Proper Utilization


bao-wei_icon.gif bella_icon.gif m_alex_icon.gif

Scene Title Proper Utilization
Synopsis Dr. Sheridan's successful treatment of Mortimer Jack is demonstrated to Dr. Cong via practical (and somewhat dangerous) demonstration.
Date June 19, 2010

Staten Island Hospital

Conference room.

Patience is a virtue, but progress pays the bills. If Bella were not operating under a certain sense of personal urgency and the rather wide ethical leeway the project affords her, she wouldn't rush Mortimer out of the clean room and into the only-so-sterile halls of the facility proper. She'd give him days to build his immune system back up to full strength, make sure the last appreciable traces of the virus she gave him were wiped from his blood tests. She'd be safer. She's be patient. But she wants to forge ahead.

Mortimer's health, then, is kept intact only due to a very generous dose of full spectrum anti-biotics, a massive assault on all possible viral variants that may have brewed in his interior. Like this, he should be fine, weaned off bit by bit until his white blood cells are ready to take over the task of keeping him healthy again. He should seem healthy and alert and a-okay. At least, enough of all these things to be presented to Dr. Sheridan's peers.

Bella has request Dr. Cong join her in one of the under-used conference rooms where once board meetings and disciplinary hearings were held during this place's time as a legitimate hospital. Rather than risk his snubbing her, she declined to be mysterious or court surprise. She was very clear: she has developed a method for restoring lost abilities in a specific subject. Not grand, not ambitious, but most definitely a breakthrough. If this fails to garner at least his attention, Bella figures, he's a lost cause.

For the purposes of demonstration, Bella has brought with her a box of assorted electronic components (batteries, wiring, LEDs) as well as small-scale mechanical parts (small wheels and axels, a motor, some busted old pocket watch innards) and some various miscellany (busted lenses, bits of plastic casing, steel wool). She has faith Mortimer will be able to manage something or other using all this whatnot.

The woman herself has a binder under her arm, as well her customary clip board. She gives Mortimer a grateful, if rather satisfied, smile. "I would appreciate if you would knock him dead," she confides, in what time she has before Dr. Cong's arrival, "Though please, only in the figurative sense. I think we'd both like to see the light of day again." Or maybe for the first time, in Alex's case.

"This is all very nice, I only wish I didn't have to wait for him to get here." Alex's eyes are normal right now, but he did look over it a bit earlier. He's taken a seat at the table, fiddling around with random parts, not trying to build anything, just assessing without his ability. "I've begun to feel a rising urge to be violent, nothing I can't handle at the moment, but I believe that chemical imbalance Mortimer worries about so much is starting to take hold."

"It you'd continue to be a dear and hold down that urge, it would make both our lives much longer and easier," Bella confides, "We'll be getting you your medication as soon as we can. It's not a terribly common condition you have, and I didn't want it potentially interfering with the performance of your ability."

Cong had been relocated for the past week, to one of the labs running tests on the original set of formula; this had essentially left Bella, her team, and her few patients to themselves without much in terms of bother from him. Though the theory was sound enough, part of Bao-Wei is convinced that he was only ever so close to getting a breakthrough with his own formula.

The flashes did little to assuaged him in any capacity.

Since that day, Doctor Cong has been an unstoppable machine, when it came to finding more work to do- and faster. Whatever it was that he saw during his own, it has caused him to push onward tenfold, and that much is clear. Perhaps he simply did not like it, perhaps it was not exactly to his tastes, or perhaps he was one of the few to have either seen nothing at all.

When Bao-Wei finally gets to the lab, he makes little effort to be subtle; the door might have flown off of its hinges if it were not tall and made of metal. His abruptness is not lost on himself, and he clears his throat. Too late, she saw how excited that this has caused him to be. This is likely exactly what she needed to do- at least, in terms of making sure he will willingly work with her. As he approaches the two, he regards Bella with a halfway suspicious glance, before allowing a pause to take stock of her apparent study.

"I know you." He speaks at a simmering tone, tilting his own clipboard's corner at the younger man before turning his attention to Bella, as if he had not even recognized Jack at all. The eyes behind his glasses are nearly on fire. "I suppose you are quite proud of yourself. Let us see how well you've done."

Pathologizing an aggressor leaves room for pity, an emotion Bella deals with much better than resentment or frustration. Rather than give in to an urge to send back a salvo of her own (a hopeless and self defeating gesture should she give into to), she contents herself in imagining the daily pain a man such as Bao-Wei Cong must endure, battling the strictures of his own psyche. Yes. That's much better.

She doesn't smile. She gives Dr. Cong a small bow and offers the binder to him. "Details are inside," she says, "But the practical demonstration is the real proof. This subject has entirely lost his ability after being the subject of an Evolved whose own ability seemed to lie in the 'theft' of other abilities. After a series of tests, replicated so as to weed out errors within standard deviation, I discovered that the subject's SLC was intact, but that its proper functioning was blocked by what I tentatively hypothesize was the residue of whatever process copied his ability for transfer to the thief."

Bella continues, her voice measured and her enunciation clear. "By using a splice of the H5n10 virus, tailored to subject, I used system immunosuppressants and an oral viral application to safely infect the subject. The virus performed as expected, using the amino 'junk' that was blocking the SLC's functioning as fuel for its own replication. As the virus progressed, more and more of the subject's ability returned, until his full previous potential was reached. After this I wiped out the virus using full spectrum anti-biotics. He is currently still on said antibiotics, but I predict a full recovery within, at most, a week."

Dr. Sheridan clasps her clipboard before her in both hands, nodding to Mortimer, "Please… if you would demonstrate."

"You're the Doctor from the clinic Jack visited." Alex notes, flexing the newly refurbished hand of his bronze arm. He plans to make a new one, but for now, a functioning arm is better than nothing. The silvery color floods into his eyes like a flooding liquid, then he proceeds to meticulously construct something bit by bit. After a while it begins to resemble some sort of metallic wheel construct, with a great deal of wires, gears, and other small parts stuffed into it. At around the size of a hockey puck, he slips a rubbery object like a tire around it, then starts to wind it up like a clock.

"You know, I remember looking at wind up toys a lot. There's a great deal of wasted energy that goes into the winder mechanism. But do you know how truly powerful those things are when properly utilized?" He releases it suddenly, and the knob starts to turn with a slight buzzing. That's when Alex ducks under the table and the wheel starts spinning around, some of those metallic parts he stuck into it completely ripping through what was supposed to be a tire, and it's rolling all around the table at a high speed, like some sort of buzz saw, getting dangerously close to just flying off and ripping through someone completely.

"I'm sorry, Doctor, but those urges…"

Doctor Cong takes the files wordlessly, listening carefully to Bella's lengthy explanation. He keeps half an eye on Alex, however, out of need. He does not have much time between Bella's appeasing and the man's invention at the table going awry; question after question comes to mind, yes, however there is now a whirling buzzsaw threatening to leap from the table.

Bao-Wei may not be the most svelte person, though there is something to be said about his reaction time. He still has the clipboard and files in his hands when the saw takes off and shreds itself up, flinging bits around wildly. When it is clear that the machination is not what it should have been, Cong skips shielding himself from it and gives a powerful swing at it with the broadside of his clipboard.

Bella will be content with sidestepping behind a tall-backed conference chair and hoping for the best. Bao's more proactive approach sends the rogue mechanism caterwauling off into a corner of the room, where it grinds into wall and carpet, sending splinters and pits of torn carpeting up in a gritty plume. When the machine finally works itself out, Bella steps back out into clear view.

"Original profiling suggests that the subject's mental instability was a result of a pre-existing condition and essentially unconnected to the treatment," Bella says, trying to appear composed despite the fact some carpet fluff is still floating through the air, "Wouldn't you agree, Alex?"

Alex sits back up, taking his seat once more as his eyes gradually return to normal. "The more I use my ability, the more I can feel my mind growing unstable. And I constantly have Mortimer and Jack trying to claw out. It's all a lot to handle." He leans over and holds his forehead, sighing lightly. "I need that medication."

They will have to take that clockwork saw apart later; for now, Bao-Wei settles his gaze back onto Alex. "So, medicate him. I've seen what I need to see. Luckily, I knew of the nature of his missing ability- he came to me to fix his hand." Obviously, he could not do such a thing, but recalls faintly a conversation to do with the fact 'he would if he (still) could'. "Medicate him before he puts together some sort of flame-throwing golem."

Now that would be something to see. And something the government would pay for. Bella inclines in another small bow. "Now that we have your confirmation, Dr. Cong, I will be glad to see the subject medicated. I wished for you to see his ability as restored without interference. Please, peruse my file at your leisure. I'm sure you will be able to build on the simple foundation I've constructed here. I very much look forward to your insights." And now she smiles. Deference, fine. She'll show him deference. If that's what it takes.

"If you don't mind, I'd like to eat now." Alex requests, continuing to hold his head as he looks a bit exhausted. It's been a long few days, and he's still adjusting to having his ability back.

"Please, stop." Cong replies, one brow lifted at her technically creeping niceties. "Modesty is one thing, smearing yourself with false humbleness is another. You do not need to pretend you have manners." He tucks the files under his elbow, looking askance to Mortimer. "You had a stroke of genius, you had best be proud of it. I will assume that he will do fine, remaining in your care? Any developments in his condition must be reported."

No winning. So be it. Bella retains her smile, appearing unfazed outwardly. Within she imagines (what she assumes must be) the serpentine coils of Dr. Cong's pathologies. It comforts her as she nods. "He will remain under observation during his recovery period."

"But I foresee no serious complications."

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