Just then, a pot-bellied middle-aged man walked up to the duo. “Who’s this with you, Mr. Damaris?” Upon hearing that, Jack stood up to greet the man and make the introductions. “This is Dr. Roxanne Jarvis. Roxanne, meet Terence Canfield, the new person in charge of this nursing home.”
Roxanne smiled and greeted Terence cordially. “So this is the renowned Dr. Jarvis?” Terence exclaimed while sizing the woman up. “People have raved about your beauty and talent, but I never thought you’d be this drop-dead gorgeous! To top it all off, you have a heart of gold too! The old folks have nothing but praise and admiration for you!”
“I’m nowhere as kind as you, Mr. Canfield,” Roxanne said smilingly. “If you hadn’t taken over the nursing home, who knows what’d happen to these old folks?”
In response, Terence chuckled politely. “Oh, it’s nothing to write home about. By the way, it’s getting late. Do you guys have any plans for the evening? If you don’t, why not stay and have dinner together? It’d be a good opportunity for me to thank you on behalf of our residents.”
Roxanne frowned and was about to turn Terence down when Jack’s voice rang out. “Sounds good! Besides, I wanted to ask you about the old folks’ follow-up treatments,” he remarked before turning to Roxanne for her opinion. “I’m not sure if Ms. Jarvis has any plans for the night, though. If she does, I’d need to trouble you to make arrangements for transportation to send her back, Mr. Canfield.”
Naturally, Roxanne didn’t want to trouble Terence, and since she was also concerned about the follow-up care, she decided to go along with the men..
“Let’s have dinner together, then. I’d love to learn more about the old folks’ follow-up treatments too.” With that, Terence led them to a restaurant near the nursing home. Since he had already made a reservation, one of the servers promptly ushered them into at private room and served their food.
“Here’s a toast to you, Mr. Damaris and Dr. Jarvis!” Terence said as he raised his glass and regarded his guests with awe. “Well, I’m sure you’ve seen the current state of the nursing home. We’re happy to provide financial support, yet there still aren’t any medical organizations willing to help us out. They think our elderly residents have a high mortality rate, so they don’t want to ruin their reputation by collaborating with us. You two are the only ones who immediately agreed to provide medical consultation!”
After exchanging glances, Roxanne and Jack stood up. “We’re only doing our jobs as doctors,” the latter replied pleasantly. “You, on the other hand, ought to be applauded for your incredible generosity. It’s clear to see that the nursing home is in shambles, yet you were still kind enough to take it over. You have our utmost respect!”
Roxanne nodded and chimed in, “Indeed. If it weren’t for your support, we might not even have gotten this opportunity to provide medical consultation.”
Given that the three of them were equally enthusiastic about the nursing home, it wasn’t long before they settled into a lively and comfortable conversation.
Even though their discussion was about the nursing home’s future, Terence, who was used to business entertaining, couldn’t stop offering drinks to Jack and Roxanne..
Not wanting to reject the man’s polite gesture, the duo went with the flow, so much so that Roxanne started feeling a buzz from all the alcohol.
Halfway through the dinner, several family members of the old folks suddenly showed up with bags of thank-you gifts, which prompted even more rounds of speeches and toasts.
Many of those people had no choice but to send their elderly parents to the nursing home because they couldn’t afford the hefty medical expenses.
Therefore, they were all filled with immense gratitude after knowing that Roxanne and Jack had treated the old folks without charging a single cent. How, then, could Roxanne not accept their heartfelt toasts?
Eventually, she lost count of how many glasses of wine she had drunk, though she was acutely aware that her head felt heavy and her motor responses were becoming sluggish.