Candy For The Injured

Participants:

Bowen.jpg Cheusia.jpg

Date: 11/4/10
Location: EW: Infirmary
Synopsis: Bowen brings in one of the tanner apprentices who was injured and not only sees Cheusia in action as a trauma Healer, but also finds an unexpected salve for his own old wound… turning his feelings up a notch for her just when he didn't think they could have gotten any stronger.
Rating: PG-13
Logger: Bowen


But perhaps an hour before dinner, just in time for someone to lose their appetite if they are so bothered by such things, Bowen arrives long before he is due to arrive at the end of Cheusia’s shift. He brings her a gift, and not a pleasant one considering the amount of blood loss coloring Bowen’s clothes. Cradled in his arms is a young pre-teen or barely teen boy perhaps twelve or thirteen. In the boy’s gut (a dangerous scant bit of space above his spleen) is a tanning knife buried to the hilt, which given the respective size of each, nearly comes out through the boy’s back. There is also a sickly smell to both, that of the tanning vats, and the boy bears the unmistakable look of having had some boiling liquid splattered across part of his face, jaw, and neck and shoulder and some of his upper arm. He appears limp and unconscious as Bowen, as much of a run as the stocky tanner can do under his burden, rushes him into the Infirmary wordlessly, eyes scanning for the first available Healer be it Che herself, or some other Journeyman, or even an Apprentice, knowing that the boy’s life was in danger.

The Infirmary before dinner usually dies down and empties out the patients who came in claiming they could not work because of some mysterious ailment on the days with something that was not agreeable for them to work with. This leaves Cheusia checking up in a few of those in their beds and deeming them ready to leave and finishing as Bowen enters. Though it's the sound of surprise from some of the more squeamish apprentices that draws her attention to the man and then quickly taking in the state of the boy. "Bowen. Cot." The closest cot to the door is always open for the worst of injuries, or, at least on Che's watch because of the fact that something like that may happen. Instructions are given to the apprentices who quickly find the supplies that the Healer has given off right away as she cleanses her hands before making her way over to the instructed cot. "What happened?"

Bowen first looks at the apprentice who made the noise and then to Che who gave the order, and the tanner doesn’t need to be told twice before moving over to the cot in question and in a manner more gentle than anyone would think a stocky man like Bowen could be (though if they’d seen him with his runner, they wouldn’t be surprised) he settles the injured boy on the cot and steps back a pace. Still there to answer questions and help if he can, but back far enough to be out of the way of anyone needing to get in around the bed, at least on his side. Despite Bowen’s strength and build, carrying a boy that age all the way from the vats, which are set out of smelling range to begin with, is bound to leave him a little breathless, and he sounds it when he finally speaks in clipped phrases, “Curin’ wuhter … got splattered on ‘im … twisted ‘round … an’ stumbled back … inta ‘nuther ‘pprentice … whut had ‘is skinnin’ knife out an’ fell on ‘im.” It was actually a little more clumsy and dramatic than that, really, chock full of a comedy of errors, if one were to think such things comedic, but it all happened so fast and Bowen didn’t see it all. Plus, Bowen’s not one to really paint a melodramatic picture of events in the first place. His expression is grim, but the only indication of genuine worry or compassion for the boy is in his blue eyes as he watches the emergency team go into action.

Cheusia is by the boy's side without hesitation, her hands instantly moving to his tunic and ripping it so to expose the wound as the apprentices all filter in with the supplies to help. Despite their squeamish nature, they are actually helpful and not fainting at the sight of the boy (One would think that their dramatics are all a show at this point). There's a gesture and one apprentice leans in to put pressure on the wound while Che continues to give verbal instructions on what she's doing, and why. And why each one is doing what she tells them, though it is clipped and filled with more medical terms for the apprentices and not really directed to Bowen. So when the story is given, more orders are given out on how to treat his face, but no one moves to work on that as the knife is far more important. "Doesn't look like he got anything we should worry about… Otherwise we'd be cutting him open." This is to Bowen. Only briefly do grey eyes seek his before they move to remove the knife, keeping constant pressure on the wound while one apprentice preps the needle and thread. And said apprentice will be doing her first stitching job. Poor boy.

Slowly but surely, Bowen’s breathing from the long trek here gets a bit back to normal. At some point in the emergency patchwork being carried out, he remembers to take his hat off and holds it in his work-roughed hands. He remains out of the way, however, and seems content not to ask any questions over the medical jargon or instructions given out to the apprentices. He is not the boy’s father, and isn’t even really in charge of the boy since he’s not a Journeyman Tanner himself, so while he cares, he figures it’s not his need to know the particulars. It is only after Che states the boy’s condition not being a bad as it looks that Bo’s shoulders relax slightly and he nods. He steps away then, closer to the door, though doesn’t seem ready to leave just yet. Perhaps lingering just long enough for the Healers to get more work in and make sure there’s nothing more serious going on that he has to take a more serious prognosis back to the other tanners with, or perhaps he is just happy to have whatever time he can get with Che, even under such dire circumstances. Maybe both.

The work continues without much hitch, Che offering assistance to the apprentice stitching up the wound before the numbweed is applied and then she informs them on how to properly wrap him with the bandage. There's a shifting of her position as she settles down onto the cot, lifting the boy only to rest his head upon her lap, this is to help elevate him while the bandage is being applied. And then, she's quietly tending to his burn and giving soft instructions to the listening apprentices. The burns are all covered and treated after a moment and then, when all is said and done the apprentices all quietly clean up the area and resume previous activities. Che on the other hand, has not really moved from her spot.

As the emergency turns into something of mere ‘calm urgency’ and less ‘critical urgency’ Bowen seems to relax more and more each passing moment. He watches Che settle in with the unconscious boy’s head lifted to her lap as she works on him and his burns next. As the apprentices move around and clean up and continue their duties, Bowen stays where he is, too. He opens his mouth, presumably to ask a question about the boy’s prognosis, but shuts it as the numbweed begins to take the pain away and the boy begins to stir awake, his breathing less of a slumbering rhythm as he blinks his big brown eyes opened up at the Healer holding his head. He looks confused, but works to swallow before trying to speak. Bowen is dutifully quiet, not wanting to startle the lad any more than he already might be.

Cheusia keeps her attention on the boy, her grey eyes focusing entirely on him as she brushes back his hair. It is more of a move to comfort the boy as he begins to wake. "Hey." She greets softly, "take a minute before you say anything. Don't move to much, either… You've got some stitches in your side and you're bandaged. Do you remember what happened?" She only glances away for a moment and gestures for Bowen to come closer with a tilt of her head.

The boy recloses his eyes, swallowing a little more and relaxes a bit, too, from the initial tension of waking up in the Infirmary. He reopens his eyes just as Bowen carefully and slowly makes his way to the side of the cot on the same side as Cheusia is sitting, his hat still in his hands, and somewhat touched at how gentle she’s being with the kid. A very different reaction than his own mother would have had with Bowen. “I … uh … we were … tossin’ around one of the bovine skulls we got out of the heap, ma’am, and it ended up in the vat, splashing me,” he says glancing between her and Bowen, tension easing back into his shoulders. He licks his lips, pausing in his explanation with that uneasy expression for Bowen, who undoubtedly could get him in a lot of trouble. “Y’j’st tekit easy now, son,” Bowen murmurs in that husky voice of his, trying to be reassuring that as far as Bowen is concerned, he’s not in any more trouble than what he’s already experienced. Being splattered and then accidentally stabbed is consequence enough for horsing around and probably all the lesson and reprimand the kid needs, or so Bo reasons anyway. Nodding, the boy continues, “it burned and I twisted away and stumbled over something,” probably a bench, or a bucket, who knows, maybe his own two feet considering he was half blind from the pain of the boiling liquid, “and then …” his eyes go to the bandage at his side, not really sure exactly what happened after that, since that’s about when he passed out. His voice trails off.

With children, Che is generally gentle and soft and usually more cheery. Though with this boy, it isn't likely that he'll be wanting to make jokes right at the moment. She nods quietly, gingerly stroking his hair and attempting to keep him from panicking as he recalls what happened. She only glances at Bo when the boy does, smiling briefly at the man before her gaze drifts back down. "Okay.. That's good enough. How are you feeling? Anything else hurting? Or did you want something to drink? Or a candy?" Yes. Candy is normally for the children, but Max is the exception (if only for the fact that he did whine about it).

As Cheusia gently strokes back the boy’s hair something inside Bowen stirs, cracks, and gives way, and he just, well, kind of stares at her. Even as she watches the boy and listens to him, Bowen’s attention seems fixed on the Journeywoman, not the child. The boy hesitates to answer, though not out of fear of getting in trouble now, just more thoughtfully assessing what is hurting and what isn’t. He’ll murmur something about his upper arm still stinging some, though not as much, and perhaps just that particular apprentice didn’t lather on enough numbweed or something relatively simple. No one’s perfect, so there is bound to be an ache or sting or two that he explains, though by far he is feeling much better and says so, as the moments tick by. “Water, mum? I mean, ma’am,” he corrects quickly, and then licks his lips, “Y’got candy?” hope springing to life in the boys brown eyes as he stares up at her. Bowen smiles faintly to that, blinking out of his reverie and long-held study of his woman with a boy in her arms, trying to work out in his head what about all that looks so damn desirable to him, in an emotional sense of course, not otherwise, especially since the kid is hurt. Bowen isn’t the most self-aware of men. So, he’ll likely be chewing on it for awhile unless something or someone points it out. The tanner lifts his hat back to his head, and says softly, “Reckon, I oughtta go tell th’ Journeymen Willum’s gonna be okay. How long will ‘e need t’stay, Che?” Not in a one to suggest he demands the boy be put back to work as soon as possible. Quite the opposite in fact. He’ll probably tell the Journeymen Willum needs to be in the Infirmary a good two or three days longer than whatever timeframe Che gives.

Cheusia smiles down at the boy and nods, "we'll get that rewrapped, then." She promises. A soft chuckle slips out as he calls her mmother. "Mhm. I'll get you some, don't move." Not that he may really feel up to moving. His head is lifted gently and she moves to slide out from under him. She looks to Bowen and nods, "Four days. But he shouldn't work for another sevenday. We don't want him to strain the stitches or his burns." She leans over to gently pat Bowen's head before she steps away. It doesn't take long for her to return with the candy.

“Thank you, ma’am,” Willum says, and there’s enough numbweed in place that he doesn’t wince as Cheusia slips out from under him. Bowen smirks faintly at the head-pat, but watches her leave to get the candy a little more than he might usually. His blue eyes going to her bum as she walks off. Meanwhile, Willum’s eyes go a bit big when she gives the number of days he’ll need to stay there and be out of work, and Bowen is shaking his head at Willum, “Don’t fret, son. It’ll all still be thar when ya get back. Mebbe ya could even help me with some light stitchwork here in bed if yer feelin’ up ta it an’ th’ Healers are fine with it.” When Che gets back with the candy, Willum looks eagerly at her, and Bowen waits until she passes by him to ask softly, “Are ya still endin’ yer shift at th’ same time?” Suddenly wishing the end of their respective days could get here sooner, for whatever reason. Bowen, himself, doesn’t rightly know.

Cheusia smiles even wider and offers the candy out to Willum so that he can take it himself, being that he is old enough to do it himself. To Bowen, she looks over curiously and nods. "Mhm. He should be fine on his own now and," there's a gesture to the other Journeyman who snuck in through the back, "he's here now." She leans in to ruffle Willum's hair as well. "Now you learned why you don't play around those sort of things. I want you to come see me after you start working again as well, okay? Just to make sure everything is okay and I want to see how you're doing. And if you're good, you'll get two pieces of candy." Her hand is then offered out to Bowen. "Ready?"

Willum takes the offered candy with a smile. “Thank you, ma’am,” he says politely again, and puts it in his mouth to suck on quietly as he listens and then nods to what Che has to say next. He grins a bit, well, as much as he can with a mouth sucking on a piece of candy, when she talks of getting two pieces of candy. Bowen nods once to Willum, smirking a bit at the candy seeming to make everything all better, and then he looks to Che, taking her offered hand with a glance for the other Journeyman who came in through the back, “Ayup,” he says, and then looks back at her. “Mind stoppin’ back t’th’ workbenches?” that being the tanning area, or at least the least smelling area of the tanning workspace set aside for them. “I really should tell ‘em Willum’s gonna be aw-right.” His thumb strokes over the back of her hand, “And then we can mebbe get a basket o’food an eat in, tonight,” with a twinkle of meaning in his eye.

Cheusia grins down at the boy as all seems well now and then gives Bowen's hand a tight squeeze. "We can do that. Is his family here in the Weyr, too?" She asks curiously, meaning to lead him out of the Infirmary. "That'd be lovely. The room is a nice place to eat, too.." She gives him a curious little look, smiling sweetly and then making to lead them on their way.

“Don’t rightly know,” Bowen states earnestly, “Th’ Journeymen prolly do. We’ll ask when we get there.” And then he’s winking at her as she leads him out of the Infirmary, muttering more to himself than to anyone else – including her (though she may hear it anyway) – “Among oth’r things it’s a good place fer.” Incorrigible. Utterly incorrigible. And the couple are headed out with that, presumably to close the loop with the other tanners on Willum’s status, and inform the boy’s family if they are here, and then back to their room with only a brief stop in the kitchens first.


Closing Credits Theme Music: Brad Paisley - "She's Everything"


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