4911/Bedside Mannerisms

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Bedside Mannerisms
Date of Scene: 28 January 2021
Location: Medical Ward: Triskelion
Synopsis: No description
Cast of Characters: Peggy Carter, John Constantine

Peggy Carter has posed:
While Peggy can't put her entire life on hold hovering near to those injured and comatose from the night at Jacqueline's, she does have a few spare hours in any given day. Instead of sitting home alone, she's decided to spend those hours here, keeping a man she'd call a friend (to his protest) and a seemingly innocent woman company. This is the second time she's come in as many days, just a warm, worried body and quiet company.

She's settled in a somewhat more comfortable chair she's drug in from the rec area, her feet kicked up on a side table and a tablet in her lap. She's idly going through something on the screen, still clearly lost in her work, though her eyes lift towards John's body and monitors every so often. Perhaps it's just faint hope that he'll figure a way to slip back into his own body, or *anything* will change. Perhaps it's hope in vain. She's still wearing some ugly purple and yellow bruises all around her throat from the night, but she's tried to cover it in some concealer, half worn off from the long day behind her. Otherwise, a green and navy wool tartan dress covers her hourglass frame.

John Constantine has posed:
"You should get some sleep, luv." A dark-haired slip of a woman enters from the infirmary's other door. She looks haggard as well, worn down by physical trauma and exhaustion. There's a slouch to her shoulders and a lack of care regarding her hair or makeup. Though it's difficult to make scrubs and a bathrobe look even halfway decent.

John maneuvers Flora's feet over to the bed and stands next to Peggy, a little closer than is strictly polite. Her hands rest loosely in the pockets of her robe and slippers shuffle on the tile floor. IVs, temporarily disabled, are taped to her forearm.

"You look like you need the rest more than I do. It's not like I'm going anywhere," John says, and Flora's foot gently kicks the underside of the bed holding Constantine's empty shell. "At least not until I get some equipment together. I can't do much spellwork with safety utensils and a crayon. They won't even let me have a bloody lighter," he says, and scowls prettily.

Peggy Carter has posed:
The sound of an unfamiliar voice at the edge of the room makes Peggy momentarily jump out of her skin. She's not on the high guard here that she is in most other areas and simply wasn't expecting someone not one of the medical staff to waltz in, much less someone wearing a different body and that cadence of tone, even if the voice is the woman's. Peggy pulls her feet down, sitting up a bit straighter, especially as he comments she should get some sleep.

"God, John... is that woman *alright* with you just...waltzing about in her body like that? I can't imagine it's comfortable for either of you." Peggy states with a stiff, slightly angered tone that isn't really doing well to conceal the earnest worry behind it. But then, she's been sitting vigil for him -- she's clearly worried.

SHe looks across the tape-and-slippers clad woman, back to his unconscious body, then back up to her eyes. "I can...get you things in here, if you need. I suspect they aren't any happier about you riding her than I am and probably less understanding. But a lighter will set up off the sprinkler systems in here rather immediately, so..." She makes no comment on if she should rest or not, is simply sitting up and firmly awake. Her voice is still rather rasping, but she can speak much better than the first night it happened.

John Constantine has posed:
"She's not thrilled with it," John admits, and shrugs Flora's shoulders. There's a grimace and a twitch of muscles, some internal debate happening and being cut off a moment later. "She doesn't smoke, won't eat red meat, and won't stop complaining about the situation. But I need a host and there aren't a lot of willing and able volunteers about," he says.

John walks Flora over to the supine body and tugs down the collar of the medical gown. A fingertip points to a small, intricate tattoo. "Charm against possession," he says. "It's cutting against me in this case. I can't slip into my old meatsuit without disabling it. Can't get into my overcoat without disabling *those* wards, either. Not unless I want to lose a hand, and Flora disagreed vehemently with that notion."

John grimaces, and rolls one of her shoulders. "And the bloody security won't let me leave the building. Thanks for that, by the by," he tells Peggy with a gimlet look. "So I can't exactly pop out to the corner store for the goods I need."

Peggy Carter has posed:
Peggy's head tilts slightly as he pulls down the edge of that gown and she examines the tattoo. Her brows loft, momentarily confused, but as he explains the way it's cutting backwards a touch of understanding crosses her tired features. "Ahh... so you have basically locked yourself out of your own damn body, is what I'm hearing?" Peggy asks with a smirk. She's trying not to look amused, but there is a hint of amusement behind it all. The situation is a little ridiculous, one had to admit.

"And NO security isn't going to let you walk some other woman's body out of here. We do have *some* standards." She huffs gently, shaking her head to him. "But...if you would stop and listen for a moment, I just said I would go for you. What do you need? I suppose it is better than my sitting here worried, hoping something will magic itself into being better before your organs start shutting down."

The end of those last words really do betray her. Warned away or not, she DOES care and she IS worried. Therefore, the prospect of being able to do something to help is giving her eyes the first glimmer of light they've had in days.

John Constantine has posed:
Constantine aims a cutting glance at Peggy's smirk, and Flora's eyes narrow a little. "Cute," he says. "But more or less. The bloody ghost was lurking on the edge of the aether. Half in, half out of reality. Not really a spectre after all. Probably a gjenganger or something like it. I had to hit it from the other side and there wasn't enough time to think the whole thing through before it smoked out and killed all three of you."

"I can get you a list of things. You might need to go see a few blokes who owe me a favor or two," John tells Peggy. Flora's brows furrow. "Some of them might need to be /reminded/ that they owe me one. I have to work a ritual to disable the spellwork and then another to wrangle a spirit. I'll need at least half an hour uninterrupted to do it, too, somewhere away from cameras and guards. Hard to explain spellwork to security types, I've found."

Peggy Carter has posed:
"You're going to be the death of me, you know?" Peggy states in a tone that is clearly meant to be teasing, an overweighted sigh on the edge of the words, "Of all the things in the world that have tried to kill me, or get me kicked out of SHIELD, you may actually accomplish it." Peggy drags one hand down her face, weighing something for a moment which she already knows the answer to. But she has to try and talk herself out of it.

She fails. She flips the screen dark on her tablet, setting it aside, and instead draws a little flip note book out of her pocket so she can write things down somewhere there will be no digital record. "Fine. Who do I need to butter up for you, where are they, and what else do you need? We'll handle the *where* to put you after..." Peggy's expression is dry resignation, but determination beneath it all. If she can help, she is going to help.

John Constantine has posed:
Using Flora's voice, John starts laying down a list of complex-sounding ingredients, and addresses of where to obtain them. Some of them are quite prosaic, like candles and matches. Others, like 'distilled essence of surrender', sound more like notions than tactile objects.

"It's spread out over a few boroughs. Getting it all in one place, that could raise some red flags. Anyone knew I wasn't riding my own skin, I could be in a world of hurt," John says. He taps the list. "This one, though, the dreamstone shard-- that's going to be a challenge to get. It's rare, and not cheap. Papa Midnite might have some in his storage. Sal's Occult Shop gets some on the black market but word one that you're part of the constabulary, he'll have you hustled out of there. He doesn't care much for badges."

Flora grimaces. "Bloody hell, I hate not having a properly stocked lab. Damned inconvenience."

Peggy Carter has posed:
"...And what of your house? She and I got along... halfway decently. Nothing of use in there?" Peg's eyes go from the possessed woman, back towards the hospital gown clad man. She stares at his body for a few heartbeats, fingertips reaching over to gently touch the cord of the pendant around his neck. She doesn't touch the pendant proper, not wishing to accidentally activate it, but she remembers the strange experience well.

"Either way... this will take me a few days. I still have cases *and* figuring out what the hell happened at Falsworth's in the first place. Probably shouldn't even be here but...better than staring at the ceiling." The implication being sleep is not an easy thing these days. When is it ever? But the set of luggage under her eyes is a good confirmation that since the new year it's just been a little more rough.

John Constantine has posed:
"It's a gamble. House is fickle," John remarks with an even voice. "And we're still on the outs. She might respond to a call. Might not. It's also possible the magic's gone sideways since I'm not in my meatsuit to call it correctly. You could end up getting shunted into the basement. You'd die of old age before finding your way out of there, /if/ something doesn't eat you," he advises Peggy. "I'm not quite that desperate. Not yet, anyway." Hands fish around in Flora's pockets, looking for a lighter and cigarette pack that don't exist.

"Bollocks," John snarls again.

Peggy Carter has posed:
Dark eyes settle on her(him??) quietly for a few moments, a slight grimace across her features. And then Peggy looks back to that pendant on his unconscious body and reaches over to carefully scoop up the back of his head so she can guide it off his neck by the leather that holds it. She then slips it over her neck and smirks back at him, "I've met her once. I am fairly good with cranky old ladies who have lots of power. I'll decide when we're that desperate because the moment your body starts shutting down without you in it, I'm getting you back there. Your friends' assistance or not."

The last comment is said with a nod towards her notebook where they've written down all the bits of ingredients and people she should speak with on his behalf. She slips that book into the pocket of her tartan skirt, secure for the hunt she's about to start. "And no smoking. Not your body, not your choice."

John Constantine has posed:
"I'd say it's got about four days," John tells Peggy. Flora nods at the recumbent form, kept alive only by autonomic impulses. "A body can't survive indefinitely without a soul, and mine's been through worse than most. I need to get this situation sorted before it gets any worse. If I take too long it'll start to come apart at the seams. And we--" Flora taps her head "--can't share this space indefinitely, either. Bodies can't hold two spirits. With both of us in here, it's just a matter of time until push comes to shove. I'm meaner than Flora, but it's her home space. A fight over it is going to do some damage to the upholstery, if you get my meaning."

Peggy Carter has posed:
"Then I'll take two and see how many of your friends have still decided to be friends. If I can't find enough, then...I pay a certain lady a visit and mind my manners on your behalf." Peggy smirks at the possessed body quietly, but the look in her eyes is one of simple and pure determination. She's already stolen the pendant, it's unlikely she's going to be willing to give it up.

Then she stands, crossing to the man's stolen frame. Her fingertips reach out to take Fiona's hand for just a moment. She gives a quiet, warm squeeze. "We'll figure this out, John...then you can go back to being your usual annoying asshole self. And give this poor woman her space."

John Constantine has posed:
Flora's mouth curls up in a smile, and John squeezes Peg's hand in response. "Obliged, luv," he says, and Flora gives Peggy's chin a gentle chuck between thumb and forefinger. "Bloody inconvenient looking up at you though," he quips. "I haven't been this tiny since I was in school shorts. Shake a leg then, eh?" he encourages, and gives Peggy's hip an encouraging swat before drifting towards the reclining body again. "I'll make sure I don't get up and wander off while you're taking care of things," John promises, and Flora sketches a familiar, lazy salute to her eyebrow.

Peggy Carter has posed:
Peggy's eyes roll quietly to the ceiling as she heads back to her seat so she can start gathering up her few things. Coat, purse, the book she pretended she was going to read and never touched. Though she did read some of it to him last night, an old noir mystery. She slips it into her purse for possibly better times. "After all this is over, you owe me so much more than a breakfast." She quips out lightly, but isn't really meeting eyes as she says it. That might imply she wants more than breakfast. She slips her shoulders into her coat and loops her purse across one, meeting him at the door again. "Go. Rest. Give this woman some peace. I'll start some visits and won't mention your name too often, lest I get shot for my troubles."

John Constantine has posed:
"Probably wise," John agrees, and Flora waves off Peggy.

Once she's gone the roguish disposition leaves Flora's face and she goes over to Constantine to pull his shirtfront open. A palm rests against his sternum and an incantation is muttered. Red marks, angry tattoos inked in blood, rise up on the skin. They fade in a few moments, but their visibility seems only to have Constantine more concerned than ever.

Constantine looks up at a window, and Flora's face looks back at him. A moment later the reflection moves of its own accord. "Please," it begs. "Please, just let me go. I don't want to be a part of this."

Constantine grimaces. "No one does, girl," he tells the reflection. "But I've a long way to go yet before anyone of us are in the clear."

"Just tell them what's going on!" Flora begs him. "They'll understand! They'll help!"

"They'll just get in the way," Constantine says with a grim expression. "I can't afford to stop. I'm too close now."

Flora starts sobbing in the reflection and Constantine shuts her eyes, grimacing and shaking away the apparition. When he looks out the window again, the shadow reflection is gone, leaving only a young woman with a haunted look and eyes too old for her youthful features.