A Terminally Ill Party


sonny_icon.gif zachery_icon.gif

Scene Title A Terminally Ill Party
Synopsis Sonny and Zachery meet and chat about the fact that they're both black sheep in the world of medicine.
Date December 29, 2008

A Rented Hall

A party. That is to say, a poorly decorated hall rented out to house a few dozen people for a few hours, with the choice of either hanging out over at the finger foods and drinks, mingling with the crowd, or smoothly combine the two. There's a common theme among the ones present— A neurosurgeon is standing proudly somewhere in the middle of it all handing out his card to a new acquaintance, a pediatrician talks to another man enthusiastically, gesturing wildly and easily heard over the chatter of other people. And then… then there is someone who hasn't introduced himself just yet. Zachery stands in a corner near the edibles, boredly stuffing one of the bite-sized snacks into his mouth while someone tirelessly yaps at him. He hardly even notices it when the man walks away in an attempt to harass someone else. Why am I here again? Oh yes, the holidays. That, and ignoring the invitation would just be bad manners. And free food.

You'd think with all the money, stress and mental issues that doctors have, they'd put on a better party. Sonny's been hearing about these things for years, but has never had time in his tightly packed holiday schedule. Until this year. He told his parents months ago that it was just far too many parties. It's not an election year, there's no controversial items on the table, so this year, there's a break from the politicking.

The cosmetic surgeon could never believe that this party is as bad as it is, and he's been dying to feel like more of a -practicing- doctor. Reconnecting with other physicians seems like the way to do it, right? The address is checked and double-checked, before the be-suited young doctor finally decides this -has- to be the right place. Given how few people there are present, many notice him and whisper. He isn't exactly well-respected. A surgeon who rarely uses a scalpel is no doctor at all, right? Not that cosmetic surgeons were at the top of the ethic doctor heap to begin with. He clears his throat, then makes a sudden beeline for the drinks.

Even if he's not paying much attention to his surroundings, Zachery can't help but notice the sudden quietening of the room. He tilts his head, searching curiously for the cause of the hushed voices. Huh. Once Sonny has been spotted, the coroner finally moves away from his spot, meandering over to the drinks with a hint of a grin on his lips. Finally a semblance of someone interesting.

"If you're looking for something to dull your mind," The ex-Brit notes bemusedly, shooting Sonny a glance, "don't go for the punch. It's just a bowl of fruit juice."

Sonny wrinkles his nose. "Figures. What, did the podiatrists organize the party this year?" He grins a little, then grabs a bottle of wine. He pours himself a little into a plastic goblet. With a crack in it. The wine promptly starts to dribble out. And then, he starts to -laugh-. He puts a hand up to his mouth to try and stop it from coming and stop the additional looks coming his way. But he can't help it. It's just so sad.

"You know, I've honestly stopped caring." Zachery smirks wryly, "You should have heard the puns earlier, at the—" He stops, watching Sonny's unsuccessful attempt at pouting himself a drink and… apparently finding amusement in this fact. Zachery can't help but chuckle, and after a second of staring grabs a second cup and offers it in Sonny's direction. "Only quality for us lifesavers, eh?"

"Quality. I think this is Ernest and Julio Gallo wine. Big spenders." With some effort, Sonny manages to pour the wine into the other plastic cup. He grabs for a napkin to swab off his hand. In spite of it all, a few of the other docs who weren't directly responsible for the party cover their mouths to keep from laughing. "Oh, you see the looks they're giving me? It's because I don't save lives."

Zachery pours a cup of his own - making sure it is, in fact, an uncracked one first. "Ah— neither do I. At least, not…" He stops, narrows his eyes at the day's choice of laughing stock, and ponders for a moment. "I'm sorry, am I supposed to know who you are like everyone seems to? I'm ever so bad with faces."

The curly-haired doc shrugs his shoulder and maybe even blushes just a tad. He clears his throat, then offers his hand. "Sonny Bianco." The last name at least, should ring a bell. It's the same as the mayor's. Other than that? He's the registered Evolved doctor who gives women big tits and nose jobs with his power rather than with a scalpel and implants. "Uh, cosmetic surgery."

Bad with faces, maybe, but that name does more than just ring a bell. As is more than clear by the amused grin that soon finds itself on Zachery's face. "Aha! Yes, now all of this makes sense." The offered hand is shaken - firmly bit almost too brusquely for comfort. "Out of the norm, out of the cliques. At least the lesser ones." He mutters with an eyeroll, then adds, "Zachery Miller. Coroner over at Harlem Morgue."

"Yes, well," Sonny takes a quick gulp of the wine that nearly empties the little plastic cup. Those things aren't very big! "…you see why I've never come before now. What people don't realize is that I couldn't work my ability without my medical training. So it's not really so different, and…I'm sorry. You're actually -talking- to me. So I'll spare you the defense." He smiles and shakes the other man's hand. "Coronor, huh? Well. We just need to find ourselves a chiropractor and then we can start an outsiders club."

"Don't worry, I'm plenty used to having people yap at me, after an hour of hanging around here." Zachery sparsely chuckles again, and calmly takes a sip of his drink. "No kidding, though. You'd be our plastic surgeon, celebrity and token Evolved all in one." Nevermind the fact that he himself could give the crowd a mental medical check-up if he wanted to.

"Oh, I wouldn't call myself a -celebrity-. Normal people don't tend to care who I am." Sonny reaches for the bottle and starts to refill the glass. He frowns at the tiny thing, then tosses it aside and fills up the bottom bit of a beer cup instead. Classy. "I've no doubt you get the cold shoulder too. The ghoul." He chuckles at that. "It's all right. These people never think much of you unless you're a heart or a neurosurgeon. And those guys are far too stressed to -ever- come to a party."

"The good ones, at least." Zachery mutters, finishing his own cup and turning it idly between three fingers. "Every group needs its outcasts to make the rest feel like special little snowflakes. Then again, I wasn't much of a mingler back when I still worked at a hospital, so maybe I was doomed from the start." Though he doesn't seem particularly crushed about this fact. Quite the opposite; almost proud.

"That's why it's a relief to have my own clinic. Coming out, for the lack of a better term, is turning out to be one of the best things I ever did," but Sonny's expression darkens almost as soon as he says that. He clears his throat and flashes a smile to Zachery. "I'm the boss. I don't have to work with anyone who looks down on me for using my natural talent."

"Is that what it is?" Zachery answers, forcing a smile back. He doesn't sound disapproving, but plays the part of unknowing and un-evolved pretty well. "I mean, you've been given something and you may as well use it, but doesn't it feel like you're a step ahead of everyone else? Unfairly? I don't know how I'd cope with something like that."

"Well, what's fair? Is it fair for the guy whose got a knack for heart surgery to not perform it just because he's a step ahead?" Sonny's eyebrows arch. "Besides, the moment my secret got out there, there wasn't any -way- I was going to get out of doing it. There's massive demand for outpatient procedures with no recovery time." That, and politics. Those rich people whose daughters want the procedure are the ones who would support his father politically.

Zachery appears dubious for a minute, but… isn't one to linger on these matters, and then merely nods. "Point taken. Life's not a contest, I suppose. I just can't imagine being in your place, with so many people holding a grudge against you for doing what you do best. Not to mention not… rebuilding these people's faces in their sleep or something." It's out before he knows it, but he doesn't seem to regret the comment, cracking a grin.

"Well, to be perfectly fair," says Sonny as he reaches for an appetizer and sniffs it before taking a bite, "…some of it's politics." He shrugs. "But that, I'm fairly used to. It's also professional jealousy. It's easier for me to perform the same procedures and I get twice, to three times the money and am never without patients. Not that I haven't considered a little face-rearranging revenge." He chuckles.

"I make enemies working wonders with the dead," The coroner's right hand curls into a fist at that point, fingers covering a hardly noticeable but long scar on his palm, "so you, working actual wonders with the living, can't be making many friends." He pauses only for a beat, before adding, "—Ah, ones that don't end up paying you for your favors, at least."

"What kind of wonders do you work with the dead?" asks Sonny. He sounds quite honestly curious. He bravely tries another appetizer. This one makes him pull a face, but he chews it politely anyway. "My father's position both gives me new sorts of enemies and protects me from others. If I was strictly a private citizen, I'd no doubt be the subject of more harassment. I have been picketed by a feminist group who accused me of promoting negative body image. Despite the fact that these women would be getting surgery anyway and that I'm not telling them how they should look. They pay me, and I do what they want me to do." He shrugs.

"People can be strange that way. They've got to blame someone." Zachery eyes the appetizers as well, and his closed hand opens back up to be reached toward the edibles. Or are they edibles? One of the fingerfoods is stared at intently for no readily apparent reason. "I only do my work. I seem to have a knack for figuring things out slightly faster than my colleagues." He looks up at Sonny's face for a moment, but then quickly back to the table. "Deductive reasoning, recognizing patterns, luck, talent, who knows. I enjoy what I do, I suppose that helps too."

Barely edibles, from the faces Sonny is making. "By 'things,' I assume you mean causes of death? Oh, stay away from the red things. They're…yeah. Just don't touch them. I think the sauce has gone off." He takes a rather large sip of wine to get the taste out of his mouth. "I suppose being a coroner is a bit like being a detective -and- a doctor. Morbidity aside, I can see why it would be interesting. Far more interesting than making every other woman look like Angelina, Britney or Paris. I never thought beauty would get dull."

"When beauty is…" Zachery pauses for a moment, head twitching sideways slightly as he peers at what's next to the 'red things'. The yellow things don't look all that tasty either. His hand lowers again, in favor of his health and tastebuds. Ahem. "When beauty is the likeness of retouched women's magazine covers, I can imagine." Then, he nods, reaching to take off his glasses and clean them on a sleeve- cracked lens or not, this seems to have grown into a bit of a tick. "But yes, it is interesting, at times. I take pride in what I do, even if it leaves me reaching into long-rotten abdomens and smelling of antiseptics wherever I go." Eheh. "In fact, I'm starting to feel like I might just leave this place and go back to work." Working in the evenings is not unfamiliar territory for the coroner.

If Sonny's appetite wasn't taken away by the 'red things,' then 'rotten abdomens' seals the deal. "Strange the contrast between what we do. Mine leaves no mark at all and is worked upon the living. Yours, well, you don't have to worry so much about how your patients look," His smile is wry. "I can work my ability on the dead too. Not that I've had any reason to." Officially. Lots of government agencies have him in their books in case a switcheroo is needed. "And I don't blame you for taking off. It's not like this place is jumping. People aren't even drunk." That at least would make it bearable.

Zachery chuckles dryly, and shoots the drinks one more look before deciding that… nah. Even he has better taste than this. "If you're ever tired of the Barbies and Kens, you should think about offering your services to a funeral home some time. If you don't mind the embalming fluid." This may or may not be a joke, but he leaves little time for interpretation, already stepping back from the table and looking around for the door. "Either way, it was nice to meet you, Dr. Bianco." If not sincere, at least he's bothering to be polite.

"Hey, thanks for talking to me. Hope your reputation doesn't suffer for it," then Sonny's smiling in a way that most people consider charming. "The problem with that is, even the dead want to look like Paris. Either that or they'd just look like they died way, way too young. A corpse should look like a corpse, you know?" He lifts a shoulder. "Have a good evening, Dr. Miller. And Happy New Year."

December 29th: Not Purgatory
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