The Mind Reader (2015)
For the rest of the morning, Chara’s own thoughts mixed with the ones of her patients bounced around her head like ping pong balls. It was getting loud in there with all of that activity going on.
Her thoughts at least kept settling on two men: handsome Dr. Renault and billionaire – rather former billionaire – Ted Langley.
She was drawn back to Dr. Renault because one, he thought with a French accent. How cool was that? Okay, how sexy was that? And two, he seemed to be conflicted about how he wanted to approach her. Professional only relationship or a personal one?
Chara finally admitted to herself that such a handsome even considered a personal relationship with her sent shivers down her spine. Most men just blew her off. It’s not that she wasn’t good looking, she had always tried to reassure herself. She just wasn’t movie star good looking.
She was a bit shorter than most men liked. She was barely five-foot five inches, men liked the women with longer legs. Men also liked women who were a bit thinner than she was. While Chara didn’t carry that much extra weight, no one ever accused her of being anorexic. One of the men she dated actually said he appreciated her “love handles,” those ripples of extra weight around her hips.
Chara knew that he meant it as a compliment (because she could read his mind) but she took it as a backhanded compliment.
Then there was Langley, the patient who revealed nothing about his thoughts. She wasn’t sure why. Was it his current health condition? Or had I met him prior to his illness would I still be unable to read him? Lots and lots of questions. No answers. Chara wasn’t accustomed to not having the answers regarding these types of questions.
Yet, she was strangely and inexplicably sexually attracted to him.
Chara headed back to the nurse’s station as her lunch break approached. She had finished her rounds, checked in several times with those patients who had the most needs and was mentally preparing herself for a lunch with Dr. Renault. She knew for a fact that he was going to inquire about the status of other patients.
As she passed Langley’s room, she heard him call her name. She stopped and stuck her head in. “Wow,” she said in astonishment, “you’re sitting up. When I was in here earlier it appeared that you’d never sit up without a threat.”
Once again her first impression of the room was its utter silence. She still couldn’t pick up on any of his thoughts. She had no idea what this man was thinking. Except when she was at home alone did she ever experience such silence. This is weird, she thought.
She did notice a big difference in the energy of the room, though. Instead of the negative energy that permeated it earlier, the room was a bit brighter. As she studied, Langley a bit closer, she also observed that his nearly black hair, previously disheveled, was now neatly combed. These observations alone brightened Chara’s day and she had yet to speak with him.
“I was thinking about what you said,” Langley said, “and the word selfish came to mind. I had been so fortunate for so long. It’s time I decided just to snap out of it. If I could make millions of dollars once out of practically nothing I could do it again. In fact, it should even be easier – I learned many valuable lessons the first time around that I could make good use of this time. Which means I could recoup my fortunate and then some even faster.”
Chara knew she was probably running late for lunch with the handsome hunk of a doctor, but she had to stop and celebrate this joyful moment with her patient. The good doctor, being the good doctor he was, would know that a nurse sometimes is late for lunch. At least good nurses are.
Chara sat on the edge of his bed. “I also decided that if I found one good woman out there – Well, I thought she was a good woman—I can find another one to love me for who I am and not my money.”
He paused a beat. “I’m so pleased you’ve made those decisions,” Chara said with sincerity. “It’s good to see you sitting up and to hear you talking about a future.”
“I’m sure you’re busy and I won’t take up any more of your time right now,” Langley confided.
“Just on my way to lunch,” Chara responded quickly.
“I’m sorry. You’re on way to an important part of your day,” he said. “It’s probably the only time in your workday you get to relax.”
“Actually it’s a working lunch today,” she replied quickly, not knowing why she felt the need to confess that to this man. It was something about his eyes, though, those bright blue beautiful eyes that drew that information out of her.
“If you have time after lunch,” he suggested, “I would love for you to stop by for a few minutes so we can talk a bit. Would you mind?”
“I would love it,” the nurse said, “that’s what I’m here for. I’ll check in right after I’m done with lunch.”
“Only if you have the time, remember.”
“If talking provides you with a remarkable recovery in such short of a time,” Chara said, “I’ll make our conversations a priority.”
“You’re too kind,” he replied.
Chara walked out of that room a bit taller. It amazed her at how that small conversation she had with Langley earlier had influenced him. Could the fact she wasn’t able to read his thoughts make her more amazed than usual over the recovery of a patient? Probably, she decided.
She always knew right before some event like that happened (and yes, his sitting up was an event!) because she always heard the patient finalize the decision in his head first. So this is what it is to be “normal” she thought. She would have to check with her mom. Her mom always explained very patiently how individuals without the gift experienced the world.
“He’s growing increasingly good looking,” she said to herself, “now that he’s feeling better about himself.” Stop that type of thinking, she scolded herself.