2010-08-08: Awesome Girl On The Mend


Connor_icon.jpg Heather_icon.jpg Jill_icon.jpg Tara_icon.jpg

Summary: After the Ahab attack, Tara has visitors and well-wishers dropping by the medbay to bring dubious get well presents.

Date: August 8, 2010

Log Title: Awesome Girl on the Mend

Rating: PG

Xavier Mansion - Medical Bay

The Medical Bay contains the latest medical equipment to patch up students and X-Men with the smallest and worst injuries. Six beds line the walls for injured patients. Equipment lines the walls, medicine in the cabinets, and more serious medical supplies locked in cabinets. One this about this room it screams sterilization.

For those people who know Tara, this is probably the quietest and most still she's ever been, and with good reason. Suffering badly from second degree burns all over the front of her body from her encounter with the flying microwave Firestar and a broken ankle to boot would do that to anybody. Since she's unable to wear any kind of clothing without any kind of discomfort or pain, she keeps the privacy curtain closed, and only puts on a hospital gown when she has visitors. She's got a small boom box set up beside her bed, with her iPod plugged into it, and the soothing sounds of Dead Can Dance play from it.

Outside the confines of the curtained bed, there is the murmur of voices and footsteps. The voices are the muffled near-whispers of any hospital visitor afraid that loud noises might spook the delicate machines. "Tara?" asks a soft girl-voice from the other side of the barrier, the decidedly squishy person it comes from being overly cautious in case the patient is sleeping.

"I'm awake," comes the reply from behind the curtain. The music snaps off and there's some rustling noises as Tara moves to cover herself up with the blanket. "Just give me a sec to get decent." A bit more shuffling around and the curtain opens on it's own, being pushed aside with Tara's telekinetics. "Hey, Jill," she says, grinning at the other girl. The burns look pretty bad. The entire front half of her is bright red, and there's some bandages around where the worst of the blistering has been, and the skin is shiny from a medicinal ointment that was applied earlier to help treat the burn. "Pretty awesome hunh?" she asks.

"Whoa," Jill breathes in equal parts astonishment and revulsion. Her bedside manner totally sucks, because she grits her teeth and sucks a long hissing breath through them. "Oh my God." As if propriety has suddenly leapt up to throttle her brain, Jill drops her eyes to the short stack of books cradled in her arms instead of at Tara's massive burns. "I sorta heard… what happened, but…" The blue girl's eyes flick to the bed, the boom box, at everything *but* Tara. She's not so good in situations like this.

Tara can't help but grin at Jill's discomfort, and chuckles a little. "I know, gnarly, isn't it? I'm told that it looks pretty gross, but it looks worse than it actually /is/." She shakes her head, "It's like really, really bad sunburn, that's all. Give me a week and I'll be fine. The thing that really bothers me is my ankle," she says, holding up her right foot so Jill can see the cast they put on it. "I'm not going to be able to do any gymnastics while it's healing." And THAT bothers her more than anything else.

A look at the ankle sends Jill a little further down the grossed-out path. She grimaces deeply and shifts her armload of books to set them on the corner of the little bedside table. The books are a very odd mix of classic literature, non-fiction, and the cheapest sort of trash sci-fi and fantasy available. The only thing they have in common is a row of raised bumps along the spines. "That's awful," she agrees, but is probably referring to more than just the loss of gymnastics practice. "What the hell happened?" Jill finally blurts. "You got attacked, that's what I heard, but how…" She looks visibly broken up about it, taking up the slack for Tara not being more upset.

"Oh, you know that Ahab guy that came from the future to totally mess up our present?" Tara asks, lowering her leg, and letting the covers flip over the cast to avoid any more discomfort. "He attacked again at the Salem Center looking for Rashmi again. He didn't find her. He found me and Connor instead." She gives the other girl a grin that could scare a shark and clutches her fist. "We totally kicked his ass!"

Jill's jaw would hit the floor if she were a cartoon. As it is, she's still in danger of catching flies. "You got in a fight with somebody from the future," she repeats flatly just to make sure she's got it right. Her eyes track the insides of the burned girl's arms to see if there's a morphine drip or something that needs turning down a notch. Or up. "I'm, uh, glad you won. Is Connor okay?" Jill cranes her neck to look around the medical bay at the other beds.

Tara is free from a morphine drip. The medicinal goo they use to help the burn has an anesthetic in it to help with the pain as well. "Yeah. He got his arm banged up pretty badly, but other than that he's fine.' She laughs again and says, "Yeah, fighting supervillains is like landing an airplane. Anything you can walk away from is a victory."

"You coulda died." The words come out in a dark tone. It's not an admonishment, just a flat statement of a grim fact that weighs more heavily on Jill than on Tara. "I mean, I wish I'd been there. Maybe I could've helped. I don't know." Tara's unflappable spirit is slowly defusing Jill's little spaz out, but she still doesn't look happy about it. "I'm glad you're okay," she finishes weakly, squeezing her hands together.

"But I didn't die," comes Tara's matter-of-fact retort. "I mean, hell, I could die in this bed for any /number/ of reasons. You always got a chance you're gonna die, so you can't let that drag you down." She pauses for a bit after Jill expresses her relief, before grinning at her. "Hey. Thanks. Don't worry about it, you know? This is why we have the danger room sessions. It's so that if something like this happens you're prepared to keep yourself alive and help out if you can."

Jill's tongue clicks against the roof of her mouth and she exhales, giving up on winning this argument. "You're like one of the only friends I've got here so far. So if you go and die, I'd have to kill you." She lifts a balled fist like she's gonna punch something. Black humor, the best kind. She leans a little closer to the bed, claiming a few inches of the bed's edge to rest her weight carefully, very carefully. "I'm kind of looking forward to them now, the danger room things. Some people say they're fun, but mostly that they're useful. I brought you some stuff to help pass the time until you get better." Nodding her head at the short stack of books, Jill picks one up and holds it like a game show host giving out the big prize. "Look!" she says enthusiastically. "Tom Sawyer. In Braille!"

"Fair enough," Tara says to Jill's humor. "I'll make sure to hold you to that." She tries to hide her wincing when Jill sits on the bed causing the sheets to move across her raw skin. She blinks in surprise as the other girl holds up the book. "I… uh… thanks!" she says, trying to sound more enthusiastic about the gift than she is.

Jill flips open the book and thumbs through it, oblivious to the discomfort she's causing poor Tara by sitting on the edge of the bed. She even turns the Braille book on its side to see if makes more sense that way. Nope, can't read a word. Just little raised bumps. "I wasn't sure what you'd want to read so I got a bit of everything. The library here's really well-stocked!" A thought occurs to her and she lowers the book to her lap. "I'm not bugging you, am I? You don't need to rest or anything?"

Tara rolls her eyes in exasperation. "Oh GOD. More bed rest is just what I /don't/ need. The only reason I'm not out and about is that it still sucks to wear clothes and I'd have to run around naked." She nods at the mention of the library, "Yeah, I know. People like to go overboard when they find out I'm blind. I appreciate the thought, though, even if Tom Sawyer isn't my thing."

Having been held overnight for observation, the medical bunk down at the end of the row stirs as Connor awakens to the sound of talking. Rolling his head to look over at the other side and up the way, he grumbles out, "You're more Huck Finn anyways, Tara…" Pushing himself up to sitting, he rolls his neck, "Wow, slept like a rock… hey Jill."

"Yeah, you probably couldn't get away with that," Jill considers thoughtfully. With a little disappointed frown, she closes the book and lays it on top of the others on the bedside table. "I could run errands for you, if you want. Get some food from the kitchen, or go into town and get something." She waves her hands to forestall any protests. "Really! I don't mind!" Her head cocks to the side curiously, trying to place the new voice before she looks. "Connor? Hey! You're okay too! That's great!" Okay being a very, very relative term.

"Yeah, I mean, normally I wouldn't do it because people would just faint at how awesome and cute I am," Tara says, "But people say that my skin looks pretty nasty and I wouldn't want to freak them out with it." When she hears her partner in crime wake up she waves a hand at him. "Hey, sleepy head."

Connor pushes himself to standing with his good arm, and then gets himself his sandals again, looking them over before strapping them in place. Walking over to the others, he has a portable med monitor on his arm so the nurses can monitor him while he's mobile, "You look like a lobster, Tara. That's gonna turn down into one serious tan." At the words from Jill, he shrugs, "Tara did all the dangerous stuff… I just tried to mangle my own arm decking the bad guy."

"The downside of superheroing," Jill comments a little dryly. She rises from the edge of Tara's bed with a soft squeak of the mattress. She licks her blue lips and looks like she wants to say something more about that and be the fussy mother hen, but lets it go. "I'm glad you're *both* okay. At least you didn't lose your hair." Jill peers closer at Tara. "Much of it anyway."

Tara snickers at Jill. "Yeah, well, I wasn't playing with fire, at least. I was playing with a microwave," she explains. "And I look like a /boiled/ lobster, Connor. At least I stopped oozing last night. That just felt nasty." All second degree burns look far worse than they actually are, and Tara's is no exception. She's got bandages wrapped around the worst of the blisters that had formed, and is clearly lying naked underneath the blanket, her skin glistening with a medicinal ointment used to treat the burn. "Enh," she says, dismissing Jill’s mother hen-ness. "We're both pretty badass. Nothing we couldn't take care of."

Connor laughs a bit, but there's a slightly nervous edge to it as he replies, "When I asked you to hit her, I didn't expect you to football tackle! I thought you were going to throw something heavy, or something…" Trailing off as his eyes dilate a bit, and then settle once more, "Sorry… yesterday was weird. I usually don't get like that unless I'm in the danger room, to be honest."

That characteristic quick little pitpat of feet, unusually quick, but not so hard that it's actually running, signals Heather's approach. She peeks around the corner before entering into the medbay, holding two small containers. The contents of these are products of her most recent cooking attempt, which might be thoughtful if her cooking weren't so unfortunate and strange. The containers hold a piece of chicken each, covered in maple syrup, with a side of sliced pieces of toast covered in a spaghetti sauce that uses bits of asparagus instead of meat. She glances between the recipients of these 'gifts' and says, "I brought something for you both."

"Oozing's not so bad," Jill says in a small voice, folding an arm behind her back and grabbing her other elbow. "You'll have to give me the full story later." She blinks, turning around to see yet another entry into the increasingly crowded medical bay, and steps back to let Heather closer to Tara's bed.

"You saw what she did to that garbage can I threw at her," says Tara defensively. "If it wasn't for the other telekinetic I wouldn't have figured out how to shield myself against her microwaves." Her nose wrinkles in distaste as she catches whiff of Heather's distinctive cooking long before she hears the footsteps or hear her voice. "Hey, Heather," she says, not bothering trying to chipmunk speak today. "I, uh, thanks. You can put it over there," she says to the bedstand that's holding her boombox. "I'll get to it when I get hungry again." Which probably won't be for a while until she can dispose of the maple chicken.

On the other hand, Connor accepts the sauced toast, and gives it a few bites, blinking at the extremely off mix of flavors. Gulping it down, he takes another and says quietly to Heather, "Thank you… it's actually kinda good." Moving back towards his spot with the rest of the slice, which he chews on slowly to help keeping the oddness from overwhelming, "I'm just glad you're all right, Tara. Really I am. If it wasn't for you… again… I couldn't have broken through my panic. And it would've gone worse. Even more glad Mister Falk was here when we ported in."

"Sorry, the eating patterns of you slow worlders eludes me," says Heather, when told that Tara is not currently hungry. She does put the food in the desired place, though, to allow Tara to do what she will with it. She smiles when told by Connor that her weird cooking is actually palatable to anyone but herself. She blinks a few times at Jill and then states, "I didn't bring anything for you."

Jill looks askance at Heather, then raises her hands and gives a nervous little smile. "Uh that's okay, don't worry about me. I ate yesterday," the translucent blue girl assures hurriedly. She sniffs at the air and then looks as if she wishes she hadn't. "I'm just glad this place looks so… well-stocked. Better than band-aids and lollipops, anyway."

"Don't worry about it, Heather," says Tara giving her a grin. "It's not like I'm on any real schedule anyway, so odds are you'd be off regardless of what time you showed up." She just waves off Connors comment like it was nothing. "All in a day's work for Awesome Girl."

Connor opens his mouth, but then closes it again, and remains uncommonly silent for the moment. Going back to the bed he was on, he goes and digs out his phone from the drawer next to where he was sleeping. Sitting cross-legged on the bed, he starts to look through some of the photos on the phone. Everyone else can see that around his right hand is a flexible cast to keep his arm straight, made of some kind of semi-clear blue stuff.

Heather nods her head quickly at Tara's explanation before taking a couple of quick steps back. She plays, "Is that your codename, Tara? Awesome Girl?" She shrugs, though, and decides that it's decent. To Jill, she notes, "You only ate yesterday? I eat approximately eight meals per twenty four hour period. Are you sure you are not hungry?"

Jill gives a soft snort at the mention of 'Awesome Girl', then covers her mouth and tries to pretend like she didn't by clearing her throat and looking away. "It's a temporary one until she can come up with something better. Personally, I like it," she explains. Giving Heather a brief double-take, her vivid blue eyes flick down to the tape recorder, then back up to Heather's face, eyebrows knit. "Umm, yeah, I'm sure. Eight meals is a little, uh… I get by on one, usually. Sometimes less."

You can't fool a blind girl like that, unfortunately, and Tara just gives Jill a huge grin. "Well, it's official now. Awesome Girl is on the scene. I'm just going to have to live with it." She, honestly, doesn't sound all that put out by the name. "I mean, I /am/ a girl and I /am/ pretty awesome, so it fits."

Connor finishes off the odd-toast, and reaches for the bottle of water that was close by his spot, saying from his corner, "You're totally correct there. And who are we to tell you any different." Though is sounds slightly subdued at the moment, more thoughtful than anything else. He tilts his head a bit as he watches the others, before saying to Heather, "It's a metabolic thing… you just need more food than we do, Heather."

Heather tilts her head slightly at Connor's explanation and plays, "I think I actually eat less meals than most of you people, though. But it's like I said, your slow-worlder eating patterns are strange to me." The speedster nods her head quickly at Tara and says, "While it lacks subtlety, it's an accurate title." She pauses and then says to Jill, tapping on her recorder, "Have we met?"

"As long I don't have to go by-" Jill catches herself before she can finish the sentence. She's quick on the draw to change the subject though, latching first onto Connor's comment. "Metabolism, right. Like Chloe eats more too 'cause she moves so fast." Jill's eyes flick down to the recorder then back up to Heather. "No, no I don't think so. I'm Jill. If we'd met, I think you'd remember me, right?" She gives a chuckle, shrugging and jerking a thumb to the center of her chest. "I'm hard to miss."

"Yeah," Tara concurs. "Not many goo girls around. Unless you count July, but she graduated and is more plastic than goo." The way she talks is like talking as if somebody's a redhead or a brunette. Nothing unusual around here.

Connor mutters rather wryly, "Why do I suddenly feel like the least normal thing in the room?" Chuckling a bit more as he finishes off the water bottle, and then crushes it down before adding it to the recycling bin.

"I think I would journal it if I had already met you, so I would remember," plays Heather, before she rewinds her machine and plays the pre-recorded standard introduction that she always gives for herself, "Heather Brown, codename: Timeslip." She tilts her head at Connor and responds to his question, "In my experience, it is hard to tell here whether you are ever the least unusual or most unusual person in any room."

"*You're* the least normal?" Jill balks at Connor, giving him a disbelieving little 'guh' noise and rolling her eyes. "It's not as if… you…" Her attention rapidly wanes, trying to reply but she keeps looking down at Heather's recorder. "That is… Okay, how are you *doing* that?"

"I don't think you'd say you're the least normal if you've ever seen Jill eat," Tara says. Not that she would know what that looks like, mind you. She's just going on supposition and hearsay. "You guys seem all normal to me. Except for Heather. She's just weird. But in a good way."

Connor motions with one hand towards Heather, "Heather talks so fast that you can't hear her. Even when she slows down enough, it's nearly impossible for someone with normal hearing to understand it. So she got a device that will record her, and she can play it back at normal speed. It's the best way for her to communicate with anyone, Jill. You have to understand… for Heather? Each word I'm saying is drug out like some kind of strange whale-song. She can understand it all, but it takes a lot of patience on her part. That she's here should speak a lot towards how concerned she's been for us."

The speedster fiddles with her recording device a bit as Connor speaks and she nods, agreeing with what he's saying. "I'm very concerned, and I'm sorry for any involvement I had in your injuries. And this is what you sound like to me when I am listening normally." She doesn't usually do this, because she finds double-slow speak to be unhearable and boring, a low moan sounds from the tape, so low that it is like a thrum, "Heeeeettttthhhhheeeeerrrrr taaaaalksssss sssssooooo fffffaaaaasssst tzzzzzaaaaat heeeeeooooo kaaaaannnnnt heeeeer huuuuur." It is nearly incomprehensible, just like her own high squeak speak is. She looks down at the tape recorder and back up to check reactions and make sure that it's playing. "I should complete my sleep cycle, but get better." She waves her hand and starts to head towards the exit.

Her eyes still fixed on the recorder, Jill's expression deepens into a confused frown, then twists into slow consideration, and ends up with tacit understanding. Maybe. That was a lot of information to take in so fast. "Huh," she concludes in a quiet, impressed voice. She remains silent as Heather just picks up and leaves, though she waves back because it seems like the thing to do. "Maybe you were onto something there, Connor…"

Tara waves a red hand at Heather. "Thanks for the food," she says, although really it's going to be given to somebody else who can appreciate Heather cuisine. "Yeah," she explains to Jill. "I used to be her roommate at first. It was really weird at first but she grows on you."

Connor ends up having a brief discussion with one of the aides and then after a nod he grins to the girls and walks on over, "Well… I'm cleared. Just the usual muscle fatigue from using my stuff, and a fresh dose of my meds to put my brain back on even ground." Reaching up he pats Jill's shoulder softly, "It was a joke… to be honest, there's not a person who comes here who doesn't have issues. But like I said before. That's what makes it a good place… otherwise, we'd feel alone. Well… except T. She'd still be kicking butt and taking names."

"I am constantly out-weirded," the boneless, organless collection of identical blue-tinted amorphous cells in Converse sneakers reflects without a hint of irony. She returns the gesture after a moment of decision, patting the shoulder of Connor's shirt with two fingers. "Good, I'm sure you'll be all healed up in no time. But you," she begins, regarding Tara with half-narrowed eyes and a shaken index finger. "Stay put until you're better, okay?"

"Yeah," Tara says sardonically, "Like I really want to parade around naked for everybody. Thanks for the books though, I'm sure I'll find something that I'd enjoy reading in that pile."

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