-Betaed by Lora Kael. Any remaining mistakes are mine. Republish after being betaed.
-Warning: bad attempt at humor.
Stephen found Christine's number on his speed dial and caller her. Even if it was urgent, he still wanted to do social distancing.
She picked up after the third ring. "Hi Stephen, I hope you don't need emergency care at the moment because I'm swamped with this COVID-19 pandemic. You should be extra careful because now it's not the best time to get injured. Not that there is any good time but you know what I mean."
He blew his loose strand of hair out of his face—he really needed a haircut if he ever had the time. Her reply was harsh but fair since lately most of the time he sought her out for medical emergencies. Occasionally, he tried to be a good friend and listen to her talking about her day during dinner but with their hectic schedules, that moment was few and far between. "Hello Christine, it's nice to talk to you too. How are you doing?"
She snorted. "Pretending to be polite and sociable doesn't suit you. What do you want?"
"Do you have five minutes?"
She sighed. "It'd better be important. I'm due for my break anyway. Lucy, could you cover for me? I'll have my lunch now."
He heard the hustle and bustle in the background. How he missed those sounds. He knew medical professionals were really needed at this time, and wished he could help out, but Wong had pointed out that during this pandemic his job to protect this multiverse had become more important than ever. It was as if all those supernatural forces knew that this dimension was at its weakest and tried to attack it. He wouldn't be surprised if that somehow they had caused it in the first place.
Three minutes later, he heard Christine said. "I can talk now. So what's up?"
"Could you please explain why I saw my face at the PSA about how to wash hands and wear a mask to protect someone from getting infected?"
"Oops, you saw. I thought you don't watch TV."
"It's on TV, too!?" He didn't know how to face the other sorcerers now. "Why didn't Wong tell me?"
"Perhaps because you two are too busy to have time to watch TV. But how did you find out if you don't watch TV?"
"YouTube. Wong showed it to me when he browsed through trying to find some new songs for his iPod."
"I didn't know it would be on YouTube."
"I think you miss my point on purpose. Why is my face shown in the first place? There're plenty of doctors out there. Why is there a footage of that in the first place?"
"To answer your last one, I guess the cameras at Metro General have way higher resolution than we thought. And it was not my decision. It's Scott Cargill's decision." So it was the head of the hospital's decision and not really in her hands. He knew that but he wanted answers. "He said we needed to find a famous doctor who is easy on the eyes and has beautiful hands. I guess you fit the bill as the video showed you wash your hands so thoroughly with your long fingers and flowing water. It looks like a work of art. You should be proud of that."
In the old days, such a compliment especially about his look would work. Nowadays, he preferred to work with less exposure. "Why didn't he find a current famous doctor? Not a former doctor who can barely holds his fork and knife without shaking?" He also couldn't help but compare his hands in the PSA and the state of his hands now.
"You're still a doctor, Stephen. We all know that. Even when you don't practice medicine now, you're always a doctor at heart. I'm not entirely sure but I think Scott is a fan of your superhero work. The other day, he said that you're his favorite Avenger."
His eyebrows rose to his hairline. "I'm not even an Avenger. I didn't even realize that he knew that I have superpowers."
"Scott is a smart guy. Besides, you often stumble into the hospital being critically injured. I think he put two and two together … unless he thought you're part of a Fight Club. You should be proud that the video of your washing hands and wearing a mask could save lives."
When she put it that way, it made sense. Of course it did. She knew how to say something to soothe him. When she said he could still save lives in other ways, this was the furthest thing in his mind—not that being a sorcerer was within his or her realm of imagination either. He still grumbled because he wouldn't let her know that she'd won so easily. "Now I'll be the laughing stock of the Avengers and my enemies and nemeses." It was bad enough that he was the poster boy for a doubter of magic who turned into not only a believer, but also an expert. Now he was the poster boy for washing hands as well!
She chuckled. "Most people don't have any enemy or nemeses in their lifetime. Some only have one nemesis, but of course you always strive to be more. I doubt those supernatural creatures or monsters watch YouTube or TV. As for the Avengers, you can always bring up that even Cap did those PSA for high school children. I think his is way more embarrassing than yours."
When she put it that way, it didn't seem like such a big problem. Initially he wanted to storm into Scott's office (and stay at least six feet apart of course) asking him to remove his face from the ad, because it was aired without his permission. Before doing that, he would like to ask Christine's opinion. She usually had very good judgment— way better than his— in this kind of real-life situation. "Fine, you win this time. If you ever need any extra pair of hands, albeit the shaking ones, I'll see what I can do."
"Thanks for the offer, Stephen. I really appreciate it. I know you're super busy protecting this realm. But if you ever have any free time and not being injured, I could use an extra pair of hands, firm or otherwise, don't matter to me. I really need to go now. I'm really proud of you've become, minus the getting critically injured part, of course. Bye."
He felt some warm fuzzy feelings in his chest. It must be some indigestion from eating ramen before Wong stormed in with his video. The Cloak returned from wherever she was and settled on his shoulders.
-In real life, they definitely needed Stephen's permission to air the video. This story was just a what-if situation. This story was inspired by a tweet by Marvel saying that washing hands could save lives and showed Stephen washing his hands.
-The mention about the poster boy for a doubter of magic turned a believer was from the "M" part of "A-Z of Doctor Stephen Strange"
-This story doesn't in anyway wants to make light of the current situation, I think we just need something to lighten up our mind . Some information about Corona prevention can be found: nytimes dot com /article/prepare-for-coronavirus dot html and who dot int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019/advice-for-public. Please stay safe and healthy.