"I'm not a fan of these," Dr. Todd Herring said, holding a bottle of beer. His tie was loose around his neck, white button up dress shirt was only half tucked into his black tux pants. He and Dr. Will Capilla stood in a corner of the San Diego Community Center's event room, watching new interns from every service mingle, watching their co-workers converse politely, all dressed up. And for what? To meet the interns they'd be yelling at tomorrow, but hey, maybe they'd be fooled into thinking their bosses were half decent people.
"I know," Will took a sip from his own bottle, he was wearing a similar tux, except he still had his shirt tucked in and tie on correctly. His lean, athletic frame leaned against the wall, head angled toward the high ceiling. Will smirked at the cheap Party City streamer hanging in all directions. He looked from Todd to the rest of the room, chocolate brown eyes sparkling. "Look at the bright side," Will laughed, tipping his head back, "they aren't making us dance awkwardly."
"So," Todd began, running his large hand through his dirty blonde, scruffy hair, "it's just like prom, but without the awkward dancing and crying at the end because we all think this is the last time we'll have fun."
"Exactly, except the interns might not have fun again," Will smiled. Will was a genuine hot shot at San Diego Hale Hospital. He was the head of neurosurgery, which he came upon by working his ass off for the past nine years. His superiors had been amazed by his quick progress and ability to learn. All the attention and admiration had made him very cocky though. He was use to getting what - and who - ever he wanted.
"Good," Todd replied. He was just as old as Will, they went to college together, but he wasn't nearly as quick to learn as Will, making him a regular attending. He was attractive, like Will, they had been voted Senior and Junior "Campus Hotties" at the University of Southern California. "I think they deserve just as much hell as we did."
Over in another corner, opposite of Will and Todd's was Caitlin and Sarah, both hopeful surgical interns. Sarah sipped champagne, looking colorful in her strapless pink bubble dress. "This is kind of awkward," Sarah began, "no one is talking to the residents and attendings. Like all the interns are scared shitless."
Caitlin laughed, looking sophisticated in her short black dress, with the plunging neckline and all. "Well, I'll be honest. I am. They look kinda intimidating. Like they're better than us."
One of the future interns sitting at the round table in front of them turned around in his chair. "They are better than us," he said bluntly.
Caitlin gaped while Sarah scoffed. "Not as people, which is what we are tonight, dumbass." The man stood up, he was about a foot taller than Sarah and Caitlin, his dark brown hair was slickly combed back, olive green eyes glaring at Sarah. Apparently no one had the balls to talk to him like that usually.
Sarah met his glare, not giving in. Caitlin took this opportunity to walk out before a fight broke loose. She chose to sit next to the wall on the opposite side of the room. All a sudden a man with messy curly blonde hair sat down next to Caitlin.
"Dr. Todd Herring," he smiled, his pearly white teeth shining, "third year surgical attending." He held out his hand, the cuffs on his shirt were messy.
Caitlin politely shook his hand. "Caitlin Lease," she said, trying to match the same level of coolness as Todd, "intern."
Todd raised his eyebrows, "Oh, really? What service?"
"Surgery," Caitlin flashed a smile, sitting back in the chair with her arms crossed. This party could not be over soon enough.
"This party can't be over soon enough," Caitlin heard a smooth, velvet voice repeat her exact thought. "What do we have here?"
Todd turned his head around, then looking up at an attractive man with the brown eyes. "Found a surgical intern, Will," Todd smiled proudly.
"Ah, they do exist," Will didn't sit down, he looked at Caitlin, not really registering her presence. "I'm leaving, and I'm your ride, so you're leaving."
Todd nodded, standing up, he took another look at the buffet table, and turned towards Will. "I guess I'll see you tomorrow," he smiled, let his eyes wander around Caitlin's chest for a moment before he walked away with Will. Sarah suddenly appeared in the chair across from Caitlin, a grin on her face.
"Success?" Caitlin asked, eyes still following the Will as he walked out the door, a cocky smile on his face as he caught Caitlin's eye.
"You could say that," Sarah said, reapplying her lip stick. "He backed down, after a full on debate." Caitlin rolled her eyes. "What?"
"You don't always need to be right," Caitlin said playfully.
"Yes, yes I do, because we're surgeons. It's out job to be right," Sarah winked.
"Not surgeons yet," Caitlin reminded her, letting one of her strappy black heels hang from her toes.
"Might as well be," Sarah replied in the same reminding tone as Caitlin's. She looked back at the door. "Who were they?" Her eyebrows raised in interest.
"Attendings, one was Dr. Todd Herring, and the other one was Will-"
"Will...?" Sarah asked, looking for a last name. She put her lip stick back in her clutch, glancing at her sterling silver watch, waiting for eleven to come.
"I never got a last name," Caitlin said. She smirked at the memory. "He wasn't really all over introducing himself."
"Sounds like a cocky asshole," Sarah smiled, then looked at her shoes thoughtfully.
Caitlin spent the rest of the night, and early morning, on the beach, she watched the waves roll onto the shore. She hugged her knees to her chest, thinking. Thinking about tomorrow, she'd be a surgical intern, finally beginning the dream she'd worked her entire life for. She tried to stay focused on that. That positive, but her mind kept drifting to Matt.
She gazed at her empty ring finger. It suddenly felt so light. Like she was missing something. Was she? Caitlin heaved a sigh, how long would this go on for? She couldn't go back to Matt, just couldn't, it wasn't worth it.
Besides, even if she did go back, there was no guarantee he'd never cheat on her again. She couldn't trust him anymore. Aside from her parents, she didn't know who to trust. Caitlin winced, feeling a breeze weave through her hair. Her parents. She still hadn't told them. They adored Matt. They were so proud of Caitlin, her mom was so excited for the wedding. She was planning it.
Damn it, Caitlin thought. Now all that work she had already done was for nothing. Damnit, Matt, Caitlin thought again.
She jumped as she felt her cell phone vibrate, Sarah's number appeared on the screen.
"Yeah?" Caitlin answered, her eyes at the horizon.
"Are you going to get some sleep before tomorrow?" she heard a laugh in Sarah's voice. Oh yeah, Caitlin thought, sleep.
"I'll be there in a few minutes," and she hung up the phone. Her bare feet slid into the sand as she stood up.
I can do this, Caitlin told herself, this is my future. I'll cross the other bridges later. Right now, tomorrow is what matters. Nothing else.