Bedside Manners

London | February 5, 1986

CRACK! The two distraught women appear in the lobby, covered in blood. Max struggles to hold Paige upright as the woman is now fully unconscious. "HELP!" Two attendants rush to their side. "Her father is Nate O'Calahan, can you please reach him?" One of the witches nods quickly and helps levitate Paige to a stretcher. Max looks around quickly for Darius.

Darius is pacing nearby, having rushed to intake after hearing Max's call on his mirror. The commotion has him rushing over until he spots Paige on the stretcher. "What happened?" he asks, presumably of Max since Paige doesn't appear in any state to answer. As the nurses start levitating Paige away, he steps forward to follow.

Paige, in her unconscious state, has bleed quite nicely over her lovely dress which is also ripped along her right side. And that right side has been rather sliced open with bits of wall and column from the explosion. She’s also got a burn along her left arm.

"There were some assholes who blew up the party we were in. There was an explosion and she took the hit for me." Max's eyes start to tear up a bit. "Darius she saved my life. She didn't even think about herself. God, I hope she's going to be ok. She's been bleeding for…ever." She wipes away the tears and straightens up. "Let me get out of the way. Do your thing."

Darius does his thing. Paige is levitated to the trauma unit first though, and nurses do a lot of the work really. And then as soon as Darius has ensured for himself that Paige is not dead, and probably not going to die, he steps back and lets the Healers who are actually scheduled to be working the trauma ward do their thing. Bits of concrete are pulled away, wounds are cleanly closed up, and a potion is forced down Paige's unconscious lips to help her body replenish the blood she's lost. After all the hullaballoo, Darius and Max are left in a small, curtained-off area of the ward, with a still-unconscious Paige wearing a clean hospital gown under crisp sheets. She could just be sleeping, if not for the fact that her hair is still a bit dishelved, and she's still rather pale. Darius is leaning against the wall, staring at the floor and with his hands shoved deep into his pockets. There's a couple of chairs, but he's been a ball of anxiety for some time now, and couldn't force himself to sit.

Max is slumped back in her chair, exhausted. She’s still wearing the gown she ripped in two and looks quite a mess. For once, she can’t even make idle chat with Darius. Her only wishes are for Paige to wake up with little to no pain. And maybe for a coffee.

As the blood replenishers work their magic after the healing it’s still a little while before Paige starts to stir. She twitches just a little before her heavy eyelids start to peel open. She blinks a few times, adjusting her eyes to the light and looking around for a moment. Those blue eyes look at least semi alert, though a bit blood-shot at the moment. She shifts her body slightly, wincing before she stops trying to move. Once she’s still again she finally blinks at the two people in the room rather blankly, eyes settling on Darius. “Who are you? Are you my healer? What happened?” she croaks out softly, looking rather confused.

Darius perks up when she starts to move around. He moves to her bedside and checks one of the magical monitors as she starts to talk, but her words cause him to furrow his brow and look down, studying her. “Do you remember your name, or what day it is?” He asks in return.

Max shoots up to her feet when Paige awakens. She gives Darius space, since after all, he’s the healer here. At Paige’s questions, her eyes well up with tears again. “Please…don’t say she can’t remember us…” she says under her breath. Then louder, “Darius what’s wrong with her?”

Paige eyes Darius as he comes closer to her bed, watching him carefully before nodding. "Sure. Paige O'Calahan." She tips her head to the side, looking very innocently up at him, meeting his gaze. "If you're my healer, do I get a sponge bath at least?" She is very determinedly not looking at Max yet.

Darius looks back to the monitors, still frowning. “And what is today’s date?” He asks again, tapping the readings he’s looking at with his wand.

Paige finally glances at Max, giving her a small, warm smile. “Well, he’s no fun is he, Max?” She tries shift again which leaves her wincing and coughing slightly. “I’m fine, Dare, really,” she murmurs, looking back at him with not a big, but warm smile, reaching an arm out to try to touch his arm gently. She glances at Max again. “You’re okay? Not hurt?”

“Oh holy shit, Paige! That was NOT funny!” Max snaps at her. She takes a second to cool down before crossing her arms. “I’m ok. I’m glad you’re safe, though.” Her words are tense, she had clearly been thinking the worst for a while. “I’m going to mirror Jonas. Eat your jello.” Max exits and walks down the hallway a bit before pulling out her mirror.

Darius let’s out a long sigh when he realizes she’s joking. Closing his eyes and leaning his forehead against the monitor, he says, “That was really not funny.” He looks tired; like he hasn’t slept in some time. He slumps down into a chair then, and reaches for Paige’s hand. Max leaving only barely registers.

“It was a /little/ funny. Have to lighten the mood somehow,” Paige replies to them both, still trying to smile. She’s clearly in pain, but doing her best to hide it. She looks at Max, nodding. “Good. I’m glad you’re okay.” She just gives one more nod as Max disappears to call Jonas before looking at Darius. Her expression softens as she looks him over, just taking a moment to take him in. When he takes her hand she wraps the other hand around his as well, lifting it to her lips if he’ll let her to plant a soft kiss against his fingers before pressing them against her cheek for a moment. She closes her eyes briefly letting out a small breath as she opens them again. “Are you okay?” she murmurs, looking at him rather seriously, despite the fact she is the one in the hospital bed.

“Yea,” Darius responds, leaning over to pinch the bridge of his nose. “I just really could use a proper night’s sleep. I’m back on the clock in… five hours?” He glances around for a clock, but there isn’t one nearby so he slumps back in the chair instead. “So what happened? Why were you attacked?”

Paige gives a little nod. "You should get some sleep then." She glances away from him after a moment, staring across the little area and at the small opening in the curtains where Max disappeared. "I don't know. It was a party in Paris for a modeling agency. I normally never go, but Max and I thought it would be fun to go to Paris for a few days, get away. And someone started firing spells." She closes her eyes again, pulling one hand back to pretend to itch at her eye to wipe away a tear that is creeping out as the shock finally starts to settle. "There was fire and part of the wall started exploding and Max…" She pushes her eyes together more tightly before opening them again. "Wrong place, wrong time, I think. I'm just glad Max is okay."

And speak of the devil, Max returns. “Paige you hungry? Jonas is asking if we want food.” She halts, glancing back and forth between the two of them. “Well you’re not dead, honey, why are we crying?” She refers more to the stale room than to Paige in particular. But still, foot in mouth disease.

Darius sits up straighter once his hand is free, although he’s still looking at his hands as she talks. When Max returns, he nods to acknowledge her. “Who’s Jonas?” he asks, still sounding more tired than actually curious for the moment.

Paige looks up when Max comes back, shaking her head. “I’m fine, tell him thanks though.” She furrows her brow, “No crying. I’m fine. Healing right up.” At Darius question she glances briefly towards him again, but she’s leaving the answer for that one up to Max.

“He’s a friend,” Max replies coyly. “We’ll, uh, about that later. How’s the prognosis, Master Nos?” If it sounds like she’s changing the subject, it’s because she is. “Any internal bleeding or anything?”

“Oh, no, Paige will be fine. She’s a trooper,” Darius responds, turning to smile at Paige. He gets distracted again though, and looking to Max adds, “Wait, can this friend of yours bring me some food? I skipped dinner.”

“Yup, I’ll be fit as a fiddle. Darius is used to me nearly dying,” Paige murmurs, leaning her head back on her pillows. “When do I get to go home?” she asks, trying unsuccessfully to make herself more comfortable.

Max sighs and pulls out her mirror again. "Yeah, yeah, I'll get you food. Paige, you just rest ok? Let's make sure you're good and then we'll head home." With that she exits again to make her call.

Darius winces at Paige’s words. He nods his thanks to Max, then turns back to the hospital bed. “I am not,” he says with a frown. “Not in a long time, at least. How does trouble always find you?”

Paige turns her head to the side to look at Darius, letting the silence linger a moment after his question before shrugging. “Just lucky, I suppose. Bad habit of not getting out. Panic that something is going to happen to someone I care about. All of the above.” She presses her lips together in thought. “Want to go to dinner with me?” she asks after a moment, a tiny smile fidgeting at her lips. “I mean, once I’m not in here and you’ve had a bit of sleep.”(edited)

Darius watches her, first in disbelief, then breathing out a short laugh. It’s not an unkind laugh, more the sort that stems from being a little delirious from exhaustion. “Are you seriously asking me out right now?” He asks, hiding a small smile behind his lips as he rubs his face.(edited)

“Um. Yes? It seems like the perfect time really,” Paige says a bit sheepishly, and still a delirious in her own pain, but she’s still got a faint smile twitching at her lips. “It might be nice to you know, casually hang out with our clothes on.” She gives a tiny grin, looking at him still.(edited)

“No,” Darius says, still behind his hands. “This is literally the worst possible time. Let’s not do this here.” When he lowers his hand, still with that somewhat-delirious smile. “I mean, yea, we can go eat or whatever. But I’m not going to talk about this now. Just… focus on feeling better? Please?”

“Well I’m not actually suggesting we talk about anything,” Paige replies softly. “I’m just suggesting we spend some time together. And having just been brought into the hospital with serious injuries, from my perspective it seems like a good time since it’s a good reminder that you never know what will happen. And I want to spend some time with you, so I’m asking.” She gives a tiny little shrug. “Yes, yes. I will focus on feeling better.”

Darius finally brushes his hands off his face and rubs them against his pants instead, sitting up straighter as he does. “I’m can’t get into this right now,” he repeats. “You should be discharged in the morning. My work schedule is a little crazy right now, but I have next Tuesday off if you want to talk then?”

“I was thinking we go eat something, maybe do some dancing, but sure. We can talk.” Paige furrows her brow slightly but just gives a nod. “Go get some sleep.”

Darius opens his mouth, about to say more… but then he doesn’t. He only nods, and reaches out to squeeze her arm gently before saying, “Talk soon.” He closes the curtains that segment off Paige’s bed when he leaves, and makes it as far as the hallway before he stops to lean against the wall. He reaches up to unbutton the top button of his shirt, as if he’s trying to catch his breath.

Paige pats her other hand on top of his hand squeezing his arm, nodding. “See you Tuesday,” she murmurs. She watches him leave, waiting until the curtain is closed before rolling into her side and pulling her knees towards her chest and closing her eyes rather tightly.


ArannahMithren Nilli

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