Amalric is hardly gleeful at the moment as he approaches the inn where Westen had so kindly put him up for a while, several days ago. He's been waiting for some kind of assignment for some time, but this is hardly what he expected. Find and care for a young, possibly badly injured dragon and keep him from interfering with another's test. Uh-huh.
I'm supposed to be exploring, he fumes to himself as he enters and heads up the stairs. ... yet they want me to play nursemaid. Why couldn't they have gotten one of the medics to do this? ... and why's he in MY room of all places? What's his name supposed to be... Nathaniel... what a name. Why's this guy so ...
... important... His thoughts freeze in place as he opens the door and sees the 'young dragon' laying on his bed, writhing in pain. The presence of Bahamut all but screams across his own kaiser's link, and before it even registers fully in his own true-sight, he finds himself running forward.
"Sir. Sir!! What has happened to you??" No need for him to follow the instructions to play dumb... the shock is enough.
Nate tries to respond between gasping breaths as his body forces itself to regen, which is almost totally beyond his control.
"... attacked... mag -- *gasp* magma dragon... in the ... in the mountains..." His wounds are already done bleeding, it seems, between those that were cauterized on contact and those his regen has been working on. Problem is, burn wounds don't regen worth junk... so that's about the best this new, oddly archaic-looking dragon is going to get out of Nate right now.
"A magma dragon -- in these parts? One who was crazy enough to attack you?? *You,* of all people??" Okay, get all dramatic, Amalric... deep breath... "We just settled this planet less than a full turn-season ago... We've counted all of our numbers that came here. How can this be?"
He does a cursory scan of Nate's wounds, but ... other than getting the cloth out of the wounds, which he does to prevent the regen from trying to assimilate it with Nate's flesh, there's not much he can do...
"Look... the healers are a half-day's journey away. I'm going down to get you some water and food that's easy to stomach... I promise, I'll be back!" ... and out the door he goes, not waiting for a response. Not that the poor guy looked in a condition to give much of one, but still...
Nate lays there for another ten minutes while That New Dragon is gone before the pain subsides enough for him to even gather a clear thought. He's gotta get out of here... he's gotta get back... somehow... he can't let her die... not again... *gasp* Ow!
Mental note... don't try to sit up... He takes as deep a breath as he can manage, then at least turns his head so he can have a look down... and he comes to the depressing realization that he's not going anywhere. Not for a few hours, anyway...
Amalric darts out of the room and shuts the door, making haste toward the stairs, but pausing at the landing. Best not cause a fuss... if this kid is that important, the last thing he needs is a big crowd around him.
With that realization, he forces himself to take the steps in a more casual manner, as if he was just coming down for breakfast. He grabs a glass of water and a bowl of some strange, warm, lumpy substance offered to him ("Oatmeal?"), then inquires at the nearest table with as even a voice as he can muster about where he might be able to find a "healer" in the area.
After fending off several odd looks and incinerating stares, punctured pointedly by the few people that he seemed to have started awake with his question, he comes quickly to accept the fact that healers are called "doctors" or "medics" around here, and after a minute or so of wrangling, the conversation starts to get somewhere. Another three minutes, and he's got what he thinks is the best set of directions he's going to get from this group. Hang these sleepy-eyed people complaining of headaches, sore eyes, and loud noises...
Armed with this information, he takes his food-goods back up to the room and sets them on the bedside table, surveying Nate one more time.
"Ah, good, you've relaxed a little... Listen. I'm going to find someone who might be able to help with your burns. If I'm gone for much longer than -- ... well, no, I don't suppose you could come find me... All right. I'll be back as soon as I can."
Without waiting for much more than a nod, he's out the door again.
Nate opens his mouth to say something to That New Dragon before he darts out the door again... but then he's gone, and Nate's left in the room to deal with the pain. He looks over at the water and the squished oats and his stomach rumbles -- though whether from hunger or from revulsion, he's not really sure. All he really knows is that he hurts... and that Bri isn't in the room with him.
He struggles to roll over against the pain, at least enough to get a drink of water. As he's struggling to get to the glass and lift it to his lips, he sends a quick inquiry to Bahamut -- and gets a rather tacit and perhaps too quick response that he has no idea where she is. Upon inquiring why, he informs Nate that her kaiser ... isn't in her body anymore...
Nate freezes with the glass on his lips, letting that information sink in. Her kaiser isn't in her body... ... so where did he go?
He waits, takes another sip, and waits longer... but Bahamut offers no response at all to that question.
Nate sets the glass down on the table and falls to his back, ignoring the pain.
Another twenty minutes, and Amalric still hasn't returned, leaving Nate with nothing to do but stare at the stuff he can only consider to be porridge -- and lumpy porridge, at that -- and think about what happened.
He fell down the rock-slide into the mountain... she rolled to a stop somewhere above him... he saw the dragon rise and take her... and glare at her... he got up and attacked the thing, and it tossed her aside... and then the lava-attack.
Lava attack. It absolutely *had* to be a magma dragon... but who opened the portal underneath him, then? Bahamut, knowing he might die...?
A quick negation from inside his head denies that possibility. So who, then? Not that new fellow, whatever his name is... could've at least told him that, if he expected Nate to find him anywhere. And he said the dragons were new to this planet...
... and where is Bri?? Is she trapped, did the dragon...
He stops that thought before it starts, closing his eyes against both it and the pain still coursing through his body. This can't be real... it's all just some funny dream, and I'll wake up... it's some new Simon trick...
... Nate doesn't wake up, though, and Amalric comes back about ten minutes later with a protesting 'paramedic,' as he calls himself. What's that supposed to be, a medic specializing in paranormal activity?
"... swear you could've just called for an ambulance, it'd be a lot easier than... ... thought you said he was retching in pain?"
Amalric and the paramedic come into the room to find Nate's glass half-empty, but the oatmeal hasn't been touched. The paramedic tromps over to the bed and begins looking Nate over, rather forcibly, one might add.
"Now, just lay back... yes, yes, you got the cloth out of the wounds, that's at least a start, though I'm surprised you didn't need to use it to stop any bleeding... yes... now, let's just stick a little something in there... goodness, they did mostly cauterize, didn't they..."
"Ow -- hey -- watch where you're poking!"
Nate wriggles and starts under the 'healer's' ministrations, doing his best not to make a lot of noise as he's being poked and prodded. Just cast a HEAL on him, already! He needs to get out and find ... Bri... if she's --
"OW!" His eyes widen as the young gentleman begins poking a stick with some weird gray goop into one of the open burns -- and it stings!!
"What are you DOING??"
The paramedic looks up with slightly narrow eyes, as if he's had to deal with this kind of reaction before. What, are all the people in this happy little inn new to this country, or something?
"Easy, bud. It's silver nitrate, it'll help keep the infection down and start with healing you up. Though it looks like you guys waited more than a little while to come to us..." He surveys the burns again, noting that not only has the bleeding stopped... but there are intact vessels underneath. Good grief... but he's not gonna ask questions, instead looking to Amalric and working as if on auto-pilot on Nate.
"So, you got payment for this, or it going on yer third-party insurance?" Yeah-right, like this guy looks like he could afford that.
Amalric starts a little, then stammers. "Uhm... ah... yes... yes, I have something right here... how much?" He fishes out a few gold dragon-coins, each about three-quarters inch in diameter.
"Three-fifty -- " The paramedic stops short, both in speech and on Nate, as Amalric pulls out the coins. Bah-jeez... wow. He doesn't know whether to shake his head or let his jaw drop. "Ah, I mean, like, maybe... three of those."
Amalric is surprised, but he passes the money over, thinking those four might have only gotten him a good night's stay at a fancy boarding house. Maybe. But if it's enough for this guy...
Nate watches the little exchange with half-hearted amusement, twitching only now and again as the 'healer' keeps it up with the silver-nighty gunk. Man, the stuff makes the burns stink, too... but if it helps, and if his body can handle it being sealed in there...
He makes no comment about his apparent healing abilities, either, seeing as how this land is apparently totally unfamiliar with such oddities as regeneration. Another mental note for dealing with these people... doesn't look like there's gonna be too much magic around here, either. *hem* Perhaps he should have a little chat with That New Dragon about lesser-advanced worlds...
... that is, after he's figured out what he can do, once he's healed. Bri... He's gotta figure out what happened to her. All the signs point to her being dead, but he can't just up and suggest that... besides, Bahamut is being far too quiet. Not like he was there any longer than Nate, being a spirit inside the guy...
Well, that does it, he thinks. He'll let this excuse for a medic do the best he can with the burn wounds, and the first time he can move -- ahem -- and get a new set of clothes on him... he's gonna find that magma dragon... and have a serious little talk with 'im.
Amalric, meanwhile, proceeds to hand over three gold dragons to the young gentleman, who, surprisingly enough, begins to work with a bit more zeal and care on Nate.
"Mmm, gonna want to stay away from too much strenuous activity for the next week or so, then maybe you can stop by the office and see how these babies are doing. 'e knows the way, over there." The para jerks his head in Amalric's direction while finishing up his disinfecting and cleaning up. "Gonna wanna keep the dressing on all day, change it when you have to. I'll leave spare."
The medic finishes all he can do with what he's got, makes sure the bandages are on securely, and packs up his things, leaving the gauze on the bedside table -- next to the untouched oatmeal. "Oh yeah... and get some food in you." He grins, tips an imaginary hat to them both, and promptly proceeds to leave.
Amalric stares after the guy for a moment, then quietly closes the door, turning to look Nate over. "So, uhm.... how did you escape, after taking that much damage?"
Nate has a nasty burn on his leg, another on his stomach, and a third on his arm, all covered with gauze... with lesser burns in between, cleansed, but not all covered. He shakes his head slowly, digesting all that just happened and meshing it with how he got into this spot before answering That New Dragon's question.
"I really don't know... we slid down a hole in the mountain path, wound up in this huge cavern, and there he was... big magma dragon, knocked Bri out, coated me with lava... and then I fell through a portal and wound up here. No clue who created it." ... something he means to find out, of course... the very moment he's able.
Amalric nods politely as Nate explains. "I still don't see how a magma dragon could get in here without us knowing about it... or for that matter, how you got here. Of course, not that you need explicit permission to go anywhere, yourself..." He covers up what he hopes isn't a huuuge blunder, his eyes involuntarily showing him Bahamut's silhouette over this young fellow again.
Nate blinks, chuckles, cringes, and recovers, keeping a small grin. "Gosh... you don't have to worry about being so formal. For right now, I'll settle for being just another dragon." This of course causes a little 'hmph' from Bahamut, only half-serious, and he sends a chuckle back.Oh, hush, you.
"But, really... I don't know how much more I can tell you. Just that I want to find that magma dragon, and find out what happened to Bri." He pauses, looking briefly down at himself. "Well... once I can find some clothing, that is." What he's got is once again almost destroyed... though at least it's still keeping him decent.
It's Amalric's turn to chuckle, and that he does, even as he goes over to one of his drawers and pulls it open. "Well, if you don't mind what I'm wearing..." He pulls out a tie-up tunic that might be just about Nate's size; Amalric thinks he's just a touch shorter than Nate, but it should still work.
"... but if you don't mind my asking... who's Bri? What do you plan to do with this magma dragon once you've found him? Other than question him, that is... and how did you get here in the first place? Like I said, this is our first real foray, other than determining that the world was inhabitable."
He brings the clothing back over and sets it down, trusting that Nate will put it on when it's a bit less painful for him to do so.
Nate shakes his head. "Nah, what you've got works... long as people don't stare too much around here." It's a little archaic -- laughably so, since it's exactly what a noble might be wearing on a casual visit to the castle, but when compared to some of the things he's seen around here already... yeah. Quite different.
He's quiet at That New Dragon's first question, though. It briefly occurs to him that he doesn't even know the guy's name yet, but he works out an answer first. "Bri is a friend of mine that wound up coming with me on this trip. We were blown through a portal that was about to close, which flipped out the dimensional magic a bit, I guess... and we wound up in a desert north of here. As for what I'll do when I find that dragon..." He pauses. "Well, it all depends on what condition Bri is in, and whether he knows where she is or not." Try that for avoiding the question, heh... though it's pretty much the truth.
"... and before we get too much deeper... I'm Nathaniel. You can call me Nate." He grins and holds out a (burned) hand.
Amalric is surprised at the sudden turn of subjects, but he can't help but laugh as he gingerly takes that hand and shakes. "I suppose our circumstances didn't allow for formal introductions... Amalric Raidenae, thunder dragon and foray scout for the light clan, at your service.
"I'm really not trying to be nosy... but you've gotten yourself into quite the situation. We have plenty of other priorities on this world before we can go hunting for what might be a renegade dragon. It's somewhat surprising that he seemed to want only to injure you, with that magma attack of his... that, or he was a truly evil spirit and wanted you to die in agonizing pain."
By chance, his eyes land on the bedside table before he looks back to Nate. "Weren't hungry, or just couldn't stomach anything earlier?"
Even if Amalric was being gentle, Nate wrings that hand just a little as he draws it back to calm its nerves; it's like his entire body is feeling sympathy pains for his worst injuries.
"Kind of both... was too lost in pain and thought to eat before. I could go for something warm, though..." Though not hot, he adds to himself.
"... and I know, this isn't something you guys have to get involved in. Once I'm healed enough not to scare little kids, I can go along on my own and find this guy. If he's anywhere within the surrounding area, I should be able to find him pretty quickly." He pauses at a mental prod from within. "That is... unless there are only humans in this neck of the woods?"
"Well, we can go downstairs once you're dressed and see about getting you some food. People are bound to be wondering how we're doing up here by now, anyway..." He gives a half-hearted chuckle. What with the paramedic coming up with him and all... they got enough stares on the way in. Hopefully most of that crowd has moved on by now.
"... but as far as getting up and going after this guy... well, I'd like to introduce you to a few people before that happens. We like to know our numbers, see, and I'm certain many of the elder dragons would be very interested in knowing you're here." ... and now the tough part of his job begins... keeping Sir Bahamut from doing what Amalric perceives he wants. This oughtta be fun...
Nate gives a disdainful chuckle at Amalric's first comment, and it actually doesn't hurt as badly this time. He *will* need a decent amount of food, though, if he wants his regen to keep up with all these fraggin' burn-wounds... hang 'em all.
His face falls, though, as he mentions going out of the way to meet a bunch of dragons that will most likely not have the slightest clue of who he is. That smacks of timewalker violations, as there's absolutely no way that none of the dragons here have heard of his grandfather... and if word gets back to Dragonhome... ... yeah. Not a prayer he can let this happen.
"Isn't there a way we can tell them without going all the way out to the outpost? You said it was at least thirty minutes away?" He quickly bites his tongue before he can add, "Unless you've figured out how to portal on this rock..." He does NOT want to give Amalric an excuse to go through with these plans.
Amalric shakes his head a little. "I suppose you're right, that you may not have to go meet them in person... but at the very least, we should both stay here until I receive further orders. We like to keep track of our numbers, like I said, and I'm not even sure what they'll be wanting me to do next.
"If you want to head downstairs for that food, though..." He motions a hand toward the door.
Sorry, Amalric, Nate isn't so interested in food at this particular point in time. "I'm not a part of your foray, though! I just wound up on this world practically on accident!" He kicks himself for wording it that way, but it's the truth; he shouldn't be here to begin with, much less to get mixed up in something that probably happened aeons ago, in dragon-years.
He and Amalric will go back and forth a few more times [as agreed by both players], but Nate will eventually agree grudgingly to stay at or around the inn until he's feeling a bit better... which could be a day or two, with how badly he's burned, unless they can find a healer. He'll change as quickly as he can, eager now to go down and get something edible -- other than the porridge Amalric brought up earlier.
Nate in summary will have to spend the next two days healing and recovering in the inn, thanks to not having enough food in him and the extent of his burn wounds. At least he's back in decent shape by the time he's ready to go, and despite having gotten to know Amalric decently well during that time, he's more than eager to get out and away from the inn once Amalric finally relents.
Problem is... he really doesn't know where to start. He doesn't even know if the dragon is *in* town, let alone within any kind of radius he could find. Thus, he starts out by moving more toward the center of town from the outside, where his inn was located, occasionally trying to send mentally to Bri... but since he's not the psionic in the group, he's nowhere near successful in that. As all that is, he spends that entire day searching and doesn't come up with much other than frustration and defeat... sigh.
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