St. Luke Blues


felix_icon.gif judah_icon.gif

Scene Title St. Luke Blues
Synopsis Judah stops by St. Luke's to visit a very drugged up Felix.
Date October 12, 2008

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.

Fel's been out of it….the backup and the following ambulance arrived in time, but it was a near thing, nonetheless. He's only just now out of the ICU and near something like real consciousness, though he's still on heavy duty painkillers. He's in a room of his own, rather than on some common ward, with windows that face east and let the morning sunlight stream in. At the moment, he's gazing rather muzzily out of them, face turned to one side, glasses on the bedside table.

There's a short knock at the door — the sound of knuckles rapping against the glass that allows the nurses attending to Felix to glance in on him whenever they pass his room on their way down the hall. A moment later, the familiar shape of Judah Demsky appears in the doorway, his large body draped in what looks like a rain-slicked greatcoat. "Ivanov?" he tries gently, his voice soft, tentative. Just by looking at him, he can't be sure if the other man is awake, asleep, or somewhere in between. "Ivanov?"

The agent's usually a jumpy little bastard, really….a bundle of nerves. It's a measure of the sheer weight of drugs he's struggling against that it takes a few heartbeats for him to swing his gaze over to the door and peer blearily at the detective. "Demsky," he says, struggling to sit up, which only makes all the monitoring equipment hooked up to him squeal in protest. "Come in."

Judah shuts the door behind him and crosses the room as quietly as he can, sloughing off droplets of water from his clothes and the umbrella he carries under his arm. He takes a seat in one of the empty chairs at Felix's bedside, silent as he appraises his condition, expression grim. "They said you might not be awake," he murmurs by way of greeting, "but I wanted to check, just to be sure."

Fel looks like hell. He's never had any flesh to spare, and now he's gaunt, bones of his face stark under the skin. He's also pale, despite the transfusions, and clearly weak. "How's Damaris?" he asks, bluntly, blue gaze searching the other cop's face. Not that he doesn't already suspect the answer….it's been nothing but evasions, in the few waking periods he's had since then.

"Alive," is the answer Felix receives. It's succinct, but Judah usually is. "The men who attacked you are holding her at an undisclosed location and have threatened to kill her unless we stop pursuing the Marshall case." Judah reaches up and runs his hand down his face, exhaling slowly and painfully through his nostrils. Being the bearer of bad news is never easy. It borders on the impossible when involves people you're close to. "I talked it over with Lau — we agreed that we can't afford to halt the investigation as long as the body count keeps rising."

Not the answer he was expecting. Better, in fact, if very strange. The Russian relaxes fractionally, licking dry lips, as his fingers knot themselves in the white cotton of the bedspread. "That…has to be the weirdest request I've ever heard of in a hostage case," he says, letting his eyes close for a few heartbeats. "I….what contact has there been with her captors? Have they identified themselves? I can tell you know, one of them was the oddest Evolved I've ever encountered. He let me live," he says. It's almost non sequitur, the way he forces the words out…as if he can barely keep the information coming in a linear manner.

"Whoever they are, they want to keep things quiet. So far, we've been fending the media off by tossing them scraps related to Civella's arrest and impending trial but it's only a matter of time until they catch wind of the fact Damaris is MIA." Judah frowns slightly, the worry-lines on his face becoming more prominent in the light. "What can you tell me about him?" he asks. "Was it Santiago? Did you get a good look?"

"I….did and I didn't. He has some sort of weird entropic effect, so I don't know how much of what I saw is accurate. I saw his henchman up close and pretty personal, the fucker," Felix says, with real venom in his voice, for all that his expression remains cool and clinical. "But it looked like him. Or what Santiago could look like, after all this time," He's still gripping the blanket like it's a lifeline, white-knuckled, apparently oblivious. "They really think they can call us off like that? Think we can cheat - sic the Bureau on 'em, even while you appear to pause the NYPD investigation?"

"You can run it past Lau," Judah suggests, "she's not about to have any of it, though. You know how it is. No negotiating with the terrorists — I told her she could go sit on a pike." The detective swallows hard, pausing to reign in his anger before it can take hold of his voice and make him say something he'll later regret. It wouldn’t be the first time today. "She’s switching me out with some kid. McNamara, I think. Good head on his shoulders."

"Kidnapping is our thing," Fel says, with mock demureness. "But she'd tear me a new one if we roast-beefed her over this. But you know, fuck 'er. I'm not NYPD, and there's a very good police in enemy hands. McNamara. Not someone I know. Not that I imagine they'll let me at anything more fearsome than a desk for the next little while," he says, finally giving up that deathgrip on the bedlinen, and dropping his gaze.

Judah lets out a low chuckle that's as caustic as it is hoarse. "You'll live," he promises Felix, "and you’ll be back out in the field just as soon as the staff here gives you a bill of clean health. Hurts like a son of a bitch, I know, but it feels worse than it is."

Felix rubs his eyes with the heel of one palm. "I've had worse," he says. And it's matter of fact, rather than bravado. "I wonder what these bastards ultimately hope to accomplish."

"I'll let you know when I get back from bailing Damaris out." On this note, Judah rises from his seat and slips his hands back into the pockets of his coat. "But on the off-chance I don't? I need you to do something for me."

That has Fel's brow's drawing down. "You are not about to saddle up your white horse and go charging off and getting yourself killed, right? Swear you'll wait for me," he says, fiercely. "But what?"

"Who rides white horses anymore?" Judah asks, raising both his dark eyebrows at Felix. "Mine's a nice shade of gunmetal gray and goes from zero to sixty in three-point-nine-four seconds." No glib comment about not getting himself killed, however — he knows the risks that are attached to the mission he wants to undertake. "There's this kid that’s been staying with me for a couple of weeks," he says. "Colette Nichols, lost all the family she had in the bomb. You think you could pull some strings and see if you can't find her a good set of foster parents here in the city? I've been having shit luck."

The Fed continues to glare at Judah. "Let me help, before you go off on some damn fool idealistic crusade," he insists, dropping his voice as if he feared some sort of surveillance. "I don't want two good police dead." He considers the request though. "Honestly, you've been around here more than I….if you're not having any luck, I'm not likely to. She can stay with me if she needs to - I've got more than enough room. How old’re we talking?"

"What are you going to do, Ivanov? Spit Vicodin at them? Bash them over their heads with your crutch?" Judah gives Felix a flat look. "Sixteen. Seventeen at the end of the month. She needs people she can fall back on in another year when she hits majority, people who will be there for her for the rest of their lives."

Felix's lips thin out at that. "The tricks still work, and he didn't take my gun hand off. From the sound of things, you intend to do this vigilante style," he says, disapprovingly. He ponders Colette. "That I can handle. Beyond the age where you need to wipe their nose or change their diapers, after all. Not like I got kids of my own. I mean, I'll look for a family, but man, you know how foster care is in this state, these days."

Judah nods in agreement with Felix's assessment of the foster care system. As for his damn fool crusade? "That depends entirely on your definition of 'vigilante style'. I don't plan on doing anything overtly illegal, if that’s what you’re implying. If I cant figure out where they’re keeping her, Ill wait until you trade in your hospital gown for a new suit, but if I get a lead before then — I’m taking it. You'd do the same if you were in my position."

Felix doesn't bother to deny it. Why lie? He nods approval. "I'll be out of here in a day or two," he says, simply. "I don't know that the blonde who stabbed me was anything funny. But Santiago….definitely is. A degenerator, maybe."

"Makes sense, given the state that the victims were in when we found them." Judah heads for the door, his chin brushing his shoulder as he glances back at Felix, carefully maintaining eye contact with the other man until his fingers are curled around the door handle. It's an old habit, drilled into his head when he was still small, though he sometimes has to remind himself to look at other people when he's talking to them. "I'll pull some strings back at the precinct and ask if Homeland Security can lend us some of their records. If there are others like Santiago, it might be useful to see what's already been documented about them."

Oh, HomeSec. Everyone's favorite local Gestapo. But Fel's worked with them before, and thus the only overt sign of his displeasure is how his gaze goes flat for a little. "Good," he says, quietly. "Very good. Just let me know. And don't get yourself killed, Demsky."

The expression Judah wears on his mouth comes close to a smile but, as usual, isn't quite. Its meaning, however, is clear: No promises. "Worry about your own ass," he says on his way out the door, "you're not out of the woods yet. Next time a nurse comes in to check your charts, ask her what a nosocomial infection is."

"Hey. This time I did -not- wake up to find a priest giving me last rites, so I'm doing better than before," Fel points out, with that familiar arch of a brow. But he nods, and sinks back against the pillows, wearied by even that little exchange.

The door clicks shut behind Judah, leaving Felix alone once again. At least the rain pattering against the window panes makes for less taxing company.

October 12: Big Rumble in Little Harlem

Previously in this storyline…
Matthew 21:22

Next in this storyline…

October 12th: Puzzles and Pretty Girls
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