2007-08-04: Defenses


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Jack comes by the Clinic to get patched up. They talk of a quarantined Saint as well as Peter old and new.

August 4th, 2009


Bat Country Labs

Finally, the quarantine has been lifted on Bat Country. Everyone has been tested and cleared - other than Ali, of course. And Cass is grateful, as she was the last one to go through screening. What with her prolonged contact with Ali, even through protective gear, she wanted to make sure that everyone got cleared and was taken out who could be so that less people could be at risk to contract the disease. The doctor is just packing up to head back to check in and cuddle her baby and Lachlan because she knows that she can without infecting them. Packing a few things up, she lets her hair down and starts winding it back into a loose bun.

You know what's embarassing? Falling asleep in the truck on the way home and getting carried inside. Embarassing.

Not as embarassing as getting stabbed in the back, though.

Jack parks Julia outside and makes his way to the door. A brief conversation with the guards follows.

Guard A: Halt! Code in, please.
Jack: Wot? I gots bad ears. Speak up, boy-o.
Guard B: Code in. Now.
Jack: Well you're a bunch o' rude fuckers, aren't ya? Here's my code. I'm the Shepherd, and I gots a knife wound in me back. Now step aside before I smash your tiny baby penis.
Guard A: Uh. Guard B: Uhm.
Guard A: Yeah. You can go on in.

"Cass?" Jack groans as he staggers inside. He reaches around to finger at the hole between the shoulder of his tactical jacket. "Man… I liked this coat."

Well, Cass was /almost/ out of here. That is until codes started being shouted out and people needed to be seen to. Especially ones that actually call her out by name. Stepping out of the office without any Abigail in tow, she just stares at Jack for a moment. Without snark or anything else, she quickly gestures for him to sit down at one of the free cots so she can start looking him over. "Geez, Jack, what happened?" Taking the coat from him, she sets it down somewhere out of the way and gestures for him to take his shirt off to get a better look at the wound.

"Would you believe that people still get mugged in New York?" The Irshman mutters darkly. He hesitates briefly, then drags his long sleeved black t-shirt off over his head, revealing the purplish mass of burn and laceration scars that start at his right shoulder and spread out to cover his torso, growing farther apart as they cross toward his left side. The fresh puncture on his back is just to one side of his spine. It seems relatively minor. Though it's deep, it's narrow it didn't hit anything but muscle. He shrugs uncomfortably, then continues with his story. "Kid doesn't even ask for anything until after he knifes me. Couldn't have been older than fifteen, either."

"Seeing the state of this city, I'm surprised more people don't get mugged." Cass waves the helpful lab technician, Tegan, other than to take the tray holding some bandages and swabs, not to mention disinfectant. The scars criss-crossing his back don't seem to phase her. She's patched Jack up before and those things are old news. Checking out the wound, she starts to carefully clean it. "I'm just glad he didn't kill you for the hell of it and take off with what he wanted." Because that's something that wouldn't surprise her in this city any more, either. "I've got Ali staying here for a little while." Just a conversational thing, in case Prime didn't mention it.

"Kill me? Bugger'd have to try harder than that. I gave 'im a stern talkin'-to. OW!" For a guy who can be so tough when it matters, Jack is kind of a weenie when he has the time to be. He winces, hisses, and fidgets like a little boy as Cass attends to his injury. "I'm sendin' him out with the next convoy o' refugees," he elaborates when he has a moment's respite. He squeezes his eyes tightly closed. "An' I did hear about Ali. How's she doin'?"

"Even tough guys can be taken by surprise." This point is made all the more poignant by her dabbing some more disinfectant into the wound. "Oh, hush up you big pansy. You can take a knife and come in worrying about your jacket, but get a little disinfectant anywhere near you and you start crying. Men." A few more swabs and she's convinced that any bad batcteria left over from whatever he was stabbed with is gone. Then it's just time to start bandaging. "She's doing better, but she was pretty malnourished. She's been starving herself, Jack. Not on purpose, but she's still doing it."

The pansy's breath catches in mid-hiss. "I know," he replies. "I gave her a hug the other day and she was so thin, I was scared o' brakin' her." Wearily, he reaches up to paw at his eyes. "If I got you some o' that liquid food like wot I had after I got 'sploded, could you give her some? S'the only way I can think of to make sure she eats what she's given, save for forcin' in her mouth. She's the sweetest damn girl, but gives a little too much of herself."

"Yeah. I gave her a bit of a doctor/patient talking to." Cass isn't a mom now for nothing. She's practicing her speeches for when her daughter will need them. "She feel useless for some reason. Like she's not doing enough. I think she's being crazy, but people take what they see differently. Especially now." Pulling off some gauze, she starts to tape it onto Jack's back. "You're lucky you don't need stitches. But, you have to be easy on it for a little while. Otherwise you're going to bleed everywhere and all the other bad asses are going to laugh at you."

"Yes ma'am. Thank you for not pokin' me with a needle." It's a surprisingly unsarcastic statement. Jack winces one last time as the bandage is pressed into place, then he tugs his shirt back over his head. "And thank you for talkin' to Ali," he grates as soon as his face is visible through the shirt's neck hole. "She thinks I worry for the sake of worryin'. Hopefully she'll listen to you. It makes me sad t'see her so scrawny and sickly."

There's a smile for Jack and Cass pulls her hair out to fix it again. All the bustle has made it mostly fall out of it's holdings. "Of course, Jack. You know the Saints are welcome here any time." They work well together. "I had to. I mean, I knew she was thin - how could you not? - but when her tests came back lacking in most of the stuff she needs to just stand up…I'm surprised the virus didn't just off her in one go." It's a sad sort of statement and she doesn't sound like she enjoys talking like that. "Give her something to do. Something that only she can manage and I think she'll perk up. Her powers would be pretty handy in making sure guards don't shoot at you and just go away peacefully."

"Peacefully?" Jack echoes, blinking owlishly. "Wuzzat?" He can't keep the smartass smile off of his weathered face, though. He nods, agreeing with the statement earnestly. It's a great way to keep from thinking about how close he came to losing one of his crew. "You're right, o' course. There are plenty o' things she can do to help. Keepin' hope alive with the radio is doin' so much to keep up morale in the city, but once she gets on her feet I'll see if I can't get her a more active role. Either way, I'm bloody proud o' her."

Cass rolls her eyes and Jack's bravado. No matter what methods she has resorted o lately, she still prefers things going quietly than blowing things up. It's just in her nature. "I think that would help. But, you look after her and make sure she eats. I'll take care of her while she's here. We've got the right shots and enough oxygen to last out the infection, but once I turn her back over to the Saints, you're going to have to make sure everyone does their part in making sure she eats and takes care of herself." It's what families do, after all! "I'm proud of her, too. I wouldn't let just anyone be my babysitter."

"Hah! We'll take care o' her, promise. As long as Ali's around, I'll never have to babysit. Now that's important work." Grinning, the freedom fighter slips his perforated jacket around his shoulders and zips it up. "Thanks for the patchin' job, hon. As much as I love 'Lena, the girl has a tendency to want to put stitches in everything." He coughs into his fist and abruptly changes the subject. "So… What do you think o' this new Peter Petrelli wot just showed up?"

"Stitches can be more trouble than they're worth." Especially with people being active and trying to get back into action as soon as possible. "Sometimes they cause more damage than they save. Cass picks up the tray to go disinfect what she needs to and wash her hands. If she's going to go home to her baby, she doesn't want to have bloody hands. "Elena's turning out to be a good medic, but she's not a doctor." Cass isn't technically a doctor, either, but she can patch people up pretty well. "You're welcome." As for this new Peter, she frowns and starts wiping her hands on a nearby towel. "It's Peter all right. I shot him and he regenerated." There's a pause. "God, I've missed him. How he used to be. How /I/ used to be back then."

Jack's voice is even hoarser than usual when he responds. "Me too. It seems like a real long time ago, but it was just a couple o' years." He shrugs his broad shoulders and sighs. "I'd like to keep him. If we could get him to stop bein' such a pussy, he'd be bloody valuable in a firefight. Then again, if we got him to stop bein' such a pussy, he'd probably turn into our Peter. I'd rather slam my pecker in a sliding glass door than wish a fate like that on such a nice kid. I figure if we can sort out when things started to go wrong, we can send him back to fix them before he becomes a douchebag, too."

The idea of Peter staying and becoming a part of the Saints…it's tempting. It gives more time with Abby, just in case that isn't in her changed future. However, she knows what would happen to him if he stayed. "He can't stay here," she shakes her head. "It'll change him just like it changed us. And how's he supposed to go back to two years ago after living through this for awhile. He's supposed to go back and change things. He can't do that if he's dead. Which is what he'll be if he stays here very long." It's not a world for the former Peter. "And stop that. Petrelli…killing Sylar changed him and he fights the fight just like all of us."

"No." The word is spoken flatly, almost angrily. "We aren't like him. He doesn't care about anything but that wife o' his anymore. He throws away his people's lives. That why the Saints never team up with him. I'm not about to send my family off to die at the Petrelli boy's whim." As he gains momentum, Jack grows more and more agitated. In the end he stands and resorts to pacing as a way to burn off energy. "I know he did his part with Sylar, but I don't like the way he runs his ship. Plus, the cheeky fucker punched me. Once. But still."

Just as angrily, Cass glares at Jack. She's always felt affection for Peter, even after he changed. She has a blind spot for those she cares about, especially someone she trained. "He /doesn't/." This is something they're never going to agree on. "And I'm not telling you to send off the Saints with him, I'm just saying that just because you don't agree with him doesn't mean you can write him off like that. God, why don't you just hold a grudge till the end of time, Jack." As he burns off his energy by pacing, Cass just crosses her arms in front of her. "He /doesn't/ throw away his people's lives. They know the risk they run when they go that far in to rescue people."

"Fine. You like him all you want. I'm content with thinkin' he's a shit." Jack's mouth presses into a flat, unhappy line. Bad blood, anyone? "Wot say we just agree to disagree and move on?" We've had this conversation before. It never gets us anywhere." He waves one gloved hand dismissively, but not impolitely so. "Anyway, I should be goin'."

"Fine." Arguments with Jack never get them anywhere. "I'm not saying he's not an ass sometimes. But…he's still Peter. He gave up everything he was to try and save us. Just like the past Peter is doing right now." Holding her arms tight around her, she sighs. "Sorry, I'll stop. Tell everyone I said hi. Especially Elena." She heard about her return through Ali. "I can tell Ali that everything with that went alright?"

Jack nods briskly. "Minor injuries. Nothin' severe. Can't say it'll stay that way once 'Lena has a chance to tear into Nice Guy Peter." Smirk. "I'm glad that boy can heal 'imself." The Irishman lifts two fingers to touch his brow, bidding Cass farewell. "Give Abby a kiss for me." Then he ducks out the door.

"Baby penis! You still keepin' an eye on things out here?"

Baby Penis/Guard B is not amused.

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