|Theodore||The summer sun has finally set, but what was a refreshing breeze has quickly become annoying gusts of dirt, sand, and dust. Most sensible people are indoors, whether that be home or otherwise. Someone, however, is heading into the clinic. This is evident even before the door opens as the person thumps against the side of the building that is downwind; sheltering there for a few breaths before rounding the corner, opening the door, and pulling it shut with some obvious effort and a resounding thud. The man, back turned, takes a few heaving breaths before even bothering to rest his laser musket beside the door. He takes off his hat-his efforts to keep it brand new were not in vain, but the signs of time were quickly wearing their way into it-and drops it to the floor before he calls out, "Iris. Are you here?" Theodore's voice sounds exhausted. Thin. More weary that quiet, which is uncharacteristic for the energetic visionary. Turning away from the door, he reveals a dusty face streaked by the paths of sweat.|
|Iris Lark||Iris walks out from the back room, her feet bare, clad in a long shift. "Who's out there?" She asks, squinting into the semi-dark. "Teddy, is that you?" She walks forward and puts both of her hands on Theodore's shoulders. "Are you okay?"|
|Theodore||The moment that Theodore sees Iris's attire, he turns his head to be polite, but when she puts her hands on his shoulders he looks back at her. His eyes have dark circles, he shivers a touch suddenly, and he looks cold even though his skin is radiating heat. He is feverish. Possibly breaking, if the sweat is a sign, but clearly not in a state of good health. "Iris, I'm really sorry to bother you at this time of night," he begins as he wraps his arms around himself; a gesture which generates little warmth given his armor. "I thought it was healing nicely, but now I'm not sure. I think it's gotten infected. I'm feeling a little... under the weather." He rubs his lips together apprehensively and swallows. "It's freezing in here," he adds as his eyes sweep around the room.|
|Iris Lark||Iris glances around and leads Theodore towards an empty bed. "It's actually quite warm in here." She notes quietly, resting the back of her hand against his head. "You've a fever." She frowns and moves with him, trying to help him up on the bed. "C'mon now Teddy, get up here and lie down. Let me take a look at your injury." She says, her brow furrowed. "You should have come sooner."|
|Theodore||"It was healing nicely." He frowns as he starts to pull his duster off. "At first." His motions lack their usual grace, but he manages to remove the outer garment, fold it in half, and drop it down beside his hat. The armor is a bit more of a challenge, but he gets through it. Arm guards thump down into the floor, the chestpiece gets unstrapped, and he sits down-more heavily than he intended-to lift it over his head and set it to the side. The shirt of his uniform is removed to reveal a sweaty tshirt beneath it all, which has to be peeled off. His skin is deathly pale, but that could be quite normal given his complexion. Exhausted, he lays back onto the bed and closes his eyes.
Theodore's chest is amateurishly bandaged. Beneath the gauss is an area on his sternum where it looks like some bullet fragments punched through his armor and hit him. The fragments have been removed, or so the novice would believe. Given the pus oozing from the wound and the angry red sunflare of infection that circles it, there is likely one or more lurking below the surface still. Fortunately, nothing punctured his sternum.
|Iris Lark||"Damnit Teddy!" Iris says, her face showing a rare flash of anger. "This was shoddily done, why didn't you come to me?" She hisses out a breath and starts to gather some tools, her hands shaking as she moves. "This is going to hurt, enough that I hope you pass out from the pain." She eyes him as she speaks. "I'm going to have to drain the puss and get whatever might be in there." A sob catches in her throat as she sees the red. "This could taint your blood, that could kill you. You should have come sooner."|
|Theodore||At first, Theodore lifts his head to respond, but getting to the clinic and half stripping seems to have really drained him. His head falls back onto the table-spilling some of usually neat hair out of its bun-and he replies with his eyes shut. "It was a flesh wound. I cleaned out the fragments and bandaged it. You were so busy. Completely inundated with patients with situations far more pressing than my own. It was healing nicely. Scabbing, even. It was only the night before last that I noticed it had degenerated. I had hoped a night of proper rest would help, but I woke up this evening and saw its state had become worrisome." He opens his darkly circled eyes and attempts to focus on her. "And... I'm sorry. I should have paid closer attention."|
|Iris Lark||"I don't care how fucking busy I ever am." Iris leans in, a slight frown on her face. "You come to me when you get wounded. I'm going to save your life, and if you throw what I'm about to do back into my face by allowing yourself to get this wounded again? I'll finish you my damn self." She hisses, her hands moving to drain the first wound. Her hands shake slightly as she works, afraid to dig into the wound or squeeze too hard, not wanting to cause pain. She knows it's necessary though, so she pushes herself, she causes pain. She pulls out the first fragment and drops it in a bowl, the sound loud against the sound of Theodore's breathing and the Healer's sniffles.|
|Theodore||Theodore might be a pretty boy, but he is not a bitch. Despite that, he cannot help but hiss, gasp, and even flinch a few times as Iris works. He never complains. He never lashes out. When the worst of it is over-no further fragments present-he sucks in a deep breath and releases a long, unsteady sigh of relief. It is little wonder infection set in. The fragment is a piece of a round fired through a super mutant's minigun. It might as well have been a syringe full of bacteria shut straight into his tissue. "It's not over, is it?" His voice very quietly. "Tell me you're not about to pour ice-cold hydrogen peroxide into the wound?" Whether he is teasing or serious in his question is unclear in his exhaustion.|
|Iris Lark||"Unfortunately, I'm going to have to, and then I'm going to poultice pack the wound." Iris mutters, turning to wash her hands and pull the mortar from a higher shelf. She settles on a stool next to his bed and begins the slow grind of herbs, her hair falling over her eyes. The curtain of hair keeps Theodore from seeing her eyes as she works, and she's happy about that right now because she's tearing up a bit. Setting the mortar aside she pulls out a glass bottle and braces a hand on Theodore's shoulder. "Okay, close your eyes, and lets get this part over with."|
|Theodore||"Poultice pack?" Theodore's half question is accompanied by his left hand absently moving to hover over the wound defensely. "Is that necessary?" He looks feverish. And afraid. Maybe he thought he was going to get a bandage at this point and pushed out the door. Maybe the fever is playing tricks on him. "Now that the- the-" his eyes are a touch wild as they look around for the fragment and settle on its dish. "The thing has been removed, there's no need for the leeches, is there?" His right hand misses twice before he manages to place it on her arm in order to plead more emphatically. "Please. I didn't mean it. I didn't." His eyes are half focused on her face at best.|
|Iris Lark||"No leeches, Teddy, but this hydrogen peroxide is going to sting." Iris warns, shifting to take his hand with her free one before she starts to pour. She leans in, prepared to hold him down if he bucks, not wanting him to hurt himself more.|
|Theodore||He tries. He absolutely tries. One hand tries to keep her from getting to the wound while the other is trying to hold her hand back, but he is so weakened that it is as easy to force his limbs aside as if they were that of a child. "Ple-" The word leaves his lips desperately as the liquid is about to pour from the bottle, then bites down hard as it hits his skin. He no longer fights, but he tries to cover the wound with both hands. "I'm sorry!" he pleads over and over, not seeming to fully comprehend what is going on, or apologizing for some slight.|
|Iris Lark||When she's satisfied that the wounds are cleaned out as best as she is able, Iris sets down the bottle, taking both of Theodore's hands and holding on to them. She can't help the tears that spill down her cheeks as she sits there, holding both of his hands until he calms. She gets to her feet and releases him, smoothing his hair out of his face and gently wipes at his forehead with a cool cloth. She goes still for a few moments, her eyes watching him and the vibrant red of his wounds. Then the spell is broken and she moves, scooping the poultice into the bandage to be applied. Her hands dip into a salve pot and the soothing, thick liquid is spread across the angry red skin gently.|
|Theodore||Soothed by the sound of the wind and the kindness of her touch, Theodore calms. The pain and struggle did no favors for his fever, which has him burning hot to the touch. With the infection treated, however, it will likely break with rest.
An endless sea of quiet is interrupted by the occasional comment or movement that mostly does not make sense. A sudden kick of the foot as if to shove away something nipping at his heel. The raising of his arms to block an incoming attack that does not exist. Words of anger. Words of fear. Words of defiance. At one point he opens his eyes wide, gives Iris an intense, dead serious look, and tells her, "I will never let you claim the orb, fiend. Never." It is not long after that he is given a true mercy. Sleep. Shivering, sweaty, much-needed sleep.
|Iris Lark||Iris sighs as he finally falls asleep and she finishes dressing the wound, the poultice ready to suck out any remaining infection. Once his wounds are completely tended she takes a seat in the stool again and watches him sleep, her hands folded in her lap. There is so much she wants to say, but talking to someone who isn't able to answer or understand..it seems silly, or crazy.|