a new patient here. Can I call you back in a minute? Thanks.”
Putting down the phone, she smiled brightly at the old woman.
She was the first patient of the day.
Coming out of the front desk, she made a polite bow to the woman.
“h.e.l.lo, grandman. What pain brought you here?”
At her asking the woman looked around.
She felt as if she was in a big hospital. The TV set was huge and there were many chairs in the waiting room. It was clean more than anything else. But there was no patient around.
“Have you not opened yet?”
She shook her head lightly. Then her nameplate glittered at the sunlight.
“There are no patients yet because it’s not yet the business hour. Today is the first day our hospital opens. The nurses will be here soon.”
Hana was not a nurse. She was supposed to take care of simple tasks and accounting.
“Oh, I got here too early. Can I take a seat over there and wait?”
As it turned out, it was not yet even 8am.
Hana made a smile, saying,
“No, you can see the doctor now. He is here.”
“Oh, I’m so sorry…Thanks. My back is terrible, so I want some physical therapy.”
Hana showed a worried expression, saying,
“Ooops… do you feel only physical therapy would do?”
“Uh? When I visited a big hospital, they wanted to take something like an MRI. But it’s too expensive, so I want only therapy…”
“Well, you can pay only 10,000 won for it here. You might have it taken for 1,000 won if you’re talking to the doctor well,” said Hana.
The woman laughed merrily.
After all, this is not the place like a traditional market where all kinds of bargaining was made.
Then the door of the examination room opened, and appeared a doctor in a white gown.
The woman’s eyes were widening gradually at him.
She saw him a lot on the TV news that said he received some great award. Wasn’t he the same doctor?
“Come on in!”
Greeting her gladly, Suhyuk made a bright smile.