A bad day.
Any other woman would have to take off their stiletto sandals to run, but not Carol. She had perfected a full out run in heels during her time with Tacharan and she only had to slow down for corners as she ran into Duibne Industries to meet a patient. More specifically, Kyle Evans. Didn't Nova just pick him up from the police station over some double murder at Babylon? Does trouble just find him or something?
Carol rounded another corner and ended up in the same wing that Kyle had been admitted to after the Hillman raid. Passing the nurses station with a nod, she walked to the end of the hall and peered into the small glass window on his door. Pushing softly Carol entered the room and about cried.
To say Kyle was in bad shape was an understatement. They had brought him in and stopped the internal bleeding, but his broken ribs had pierced his lungs and filled them up nicely with blood. It was a wonder he didn't drown before security responded to the fire alarm on his office floor. They apparently found him face down, covered in his own blood. Carol wondered briefly where Nova was right now, she wasn't able to get a hold of her yet.
Carol walked up to Kyle's bed and looked down at him. His chest was wrapped up tightly and tubes were going in and out of him - helping him breath and draining various fluids she imagined. The bruising on his neck was pretty obvious though. Someone had attacked him and that someone was a vampire. Carol bit her lip in thought - not Tacharan, that much was for sure. She'd have to ask Simon to look into it and he would because she'd insist because she really liked funny, odd Kyle Evans. So once again she sat on his bed and promised ole Charlie Brown that they'd take care of him.
Carol’s message had been short and to the point. Kyle’s been hurt. Come quickly. And to her surprise, she had, as soon as she got the page. She’d taken off her mobile because no one was allowed to have them in the lab, which was the only reason she hadn’t spoken to Carol directly.
She had a million things to do today, tying up loose ends so she could leave town, and still, for some stupid insane reason, she’d dropped everything, just like that. Maybe Evans was more important to her than she’d thought. Or maybe seeing Kyle was just the right thing to do – she decided not to overthink it.
With a brief nod to Carol, she picked up his chart, flipping through it and frowning, then, finally, really looked at Kyle himself. The bite on his neck was still prominent, obvious. Someone bit him and didn’t care who knew it.
She set the chart on the end table, very carefully, in contrast to her internal urge to break everything in sight. She thought she could do it, too; that she could wield a path of destruction straight to whoever did this. Her voice was dangerously quiet when she spoke.
“What do we know?”
Carol scrolled through the rest of the files and saw nothing out of the ordinary. Whoever it was seemed to be waiting for him - why else would the door lock be broken? She'd have more information once DI went through his computer, but other than that, she was perplexed. Who would attack him? The why seemed obvious, but why wait for him in his office? She looked over at Nova expectantly hoping she'd have some further ideas.
'They said he should be fine, kind of touch and go right now with the organ damage, but no major arteries were damaged, the internal bleeding was worse than the blood loss.' She tried to sound positive, but she had a hard time believing that herself with Kyle laying pale and unconscious in front of them.
Nova wasn’t sure why she bothered asking for more information; she could only seem to process anything subliminally. It wasn’t that she wasn’t listening – when she thought back, she could remember everything Carol had said. But it didn’t truly register.
Sitting down on the edge of the bed opposite Carol, she continued to nod in the appropriate places while staring down at Kyle. Theories of what had happened raced through her mind. Ellis’s companion had only recently tried to snuff her out; maybe Simon had made arrangements to keep that from happening again, and the only way to get to her was through Kyle. She felt a brief flicker of guilt before shaking her head in denial – no, the world didn’t revolve around her. Kyle had enough enemies all on his own; she was along for the ride as much as he was.
The only thing she could muster in response to Carol’s litany was a weak question.
“Who found him?”
Whoever it was might have more information, she thought, even though she wasn’t entirely sure she was ready to deal with whatever that may be. Then she realized she was being stupid – the person who had the most information was Evans himself, and his lack of consciousness had never stopped her from badgering him before. And anyway, she had something else she needed to ask him.
She turned, feeling more lucid already, and made one last request of Carol before taking Kyle’s hand and closing her eyes.
“Can you make sure no one gives him eternity? I think he’d rather skip that whole mess.”
'Security was alerted, the fire alarm had been pulled I guess. I suppose we should be grateful that whoever it was didn't want him to die.' She shrugged, granted he's not far from it, she thought to herself.
As Nova took Kyle's hand, Carol's smile broaden but it faltered when Nova asked about the Eternity. That perplexed Carol - why wouldn't they give him Eternity? It wasn't as if there wasn't a drug to counteract the side effects. She hadn't seen what Kyle had went through after the raid - she had only heard about it. The convulsions, the withdrawal aches and pains; finally they had to knock him out for three days to get through it all. If anyone knew what Kyle wanted, it probably was Nova seeing she witnessed the whole thing.
'Yeah...' Carol said slowly, 'I'll make sure.' She paused a moment and then asked, 'Are you going to do that dream walking thing? Ask him some questions and stuff?'
The sound of the door swished quietly in his head. Someone had walked in and was coming closer to his bed. Trying again to open his eyes, he was rewarded with an unfortunate sight.
Wakie wakie, eggs and bakie.
The sound of the voice made his entire body shudder but it was actually seeing who the voice belonged to was much much worse. Lowering his arm Kyle immediately pushed himself back in his bed until his body touched the cold wall. The figure sat onto the edge of the bed and lowered itself down on one arm.
I wanted to say sorry for...you know.
Kyle reached down, putting his hands at his side and curled his hands up into fists. His knuckles began to turn white as he gripped the bed sheets so hard his arms began to tremble.
I think I got a little out of control there, but you know, it happens to the best of us.
Ellis was curled up, smiling her beautiful smile at Kyle as he tried not to scream. It wasn't so much that she was there, that was bad enough, it was her appearance that was turning his stomach inside out. Her black hair fell down the sides of her face, but he could see where it had matted in some spots, specifically around her neck. She was wearing the same outfit he saw her in before - the white blouse, blue jeans and matching blue jacket. She looked so pretty dressed casually actually and he remembered this thought crossing his mind in his office. It was the black, dried blood that was smeared around her mouth and chin that was the disturbing part. His blood.
Kyle opened his mouth and through gritted teeth said, 'The least you could have done was wash the blood off you.'
Ellis tilted her head with a curious expression. Why would I do that? You didn't.
She nodded towards his hands and Kyle followed her gaze down. His bed was streaked with blood and his hands were covered in it. He lifted his hands to in front of his face and began to scream.
((ooc dream sequence))
Carol had her pegged on the dreamwalking gig; she nodded her head, her jaw working, and after a pause she answered.
“Yeah, I’m going to try. I’m not counting on being able to get much information, though…” What she didn’t say out loud was that she mostly just wanted to hear his voice, even if he was yelling, just to truly make sure he was still with them in some capacity.
“So I’ll be sorta out of it for a bit…”
And with that she plunged in, unable to wait another moment. She was falling forward, vertigo pulling at her stomach, and then suddenly she found solid ground beneath her. Her vision came into focus and she blinked, confused. Wasn’t she just here?
‘Here’ being the corridor leading to Kyle’s hospital room. Had she made it into his dream? Disoriented, she stared at the door, looking for some sort of sign; everything felt so real. Finally she had to rely on logic – being in Kyle’s dream was simply the only explanation that made sense.
Bracing herself with that thought, she pushed open the door, and was greeted with a surfeit of blood and Kyle’s hysterical screams. For one split second she froze, horrified, and then she was sprinting for the bed, slipping and skidding to a halt beside Evans and taking one of his wrists, trying to pry it away from his face so he could see that she was here now, that he was safe. There was no thought to changing the scene, to taking control of the dream and bending it to her will. Nothing was more important than stopping those terrible screams that threatened to tear her heart out; instinct took over reason. She choked out frantic words, babbling, trying to calm him down, a litany of ‘shh’ and ‘Kyle’ and ‘I’m here, I’m here’ as she stroked his arm, leaving streaks of red on his skin. When words failed her she made a helpless little sound in the back of her throat, something like a sob, and it was only then, when her own complete impotence washed over her, that she realized she could do something after all.
At once the scene changed; they were both on a clean white bed, so vast you couldn’t see the edges, surrounded by pillows and the sound of falling water in the distance.
‘It’s all gone, the blood’s all gone, Kyle –look- at me, it’s all a dream, you’re safe now…’
The figurative meaning of bloodied hands were obvious but Kyle never once thought of his life that way. He did what he had to do. It was a path he was not able to deviate from and the consequences of this path never once bothered him. Not until now.
The voices again, a soothing one trying to penetrate deep into his brain, trying to flush out seething stink of what could only be guilt. Kyle Evans led a life of no remorse and selfish abandonment - a characteristic so extreme that not to assume he was overcompensating for something in the past was ridiculous. Kyle began to wipe his hands against the sheets when the voice finally took on a familiar tone.
It was Nova. Oh god, his mind wept as he tried to hide his hands away from her. He couldn't let her see all this blood, he couldn't explain it to her, not now. Then suddenly it was gone - she made it disappear and Kyle choked back on his screams and tried to calm down. He wanted to reach out and grab her yet push her away. Nova had no idea, not an inkling - she couldn't have. Kyle had to begin to form a lie and why not? His entire life was built around them anyway.
She had let him break free of her grip on his hands when it was clear he was trying to pull away and not to take a swing at her; she wasn’t sure, in his state of mind, if he would know her, and while it wasn’t as though he would be able to hurt her, she thought it might make him feel even worse if he lashed out at his girlfriend while still unaware of his surroundings.
When had she started thinking of herself as Kyle’s girlfriend?
Shaking off that thought, she tilted her head, trying to make the eye contact that Evans seemed to be avoiding. When she thought it was alright to talk, she sat back on the bed, resting a hand on his thigh, and half whispered in what she hoped was a calming, if logical, tone.
“Kyle? You’re in the hospital,” again, she thought but didn’t say. “You’re unconscious, and you’re dreaming. Do you understand?”
She thought they should start with the basics and go from there; she would give him more information on his condition once she got him talking and aware.
'Yes. This is Duibne Industries medical facility...I...I understand.' He could feel the fear well up in his throat again but he swallowed hard to banish it.. 'I was in my office. She...'
Kyle now paused in thought. He should tell Nova it was Ellis, there was no reason why not, but why was he hesitating?
'At least...I think it was a woman.'
There it was, the lie. The terror had now fled but in its place was confusion. He was protecting Ellis but why? She knew nothing about what Kyle really was, no one did, but maybe she could relate. Kyle blinked at Nova.
'I don't know who it was.'
The lie began to grow.
Nova tried to hide her disappointment and moved closer to Kyle, resting her fingers on his hand.
“S’okay, don’t worry about that right now. We’ll figure it out.” She, personally, was in favor of doing very bad things to anyone who ever looked at Evans sideways – she’d get to the guilty party sooner or later. Then again, they might be dealing with a pretty large sample size. Evans seemed to have a way of making enemies.
She didn’t waste time chatting with Kyle about revenge, though. There were more important concerns.
“Kyle, in the attack, you lost a lot of blood.” Blunt as ever, Nova continued. “Your kidneys may have been damaged – they’re still functioning or you’d be dead, but they may have sustained injuries. You have several broken ribs and both of your lungs were punctured. You were bleeding internally. The doctors have patched you up, but you’ll need more tests, and possibly more surgeries. Most of all, you’re going to need time to recover.”
She took a steadying breath and continued.
“Eternity can help. It won’t be like last time – we’d use the minimum amount necessary to obtain a full recovery. I won’t bullshit you though – the cravings could come back. I can give you Starburst to help you get over the aftereffects, but at a lower dose. It’s a tough go either way – I’m sorry.”
She gave his hand a squeeze. Her bedside manner left something to be desired, she knew, but she really did sympathize. This wasn’t an easy choice.
“Whatever you decide, I’ll back you up – I’ll tell the doctors what you want and make sure they listen.” She grinned. “I’m good at that.”
Her expression went serious again.
“It’s your choice.”
Ellis had fucked him up but good. How could one woman do so much damage? Couldn't she have just eaten and ran? No, she had to plant her knees into his back and come down on him like a ton of bricks - then added the insult of almost bleeding him dry. So, Eternity and its inevitable withdrawal or a long, painful recovery?
Pain or...more pain.
Kyle looked up into Nova's eyes and then down to her mouth. Well, there was a third choice...
NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO - his mind screamed. He would take the pain and misery of physical therapy or every muscle in his body seizing on him than asking Nova to turn him. Giving it another moment he blurted out his response.
Nova nodded weakly and said nothing, thinking that this one could certainly still surprise her sometimes. She honestly hadn’t thought that he would go for Eternity, not again, not after his last fiasco.
Pulling out of her stunned stupor, she gave a more resolute nod and pulled back.
“Okay. That’s what we’ll do.”
She rose awkwardly to her knees on the endless bed, wobbling a little on the springy surface.
“I need to go – the sooner we start the process, the better.”
Leaning forward, she gave his hand what she hoped was a reassuring squeeze, remembering that he had once said that her bedside manner left something to be desired. She wasn’t good at this nurturing stuff - really, she should be happy that Kyle had given her a problem she could solve, something to do instead of sit and wait while the doctors did their work. Her own little lab rat, who so obligingly managed to get his blood drained and his body broken again and again.
Nova felt sick as she turned to go, stepping through a white mist that hadn’t been there a moment ago.
“Get some rest…” she whispered moments before opening her eyes to the hospital room.
Using that spark of anger,she scrubbed furiously at her eyes and looked over at Carol, her voice coming out in a tired rasp.
“He wants Eternity. He doesn't remember anything.” A pause, as she considered whether or not she believed that, and then she was on her feet. “I have to talk to the doctor.”
She could only have so much on her mind at once. As she left, though, she looked over her shoulder, addressing Carol one last time.
“He thinks it might have been a woman.”
/ooc Nova out, and hopefully Kyle is on the mend!