Chapter 24: Provocation
"It's fine. I'll fix your hair for you later. Come here and give me a kiss first."
Huo Mian could tell that the voices belonged to He Man and Ning Zhiyuan.
No wonder he had moved out in such a hurry. So that was how things were...
The corner of her lips twitched. With a chuckle, she lowered the hand she'd raised to knock and turned around to leave.
She was just in time to see another doctor from the Ophthalmology Department approaching the door. "Huh, Huo Mian, why don't you go inside if you're already here?"
"It's alright. I have other things to do."
By this time, the two inside had clearly heard the conversation. He Man immediately leaped up from Ning Zhiyuan's lap, smoothing out her collar and hair.
That was when the ophthalmologist, Doctor Zhu, just walked in. Glancing at He Man, he told Ning Zhiyuan, "I just saw your fiancé."
"Oh really?" Ning Zhiyuan's response was rather indifferent.
"You guys… are you guys alright? Weren't you two getting married?"
"You can't be serious …" Doctor Zhu was surprised.
"Humph, I see no reason to keep a woman like that around." With that, Ning Zhiyuan stood up and, buttoning up his white lab coat, left the room.
He Man trailed cautiously behind him.
Seeing this, Doctor Zhu shook his head, dejected. Young people these days really treated relationships too lightly. What had the world come to?
"Doctor Ning, did you really… break up with Huo Mian?"
"What do you think?"
"That's fantastic! Now, people won't say that I'm the 'other woman' anymore. When are you going to tell everyone at the hospital that we are together?" He Man whined, half-flirting.
Ning Zhiyuan glanced at her carelessly, "What's the rush? Isn't it more fun to sneak around?"
"Oh, you're the worst! Really…" He Man reached out and pinched Ning Zhiyuan's hand lightly as she squealed.
As one of the assistant nurses in the Ophthalmology Department, she had admired Ning Zhiyuan for a long time, and for a good reason: Ning Zhiyuan was both handsome and smart.
In addition, his surgery performances had been good. So, although he was still an intern, he would soon become an attending physician. By then, his status within the department would be even higher.
Before this, she'd always been looking for opportunities to approach him. However, back then, Ning Zhiyuan only had eyes for Huo Mian.
It made her nearly mad with envy, watching Ning Zhiyuan go off to buy midnight snacks for Huo Mian. So long as it was something Huo Mian liked to eat, Ning Zhiyuan would go and buy it even if he had to sacrifice sleep after finishing a night shift. He was the perfect boyfriend.
Now that she had finally gotten a chance, she wouldn't let it slip away for the world.
Inside the nurse's dressing room-
Huo Mian sat resting, half-inclined and with a cup of water in her hand. Her mind was elsewhere.
When He Man walked in and saw Huo Mian sitting there alone, she felt a surge of satisfaction well up in her chest.
"Sister Huo Mian."
"What is it?" Huo Mian turned her head towards her, expressionless.
"Huo Mian, Doctor Ning and I…"
"I know everything. What, did you want me to congratulate you?" Huo Mian sneered.
He Man stiffened. She felt like the Huo Mian before her now was somehow different from the gentle girl she usually was.
"That's not what I meant. I just wanted to say that I did nothing wrong. Even if it weren't for me, Doctor Ning wouldn't have stayed with you. He told me himself; it really bothers him that his future wife wasn't a virgin."
"Really? From the way you're talking, you've slept with him already, right? Otherwise, you wouldn't have come preaching to me." Turning away from He Man, Huo Mian raised her cup to her lips and took a sip.
Unwilling to back down, He Man goaded at her, "Of course, I'm clean. Doctor Ning said that he was going to marry me."
"So what?" Huo Mian stood up, demanding in an icy tone.
"So nothing. What I wanted to say is this - I won this battle, didn't I? Please stop bothering Doctor Ning. After all, you're not together anymore. A rational woman shouldn't cling to a man shamelessly." He Man's words were a warning.
After hearing this, Huo Mian gave her the sweetest of smiles.
It made the hairs on the back of He Man's neck stand up.
"Why are you smiling?"
"My mother once told me that I should give away the toys I didn't like to children that are less fortunate than me because they are pitiful."
"You…" He Man was unable to form a complete sentence. She never thought that this seemingly gentle nurse had such a dark side.
"Excuse me, let me through. I have work to do." Gesturing with her hand, Huo Mian calmly walked out of the dressing room.
Truth be told, she really wasn't too upset about Ning Zhiyuan breaking up with her. The only thing was, Ning Zhiyuan had been good to her for the past few years and that was why she wanted to try to patch things up. However, now that it had come to this, she naturally wouldn't try anymore. Shamelessly clinging on? That really wasn't her style.
Outside a delivery room in the Obstetrics and Gynecology Department-
"Huo Mian." As Huo Mian was about to go inside to help with a delivery, she was stopped by the head nurse.
"Head nurse, you called me?" Huo Mian turned around.
"The director wants you in his office," the head nurse said in a clear, crisp tone.
"The director wants me?" Huo Mian was caught by surprise. More than that, she was confused. The director was rumored to be a very busy man who wouldn't show up to the hospital more than a couple times a year, and even the head nurse hadn't had a chance to meet him this year. Why would he suddenly ask for her? What was going on?