Annie O’Reilly slowly became aware of her surroundings as she woke in the recovery room, still a bit disoriented, which was a typical after-effect of the anesthesia as it wore off. Annie gazed around the immediate area. It was familiar, but not familiar. White, sterile walls. Distinct smell of rubbing alcohol. That’s right, hospital. As her level of consciousness rose through the pea-soup thick fog, Annie realized she was still alive. It was with pure happiness and profound relief that she took a silent inventory of herself and her surroundings. The sticky tape on the back of her hand secured an intravenous line. It pulled on the delicate skin, not painfully, but enough to cause her to be constantly aware of its presence. She could hear the beep beep sound of her monitored heartbeat fill the room and the annoying itch under her nose was, no doubt, from the nasal cannula providing a continuous flow of oxygen. Her mouth was bone dry and lips were rough and chapped. The last couple of days came back to her in a wave of overwhelming memories and shattered dreams. Despite all of that, she was simply grateful to be alive.
Catching from her peripheral vision a silhouette sitting beside her, she turned, heavy-headed, to the right, fully expecting to see a nurse. Annie was pleasantly surprised, however, to find the strong profile of her very handsome surgeon, who she had only met just prior to the operation. Dr. Thomas Callahan cradled a thick blue binder in his left hand and with his right, wrote with a silver, expensive-looking Mont Blanc pen. He sat slightly hunched over, his expression in deep thought. Annie noticed the stubble of a five o’clock shadow on his prominent jaw. Soft brown curls streaked with silver poked out from under the blue surgeon’s cap at his nape. He was incredibly good-looking.
When he turned, she sharply inhaled, stunned by the unusual shade of blue in his sparkling eyes. They were almost turquoise but with a hint of jade green. They were the most beautiful windows to the soul she had ever seen. He held his head high, proud and confident on broad shoulders that could carry the weight of the world with ease, she imagined.
Annie was acutely and increasingly aware that the man’s presence caused an inappropriate stirring deep in her belly. When she met his gaze, she was presented with a full-on bright and beautiful smile. She slowly exhaled the deep breath she was holding, then mirrored his smile in return.
“I must have died and gone to heaven. Only an angel could look as good as you do.” His deep rich baritone laugh brought about the realization that her unfiltered thoughts were spoken aloud. Blood pounded in her temples as she felt heat color her face. Humiliated, Annie’s tear-filled eyes looked away. Trying to compose herself, she cleared her throat and asked, “Is it really over?” Her voice was raspy and uneven.
Annie turned her head back to face him, meeting his gaze. Dr. Callahan was chuckling, but then his smile quickly turned into a frown. “It’s alright, Ms. O’Reilly. There is no need for tears. You are fine and, yes, it is really over.” He nodded his head reassuringly. “You are in the post-op recovery room. The surgery went perfectly and you are now on the road to restored health. All you need to do for the next few days is rest and recuperate.”
Annie felt the tenderness and affection radiate off of the doctor. His steady gaze held her own as she struggled with the lingering effects of the anesthesia. It took several moments before Annie’s eyes closed, relief and contentment washing over as she recognized his welcome words.
Looking back at him, Annie spoke, her voice genuine. “Thank you so much, Doctor, for seeing me through this.” She sheepishly added, “Um, sorry for the angel comment. My brain is not firing on all cylinders just yet. Between the drugs and the jet lag, I can’t be held responsible for the stupid things I say.”
He smiled, showing her those pearly whites again. “No worries, Ms. O’Reilly. I’ve been called many things in my career. Being called an angel is actually a nice change of pace for once,” he quipped. His amused expression morphed to one of inquiry. “Please tell me, how are you feeling? Are you experiencing any pain or discomfort?” The kind concern in his voice warmed her. She caught a whiff of his masculine scent, earthy like fresh herbs and peppermint. It was pleasant and subtle, much like the man himself.
“I’m not in pain, Doctor, not right now. Actually, it feels nice to be pain-free. It’s been too long since I felt… normal.”
Thomas pursed his lips in agreement. “Yes, I would imagine that to be true, given your ordeal over the past several days.” His vivid blue eyes were full of compassion. It took Annie’s breath away.
Her ordeal. That was the understatement of the century. Cruising on a transatlantic voyage bound for several European ports, she survived what most would consider the worst-case scenario vacation nightmare. In a foreign country, with an unknown illness, and completely alone.
Ten days into the cruise, Annie experienced the most horrific and unrelenting pain in her upper stomach. The ship’s doctor, unable to diagnose her given the limited equipment on board, told her to disembark in Barcelona, the next scheduled port. Annie boarded a flight home to Boston, landing at Logan International Airport eight hours later. Perspiration broke out on her upper lip as she painstakingly hailed a taxi, luggage in hand, requesting to be taken to the closest hospital.
When this all transpired, Annie could never have imagined she would end up with the most gorgeous, sexy-as-fuck doctor in all of Boston. Glancing over at him, all Annie could think was that he was so good-looking and must be a master in the bedroom. The phrase ‘sex on legs’ kept playing in her mind. She pinned his age as close to hers, in his early forties. From what little she had seen thus far, he was well over six feet tall with a nice physique and an award-winning smile. She was positive he had excellent dental care as a kid with teeth so straight and white. He had a distinguished masculine appeal that made her toes curl. Dr. Callahan was the epitome of a woman’s dream man. He certainly looked like the embodiment of Annie’s dream man. Strong and confident. Tall with muscular arms that would hold her in a tight grip, embracing her in security.
Aware of the desert in her mouth, she asked, “May I have some water, please? My mouth is so dry. I have a sore throat too.”
The doctor winced in sympathy, patting her hand. “That is probably from the tube the anesthesiologist placed down your throat to help you breathe during the operation.”
“Oh,” she blandly replied. Annie fully expected the doctor to summon one of the nurses to assist her and was surprised to see Dr. Callahan put the chart and pen down on the bedside table and reach over. Holding something in front of her, Annie saw it was a white plastic spoon.
“Here you are. You can start with a few ice chips for now. They will help with the sore throat. We need to reintroduce fluids and food slowly and carefully as your system starts to wake up and recover from the trauma of surgery.”
Opening her mouth, Annie moaned in pleasure as the cold ice chips coated her parched mouth and scratchy throat with moisture. Chewing the small shard so it melted quickly, she opened her mouth to indicate the desire for more. Dr. Callahan complied with the silent request, bringing the spoon to her lips again with more ice. The simple act of kindness was both sensuous and tender, and his patience shocked Annie, although she was profoundly grateful for it.
As she looked up to his kind face, Annie was perplexed. She would never expect a doctor, a skilled surgeon, to feed her ice chips. Still, it was a great treat to be taken care of by someone. Anyone. Especially one as good-looking.
Always independent, Annie never asked for help from others. In her current predicament, however, she understood the need to be gracious and accept assistance. She found it odd that Dr. Callahan would assist with such a menial task, especially when there were many nurses flittering around the room, although she was unsure what they were doing. Annie was the only person in lying on a gurney, and the remaining four beds were empty. That made Dr. Callahan’s actions even stranger, but it was also very welcome. Annie was mesmerized by his humanity and his presence provided her with a sense of protection. His tender ministration warmed her and provided her with security. She felt butterflies in her stomach and knew it was not post-anesthetic nausea. No, it was desire, something she had not felt for a long time.
“Is that better, Ms. O’Reilly?” he asked in a voice laced with concern.
She nodded her head. “Yes. Thank you, Doctor. My throat feels much better now.”
“Good. Now let’s take care of those chapped lips,” he said, holding up a red tube of cherry Chapstick. It was exactly the same kind she used. Annie found that curious but did not have time to think about it further because she felt the wax being gently rubbed on her lips. She was shocked at the intimacy in the action and could not stop staring at him with wonder. She was entranced at the synergy created by what felt like a loving gesture more so than skilled professionalism.
Fatigue suddenly gripped Annie, firm and unrelenting. The exertion expended from such a simple interaction reminded her of the gravity of her situation. Her eyelids became heavy and her vision distorted as sleep threatened to take her. It was disappointing, given her desire to converse with her mysterious visitor, but she could not string a coherent thought together as the need to sleep gripped her.
Feeling his large, warm hand pat her own, she heard him say, “Just close your eyes and rest now. I will be by to see you when you are settled into your room.” Just on the fringes of slumber, the most she was able to do was slightly nod her head to acknowledge him. She was fairly certain she heard an amused chuckle as the darkness overtook her.
* * *
Thomas quietly laughed as he watched his patient drift off to sleep, feeling a deep sense of contentment. The brief interaction with Annie was pleasant and filled him with satisfaction. Pleased that he could tend to this beautiful woman, he rechecked the monitors, glad to see that her vital signs were all within normal limits for a post-operative patient. While confident that in all likelihood all would go well, Thomas knew enough to never take a simple surgery or recovery for granted. Things could go wrong that were not anticipated. Luckily, Ms. O’Reilly was a textbook case.
While not unusual for a surgeon to visit a patient in the recovery room, it was uncharacteristic to spend considerable time with one single patient, especially one that was stable. Normally, the nurses were responsible for this; however, he felt compelled to see his patient through post-op care. Thomas found Ms. O’Reilly’s story interesting. Aside from his keen desire to interact with her, taking this time gave him an opportunity to really look at her uninhibited and appreciate her attractiveness. His pale patient looked helpless and alone lying attached to the numerous wires that monitored her vital signs.
Her facial features were well-proportioned, with a cute button nose and pink cheeks coloring her ivory skin. He found the Marilyn Monroe-esque beauty mark on the right side of her face enchanting. In the relaxed state of slumber, she looked innocent and ethereal, angelic. He was surprised at the pleasure he felt by simply watching her sleep.
He believed she was the type of person one could trust. He had no basis for that assessment, but somehow felt it to be true. She had a depth of character and reminded him of an old soul. Genuine. He was really attracted to her. She brought his alpha male protective instincts out to the surface, probably because she appeared so weak and defenseless. No woman ever had such an effect on him so quickly, let alone a woman who was under his medical care. Usually he did not have to work hard at maintaining his professional persona but, with Ms. O’Reilly, that seemed to go right out the window.
Increasingly aware that the recovery room nurses were watching him with nosy curiosity, Thomas left them to monitor her. Heading back to his office, he grabbed a cup of coffee and sank into the oversized black leather ergonomic chair, propping his feet up on the sturdy antique oak desk. He needed an injection of caffeine to counteract his exhaustion. To say it had been an extremely long day was an understatement. He felt like he had just run the Boston marathon, a combination of intense fatigue, coupled with a feeling of elation, like a runner’s high. He sensed it had everything to do with his last patient. Sipping the strong brew, he reflected on the events that led to meeting her. Annie.
Hoping to leave right when his shift ended, he had been informed that there was an emergency cholecystectomy on the way up to the surgical floor. He had been grateful it was a straightforward procedure, usually completed in just under an hour, provided there were no complications. Gallbladder removal was common and he had performed hundreds of them in his career.
Thomas had logged into the computer system to read the notes on his soon-to-arrive patient. The documentation showed that she was a forty-one-year-old female suffering from an acute gallstone attack, who had been across the Atlantic Ocean when the pain started. He winced in sympathy for the poor woman. To have suffered such distress was bad enough, but while traveling must have been a miserable experience, forcing her to cut her vacation short. Tragic.
It was at that point that he had looked up to see the gurney being wheeled down the hallway. Annie O’Reilly had been officially transferred from an emergency room case to a surgical case. Her care was his responsibility to provide, oversee, and safeguard. He had prepared to meet and examine his patient, entering the pre-op suite.
Having barely looked at her as she passed him a few minutes before, Thomas really saw her for the first time, doing a double take, momentarily stunned by her attractiveness. Annie O’Reilly had soulful brown eyes and a round face that was a combination of youthful and fresh, but also showing depth and maturity. Her complexion was pale and smooth, like ivory. Her mahogany hair was fanned out on the starched white pillow in stark contrast. She appeared to be of average height for a woman, although it was hard to tell with her lying on the gurney. Thomas was pleased to see enough definition under the thin white hospital sheet to know the woman had a voluptuous physical shape. He could most definitely identify that she had large breasts, a realization that pleased him greatly. He was a breast man and ardently enjoyed extended breast and nipple play. It was upon that thought Thomas immediately recognized the inappropriateness of his internal monologue. He was not allowed to think about his patient in any way other than in the strictest professional manner.
“Hello, Ms. O’Reilly. I am Dr. Callahan and will be performing your surgery.” He extended his hand in greeting. He felt the delicate bones and soft skin of her hand when she grasped his in return. He glanced down, noticing the absence of a wedding ring on her left hand, which lay beside her. Thomas was irritated with himself for even looking. The woman was ill and needed his expert skills. Lusting over her was wrong on so many levels. The sound of her melodic voice brought him back to reality.
“Hi, Doctor. It’s nice to meet you, although I would prefer that we did not have to meet under these particular circumstances.” Her smile was beautiful.
Thomas chuckled. “Yes, I can understand why you would feel that way. Let’s see about getting you taken care of. I’m going to do a quick exam, alright?” He could see the apprehension on her face. “It will just take a minute,” he reassured her.
Annie nodded her head and bit the corner of her lip, which Thomas found endearing. Carefully pulling down the stiff sheet, he pulled up her hospital gown. Probing the area with his fingers, he became hot and his heart beat faster. Her skin felt so silky. He could not help but confirm that his patient was a well-endowed D cup. That revelation caused his cock to stir in his scrub pants, the unwelcome reaction horrifying him. It was unacceptable. Thomas needed to complete the exam with the required detached and objective mindset of a surgeon. Pressing down firmly where her gallbladder and liver were located, he saw her wince in pain.
“I’m sorry, Ms. O’Reilly. I know that must hurt,” he said sympathetically. It bothered him to cause her more discomfort, despite the fact that it was a necessary evil.
“It’s okay, I understand, Doctor. I’ll just be happy to get this over with and get home. How long will I be in the hospital?” she asked, her voice laced with apprehension.
Swiftly, Thomas carefully covered her with the sheet. “If all goes well, as I imagine it will, you should be able to go home in a couple of days. It will depend on your recovery. Right now, let’s get you in the operating suite and remove that gallbladder.”
Annie smiled. “Sounds good to me, Doc. Thank you for taking care of me.” Annie bit the corner of her lip again. His cock grew stiffer, leaving him with a half-mast boner. Mortified, he used his lab coat, pulling the sides closed, to cover the evidence of his lack of professionalism.
With a nod and final words that he would see her in the operating room, Thomas followed the stringent hospital protocol, scrubbing up to his elbows while his mind wandered. Poor woman suffered through that pain for so many hours. She’s really very pretty. And those ample breasts beg to be caressed. Stop thinking about her breasts, you jackass!
Thomas again scolded himself for thinking about his attraction to Annie. He should not even be mentally referring to her by her given name. She’s Ms. O’Reilly. Your patient. Nothing more. In a few minutes, he would hold her life in his hands, literally. Looking through the window into the operating room, he could see that his team was preparing for his arrival. He felt the familiar rush of power and control at the sight of every one in place, ready and waiting for him to direct and guide them. With his thoughts finally in check, he confidently walked into the O.R. to do his job. He would lead the team to restore his patient’s health.
* * *
Annie was staring off into space when Dr. Callahan sauntered into her room the next day.
“Ms. O’Reilly, it’s very nice to see you fully awake. How are you feeling?” he asked with a confident, professional demeanor. “You certainly are looking better than the last time I saw you.” He smiled.
“Well, anyone would look better after getting the good meds, Doctor.” She returned his smile. Her voice was raspy from limited use. She cleared her throat. “By the way, please call me Annie. Ms. O’Reilly is so formal and, let’s face it, you’ve poked and prodded around inside me, so no need for formalities.” She could feel the heat of blood rushing to her face, evidence of the innuendo in her statement. Stupid. Stupid. Now you’re scarlet red with embarrassment, making your foolish quip all the more noticeable. Annie could not help but admonish herself. She hated how easily she blushed when embarrassed. It was a curse she suffered from very early on in her childhood that she never outgrew.
Thomas chuckled. “Yes, you are right there. Luckily you were a textbook case and the poking and prodding was minimally invasive.” He winked conspiratorially. “So please tell me, are you experiencing any pain or discomfort?”
“No, Doctor, I’m not in any pain just now. I feel groggy and not myself, but that’s it. In fact, I’m rather enjoying the feeling of no pain after the past few days. I can’t say that this hospital bed is very comfortable though.” She wiggled, repositioning herself. “I can’t wait to get home and sleep in my own bed.” Annie’s embarrassment grew worse. Why are you talking about your bed? Brain-to-mouth filter, hello, where are you?
“Yes, I can imagine, after your days at sea and now in the hospital, that going home is an appealing prospect. I’m happy to hear you are not in any pain. You certainly seem to be recovering well post-surgery.” He glanced up at the monitors above her head. “Your vital signs look good and the nurse told me that you were able to hold down some soft foods. That’s good news. I’m pleased with your progress. If you continue on this path, I see no reason why you cannot be discharged tomorrow. Do you have someone who can be with you over the first twenty-four hours you are home?”
Ah, no. Shit. What the hell should I say? “Oh, well, I uh… um, I guess I could call a friend from work to help out,” she stuttered. His intense look was penetrating. Annie felt as if she were naked, raw, and exposed. She believed he could see right into her soul. It was ironic that, where she should feel a sense of discomfort at that, she actually felt safe. It was bizarre that this stranger could make her feel sheltered and secure. Protected. It had been such a long time since she felt that way. If ever.
His brows furrowed and his jaw visibly tensed. “Surely you have family who can help you?”
“Well, I have some family but… they live far away.” Yeah, that’s a good answer. We’ll go with that.
His nod was curt. “I see. Let me leave you now to rest. I will come check on you tomorrow morning and decide if discharge is appropriate. Do not hesitate to call the nurse if you are in pain. Your body needs rest to heal. Pain management is a critical part of your recovery, so no trying to brave it out.” He had a slightly admonishing tone in his deep, masculine voice. “I’ve left orders for a strong pain medication that the nurses can give you if needed.” His voice softened, as did his sympathetic blue eyes. “Promise me that you will inform them if you become uncomfortable so they can administer it if necessary.” He added, “Do you understand, Ms. O’Reilly?” The domineering tone was not to be ignored.
Annie was a bit taken aback at his forceful nature. She wondered if he was this way with all of his patients. “I will, Doctor. Thank you for your concern,” she responded. “After all I have been through, believe me, I don’t wish to put on a brave front. If I experience pain, I want the drugs, though I do feel much better at the moment.”
“Excellent,” the doctor said, patting her hand just as he had done when she was in the recovery room. The gesture provided her with much-needed solace. Annie saw his blue eyes widen as he grasped her hand firmly in both of his. “Your hand is freezing. Are you chilly? How long have you been cold? I’ll let your nurse know to bring you another blanket right now.” He spoke so rapidly, Annie had a hard time formulating a response. She was surprised by his reaction.
“Thank you, Doctor. I am a bit chilled and would certainly appreciate another blanket.” She paused. “I’m so tired. Think I’ll take a nap.” She let out a long breath. Annie stared at her hand still clasped in both of his, amazed and unbelieving. His large, strong hands completely covered hers, holding firm. His thumb was gently rubbing over her knuckles. That small action did more than just comfort her, it made her feel cherished in a way she never experienced before. She did not ever want him to let go. What the hell am I thinking? There is no way he’s interested in me.
Thomas nodded. “Good, you get some rest and I will check in on you later.” Releasing her hand, he laid it gently on the bed, patting the top of it one more time before he walked out of the room.
Annie immediately felt sad at the loss of his presence. What the hell was that? The encounter with her attractive doctor left her feeling unsettled and unsure. Must be the meds messing with my head. Annie lay quietly thinking about Dr. Callahan. He was ‘McDreamy,’ the name used to describe the actor who portrayed a doctor on a popular medical television show. She thought it was Grey’s Anatomy but wasn’t completely sure, not that it really mattered.
His full head of shortly trimmed dark brown hair was streaked with silver gray, giving him a mature, distinguished look. She could tell that his physique was lean but muscular. His sky blue scrubs brought the color out of his striking blue eyes even more. Annie thought they were the most unusual shade of blue, but was unable to think of an adequate comparison. More striking than his eye color was the piercing, intense stare as he looked at her. It caused a stirring of arousal down deep in her belly. It was hard to believe that she could feel any sexual attraction having just been cut open and operated on, but she felt the evidence of wetness gather between her legs. This was her last thought as she drifted off to sleep.
* * *
Thomas used the walk to the nurse’s station to calm down. Get a grip! He took a few deep breaths, trying to clear his head. The encounter with his patient had been unnerving. He could not understand the strange sensation that went through him whenever he was with Ms. O’Reilly. She had looked so lost in the oversized hospital bed. She seemed fragile and delicate. Every protective instinct inside him spilled out when he was near her. The connection between them was undeniable. It was intangible, but nonetheless present. Something about her called to him on a primal level. It was a foreign feeling that shook him at his core. Where is all of this coming from?
He searched for the nurse assigned to Annie, glad that it was Maggie Simmons on duty tonight. With Maggie having over twenty years of nursing experience, Thomas knew that Annie would receive excellent, professional care. Reaching the nurse’s station, he greeted her. “Good evening, Maggie.” He tried to sound jovial when he spoke.
The portly nurse looked up from the desk. “Well, hello and good evening to you too, Dr. Callahan. All finished with rounds?” Maggie asked cheerfully, with a slight Irish brogue.
“Yes, I was just in with Ms. O’Reilly. She seems to be recovering nicely.” He stood there smiling.
“She is a model patient. So polite. Very quiet and appreciative of assistance. Doesn’t complain or demand. I’ll take more like her any day,” Maggie responded.
“Yes, she is very polite and appreciative,” he agreed, distracted. And very pretty. With very expressive brown eyes the shade of burnt amber. “It’s no wonder given what she went through on that vacation. I’m sure Ms. O’Reilly is glad to be back in the US.” The nurse smiled, nodding. “Maggie, I did notice that Ms. O’Reilly was rather cold. Her hand was freezing. I’m a bit concerned about it. As you well know, dramatic changes in body temperature can indicate a post-operative complication. Can you bring her a warm blanket and monitor her temperature closely tonight, please?”
Maggie smiled. “Absolutely, Doctor. I was just about to head to the supply closet anyway. I’ll grab an extra blanket and bring it right to her. It’s about time I check her vital signs anyway.”
“Excellent. I’m going to head home now. Please make sure she gets another blanket,” he repeated, “and if anything changes with her status, please call me immediately. I don’t care what time of night it is. I want to be kept fully informed about Ms. O’Reilly’s condition.”
“I certainly will, Doctor,” she confirmed. “I’ll note it for the next shift to check her vitals frequently and contact you if a pattern emerges or the problem persists.”
Realizing that he was acting rather out of character and that the nurse was studying him, Thomas wanted to make a speedy exit. “Have a good night, Maggie. I’ll see you tomorrow.” With that final statement, the doctor abruptly turned, walking in the direction of the elevators.
“Good night, Doctor,” her voice carried down the hall.
* * *
Annie had difficulty sleeping that night. She would catnap, but her mind would wander to the encounters she had with her dreamy doctor. She considered her reaction to him, leaving her confused. The desire to talk to him on a personal level was strong. She wanted to learn all about him, finding the man an interesting paradox. He was incredibly attractive and successful, but there was something more with him. She liked being in his presence and listening to him talk, and the contrast between his comforting, empathetic approach and his forceful and demanding tone made her look forward to his visits. She continued to have these erotic thoughts until exhaustion weighed her down.
After some time, Annie was startled awake. Dr. Callahan was standing beside her bed, fury radiating off his body. Didn’t he just leave my room? Annie was concerned at the look of anger on his face. “Is… is something wrong, Doctor?” she asked hesitantly.
“Yes, Ms. O’Reilly, there certainly is something wrong. The nurse told me that you have been very difficult, getting out of bed without assistance last night. Is that true?” The anger in his eyes was frightening, the intensity making Annie feel like a child.
“Um… well… I didn’t mean to be difficult. I just wanted to go to the bathroom on my own and the nurses were too busy to come when I needed. I didn’t think there was anything wrong with getting up. I just had to go to the bathroom.” Annie knew her face was scarlet. “I also thought it would speed up my progress so I could go home quicker.”
“Nothing wrong with it?” he asked, incredulous. “Do you not understand that you just had major surgery and your body is just starting to recover? You are not supposed to get out of bed on your own. You are not supposed to get out of bed at all, even with assistance, unless I clear you to do so. I am your doctor and you are required to follow my orders, do you understand, Ms. O’Reilly? I make the decisions and you comply with my directions. That is how it works.”
Annie experienced a strange combination of fear and arousal. His commanding presence and dominant demeanor were a complete turn-on. A delightful shiver of excitement and wanting went through her. Her heart beat erratically. “Y… yes, yes, I understand, Doctor. I’m sorry. It won’t happen again, I promise.”
“I’m afraid your promise is not enough, Ms. O’Reilly. Your impertinence must be punished. You could have caused yourself serious harm and I would be remiss as your doctor if I did not take you in hand.”
Annie’s pulse reached the danger stage. Punished? Annie was unsure of his meaning. “What do you mean, punished?” she asked slowly.
“Sir,” he responded firmly.
“Sir?” she repeated, confused.
“Yes, Ms. O’Reilly, your question should contain the honorific when you address me as a sign of respect. Your question should be ‘What do you mean, punished, sir?’”
Annie’s eyes widened in response. She was sure her engorged nipples were poking out from her hospital gown. Her panties were dampening by the minute as the dominant doctor took charge and demanded her submission. Annie had always wanted to submit to the will of a strong, take-charge man and here he was, Dr. Callahan, chastising her behavior. A delicious shudder of desire coursed through her body.
“I’m sorry, sir. I meant no disrespect, sir. I did not mean to cause trouble. Please, please forgive me,” Annie rambled, still stunned by this six-foot Adonis standing in front of her.
“Turn over, Ms. O’Reilly.” His command was firm.
“W… w… what do you mean? W… what are you going to do?” she asked nervously.
“I’m going to teach you a lesson, Ms. O’Reilly. You are going to roll over onto your tummy and submit to a punishment spanking. Now, do as I told you and turn over.”
Annie swallowed hard. “You can’t do that! You can’t give me a punishment spanking. Who do you think you are?”
“I am your doctor and I intend to follow through. You misbehaved, Ms. O’Reilly. You broke the rules and you must be punished. My punishments always include a bare-bottom spanking. It won’t be difficult to bare your bottom given the thin gown you are wearing. It opens so conveniently in the back.” His tone was condescending.
A thrilling desire rushed through Annie. She always wanted to experience a punishment spanking. The erotic stories she enjoyed never aroused her to the degree she was in this moment. Looking up, she could see that the doctor was serious in his intent and waited with barely a thread of patience left. Slowly, Annie turned over onto her stomach. Looking over her shoulder, Annie saw the curve of a smile on his face as he pulled the covers off of her.
“Let’s take these panties down, shall we?” he asked rhetorically. Annie felt his fingers curl into the elastic of her white cotton panties and, with painstakingly slow movements, pull the panties down to expose her naked bottom to the cool air.
“You have a lovely bottom, Ms. O’Reilly.” The warmth of his hand rubbing her butt cheeks brought another wave of arousal to course through her body. “You will receive twenty spanks. I expect you to count and thank me after each one. Let’s begin.”
Annie’s bottom clenched, knowing that the first strike was about to fall. “One, thank you, sir. Two, thank you, sir,” she called out through clenched teeth. It really hurt. “Three, thank you, sir.” The stinging of her bottom was like nothing she ever experienced. By the fifth spank, Annie’s eyes filled with tears. By the final spank, she was sobbing. Her ass burned, but that was not the worst of it. The shame. That was what really hurt. To be punished for her misbehavior by her doctor. It was humiliating. But more humiliating was the ache present between her legs. She could feel the swell of arousal, her pussy heavy and drenched.
Annie could not process her emotions quickly enough. She was extremely aroused by the experience. She was on the verge of coming. Her pussy clenched, aching for relief. She moaned softly as his fingers caressed her clit, bringing her to the brink of orgasm. His expert touch gave her electric shocks as her body seared with need. Going over the edge, Annie moaned louder as her pussy spasmed with deep contractions. The release took her breath away, leaving her heaving as she came to her senses. What the hell just happened?
Annie was face down on the bed with her right hand buried deep between her thighs. It was a dream. Mercifully, her body was still covered and she was alone in her hospital room. Her blood pounded as she righted herself in bed. Spying the box of tissues on the nightstand, Annie quickly wiped the evidence of her arousal from her hand. How humiliating. Masturbating in a hospital room. She was barely aware when a nurse quickly entered her room.
“Ms. O’Reilly, I heard you moaning. Are you in pain?” she asked, concerned.
Oh, crap! What the hell do I say? “Ah, yeah, it is starting to hurt now. I’m in a little bit of pain.” Annie hoped she covered her lie convincingly.
Nodding her head, the nurse said, “Well, let me get you some pain medication. You really need to ask for it as soon as you start to feel uncomfortable. By the sound of your moans, you waited too long to ask for medication. I’m sure your doctor will not be pleased to hear this,” the nurse admonished.
Oh… my… god! I’m mortified. Trying to stay with the cover story, Annie responded, “Yeah, I realize that now. I let it go too long. Now it really hurts. I’m sorry you heard me moaning.”
“No worries, dear. Let’s get you some relief and settled back to sleep. I’ll be right back.” The nurse walked out of the room. Annie was beyond grateful that one, she was in a private room and, two, the nurse thought her moans were due to pain. If she really knew, she’d call for a psych consult, I am sure.
* * *
Thomas strode into the hospital with a light, quick step and a smile on his face. He was going to see his new favorite patient this morning and felt nervous excitement at the prospect. His good mood was deflated rather quickly, however, when he reviewed the night nursing notes. Apparently, Ms. O’Reilly had been heard moaning in her room. When the nurse checked on her, she reported being in pain. Given medication to alleviate it, she slept the remainder of the night. Thomas was extremely troubled and perturbed. Especially after lecturing her before he left yesterday. He insisted on the importance of communicating her pain levels. His displeasure that she did not comply with his demand made him want to take her over his knee. Of course, he knew that was an irrational thought. He abhorred the idea of Ms. O’Reilly being in any discomfort even though he also desired to spank her ass red for her disobedience.
Walking into her room, Thomas was immediately concerned. Sitting in the industrial brown upholstered chair, Annie looked downtrodden and distressed. By her facial expression, Thomas inferred that she was in pain again and this angered him. It made his blood boil that she was so non-compliant with his instructions. Recognizing the need to rein in his anger and angst, Thomas addressed her in his usual professional manner, but it had an edge. “Ms. O’Reilly, are you alright? You appear to be in some discomfort. Is your medication not working?” His head cocked to the side, waiting for her response.
“Yes, Doctor, I’m fine. The medication is doing its job. Really… I’m… fine.”
Thomas huffed, annoyed at her generic response. “Well, you don’t look fine to me; in fact, when most women use the word ‘fine,’ it almost always means ‘not fine.’ When I entered the room, your facial expression conveyed discomfort. If you are experiencing pain, you need to tell me. I’d like a truthful answer, Ms. O’Reilly.”
Annie paused for a moment before responding. “Well, Dr. Callahan… you see… I am fine. Really. At least physically I am fine.” She shrugged her shoulders. “I guess you caught me in a moment of self-pity.” She blushed. “The discomfort you saw was related more to my appearance. I was wallowing in my own misery. I think everything has finally caught up to me. I want to get back to normal. Take a long hot shower, sleep in my own bed, and wear my own pajamas. You found me at the most inopportune moment, I’m afraid. I was just in the bathroom trying to make my rat’s-nest hair look presentable and,” she waved her hand, “as you can see, I was unsuccessful. To sum it all up, the past few days have really sucked and I feel crappy and unattractive. So there you have it, Doc. You walked in on and witnessed my pity party,” she quipped.
Thomas felt the frustration dissipate and was entertained and enthralled by her adorable rant. He found her honesty refreshing and appreciated how intelligent and well-spoken she was. She was charming and witty. He was relieved to know that he was mistaken and his mood lightened instantly. In an uncharacteristic move, he sat down on the bed beside Annie as she sat in the chair. Leaning over, he patted her hand and smiled.
“I have to say, I’m glad that you’re ‘fine’ physically, Ms. O’Reilly.” He emphasized the word ‘fine.’ “I am sorry, however, that you are feeling so low. It is perfectly understandable though, given all that you have been through over the past few days. It’s normal to feel overwhelmed by your recent experience. And you,” he added, “are far from unattractive. Nothing can detract from your natural beauty.” His voice sounded more seductive than he intended, knowing it was bordering on the fine line of appropriate doctor conduct with a patient.
Annie’s face was stained crimson. “Dr. Callahan, how is it that you always manage to say just the right thing at just the right moment? You have quite the bedside manner.” Annie softly laughed. “I’m sure it makes you popular with all of your patients.”
“Well, Ms. O’Reilly, having a good bedside manner is imperative in my profession, as you can well imagine. I also believe you seem to bring out my more articulate side. I stand by my words. Even with illness, your beauty shines through. I cannot tell you how much it pleases me to see that lovely smile on your face, which only enhances your beauty more,” Thomas continued. “I’m also happy to tell you that you are recovering quite well and I see no reason why you cannot go home today. I imagine that news in and of itself would make you feel much better, no?”
Her body vibrated with excitement. “Yes, that does make me feel much better. That’s the best news ever. Thank you, Doctor. I will be so glad to get out of this place and back home to my familiar surroundings.” Thomas could hear the animated joy in her voice.
Thomas informed her, “Of course, I will need to see you for a follow-up appointment in a week’s time. Your stitches will dissolve but I will need to examine the incision sites to ensure there is no sign of infection and they are healing properly. My office is located in the adjacent medical building.” He motioned his hand vaguely to the right, indicating the general direction and proximity. Ironically, Thomas needed to speak that reassurance for himself as much for her. He wanted to see Annie again and the necessity for a follow-up appointment, a standard requirement for surgical patients, was the perfect excuse.
* * *
Annie sat in Dr. Callahan’s waiting room with nervous anticipation. She had checked in with the receptionist over twenty-five minutes ago. Normally, she absolutely hated when her time was wasted, but today, her nervous anticipation made the minutes fly by and nothing could kill her good mood. Her 5:15 p.m. appointment with Dr. Callahan was the highlight of her day. Really, it was the highlight of her week. She was required to have this follow-up appointment in order to get clearance to go back to work. She looked forward to going back. She missed her clients and co-workers. In many ways, they were her family. However, there was another reason she anxiously awaited the appointment. She shivered at the thought of seeing him again. That tall, magnificent Adonis. Annie’s thoughts wandered to the picture she had of him in her mind during their encounter at the hospital. He walked with an air of authority and confidence that she found so attractive. It certainly doesn’t hurt that he’s so sexy too. Not to mention that erotic spanking dream. It was a fantasy that Annie would conjure again and again when she needed to relieve some sexual tension.
Earlier in the day, in anticipation of the visit, Annie had gone through her closet trying to decide what to wear. She had told herself she was not trying to impress anyone. At least that is what she had tried to believe. Truth be told, Annie wanted to make a good impression on Dr. Callahan. She was very attracted to him. Just the thought of him wearing his scrubs and stethoscope were enough to dampen her panties. When in his presence, Annie felt like she regressed to a silly schoolgirl unable to put a coherent sentence together to save her life. There was just something about him. His assured manner and commanding presence turned her on. Annie could not remember the last time she was so smitten with a man.
Ultimately, Annie had decided to dress for comfort. She wore her favorite well-worn jeans. They were a bit faded but soft from years of wash and wear. Annie also chose a simple white button-down blouse untucked, with flat sandals. They were clothes that made her feel good, most like herself. She spent more time than usual styling her hair. She also put on some blush and lip gloss, a task usually reserved for special nights out.
Despite being an independent, career-focused woman, Annie often thought about what it would be like to have a strong, dominant man in her life and in her bed. She desired a man who would take charge, yet at the same time, would take care of her. A man who would care about her. All of those erotic romance novels made her think about her desires and the type of man she found most appealing. Her preference was always the take-charge alpha male who would love, revere, and protect his heroine, but would also take her in hand and discipline her. Annie dreamed about blissfully surrendering on her knees, breathless with desire for his firm, yet tender, intimate touch. He would be possessive and demanding with a piercing gaze that would cause her to squirm with anticipation and arousal. Dr. Callahan could have easily walked off the pages of Annie’s favorite erotic romances. With his distinguished good looks and natural confidence, she could fall for a man like him. More specifically, she was falling for him.
Annie looked impatiently at her watch again. Taking a deep, calming breath, she glanced around the waiting room, empty except for her. The décor was impressive, appearing to have been done by a professional interior decorator. The walls were a sage green and several large framed paintings of flowers arranged in vases were evenly spaced around the room. The waiting-room chairs were not the industrial faux leather found in most doctors’ offices. Rather, the upholstered chairs had sturdy armrests in a dark brown oak stain. The fabric was in a floral print that complemented the wall art perfectly. Each side table next to the chairs had neatly stacked magazines. It was an inviting environment meant to put patients at ease. Though Annie was anything but at ease as the minutes ticked by.
As she continued to take in her surroundings, a skinny woman wearing pink scrubs appeared and announced Annie’s name. Finally. Annie stood up and followed the blond woman down the hallway to the exam room.