2008-07-14: Painkiller

Starring:

Lee_icon.gif Joule_icon.gif

Summary:

Lee gets released from the hospital after getting MOAR stitches.

Date It Happened:

July 14, 2008

Painkiller


New York City

Lee called from the hospital this time. According to him, it's not too serious, but he will need a ride home, because his car is still at Kory's and anyway he shouldn't drive because of the painkillers (!). When she arrives, he's already in the waiting room, discharged. He's moving all right, though a bit stiff, bruises already blossomed on his face and arm. "Careful, careful." he says as Joule approaches, knowing her propensity to hug like a vise when she's worried or upset. "I have stitches on my back and side." He does embrace her, if a bit tenderly, favoring the other side. "Thanks for coming, I'm glad I got a hold of you."

"You'll always be able to catch hold of me when you want me," she whispers, staring at him in abject alarm. His pretty face, all banged up and turning black and blue. "What, did you go back to the club after we got kicked out? Have a go at the bouncer, then?" That's the only logical thing she can think of, given that she woke up without him, and now he's all bashed to hell and gone. She didn't even have time to get all prettied up. Jeans and a T-shirt. Ordinary girl clothes. Not Joule clothes. "You look like someone put you through a pencil sharpener."

Lee says, as they exit, "No, actually it was a window. I went down to visit Kory, you remember, to tell her about how unreasonable things were at that club." Something Kory no doubt appreciated. He catches her look and almost blushes. "It's not as bad as it looks." he insists as they go to the patient pick-up zone and he painedly gets buckled in. "I mean, the ten stitches, those are bad, but this is just, I fell a bit when the guy tried to push me out a window with his mind. I don't even know why, he just came in, using some kind of ability to look like some other dude, then gave that up and threw me out a window with his mind. I think the cops were chasing him, the whole bottom floor of the building was covered by FBI agents."

Joule listens to this. For Joule, with an astonishing amount of control. She doesn't speak until he says for the second time that Lee mentions he got thrown out of a window, and how Kory's apartment isn't on the bottom floor which was, in fact, covered with FBI agents. At which point she waits until they're safely in the cab, and rolling back toward Brooklyn before she screeches "SOMEONE THREW YOU OUT A BLOODY FUCKING WINDOW?! With their MIND?!"

Lee says, in his own incredulous tone: "I know, right? I was pissed off too! I had never even met the guy before, he must have been after someone or something else, or just trying to cause as much havoc as possible to get away. When it didn't work…uh, gravity I mean… he came over and tried to do it again. Eventually I got the hint and limped my ass to a fire escape. I wish I knew what the hell it was all about, but on the other hands the feds did spend like an hour at the hospital badgering me about everything, so I guess the less I knew the better." He closes his eyes for a second, then says, "There were some gunshots, I don't know why the guy would go to the trouble of using telekinesis when he could have just shot us, so I don't think it was him, but."

"Lee? You're the only person who thinks like you do. Forensics can trace bullets. They can't trace energy from your mind. So it was probably somebody else doing the shooting." Joule pinches the bridge of her nose. I can't bloody leave you alone for a minute. Every time I do, someone tries to KILL you. I know you can be grating, babe, I do. But come ON."

Lee says, "I'm guessing if there's a hundred FBI agents chasing a guy, at least one of them will have figured out that he's telekinetic, especially if the guy hides it as badly as this one did, but I see your point. Anyway, who can understand people like that? Probably a waste of time to try." He opens his eyes again, all innocent and green. "Grating? Me? People are just sensitive about the weirdest things." Is he being ironic? Well, maybe a bit. He must not be hurt too bad. "It was just another dumb coincidence proving how badly Fate tends to botch things up when not smacked on the nose with a newspaper." His tone does soften: "I'm sorry to put you through this again. Believe me."

"You …you really don't get it, do you, luv?" Joule chuckles, but it's that quasi-hysteric edge hanging off the end of it. "Babe, nobody believes in us, what we can do. If our cabbie speaks english, he thinks we're practising for some sort of way off off off off off off Broadway thing." She shakes her head. "I'm just glad you're all right. I swear to god, I'm going to tag your ear like a fucking housecat."

Lee says, "Plenty of people believe, I can think of a solid dozen right off the top of my head. Some of them are bound to be cops, eventually." rather unconcernedly. "Knowledge is like that. It spreads, it never goes backwards." says the guy whose memory was unbeknownst to him, erased of an entire afternoon several months previous. "Anyway, I do want to find out what it was all about, but I really don't think the guy had any particular beef with me. I was just standing in the wrong place at the wrong time. I didn't even have time to annoy him about anything, or even know who he was so I could annoy him if I wanted to."

Joule snickers, leaning against the cab door rather than against Lee, though the urge is there. "Babe, you don't need to know someone to annoy someone. I love you dearly and some days I want to put you through a window. So your friend, the comic girl, she's all right? Her boyfriend?" Something to steer her daft egoistic hipster off himself for a minute. Or perhaps to distract Joule from wanting to murder whoever threw him out a window.

Lee says, "Everyone who was there was okay when I called up afterwards. Cam was there, one of my students from school. I kinda think he heard me cuss. Elisabetha, you remember her - dream-recruited adult education student? - she was there with her 'keeper'." Air quotes without the finger motions, Lee's specialty. "I saw the two of them getting out of there quick after."

"Oh, right, the one-armed girl from the Zoo, yeah," Joule nods. "Her father or teacher or whatever he is. Bloody creepy creep he is. Death obsessed." She shakes her head. "Sounds like there's a puzzle. A nasty puzzle. And we've only got corner pieces."

Lee says, "Yeah. He was a creep. I didn't have a chance to give him a piece of my mind, but I'm sure it's coming soon enough, once he figures out where his pet project is going on afternoons. Oh, ugh, that reminds me, I have to call and get a sub for tomorrow…" Lee hates getting substitute teachers, like many, he's paranoid about having to regain authority over the class after an absence. "…maybe for the rest of the week, we'll see how things go. I'm supposed to put this antibiotic stuff on, but the doctor said, in an encouraging voice, 'it's a clean cut'. Gee, thanks, what great news."

"Tell them you got thrown out the window by a maniac, luv," Joule says, anticipating the concern. "Show them your stitches when you got back. Guarantee, even though the FBI was there, some of that made the news. And your students will think you completely badarse." She lets her lips curl into a smile. "And your stitches? We'll makes ure they're properly applied with the cream."

Lee says, "If anyone asks, I didn't actually go out the window, I just got knocked back and it broke, by the way. Thanks for taking care of me. Again. And if that guy comes around again, and I recognize him, you can do whatever the hell you want to him and I won't complain even a little." A free pass on Lee complaining! Treasure it forever!

"You did go out. You hung by your jacket and it ripped, and you swung like James Bond to the safety of the balcony below," Joule corrects peacefully. As if this were something she encounters every day. "And if that guy comes around again and you recognize him? You won't have time to complain." Joule? Not really the gentle type. Very much the vengeful type.

Lee grins, and this time he leans over and puts his head on her shoulder. "It's a damn shame too, it was a nice jacket. So you actually ran into Elisabetha at the zoo around the same time frame that I was recruiting her for readin', writin' and 'rithmetic. What did you think?" They had discussed it briefly before but now drawing a connection has re-awakened interest in Lee, it seems.

"She seems a bright girl. Repressed, though. And weak. She about collapsed that day. Legs just gave out under her. Had to kill her pain receptors so we could get her back on her feet and to a bench. Old creepy didn't seem to care." Joule glowers. It bothers her; her own father went through his own stage of not caring. But it was nothing like what she saw on the man wih her. "Maybe he's not really a relative, just a bad choice of tutor."

Lee says, "That's the impression I get from her, though I try not to pry too much into personal life stuff until they're ready to open up on their own. She does call him 'Teacher', which I wouldn't say if it was, you know, Uncle Steve or Dad or whatever. Or if I was more than in the third grade. Witless homeschoolers." He shakes his head. "Anyway, she is quite bright. Scored very well on the pre-test. Hopefully we'll make some good progress. Once I get back on my feet, that is."

"Good, then," is Joule's assessment. "She like us, is she? Gifted? And is that an issue…or gonna be?"

Lee says, "She is. Something to do with entropy, which is what the Teacher wants to control in order to - now get this, this will blow your mind - eliminate all suffering everywhere in the world. Get that? Fundamental law of thermodynamics, the guy understands so little of it that he thinks it can be used to completely alter an entire facet of human life. She's under so much pressure, she feels she has some kind of disembodied dark force inside herself that she has to constantly fight." He grins a little. "Reminds me a little of the normal Brubaker kids with their notebooks full of angry band lyrics and shouting in the halls. She just hasn't ever gotten to be a teenager and go through that phase. It's kinda funny in a way."

"Funny," Joule repeats, shaking her head in abject disbelief. He just described a girl with a profoundly dangerous power, and is equating it to typical emo teen antics. The cab has finally pulled over the bridge after sitting in traffic. "Do we need to stop and fill your scrips? We should get you a steak or two. Protein. To help you heal." She closes her eyes and runs a hand in the air, down along his side until she senses the sceaming nerves. She pops on her own gift to acquiesce the nerves into relaxing silence.

Lee is already semi-drugged…but her power helps, a lot. He is able to sit up a little straighter, though not strain the stitches, of course. "Yeah, definitely. I have the prescriptions here, it's just for a couple of weeks. Anyway, for Elisabetha, Doctor Lee prescribes a course of literature, theater and the arts. Give her a sense of proportion about the role of painful experiences in normal life and an outlet for her own feelings." Fighting powers with education. It is perhaps the quintessential conflict for Lee, and maybe that's why he's so serene about it. He's confident which side will win.

"Well, I can take her your lesson plans, while you're getting better," Joule suggests. "Or set up webcam so you can do it over the internet or something. So you can keep your hand in, without straining yourself, hmm?" She relaxes visibly as Lee does.

Lee thinks. "I think a big part of it is the setting. She needs to still be coming to school or going to the library or something, not in the place she associates with her other 'Teacher'." he says. "Maybe some library assignments for a couple of weeks? At least until I get back on my feet. If you think she'll take them from you that would be, wow, that would be amazing for you to do that." Even more so than taking care of him, taking care of his students, you might as well draw little hearts in Lee's eyes when he looks at Joule in this moment.

"Can't hurt to ask her, luv," is Joule's suggestion. "Besides, I can help her with her stamina in the process." She gives a shrug, modestly. "The girl could use some expanded horizons, and that's the truth." She catches his dreamy-lovey expression and smiles crookedly at him. "I love you too, you big dork."

Lee says, "I love you madly, and I am no dork. I'm just on painkillers, is all. Ugh, what a day. At least it's looking up now." he admits.

"No, you're not. You're just a gorgeous, dopey, daft hipster who I'm going to make love to ever so gently in a day or so." Joule flounces out of the cab, and nimbly slides across the trunk to help him out. She tosses the fare into the little bulletproof compartment, along with a fair tip. Wedding season's paid well. "C'mon. Let's get you to bed."

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