|Iris Lark||The rain that has been threatning for the last few days finally starts to fall. It's not an acidic rain that can sometimes be the bane of any Wastelander, out without shelter, just fine, large drops of water giving the dry land a short reprieve.
Iris sits on an exam table, the door to the Clinic wide open as she gazes out into the darkness. The soothing sound of rain hitting a puddle puts a smile on her face. Underneath the table, oblivious to anything right now is a little pink piglet, fast asleep.
|Percy|| The sound of footsteps trudging through the mud is distant at first. Perhaps a neighbour or someone high on chems stumbling through the night? No... perhaps not. For the trudging sound grows louder and more constant -- heavy boots pressing into the mud pathways of the abode that is Shantytown.
Eventually, someone does indeed round the corner. Standing at an inch over six feet, the lean man covered mostly in a thick duster groans in mild despair. "Sorry," He calls out immediately -- voice strangely accented. British, for those playing at home. Naturally, having taken a step into the clinic means that muddy boots now dirty the floor! Something he at least seems to be aware of. "I won't take another step in, I swear. I mean, I can just stand here until all the mud dries." Percy clears his throat, removing an old looking hat to reveal his face in full. "This is the clinic, right?" He queries, taking a moment to glance around with his cool blue eyes. "...please don't tell me I wandered into the brothel again. It's hard to see anything out there in this weather."
|Iris Lark||Iris glances down at the floor and then that gaze travels slowly up until she's looking at Percy's face. She's distracted for a few fractions of a second before she slips off the table and to her feet. "Oh, don't mind the floor, it gets a cleaning at least three or four times a day." She prattles, obviously nervous around a stranger, but trying hard to hide it. "Blood and stuff, you understand?"
She gestures to a chair that is cuddled up to a table in the corner and plunks down two cups that she sprinkles some petals and leaves in. "Come in now, have a seat and I'll make us some tea. That will warm you up a bit." She doesn't make a comment about the brothel, she figures she doesn't look like a woman of the night, at least not one with any fashion sense.
|Percy|| "Even at these hours?" Percy replies, glancing about. "Well, yeah. I mean - I understand. Are you open all day and night?" The man purses his lips before moving forward. A large bag that is slung across his shoulder is casually discarded and left by the front door. "Tea would be lovely, thank-you. This is actually quite the reception. I had heard that the Doctor here was one of a kind. But I certainly didn't expect to be greeted with tea upon entry."
Walking forward, Percy discards his heavy wet duster to reveal the white collared long-sleeve shirt tucked into slacks underneath. Moving to roll up his sleeves, he takes a seat as instructed, crossing his right leg over his left politely.
"Doctor Lark, right? Doctor Iris Lark?" Relaxing in the chair, his smile remains. "I'm Percy Cooke. It's good to meet you."
|Iris Lark||"I'm open when I'm needed, even if sometimes it takes me out from my bed." Iris says, watching a pot until it boils. Really she should know better. When he speaks again she turns to watch him fold himself into a chair and introduce himself. "Percy Cooke, it's a pleasure to meet you, but please ..just call me Iris. I wasn't schooled in a traditional sense, so I'm..not really a doctor. I prefer Healer." The water is steaming now and she brings the kettle to the table, pouring hot water into the flowers and leaves. "It'll take a little bit to steep."|
|Percy|| Percy watches Iris carefully as she busies herself and preps deliciousness. "Healer? Alright then. Iris it is." Nodding at the indication that the tea needed to steep, Percy takes this as a chance to unfold his legs and lean down. By doing so he spots the little pig underneath sleeping. "That is very cute." Said with a small chuckle, before sitting back up. "That's actually what I had heard too. But from what I can understand, you're making a very good fist of this healing gig. It's not easy, you know. There's a colossal amount of science to get your head around." Percy lifts his fingers to gesture the 'mind blown' pose.
"So why are you out here, anyway? Quite literally in the mud. Instead of the nice walls of El Dorado proper."
|Iris Lark||Iris glances over at Bacon, her expression softening as a smile curves her lips upward. A moment passes and then she shifts her gaze back to Percy and she leans on the table, her chin cradled in her palm. "I've been Healing people since I was very young, if you do something enough you'll take to it eventually." She crosses her legs and decides to stay slightly vague for now. "I'm not a citizen, for one, and when I came here at first I wasn't sure if I was going to stay. I was..on the run, a bit." She shrugs that away and offers Percy a slightly sheepish grin.|
|Percy|| "But not anymore?" Percy wishes to clarify, raising an eyebrow at the 'on the run' part. "You raise a solid point about a lack of citizenship. Is it truly that difficult to attain? Surely the local government would just love to have someone of your skills healing them. That said," His smile broadens as he glances around. Then outside. "There is something noble about what you're doing, I think. Everyone needs help, after all. Not just those that can afford it."
Standing up from his seat on the chair, Percy make a motion to move around the room. With hands tucked behind his back he glances into the various examination rooms and the equipment, if any, which can be seen.
A long exhale is made as he rounds back to his seat. "Are you hiring, per chance? Or taking volunteers?"
|Iris Lark||"I haven't tried to get citizenship if we're being honest, I'm happy here, even if it isn't the most pristine or proper looking place." Iris says, picking up her glass and taking a sip of her tea. The clinic is bare bones, and most of what Iris uses are home remedies. She'll do surgeries, set bones and birth babies, but it's not in some fancy stainless steel surgical suite. She watches him move around, gazing into the different rooms. "I am always hiring, of a sort. You're welcome to work here and keep whatever caps you make. I don't impose rules here, I just want people to be safe and healthy. If a person can't pay, I do not turn them away."
She goes still for a moment and then she sets her tea down. "I'm not on the run anymore, as far as I know, I am not important enough for the people I ran from to track me down." She rests a hand on the table and her fingers tap idly as she speaks. "I didn't break any laws, at least any of the laws here."
|Percy|| Reaching forth to take hold of his tea, Percy takes a sip. Eyebrows raise in honest surprise, as he looks at the liquid. "Well, if you practice healing as well as you make tea, then we should be fine." His head tilts a little, before he nods in understanding. "I guess we all obtain a checkered past if we live long enough." Taking another sip of his tea, he relaxes into his chair.
"Excellent. If I'm being honest, I haven't practiced medicine in such a routine fashion for... over a year or so." He lifts up his spare hand, "Don't misunderstand - I have worked on patients as recently as last week. But in an office like this? It's a step up from what I'm used to." Taking another sip of his warm liquid, Percy feels his body start to warm up. "I studied and practiced medicine within the heart of NCR for nearly a decade. Classically trained with what books are left, along with training and mentoring from very senior professionals. After a few years serving as a combat medic in the Ranger Corps though, I pulled the pin. Had enough." He frowns briefly, before it washes away into a soft smile.
"I'd be more than happy to give you any tips. Or answer questions. If you want to, of course. You're still the boss."
|Iris Lark||"I think you've plenty to offer here, and since you've told me a bit, I'll be honest back." Iris says, folding her hands into her lap. Her gaze strays there and that is where it remains while she continues to speak. "I was born in a Legion encampment, and women there are treated as slaves. I don't know who my parents were, but I was raised in the triage tents and was trained to work there from the time I was old enough to fetch and carry." Her fingers fidget as she watches them, her tone bittering slightly. "A few months ago, the camp was attacked by raiders, I'm not exactly sure *who*, but in the carnage a group carried me off. One of the group was a bear of a man named Achilles, and he's kept me safe since." She finally looks up at Percy, her eyes brimming a bit with tears. "He brought me here, and keeps watch over me still."|
|Percy|| Percy remains steadfast in his seated position, the polite man simply looking at Iris with legs folded and tea nestled into his lap. His blue eyes take in every emotion and detail that exudes from her story. "I'm... sorry to hear that." He finally replies, looking down into his brew. "I know the Legion. Quite well, in fact. I was dispatched with Rangers many times to punch holes in their camps. Guerrilla warfare type engagement. I've seen first hand what they do." Still nursing his warm drink, he takes a long breath before looking back up to Iris. "It's... well. Very, very, VERY good that you got out of there, Iris. The Legion is evil. There is no other way I can describe it. This man, Achilles? He certainly saved you in more ways than one. Hopefully I will soon get to meet him myself." Finishing off his tea, he places it back onto the table.
Standing up, he walks back over to where his bag lay on the ground. "So. Now that we know a bit about ourselves, why don't you tell me what sort of practice and care you provide? I see equipment to help for fractures and surgeries, for instance. Do you help deal with chem addiction too? Radiation treatment?"
|Iris Lark||"I've a stock of RadAway, should someone come in with those types of problems." Iris says, getting to her feet and walking around the small space slowly. "In the past few months I've dealt with burns, bullet wounds, broken bones and various other ailments." She offers Percy a smile and shrugs diffidently. "I haven't yet found myself in over my head."
"I have chems, and I do sell them, but..not as much as others might. If someone is addicted, I would likely offer them the chem in question and try to slowly wean them off of it." She folds her arms loosely and sighs. "If you've a speciality, or something you're more comfortable treating, let me know. We get everyone from the whores in town to the elderly who can't afford to go anywhere else."
|Percy|| "All sounds good." Percy replies about the roadway. " And no, no specialty, to be honest." Wrinkling his nose, a glance goes to Iris as he leans against one of the doorways that leads into an examination room. "I have an interest in cutting edge biotech medicine and study, but... well, to be honest, that's not really a field I hope or expect to find here in Shantytown. We could have bigger issues then." With a smirk, he shrugs.
"I'm just happy to help out at this stage. So anything goes, really. I like your idea of cycling people off of chems, too. That's very smart and a help to nearly everyone about. A clinic I worked in not far out from the Boneyard had a policy of cold turkey. The results weren't... as pleasant." Wince.
"Anyway. So. I'm brand new to Shantytown and this area as a whole. Where do you suggest I retire? Are there local hotels or anything?"
|Iris Lark||"There are rooms you can rent, but not this late at night." Iris says, leaning against one of the tables. "The tables out here are not comfortable but the beds in the exam room are, you're welcome to bunk here for the night." A flicker of interest lights her face up when he mentions biotech and she offers him a smile. "Remind me at some point to introduce you to Vuk, when we both get some rest, all right?"|
|Percy|| "Vuk." Percy repeats, committing the name to memory. "No problem, Iris. And thanks for the free bunk for the night. You're something else. Seriously. I don't know many other people in the Mojave that would let a stranger into their business and let them crash for the night!" Laughing heartily, the man offers a casual salute before heading into one of the examination rooms.
"Good night, Iris. And let me make you breakfast or something? It's the least I can do for... well, all of this." Percy gestures around him, before falling onto the bed in a near collapse. He is done, it looks! Exhausted!
|Iris Lark||"We'll see what the morning brings." Iris replies, drawing the curtain around the room shut. "Sleep well."|