Llanview, Angel Square Hotel

"I wish we could stay like this forever." Marcie sighed when Michael kissed her cheek.

"Me too, Sweetie. I hate being away from you. Are you sure you can't call in sick?"

Marcie looked at him, incredulous. "Are you serious?"

"Yeah! Why not?"

The seriousness of his face made Marcie laugh.

"Michael, I cannot believe you're asking me to call the police station and lie about being sick! You're a doctor!"

"I'll write you a note." Michael said.

"Right, and you don't think John will see right through that." Marcie said.

Michael sighed and kissed her again. "Okay. You're right. And at least we have a few hours before you have to get to the st-."

The familiar musical ring filled the room.

"Damn it!" Michael said.

Marcie raised her eyebrows. "You were saying something about calling in sick?"

Michael groaned and looked at the display on his cell phone.

"Great, just great!" he said angrily.

"Can't you ignore it?" Marcie pleaded.

"It's Salem General; probably Marcus with some news about Mr. Deveraux."

Marcie gave him a lingering kiss. "Call him back..." She said breathlessly.

"I can't Sweetie." He said, trying to pull away from her. "This could be important."

He opened the phone. "Dr. McBain."

"Hey, this is Marcus Hunter from Salem General."

"Dr. Hunter. How nice to hear from you. I appreciate your sending me the results of Mr. Deveraux initial tests. It was a pleasure to meet him and his wife. My girlfriend Marcie was very happy to meet them as well. How are things going?"

"Well, I have some news." Marcus said.

Michael felt his chest tighten with worry and he swallowed hard. "Yes, I'm anxious to hear it." He said, trying to sound as professional as possible.

"I've checked ...tests ... and... XY..."

"Damn this phone!" Michael said when the signal began to break up.

"Something wrong?" Marcus said.

Michael's face reddened when he realized he had spoken aloud. "Just a bad connection."

"Would you like me to call you back?" Marcus asked.

"No. It will be fine. Can you repeat what you said before?" Michael asked, bracing himself for the worst.

"Sure. I said that I rechecked all of Jack's tests and there's not a trace of the virus to be found. The surgery was a success, Dr. McBain. Jack Deveraux is cured."

Michael stared at Marcie in disbelief; still holding the phone to his ear.

"So you'll come?"

"I-I'm sorry, what?" Michael said, suddenly realized that Dr. Hunter had been talking to him.

"I said, anytime you and Marcie want to come to Salem, you are more than welcome. You saved my best friend's brother's life. I owe you the world, Dr. McBain."

"Just doing my job." Michael said.

"You do it well, Dr. McBain. You can guarantee that I won't let this go unnoticed by the Chief of Staff."

Michael couldn't believe what he was hearing. "Thank you so much, Dr. Hunter."

He closed the cell phone and sat, transfixed.

"Michael? Are you okay?" Marcie asked worriedly. "What's wrong?"

"Um... That was Dr. Hunter calling about Mr. Deveraux. He..."

"What, Michael? Oh God... no... Don't tell me he's..."

"He's cured, Marcie."

"He's... what?"

"He's cured. The XY virus is gone."

"Oh Michael!" She threw her arms around him and hugged him tightly.

"When he didn't return her enthusiasm, she pulled away.

"Michael...what's wrong?"

"I just... I can't believe it."

"I can. You're... amazing Michael. I'm so proud of you."

He looked up, and saw her smiling at him.

"Marcie... You have no idea how much it means to me to hear you say that."

"I've always been proud of you, Michael. That's why I love you so much."

Overcome with emotion, he pulled her toward him and kissed her with more passion than ever before.

"Sweetie... I've never told you this before, but I really envy Al Holden."

She looked at him, perplexed. "What? Why, Michael? You barely knew him. How could you possibly envy him?"

"Because he fell in love with you first. If it were up to me, I would have fallen in love with you a long time ago."

Before she could respond, he kissed her again.

Suddenly she sat up.

"What's wrong, Sweetie?"

"Can I borrow your cell phone, Michael?"

"Sure, go ahead."

She opened the phone and scrolled down until she found the number.

"John? This is Marcie. I'm... not going to be able to come into work today. I'm sick."

Quickly she closed the phone. "I left a message."

"I heard." Michael said, trying not to laugh.

"So, Dr. McBain... got a cure for my 'illness'?"

"I think it's pretty serious." Michael said. "It's gonna require mouth to mouth. Doctor's orders."

"Whatever you say, Doctor." Marcie laughed as they kissed again.

The End