Before long, the male nurse started to take a liking for Old Mowgli, and was always there to look after him on his shifts. On his off days, though, Betty had to undertake the unpleasant task of attending to the dirty old man, for she was new to the hospital and was inclined to being taken advantage of.
This day, Betty was on the night shift and was just stepping into the ward, tucking in her uniform, when she saw in surprise a woman sitting beside Old Mowgli. This dark, stout woman, her toned limbs showing under her floral cheongsam, was looking at the sleeping old man with the tenderness of a concerned daughter. Betty had always assumed that Old Mowgli was alone in this world, and was naturally surprised to find such a visitor.
The male nurse walked up to her sharing the same thoughts, and exchanged looks.
‘Who do you think she is?’
‘Her daughter, I suppose.’
‘I think it’s his lover.’
‘Nonsense. He’s too old for her. Plus that’s a daughter’s look.’
‘Really? I still think she’s a lover. Which explains his abnormal vigor down there.’
Betty glanced at the male nurse in annoyance. ‘You’re another dirty one. That’s why you’re a perfect fit for each other. Go ahead and watch over your best friend, I am going to take a look at Bed 23.’
At this point, the woman stood up and looked at them. ‘Excuse me – ‘
A look of hesitation flashed across her face, before being overtaken by a placidity that marked the tanned, worn face. Betty and the male nurse looked on in curious anticipation.
‘May I know the name of this patient?’