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“Was the best. He’s dangerous, Boudreaux. I don’t know exactly why, but he needs to take a break.”

Mike stood. “Hold the report,” he said. “I’ll talk to him. And investigate if there’s a problem.”

Paul stared defiantly. “That’s not the way I’m going to handle this,” he said. He did not like Clayton, nor most surgeons for that matter, and he thought Clayton’s privileges should be suspended based on poor performance. But Mike knew this was not personal for Paul. Paul cared about his patients . . . not just his reputation. He was among the best in his specialty.

Paul took back the pages. “Don’t try to bury this, Boudreaux,” he said.

Mike glared. “I’m not your problem, Paul. Stay civil.”

“You’re chief of service with the duty to act. And don’t delay.”

“I’m not dishonest, Paul. I’ll do what needs to be done.”

Paul frowned and shook his head slowly. “I misspoke,” he said. “You’ll do what’s right. But he needs to step down . . . and I don’t see him doing it on his own.”