Chapter 9: A Doctor’s Responsibility and Dignity
Translator: EndlessFantasy Translation Editor: EndlessFantasy Translation
The surgical scissors, which had been hanging on Zheng Ren’s little finger, was magically flipped into his hand as he cut the size-seven thread.
“Doctor Zheng, your hand movement is so smooth.” Xie Yiren, who had nothing to do at the moment, praised Zheng Ren as she witnessed his skill.
“I’m used to not having an assistant when I’m closing an abdominal incision. It’s faster that way,” Zheng Ren explained himself.
“Are you afraid? That’s how it is in the emergency department.”
Zheng Ren tried to comfort Xie Yiren but as soon as he finished his sentence, they heard an uproar and the sound of a heavy, blunt weapon hitting a body in the hallway.
‘Well, the emergency department isn’t the right place for a sound mind,’ thought Zheng Ren.
Someone kicked the door open again after a few seconds and this time, a few brawny brutes appeared at the doorstep with baseball bats in their hands.
“Not bad. You escaped and even came to the hospital.” A brute sneered with a hideous grin while patting his left palm repeatedly with the baseball bat in his right hand.
He was clearly threatening everyone on the scene that his bat would end up on someone’s head, potentially causing bloodshed.
Ignoring the wound on his back, the patient jumped off the operating table like a scared rabbit and curled up at a corner of the room like a frightened little girl.
Well, at least his posture—covering his head with two arms and protecting every vital point on his body—was on point as if he was fully prepared to take a huge beating.
“Both of you, get out,” instructed the brute coldly after seeing Zheng Ren and Xia Yiren.
Normally, these self-righteous Jianghu martial artists would not harm healthcare workers in their skirmishes.
Injuries were almost inevitable in their chaotic world.
If karma truly existed, they could not blame God for unfairness had they got injured but left with no one to treat them—because they had harmed medical staff in the past.
Zheng Ren had never encountered such a vicious manhunt where the hunters even pursued their prey to the hospital.
However, he had heard it once on the grapevine about a patient, who arm fractured by blunt force trauma, receiving treatment in the emergency orthopedic department. Unfortunately, his enemies tracked him down to the hospital’s operating theater which frightened him into breaking the window and jumped down from the sixth floor in an escape attempt.
In the end, that patient suffered from extensively comminuted fractures of his bilateral lower limbs, and he was transferred from the orthopedic department directly to the intensive care unit.
Zheng Ren heard of this incident, which happened more than a decade ago, through a few senior doctors gossiping in a bar.
He had not expected to meet such an annoying and problematic issue on his first day of work in the emergency department.
What should he do?
Should he leave? What about the unfinished procedure?
Those brutes would beat him alongside the patient terribly if he stayed…
It was a difficult choice.
Zheng Ren was not a saint, but every doctor had their own moral standard.
He made up his mind instantly and nudged Xie Yiren. “You, leave.”
Startled and nervous, Xie Yiren obeyed Zheng Ren subconsciously and left the procedure room by squeezing through the wall of muscles.
The brutes gave way without attempting to stop her.
“I’m a doctor with an unfinished surgery. Please leave this room immediately,” said Zheng Ren.
As Zheng Ren was unable to express his determination through a surgical mask, he shifted his gaze to the patient instead and said, “Come here. Just a few sutures left and you’re done.”
“Yo, you’re dauntlessly brave, aren’t you?” mocked the lead brute with the ugly grin. The knife scar on his face added intensity to his ferocity like a budding chrysanthemum. “I’ve shown you respect, right?”
Zheng Ren stood firm in his faith even though his legs had turned to jelly.
How would he face others in the future if he fled in fear right now? He valued his dignity and reputation, so he had no choice but to hang in there.
Self-defense with a scalpel? Despite the fact that the scalpel was basically a toy to these brutes with their Herculean builds, his actions would be punishable by law even if he succeeded in the end.
Zheng Ren had heard of so many similar cases throughout his career, so much so that it formed callus in his ear canals.
It was absurd, but it was the truth.
There was no way Zheng Ren would abandon a patient with an unfinished surgery. Thus, he tried his best to remain calm and put all his hope in the almighty System.
“Please leave the procedure room,” Zheng Ren managed to keep his voice from shaking as he tried to maintain the dignity of a doctor. “I’m in the middle of an operation.”
“Haha.” The brute stretched his neck, radiating a bloodthirsty aura especially with his bulging muscles, and produced some audible cracks from his cervical spine. The scar on his face resembled a serpent with its mouth wide open in the form of a silent taunt.
“I’ve shown you respect but you’ve ignored my kind gesture. It’s too late for you to leave now.”
The brute’s words sent a chill down Zheng Ren’s spine. Where was the System when he needed it desperately? Perhaps a prime experience of a martial artist was beyond the System’s programming after all.
Well, Zheng Ren would not choose that experience anyway even if it existed.
Future indemnification would cost him a fortune and the hospital management would definitely fire him if these brutes were harmed in any way.
Self-defense? Not an option.
Hopefully his heroism would not be rewarded with death… Zheng Ren glanced at the patient huddling up in the corner and quickly learned how to protect his vital points with whatever time he had left.
Was it worth the pain at all… Well, he would do it again if he was given a second chance, anyway.
“Little Six, why the intense barbarity?” An elderly man in a button-down sweater appeared at the doorstep as the brute closed in on Zheng Ren.
Even without turning around, that voice alone was enough to change the brute’s expression instantly.
The ferocious brute tried to force a smile onto his face, but his rigid facial muscles contracting made him uglier than if he had been crying—in Zheng Ren’s opinion.
After turning around quickly to get a visual confirmation, the brute bowed immediately and greeted the elderly man with the utmost respect. “Elder San, what brings you here today?”
“I came here to visit a friend and saw your harassment along the way,” said the elderly man as he walked into the procedure room.
The man appeared to be in his sixties, spirited and energetic despite his thin build. His twinkling eyes were framed by long eyebrows, and a long goatee hung on his chin.
“Not really, I don’t have the courage to cause trouble. I encountered a small issue and here I am to sort things out…” Even though Elder San’s tone sounded gentle and kind, cold sweat glistened on the brute’s temples and his upper back drooped lower as if there was a huge mountain on his shoulders.
“Your microcreditmicro-credit company has nothing to do with me, but let me tell you, Little Six, it’s best to obey the rules of the older generations. You don’t fight or murder anyone in a sacred place designated for resurrections and remedies unless you want to attract bad luck,” said the kind, elderly man in his polite tone, which seemed like it could easily bring joy to others.
“Yes, of course. Thank you for the lesson.” The brute nodded vigorously in response.
The leading brute’s followers stood as close to the wall as possible with their heads lowered in order to minimize their presence, as though Elder San was a ferocious monstrosity who would devour anyone when provoked.
Elder San chatted with the brute for a short while before walking toward Zheng Ren with a smile on his face and greeted with a fist-and-palm salute1. “Hello, Chief Zheng.”
“You flatter me. My name is Zheng Ren, and you are?” Zheng Ren felt relieved instantly as the situation came under control. However, he was wearing a pair of bloodied sterile gloves, which made a handshake seem inappropriate at the moment.
He felt slightly awkward to stand still and do nothing, though.
The elderly man was taken by surprise, as he had not expected Zheng Ren to fail to recognize him.
Decades of social experience made him regain his composure almost instantly.
“I’m Mr. Bu’s butler. Mr. Bu regained consciousness after your successful surgery on him yesterday, and he instructed Ms. Bu and I to express our heartfelt gratitude to you. I was waiting for Ms. Bu’s arrival, but I was worried about your safety when I saw these brats causing trouble nearby, so here I am. Please accept my sincere apologies for any inconvenience caused,” explained Elder San.
“That’s very kind of you,” replied Zheng Ren, who was drenched in sweat. Ms. Bu? He merely thought the patient in the operating theater yesterday was either a fat cat or a nouveau riche, not someone with such a powerful background.
A nouveau riche being a nouveau riche, they would not have manners.
They were on a different level from Mr. Bu, whose butler could transform a savage brute into a tame sheep instantly with a single sentence.
Zheng Ren made a simple judgment on the current situation.
Moreover, he finally recalled that this old man had given him a name card yesterday alongside a promise to settle any future issue he encountered in Sea City.
It was obvious that this elderly man was truly powerful rather than simply ostentatious.
“Please continue your surgery. We’ll have a chat afterward,” said Elder San courteously with a fist-and-palm salute and a slight bow.
The dumbfounded Zheng Ren merely stood still like a statue, only sighing in relief after Elder San and the brutes left the procedure room.
“You, come here and lie down,” instructed Zheng Ren, pointing at the patient with his gloves almost completely caked in dried blood, which, at the very least, was intimidating.
The patient, who had been stunned for some time, snapped out of his confusion and asked softly, “Are you… Are you the Japanese professor? You’re fluent in Mandarin.”