CHAPTER ELEVEN

“I APPRECIATE YOU staying on, Tim,” Derek said as he handed a file back to Dr. Vance.

They had gotten in late last night. And still all he could think about was what had happened in that cabin, the feeling that they were a family, and seeing Mo sleeping on Evelyn.

He couldn’t help himself.

And even though he knew it shouldn’t have happened, that night in the cabin had been wonderful. Amazing. It was hard not to think of the way her body had felt under his. The taste of her lips and the scent of her hair, the softness of her skin.

Focus.

He had to be careful.

He’d been lax in letting Evelyn in when he should’ve been guarding his heart. But it was difficult to do that around Evelyn. She got under all his defenses. But he couldn’t let Mo get hurt.

She smells like coconut and tastes just as sweet.

He shook that thought out of his head.

“It’s no problem, Derek,” Tim replied. “I had some family stuff to attend to anyway. Besides, I enjoy my visits up here, and I wouldn’t have given up the opportunity to watch Dr. Saunders in work.”

Derek’s stomach dropped as he saw the way that Tim was looking at Evelyn. Not that he could blame him in the least. Evelyn was beautiful, and a world-class doctor. Although Tim supposedly had a girlfriend in Sitka…

And even though he shouldn’t let it bother him, because he had already made up his mind that he wasn’t going to pursue Evelyn, he was jealous of another man looking at her. Because the simple fact of the matter was that he wished he was free to go after her. He wished she would stay. He wished he deserved her.

“It’s not like I’ll be doing much,” Evelyn mumbled as she went through a chart at the front desk before the clinic opened, totally oblivious to Tim’s interest in her.

Good.

“Still, Dr. Saunders, I would be keen to learn from you,” Tim said eagerly.

Evelyn looked up. “Of course—and call me Evelyn. It’s fine. We’re all working together here. Now, if you’ll both excuse me, I have to prep for a possible emergency C-section. We need to get a lot more blood stocked in the fridge here.”

“Emergency C-section?” Tim asked, intrigued.

“Yes, one of my patients here has intrauterine growth restriction. She’s on her way back from Juneau, where I performed an amniocentesis which I’m still waiting on results for. I have everything I need—including an incubator which was generously donated by Juneau General just in case.”

“How nice of them,” Derek teased and Evelyn grinned at him.

They both knew that it was a bribe to get her to consider working at Juneau when her time was up in Wolf’s Harbor. Still, they weren’t going to look a gift horse in the mouth.

“If I can help in any way, Evelyn. I’m here to assist you,” Tim said eagerly. “I would love to assist you.”

“I’m good for now—but, thanks.” She wandered away, seemingly totally clueless about his compliments.

Derek chuckled to himself. She probably wasn’t clueless to Tim’s subtle flirting with her—she probably didn’t care. And that was what he liked so much about her.

The phone rang and Tim answered it. “Wolf’s Harbor Medical.”

Evelyn blushed as Derek shared a look with her. They had both agreed in the morning that they wouldn’t mention it anymore. That it had been just a weak moment. They would carry on as they always had. But still, watching her now in the clinic, being so close to her, it was hard not to think of her in his arms.

“How bad?” Tim asked, with an edge of concern in his voice.

Derek turned and watched as Tim took down information and then ended the call.

“What’s wrong?” Derek asked.

“A young woman on the island up the channel—possible miscarriage and bleeding heavily.” Tim handed the notes to Derek.

“Okay—you man the clinic and I’ll get Evelyn out to Yashee Island.”

“I can take Evelyn out to Yashee Island,” Tim offered. “I would love to assist her.”

Derek cocked any eyebrow. “Do you know where Yashee Island is? Do you have a boat?”

“Yes, I know where it is. I grew up here. But no boat.”

“Then you stay here,” Derek said.

Tim laughed. “I’m trying too hard, aren’t I?”

“Just a bit. Stay here at the clinic and I’ll get Evelyn out to the island.”

“Okay, Derek.” Tim chuckled.

Derek picked up his coat from the rack and went to exam room one, where Evelyn was preparing everything necessary for an emergency C-section.

“You’re needed,” Derek said.


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