The world keeps spinning. Patients come and go. The days pass by without him even knowing which one it is and by the time he reminds himself to get the date, the day is already done and he is returning to a dark, empty hotel room that feels too damn big and cold without her. Despite him trying to convince himself otherwise, he knows that her scent has completely disappeared from the room. It is no longer on the sheets of the bed or on the furniture and the faintest hint of apple body-wash that had been lingering in the bathroom has evaporated into the air.
It is as if she was never even there in the first place but Mark knows better. There is a split second every time he walks down the carpeted hallway from the elevator and he reaches into his pocket for the key card. He stands outside his door and for a second, just a split second but it is enough to torture him, he thinks that she is on the other side of the door waiting for him.
He thinks of all of the other times he came back to the hotel and she had beaten him back to the room after their shifts at the hospital. She was always so comfortable there, whether he was there with her or not, and walking into the room, he would find her already dressed for bed – which was usually just a pair of panties and one of his tee-shirts (which always looked infinitely times better on her than him) – and she would be lounging on the bed or stretched out across the couch, flipping through the television channels, trying to find something to watch. Sometimes, she had gotten carry-out. Sometimes, she had gotten room service but no matter what, she always made sure that there was more than enough food for him to eat when he got there.
She understood that despite the way he acted, some deep hidden part within himself that not even he acknowledged half of the time liked to be taken care of from time to time and she getting food for him was her way of doing that.
After the unfortunate penis-breaking incident, they never had sex in the hospital again and sometimes, Mark would return to the hotel room to find her already naked and hot and she would practically pounce on him, wanting him so much. Sometimes, she had no patience and would just push him onto the bed, straddling him, and unzipping his pants, she would start riding him right then and there. She had no idea how hard her take-charge attitude made him.
But now, every night, he comes back to the hotel and pushing open the door to his room, he finds that she isn’t there and that he is alone.
He almost wants to call down to the front desk and ask for a different room but he never does because despite everything, he still considers this to be their room and he doesn’t want to give that up. And plus, she might come back.
He knows it’s highly unlikely but even Mark Sloan is allowed to dream.