“Jack says you have a girlfriend.”
“If Jack doesn’t stop saying things, he’s going to need a new place to live.” Dean shuffles past his sister, opens the refrigerator door to pull out the carton of eggs.
Half of them are missing. Dean frowns down at them.
“If Jack keeps eating my food, he’s going to need a new place to live,” he amends, scrubbing a hand over his face. Next to him, Yemi leans against the counter, chin in palm. Laughing at him.
“How did you get in here?” Dean picks out three eggs, sets them on the counter and puts the rest back in the fridge, takes out the butter while he’s in there. “Did Jack let you in?”
Another reason to kick him out. Dean pulls out a frying pan, considers hitting himself in the face with it to avoid the conversation he’s about to have.
“I made myself a key.” Yemi shrugs, turns to lean on her elbows and watch her big brother move around the kitchen as he goes about making breakfast for himself. Her words give him pause, though.
“You made yourself a key?”
“Relax, I’m kidding!” Laughing outright now, Yemi shakes her head, curls bouncing. “I didn’t make myself a key. I’m not that kind of sister.” She shudders. “You are fully allowed to have your own life, and it’s none of my business unless you want it to be.”
“You just asked me about my girlfriend,” Dean points out, pulling a bowl out of a cupboard. He starts cracking eggs into it.
“Ha!” Yemi points at him, bouncing on her heels, grin wide. “So you do have a girlfriend! Which, by the way, technically I did not ask you about. All I did was say Jack said you had one.”
“That counts as prying.”
“It so does,” Dean shoots back, grinding salt and pepper into his eggs before he starts whisking.
“Are you going to tell Mom?” Yemi pushes off the counter, goes rummaging for bread. “Hey, why is your bread in the... Oh. You’re not going to tell Mom.”
The look on her brother’s face says everything he isn’t. Yemi sighs, shoulders slumping.
“So you’re not serious about her?”
“What?” Dean sets the bowl down, moves over the the pan waiting on the stove. He puts a pat of butter in it, turns on the burner. “I didn’t say that.”
“You didn’t have to. The look on your face… And the fact that I heard about her from Jack…”
“That’s not--I’m serious about her. I kind of have to be.”
Yemi’s brow furrows. “What does that mean?”
“She’s not the kind of girl that dates casually.”
Still confused, Yemi is half-staring at her brother as she puts bread in the toaster. Dean ignores her for long enough to add his eggs to the center of the frying pan, pushing the melted butter out to the edges so that the eggs won’t stick.
“She’s a surgeon,” he says, when he finally speaks. “She’s a surgeon--well, she’s a surgical resident--at Grey-Sloan Memorial. She’s smart, she’s creative, she’s organized, she’s quirky…”
“Okaaay,” Yemi drawls out the word, narrowing her eyes at her brother. “Is she hideous or something?”
“No,” Dean snaps. “No, she’s beautiful. One of the most beautiful women I’ve ever seen.”
“Oh, wow.” Yemi grins again, slow. “You are totally into her.” She frowns again. “I don’t get it. What’s the problem?”
“There isn’t one. I haven’t told Mom because you know how Mom gets. She’d scare her off. I didn’t tell you because I know how you get. You’d want to instantly be her best friend.”
“Please,” Yemi scoffs, “Give me more credit than that. I can be cool.”
Dean snorts, and she smacks him in the arm, lightly.
“I can be. Besides, what makes you think I’d want to be friends with the types of nerds you date?”
“Trust me, you’d like her. She listens to that podcast you like, the weird one about the town in the desert.”
That does sound promising. Yemi crosses her arms, raising an eyebrow.
“So why can’t I meet her?”
Dean’s wrist moves more quickly, stirring the eggs in the pan.
“Is she married?”
“Is she insane?”
“Is she white?”
Dean starts laughing, shaking his head. “No.”
“Then what could possibly be wrong with her?”
“Nothing! There’s nothing wrong with her. Dahlia is basically perfect, which is terrifying. I’m just not ready for my family to scare her off.”
“Okaaay,” Yemi says again. The toast pops, making her jump. Her mind is whirling. “And this has nothing to do with the fact that a couple of months ago you told Mom you weren’t interested in settling down, so now you look like a hypocrite?”
“You are my least favorite sister.”
“I’m your only sister. I have to be your least favorite, and your favorite, just because you have no other options.” Yemi pulls out the toast, setting it on a plate that Dean’s produced from nowhere and piled his eggs onto. Then she pats his shoulder as an excuse to wipe the crumbs off.
“Have another cup of coffee. You’re grumpy.”
“You’re meddling and ignoring my boundaries. I have a right to be grumpy.”
Yemi holds her hands up in a gesture of surrender. “No more boundary ignoring. Girlfriend talk is off the table until you bring her up.” She crosses her heart, then her fingers, holding them up.
Yemi hums, studying her brother for a few seconds longer before she nods to herself.
“So have a good day at work. I’ll talk to you later.”
“Wha--what, you’re just leaving?” Dean gives her a quizzical look. Yemi shrugs.
“Sure. You have work, and I have things to do.” Pushing up on tiptoe, Yemi kisses Dean’s cheek, pats his shoulder again. “Be safe.”
The thought occurs to her when she’s at the door, and Yemi pauses, turning back around.
“Hey. She’s cool with you being a firefighter? Or is that the real reason you don’t want Mom knowing her--you’re worried about them ganging up on you to make you quit?”
“No,” Dean says, as emphatically as possible around a mouth full of eggs and toast. He swallows. “Now get out.”
It was a complete accident. It was a complete accident, and Yemi will make sure Dean knows it. Still, she winces as she walks into the emergency room at Grey-Sloan Memorial, clutching her wrist to her chest. It isn’t going to look like an accident.
It’s going to look like Yemi is being one of those pushy, overbearing sisters who think bullying their brothers is a form of love.
It’s a big hospital. What are the odds that she’s even going to see Dean’s new girlfriend, or know it’s her if she does? They all call each other by their last names, anyway.
The guilt is still there, though, as she gets herself checked in and settles down to wait. If a call brings Dean in, she knows how it will look to her brother. All Yemi can do is hope that doesn’t happen. She sinks a little lower in her seat.
The minutes tick by slowly. It feels like several hours have passed before her name is called, although a glance at the clock says it’s only been about a quarter of one.
“Ms. Miller?” She glances up at the woman who’s called her name. She’s in powder blue scrubs, long sleeves underneath that indicate she’s also wearing a lavender undershirt. What catches Yemi’s attention, however, is the hijab covering her hair. It has a blue and purple paisley pattern that Yemi kind of loves. It reminds her of something her dad likes to say.
“I’m Dr. Qadri,” the woman continues, smiling warmly at her as Yemi follows her over to an exam station. She hops awkwardly up on the bed as Dr. Qadri looks at her intake chart. “It says here you hurt your wrist when you caught yourself while tripping?”
Yemi groans, nods.
“It was so stupid. My heel caught on the edge of the curb, and I put my hand out when I went down.”
“Well, human instinct is to protect the head. It houses our most important organ, after all.” Dr. Qadri smiles again. “May I look at your wrist, please?”
Yemi slowly pulls her arm away from her chest, holding it out for Dr. Qadri to examine it. Even doing that makes her wince and hiss. Her wrist feels heavy, and holding it up makes it throb dully.
Gentle, cool fingers probe the bruised, swollen flesh of her wrist. Yemi whimpers when Dr. Qadri asks her to try flexing her hand, manages to do it just enough to confirm that she still has movement.
“It doesn’t look broken. I’m going to page our ortho attending, and they’ll probably want to send you up to radiology for an x-ray, just to be safe. Can you sit tight for just a few minutes?”
“My afternoon plans are already sort of ruined,” Yemi smiles, “I’m not going anywhere.”
Dr. Qadri smiles again, just as warm. Yemi can’t help but smile back with an answering warmth. When the woman ducks out, Yemi lets out a breath, gingerly pulls her wrist back to her chest.
The next time the curtains are pulled back, Dr. Qadri is accompanied by a tall Asian man in dark blue scrubs. He’s so gorgeous, for a few seconds Yemi forgets she’s in pain at all.
“Ms. Miller, this is Dr. Kim. He’s going to examine your wrist again, and then take you up to radiology.”
“Do you not think it’s a sprain after all?” Yemi winces as she offers Dr. Kim her wrist. There’s a slight frown on his face as he does all the things Dr. Qadri had her do, plus a few more than have tears springing to her eyes. When his gaze meets hers, though, he gives her a reassuring, if quick, smile.
“It definitely seems like a sprain, although we’ll send you up for x-rays so we know for certain. Dr. Qadri just wanted a second opinion, and ortho is my specialty.”
“Oh.” Yemi nods like that makes sense to her, looks at Dr. Qadri. “What’s your specialty?”
“I’m an intern,” Dr. Qadri says, “I don’t have one yet. I really like plastics, though.”
“Boob jobs and tummy tucks?”
“It’s more than that,” Dr. Qadri smiles slightly. “It’s new faces, and rebuilt hands… Plastics helps people.”
“Of course,” Yemi agrees, slightly chastised. “Sorry, I didn’t mean to offend you.”
“You didn’t,” Dr. Qadri reassures her. “I know how plastics sounds to people. My dad said basically the same thing you did, when I told him I was thinking about it.”
“But you’re doing it anyway?”
“I learned a long time ago not to let what other people think about me hold me back from the things I want to do.” Dr. Qadri shrugs. “But who knows? I’m not even a full-fledged resident yet. I have four years to think about it.”
“You’re going to end up in Plastics,” Dr. Kim speaks up, glancing up from his tablet as he does. “I said the same thing about ortho when I was an intern. The specialty picks the person.”
“Either way,” Dr. Qadri shrugs, “Right now, you’re my patient, Ms. Miller.”
“Yemi. Call me Yemi, please.” She pauses, wondering if what she wants to say next is a bad idea. It most likely is, but Yemi’s never been very good at quelling curiosity. “Dr. Qadri, do you happen to know an intern whose first name is Dahlia?”
Dr. Qadri and Dr. Kim exchange a look.
“I’m Dahlia,” she says slowly. “But why are you…” Her words slow as she puts the pieces together, eyes widening. “Yemi Miller . You’re Dean’s sister.”
“And you’re his new girlfriend.” Yemi is torn between squealing in delight and wishing for another intern. Dean is not going to be happy. “I swear I didn’t come here to meet you.”
Dahlia gestures to her wrist. “That much is obvious.”
“Yeah.” Yemi winces. “He’s gonna be pissed, though. He hates the meddling sister act.”
Dr. Kim nods. “It’s annoying, to be sure. I think he’ll be more upset that you got hurt, though.”
“You don’t know my brother.”
“Actually…” Dahlia bites her lip before she continues, “He kind of does. Dean and I have gone on a couple of double dates with Ni--with Dr. Kim and his partner.”
So Hottie Dr. Kim is taken. Sighing to herself, Yemi offers Dr. Kim and Dahlia a smile.
“Please don’t tell him I came in.”
“Right now, let’s just focus on getting you up to radiology for those scans. You can worry about Dean later.” Dahlia leaves the area, comes back quickly with a wheelchair that Yemi glares at.
“I hurt my wrist, not my legs.”
“Hospital regulations. Hop in.” Once Yemi is settled, Dahlia steps back, as though she’s going to leave.
“You’re not coming with me?”
“Dr. Kim will take you.”
“And you’re not going to tell Dean?”
Dahlia huffs, lips twitching. “No. I’m not going to tell Dean.”
Yemi nods, relaxing. “Alright. Hopefully the next time we meet it’s because my brother actually introduces us.”
She gives Dahlia a wave as Dr. Kim wheels her away. Once they’re out of earshot, Yemi groans, burying her face in her good hand.
“He’s gonna kill me,” she mutters, because she knows her brother will find out somehow. “I think I get why didn’t he tell me about her, though.”
Dr. Kim stops the wheelchair in front of the elevator, pressing a button. “He didn’t?”
“No,” Yemi shakes her head. “I had to find out from his roommate.”
His lips thin, but Dr. Kim says nothing. Yemi feels the need to explain, defend her brother.
“I mean, he did nothing but gush about her once I asked him, but he didn’t mention he was seeing anyone.”
Dr. Kim hesitates, glancing back towards where Dahlia is probably with another patient, by now. The elevator opens before he can answer her, and he wheels Yemi inside. Once they’re moving, he speaks.
“Four months?” Yemi repeats.
“They’ve been seeing each other for four months, and they were talking for awhile before that.”
“Wow.” That has to be some sort of track record for her brother, Yemi thinks. “I don’t think he’s dated someone that long since college. He must really like her.”
“How much can he like her if he hasn’t told his family about her?”
“You don’t know my family,” Yemi defends. “Dad’s alright, except that he defers to Mom like she’s his boss. But Mom… Is intimidating.” To say the least. She thinks of the deal Dean has with their mother, and sighs.
“She’s been making Dean go on dates lately with women of her choosing, because she wants to settle down. If he introduces her to his girlfriend the dates will stop, but Mom will give him maybe two weeks, tops, before she starts pushing to meet Dahlia, asking him about their future plans. Dean hates it when people meddle in his business. Even more when it’s family.”
Which is why he’s going to kill her when he finds out. Yemi groans, earning herself a raised eyebrow from Hottie Dr. Kim.
“This morning I promised him that I would let him tell me about her when he’s ready. This afternoon, I met her. I’m gonna need more than a brace to defend myself… Any chance you could write me a note?”
Dr. Kim chuckles.
“I’ll see what I can do.”