Quentin was in charge of the gallery, and he had been good friends with Dean for many years. He had hopes that Naomi would show up, hence why he called Dean.
Naomi had not expected this, considering that Dean had informed the gallery of her situation a long time ago. For a while, she could not go to work. After thinking for a moment, she said, My hand hasn’t fully recovered yet. It might not be a good idea to go like this.”
Indeed, her hand’s condition significantly affected its appearance.
Dean replied, “I’ve talked to Quentin. He said it’s okay and that you don’t need to do on–site carvings. They just want you to have a meal. They mentioned meeting all the masters in the gallery. Quentin also explained your situation to them, but they insisted it’s fine as long as you can join the meal. Think about it. If you don’t want to go, I’ll talk to Quentin again.”
Dean never forced Naomi to do anything. He always let her make her own decisions.
Understanding his implied message, Naomi felt obligated to go. If she did not go, it might not be good for the gallery, putting Quentin in an awkward position.
“It’s just a meal. I’ll go, then,” Naomi decided.
To emphasize the significance of the event and the respect for the masters, they even sent a special car to pick her up. Naomi quickly tidied herself and got into the car.
“Naomi, what happened to your hands? Is it better?” The person sharing the car with her was Harold Zimmer, the oldest master in the gallery. He had always taken care of her. Whenever something confused Naomi, she would turn to Harold. He was like a mentor to her.
Naomi nodded and said, “It’s scabbing now. It should be almost healed in another week.”
“Let me take a look.” Harold turned on the light and examined her hand. 70 percent of her hands were burned, especially the palm and fingertips, covered in dark red scabs that had not faded yet.
“It’s obvious that the scabs just formed. It makes my heart tighten just looking at it.” Harold frowned. “Did it reach the bone?”
Naomi shook her head. “No, it didn’t.”
“That’s good, then. If the injury had reached the bones, it would’ve been troublesome. You have to take good care of yourself during your recovery period. Avoid getting wet as much as possible. Once the scab comes off, it should be fine.”
Naomi nodded and said, “I’ll remember that. You can trust me.”
Harold informed her about some matters in the studio during her absence. The progress of the previous carvings slowed down without her, and there were orders for new carvings from various places, interviews, and restoration work. These were the usual affairs in the studio.
Naomi listened quietly as the car moved steadily forward. Harold, continuing the conversation, eventually brought up the important visitor for the night. “I heard that the person coming this time not only plans to organize an event in Herland but also has intentions to open a museum.”
“If that’s the case, we might need several masters to go there.”
“He’s getting old and doesn’t want to travel around anymore. But you’re young; you can go take a look in Herland.”
Naomi did not want to leave home. She loved her hometown and cherished the simplicity of this city. However, if she had to go, she would not refuse.
Nonetheless, she expressed, “It probably won’t be me.
“If a new museum is opening in Herland, they’ll certainly need an experienced master. My skills aren’t the best in the studio, and my experience isn’t extensive, especially in the past three years when I haven’t been in this profession. I’m a bit rusty, so I’m not suitable.” “Ahaha! Don’t be modest. You’re meticulous and patient. Although you’re the youngest in terms of experience here, when it comes to attention to detail and creativity, you’re the best. Don’t worry. If it comes to that, I’ll be the first to recommend you!”
Naomi smiled helplessly and said, “We’ll see when the time comes.”
An hour later, the car stopped in Fansville. The driver opened the door, and Naomi got out.
However, as soon as her feet touched the ground and she stood under the moonlit night, a figure ahead became clear in front of her.