Unedited Draft: WARNING: Intended for Mature audience

| Damsel's Tattooed Temptation 
CHAPTER 3: The Elephant in the Room |

Corpus callosum - part of the brain which consists of 200 million axons. Damsel scratched her head. What were axons again? She flipped to the index of the large heavy volume sitting on her lap and scanned the “a’s” for her vocab word. Then turned to the referenced page. Oh yes!  A projection of a nerve cell, or neuron, that is long and slender whose function is to typically conducts electrical… Damsel squinted when the sun slipped from behind the building across the street and reflected off the white pages of her book.

She stretched and yawned as she placed the book next to her on the paper littered couch. She pushed off the sofa and walked carefully to the kitchen her numb legs tingling as blood finally started running down their length.

She had trouble sleeping the night before all she could think about was her troublesome patient. There was no denying the boy was fine as hell even in his state.

At about four in the morning she got out of bed, took a shower, and got her first cup of tea. She had to keep herself busy so she started studying. She filled her tea pot up with water and placed it on the stove her mind wandering to her dreams haunted by a sexy smile and nice toned glutes.

Damsel shook the thought. “Pull yourself together Damsel Kane!” She was acting like she’d never run into men like James before. They were a dime a dozen. True, they never distracted her like he did but she was sure it was just a phase.

She’d been so focused on school and now this exam that she was in desperate need of some down time. She’d have a few days off soon. She was planning on using that time to study but… given the most recent events she should make time for fun too. She got dressed, made her usual eggs, Greek yogurt, and toast with a cup of tea and read the newspaper.

It was another double today which she wasn't complaining about it kept her busy kept her focused. Damsel glanced up at the microwave clock. She had this strange sense of dread and excitement heading to work. It was an unwelcome feeling considering she loved what she did and where she worked.  

Damsel inhaled that hospital smell like she did everyday. The cool feeling of air conditioning shaking her tired mind. She grabbed her assignments for the day and headed to her first one: Old Lady Gatsby. The nurses called her that because she would tell far fetched stories about great parties she would attend, the dresses, the roguish carefree life she lived.

After Old Lady Gatsby she had a laundry list of other tasks she took on as trades to avoid James. Like he promised he was I  his best behavior according to the other nurses.

This is good for you Damsel. You know he's trouble. She told herself while filing out additional bits of paperwork, filing, ordering more supplies for their wing.

"Damsel!" Damsel looked up from her patient chart jotting down a couple other notes she didn't get down in the room. She was limping to the finish line her double was coming to an end finally! She exhaled the day's exhaustion settling in. When were they hiring another nurse again? Cammie waved her over. Cammie and a couple other nurses were gathered around something that was on Cammie's phone. They were like hens in a hen house giggling and whispering.

"What is it Cam? I'm getting ready to head home." Damsel leaned on the counter facing the other girls.

"Come around and see I promise it'll be worth it."

"Caaamm." Damsel whined massaging her neck as she made her way around the nurses station counter. Cammie turned in the chair to face Damsel a mischievous glint in her caramel brown eyes. The other nurses were looking at Damsel with the same mischievous look. "Come now children speed it along I have things to do. Sleep to catch up on, an exam to study f-..."
Damsel broke off when Cammie turned her phone screen toward Damsel.

Damsel's mouth fell open as her headache of a patient sexy Mr. Stevenson was buck naked cock in hand stroking himself. An over made up blond woman in front of him on her knees. Damsel clapped her hands over her face. "What the hell! You girls-!" She peeked through her fingers not because she wanted to see but because her curiosity wouldn't allow her not to look.

James's head fell back when the blonde took his penis in her mouth. He held her hair behind her head the camera zooming in. Damsel could feel the heat as the nurses around her started laughing and teasing her.

Cammie spoke loud over the noise her light skin turning flush with her amusement. "If he asks you out I approve."

"That boy is hung." Demetria shouted covering her open mouthed laugh making a hand motion with her arm dangling between her legs. While another nurse made elephant noises.

"Shit he’s is fine. If you don't trace every one of them tats with your tongue, I will." Demetria smacked Monet on the arm as they snickered with each other.

Damsel made her way to the safe zone on the other side of the counter waving them all off.

"Where are you running off to?" Cammie inquired over the commotion. "Your sexy trouble maker needs final check off before you hightail it out of here."

Damsel slumped her shoulders. She'd been trying to avoid him all day and had been doing a good job with it taking the duties that no one wanted so they agreed to check on him. "Cam I asked you to."

"I can’t be bought dear one. Besides, I have never seen you run from anything in all my ten plus years of knowing you. Go face your fears girl."

After determining that Cammie wasn't going to budge, Damsel moped like a young child and headed towards the lion’s den. Her mind flashed to his naked body adorned in ink. That look in his eyes when that woman... Damsel shivered forcing her mind to become clear, focused. She knocked gently on the door hearing male laughter on the other side.

"Enter if you dare." An unfamiliar male voice said with a chuckle.

Damsel peaked around the corner. "I didn't know you had company I'll come back-"

"No, no, no don't let little ole me get in the way." The man stood up and approached Damsel. "You must be nurse Kane. This punk hasn't been speaking of anything else." James shook his head and rubbed his hand down his face. The stranger took Damsel’s hand in his and pressed a kiss to her knuckles eliciting a growl from James. The man laughed back at his friend and motioned for Damsel to enter. She made her entrance quick started to work right away while the two men watched her. "Seems like you've been the one giving hero a hard time in my stead.

Damsel threw a tight smile at the man determined not to stare at James. “Someone had to keep him in line.” It was difficult but she’d manage it. She was being dramatic! This couldn’t be as hard as she was making it out. She threw out some old flowers watered some new plants. There was a small forest developing on the window ledge.

James's friend started talking to James as if Damsel wasn't there. “You give Rob’s proposal any thought?”

James exhaled and rubbed his forehead with the palm of his hand. “He’s got you after me too?”

“No. I’m after you because it’s a good opportunity and I’m not sure why you’re hesitating. This is the next step man what the hell are you waiting for?”

Damsel was curious what exactly they were talking about even though she shouldn’t be. She shouldn’t care. In a couple days James would resume his life as it were and she’d be back to not being terrified to venture into a part of her hospital.

She should have been thinking about what she was going to eat for dinner, the order of things she was going to do when she got home so she could get to bed as soon as possible.

“Got damn! Can I get out the fuckin’ hospital first?”

“I know you man. You like fuckin’ up good shit. A movie score is a huge step. Do you know how many guys like you get an opportunity like this?”

“I know, I know Will damn.”

“He’s handing it to you on a silver fucking platter and you’re thinking it over! I swear I don’t understand you sometimes.”

Damsel opened the blinds now that the afternoon sun was out and shining on this side of the building. She cursed under her breath mentally preparing herself for the tasks she had to do at James's bed side. He was watching her intently while his friend launched into another topic. She checked his drip, replaced the bag, made a mental note to start him on a different drip the next day. Damsel adjusted the sheets at the foot of his bed  proud at how good of a job she was doing at keeping her mind busy.

“You know Roger expects you to be there, right?” The man continued.

James’s well crafted eyebrows pulled together. “Fuck Roger man. I’m not messin’ with him right now.”

The friend laughed. “Yeah, I don’t blame you.”

Damsel's breath caught when James grabbed her wrist and gently ran his thumb along the back of her hand. A shiver ran through her entire body and that vibrating feeling rested between her legs. Damsel met two beautiful hazel green eyes and furrowed eyebrows that slowly loosened. His  flat wide lips pulled into a lopsided smile.

"Hey beautiful." James whispered.

His friend trailed off. As Damsel and James stared into each other for a length of time that was inappropriate. Damsel wasn’t sure if James knew how to be appropriate. She wasn’t sure if he even knew the word existed.

A quick knock on the door  followed by her name. Made Damsel snap out of her trance. She snatched her hand from James's meeting Cammie's knowing carmel eyes. She glanced at James, smiled, cleared her throat and said, "Doctor Greggs wants to speak to you before you leave."

Damsel sighed letting her head roll back. Completely unprofessional she knew but Jesus Christ Almighty it had already been a long day and she just wanted to go to bed and dream about James. She winced at the thought.

James's friend stood up a mischievous smile reaching his eyes. "William Thompson and you are Nurse-" He took Cammie's hand in his gazing at her expectantly.

She smirked. "Cammie." Her eyes danced with intrigue before she retrieved her hand and backed up toward the door. "Nice to meet you William. Damsel make sure you punch your time card before you leave." Cammie disappeared around the corner near the door where only Damsel was in her view and hung her arm between her legs and mouthed elephant noises before scurrying from the room.

Damsel made another note to kill her friend.

"Will can you give nurse Kane and me a minute?"

Damsel took a deep breath and met James's eyes. "I really should be heading out."

"It won't take long. I know you're tired sweetheart."

William looked from James to Damsel then back again and bowed out the room a silly smile on his face. “Nurse Cammie never told me her last name so I’m going to go get that.”

"Come to me Damsel." James patted on the bed next to him when Will closed the door behind him.

Damsel ran her hands down her pants and ventured closer to the devilishly handsome man but refused to sit. There had to be a line,  right?

"You wouldn't be avoiding me today now would you?" James asked sitting up in the reclined bed.

Damsel frowned crossing her arms. "Of course not don't be ridiculous." She lied.

"Liar." He looked down at his hands steepled in front of him then back up to her from under his lashes. "What's the deal with you and Doctor Greggs? He's a dick."

Damsel exhaled suddenly annoyed at the reminder that she had to waste precious time going to see that man. She nodded adjusting the blankets tucking them around James. She needed to keep her hands busy or she would touch him in a way that was most definitely inappropriate. "That’s what I get for dating a co-worker especially a superior." Damsel laughed uncomfortably not finding humor in what she said just trying to make the disaster that was her relationship with Dr. Greggs seem less catastrophic.

"Got damn." James said scratching his head.

Damsel glanced up at James. He was so close with the way she was leaning over him to readjust his blanket. He smelled like shampoo. She just noticed his hair was still damp from a shower. “Your friend,” Damsel cleared her throat plumping his pillow slowly. “You two were talking about a job or something? You’re a musician?”

James smiled up at her. “Curious little kitten.”

Damsel ignored the heat that was rising to her cheeks.

“Yeah. A movie producer that I’ve worked with in the past wants me to do a music score for a feature film he’s working on.”

Damsel’s eyebrows raised. “That’s impressive. Sounds like a really good opportunity.”

“Mhm. It is.”

“So…?” Damsel paused until he looked at her. “What’s holding you back?”

He frowned looking at his tattooed hands in his lap. “I don’t know.” He shrugged.

“You should go for it.”

James found her eyes and searched them intensely for an extended period of time before he smirked. “You’re a go getter aren’t you?”

She shrugged.

“Ain’t no need to be modest. I hear the other nurses talking about you, Doctor Kane.”

Damsel glanced up to meet his smiling eyes. “Honestly, just going after what I should have to start with. When I want something there’s no stopping me.”

James smiled. “Yeah, I like that.”

Damsel’s face started to heat as she kept working feeling his gaze on her. She was talking too much sharing way too much.

"So, that dick doctor, is he the type of dude you see yourself with?"

Damsel met James's eyes briefly before bringing her gaze to the covers her hands were tucking mindlessly for a few moments while she gained her thoughts. She couldn't think straight when she was looking into those eyes. When she got her thoughts together she met his eyes again. "He's the type of man that comes home for sunday dinners, wants a white picket fence and one and a half kids."

James frowned. "And you're so sure I'm not?"

Damsel raised one eyebrow and cocked her head to the side. "Uh, yes. I’m sure you’re not."

James smirked. "Okay, I’m not going to lie, I hate picket fences I think their ugly as hell." James cupped Damsel's smiling cheek. She knew she shouldn't have but she closed her eyes and exhaled pressing her cheek into his hand. "But there has to be more to life than someone else's American dream."

That was beside the point. The point was Damsel had too many things going on and this thing, this infatuation with James Stevenson had no place in her busy life. She didn’t have time for trouble. She barely had time for the the important things that would eventually pay off for her.

"What happened between Doctor Greggs and I was a regrettable mistake, but I won't cross that line again." Damsel pulled herself up to standing, breathed deep, and headed to the door. She glanced over her shoulder at James, his focus on the sheets his eyebrows furrowed, his mind racing deep in thought.

Damsel smiled he was so handsome in his state of thought and concern. Once in the hall, she cleared her mind and the feeling that coursed through her body whenever James touched her or said her name or she heard his name and she headed towards her ex’s office.

Truth was they were too different. She had no place in his wild and reckless life. Pornstar, musician, excessive drinking and drugs no doubt. That's not what she wanted in a partner.


Damsel knocked on the door to Dr. Gregg's stuffy office before pushing the cracked door open and peaking in. "You wanted to see me?"

Dr. Greggs looked up from what he was reading his glasses resting down at the tip of his nose. "Ah yes Damsel please come in shut the door would you."

Damsel groaned in her head. What could he have to say to her that needed the door closed. She certainly hoped he wasn't up to his old tricks trying to get back in her life because that was the farthest thing from what was going to happen if he thought that he was deluded for sure.
Dr. Greggs removed his glasses and set back in his chair offering Damsel the chair across from him.

"I'll stand thank you." She wasn't planning on being in there long.

"Anything to drink?"

Damsel pinched the bridge of her nose. "I don't mean to rush you Dr. Greggs but..."

"So formal?"

"I worked a double so I'm really trying to get out of her so I can rest up for my shift tonight." Damsel ignored his words.

"Right, well I heard you were taking the exam to obtain your medical license."

GOt damn it how the hell did he find out? Damsel smiled folding her arms across her chest. "That's right."

"Well I didn't even know you were in school. Were you purposefully keeping it from me?"

Yes

"No, I just didn't think it was any of your business."

Dr Greggs cleared his throat. “Well, I wanted you to know that I’m here for support. If you need anything don’t hesitate.”

Damsel nodded pushing herself up to standing. Dr Greggs grabbed her hand his long limbs reaching across the breadth of the desk. She forgot how tall he was how long his limbs. He met her eyes his warm. “I want you to know that I’m always here for you Damsel.”

Damsel presented a toothless smile pulling her hand from his grasp. “I appreciate your support Doctor. Have a good afternoon.” Without a glance back Damsel scurried from his office desperate for a hot shower, meal, and her bed.
Continue to Part 4...