Right vs. Best


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Scene Title Right vs. Best
Synopsis Melissa and Ryans work to recover Malcolm, and Francois helps to make it worth it.
Date February 20, 2011

Queens: Abandoned Building

The Dome is down and Malcolm has been shot. It gives the whole thing sort of a bittersweet feel to it, but that's not something that Melissa has much of a chance to really consider. While most of the people who were around have gone off to deal with the things that must be dealt with, including just getting the hell out of Queens and to someplace 'new', Melissa and Ryans have taken Malcolm, trying to save his life.

A vehicle was found, with Ryans at the wheel and Melissa in back, doing what she could to keep Malcolm alive. Ryans phone was borrowed, held awkwardly between ear and shoulder while she worked, making a call to her favoritest doctor, Francois, asking him to meet them at one of the many abandoned buildings in Queens, one well away from the auto shop where the Institute found them. It's not perfect, but hopefully it will work.

Once arriving at said building, Malcolm was carefully, but quickly, carried inside, laid down on a counter. "If Humanis First hadn't taken all my stuff I could do more," she mutters to Ryans, while trying to keep Malcolm from bleeding to death before the frenchman can arrive. "Don't suppose you have any first aid training? Battlefield medic or something?" she asks, glancing up at Ryans.

"My specialty is guns, explosives… everything that deals with killing someone not keeping them alive." Benjamin Ryans didn't relax even an inch until they were well outside where the military would be taking over and being some order to the chaos that the dome created. While he's still tense, he at least has a more relaxed posture about him.

But then the man practically exudes calm on the outside.

Hands press on the counter, body hunched a little, Ryans studies the man laying prone, worried about the fact his skin seems a little pale. "We get him stable, the Ferrymen can get him underground and protect his scrawny well-meaning… carcass." Blue eyes move from Malcolm to Melissa, studying her from under the brim of his fedora. "The eight didn't take that ability away from them completely."

Consciousness arrives in fleeting moments of lucidity until pain and blood loss both take Malcolm back under again — which might be just as well, in that prolonged black out can lead to brain damage, making the ruined joint of his shoulder the least of his worries. Pragmatic efforts can help, in the form of pressure, monitoring, scrap fabric — whatever is at Melissa's hands and her disposal to stem the red tide that threatens to take the Dome creator away as swiftly as the military might have done had they waited a minute longer.

Blood is everywhere. It soaks his clothing, his chest from neck to groin, his entire arm. Congeals in the scruff of his jaw where hands have accidentally smeared it to check his pulse. Shadows deep in his eye sockets. He's out, right now, jaw slack.

"Mine too. Well, not explosives, but the pain rather than the healing," Melissa says, nodding, pressing against the wound, eyeing Malcolm's face. "But you get hurt enough, you pick up a few things. Not enough though that I don't really hope that Francois gets here soon. This guy may have caused a lot of problems, but part of me can't blame him."

She looks back up to Ryans. "It's easy to understand being scared with all the shit going on lately. And he did voluntarily bring it down. Certainly doesn't deserve to die because of the Institute or Humanis First, whoever it was who fired that shot."

There is a short nod of his head. "Agreed." Ryan murmurs softly, straightening from the counter and moving cautiously to a window, to take a glance out. "I've dealt with my share of those that do stupid things, to try and protect others." He twist a little, to glance back the pain manipulator. "I may have worked for one of the most hated organizations, but I wasn't heartless. Met some good people doing things like he did."

Reaching up his pulls the fedora off his head, brushing fingers through hair in need of a good washing. He'll get headed for one of those as soon as possible, once he knows the guy will be okay. "Sometimes, the right thing, isn't always the best thing. We'll do out best to protect him." That last added as reassurance.

"Just proof that the whole isn't always equal to the sum of its parts," Melissa says, shrugging and looking back down to Malcolm, concern showing on her face. "And no, what's right isn't always best, or vice versa. Sometimes I wish I could put up a bubble around some people, like my daughter. Keep her safe. I think this guy has learned that that isn't always possible though. I just hope he lives long enough to realize that."

"You and I both," is rumbled from where Ryans stands guard at the window. "Both my girls… even my son, the stubborn boy he is." He's restless, maybe it's the fact that he's free and yet, it doesn't really feel like it. It won't till he can check on his children.

"Alas, they all are grown and keep reminding me of such." A small smile ticks at the corner of his mouth as he paces back to the table, a glance going to the doorway. "With hope this doctor friend of yours can help out…" Showing up at this point would be a plus.

"Mine's only ten months old. Not really mine, but she is," Melissa says, keeping part of her focus on Malcolm, not bothering to use her ability for now since he's unconscious. "And trust me, if Francois gets here in time, he'll be able to help. He's patched me and some friends up before. Really smart guy."

One who is trying to drive as fast as he can without attracting the law. Or the military.

In an effort of discreteness, the shiny black Lincoln is parked haphazard on broken curb, abandoned there in the hopes that it won't get subjected to rioters. Falling ice. Any number of small disasters that transpire in this city. It's left behind with a slamming door and a demure beep of locking mechanisms. If Francois were better with phones, he'd text ahead and let Melissa know that the sound of a car door was only him, don't worry, but as it stands she'll just have to find that out within the minute.

The cooler contains plasma. The backpack slung over a shoulder, less delicate things.

When he shoulders his way into the abandoned building, his mouth pulls at the low light of the place — which is why he brought a flashlight too, to simulate the brightness of the OR he hasn't been in in a long time now. He's reverted almost entirely back to his usual paleness since getting back into New York City, his hair a touch shaggier than Melissa remembers it to be. The stench of blood confirms first that he picked the right building sooner than he spies the three bodies towards the counter that traded liquor bottles and cigarettes over its top.

Not dying Englishmen. "Conscious?" he asks, hustling inside, all wools and denims. "When was the last time he was?" Hi, Melissa, it is nice to see you — are things they don't have time for right now.

The beep has the ex-agent hurrying to the window and shortly after, poised to one side of the door, with hand to the grip of his handgun. The man that hurries in has the air of a doctor about him, so Ryans relaxes some and moves to follow the Frenchman.

He keeps distance, pacing around behind them, so as not to get in the way. There is a furrowing of his brow, a touch of confusion suddenly. Ryans told her he's never heard of the man before, but there is recognition.

"Francois Allegre?" Ryans sounds almost stunned and like he doesn't believe it. He also feels like an idiot for not putting two and two together when Melissa first mentioned this doctor.

"Not at the moment, no. He surfaces now and again. One gunshot wound. Afraid it's not very clean. Lack of running water, and my first aid stuff got taken by Humanis First," Melissa says, shifting around to make room for Francois, but she doesn't move her hands, doesn't remove the pressure, until he's beside her.

Ryans has her glancing over. "Surprise, I guess. But like I said, he's good. If anyone can save Malcolm, he can." At least without leaving other types of damage behind in the wound's place.

People saying his whole name rarely portends anything good. It's enough for Francois' stride for Malcolm Pitt to slow for a moment, sharp glance to see if Ryans is just— you know— asking, or if recognition can be found in stoic, hawk features. There's none reflected back at Ryans, only an uncertain glance for Melissa, before it's back to business.

The things he puts down are heavy, finding a flat surface to set down the cooler and unzip the backpack. Rolls upon rolls of bandages. A kit with silver tools he's already sanitised. Morphine and percocet for recovery when Melissa can't monitor him forever. "I will do my best, but if he is saved, it will be because of the three of us. I need someone to hold this for me," he sets the flashlight aside, and then moving to take over for the woman and let whoever is spare handle the tools he needs. "The water, s'il vous plait.

"Who are you?" is to Ryans, politely phrased, a squint.

"Benjamin Ryans." He doesn't go on to explain his affiliations and where he stands within them. No need to at the moment. He's still struggling to make sense of whatever is going on in his head. Shouldn't he look older? Of course, so should Ryans.

The medical equipment the doctor carries with him, does tell Ryans one thing, something is missing. "Last time I saw you…" He trails off, mouth shutting firmly, lips pressed tight. "Sorry…" He shakes his head and dismisses the throught with a flick of his fingers. "It's not important at the moment." Instead, he moves to pick up the flashlight, with anticipation of being directed at where to point it. "Tell me what to do, and I'll do my best to help."

Since Ryans is getting the flashlight, Melissa is going for the water and offering it to Francois. "He's cool. Helped us with Humanis First." She doesn't mention the former Company thing, but right this moment, it's not really important. She hopes. She moves around to the other side of Malcolm, opposite Francois. Apparently prepared to play nurse to his doctor.

In the OR, it's a bit of a dance. This is a little different, but adequate enough.

There are other changes, but familiarities for Melissa. Healing powers gone, as well as a piece of his ear from a bite taken out of it and healed over again with shiny white scarring, and then another rippled line across the base of his throat — not the flawless evidence of a holy gift. "Pour it," he tells Melissa, nodding towards the wound, a glance to Ryans to indicate the same with the light. "A little." Pulling apart sopping fabric, cutting it away with the neat flicks of silver scissors, and Francois takes a breath inwards at the sight of the mangling.

"Sniper," he breathes out again, stress putting lines in his brow, but he lacks hesitation in trying to clean it of grit. He glances for Malcolm's hand, but it hasn't gone blue. Yet. "Who is this man, that someone wanted him dead so thoroughly?"

The light is positioned where directed, with Ryans watching without any emotions what's going on. "You are looking at the man that caused the dome." It's explained in a softly spoken tone. As if to speak to loud out break Francois' concentration. "So it doesn't surprise me that they wanted him dead."

Though, how they knew it was him is a mystery. "Taking him to people that can protect him." Ben studies the unconscious man, worried, but not showing it. "He did it to protect people from the robots that chanced him in Midtown."

Melissa nods, pouring the water over the gunshot, and nods again when the word sniper is used. "He's also the guy who brought the bubble down. And yeah, he was scared. Hell, he's still scared, but also regrets the trouble that his attempt to protect people caused." And with Francois here, she doesn't have to focus as much on Malcolm, and she can study Francois, frowning as she notes the new scars.

That does bring pause, Francois sharing a stare for Ryans and then to Melissa, jaw tense and hands still before— they automatically resume work, as if getting ahead of thought process. Muscle memory as he cleans the wound. "Melissa," he says — not to chastise. Only to make no mistake as to whom he is talking to, as the light holds steady. "In the dufflebag, there is adynomine, from the last time I was north. A couple of doses. Are you able to administer one of them?" The question isn't a question. It's a needle. There is only so much that can go wrong.

Well, a few things that can go wrong, but she's seen needles. "And bring me the suture kit. We will be here for a time. Once I close him up to the best of my ability, we can replenish him with the plasma before we think of moving him." In the pause between asking for what he needs and getting it, he gives Ryans' face another suspicious, if almost shyly so once over.

He doesn't question Francois' motives for the negation drug, in fact, Benjamin probably agrees with it. Last thing they didn't need was the guy coming to and popping a bubble and killing them… or worse, giving up their position. "Once we do, I'll put in a call."

He hasn't noticed the glance from the doctor, he's more focused on the patient. "Thank you." Ryans offers sincerely to Francois, finally glancing the other mans way. A man who should really be much older then Ryans… even if the ex-agent looked his age.

"Sure," Melissa says, nodding and moving towards the dufflebag, finding the drug in question and bringing it back to Malcolm. "Probably smart too. His bubbles, even the small ones, can cause a hell of a lot of damage," she mutters, uncapping the needle then administering the drug with a slightly furrowed brow. "Thanks for coming so quickly, by the way," she says, glancing up at Francois.

"De rien."

In the wake of the negation drug given, only then does Francois apply the sedative that might ensure that Malcolm does not wake up screaming at the feel of being stitched back together, with or without Melissa's power. Movement can only do harm. The flashlight will die out after maybe half an hour — it's been used before, and left to drain in the bottom of the closet, but they can wait why Ryans replaces the batteries. They'll need it, too, because they're only done by the time dusk is keeling over into night.

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