Mark’s eyes narrowed and Derek stifled another laugh.

“Well, it is hard in these smaller communities to get proper assistance when needed,” said John.

Now it was Derek’s turn to grind his teeth as John gave him this jab.

“Oh, Dr. Taylor has been wonderful. I honestly don’t know how he manages to run things so smoothly and skillfully on his own. The town needs a hospital and more staff for sure,” Evelyn said. “No, the fault of this patient falling through the cracks lies solely with the rotating OB/GYNs.”

“How did you come to that conclusion, Dr. Saunders?” Mark asked tersely.

“I came to that conclusion because I have a patient who is documented as having intrauterine growth restriction, and yet she was never informed of that suspicion and an amniocentesis wasn’t performed at twenty weeks. She’s now at thirty-two weeks.”

John frowned and Mark gritted his teeth.

“Perhaps an amnio would’ve put the patient in danger—and perhaps that patient didn’t follow doctor’s orders and get herself to Sitka or Juneau to have it taken care of with proper genetic counsellors?”

Evelyn smiled and picked up her menu. “Perhaps. But something should’ve been done before this.”

Derek was having the best time. He loved her sense of humor and he especially loved watching Dr. Mark Pearson squirm in his seat. Evelyn was smart, she had an edge, and he was really enjoying this interchange.

“What’s good here?” Evelyn asked, directing her question to John, who looked relieved to turn the conversation away from talking about Mark’s error.

* * *

It took every ounce of Evelyn’s strength during that long dinner not to reach across the table and throttle Dr. Mark Pearson for so many reasons, but she didn’t want to embarrass Derek or John, who was a lovely man.

She was very aware that she was being wooed by this hospital, but she wasn’t interested in Juneau General. Not if it meant that she had to work with Dr. Pearson. Perhaps he was a capable OB/GYN, but his mismanagement of two patients in Wolf’s Harbor put a sour taste in her mouth.

The dinner was delicious, and she was glad to be treated to lobster and wine. She was even more glad that she would have the full run of all the hospital’s facilities.

She’d received a text from Joe Jr. in the middle of the meal that stated he and Jennifer were in Hoonah for the night, so they wouldn’t have to spend all day on the road, and Evelyn had texted back that it was a smart decision.

“Well, gentleman, it’s been an absolute pleasure, but it’s been a long day and I have to prepare for a very risky amniocentesis tomorrow.” Evelyn stood up and the men followed suit.

“I look forward to seeing you tomorrow,” John said, taking her hand.

“Thank you, John,” said Derek, shaking John’s hand next.

Mark just nodded, but didn’t say anything as she slid out of the booth, completely satisfied that she’d put the pompous ass in his place.

Derek slid out after her and guided her through the restaurant.

They didn’t say anything until they were outside, but when they were a few feet from the restaurant Evelyn started laughing uncontrollably, as did Derek. It eased the tension between them that had become almost palpable.

“Evelyn, that dinner…that was worth the drive to Juneau,” Derek said through his laughing. “Mark’s face, it was priceless. I love karma.”

“It was good, wasn’t it?” She giggled. “I didn’t know he was going to be there.”

“Neither did I. I swear. I was worried you were going to deck him.”

“I wanted to, believe me,” Evelyn muttered. “He was brought there as bait.”


“I’m a woman,” she said astutely.

Derek grinned lazily. “I’m very well aware of that.”

Heat bloomed in her cheeks. “I mean he’s a very good-looking man and he was meant to entice me. This isn’t been the first time this has happened and it probably won’t be the last.”

“How many times has this happened to you before?”

“Twice, really. And one time it did work. I was with Nathan for two years.”

“You don’t seem sad about it,” Derek remarked.

She shrugged. “It was for the best.”

“You wanted different things?”

She nodded. “I wanted a career and he wanted roots, so we ended our relationship.”

“I’m sorry.”

“Don’t be. It’s fine. I’ve learned not to be dazzled by the best in show at a hospital.”

“I hadn’t noticed that about Mark before, but I suppose he is. So, would you have been enticed if it hadn’t been Dr. Pearson?”

Amy Ruttan Books | Billionaire Romance Books |