Doctor And Patient


alexander_icon.gif sal_icon.gif

Scene Title Doctor and Patient
Synopsis …that's all Sal and Alexander are to each other. Both men deftly avoid talking about Teo as the doc gives Alexander a new face.
Date May 21, 2009

The Old Dispensary

Sal is all packed and ready to head to the mountains with Teo for a few days. But first, he's heard through the grapevine that Alexander needs a new face to avoid being thrown back in Moab again. Given that the ability to give new identities to fugitives is one of the most important ways he contributes, he could hardly run off out of the city with that hanging in the air.

Never mind the potentially painful awkwardness that this will no doubt be.

He's in the clinic and is idly sorting out a few things as he waits for his patient. There's a small suitcase on wheels not far by. Teo's going to meet him here before they hit the road.

Al's in his usual uniform of white t-shirt, jeans, belt, boots. He knocks diffidently on the frame of the door, even though it's already half-open.

Sal doesn't look anything like the man that Al's met before. It might take him a second to tell if he's really got the right person. "Hey," he gives his best, polite smile. "Glad to see you're back safe and sound. Come in."

And his voice is appropriately tentative. "You'd be … were…Doctor Bianco?" he says, smiling back in turn, though it's uncertain.

"Yeah. Still am. Just…call me Sal, for the time being. Silvatti, is the alias. Not doctor unless Hana sets me up again. Haven't found the courage to go ask her yet." Sal screwed up the last identity. If he approaches the technopath, he'll do so hat in hand. "Don't blame you for wanting a new face. I…can switch you back a lot easier than I used to be able to, so you're aware. I can make you yourself again if the heat comes off." He's got a good bedside manner. He can pretend the personal stuff doesn't exist, at least while there are other things to talk about.

Which Al is apparently delighted to do, too. "Wonderful. I already owe you a lot," he says, as he comes in, closing the door behind him. "Guess this'll be the second," He sounds a little wry about that. Hell of a person to be in debt to.

Or a good person to, given Sal's not likely to call in any favours. "Don't owe me anything, Alex. I'm part of Phoenix now. I'm doing my part. Hop up on the table, lie down. Do you know what you want to look like?" His voice, face, and even body shape are all different, but the way he moves, his bedside manner and professionalism are all still Sonny Bianco.

"Just different," Al says, quietly, as he removes his shoes, and obligingly lies down on the table. "Up to you," He sounds not at all enthused about the whole affair.

Sal purses his lips into a thin line. "Al. It's the face you're going to have to look at in the mirror for the conceivable future. Give me some guidelines. This isn't a good thing for me to go into randomly." The doc walks around to the head of the examining table and sets his hands gently on either side of Alexander's face. He doesn't begin anything though. "Probably shift your colouring. That's usually the easiest way to throw people off. And a few basic feature changes."

There's a rasping chuckle from Alex. "I don't know. Good-lookin', but not too much so?" he says, eyes rolling as he peers up at Sonny. "Color works, and features. Nothing too exotic."

The doc splays his fingers against Al's cheeks. His touch is firm, but gentle. "I need you to relax, and stay still no matter what, all right? This is going to feel stranger than fixing your scars." Strange to invoke that night, stranger still to realize that Al kissed him before Teo did, though for all the wrong reasons.

""Right," Al says, agreeably, and closes his eyes. Wrong reasons. Well, that's the story of Al's life, isn't it?

The feeling is strange, but Sal's gotten better at making this process less disturbing for people. It still takes a great deal of effort, because he's making up a face on the fly. He closes his eyes and presses his fingers more firmly against Al's temples. First, he changes the colouring. From redhead to brunette. A strong, distinctive jawline, strong nose, but all asthetic if not conventionally, GQ-attractive. A type, to be certain.

He takes another deep, slow breath and then slides fingers around Al's throat. The touch is gentle, but tingles a little. Feels a bit like having a sore throat, but the sensation subsides. "O…kay." He slowly releases and sits up. "I can tweak anything you like, but it's an idea, anyway." He wheels the stool over, picks up a hand mirror and passes it to Alex.

It is skin-crawlingly creepy. Literally, in a way. "Beautiful job you've done there," he approves.And he's not even being sarcastic. "It'll be nice to be someone different," Try as he might to prevent it, there's a faintly plaintive note in his voice.

"It's…not such a bad thing," says the guy who just had a life makeover of his own. Sal examines Al like the way a sculptor might a piece of work. "Hold on a sec, something's…" He reaches out and lays a hand along the other man's cheek. There's a brief sensation as he adjusts the aesthetics of his face to be more symmetrical. "There. Everything was just a little off."

"Better you'n joining the French Foreign Legion," Al says, with a sudden twinkle to his gaze. "Thanks again, doc. Anything more?"

Sal lifts up a hand, then lets it fall. "If you're satisfied with that face, nope. If anything's bothering you, I'd be happy to tweak you come Monday. I'm going to be spending a lot of time here after I get back. I've got…some research to do." Helena said to keep the formula quiet. Even though he's fairly certain Alexander knows all about it, he'll keep his mouth shut unless told otherwise.

Apparently it doesn't bear speaking of. Al looks thoughtful, but not particularly puzzled, really. "Sure." Another glance in the mirror, this one wondering rather than vain. And with that, he's heading for the door.

Sal stays for a minute to give Alexander time to leave. Then he'll roll his little suitcase out the door to go meet Teo. He can feel for the guy. He can imagine how he'd feel in Al's shoes.

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