Michael's Landing


felix_icon.gif teo_icon.gif

Scene Title Michael's Landing
Synopsis Teo pays his old friend to tell him how it all ended and so, after a little gift of parting, it ends.
Date October 4, 2009

St. Luke's Hospital

St. Luke's Hospital is known for its high-quality care and its contributions to medical research. Its staff place an emphasis on compassion for and sensitivity to the needs of their patients and the communities they serve. In addition to nearby Columbia University, the hospital collaborates with several community groups, churches, and programs at local high schools. The associated Roosevelt Hospital offers a special wing of rooms and suites with more amenities than the standard hospital environment; they wouldn't seem out of place in a top-rated hotel. That said, a hospital is a hospital — every corridor and room still smells faintly of antiseptic.

He's awake, off and now, now, courtesy of Deckard. Lazy and dim when he is, but there, blue eyes wandering around the room. Mental note - ask Lee for a poster, or something.

Felix has a visitor. Proactive and terribly bright, a familiar face and one he'd promised to show again. Teo comes in through the door looking characteristically tired in the face without any of the encumbrance showing against the movement of his limbs. He walks without trudging, talks without drifting, sidles past security with paranoia and none of the skittishness that would make it otherwise unmanageable. "You're awake," he observes, by way of greeting. Stopped by the door, bristly head tilted off-axis. "Everything working out all right?"

"I have the phone under my mattress," is Fel's immediate reply, in a dreamy murmur. He's resting on both starchy cotton and the silken waves of morphine, and it's so very, very comfortable. "My leg hurts a lot, but it'll be okay. Your friend away safely? Did he wake up?"

Teo shrugs his shoulder. The wrong shoulder, which makes him frown abruptly, but he doesn't hiss or yowl about it. Rocks back into walking, approaching the bedside on swift strides. He ends up with his fingers stuck underneath the mattress' plump, straight-edged corner, torquing enough force into it to pry it up, making a gap wide enough to slip his other hand through. The search puts his face in a slight squint of concentration. "Not while I was there. He's being looked after; he'll be fine. Thanks for asking. I don't know why he signed in, though. I had to fudge some shit trying to get him signed out on the record early enough this thing wouldn't connect."

That takes a moment to penetrate the silken haze of the morphine. "…..he what?" Fel says, as if hoping it's only the drugs that make him think he heard that. "He signed in as himself?" he murmurs, staring at Teo. "Under my head," he adds, in a whisper.

"Yeah. He didn't smell that drunk, though. I dunno." The rub and scratch of Teo's arm scissors sideways, moving the bump of his reach up under Felix's head. He scrabbles around for a few seconds. Latches his grasp around the first shape he finds: the phone, squashed but none the worse for wear, cool and smooth against his callused digits. Teo's head bobs around for a few seconds longer, at the horizon of Felix's bed's edge like some malformed and ambivalent sunrise-set, before it finally makes up its mind to rise. He flicks the thing open, turns it on with thumb on button, looking at the monitor because it's easier than looking at Felix or any other component of this situation too closely. "Sometimes he is prone to self-destructive behavior."

It works, it's not too beaten up, even if it is a little squished. "Mmhmm," Fel agrees, oh so eloquently. This close, he smells of antiseptic soap, sickness, but no longer of sweat and corruption. He's still bird frail, bones of his face fiercer and sharper than ever.

The tiny screen lights up. All parts jingling and squaring into view, no visible damage or adjustments made. A glance down the phonebook assures him that most of the sensitive numbers that might otherwise have been stolen out of its Sim card had already been in the Russian's possession before. "I don't know if he plans on fixing your foot.

"I didn't really see this coming: last we fought about getting you healed, it ended pretty badly. Not to flatter myself, but I don't think any of our other friends did any better. There should be a way, though. Hadley might be able to finish it." It is a logical progression of thought, options laid out for exploration. Pragmatism's always the available alternative to awkwardness. Even if he has the distinct suspicion that Felix is too stoned to remember anything he's saying.

Which would be right. Fel glances down at the mass of unfinished bone and sinew that ends his left leg. Not even suitable for a prosthesis, at the moment. "I'm amazed he was here at all. First I thought he was with Humanis and this was….was some new place of theirs, you know? But that didn't make sense. And he'd not've woken me up to kill me."

"Well, you were comatose and probably brain-damaged awhile," Teo answers, benignly. "You can't be expected to realize some guy whose life you came this close to ruining isn't here to kill you on your death bed." Satisfied that technology has not been tampered with in a way that he would object to, he turns it off again, squirms his hip in his jeans to make room enough to shove the thing in his pocket. "Have they had someone in here to take your statement or anything? We haven't caught Emile Danko or William Dean. I don't think anyone any good leads on them, legal or otherwise."

Felix nods. "I've ID'ed Danko. I don't know Dean," Fel says, in a mumble. His face is weirdly soft and open. Young, actually, without that reserve acquired after so very many years as a cop.

He was like this the last time Teo saw him come back from the dead. He studies that face for another stilted second or two. "Blondish, graying. Really fuckin' tall— probably has three or four inches on me. Round face. Hard eyes, I think." He smoothes his shirt down over the freshly filled pocket. "I don't know if the various and sundry clandestine operations working that want the police to know so— I'm not sure why I'm telling you," he admits, awkwardly.

That transparency makes the bitterness that comes all the more virulent, for all that Fel's body does not tense with it. "I know him," he says, with the finality of a judge. "I'd know him anywhere." Amazing how suffering imprints a face on the memory. Almost like love.

The silence sort of hangs there for a moment, like a dead thing from a noose, penduluming faintly in the subtle motion of air.

"Do you have a plan yet?" Teo asks, finally. "Know when you'll be discharged? Or is it too soon?" He's awful at lying around in bed and taking it easy, himself. Doctor's orders or no. There's a half dozen physicians still at home who remember him for his inability to follow those. It's the first thing he thinks of, grasping at the pinestraw of conversational topics, despite that Felix is such a poor thin thing under the wrinkle and lump of blankets.

Felix shakes his head, gently. "No. They have to see about the foot, fit me for a prosthesis if they can. I'm very weak. It'll be a while. When I can, I'll resign my badge, set up a further round of doctors for the aftercare." He's all very matter of fact about it, a little distant. Like it's just paperwork.

Funerals are just paperwork too, depending on who you ask. Teo's eyes flick up and down again, light refracting uncertainly across the pale rims of his irises, emphasizing the smallest adjustments of his attention in the pits of his head with visible transitions of color. He doesn't know what he should look at. "Okay," he says. Clears his throat, after another moment. "That sounds like a decent plan. I'm…" A staggered beat's silence. There's a cough, second; there's nothing left in his throat to clear. "I'm sorry."

He's wept aloud, even in the cotton white confines of his hospital room, where pain is kept at bay by a whole pack of nurse-Cerberi. Moaned in pain like an animal. But the fit's not on him now, so Fel's limp and weary, washed-up. regarding Teo with eyes like shadows on glacier ice. "Thank you," he says, finally.

It's weird to see Felix like this. He's almost unrecognizable, dwindled so far down and summarily shoved so far away, out of this fight that even Teo's protection has become utterly, completely irrelevant to him. There's silence from the Sicilian, considering, despite that there's no real conclusion he could reach that isn't already served up on the cold platter and a bloody wet shade of rare.

Abruptly, he ducks his head down to look inside his jacket, popping button, peeling the zip down his chest before fetching something out of a tug-stretched collar, unlooping it from his neck. It's small. Heavier than its size would lead you to think: a handful of silver, pendant and chain link, worn by contact and abrasion, approximating the fierce heat of Teo's metabolism from at least an hour's length of contact.

"Yours," he says. It's Michael.

There's only that well-padded confusion in his face for a moment, as he takes it, cupping it in a palm. A gift? Not quite, something lost returned. Fel stares down into it, past it, as if it were a wishing well, a scrying glass. "I thought I lost this on Staten, when Deckard killed me. He looted my corpse and gave this to you?" The memories attached to it are oddly heated, for an item supposedly holy in nature - the gleam of it againt sweat-slicked skin.

"No," Teo answers. That's all, for a few long seconds. 'No.' Good answer. Incomplete answer, but more than he particularly wanted to admit. "Anyway— I know it's yours. I figured you should have him back." The high General of God's armies, patron of police and soldiers everywhere, the archetypical warrior presiding over a demon that writhes, snarling, under his feet and the scintillating trajectory of his sword. Teo doesn't know why Felix should have it back now, but there's no lie in the way he phrased that. "And I think this is good-bye. Liz'll let you know if something comes up with Humanis First!, but—

"I don't want to bother you anymore with all the brimstone and wreckage of chapters previous, eh? I hope things stay quiet for you." He reaches down, across, squeezes Felix's shoulder once, gently, his thumb smoothing one infinitessimal wrinkle in the fabric of Felix's hospital smock, something wintry about his face. Little innocence, weird mourning; his relationships seem to get less tangible, more abstract, with every day and every inch that the ghost and Teo's respective futures pull apart from one another.

"How did you get this?" Fel's tone is firm, if quiet, none of its previous quaver. He still feels stripped, exposed, pried out of his protective shell. The bones of his shoulder are too easily felt, even under such a casual touch. Too easily seen, the collarbone straining stark against the skin where the gown has slipped down, his body pared by sickness.

The hand relinquishes its hold on the Russian's shoulder, retreats into his pocket. Firmer or no, there isn't anything in Felix's voice to find purchase in the flattening absence of feeling in Teo's face.

He doesn't look at the Special Agent, avoids burdening the older man with his stare the same way he'd avoided looking at Sonny earlier in the day. It's a good day to avoid getting close enough to things to look at them clearly. "Bye, Ivanov." With the potential exception of cancer doctors, no one is good at good-byes, but even Teo knows that it's better to make them as painless as possible. It's the end of a thing. It seems unnecessary cruelty, a waste of sweat or sanguinity, to make a thing out of it. He steps away, turns.

He doesn't raise his voice, but lowers it. Like that might make Teo attend him. "How did you get this?" There's pleading there, now. He doesn't know the questions to ask, the words to say. How to ask him to stay. Leland's been there, faithful, offering care in the form of food. But this is another loss. "What happened? No one will tell me how they found me."

Pleading works better, despite that it shouldn't make a difference, not after all of the existential gymnastics Teo's gone through the effort of working out in his head. He pauses, mid-stride, his leading foot settled on the linoleum and the following one tilted up, creased by the stride that he didn't quite finish. He doesn't set his feet down even, though: acquiescence didn't quite register in his mind as a coherent decision.

His back is still turned and his voice scraping low, grudging, when he answers before he's even consciously committed himself to doing so: "I got it on the beach. Staten." His head turns slightly, doesn't quite turn back, an eye angled backward out of the aquiline, austerely clean lines of his profile. He snatches his gaze back, after a moment, scuffs his fingers through the shorter-shaven hairs at the base of his head, rifling his feet back into movement. "Humanis First! burned down the Guiding Light Baptist Church with Pastor Sumter, Mona Rao, and you hanging by the necks on the street lamps in front of it. Despite their diversion— a simultaneous attack on the Suresh Center, we got to you and Sumter in time.

"The rest you know. G'night." Neither answer was constituted of truth, whole and unadulterated, but it's more than most people get in New York City these days, and certainly more than most get from Teodoro Laudani. His paces don't make a sound, as he finishes his flight toward the door.

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