2019-07-30 - Charmed Visit


A visit to Charm in the hospital reaps unexpected results.

Log Info:

Storyteller: None
Date: Tue Jul 30 07:13:34 2019
Location: Hospital

Related Logs


Theme Song



It's been a couple of days since Charm was bought into the hospital. There hadn't been a delay when Gabrielle had bought the mutant in - in fact, Gabrielles arrival had created a bit of a stir. Charm though, had been in a condition that didn't brook question and she was taken straight in.

She's slowly recovering - the operation was extensive - and is currently laying in bed, asleep - the machines beeping and humming a not-so-quiet tattoo in the background. There's a least one visitor in the room, a dark skinned woman, Mari McCabe, sitting in a chair near the bed, tapping on her tablet and glancing occassionally at the mutant in the bed.

There had been the ever present question of how Charm was going to pay for all of the service she was getting. It hadn't been brought up directly but there'd been the usual inquiries about ID and insurance and all that.

Which is why it is possibly something of a second stir that Charm has a visitor today. A tall, well dressed man by the name of T'Challa. A prince. And a very wealthy man. Who has just informed the hospital that he will cover Charm's bill in full.

There's a knock at the door. "Ah hello Mari. I got your call on my messaging service. Sorry. I responded as quickly as I could."

Gabrielle Doe hasn't actually been in to visit. Well, not in the room anyhow. Too many people asking too many questions and for the most part there wasn't anything that Gabrielle could do. Once Charm was admitted, the blonde woman had headed back to the Zone to tell her family and since then she's stopped in, hovering outside the window to check up on the unconscious woman.

Since Gabrielle glows when she's flying, she's mostly kept her check-ins to daylight hours, early mornings and near twilight. But it's well into the evening now and Gabrielle tries to be as sneaky as a rainbow will-o-wisp can as she floats up to the windows, orange light spilling into the room and over Mari and T'Challa.

Mari looks up as T'Challa comes in. Charm hasn't moved and hasn't woken either - not since they bought her in. "T'Challa. Thank you." She rises, the faintest sound of relief colouring her tone, and holds out her hand. "I … The Black Panther…" The spill of orange light has the ex-model turning to the window. She doesn't remember there be any signage that should do that.

"Oh, Gabrielle … " she blinks as the woman hovers. "You could just use the door, you know." Do these windows even open? Often they're sealed because of airconditioning - then again, this isn't one of the bigger hospitals is it.

T'Challa opens his mouth to say more but at that moment he's bathed in orange light. He blinks and looks up and smiles slightly. "Well. Either an angel has arrived or Charm has a visitor." There's a slight pause as he goes over to the window to open it. "Heaven may be cutting back on the rations from what it seems like."

"Come inside. It's alright. And yes. The Black Panther. I know."

He looks back to the patient and then up to the two women.

"She will live, the doctors tell me. You found her in time. But she has some rather unusual… changes to her throat." He folds his arms and considers.

"There is something else I need to tell the both of you about what happened that night."

Even though she's outside the room, Gabrielle gives Mari a smile and an enthusiastic wave. She floats back a bit as T'Challa opens the window and then slips through like a swimmer might instead of crawling through like most people would. "Oh! Thank you! I didn't know these opened…" She doesn't quite touch down, floating a few inches above the floor as she looks at T'Challa with open interest. Finally, she sticks her hand out to him. "I'm Gabrielle." She's only met the Panther, after all.

The blonde grimaces a bit Mari's way. "City places don't really like folks from the Zone coming into their buildings." Well, the hospital would likely think she needed treatment if it weren't for the glowing, which also somewhat hides the shabby nature of her clothing. And the dirt. Hospitals aren't big on dirt.

Gabrielle looks back to T'Challa, brow furrowing. "Are you one of the doctors? What else happened?"

"I'll tell you what…" Mari murmurs as she offers her arm to help Gabrielle through the window. It should be big enough, if Gabrielle angles her body right. "… you come in now and I'll deal with the hospital fuddy duddy's. You'll just have to wash your hands in the sink, ok? I'll even leave the window unlatched so you can visit later." And deal with the nurses to make sure it doesn't get locked again.

When she realises about the clothing, that might get resolved as well.

"This is my friend, T'Challa of Wakanda. Do you remember the Black Panther mentioned him the night we bought your friend in?" Gabrielle might not, she'd been in a hurry after all.

"What happened that night?" That draws a questioning look from the ex-model. "You are indeed a man of mystery."

"I am T'Challa of Wakanda as she says. Pleased to formally meet you, Gabrielle." The way she hovers, never quite touching the ground is interesting and definitely noted.

"And no, I am not one of the doctors. I am however a man very interested in what was done to your friend." And what was done is obvious. the center of her throat is silvery now. It's been replaced by machinery. It's not even clear how well it will work or if her voice will be the same. It is, by any measure, a monstrous violation of the woman to have done that. And the fact that more zonies are implicitly at risk makes it worse.

T'Challa glances out the door and then pushes it most of the way shut. "More mystery than you may realize, Mari. I need this to remain a secret but I know the Black Panther very, very well. He left me this."

The dark Prince places a small orb on a table and presses it. "After you left for the hospital, the Black Panther remained in the Zone looking for things that might be related to that lab. He did not find much. But what he did find…" The orb projects a picture of a colored streak of light flying through the sky. It looks like Gabrielle but as the image zooms closer, it isn't. The streak dips down and when it comes back up, it's got three people held in some kind of field, dragging them up and away at a terrifying rate.

"I know that was not you, Gabrielle. But it does explain why the stories about you are so conflicted, with some calling you a hero and others a demon."

Gabrielle Doe bobs her head at Mari's question about the Black Panther as she drifts over to the unconscious woman, about to take one of Charm's hands in hers when Mari's other comment reminds her. The orange-glowing woman zips over to the sink to wash her hands with an exceptional amount of care before coming back over to take the unconscious woman's hand while she listens.

The blonde woman's head turns at the mention of 'this', and she lets go of Charm's hand to drift closer as the orb projects a picture. Gabrielle leans in and blinks, mouth opening and about to say that's not her when T'Challa does it for her. Of course, Gabby was off with Mari getting Charm to the hospital. She bites her lower lip and looks between the two. "You think there's someone else? Like me?" Not that she particularly knows what she is. 'Mutant' is the easy guess in this city.

There's the faintest of smiles from Mari as Gabrielle remembers to wash her hands and so diligently as well. "You're a good friend, Gabrielle." She says quietly. It's lovely to see really, reminding Mari there's more to life than business and work.

"Is that so?" That's not the first time Mari's said that to T'Challa and there's a suitable amount of cheekiness associated with the tone. "You're secret is safe with me. You know who, again?" she asks with a wink. The smile that starts soon fades however as the footage plays.

"It's possible there's another like you, Gabrielle though I wonder at the coincidence. It's possible, I think, that someone has seen you and is trying to imitate you. Throw people on your scent and away from them. You … well, you're a little more visible aren't you?"

"I would ask if you have ever encountered another like you but I think you possibly would have mentioned if you had." The Wakandan prince says. "But yes. It does appear that there is someone else like you. And given the manner in which those people were taken I think it is safe to say that it was not voluntary. It COULD be a coincidence, but that might explain how people just go 'missing' in the night. Especially if they know you, Gabrielle. They would not be alarmed at the approach of a streak of colored light."

That… makes some sense. And is slightly terrifying. T'Challa knows though he can't let on that he's seen Gabrielle take on a Sentinel. A wrecked one granted but still. Mari, however, CAN let that on.

"That is probably a situation that should not be allowed to persist very long. The Panther asked me to relay that he is willing to help look for this other… being. Whatever it is." Mutant? Ghost? Good question.

"Though he also asked me to remind you both that he cannot fly."

Gabrielle Doe looks… crushed. "People might be getting kidnapped… because they trust me?" That's just such a betrayal. "That's terrible! I need to let people know." Because she'd rather people shy away from her then put themselves in danger.

At the mention of the offered help, Gabrielle bobs her head up and down in an enthusiastic nod. "We need to keep any more people from getting taken and… experimented on." She looks back to Charm with worry.

That the Panther can't fly gets a small smile from the worried blonde. "Oh, that's OK." She points a fist over at T'Challa as her aura shifts from orange to purple and 'reaches' out, enveloping the Wakandan prince and lifting him off the ground. "I can carry him." Pause. "Unless he's a *lot* heavier than he looks."

"Are you sure he can't? He seems so … accomplished…" Mari is dry as she comments on that, smirking as the blonde's aura shifts and she 'raises' the Wakandan prince up. "Guess she's picking you up, T'Challa."

"Gabrielle faced the Sentinel part I was telling you about. She's handy in a fight with all those colours." Mari's noticed, of course she would. "How far could carry a person, Gabrielle?" Mari has, once or twice, but it's a strain and not something she could do for more than few minutes.

T'Challa looks genuinely shocked when he's surrounded by the field of light that renders him… well not weightless but that's what it feels like from his perspective. Bast only knows what it feels like from hers.

"I will admit that no one has actually picked me up since I was quite small." The mirth in his voice is hard to miss. "This is rather exhilarating, actually."

How would it be to actually zip about the sky carried in something like this? He can only imagine. Though perhaps one day he'll have occasion to find out.

"I do not think you will find him heavier than he looks. He seems to get along fine on delicate surfaces from what I am able to tell." Mari's 'revelation' about Gabrielle's prowess gets a quirk of a brow from the still suspended T'Challa.

"You fought a Sentinel? Well, I AM quite impressed. Not many could do that even at the peak of their health, let alone… possibly missing a few meals. You and your halos seem to have a LOT of potential indeed. And that's good. But also worrying…" Because there might be a second one out there with the same potential.

"Oh, that does remind me. I have something for your Gabrielle." Mari's question about how far - and possibly also how fast - the rainbow woman could carry someone IS of interest though. And more than just idle interest, not that they'll know that. He may need to design a glider.

Mari's dry tone gets a curious look from Gabrielle, but it seems like some sort of inside joke, so she doesn't ask. That moves into a grin as Gabrielle sweeps T'Challa about the room and then gently sets him down, the glow fading away entirely.

The blonde young woman ducks her head a bit as Mari mentions the Sentinel. "It was barely holding itself together, and Vixen and Black Panther were there too." She points out, only to turn thoughtful when Mari asks about how far Gabrielle could carry a person. "Until they wanted to be put down? Usually we get where we're going before it comes up. I can only use one color at a time, so if I wanted to do something else, I'd need to set people down."

Gabrielle's manner brightens, something that happens easily with her, when T'Challa seems to enjoy it. "I could take you flying sometime. When there's not like, a low ceiling…" She looks up at said ceiling.

When T'Challa say he has something for her gets a furrowed brow. "Something for me?"

"Barely holding itself together. It was still a Sentinel and designed to neutralise people like us. It was brave and very helpful, Gabrielle. Don't ever underestimate what they are and what you do."

"So you can carry the Black Panther as long and as far as needed but in a fight, you'll need to put him down. We can work with that." Aerial surveillance and a mode of transport is incredibly useful. Mari doesn't like fighting from the air generally anyway.

"Something for Gabrielle?"

"Yes." T'Challa is still surrounded by that red halo but at least it doesn't prevent him from reaching into a pocket and producing a few slim items. A phone, one of those solar charging batteries and some wireless headphones.

With the other hand he gets out HIS phone and taps it a few times. Mari gets a notification. Ah. The phone he has for Gabrielle… he's set it up to show her location and shared that with Mari. Handy, that. Being able to find her, that is. Or even call her. Saves having to go into the Disaster Zone at night and look for a colored streak of light.

"The Panther mentioned that you'd been singing. And that got me thinking. I suspect that you do not have anything that plays music. Or anything that people can call you on."

Mari gets a sly grin. "I suspect that at least one person here might like to call you from time to time. And I certainly would be happy to make your further acquaintance. I have business inside the Disaster Zone, as Mari knows."

King of the Dead and all that. He doesn't say it. She might.

"And flying sounds delightful, honestly. One of those things people dream of but few people can do."

Gabrielle Doe spreads her hands a bit, palms up. "I just help where I can. It's what people should do." And she knows a number that do. She's also familiar with some that don't, but it hasn't tarnished her outlook. Yet.

Since Gabrielle's turned off her aura, she's not floating anymore. So to go over and see what T'Challa's got she has to actually walk. She's learned that people don't always appreciate you putting on a lightshow during casual conversations.

At first, Gabrielle leans in, thinking that T'Challa's going to show her something on the phone. When he intimates that it's for her she blinks at him in surprise. "For me?" Phones are expensive! Not a lot of people in the Zone have them, unless they're up to no good. Then there's the cost for service. They're huge luxury items.

"Maybe it is, but I'm sure you know not everyone does." Mari murmurs. The ex-model steps back and lets T'Challa make his presentation, checking her phone when the tones sound. "T'Challa has many interests in the Zone, Gabrielle. Helping those there and … maybe with the spirits of the dead." That's all she can say on that for the moment.

"It's a good idea, Gabrielle. I'd like to be able to meet with you and help as I can." Also check on the young woman. "And now, if you need help, you can contact us or anyone else, if you like."

"For you. The battery will charge in the light and charge anything plugged into it. I've made sure it's not data capped so go ahead and do what you like with it. The ear phones, well… again the Panther mentioned that you'd been singing. He also said you had a rather nice voice though Mari will have to confirm that for me."

He winks at Mari, giving her a small eye roll when she mentions the spirits of the dead. She seems to enjoy telling people that. Perhaps it's because T'Challa wasn't entirely up front with her on that count.

Then again, can he really be blamed for that?

"Mari you'll find I've sent you the contact number for her and the, er, goggle maps share." Gabrielle may not get that. But she will find on looking at it that it has come pre loaded with some peppy, upbeat music and in addition it has both Mari and T'Challa's numbers already on the contacts list.

The lack of honestly rather bright light IS rather appreciated even if it does still have T'Challa blinking a bit to get used to the now much dimmer room.

"Mari, may I suggest at some point that the two of you speak about what her… needs might be if she's going to be helping?"

The Black Panther is highly trained and experienced. Mari is as well. Gabrielle? Well, she's an amnesiac with rainbow powers.

Gabrielle Doe gives Mari a sad sort of smile and nods, glancing over to where Charm lies unconscious. She does know all too well that not everyone does.

The bit about spirits of the dead gets T'Challa a curious look. "Like… ghosts? Those are real? I'm pretty sure people told me they weren't…" And she only has the word of those she trusts to go on, lacking much in the way of experience. Of *any* sort.

That she'll be able to contact them gets another of her bright smiles, dark and heavy thoughts not keeping her weighed down for long. "Oh! That'll be great! The Zone is pretty big and it's a bad idea to stay in one place too long… Now I can add Detective Grayson's number in there and check in to see if he found anything about who I am." She doesn't seem really invested in her missing memories. The phone seems *much* more fascinating as she pokes at the buttons.

"Detective Grayson?" Mari looks up at that. "That's Detective Gibb's partner. The one you met when you came in that day." She says to T'Challa. Grayson probably doesn't know her, Gibbs had been alone that day but had certainly mentioned his fellow Detective. "I wasn't so sure myself, Gabrielle, about the spirits but … yes, I rather think they are."

It's more that Mari enjoys teasing T'Challa. And yes, he hadn't told her. She'd had to find out. "I see that, T'Challa. Thank you." Mari waves her phone that she's been tapping at since the tones sounded. "I've got her in my favourites, now."

"You … don't know who you are?" That hadn't really been clear to Mari when they first met. It's not unusual for those in the Zone to be cagey about their background. Some just want to forget it, after all.

"And yes, tell me what you need. Some clean clothes, perhaps? Food? Anything else?"

"Oh she's a favorite of yours already is she?" T'Challa teases lightly. "Cannot say that I blame you. I do not believe I know a Detective Grayson, though." Gibbs he's met. A slightly slovenly man, really, but presumably effective at his job? The Wakandan prince doesn't really have a way to say but either way he makes no judgements.

Okay. He doesn't make MANY judgements.

"Mmmm? Ah yes. They are real enough." Raising his hand, T'Challa very briefly forms a ghostly spear in it, whirls it above his head and then lets it vanish.

"You… have amnesia then? How much do you remember, if anything?" That there is a detective looking into her DEFINTIELY has his attention. While it is unlikely to come back with anything horrible things DO happen. Grayson, hrm? Partner of Gibbs. He can work with that. Shouldn't be too hard to figure out where he is working. And if he finds anything of interest, well…

"Food, I should think, Mari. Gabrielle looks like she's missed a few meals. No offense, Gabrielle."

She is gaunt though. Beyond thin, she looks malnourished. Not STARVING, no, but somewhat sunken cheeks and eyes and a distinct lack of ANY kind of padding on her face or neck. Or presumably elsewhere bit her clothing makes it difficult to tell.

It DOES occur to him that if she's going to be flying about with the Vixen and the Black Panther she might want a proper heroing outfit. But he doesn't make that suggestion on her behalf. Not yet anyway.

The phone has a few games on it. T'Challa thought of that. And netflix, because why not. It was only a few dollars more and the morale value of that to both Gabrielle and her friends is potentially very significant. Again, he's aware that there are some problems one cannot simply throw money at.

Gabrielle Doe looks up from the phone. "I don't know a Detective Gibb. He was by himself, giving out stew." She gives another of those bright smiles that could make one forget that she's dirty and underfed. "With cheese! No one told me cheese was so yummy."

At the questions about her past, Gabrielle looks between them, almost apologetic. "Oh. No. Sorry. I don't remember anything before about six months ago. Some of my friends found me wandering the Zone. They figure I must have hit my head or something and that's why I can't remember anything." Which Gabrielle seems to have accepted easily enough.

Watching T'Challa summon the spear, she 'oooos' softly. "I can't do that." The mention of food gets a small shrug. "When we can find food, there are others that need it more than me. I get by."

"There's no need to be sorry." Mari smiles. Maybe that's a hint though, she could be Canadian! "Six months ago." That's unusual. Normally those in the Zone who can't remember have been then longer. "Would you mind if I spoke to Detective Grayson, Gabrielle? See if I might help him?" beat "And cheese is delicious. I'll be sure to get you some."

"Food for certain and some clothes. And some bedding - that's easy to move." The ex-model hasn't missed that Gabrielle said she moved around. "And some first aid supplies."

"You have my number in there, I believe, Gabrielle. If you think of anything else, you can call or message me."

"Few people can." The prince smiles as he dismisses the weapon and considers what he's been told.

"Hmmmmm. Interesting." T'Challa is educated enough to know that total amnesia is rare and USUALLY indicates problems with the short term memory, not the long term memory. People with it generally have problems retaining new information. She seems relatively normal so that does make him slightly dubious. He doubts she's lying. But there MIGHT be other explanations. And with those labs in the Disaster Zone, that's probably worth looking into.

"Mari and I are trying to establish places in the Disaster Zone that are safer and have better access to things like food and clean water. Is there anyone you might introduce us to? Any… leaders, for lack of a better word? Or perhaps you are one? I could well imagine people looking up to you."

He looks over to Mari. "I would say that the first priority would be to track down the other… light user, wouldn't you?"

Gabrielle Doe shakes her head at Mari's question. That it might be a problem for Mari talked to Grayson doesn't even occur to her.

She looks between the pair as they lay out things they're looking to do to help. Certainly it will help improve the quality of life for some of the Zonies, even if the larger problem persists. "I'm not a leader. I don't know enough. But I help! And I run messages for them. I know a lot of good people that have some good hideyholes. They make for reliable hubs." Gabrielle tends to draw more attention, so she doesn't stay in one place. Also, supplies tend to get picked clean where a group sets up, and it can't support very many. A lot of what Gabby does find, she gives to the families. She chooses to go without some meals.

The blonde's expression turns firm, and she nods her head. "Yeah. We need to stop whoever's taking people like that."

"Then I will." Mari will talk to Detective Grayson. Of course, they might come looking for Gabrielle to get her permission, directly. It's simply not done giving out information like that.

"I think you might be surprised by what others think you are, Gabrielle. People find inspiration in places we seldom think to look. But if you could introduce us to others, that would be helpful. We don't want to scare people away." And the Zonies have good reason to treat people like Mari and T'Challa with suspcion.

"That seems like a good first priority. And it I think it means late nights in the Zone. When can get a message to the Black Panther? I'm ready to start when he and you, Gabrielle, are."

"Sounds like some introductions are in order then. And I shall send him one as soon as I can. When would you like me to arrange the meeting? I suppose I could just send you a text when I get ahold of him."

Ah the joys of group texting. Gabrielle will discover those just as Mari and T'Challa have. Also the joys of the 'reply all' email. Because that thing has a google account. It's easier to use a lot of things if it does. So, you know, T'Challa took some initiative.

"Shall I let you spend some time with your friend, then? You and Mari can chat a bit perhaps. I'm going to go leave some instructions with the doctors about where the bills are to be sent."

And then, not that anyone knows it, he's going to put on a cat suit and go digging.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License