To Laugh Again - Part 1 (Verbena Day 1 - Afternoon)

OOC: Part 1 of a Joint post from Largehobbit, Wandering Wolf, and Sail.

“It’s no good, I just can’t do it.” Gill slumped back down into his chair with a light sheen of sweat on his brow. His muscles cramped from the attempted exertion and the wound itself itched like a nest of fire ants had set to work on his leg.

“Well,” Adler observed, “Yah got from tha bed tah tha chair, Mistah Gill. Crutches," he continued, “seem awkward at first. Swingin’ yah bodty in sync is a bit disconcertin’ tah begin...but yah’ll get tha hang of it.” Actually, today was a banner day in the boy’s recovery. The regrowth of his muscle tissue was astonishing, to say the least. A quick comparison to the healthy muscle of his left calf showed that Gill was within ten percent of a complete heal.

The hypoallergenic tissue graft that would complete the process was now on its’ way to Beaumonde, their next destination. VMC had even secured an updated O.R. in the Huntsville Hospital. The procedure would be quick, painless, and most fortunate, performed as an “out patient” surgery.

“Til yah get accustomed, Ah’m gonna have someone with yah every time yah move,” the medic offered. “Tha Sistah will stay with yah fah awhile, and then Doctah Yeva. Miss Serena’s volunteered tah help as well. Ah thought we’d give her tha evenin ‘ shift.”

“I er, I’ll be ok.” Gill was a little horrified by the idea of making a complete tit of himself in front of just about every attractive woman of the ship though he supposed having Keller the Doc and members of the crew pitching in would be a likely alternative.

He tried to flex the muscle in his calf and winced as the pain flared up in response. He had to admit though that it was not as bad as it had been and some of his strength was returning. “Will there be a scar?” He asked, half hoping that that answer would be in the affirmative.

The Doc shook his head. “Nope. When yah walk ouitta tha hospital on Beaumonde yah’ll be all healed up.” He reviewed the chart on his cortex. “Tell me,” he asked, “have yah noticed any othah changes in yah muscles? Muscle growth in othah places is a potential side effect.”

In the corner, the nun adjusted her braid from one side to the other, head tilted to regard Gill as Adler posed his question to the youth. For a moment, Ly pictured a darker meaning inlaid to the medic’s question: tumors, growths, and cysts chief among them. As her almond eyes washed over the boy, she hoped there would be no need for him to again go under the knife.

Gill blushed. He had in fact noticed a slight tightening to his abs and pecs. Things were firming up and it did not stop at his belt line. Well into his teens things had already begun to blossom down below and he’d picked up enough knowledge along the way to figure out what was what, but since the operation... Well let it just be said that matters had progressed and manhood was not so much a blossoming promise than a firm reality. With emphasis on the firm. Sharing a room with his little sister was starting to become something of a nightmare.

He glanced up towards the Sister and managed, “I guess.. a little.”

Adler nodded, his clinical demeanor fixed tightly in place before the blushing young man. “Tah be expected,” he concluded the subject. “But last night, somethin’ quite unexpected occurred. Have yah seen Haddie tahday?”

Gill looked relieved by the change of tack and shook his head. “She snuck out late while I was sleeping and hasn’t been back in yet. Figured she was after food given that Vas grounded her and she missed dinner last night. I’d normally track her down but…” he gestured toward his injured leg with a helpless lopsided smile.

Honestly he hadn’t been too worried but now he blurted out, “Why? Is she ok? She isn’t in trouble again is she?”

The medic smiled at the nun. “Apparently, she went tah tha gelley, lookin’ fah food. She found Marisol. Now, accordin’ tah what Marisol told me this mornin’....”

“Oh no, what did she do?” Gills innards went cold at the mention of Marisol. What in the verse had his sister done to the mechanic this time. He could still remember the view down the barrel of that woman’s shotgun.

“She played,” Dorian’s smile broadened. “She an’ Marisol. They had hotdogs, an’ then tha pair of ‘em got up tah some mischief tahgethah. Tha Sistah here saw ‘em. Ah’ll let her tell yah propah.”

“Oh yes,” Lyen took a serious tone, eyebrows raised, “Haddie was a sight to behold. I fear you wouldn’t believe me--I mean, I wouldn’t have believed it if I hadn’t seen it with my own eyes.” She shot Adler a mischievous smirk before recounting the shenanigans for Gill to hear. How she’d happened upon the pair giggling together like a pair of criminals who’d gotten away scott-free. From mustard guns, to mayo mohawks--all the way to Haddie’s delightful, erupting laughter.

“We froze, but Haddie was in the wind. I’ve never heard anything come out of your sister’s mouth before.” That stirred something in Lyen, “How long has it been, that Haddie hasn’t been speaking?”

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