User Tag List

Results 1 to 14 of 14

Thread: I've been better - 6/15 evening, Infirmary - Tarran/Evangeline [closed]

  1. #1
    House Hutchinson Tarran Hutchinson's Avatar  
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Posts
    41
    Mentioned
    16 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    I've been better - 6/15 evening, Infirmary - Tarran/Evangeline [closed]

    Tarran felt like death. Eva wouldn't allow him a looking glass, which must mean that his appearance was something worse than that. There was a chill in the room. His attendants assured him that it was the onset of summer, but judging by the shivers he was wracked with, Hutchinson couldn't be convinced. His nasal passages were still clogged, which was good for him, because he was sure that everyone else in the room was suffering from what had to be a terrible odor caused by the constant sweats he had been enduring. But what they couldn't smell, was fear.

    The Lord of Chesbrook, or whatever was left of it by now, was going to die. He was resigned to his fate, even if his doctor was not. He had tried to convince her to abandon him and try to help others. He didn't want her to see him, if he was truly going to deteriorate beyond what he already had. Tarran wanted the woman to remember him as he had been. The dashing man that had cut his way through Luther's guards to her. Who had carried her to safety as Lochlan and Luther battled for the throne. The one who had kissed her as she fussed over the slash he had taken from one of the king's guard.

    She would be here any minute to check on him. He was too weak to get up. Too weak to bar the door. Too weak to stop her, even though he feared for her every time she came into the room. He would have to make her see. Make her understand, that even though he appreciated the punishment she had put herself through. The lack of sleep, lack of food, and everything else, was doing nothing but making him feel worse. She would have to be candid. If he was going to die, she was going to have to let him go.

  2. #2
    House Baptiste Evangeline Baptiste's Avatar  
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Posts
    88
    Mentioned
    48 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    There was something almost a little comforting about being able to slip into a routine, even if it was one as unpleasant as preparing to visit someone in quarantine. Evangeline, at this point, could use all the comfort she could get; in addition to being uprooted from home, leaving her entire family behind to deal with the plague, not long after they'd arrived on Tuneric Tarran had fallen ill. He now looked, although she would hardly admit it to herself, to be at death's door, and despite everyone telling her that it was too dangerous to see him, she wouldn't be able to live with herself if she'd stayed away.

    And so she'd set up a system, a process she'd employed with success before. Before entering Tarran's room, she stepped into a small adjoining room and changed her clothes, and put a large kettle of water on to boil. She washed her face and hands, to ensure she wasn't going to expose him to anything else, and after tying her hair up, she wrapped a scarf around her neck to pull up over her nose. This was the process she went through each time she visited, and this time was no different, except perhaps for the fact that she was hurrying more than usual.

    After knocking lightly, she opened the door and slipped in, twitching the scarf down from over her face for a moment to offer him a broad smile. She carried a tray on her hip, and she slid it onto a small table by the fire place before crossing to his bed, sitting down beside him and brushing a few locks of damp hair from his forehead. She put on a brave face, but she was never truly able to mask the worry she felt, the pain in seeing him waste away. But today, where there was worry, there was also a hesitant glimmer of hope.

    "How are you feeling?" She asked as she pressed her wrist to his forehead, then her fingers to his throat. He surely had to be used to her prodding by now. "Have you been able to get any rest at all?"

  3. #3
    House Hutchinson Tarran Hutchinson's Avatar  
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Posts
    41
    Mentioned
    16 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    It seemed as though all Tarran ever did anymore was rest. When he wasn't sleeping, he was laying on his back staring at the ceiling. He had tried to get out of bed the day before, only to falter and be scolded by one of the nurses. He couldn't tell, but he felt as though he had lost about a dozen pounds or more, and he was positive that he was the lightest shade of pale that anyone had ever seen. "Never better," he croaked, and put on a weak smile. Hutchinson had watched her come into the room, even though he pretended to be resting. She looked so young. So healthy. So out of place walking amongst the dead.

    Everytime she touched him there was a small amount of pain. Tarran had grown use to it, and did his best not to flinch or show that it hurt. He was constantly checking to see if his skin was bruised, but it never was. He couldn't explain it, but was really too proud to admit it to Eva. "I sleep," he said, because he knew that she was aware of the fact. He wanted to ask about the others, the few around the island that he had heard were also sick. He wondered if any of them ever got any better. It was on the lips of servants that some prominent Tunericians had already succumbed to the illness, and Tarran was shortly to join them.

    "Eva," he called, with a pleading tone in his voice. "I hate that you have to see me like this. And I would hate it more if you were to get sick." He touched her arm lightly, and smiled weakly again. "I'm sorry that we didn't have more time," he told her, and he was. The world was a cruel place. They should have had the rest of their lives together. To enjoy the laurels of their parts in Lochlan's triumph. Perhaps the gods had not been with them when they had overthrown Luther. Perhaps they were being punished.

  4. #4
    House Baptiste Evangeline Baptiste's Avatar  
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Posts
    88
    Mentioned
    48 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Tarran's pleas tore at her heart, although she would never let it show. Such an illness was not only hard on the body, but on the mind and the heart as well; for one so strong and virile as he to now find himself frail and weak...Evangeline couldn't help but feel sympathy. It hadn't been easy on her, either, seeing him waste away. Not only was she watching a man she cared deeply for deteriorate, but there was the added frustration that she was supposed to be one of the best healers on Balfour, and perhaps even on Tuneric, and so far nothing she could do helped. Hearing him speak as though he was already dead only made things worse, but behind her mask she smiled softly, the expression crinkling the corners of her eyes even if her gaze held a bit of sternness to it.

    "You're just going to have to accept the fact that I'm not going to give up on you." She placed her hand softly over his on her arm, and if he'd have let her without pitching a fit she would have leaned forward and kissed his forehead. "I hated that you saw me as I was, forgotten in a cell, all skin and bones and filth. But trust me, it's something you'll get over." It was hard for her to recall just how long ago it had been, that he'd fought through the dungeons of Moorford to find her. She had no idea how long she'd been there; only that after awhile they had more or less forgotten about her. Sometimes someone had come down to bring food and water, but the woman Tarran had fought so bravely to save had been a shadow of herself when he'd gotten to her, hardly the beautiful damsel in distress like in the stories. "You know I'm careful, and besides - if you're so convinced you're going to die soon, you'll hardly know if I get sick myself until I show up next to you in the afterlife. Only then are you allowed to feel guilty and scold me for being here with you."

    Reaching forward to brush a blonde curl away from his face, Evangeline stood and began to move toward the tray she'd brought in. "Can you manage to sit up a bit on your own?" Her eyes were on her work, and she kept it that way to save his pride if he were to struggle in the attempt; he likely weighed little enough now that she could easily move him on her own, but she would only resort to that if she absolutely had to.

    After a few moments, she carried her tray over and set it on the table beside his bed, pulling her stool over with her foot. "I've found something new to try that might help...I can't promise it'll taste great, though." She pressed a wooden cup into his hands, filled only about halfway with a strong tea and a small dab of honey. Her own knowledge, combined with that of some of the local healers, promised that this would at least ease his pain, if not begin to heal him completely. But at this point, Evangeline wasn't taking anything for granted.

  5. #5
    House Hutchinson Tarran Hutchinson's Avatar  
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Posts
    41
    Mentioned
    16 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    The ailing sea captain still had the strength to roll his eyes at the girl as she rebuffed him, and pushed himself up in his bed. He could move around just fine, or so he told himself. Even if he was over-confident, he still had the strength to move around the bed without assistance. "You were suffering for a cause," he managed to reassure her, in reference to her imprisonment. When he had found her, he was determined to go back and kill Luther himself. But Lochlan had beaten him to the punch. "Whereas, I am wasting away with nothing to show for the effort. Besides, you look incredible now, and that's all that really matters, isn't it?"

    He took the cup and raised it to his lips, drinking the hot liquid and scowling as he lowered the cup. "Yeah," he said, fighting the urge to cough or gag. "You can't promise, and shouldn't. It tastes like dolphin sweat. And honey." He shook his head like a dog that had been splashed in the face, as if the motion would chase the taste away. Instead, it only managed to make him dizzy, and he rested his head back into his pillow. "Besides," he began with a sigh. "You're too stubborn to follow me into the afterlife."

    Letting his eyes rest for a minute, he stifled a yawn and then blinked them back open. "What news, anyhow? Anything from Balfour? The princess...err, Queen Nataliah? Langston?" Tarran had tried to keep up on what was happening around him, though it wasn't always easy, because he could never seem to tell how long he had been asleep or how long it was between visits from the servants. Not that any of them save for Eva had access to any real news.

    Tarran dragged his sleeve across his forehead, wiping away some of the sweat before Eva could fuss over it. "Did I mention that you look incredible," he asked with a smile.

  6. #6
    House Baptiste Evangeline Baptiste's Avatar  
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Posts
    88
    Mentioned
    48 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Evangeline looked over her shoulder at her blonde love, skepticism heavily etched into her expression. "'Suffering for a cause' my rotund ass. I was suffering because some tyrant asshole didn't give a shit if I lived or died...and probably would have preferred the latter." Her time spent in the dungeons of Moorford Estates was not something she was happy to recall, and she was sincerely disappointed that she had no way to extract some sort of vengeance on the man who had put her through that torture. She was still haunted by nightmares, and although she would never tell Tarran, they were worse now that she was sleeping alone again. Nearly every night she woke with a scream in her throat, and frequently she couldn't get back to sleep at all.

    It was all too easy to let the subject of death drop, even if they were speaking of it in a half-jest. She moved to the small, high window and stood up on a stool to crack it open, the evening air still warm enough that she wasn't afraid of Tarran catching a chill, especially with the fire still going. "Nothing from Balfour yet...but I suppose that's not surprising." King Lochlan had told them in no uncertain terms as they were boarding the ships to flee the plague that the islands of Balfour were going to be completely locked down; nobody in, nobody out.

    Also on lock down was their princess-turned-queen. "Apparently the king has his wife as closed away as possible...she's made very few public appearances since things started getting bad. Word is she's not too happy about it, but she can't fight the fact that this thing strikes Balfourians harder than it does anyone else." Taking a bowl of tepid water and a cloth, Eva moved to sit beside Tarran's bed again. The desire to reach forward and kiss him while his eyes were closed was so strong it was almost painful; it took an amazing amount of restraint to keep the space necessary to keep herself from becoming ill, as well. Instead her fingers brushed over his hand, and she carefully wrapped her hand around his.

    "Everyone else is doing well. Langston has been keeping himself busy...whoever was running things here before was apparently not doing so good a job, but he seems to be adjusting to things well enough. Tatianna as well; since we're keeping fairly insular, she's spending a lot of time in the library." Slipping her fingers from his, she pushed the laced neck of his tunic open a bit and rang out the cloth, dabbing it lightly on his exposed skin. "Your sisters ask after you all the time; I'm going to get quizzed the moment I go back upstairs, I'm sure. But they're adjusting as well as can be expected."

    Things had not been easy for the Hutchinson family, and with one tragedy after another, Evangeline had to admire the sisters' strength. They had sort of banded together, as much out of necessity as out of compatibility, united as they were in their mutual worry for Tarran's well being.

    "I think you might have, yes," she said, a smile coming to her own lips as she took in the familiar crinkling at the corners of his eyes that she was so fond of, "but that's pretty high on the list of things I don't think I'll ever tire of hearing." Rinsing the cloth, she rang it out and followed the path his sleeve had taken over his forehead, dampening a few stray curls. There was so little she could do to help him, but she knew this at least would make him just a little bit more comfortable.

    A wry smile was on her face as she ran the cloth along the side of his throat. "How's that honeyed dolphin sweat settling, love?"

  7. #7
    House Hutchinson Tarran Hutchinson's Avatar  
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Posts
    41
    Mentioned
    16 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    "It'll stay down, if that's what you're asking," he told her. One thing living on the sea had taught Tarran was how to stifle any urge he had to be sick to his stomach. Plus, some of the cooks that had been assigned to him in the past had helped him over his disgust for things that didn't taste too good. In this, at least, Hutchinson was the model patient. He could take his medicine and, even if he didn't like it, could do it without complaint. "As for how it's making me feel, I can't say. Most of my pain goes away when you are near, so I won't know until you've left me once more."

    Tarran had faith in Evangeline and her abilities. For all the guilt he felt over her lack of sleep and exhausting days of research, he was confident that eventually she would find the answer. The only question that remained was whether it would be soon enough to help him. To that end, he was determined to fight fate as long as he could. Everyday he opened his eyes was a day closer to success for her. It almost reminded him of the old tragedies that Liron used to tell back in Chesbrook.

    Maybe he should tell her. She deserved at least that much, after everything she had done. Reaching his hand down to hers and lacing their fingers together, he smiled warmly. "Eva," he started, and waited for her eyes to meet his, so that she could see the sincerity on his face. "I believe in you. And we're gonna beat this together." Part of him actually believed it. "We have much left to do. And when we do, I want you to be my bride."

  8. #8
    House Baptiste Evangeline Baptiste's Avatar  
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Posts
    88
    Mentioned
    48 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Tears welled up in Evangeline's eyes, even though the smile that had blossomed on her face remained. Too many things flooded her mind to be said, and none would have done her feelings justice, so instead she took his hand in both of hers and raised it to her lips, shifting the cloth which covered her mouth down and closing her eyes as she kissed it. Of course he would say something like this when she was unable to properly express her feelings; kissing him was too dangerous, and to embrace him would cause him too much pain. The moment he was well enough, though, he was in for all of the affection she'd longed to express.

    Truth be told, the healer was getting tired of being strong. Putting her own problems aside had been something she'd done all her life, but she'd always had her family to go back to and decompress. Theirs was a profession which carried a lot of stress, and so every member of the Baptiste family had developed good listening skills, and they had become closely knit as a result of sharing the failures and triumphs of each member. Now, though, she was isolated from her family, and with Tarran ill there was nobody for her to turn to. His sisters had been kind to her, of course, and they were becoming close, but Eva couldn't unburden her mind to them; their own lives had been much harder than hers in recent years. And so she held it all in: the worries about Tarran, the dislike she had for Tuneric, the helplessness which gripped her more and more frequently. She couldn't wait until the day when they could return home, and doing so as Tarran's wife would make it just that much better.

    "I would like nothing better in the whole of the world," she said quietly, holding his hand to her chest for a moment before releasing him once more, in case the contact hurt him. Her mind raced to imagine their return to her family home, introducing him as her husband. She would be the Lady of his house, when they got back. That was certainly something to think about.

    It was with a sigh that she reigned in her excited imagination; there were still a few major steps between where she was and where she pictured herself, and the most key of those was bringing Tarran through the other side of this illness. "I don't want to speak in absolutes, but I'm very hopeful about this," she said, tapping the rim of his mug. "Another patient I gave an early version of this to was much improved after a few cups, and that was much weaker than this." Some of the other nurses had even begun whispering that the foreigner had found a cure, and although Evangeline refused to use that word, or even entertain the thought at this stage, she felt strongly like she was on the right track. She'd spent more than a few nights working on refining what she'd found, making it more effective, easier to administer, and, consequently, less palatable; gods willing, this would be the key, and it would return strength and health to her love.

  9. #9
    House Hutchinson Tarran Hutchinson's Avatar  
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Posts
    41
    Mentioned
    16 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    "So what you're saying," he began, as he inched himself down into the bed in anticipation of her orders to get more rest, "Is that I should be back to my old self by morning?" He was smiling at himself. He had given up on ever getting better. The young sea captain convinced himself that he only continued to wake up each morning to give Eva something to look forward to. Even if he didn't believe that his current existence was what was best for her, he didn't think that he could bring himself to let her down by just giving in to the debilitating illness.

    Cringing a bit at the effort of getting comfortable, he tried to grit back the pain, at least for her sake. "Gotta get better soon," he said, rolling onto his side and curling his hand around hers. "Can't have you getting too comfortable sleeping alone, after all." He squeezed Eva's fingers, much more weakly than he would have a few months ago, but enough to let her know that he wasn't completely defeated. Releasing her after a moment, he patted her hand lightly. He motioned toward the window, where his valet, against her orders he was sure, had set the small box from his rooms. He was supposed to have no visitors that weren't cleared by Evangeline, but what good was he if he was stripped of his ability to still surprise his love. "Would you bring that here," he asked her, keeping his eyes locked on the window, so that he didn't have to see the angry look she was bound to try and give him.

  10. #10
    House Baptiste Evangeline Baptiste's Avatar  
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Posts
    88
    Mentioned
    48 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    "It is awful lonely, sleeping in the big bed, all alone. I'll have to evict some pillows when you can finally join me." Evangeline had taken to filling the bed with as many pillows as she could, and every morning if she'd actually slept the night before she woke curled around one, and each morning she was faced with the disappointment that it was just a lump of down and cotton rather than the living, breathing man that they were a sorry replacement for. If the ship had been anywhere nearby, she likely would have taken to sleeping there; although he had shared it with her, the cabin was still very much his space, and she longed for the comfort of it.

    Looking where he directed, Evangeline's eyes fell on the box, a foreign and uninvited object in the sterile space. Although he didn't look, she was sure he knew exactly which face she was giving him, but with his gaze unmoving she softened and simply pursed her lips. If he'd been anyone else, she would have had a mighty lecture for him, but as it was she more just wondered how he'd arranged getting anything. Nobody was supposed to visit who she hadn't specifically cleared, and if some poor steward had been made to bring this in, she didn't dare think of how easily that man, or countless others, could have gotten ill, or made Tarran worse. "If you'd wanted something from your things, I could have easily gotten it for you, you know."

    But lectures would do nothing, and Eva rose, moving to retrieve the object in question. Bringing it back, she once more sat beside him, setting the box on her lap facing Tarran so that he could easily access its contents.

  11. #11
    House Hutchinson Tarran Hutchinson's Avatar  
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Posts
    41
    Mentioned
    16 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Tarran forced himself to sit up once more, already feeling a might better, whether it was because of her presence or the concoction, he couldn't be sure. He reached out for the box and pulled it to him, opening it so that only he could see the contents. The item was there as he remembered it. He gasped lightly. He always did when he gazed upon the work of art. It had never been appraised. Allen had told him that so often as it was, that inanimate objects that carried proper names weren't likely to have a value that could be measured. Much like the Righteous Wind.

    The ring was called The Heart of the Rising Tide, and it was magnificent. Five white pearls set beneath a large black one, all set in a band of pure gold. It was likely worth thrice his ship, if such things could be measured. Allen had it commissioned when he was a young man, for the love of his life. The woman who would eventually marry the king, and break Allen's heart. So dedicated was he, that he hadn't even given it to Tarran's mother. But now it was his, to do with as he pleased, and unlike Allen, he would not let his love escape him.

    Sitting up and swinging his legs off the bed so that he could sit at the same level as Eva, he turned the box to face her. "As soon as I am able, I will kneel before you as I should," he promised, a weak smile on his face. "I love you Eva. You are as steady as the stars that have guided me my entire life. And though they remain forever on the horizon, I want you to always be by my side."

  12. #12
    House Baptiste Evangeline Baptiste's Avatar  
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Posts
    88
    Mentioned
    48 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Evangeline regarded Tarran with a healthy amount of bemused suspicion as he rifled through the box, hiding its contents from her. Watching his expressions shift as he came upon the item he'd sought raised even more curiosity in her; there was a look of awe, a gasp...perhaps even a little sadness? It was beginning to make her almost apprehensive, and she felt her heart beating faster in anticipation. What did he have up his sleeve?

    No matter what he held in his hand, though, the simple act of seeing him sitting upright would have been enough to satisfy Eva. He'd been so poorly for so long, having him sit beside her under his own power sent a wave of relief through her so strong it nearly brought tears to her eyes.

    It only took laying eyes on the contents of the small box he held to finish the job. Mouth agape, she brought her fingertips to her lips, her eyes tearing from the beautiful creation before her to meet his own gaze as he began to speak. Tears streaked her cheeks even as her face held more joy than she had ever felt in her whole life, her brows knit together and a smile pulling at her lips. With a gentle tenderness that contrasted the strength of emotion she felt, Evangeline turned and wrapped her arms around the man she loved, holding him as tightly as she felt she could without causing him discomfort. She buried her face in his shoulder, savoring the closeness they hadn't been able to indulge in for far too long. Her tears dampened his shirt and the side of his neck, and finally Evangeline sat up, although she didn't move away. Instead she rested her forehead against his, her dark brown eyes meeting his blues. "Always," she said, the word a promise spoken from her very soul.

  13. #13
    House Hutchinson Tarran Hutchinson's Avatar  
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Posts
    41
    Mentioned
    16 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Tarran could not tell if his fever was returning, or if he was simply flushed from the moment. But either way, he could feel his skin start to glisten with sweat once more. He sat there for a long few moments, letting her rest his head on his, until he felt his chest tighten, and knew that a coughing fit was well on its way. "You have other patients," he said in a coarse voice as the gravel in his throat caused him to turn his head and cough into his sleeve. When he had finished, he swallowed hard and raised his hand to her cheek. "We have the rest of our lives," he told her. "I shouldn't keep you from those who need you more."

    Tipping the cup back to his lips, he made sure there was nothing left before giving it back to her. "You'll be around in the morning I trust? I may not be here. I'm feeling better already," he told her, though he didn't look it. "I may decide to go for a ride, or into town for some sausages." He smiled as he rested his head back against the pillow. His eyes fluttered closed, as he realized how tired he was. "You should get some rest too. I can tell when you are pushing yourself, and you are no good to anyone dead. You've managed to not catch the plague, it would be a pity to work yourself to death, just as I'm getting better.

    After he had put his hand over hers, and allowed himself to take a few breaths, he reassured Eva mildly. "I love you, Doctor Baptiste. And we will be together again soon, I am sure of it."

  14. #14
    House Baptiste Evangeline Baptiste's Avatar  
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Posts
    88
    Mentioned
    48 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Reluctantly, Evangeline let herself be talked back to reality because, as usual, Tarran was right. She did have other patients, and although she arranged her day so that she would have the most time with him, there were still others who needed her attention. Not to mention the fact that Tarran should be resting; he may complain about it, but it really was one of the most important things. His coughing seemed to punctuate her thoughts, and reluctantly, she made to rise.

    "I'll track you down if you're not here when I come," she said with a smile, setting the cup on the tray she'd carried in. As he chastised her for working too much, she removed the trunk from his bedside and placed it back by the window, the ring still tucked safely inside. Then, for one last lingering moment, she sat at his bedside.

    "And I love you, Captain Hutchinson. Rest well, and I'll see you in the morning." Leaning over him, she kissed his forehead, and then stood and took up her tray, blowing out the candles on the far side of the room before slipping quietly out the door. Standing outside his door for a moment, she took a deep breath and wiped away a few tears that had managed to sneak out, before heading off to wash and change and see to the rest of her evening duties.

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •