2020-04-04 - Rise of the Guardgirl


Doctor's Kelsey and Almer meet at Mt Sinai Cravis Children's hospital - both drawn to the aid of young Kelli Lindstrom.

Log Info:

Storyteller: hank-mccoy
Date: Sat Apr 4 01:23:23 2020
Location: Mt Sinai Kravis - Room 11-38

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Theme Song



Somehow, past all the security, past the possible guard at the door, there's a stranger in Kelli's room. Not that he's a stranger to the staff here considering he's worked for the hospital at some point in the past, Martin sits on a chair at the side of the bed. He's reading a book to Kelli, something along her age level, and making different voices for her too. Might even have her smiling a little by this point. The man is wearing pretty normal casual clothing in way of a light jacket, old tshirt, and jeans. There will be something strange for the little girl though. Somehow, between one day and the next, many of her small injuries are gone. Bruises bare ghosts of green on skin, scrapes barely noticeable, etc. Like she's had weeks of healing in just a few hours. The arm is still missing, if because Martin can't heal that subtly, so that wasn't attempted. (Not that he could have restored it in hours to begin with anyway.)

Kelli is sitting up, and she definitely looks a little better, though she's not really smiling…she /is/ engaged by the man with the blue eyed, red head in the room as he reads her the story. In fact her condition is markedly improved, impossibly so in the time she's been at the hospital.

That there's a stranger in the room might be concerning to Roni when she arrives, though the girl is calm, and the staff didn't seem on edge at all. So that's something.

Her attending physician had already done his morning rounds, and there's notations about the remarkable improvement. In fact the attending has ordered a genetic screening to see if the girl is a mutant.

That order by the attending is removed from the chart the moment Veronica sees it; it is no longer the law of the land, and she will NOT tolerate that kind of prejudice under any circumstance. When or if young Kelli wishes to find out if she might be a mutant, or she has committed a crime and is to be placed in the care of corrections officials who must know her potentially powered status to make arrangements, she may be tested. Not until then while Dr. Veronica Kelsey has anything to say about it.

Noticing someone else in the room does not alarm Roni, however; she may have privileges here, and Kelli may be her patient, but she is not doing all of the work on the girl's case. But when she notices through the door's window that he is sitting and reading to her, that does concern her: the girl has only one relative, only one viable visitor she is aware of, and that man is supposed to be in prison for drug offenses. Whom could this be? Could he have gotten out?! But it serves her not at all to roll in and accuse anyone; there could be many explanations, and it is better to hear them than to start with yelling.

Even so, Veronica's hand is on her tablet, which has been set to her 'panic' button arrangement; a mere touch of that screen with her thumb - no other finger will do - will alert Posse directly, and REACT command and control, and they will dispatch her security detail in short order.

The door opens, then, quietly as the doctor manages to get it pushed aside with a tool she keeps on the chair for just such occasions, and then she rolls inside quietly and calmly, not wanting to disturb the tableau unfolding here.

Martin looks up for the door opening, but he manages to finish the reading of his sentence before truly responding. "Looks like there's someone here to see you." Given to Kelli as he closes the book. No, he doesn't know who Vertonica is, only that the woman is likely medical, or official in some manner. "Hey." Said warmly to Veronica as he rises to his feet, putting the book aside. "I'm Dr Almer. Heard about her through the press and just wanted to give her some company. I'll go if you need me to." Not that he's wearing any kind of ID for that, but he does have it on him.

Roni is wearing her white lab coat and her stethoscope, so it's not at all hard to guess she's medical staff. Her ID is also pretty clearly that of hospital-approved staff, though it does indicate she is a guest provider, not one exclusive to the hospital. "Good afternoon, Dr." Roni offers politely. Then she turns all of her attention to Kelli, rolling up bedside. "Hi there, Kelli. It's good to see you again." It has been two days since Roni has been here to visit, but she did tell Kelli she would be away and that she would return. She is here right now proving her word.

"I brought you something." Roni comments to Kelli as she reaches around behind her chair to fetch a box - a wrapped box, but arranged so that the wrapping wraps lid separately from box, so that once the ribbon is opened, the box will open easily since she is still doing it one-handed. So far. Veronica reaches up and puts the box in the little girl's lap, offering a warm smile. For the moment, all of her attention is for the girl she came to see; the girl who is alone in the world; the girl who is still struggling with all that has come upon her. Adults can talk in a bit, surely.

Kelli looks over when the door opens, and Roni is given a faint hint of smile. She briefly touches Martin's hand. "Thank you." For the story, and then suddenly - a GIFT! All alone, mauled, traumatized - all that, and more, and yet…still a six year old. She studies the box, the ribbon, and then looks to Roni. "But I didn't get anything for you."

After a moment, she looks to both adults, making sure it's okay, and then tugs at the ribbon, and opens the box to see what is inside.

"Glad to." Martin gives for the girl's thank you. He has been using his empathy with her, but keeping it along the lines of 'safe' and 'calm'. Just to assure that he isn't here for anything bad. As she looks his way, Martin smiles, "Don't need my permission, sweet heart." So yes, open the box! He watches a bit, but then will move around the bed to offer Roni his hand. "Where's she going after this?" Asked quietly in concern. "And I mean generals.. I don't need details." Looking back to Kelli as he asks. Not his place to know details.

Roni nods encouragingly at Kelli. "You don't need to get anything for me, Kelli. You just need to be you." No gift will ever make up for all the girl has lost; but Roni remembers what it was like to be a kid, and she had an idea - inspired by a friend - that she thought might be both enjoyed, and helpful. For now, she gives the little girl her undivided attention as she excitedly - as an emotionally muted six-year-old with one hand can - opens the box!

Inside is an eighteen-inch scale model action figure (doll) of a visibly woman of color, in full US Army Rangers military fatiques. But she is visibly not 'whole.' She has a metal left hand (and arm to go with it, should Kelli check under the jacket) and her fatigue pant leg is tucked up enough to reveal that the leg going into the left boot is similarly metal. There's also a difference in the left eye, and a bit of a scar bisecting her left eyebrow.

Yes. Veronica had a custom doll made for the girl, made as an exact replica of Sergeant Marie Ava Posey. There are weapons, backpack and other gear inside. But there are also additional outfits: Posse-doll can be dressed up in a wide array of attire, not all of which are explicitly real-Posse-approved. There's even - GASP - a dress! A business suit. A white labcoat. Lots of options. The doll is well-suited to be action figure or doll, whichever way best suits what Kelli wants regardless of anyone else's feelings or opinions.

And if this helps teach a six-year old girl to believe that in spite of what has happened to her, she can go anywhere, do anything, BE anything, so be it.

After watching Kelli discover and explore the toy for a bit, Roni turns and offers her hand to Martin. "Well, I am here expressly to work on one part of that. Kelli herself. The other part is being handled by Children and Family Services, although I have it on excellent authority that they are reviewing a handful of newly-added foster care family applications." Every one of those being a RESCUE employee and family, being supported by Roni and her company, with the intent that they can then adopt the girl and give her the stability and support she requires.

Kelli just gets very wide eyes at the contents of the box. "Oh! Is she a superhero?" And look, she's /Hispanic/, just like Kelli, well…Kelli is half Hispanic, but that still counts. Yes, the girl is definitely engaged, and the pair of doctors would be able to see her first smile since the accident, eyes alight as she finds the various outfits. There's nothing for it but to strip the Ava doll and check out the cyberlimbs, and how they move, and then see about the various outfits.

To the empath - yeah, she's actually a bit excited, and that awful ache inside her is a little better after his story, and better still with this gift from the reserved but definitely very dedicated young woman in the wheel chair.

Knowing well what it means to lose everyone, and be a ward of the state, Martin smiles widely as that box is opened. That ache will likely never go away. "That's cool." That sure is! A custom piece like that? Oh yeah! After that a nod to Roni, "I hope she gets someone good." Murmured of those newly selected options. To Kelli he asks, "Are you going to give her a name? Does she have one already?" Could be a card in the box. He sure doesn't know. And he's torn about what to do. Might have to hunt the girl down and see if he can sneak help her. Not that a foster child is easy to get to like that.

"She is modeled after a friend of mine. A friend I hope you will meet, sometime soon." Veronica answers Kelli. "But this is yours; you can name her whatever you wish. I promise: when you meet my friend, I will introduce you, and you will know her on sight." Indeed, the doll is incredibly distinctive, but also an incredibly accurate recreation of Posse, right down to her tattoos on her back, chest, and remaining bio-arm and hip. Roni doesn't say to Kelli that she gave her this to show her that even someone like her can do anything she wants, be anything she wants; but to an adult the message hidden here is clear.

"I hope that, too." Veronica admits to Martin. "That is why I made a point of telling Kelli's story to those I work with, and supporting those that wanted to pursue this option." Yes. Veronica recruited those willing to try to be a family for this girl.

And now that Kelli is fully engrossed, Roni turns her chair to regard Martin more carefully. "Dr. Almer, I am Doctor Veronica Kelsey. I am also the founder and co-CEO of RESCUE. And I am on Kelli's case because I heard about her from those who found and rescued her after the attack. And I came to offer my help and expertise." She banishes the panic button app from her tablet, and instead brings up the diagrams showing the highly advanced, very lifelike artificial arm prosthesis she has custom-designed for Kelli. She offers the tablet to Martin to look over.

The man brightens some for that. A foundation is involved? There's a nod for it, "That warms my heart. Glad she's got some interest behind her." The man means that too. Martin accepts that tablet and his brows just about meet his hairline. "Woah." No, that's not what he expected. There's a glance at the doll Kelli is playing with. Yeah, so getting why that was gifted. "That's way beyond my pay grade, but color me all shades of impressed." And kind of negates his needing to hunt her down. Hmm. "Hey, if you need a surgeon willing to donate time, look me up. I can't say I've done anything like this, but I sure could help." Will offer the tablet back.

"I'm going to call her…Guardgirl." Because she's /clearly/ a heroine, and a protector. She then very seriously sets about getting her armored up and kitted out for guard duty. She looks to Roni then. "I want to meet your friend, is she just like the doll?"

"She is very like the doll, Kelli. And I look forward to introducing the two of you." Veronica smiles neutrally to Martin. "Actually, I am a surgeon. Neurosurgery is my specialty. But the calling of RESCUE is to develop technologies to help others overcome their problems. Like my chair." She doesn't mention that her transforms into an exoframe that allows her to walk. But it would not be hard to find out, if one asks around or does any web research. "Nevertheless, if you have a mind to scrub in, I would welcome another pair of hands that can be trusted. Might I have your full name, Doctor?" Because Roni will be doing research, definitely.

There's a warm laugh for Guardgirl, "That's perfect." Martin grins at Kelli. Sure, not what he would have named her, but not his doll. Nor is he six. Then back to Roni. He nods and digs about his jacket pocket to find a business card holder. Offers the good doctor one. "Dr. Martin Almer." Which he had given at the beginning. "I'm a trauma surgeon at Lincoln Medical Center in the Bronx. Heard about Kelli here and just came by so she wasn't alone for a bit. I didn't know her before this." Now, he does have a bit of a reputation for making trouble with his superiors. Talks before he thinks and that kind of thing, but the man also has an incredible record for saving lives. Frankly it might appear faked because it's rather too good. He's not a known mutant though.

"I think my friend would love 'Guardgirl', Kelli." Veronica offers encouragingly. She accepts Martin's card long enough to scan it with the tablet, then tucks it away. Will she do a bioscan later to lift latent DNA? Would she do that? "When we are preparing for the surgery, I will give you a call to make sure you can be free to assist." Assuming he checks out, anyway. Then Veronica reaches into a pocket on the chair and pulls out a smartphone, which she taps to bring up a smartcode, which she offers towards Martin to be scanned; that's her business card, and no paper wasted. "If you're ever looking for further opportunities to help those in need, maybe check out RESCUE and REACT. It's what we're all about. But no pressure."

Martin finds his phone, for all the jacket certainly isn't that large, and totally accepts that code. He does have a smart phone, just a little old fashioned in some ways. "Sure, I'm always up for helping." Especially considering he might be out of a job soon. That foot in mouth disease he has. Toys around on his phone to save the contact how he likes them, and that's all good. "Thanks. That's some real impressive tech you have there. It'll change Kelli's life around in no time." And honestly that's awesome.

A faint sigh, and slump of Kelli's shoulders. "I'm getting sleepy." She complains. Clearly, she'd MUCH rather play with guard girl than sleep though. Carefully, she sets the box on her tray table, and then on the heart monitor next to her bed she sets up Guardgirl with weapons hot and actually a fairly good vantage point for the room. She looks to Veronica and offers her hand. "Thank you, Doctor Roni." And then she does the same, after a mighty yawn, for Martin. "Thank you, Doctor Martin."

She snuggles down into the covers then, and fights to stay awake!

It is going to be a losing battle however.

Veronica nods, smiling. "That is the intention. Just like the tech I used on my friend. And on myself." She doesn't demonstrate, but it shouldn't be hard for someone who spends their life around hospitals to spot that wheelchair is something special, something custom. Not just a private ownership. "Why don't we join Kelli?" she murmurs.

Then Veronica turns her chair and rolls back beside Kelli, observing Guard Girl fully kitted out, ready to watch and protect. "You're looking much better, Kelli. Feeling less owwie?" Roni asks, using a six-year-old's words, something she concentrates on to help relate to the girl and put her at ease. "I am sure Guard Girl will watch over you and keep you safe. Then you two can play more, after a nap. Remember? Have to let yourself sleep, to get better like you have been. You are very welcome."

For just a moment, Roni reaches out to brush the girl's dark hair. Then she sits back and watches her struggle until sleep claims her.

Martin smiles and nods, having noticed that indeed, but it's rude to point things out sometimes. "Good idea." For joining Kelli. "Then you should sleep, kiddo." Martin gives as he starts gathering up the box, and doing a search for wayward accessories so they aren't lost. Once the box is set aside he'll tuck Kelli in, making sure the cables are not hindered. Yeah, he's got a lot of experience on that. "She's such a well mannered little girl." Given once Kelli has failed to stay awake. "She's going to be a joy for whoever takes her in." He'll leave her, and move around to the side of the bed Roni is on and offer his hand again. "I'll look things over and am sure to give you a call about RESCUE. I can't build amazing things like you, but I'm not half bad at piecing people back together." Given with a grin.

Veronica accepts the hand and shakes again. "Take care, Doctor. I will look forward to hearing from you." From him. About him. Whatever may come.

Martin is a normal citizen more or less, so you will have no trouble finding out everything about him. And in fact he's a really boring normal citizen too. Works way too much and stays out of trouble. "Have a good night. Don't spoil her too bad." With a friendly nod, the man takes himself away.

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