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"Uh, Ash... who the hell is that?" Josh asked suddenly, pointing at the door.
"Huh?" I lifted my head up, following his gaze... and burst out laughing. It was the new girl from earlier, the one who had the audacity to claim that "pumpkins weren't that bad."
She was leaning against the window of the door, her palms lying flat on the wood and her mouth in a perfect 'o' shape. Not to mention the look of utter despair on her face. She seemed to be muttering something to herself, slamming her hands against the door like there was no tomorrow.
Ah, the joy we patients bring to the hospital.
I was seriously considering whether or not to get more chocolate as we enjoyed the view when suddenly, the banging noise disappeared. Pumpkin girl had paused, breathing in heavily while staring at something in the distance. I watched as she tightened her jaw, turned the corner, and fled.
What on earth...?
I stood up hastily, stuffing the rest of the chocolate into my mouth as I moved toward the exit. "Save me some food," I called over my shoulder, winking at Josh.
He rolled his eyes. "And where do you think you're going?"
"Following that girl," I said. "She looks distressed."
"And what are you going to do? Help?" Josh asked, looking amused. "That doesn't sound like you."
I feigned shock. "What do you mean? For your information, I have developed quite a fondness for helping out damsels in distress."
"Oh really?" he raised a brow. "Since when?"
"Since about thirty seconds ago."
Josh sighed, shooing me out of the room.
"You have to get out soon, you know," I said, whirling around. "Roommate coming, remember?"
He nodded, putting his hands up. "I'll leave soon. Just gonna grab some drinks. Anyway, are you going to follow her or not?"
I nodded, closing the door quietly. Peering down the hallway, I was just able to catch a glimpse of the door swinging shut behind the pumpkin girl.
I headed down the hallway after her, twisting through the maze-like corridors. I wondered vaguely what news she could have gotten to make her so agitated. After all, she seemed fine when I saw her this morning. But, then again, this was a hospital. Bad news was practically inevitable.
Shoving through the double doors, I was able to find her through the swarm of blue, green, and white uniforms. She was making her way across the main entrance, eyes straight ahead and her heels clicking against the tiled floors.
For Christ's sake, who wears heels in a hospital?
I watched as she stopped for a second, turned around, and frowned. Ah, The usual "I have no idea where I'm going in this stupid hell hole of a hospital" expression.
For once, I could understand exactly how she felt. Cherryside hospital was huge. I've been here for weeks already and I still couldn't get from my room to Josh's without walking into every single room in this building by mistake.
Sighing, I followed her across the entrance and through the cafeteria. Pumpkin girl must have been either extremely high on adrenaline or had absolutely no problems with her lungs because by the time I had reached the back doors, I was panting and on the verge of a serious coughing fit.
How I mourn my healthy, fit body. Just a few weeks ago I was captain of the hockey team, working out every day without rest. And now I could barely catch up with a girl who thought pumpkins were worth eating.
Clearing my throat, I gave myself a minute to catch my breath before darting after her. Treading behind the girl, I walked up several flights of stairs and into a long, vacant hallway that had about as much personality as my fish.
Which was to say none.
Seeming to have found what she was looking for, pumpkin girl stopped in front of one of the doors and knocked. As I moved forward, I realized that she had stopped in front of Allegra's room. Strange.
"Algae?" she called, pounding on the door furiously. "Algae! I have to talk to you - urgently!"
I'm sorry, but did she just call Allegra Algae?? I wanted to laugh. We'll see what Allegra has to see about that. I'm keeping my fingers crossed for some yelling. There's nothing like watching your favorite nurse yelling at other patients for a change.
Walking toward the girl silently, I got a proper look at her for the first time. Honey brown eyes, velvety lashes, glossy hair. She was pretty, even with a mask covering half of her face. I took a few more steps toward her, stopping at what I assumed was six feet.
"Nice to see you again, pumpkin," I said.
She looked startled, turning around as she fixed her gaze on me. Her eyes narrowed. "Oh, it's you," she said, her expression turning into something of irritation as she took a few steps back.
There goes my ego.
"You do know that this is the nurse's ward, don't you?"
"Of course," she answered haughtily. "I need to speak to Algae. Where is she? Lunch break is over by now, isn't it— Why do you have that stupid smirk on your face?" she glared at me.
I shrugged. "I was just wondering who "Algae" is. Never heard of her before. However, I do know an Allegra—"
"ASHER REYES!" A voice bellowed from across the hall. I cursed as I spun around. Lo and behold, as if I had summoned her by merely saying her name, Allegra emerged from the shadows. She strode toward us, scowling. "Asher—"
"Yeah, yeah. I'm too close," I guessed, stepping back.
Allegra glared. "Six feet at all times," she said, placing her hand between us. "The CDC and WHO specifically instructed people to stay six feet apart. As you should know, the distance of three to six feet from each other is known as the breathing zone. That means people who are within that space—"