Towards the end (4)
Three hours later.
Choi Ki-seok was looking down at Park Gwang-jin and Lee Tae-hyun lying side by side in the intensive care unit.
The surgery was completed successfully.
Charles completed Park Gwang-jin’s lung transplant surgery successfully, and Lee Tae-hyun’s surgery was completed with his own hands, even costing him tears of his soul.
I sat down in the chair and sighed.
The aftereffects of using Soul Tears came to me later.
My mind was blank and my arms and legs were as heavy as wet cotton.
When I think about it, I don’t know how long it has been since I last used soul tears after surgical procedures exceeded human limits.
“Chief. “Aren’t you coming home from work?”
The nurse who was checking the patients’ vitals asked.
“I heard you had a series of difficult surgeries. Please go home and get some rest.”
“I’d like to, but I think I’ll have to keep the patient until dawn today.”
“Can’t I leave it to the resident?”
“Suppose there is an emergency, it is better for me to be there. “We may not be able to respond as needed during the time we are called and arrive at the intensive care unit.”
“Anyway, the manager is great too.”
The nurse shook her head and continued speaking.
“It’s not enough to stand on duty instead of the resident, so you take care of the patient yourself.”
“What’s the big deal about being a manager?”
Choi Ki-seok chuckled and returned his gaze to the patient.
Even though the surgery was completed perfectly, the condition of the two people was poor.
Aren’t they each patients with terminal stage 4 lung cancer and cardiovascular tumor?
Overcoming the burden after surgery was not normal. In other words, it meant that from now on, the two patients, not him, would have to work hard to shake off the disease.
“Have a cup of warm cocoa.”
I took the mug the nurse gave me and took a sip of cocoa.
The sweet chocolate scent spread in my mouth and a warm feeling permeated my entire body.
At this moment, the effectiveness of cocoa was comparable to that of any other fatigue reliever.
Choi Ki-seok leaned against the back of his chair and stared at the patient monitoring device.
It seemed like today would be a particularly long night.
* * *
A month later.
Choi Ki-seok had a busy day like never before.
Is this because it has been two months since the end of MERS was declared?
The number of patients heading to the hospital increased.
The loose medical schedule was filled one by one, and later, an incident occurred in which two months’ worth of medical appointments were completed.
His second Schritel appearance broadcast.
A two-part documentary about the thoracic surgery department at Sewon Hospital.
As these two things created synergy, the number of outpatients soared.
It was natural for patients who could not receive his treatment to flock to other outpatient professors.
Sewon Hospital regained its heyday in the blink of an eye.
Meanwhile, Park Gwang-jin and Lee Tae-hyun also recovered their condition.
Park Gwang-jin woke up four days after surgery, and no cancerous tumor was found in subsequent tests.
Taehyun Lee was similar.
No rejection occurred in the transplanted organ, and the patient recovered to some extent and began chemotherapy.
It was too early to raise a toast, but it could not be denied that the first button was sewn well.
The rosette door opened and Choi Ki-seok came out into the operating room.
His eyes rested on the wall clock.
The current time was 7 PM, with 30 minutes left until the dinner time promised with Jeong Seol-hwa.
“It’s tight. “Thank you all for your hard work.”
“yes. Thank you for your hard work.”
Shim Yong-jun and Yang Hae-cheol, who were leaving the rosette behind him, bowed their heads towards him.
“I can’t believe it when I see it every day. “Are you our manager?”
“I guess not? “How can that be a person?”
Yang Hae-cheol chuckled and agreed with Shim Yong-jun’s words.
Ki-Seok Choi entered Rosette at 6 PM, the time he left work, and the current time was 7 PM. What this means is that Choi Ki-seok completed the heart surgery in just one hour.
That’s HOPE surgery…
Partial heart transplant surgery needed for patients with dilated cardiomyopathy and some heart failure…
“The last time I joined as an assistant, Professor Jang finished it in four hours. “It’s exactly four times the difference.”
“It’s really four times the difference.”
Yang Hae-cheol placed his hand on Shim Yong-jun’s stomach.
“You’ve gained a lot of weight these days. “Stop eating late night snacks.”
“Pay attention. “Why are you making such a fuss when you say you’re going to put my favorite food down my throat?”
“Cute b*stard. “It’s so annoying.”
Even while the two were bickering, they could not take their eyes off Choi Ki-seok, who was walking away. I am grateful to have a man by my side with inhuman surgical skills and a warm heart for patients.
After arriving at the office, Choi Ki-seok changed his clothes and called his younger brother, Choi Jun-ki.
“uh. It’s Jun-ki. “We’re leaving now, are you ready?”
[Don’t worry. Just my brother and sister-in-law can come. By the way, what are all these people? I think there are almost a hundred people?]
“Isn’t the party better if there are more people?”
[That’s true… wow. Isn’t that guy Lavin Williams? oh my god. Does your brother, Lavin, know?]
“Let’s talk about the details later.”
He hung up the phone first and went down to the parking lot like a bullet. Jeong Seol-hwa was fiddling with her cell phone in front of the car.
“sorry. “It’s late, right?”
Jeong Seol-hwa looked like a surprised rabbit at his words.
“Didn’t Hope go into surgery as an emergency? “Is it over already?”
“what’s the matter. “It’s me.”
He chuckled, opened the passenger door, and placed Jeong Seol-hwa on the seat. After personally fastening her seatbelt, I sat in the driver’s seat and went to my brother’s restaurant.
“It’s been a while since I visited Junki’s restaurant.”
“Let’s come often from now on. “I need to increase my brother’s sales as well.”
“In that sense, I will live tonight.”
Jeong Seol-hwa got out of the car and smiled brightly, crossing her arms.
The entrance staff found the two people and greeted them.
“I don’t think there’s anyone here today. “Are you sure you’re open for business?”
“ah. Well… something happened a few days ago, so I’m taking a short break. “The two of you will be able to spend some quality time together today.”
Jeong Seol-hwa, who was walking following the staff’s guidance, tilted her head.
There really wasn’t a single customer in the restaurant.
What was strange was that despite this, a delicious smell filled the hall.
“What do you think?”
“I just thought it was a little strange.”
“Isn’t life like there are normal days and strange days?”
“That’s a lovely answer.”
Two people sat in a seat by the window.
After a while, the course menu came out and the conversation deepened.
“I still can’t believe it.”
“The two of us are living like this right now. “It seems like just yesterday that I was interning at Uijin University.”
Her slightly raised eyes were searching for old memories.
“Honey has become the world’s only triple board thoracic surgeon, and I have also become a cardiologist and a doctor that many people recognize. “Before, I never dreamed it would be like this.”
Choi Ki-seok gently held her hand and continued speaking.
“I think that’s why life is fun. Later, when I get older, there will be times when I reminisce about the present. What do you think we will be like then?”
“I can’t even imagine. “Only about you, not me.”
Jeong Seol-hwa smiled mischievously at Choi Ki-seok’s compliment.
“Honey, a lot of incidents happen around here. “Maybe you can take off your gown and engage in politics.”
“That’s absolutely not true.”
“why? There are quite a few politicians who were doctors. “If you want to change the medical law, wouldn’t it be a bad idea to become a politician?”
Choi Ki-seok shook his head resolutely.
“I’m a doctor. “I want to focus on my patients.”
“Well, that’s true too. By the way, have you heard any news about Taeho these days?”
Wrinkles appeared on his forehead as he asked this question.
Cho Tae-ho was the son of the hospital director, and he was a guy who started arguments about everything from his time as an intern to his time as a resident.
“huh. Her major is plastic surgery. It is said that while he was operating a plastic surgery clinic in Gangnam, a patient died due to a botched surgery. “I guess we got in trouble because the patient was a celebrity.”
“It’s a good thing to be self-employed.”
Choi Ki-seok took a sip of wine and stood up.
“Shall we show off our skills for the first time in a while?”
“I’m looking forward to it.”
Her eyes followed Choi Ki-seok toward the piano in the center of the hall.
I still couldn’t forget it.
A piano performance he played himself a few years ago.
Aside from his playing skills, I was very impressed by the fact that he took time out of his free time to practice for himself.
A familiar melody enveloped my ears.
Jeong Seol-hwa surrendered herself to the melody of the piano without taking her eyes off Choi Ki-seok.
But after a while, something surprising happened.
People wearing masks began to appear one by one and fill the empty restaurant.
Didn’t they say they would be closed for business today?
It was also funny that people were wearing masks as if they had made a promise.
By the time the performance ended, the restaurant was crowded like a market.
Jeong Seol-hwa was unable to concentrate on the performance and tried to wrap her head around the situation and understand the situation.
“It’s a snowflake. “Are you surprised?”
After finishing playing, Ki-Seok Choi took his hands off the piano.
“It’s already been ten years since we met. A lot has happened in the meantime. “We did CPR together while drinking, we leaned on each other during difficult internships, and recently we even did medical volunteer work together.”
“You know what? Seolhwa I was able to endure every moment because you were by my side. I was able to come this far because you always understood and accepted me when I was stubborn. “No matter how many times I think about it, I can’t imagine myself without you.”
He paused, then continued.
“I’m sorry it took me so long to say this. “Will you be my other half?”
Choi Ki-seok approached Jeong Seol-hwa, knelt down, and held out a ring box. When he opened the ring lid, the diamond gave off a brilliant light.
Jeong Seol-hwa could not say anything and was frozen like a stone.
In the long silence, her body began to shake. Thick tears flowed down my cheeks. I didn’t know what to do with the sincerity he conveyed.
After struggling to say one word, the emotions that had been building up burst out.
Jeong Seol-hwa cried sadly as she was hugged by Choi Ki-seok.
I tried to calmly look at him and smile brightly, but contrary to my heart, my body just cried hotly.
“thank you. It’s a snowflake. “I will do well.”
While Choi Ki-seok comforted her by stroking her hair, the people filling the restaurant took off their masks one by one and applauded and whistled.
“Congratulations to you two.”
“Live happily ever after.”
Past colleagues at Uijin University, Sewon Hospital family, relationships Choi Ki-seok made overseas, etc.
The atmosphere of the restaurant became even more heated with their cheers, and Jeong Seol-hwa’s tears grew uncontrollably as she saw them.
Strangely, my heart felt like it was going to explode.
* * *
Time passed in an instant.
In this, Choi Ki-seok’s efforts to improve the treatment and environment of thoracic surgery shone.
Thoracic surgery was no longer a minor department with an insufficient number of residents.
Although it did not explode in popularity, it secured a stable number of applicants every year.
The cost of thoracic surgery has risen significantly, and the demand for thoracic surgery has increased as a law has been enacted mandating the establishment of a thoracic surgery department in hospitals with more than 100 beds.
A department that has no applicants even from university hospitals.
A course where you only work hard and don’t make much money.
Such words can now only be found in memories.
* * *
Sewon Hospital single room.
An old man with gray hair was lying on the bed and staring at the window. The wrinkles that had survived the passage of time were beautifully placed on the face of the old man with a gentle smile.
‘This day has already come.’
Choi Ki-seok quietly looked back on the past.
From the day I got into a car accident and gained a new life until this moment, every moment felt like I could grasp it.
Although I went through many hardships, I was able to wisely overcome them thanks to my special abilities and precious people.
He pushed away the memories that came to him drop by drop and opened the status window.
There was only one item that had not been used yet.
‘Now there’s no need to regret it.’
Knock. Knock. Knock.
With a knock on the door, a group of people entered the hospital room.
When the alone time he had requested was over, his students, including his children, appeared in a frightening manner.
“father. Are you feeling okay? “You shouldn’t die like this.”
The eldest son, Hayun, was crying and holding his hand, and the second daughter, Soyeon, was beside him, not knowing what to do. The disciples were looking worriedly behind their children.
“People die when the time comes. “You shouldn’t try to go against something you can’t go against.”
“I think there are patients in the afterlife too. So you’re not trying to take me away?”
Choi Ki-seok closed his eyes, feeling the warmth of his son’s hands.
It became increasingly difficult to breathe.
I could feel the vitality that had animated him slowly slipping away.
The urgent voices of Hayoon and Soyeon’s students were heard, but it only lasted for a moment.
All my senses were fading away like a dream.
Death is the final destination of all things in the world.
Although death was just around the corner, Choi Ki-seok was not that afraid. The thought of going to the side of Jeong Seol-hwa, who left a month ago, actually warmed his heart.
Soon, pitch-black darkness overtook him, and Choi Ki-seok left everything to that darkness.
That was his last thought as his remaining consciousness faded away.
My life was happy.