When the Sinful strike back
The doors to Hel's ward swished open, and the big blue lummox of a Thux made his way into the room, holding something behind his back with almost no attempt to disguise the fact that he was doing so. He crept on padded feet towards her side, not wanting to make too much noise though he was almost being comically obvious about it.
The ward was considerably darker than the rest of sickbay, to the point where the Thux could only just see enough to not bump in to things. It all served to cater to Hel's eyes, so she didn't need her contacts.
"Hey. Sorry it took me so long to get down here. Do you know how much paperwork is involved in being in command of a starship? In a society that got rid of paper, bear in mind. So, from me to you, if they offer you command, be ready for paperwork. Might as well fake a mental illness or something."
He didn't even seem to notice her injuries, or at least he didn't outwardly respond to them. Revulsion, inspection, curiosity, nothing of that crossed his features. Then again, how often had he himself been the target of revulsion, curiosity, or inspection? "So, how are they treating you here? Good food, entertainment? Any pain?"
"Hey." she opened her eyes and offered a soft smile when Cor approached and addressed her. "Hey, slow down, slow down." She closed her eyes for a moment again. "Still very weak. Can't brain very much." Looking at him again. "Treating me ok. Liquid food. No entertainment. Pain only when I breathe."
The Thuxbrain dialed down a notch. "Good. Except for no entertainment. I'll sneak you a cake with a PaDD in it next time." he offered with a smirk. "Also, got you something." he then brought what was behind his back out to the front. It was a pillow, in the crude shape of the Victory's main reactor. Very soft and plush.
"If you squeeze it, it makes the thoom." he mentioned as he handed it to her. "Just something from me to say thanks for keeping the Victory intact. And so you don't forget what a healthy reactor sounds like."
She blinked, then blinked again, then chuckled. "How cute." She smiled softly, taking the pillow and cuddling it in her arms, then wincing softly. "So cute." she reiterated. "Gonna treasure this. Never have too many pillows." For now it found a home next to her on her bed, held in place by one arm. "So, how are you doing?"
He gave a smile, "As the guy with a prosthetic limb can support, you're right. Never enough pillows." he chuckled, pleased she liked it. He really didn't know what to get people when it came to gifts. As a fellow sentient, something to ease pain and bring out happy memories, but as an engineer he wanted to act practically. She was stuck in bed. Get her a pillow. Seemed to work.
"I'm doing about as well as possible. Can't wait to just get back to engineering and stop having to make so many decisions. I dunno, just didn't sit right. Aside from the chair not having tails in mind, mind you." he clarified. "Everything kinda sucks, but it gets better over time, right?" he asked the woman in bed. Possibly crossing the line as far as dialing it back, but there was a hint that this was a rhetorical question.
"So they say." she mused. "So here's you complaining about having to make too many decisions, and here's me, having too few of them to make." She sounded exceedingly bored. "I'm losing my mind here. How about we try to meet in the middle somewhere."
Something clicked. "Source, you're right. I'm sorry." he actually chuckled, "Just kinda venting to the one person I know that isn't going to recommend me for a trip to the psych ward." he shook his head. "Alright, so..." and then the train ran out of steam. He just forgot most of the English language, though it came back in a moment. "I'm terrible at this, I know. I just don't know if you want to talk about what happened."
"Don't worry about it. I'm just complaining. Think I've earned the right to." She made a dismissive wave, albeit a weak one. "I like to think I've got too much life in me to be lying here doing nothing."
Then a soft sigh "Not sure there's much to talk about. Sokolov and me went to do a simple bypass of a power conduit, next thing I know I'm on the ground and the world's burning." Her words were slow and measured, like she had to concentrate on speaking. "Funny thing. When you get hit hard enough it drops short term memory, so I don't actually remember what happened. I just - ... " She paused a moment. "Poor Sokolov. He caught the brunt of it, I'm told. Only reason I'm still alive, really."
"You've more than earned the right." he confirmed, then listened as she spoke. He listened to her tale of sparks and flame, of the hole in her memory. He gave a nod at the end, mentally adding a name and a glass to his almost evergrowing list. "I can relate to a few of those moments. You all did good, though. So I'll approve some time off for you." he said with a smirk. He spared her the story of the fighter group that broke orders and paid with their lives. He spared her most of the story of the ambush.
"We didn't accomplish much on our end. There was a bit of a choke point that the Marines almost got pinned in, but we were able to directly support them and got them out." he commented, and then shook his head, "We took a few prisoners, but it seems like a hell of a waste. All that effort, all those lives, for just a handful of prisoners and no real gain." another shake of his head.
"No time off, please - at least, outside recovery time." she mused, for now not commenting on his latter remarks. Honestly she could do without those concerns, at least while she was still too weak to even walk. "I'd rather get right back to work. Being alone here with nothing to challenge me, my thoughts just wander, some of it nice, some rather less so."
Having said that she squeezed the pillow, the soft thrumm sound it emanated bringing a soft smile to pale features. "I miss engineering."
He gave a nod, accepting and even expecting that she'd want to get right back into it. "I can respect that. Okay, no rest for the wicked, except for the rest to recover. Promise." he gave a nod, "As for Engineering, you'll be back in no time. No fanfares, nothing like that. Just take care of yourself, and show up on time whenever the docs let you out."
"Doctors here seem pretty good. I don't much like doctors myself, but maybe you got better luck with them than I do." he gave her a smirk. "Anything I can get you before I head back? Magazine? Whole bunch of movies?"
"If you can finagle that black and red PaDD that's on my side table in my quarters, that'd be great." she offered. "I keep my story on there, that I'm writing. If there's anything I can do while cooped up in here it's write."
He gave a nod, "One PaDD finagle, done." and he carefully stood back up, a pop in his back as he gave a stretch and twist that only a Thux could perform. Or a trained gymnast. "Any messages for the outside world?"
"Hmmm. No. Don't think so. The outside world can do without me for a few days." she yawned. "Oh. That reminds me. A while back you mentioned that you were busy writing something as well."
At that, he gave a nod and sat back down. "The Book of Thux." he gave a smirk, "I can't decide if I want to keep the THE in it or not. Makes it sound singular. Lonely. Alone." Despite the topic, he actually kept the smirk, "I think I'm just about done. Well, it's one of those books you never really stop writing, cause you're always learning but I have the important parts. All the parts about forgiving people because they don't know, or trying to be a better Thux by letting go of things that hurt you." he paused, "Not like in a drop the hot iron cause it's hot sense, but more in a ... I dunno... soul baggage." he guessed, and then he looked up at her.
"Part of me wants to actually, physically write it. Have a solid copy. The practical part of me recognizes I could just replicate it." he chuckled. "I may just hand-write one copy, and replicate any other copies." he mused out loud. "I can get you a copy if you want. Digital, I mean."
"I'd love that." Hel replied after a moment's silence - she really was weak and tired. It took her a few moments to grasp the full depth of meaning Cor had meant when describing his book of Thux, though when it did she gave another nod. "I'd be honored."
He gave a nod, "I'll get you a copy once your out. It's... a bit of a read. Probably not good recovery stuff." he shook his head, "Speaking of, that book you loaned me, 'Forsake Me Not'... also not good to read while alone, in the dark." he smirked, "Scary stuff. I'll get a copy on standby for you, and I'll go wrangle up that PaDD from your side table." and he moved to stand again. "You focus on getting better."
At the compliment about her book she gave a warm smile. "Thank you. I'm glad you liked it." A pause. "It's a very good book for people who are lonely. Turn the lights down, read my book, you won't feel alone anymore."
"Yeah about that..." the Thux looked around, then leaned in. "... That was kinda the problem."
Comm. Cor Cordale
Chief Engineer and a Brave Thux
Lt hel Samedi
Bedridden Assistant Chief Engineer