The Good Doctor

Submitted into Contest #116 in response to: Write a story that centers around a parking permit.... view prompt


Drama Contemporary Funny


The digital display on David’s dashboard said 5:43am. He smiled as he pulled into the small parking lot of Paediatric Cardiology Associates on Swan Ave. He veered the car to the left and onto the parking space right under the large cypress tree. Prime real estate. His plan worked perfectly, coming in early did the trick. He wasn’t about to waste his breathe arguing with that fossil. Old things should die and make way for youth. Looking in the rear-view mirror, he straightened his green striped tie and checked his reflection. Green complimented his eyes well. There was a pep in his step as he entered the office, his shiny Italian loafers making a distinct sound as they met the freshly cleaned tiled floors. He had no patients till 7:15am but arriving early was a small price to pay for a victory that tasted this sweet.

Dr. Veer Patel, slammed his car door hard as he saw that Dr. Greer, had parked in HIS spot again. The paint in the slot was clearly demarked for HIM! This was his fourth month at the office and he was already more insufferable than words could express. He felt he didn’t stand up for himself, that boy would steamroll him. That blasted Dr. Greer! And he had got there early too to secure his spot- it was 6:18am. The spot he was parked in now would soon be lit on fire by the scorching sun that often felt like it was two inches from kissing the asphalt on a daily basis. Last week, the candy he was bringing home for his grandkids had melted to sugary soup in their wrappers. The week before he had to the scrap pigeon poop off that had decorated his windshield in the shape of some flower. This was not fair. He would have to complain, AGAIN, to the CEO of the medical center. For what good that would do for him. He steadied his breath and tried to calm himself. He pasted a smile on his face before entering the cold office. He smiled at the medical assistants and technicians at the front desk as he marched to his office. The looks on their faces did not go unnoticed by the good doctor. This tete-a-tete was no secret but was only spoken of in hushed tones.

Dr. Patel dialed the CEO’s number before his bottom touched his faux leather chair. It was answered on the second ring.

“I wish I could say good morning, but it is not a good morning. I asked you to make an official statement…”

There was a pause as Dr. Patel listened to the other voice on the end of his cell phone. He tapped his feet in agitation.

“So, you are basically telling me you plan on doing nothing?” Dr. Patel asked, “He can’t keep doing this. I have already sent in a written complaint.”

He sighed, and stroked his thick brows; listening once again to the voice on the other end.

“So basically, you are telling me I have no options, and YOU can’t do anything?”

Dr. Patel picked up the stress ball on his desk and started to squeeze.

“I understand that he is one of the board member’s sons, but he is junior here and he needs to show respect.”

There was a pause, “Don’t tell me to be calm, that little prick is doing it deliberately. And he is trying to take over some of my complex patients. He was on call last month, and he made ridiculous changes to some of my patient’s plan. This cannot continue. That parking spot is mine.”

Dr. Patel hung up the phone and sighed deeply. This was not going to throw off his day, he would just sip his morning chai tea and get ready for his first patient.


Dr. Patel stood in his office, looking through the blinds. Yes! Dr. Greer had driven out for lunch. Once he saw the car dash down the road, he picked up his keys and headed outside. He sauntered past the front desk into the parking lot and into his car. He made the necessary moves and entered into HIS spot and parked. He ran the air conditioner for a few minutes to cool his vehicle and went back inside. He heard the MAs giggled, one of the male technicians high-fived him and he went back to his office to finish his homemade lunch.

Dr. Greer drove back twenty-five minutes later and immediately noticed his parking spot was occupied by Dr. Patel’s black BMW. He ground his teeth and clutched his steering wheel tightly. He drove into the next available space and avoided the urge to side-swipe the BMW. It was too beautiful a German specimen. After shutting the engine off, he sat there twirling his cell phone in his hand. He should have followed his cousin and just worked in another country like Canada or anywhere away from his family. He was only at this little rinky-dink pediatric office because his mother chose to punish him. He wanted to be at the main hospital heading up their pediatric cardiology department instead of helping out old Doctor fossil face. Patel was losing his grip and barely able to keep up with the patients. They kept him on out of pity and loyalty. He really should hang up his stethoscope. David decided to call the prestigious Elaine Greer, chief surgeon of the A&E at St. Francis.

She picked up the phone and sighed before saying hello.

“Mom I am seriously considering leaving the practice. It’s not worth it.”

His mother paused before responding.

“I totally get that you wanted me to get experience working with a good cardiologist, but we don’t get along what’s the point?”

Mom talked some more.

“No, I am not being difficult, what do you mean I have an attitude?”

He rubbed his eyes and listened to his mother; he shouldn’t have called her. Should have just handed in his resignation, Dr. Patel would get his beloved parking spot and he would have peace. He could actually sleep in later.

“Mom I ….”

His mother told him to listen and not respond. When she was finished speaking, he felt conflicted. What was the right choice now?

He stepped into the office, smiling and greeting the assistants at the front. The smile was weak and forced. He collected his messages and went to his office past the opened door of Dr. Patel’s office. He actually noticed him this time.


Dr. Patel had arrived at the office at 6:00am and noticed the best sought-after parking spot was not occupied. The Chrysler was parked beside the spot. Well, looks he wore the young’un down. His father had always told him perseverance was key. If this was any indication, he was going to have a great day. His smile for the rest of that day was genuine.

Dr. Patel started to pack his bag, getting ready to leave the office. It was 6:40pm and the cleaning team had started their duties. As he exited his office, turning off his light he noted that Dr. Greer’s office light was on. He thought he had left earlier. Dr. Patel noticed his legs were heading down the hallway to his office. He knocked on the open door, and tired face Dr. Greer looked up.

“Hi Dr. Patel, I thought you had left.”

“Just leaving, I noticed your light was on and thought I could say good evening.”

Dr. David Greer smiled and Dr. Patel could see his boyish charm light up his face even with the dark circles hanging under his eyes.

“I appreciate that. Good evening to you too.”

Dr. Patel turned to walk away and then turned back.

“Dr. Greer, I noticed you came in early today but you didn’t take the parking spot, why?”

David Greer rubbed his hand over his face and leaned back in his chair. He had a feeling he would have to this conversation soon. He rubbed the back of his neck nervously and tried a few times to find the right words.

“Why don’t you sit Dr. Patel?”

Veer Patel sat in the chair that was offered to him.

“Yesterday, I called my mom, and I was telling her how I was having the hardest time working with you. I was ready to quit and get a better job somewhere else.”

“Okay, so did you change your mind?”

“Yeah, my mom told me you were the one who saved her all those years ago.”

Dr. Patel looked at his shoes, “Your mom was going through a terrible trauma.”

“Dad had died, and she was out the OR for a couple of months, and then she had to operate on a patient with the same heart condition that killed dad.”

 David wiped tears from his eyes, “she said her hands shook and she choked. You were there and you took over. You were so smooth, and professional, it almost went unnoticed. I just looked at you as an old dude that didn’t want to let go. I mean know you were a good doctor I just wanted to prove myself so bad.”

“I thought you were just a young spoilt rich kid here to step on toes.”

“I was acting like that; I owe you an apology.”

“And I owe you an apology.”

October 23, 2021 03:47

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RBE | Illustration — We made a writing app for you | 2023-02

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