DeClan Asher Quinn

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255 Writing Contribution Superstar

About DeClan Asher Quinn

  • Rank
    Nicely Seasoned


    Ben Hill
  • RACE
    Metahuman Elf
  • JOB
    Physician/ Surgeon - Head of NY ER
    New York
    Slender build, DeClan stands 6’2” with reddish brown hair that is prematurely graying. His eyes are a silvery gray and always seem to shimmer with an intensity that betrays his dark past, highlighted by the slightly dark shadows that seem to linger below the dark lashes these days and the 5’oclock scruff that never seems to go away. At work he is in his blue scrubs and white coat, but away from work he tends to be comfortable in jeans and tees or soft slacks. His attire always neat and polished.

    Only his ears betray the transformation that took place during the resonance, the extended helix holding the characteristic point of the elves.
    DeClan is fairly brooding. He is intense when it comes to work but a little lost when it comes to social settings. He is torn between his desire to be alone and an innate need to be with others. He is level headed most of the time, but suffers emotional swings tied to a his lingering PTSD. But to those that know him well and understand these unpredictable swings, he is a very loyal ally.
    He has only a few things that he would be violent for… one is his 1942 fully restored XA 750 Harley Davidson… one is his Ocean Star 56.1 sailing yacht… and the last is a silver chain necklace that is always around his neck… its hanging treasure always hidden inside his shirt…a platinum ring with an inscription inside… the match sits on his left ring finger. He has also recently aquired a gun with two magazines - not his favorite possession but for now he is keeping it.


    TECH DISRUPTION - This potentially could be a real threat to others if he ever learned to use it but the ability is passive at the moment. Technology tends to fritz around the good doctor. He no longer bothers to carry a cell phone nor has a TV or computer in his home. His renown as a skilled surgeon has only grown because he has been forced to perform without the help of the high tech gadgets that have been evolving in the last century. Some see it as arrogance but in truth its out of necessity as he doesn’t trust the displays to tell him the truth when he is at the helm.

    HEIGHTENED DEXTERITY - His mutilated race has given him some of the typical characteristics of the elves but this has become fairly potent. DeClan always was very agile, his propensity for rock climbing just one way he developed this skill in the past. Now his lean form is very nimble, his balance rivaling any feline on a roofs edge.

    HEIGHTENED HEARING - His ears had more than a physical transformation. Like other elves, his hearing is almost dog-like now.

    LANGUAGE AFFINITY – Since the world fell apart, DeClan has discovered he has the ability to pick up languages at an alarmingly rapid rate. Other than English he currently knows Amharic (learned in Ethiopia), Latin (learned as part of Medical research), Gaeilge (learned in Ireland) and Portuguese (Learned in Angola), with several other languages already known on a very basic level. He is now reluctant to expose himself to more languages, still unnerved by the strange ability.
    Unsurpassed skills as a surgeon including microsurgery.

    Skilled free form rock climber. He doesnt like to use harnesses - a bit of a death wish perhaps.

    Fixing and riding motorcycles and sailing yachts.
    DeClan was a driven kid of an upper middle class family who had a soft spot for helping injured things. Everything from fallen baby birds to cats that had been hit by cars were dragged into his mother’s kitchen to get his very “serious” attention. His above average intelligence put him ahead of kids his age by the time he was five, graduating from high school at just fourteen, going on to study medicine at both Harvard and Hopkins. Graduating top of his class, DeClan was invited to do his internship actually at John Hopkins in Baltimore before being offered a position on their Cardiac team. It was at Hopkins that DeClan met Sam (short for Samantha). She was on her first year of residency and he had been three years on the Cardiac staff. The attraction was obvious to everyone. They were living together in three months and married just eight months later. They were soul mates.

    It was shortly after their first anniversary that DeClan and Sam joined Doctors without Borders. They both wanted to take the skills they had and offer people that would never have access to that knowledge their help. They worked in Somalia and Burundi before ending up in Ethiopia in early 2010. They had survived everything from months of drought to sand storms, giving aid to children that were dying from lack of food and water, inoculating against the most basic diseases that had been wiped out elsewhere in the world. Both avid athletes they had been together eight years and were prepared for everything… except December 2010. The light had been blinding.. the cloud of soot that came with it suffocating. People were losing their minds, chaos was the new norm.. abilities that shouldn’t be possible were emerging in often violent ways as they stayed to help the people who had nothing, exposing themselves further to the Nevus seepage.

    Sam wasn’t the same. Within days she was showing signs of dementia… DeClan catching her more than once out in the desert eating sand. He became fixated on getting her out and “curing” her, unaware that he himself was being changed. But they were in the middle of nowhere Ethiopia and there were not exactly life flight coming in the days that followed. On the seventh day he went out to get water to try and ease his wife’s fever. He returned to find her with a knife dangling in her fingertips.. blood everywhere. She had torn her stomach apart.. her entrails exposed as she lay in the last throws of death. She had been pregnant and he hadn’t known… the child changing within her… driving her mad…. He was a top surgeon of John Hopkins…. and he couldn’t save her…. the child and his wife lost all at once.

    And through his grief, his own body was altering.. DNA melding into something hybrid. He buried her in Ethiopia… in the shifting sands beside children she had cried over… her wedding band hanging around his neck as he screamed his grief into the soot covered winds of the harsh Africa plains.

    For three days he sat on her grave.. unable to feel anything for those dying around him…for those slaughtering others around him… his oaths forgotten in his pain, amidst a new kind of war.
    It was a blur from there, death upon death and more than once, his own hands had wrought it. Little of what happened to him in Africa is known by anyone. He never speaks of it, trapped within an erratic case of PTSD that seems to trigger at random his outbursts.
    He got out of Ethiopia on his own…stealing a boat and sailing all the way around the cape, stopping only once in Angola to restock his supplies… he wanted to put as much distance as possible between himself and that hell on earth. He found out only later that hell had consumed everything.

    DeClan spent the first two years after the event covering the tell tale signs that he wasn’t wholly human anymore. Hats pulled low over the elongated ears. They were a sign of everything he hated in the world, of what had stolen his precious Sam from him. He wanted nothing to do with Altered, nothing to do with medicine, nothing to do with himself.

    DeClan packed up their home in Baltimore, putting everything that reminded him of her in storage before getting on the Harley he had been storing while they were in Africa and heading for New York. He discovered he had a tough time with the equipment when he started working again, suddenly beginning to understand it wasn’t the equipment, but his effect on the equipment causing it. It was about this time that a bottle of vodka began to be his normal breakfast and dinner.

    He has spent the last several years working in the ER of the remains of the New York Downtown Hospital. He spends most of his nights in the lab he set up in his loft apartment, researching how to not only improve the antivirus into a cure… but cure those like himself, bastardized races that blended into something else, hoping to one day wipe the blight away from the earth once more….thus far failing miserably. The loft is now his sanctuary… watching out the big windows to scowl at the world around him.

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  1. “Shut. Up. You do not. How the hell don’t you fall? Aren’t you afraid you’re going to fall?” He blinked thoughtfully before shrugging and shaking his head. No… It was very matter of fact. He never had fear when he climbed. Only freedom. If he fell and died so be it, but it was a thought that didn’t taint with fear. Head tilted, ears dipping slightly as he studied the wide-eyed expression she was languishing on him. Clearly his reaction wasn’t what she would call…normal. “Could never do that in a million years, climbing I mean. My feet are on the ground... or at the very least something solid.” A hint of smirk danced over his lips. Doesn’t get much more solid than the rock edifice of a mountain. He smiled with her regarding his experience with the swordfish. Even he had to admit it was funny that he had been the only doctor around to treat himself. Trying to explain in his very broken Bantu Swahili what to do to the local with him had been a complete comedy of errors. He had asked for water and somehow got a goat… he had asked for rags and somehow got a stick. He was lucky he hadn't bled to death on the spot. Eyes watched the move of sleeve. The telltale mark of a burn, doctor's eyes reading it easily. Likely from an oven, he had seen a lot of those in his day. “Taking a pizza out of the oven while I was naked.” Bingo. However to manage to get a second burn across her navel was….. novel. He wasn’t really sure how one managed to get that one when pulling something out of the oven, even naked. “Ruined the pizza when I dropped it. Figured after that I needed to learn to cook instead of forgetting about frozen stuff and setting off fire alarms. The naked part is another story altogether” Odd. It was the last part he was actually interested in but was denied the story. Naked came up a lot in their conversation. The very thought made elongated ears blush. He hadn't thought of naked skin as more than something to operate on in over eight years. And he could honestly tell himself the type of naked he was thinking of at the moment was most definitely not clinical in nature. Her surly smile was doing nothing to de-crimsonify his elongated appendages. As she walked to the kitchenette to rinse her bowl he took a moment to compose himself, sipping from the newly filled mug as he glanced at the bowl he had set aside. He hadn't eaten enough…. per usual. But as he watched her from the corner of his gaze, he was frankly more distracted by her licking the spoon than his own food. "C'mon Doc,what else ya got? If you drop your pants and show me one on your ass I'm gonna die." Brow raised before a mischievous smirk lit the corner of his lips. Hand scratching at the back of his neck. The scar on my ass will just need to stay a mystery for now. Lets just say me and a painted wolf had a disagreement. He had all kinds of fun injuries while working in Africa. "Better take care of that on your cheek though, might scar," Blink was clearly not comprehending her comment as his hand lifted to touch the wrong cheek, rubbing over the faint scruff before checking the other cheek, muscle down to the jaw flinching when he did. Oh… the cable had hit him in the storm. He had completely forgotten about it. Pulling his hand away there was no blood, just the raised welt there. Shrug was absent minded. Eh…. hardly serious…. besides… supposedly ladies like scars or something like that right? Brow lifted as she confessed her powers might reach into the realm of healing. She wanted him to be… a guinea pig? Healers. There were lots of them now. Time would come when the one thing he was good at would be obsolete. Then what? He would have no purpose. It was an ugly and sobering thought that drew the mug up for a complete draining.
  2. "…the good stuff…" Of course…. Smile was easy as he put his own cup to his lips, nearly finishing the rich liquor off. He suspected she would like it. Most would. It was the "good stuff" as she so eloquently noted. Shoulders had finally sunk into a more natural relaxed position as he let his weight rest fully against the wall. Asking for anecdotes about himself was uncomfortable but in an oddly relaxing way. It had been so long since he had shared and somehow this felt…. Ok. Sharing with her felt…. Ok. “I know about the motorcycles, not fair. Rock climb? Are you a roper or one of those crazy-ass free climbers?” Brows lifted at being accused of being "unfair", lips parting before clamping shut and then offering a shy smile. Bowl was set on the top of the little black stove, keeping it warm as he rubbed the back of his neck, rest of his cup vanishing down his throat before turning to move to the bottle at the kitchen counter for a refill. The half under his breath answer coming as though he might be in trouble. ……..crazy-ass free climbing…… “Something daredevil… something daredevil… fell in the water off a sailboat once near Madagascar, actually tangled with a great white trying to get back on the boat.” He was pouring his cup, turning to top off hers just as she was pulling up her pant leg, there was a momentary flush to the elongated tips of his ears. The thought crossing his mind not as "clean" as her slender ankle with its long healed scar. Throat cleared softly as he poured some more in her mug before heading back to the kitchen to set the half empty bottle on the counter once more. As he walked back, right hand pushed the sleeve up on his left bicep, rotating the arm up like he was flexing a large 3in diameter dimple could be seen in the front, turning to show it from behind there was a matching dimple on the other side. Speared by a swordfish diving of the coast of Tanzania…. Pointing to the left side of his chest under the arm… Tip went between the two ribs, nearly punctured my lung…. Chuckle came as he lifted the fresh mug to his lips, pausing to add…. Wouldn’t have been so bad if I wasn’t the only doctor for over three hundred miles….
  3. "Most likely not... my studies took me to different places with much different drinking habits. I was staying with a Russian art restoration project once, the vodka alone was blitzing... someone had gotten ahold of some Appalachian moonshine." Chuckle was soft. Like Akpeteshie…. local brew in Ghana. He had definitely had his share of….unusual…. liquors. "I remember very little, but I do remember... my friends didn't." Smirk was a bit lopsided….soft "been there"… escaping his lips. Fork pushed the goulash in his bowl as he watched her plop into the small couch in front of the bed. Smile lingered as she agreed that it had to be good, no arrogance at all there. He listened quietly as he bit the screw top and unwound the cap while still holding his bowl in the other, the metal spat into the tiny sink, even if she didn’t drink much, he doubted he would be leaving any liquid in the bottle before the night was out. Both mugs were filled more than three quarters full, bit much but they weren't going anywhere tonight and likely they would be sleeping in until well into the day waiting for the sun to heat up the straight before setting out. Bo sounded like his Sam. She burnt toast even when the toaster was on the right setting. He never managed to figure out how the hell she did that. Walking over he set the "Evil Genius" mug on the arm of the couch, knowing the liquor would go down dangerously smooth. He tended to only keep good strong stuff in stock at the loft. I was the cook as well…. Quiet confession didn’t seem to really be to her. "So what else do you do besides sail ships and save lives? I tell you something, you tell me something. You know I'm an artist, and professional world traveler. I know Aikido and was lost in the Paris catacombs for a day." Lips parted only to clamp shut again as he blinked at her. He didn’t share… at least…. he hadn't shared in a very long time. He had managed to be a gruff enough ass to keep people from bothering to try and delve into any personal factoids about his life. Confronted with the question he felt himself completely uncertain how to respond. Throat cleared as he moved to lean against the wall across from her rather than the kitchen counter off to her side. The bowl in one hand and the drink in the other he sought sustenance from the mug since he didn’t have a free hand to use the fork…. that was the perception anyway as he imbibed his preference trying to gather his thoughts. Tongue licked over his lips before quiet words finally left them. Every time I get off for a week or more… I sail down to the island….. if I only have a few days… I head to the mountains to rock climb….. just like to get…away…. Mug was swirled before being brought to his lips again, it was missing half of what he had slid into it already. …..and fix old motorcycles when I only have a day off…… Faint smile was quirked as he half shrugged at the confession.
  4. "Spent a lot of time with Bo in places that didn't have take-out. Or proper nutrition, or clean water." Nod came with a distant smile, the gaze vaguely focused somewhere in the past. Been there myself. Doctors without borders had led him and Sam to some of the most remote locations where they waited for supplies that never came forcing them to subsist on practically thin air. It was horrid, usually hot, and death surrounded them, yet he remembered it fondly. He blinked at the bowl thrust at him, glancing to the bottle of Hennessey in his other hand. Drinking he was good at….. eating…. not so much. He was always starving for an appetite. The cut of muscles was pronounced from sailing and rock climbing but also because there was little else of meat on the bone. It hadn't always been like that, he ate well with Sam, usually out at a diner or pizza hovel after she had burned a meal. Sam couldn’t cook water in a microwave. It did smell good. "If you don't like it the rum is what I get, if you do.. I get a tumbler of that.." Chuckle was soft in his chest. That’s quite the risk, that cooking slop could rot your gut. Taking the bowl he leaned a shoulder against the wall near the small row of cabinets that passed for a studio kitchen. Hennessey was set gingerly on the counter as the fork pushed around in the goulash. He doubted he could eat it all but not eating any would be an insult. Fork pushed up through the depths of the steaming bowl, lips pursing to blow over the bite before finally slipping the fork over his tongue. Expression remained impassive as he chewed, like a pompous French food critic, the brows quirked and fell as if pondering the flavors. Finally the nod came with a tilt of his head and shrug. Eh…. not bad….. Lit eyes and grin betraying he was teasing her as he couldn’t hold the straight face. Not bad at all…. a cup of the good stuff it is then…. The fork was slid back into the bowl so he could reach up and pull open the cabinet that held the mugs. Not exactly as classy as a lowball glass but it was all he had here. A white mug with a the faded words "Evil Genius At Work" on it was set on the counter before he reached in and pulled a dull yellow one that held an iconic smiley face grin on it. Honestly…. Would feel bad if the other stuff left you sick for days…. Smirk was warm.
  5. Grab of his hand drew a tightening in his gut, the blink again wide and boyish as a husk lingered in his throat causing him to hold his tongue or else betray it. "You're an odd duck Asher." Lips parted then closed again before a faint lopsided grin crossed his expression. Well….. I have been called worse. The soft words betrayed it, a sensual husk murmuring at the base of his throat, rumbling deep in his chest. Throat cleared as she smiled in return and trotted up the steps two at a time. Thumb unconsciously hitched into the pocket of his jeans, tugging them a bit to the right before lighting the last stove mumbling softly under his breath about what the hell was really going on here. He had been a recluse and an outcast so long he had forgotten he had once been a carefree spirit, a charming quick-witted socialite, a Casanova that swept women off their feet until one returned the favor. The room was cold once more but something itched warm at him. Breath huffed violently from his lips as he tried to shake the husk and warm tingle in his chest, finishing up and lightly taking the stairs. Her cough drew a stifled laugh. That nasty rum he cooked with. She must have swigged it. Stuff was only really good to cook with. Nostrils flared at the scents billowing out the door. Damn…he only stored here things that could keep for months at a time. He never managed to make rice, powdered milk, bouillon cubes, beans, jerky and canned corn smell that good. He had a few spices in the kitchen but he never did much with them when he did the speedy edible meal when he was out here. Head peeked into the room. Smells good….. Shit… he hadn't realized how cold he was until he walked into the room that was now toasty warm from the stove. Smile was a bit shy before his hip rested on the footboard of the bed and pushed to the side, the entire thing sliding to the right to expose a trap door in the floor. I store the good liquor down here… Pulling the ring the wood door opened to reveal almost a dozen bottles in various states of being drunk. Hand slid over them before plucking a Hennessey Cognac out of the trap and closing the door, the bed pushed back into place. Probably a bit better than that cooking slop you swigged. Grin came with a wink.
  6. Cold cold cold cold…….. COLD! Bare feet bobbed up and down as he worked to light the first stove. Brain was still trying to figure out what had just happened. It wasn’t the first time he had parked out here in the cold… he just normally was alone and ensured he showered and got dressed with shoes included before he came back down. The fire had just barely lit when a warmth tickled at his ankles causing the spine to straighten a bit, head cocking oddly at the stove. That was quick….. "Nothing to be sorry for." The voice and hand caused him to stand abruptly, nearly knocking her chin with the top of his head, pivoting to find himself mere inches in front of her, hand now on his arm. Blink was a bit boyish as silver grew and shrunk with the flex of his pupils to focus on her features. "Didn't say I didn't like it, can always use some help taming the curly mop." I um…….. The blink came again. What was he supposed to say here? Shoulders stopped shivering as warmth billowed against his clothes and crept over his skin. Blink was slower as her proximity was suddenly…. close. There was a tip back of the ears without the telltale crimson blush, silver focusing again. So close…… "I'm going to fix something to eat. Come up when you're done." Throat cleared as he leaned a bit back, her words waking him from the vacuum of space that seemed to be disappearing from between them just a moment before. Ya…… Throat cleared again as he took an actual step back this time with a nod. Sure… I will be up in a minute. Soft words had a husk that another clear of his throat chased away as he turned to remember where the other stove was. He took a little time as she disappeared, needing a moment to recover from….whatever the hell…. had just happened. By the time the third stove was going his feet were back to half frozen. The warmth she had billowed around him having lost its effect. A foot on the bottom step he stayed staring up to the open door to the loft. He had two options. Go to the boat, start the small furnace in there and settle in for the night with complete disregard for the fact he had told her he would be up…… or…… go up. Problem with up…. whatever had happened, had still happened….. if he chose the boat…. perhaps it had never happened. He lingered a moment longer before left foot slipped from the ground and took the next step. Up it was.
  7. It was strange. He never talked this much outside of work, and there he only spoke of sutures and microsurgical procedures. He had done the same thing when he had visited her to check on her wounds. "Maree is my pseudonym, most people can't pronounce Maree'Anca so I just let them.. reminds me of someone I lost too." He blinked and glanced at her, almost as though he missed that he had been talking to a live person who was actually listening to what he said. Maree'Anca… It was said softly, testing it on his tongue, his transformation had altered vocal chords ever so slightly which would allow him to speak the musical language of the elves if he knew it. It mixed with his newfound uncanny ability to pick up languages but it was wasted on most of them except perhaps Gaelic. It also gave him an unnatural ability for mimicry of sound so her name tripped off the tongue with an almost perfect cadence. "Memories are yours to keep, they're something nobody can take from you. You like Asher, then it's Asher. No need to rationalize... it's what you want it to be." There was a soft chuckle that barely resonated in his chest as he shook his head gently. Or….. just hiding….. Words came as he scrunched her wet hair and then pondered at the possibility of being stuck in the morning due to ice. "I can.. I can probably fix that....never done anything like that before, but... I probably could if you don't want to be stuck here." Head shook as a knee rested on the couch behind her to work the other side of the plait. You unnaturally warm water and you harm the fish….. they can't handle rapid temperature changes…. hate to have our friend follow us this far only to kill him. Smile was a bit lopsided as he rubbed his finger into the towel at the base of her skull to pick up the moisture dripping from the back of her hairline and down her neck, oblivious of his own actions until she caught his hands, causing an instant freeze. "I'm my own heater. You don't have to do that, unless you want to." He forgot to breathe as he blinked at her hands wrapped over his fingers, only now really aware of what he had been doing. Throat cleared softly… Sorry….. Quiet apology came as he gingerly pulled his fingers and the towel away and out from under her fingers. Throat cleared again as he realized just how "comfortable" he had become. It was something he had not felt in a while and an edge of guilt crept around the corners of his embarrassment. He stood fluidly from the couch, walking to the bathroom to lay the towel over the sink to dry. Hands wiped on his hips as though using his jeans as a towel as bare feet padded past her, words soft… Need to get the heater running downstairs…..don't want water in the garage to freeze, it will crack the hull…. gotta get the air to stay above freezing… With that he slipped out and down the stairs, shuddering violently as he realized the large open space of the garage was significantly colder than the room upstairs. The bare feet didn’t help. He had installed three small black wood stoves around the expanse of the garage about four years ago when a thin layer of ice formed overnight around Sam and scared the dickens out of him. The stoves didn’t warm up the space like it did in the small room above, it just helped keep the air over 30 degrees, usually right around 40 when it got this cold. It was enough to stave off the ice. Crouching at the first one with a shiver running over his shoulders he began to work on getting the flames going, trying to ignore what had just happened… trying to ignore how natural it felt.
  8. "Sorry.." Head lifted quizzically, unsure what she was apologizing for as she sketched in her pad. That’s right, she was an artist. He remembered that from when he went to her place to check on her wounds. Silver watched her hands move instead to work on her damp hair, the plait growing and shrinking as it was done and undone several times before being abandoned. "Sorry, I wasn't thinking..." A light shrug came as he stared at the small stove that gave off tremendous heat, hands still in his pockets. Nothing to be sorry about….I haven't really talked about her since….well….. since I lost her. Crouching he opened the small door to push another couple pieces of split wood inside, a third piece used to push the burning chars around in the black belly. The quiet words drifting as if she were not even there. Asher isn't even my last name…… Crackle burst as a log in the back broke in half with his prodding, silver eyes lost on the lick of flames inside. Its my middle. No one knew that. He had no idea why he was telling her. Elbow rested on his crouched knee as the little stove became the most interesting thing in the world. We worked in the same hospital. When people put Doctor in front of my last name excited, I was guaranteed to turn around and see her standing there. Small door was pushed shut, handle locked before his hand slid slowly over wet curls. I couldn’t stand the thought to hear it, turn around…… and her not be there. Hands pushed on his knees to stand again, he suddenly felt old. After a while…. I just got used to not having a last name. He watched the water bead off the half plate and bleed into her threadbare sweater. She would catch her death, even with the heater going. Standing near the wall of the loft he could feel winter's bite latching onto the outside of the building. The temperature was dropping. Bare feet padded back into the small bathroom to open the cabinet and pull out a dry towel. Coming back he unconsciously took her plait in hand, wrapping it into the dry towel, powerful fingers squeezing the towel around her hair without pulling or twisting. Clearly it was not the first time surgeons hands handled long hair. Going to be real cold tonight. If there is too much ice in the channel we might not be able to sail out tomorrow.
  9. “I know. I can feel it, Ten years like yesterday.” Ya…. His soft admission agreeing to the fact that it still felt like yesterday so often. It was odd. Sailing out here had been one of the first times that Sam had managed to not linger thick in his thoughts. He hadn't let go her hand yet when she wiped the moisture from her eyes, drawing the brow downward. What had he done now? He was so bad at the social thing. He had spent the last ten years being nothing more than a hermit or a surgeon. The extent of his social had been across the bar from a tender that knew him just enough to always pour the right drink and keep the other patrons off him. He was just about to ask what was wrong. “Sorry, Comes with the territory, just a lot more tuned in without the background ‘noise’ of a million other people. You’ve always had this… wall. Hard to read.” Oh…. It wasn’t a very eloquent reaction. Sorry….. Neither was that. Throat cleared as he tried to collect himself to say something better. He knew he was hard to read. He preferred it that way… it kept people at a distance. He didn’t get the chance as he felt the towel begin to slip from his hips resulting and a chain of movement that left her palm on his wet chest and her features a mere inch from his silver orbs. “You cannot possibly be this much of a clutz,” I'm not. The frown and protest almost had a boyish indignant charm. As she managed to pull away first he pivoted a hip slightly so he could open the towel without exposing himself and retighten it around his waist. He free climbed fucking mountains. He wasn’t a clutz. Petulant frown side-glanced at her, ears dipping back had lost much of the red blush. He was just socially inept one on one. Not exactly something he was going to voice aloud. He blinked as he was tossed a warmer towel and his duffle was dumped at his feet. Tossing the warm one around his shoulders he bent down to unzip the duffle. "You should tell me about her" Mmmm…. He didn’t seem to have fully grasped what she said as he pulled out a long sleeved gray tee and a pair of black jeans. "Was she a doctor?" Yea….. Reply was automatic but soft as he rubbed the warm towel over his cold damp hair, unaware she was peeking as he dropped it onto the floor and lifted his arms over his head to slip the tee over his forearms, stretching the neck out as he flipped it over his head before sliding it down his torso. Towel around his waist had once again begun to creep down the hips, his V muscle exposing as he snapped the jeans out in front of him and slid a foot into one leg with the towel still around his waist. Pediatric surgeon…… Towel fell off to the ground as he wriggled the jeans up the damp thighs and finally found some modesty again as he buttoned the row of silver heads before letting the tee fall over the waist. “You can tell me it’s none of my business, that’s fair, I can’t read minds, my mojo doesn’t work that way… …but I’m absolutely sure, whatever happened, it wasn’t your fault.” Head shook a bit as he grouched and picked up the two towels, ears dipping back like a guilty puppy as the frown lingered. Hand rubbed over the pained expression as he walked back into the small bathroom to hang the towels over the rail on the wall, words coming quietly from inside the safety of the other room. I didn’t save her…. He breathed deeply before exiting the bathroom again, hands sheepishly in his pockets as shoulders shrugged a bit at her. Silver watching her chew her lip, wondering what she was thinking. "If Gertrude knew I was sitting here with you in a towel she would kick my ass," No…she'd strip you down and spank you over a knee… It came out unexpectedly, mirth clear in the tone. His mother hen was a vicious lioness when it came to his protection. For the longest time she had been the only one on his side.
  10. He completely missed the mouse sneak into the bathroom to retrieve his jeans. Shoulders had relaxed to the point of borderline slumber. He had been running on adrenaline since the events at the hospital. He drank too much and ate and slept too little. It was a bad combination. Cold alone snapped him from his reverie, bringing the womb of warmth to an abrupt halt. By the time he peeked out of the bathroom he was not sure what to say to her. The fact that she was not there drawing him out of the bathroom with a blink. Where had she…… as if on cue she came in with his duffle, dropping it onto the couch. Blink at her was pronounced. Was she expecting him to sleep in the same bed as her?? Lips parted only to shut as she spoke, acutely aware that he was dripping and naked under a towel and she was once more fully clothed. “I’m sorry, I made some connections... I had no idea, have no right to be here. This is your space. I can crash here until you come back up from the south alone.” Wait….what?? “The boat, your delirium at the hospital. Sam, was your wife,” He had taken a step towards her only to freeze in his tracks as "her" name was spoken. Fingers of his right hand reflexively went up to curl around the two platinum bands that hung from the chain around his neck that she indicated… met by her hand closing over his. Somewhere in the mix he forgot to breathe, heat wafting from her touch that made his spine shiver with the droplets still slinking down his skin. “The loss is so much deeper. A spouse is someone you choose, not something you're born into without choice. There is no sorrow like it. I'm starting to understand you a bit. But... .don’t let this, make this numb.” The frown was puzzled, lost, as she touched his forehead with a smile. “Life is still out there, and doesn't require you to forget in order to still love it. You relax up here, I’ll sleep in the boat. I’m my own space heater. Don't sweat the shower thing. I'm European, I've been to topless beaches. A lot. Doesn't always end well for gingers” What the hell was happening? Brain was fogged, Sam now lingering in his thoughts in a very "real" way. In a way he hadnt thought of her in a long time. As Maree turned to get her things, his hand caught hers, pausing her turn away. At first he didn’t say anything, his brain had paused, words refusing to form. The silence lingered like a weight in the room before lips finally were dampened in preparation to speak. What to respond to first was still uncertain. I sleep… in the boat… because I prefer it. The sway feels more natural at times than a motionless bed. He didn’t let go her hand as wet bare feet shifted closer, the furl of his brow betrayed he struggled for words and yet wanted to speak. Lips were licked again as a breath lifted the wet chest. Ten years ago…. It was said as though Maree would understand. The frown still lingering as he absently lifted his free hand to caress a thumb over the side of the smaller ring. …that I um….. lost her…………. ten years ago. It was the first time he acknowledged it out loud since it had happened. Now said aloud, it seemed almost absurd that after so much time he still struggled. But there was more to the story than that. He had not been able to save her. So many had been snatched from death by his hands, but she….she he had failed. Makes no sense for you to stay here…..island is big enough for both of us if you are looking to be alone…. and at least its warm there. He still hadn't let go her hand as he realized his towel was not as secure as he wanted, hands snapping to grab the hem as it started to slip from his hips, pulling her closer in the effort before successfully releasing her fingers. He blinked at her as he bent slightly at the waist in an effort to retuck without exposing, putting him nose to nose with the hiding ginger.
  11. The blink at her naked form seemed to last an eternity. The mere fraction of a moment leaving a burned image. It had been a long time since he had appreciated the naked female form other than a body on an operating table. He had to admit it was a beautiful form to appreciate. Her dark curls laying wet clinging to her neck and down her collarbone, one long curl hooked just around a round…. He had spun around in the hopes of being released of the memory of the visage only for it to burn deeper, flushing the ears a brilliant crimson. "You speak Czech?.That’s a bit disconcerting. I’ll watch my language from now on." He had almost made it out the door when she spoke, head shook as he cleared his throat after the first "No" nearly had a pubescent squeak before the timber became once more deep and masculine. No….. no… but swearing in any language has a… cadence… a rhythm….so…. you know…… Hand rubbed the back of his cold neck as the chill ran bumps over every inch of flesh. “Get in there before your freeze.” Huh?... Not his most eloquent response but under the circumstances it was understandable. It took him a moment to gather his wits as he heard the metal rings of the shower curtain slide away. It wasn’t like the curtain offered any privacy, but somehow the lack of it between them only burned his ears brighter. I um…. got a shower on the boat can use….really just….. you can enjoy it all here… you know…. to yourself…. I mean… Of course, the shower on the boat was small, he had to duck under the spout and hope that the tiny heater would give him about 3 min of lukewarm water. “Get in there now Asher, while the water is still hot, I can’t sail that thing myself if you catch pneumonia... and my toes are itching for some sandy beaches to walk in.” He half jumped at her curt words before her toe pushed at the bathroom door and she slid out by his side to pass towards the stove. Ya…. I guess I could…. you know…. and then… get out of your way and all…. I mean…. water's already hot… Side glance appreciated the damp legs that pushed out from under her towel, tracing the curve just behind her knee before he pivoted and found himself facing back into the bathroom. Swallowing he pushed inside and quietly closed the door, breathing once more only once it clicked into place. He suddenly wished he had put a lock on the darn thing. Perhaps if he had she would have locked it and this all could have been avoided. Wet jeans nearly fell off his narrow hips… he needed to eat more. They crashed to the tile floor with a sickening slop as he reached in and turned the water back on. Muscles melted as he stepped into the tiled surround and slid the curtain shut to keep the water from splashing over the entire room. There was another benefit to this shower, it had real water pressure. Sighing gently to himself, gray eyes closed, hand resting on the tile above the old silver temperature control knob, the water left to pound on the back of his neck and shoulders, chasing away the freeze that had sunk into every bone. Bliss. It stole from him all awareness of where he was, who he was with… as breathing became regular once more. Time fell away as his forehead came forward to rest on the back of his hand, sleep almost finding him as he stood there. Silver blinked open as the heated waters became lukewarm, losing the stock from the hot water tank. Frown spoke his disapproval as he quickly picked up the soap and washed the city and sea from his skin, shampoo foaming over his head, the grease washing away to highlight the gray wings at his temples. Just as the water turned cold he snapped the valve off, sliding the curtain open to reach for the towel that was now missing. Blink was pronounced as he suddenly was aware again of where he was and who was in the other room. Ears flushed as wet feet stepped out of the shower, the cabinet in the wall opened to grab another towel, the first one discarded when he realized he had no clothes to change into and it was not long enough to properly wrap around his hips. Shit…. Word was soft under his breath as he rummaged for a bigger one. Finally managing to get one that tucked modestly around his hips and hung to his knees. The smaller towel was scratched over his curls to discourage the moisture from clinging before he wiped the fogged mirror with it, frowning at his own reflection. He needed some sun, he hadn't gone rock climbing or sailing in a while and it showed in his vampire complexion. Opening the mirrored cabinet he used the deodorant and mouthwash before approaching the door with his wet jeans in hand, standing for what seemed an eternity with a hand on the doorknob. Ah fuck it. Knob turned and the door was pushed open, the silver timidly peeking around the corner of the door at her. Unsure what to say now.
  12. Gray eyes watched the wet woman vanish below deck from his perch on the dock tying off Sam's hull. It took him a moment to realize he had been staring, even if it had been of the back of her head, eyes averting to the other bay where their companion seemed content to float and occasionally spray a douse of air and water upward. It felt strange. To be here with another person. These voyages had always been alone, his solace, a way of escaping the reality that had become his nearly ten years before. As she re-emerged and hit the dock, a glint of a smile crossed his lips as he tried not to watch her sway and wobble arms out. For a land-lubber the sudden stop of violent sways could almost feel unnatural as the muscles still felt the need to fight for direction. For him it was as natural as breathing to adapt between the two extremes. He didn’t miss the sheepish smile which only made him move gray orbs more intently at the rope he was tying off. It felt strange…. He relaxed when she vanished into the upstairs loft. He slept up there when it was really cold but most of the time found he was more at home tucked into cabin with the hull swaying gently under him. “Going to get this started and try a shower… warm up. I'd ask if you needed help, but you seem to have it...” He startled at the voice floating down from the loft. Staring up at the open door he could see the faint amber glow inside of the small bulb that was hooked up to the main switch, her shadow passing by. "No worries… I got it down here. Just need to… you know… put the boat to bed….so to speak." Throat cleared after the stilted speech, staring at Sam who was already "put to bed". Shower did sound good. He only now noticed he was soaked through to the bone and the longer he stood still the colder his skin under the dripping clothes got. "oh… hot water might take a bit…. got solar panels running an instant tankless but hasn’t been on for a while so…. ya… let me know if it doesn’t warm up." He waited until the water was running a while. When she said nothing he assumed the tankless kicked in and she was enjoying a hot shower. Now he had a dilemma. He could wait and then go take a shower after her, hoping the solar panels had enough juice to keep the tankless going that long… or he could just call it and wriggle his cold ass out of his clothes and into some dry ones and warm up over time. A shower meant going up there…. with her…. As confident as he was sailing his vessel, was as painfully awkward he was now at the concept of a naked wet woman now upstairs. It had been a long time…….. a really long time. Into dry clothes it was. Wet sweatshirt was slopped over his head, tossed on the rail of the dock to drip dry as he slid the soaked shoes off his bare feet and started to unbuckle his pants. He didn’t want to drag his soaked clothes down into the dry cabin of the boat and she was upstairs in a shower anyway so he was….safe. As the zipper went down a stream of swears erupted upstairs. Gray orbs were huge. She was scalded…fell through a rotted floor…bit by a wild animal that had taken up residence… what?!? Bare feet slapped the deck boards making the stairs in about a half second before he sprinted up them three at a time, the bathroom door flung open, slapping the wall with an atrocious clap. Cold air flooded the steam filled room as he stood half naked in the doorway. "WHAT'S WRONG? YOU OK?!?" Instantly his lips clamped shut as he was staring at her naked figure through the clear curtain. He had never considered the need to swap it out, modesty wasn’t something he considered since he came here alone. Ears blistered crimson as he snapped around, back to her. "So sorry.. I…I heard you swearing… worried that… you know…something….. damn… sorry." Swallow was like dead weight down his throat as he stepped a dripping foot out of the bathroom, hand reaching to gently pull the abused door closed behind him with another soft "sorry". He quickly followed his trail of wet footprints back out of the loft and back down the stairs, the crimson flooding down to the lobes before staining down his neck and prickling goose bumps over frozen skin. He couldn’t un-see what he had seen, and he felt guilty that he wasn’t sure he wanted to.
  13. [maree]…not me…. there's nothing to be afraid of.[/maree] Faint smile tickled the edges of his lips. Not that he didn’t believe she meant it… but something always tickled the dark corners of the psyche… he too was "not afraid of anything"… but the dark corners hid… things. An almost comfortable silence fell over them. The wilder the ride got, the calmer the doctor seemed to become. Smile licked upward each time their companion surfaced in the violent waves to blast water against the side of Sam's hull. Winds were cold and chaotic but in their favor, Ocean City coming up in a little under ninety minutes. As the boat fought him to move inland, the winds began to pitch them both left and right as much as up and down, it would tear them apart. Hands left the wheel as feet leapt out of the captain's cabin onto the thin side deck, body automatically pitching to keep upright like a bobble doll that could not be knocked off its seat. A feline that could not be knocked from its perch. Lock on the main mast was wrestled downward, the rope releasing to send the massive sail furling wild and loose in the wind as he muscled it down to the boom, latching the flapping wet whip to the large horizontal post, a welt rising on his cheek where it got him before he got it. Fingers scratched at the shadow on his cheek before he hopped back down into the captain cabin to stand behind the second wheel, key turned to ignite the engine and head inland on gas power. There used to be a large white flag on the front of the boat garage for nights just like this, when it would be nearly impossible to spot it in the churning storm. But like a migrating animal he seemed to have an internal homing beacon that drove him right to it. Under the wheel he unlocked the glove compartment and hoped the solar panels had enough sun in the last few days to have some juice in the batteries as he pulled out a large remote and pointed it to the shadowy coast. Nothing. That would be a pain in the ass, docking beside the garage and wrangling the two story glass garage door by hand. He did that when he originally found the place until he installed the solar panels to the single door he used. Hopefully it was just the storm blocking the signal until he got closer. As the boat pitched less in the protected waters of the inlet he tried again, relieved when a faint little light turned on betraying the door was sliding upward. The garage was at the base of a ridiculously decadent mansion. He never went up to the house, he had picked the spot because it was the only boat garage that he could literally drive Sam into without pulling down the mast. (garage) One side of the garage had an apartment so there was no need to go to the house anyway. Besides, he usually stayed on Sam when he docked. The garage still had some of the original "toys". A few were cannibalized for parts. He had made good use of the find. As he put the beast gently into reverse to slow their movement he chuckled at the whale making itself at home in the bay next door having swum under the glass garage door. The water was deep enough that it seemed content to hang out outside of the violent waters. Likely the first peace it had in weeks. Engine died as he quickly jumped off the deck to the center dock, pulling Sam's tie off until it gently hit the bumper on the dock before the small garage door light flicked off to bathe them in darkness. Makeshift switch on the wall was hit, a small light on the side wall flickering on, a jimmy-rig to his solar panels. He blinked at her in the soft dim light as though he had forgotten she was there. Fingers scratched the back of his head as the other gestured up the stairs near him. [declan]…. apartment upstairs… has working water and a good little stove heater. I keep a stack of wood next to it all the time.[/declan] It was a clean loft, the bathroom the only separate room as the bed looked out a wall of windows, kitchenette in a corner of the large room. He kept the loft tidy and stocked with canned goods in case he ever had to stay more than a single night. Smile was a bit lopsided as he walked to the back of the hull to tie off the back against the dock, peppered curls shaking to spray a bit of the ocean waters from the locks.
  14. Gray eyes closed against the spray of frigid winds. A serenity that didn’t exist in his life in New York settling over him. [maree]Why do you do it then?[/maree] [declan]huh?...[/declan] Eyes opened to blink at her through the moist air. [maree] I hear the board talking, janitors are invisible. I know people bother you there, nurses seem to have a bullseye on my forehead because I have keys to everything. The hours are exhausting. I get why Bo does it, he can’t leave a problem unsolved… but you, why don’t you just leave? There has to be somewhere better that will appreciate? [/maree] Head shook with a ghost of a smile. [declan]…where? New York is the largest working hospital still in North America. Has the largest concentrated population. Has the most people in need. The hardest cases that no one else can solve………..or touch.[/declan] Wheel spun a half turn as he watched the sky a moment, correcting to keep them from bashing into rocky waters but not carried by the torrential ocean waters out to sea. It was an artful skill to sail stormed waters. Skill and a bit of insanity as he spoke of being fired and looking for a place to be a hermit. [maree]Why did you come back to New York then?[/maree] [declan]…perhaps I am like your brother in this. I couldn’t leave it alone.[/declan] Smile came with a half shrug as he watched her ponder a moment. It was strange to be on ocean waters with a companion again. A twinge of guilt threatened to disrupt his harmony but it vanished with the flow of the bow over a twenty foot wave, the crash towards the bottom sending the shiver right down to his toes. Calm waters anyone could enjoy. This…. this chaotic violence… this was all his. [maree] It’s good there are people in the world like you that will help us. It’s dangerous. The people who helped me after I almost died, instead died because of me. They knew the risks, and they took me in anyway .[/maree] He was silent a while. Watching the dark waters and the sky whose stars got brighter and brighter the further from civilization they got. [declan]….fear drives everything these days……..[/declan] Frown lingered over the brow, wet ears flicking backwards to send thick droplets horizontally projected only to saturate once more. [declan]……fear….. and pain.[/declan] Chilled fingers adjusted the wheel, head shaking gently. [declan]….most use both as a shield, an excuse to…….to ignore.[/declan] He had once too. In the beginning. The world had taken her from him and he could not have cared less whom he ignored and let perish in the wake. But her encouraging words from the past and his true nature haunted his apathy. So it had been short lived, which is why he ended up in New York, at the last vestige of dense humanity. Where he would always be up to his eyes in blood and forever loathed for his indifference for whom he saved. Eyes hit the sky and then the coastline. [declan]…couple more hours we will make Ocean City…. no one there anymore but good place to dock a bit for sleep. Can normally just sail through the night and not go too far off course…. but not in winter waters, have to steer the whole time.[/declan] He had cleaned up a boat house there from some old mansion, big enough to literally park Sam all the way inside.
  15. [maree] I never remember you not being there, in the ER I mean. [/maree] Snorted laugh was soft and perhaps a bit bitter as he let the wheel spin right for the briefest moment. [declan].. its usually when I am put on a forced leave.[/declan] Hand rubbed the back of his neck as he added quietly. [declan]…doesn’t happen as often as it used to. They know better.[/declan] He was just too damn good. When they promised the puffed up elitists the best surgeon… they had to call him. That meant they learned to put up with his idiosyncrasies, including the fact that they would have to serve the altered in the hospital or he would walk. [maree] How in the world could you find a place like this on accident?[/maree] Smile was a bit distant in the dark as he adjusted the wheel slightly left knowing they needed to be a bit further into the ocean waters to avoid the jagged coast lines. Damp lashes flicked up to map the stars once more, a faint blue hue forming over his lips and the tips of the elongated ears as they cut through the freezing temperatures. It would be a good eight hour sail before they felt a noticeable rise in temperature. [declan]… it wasn’t entirely by accident.[/declan] Hip rested against the side of the vessel as the right hand remained on the wheel, lightly correcting each time the damp lashes sought the sky and the boat crashed down over a storm filled wave. [declan]……another lifetime ago… I vacationed down there once.[/declan] A ghost passed over his features before his shoulder lifted, head tilting to rub his ear against the coat as if brushing it away. [declan]…then got fired about…. guess was six years ago now….before you worked there.[/declan] Fingers lifted to sheepishly scratch in his too long hair. [declan]…. I might have disagreed with another surgeon on how he was about to handle a delicate operation on an altered kid…. and he might have ended up with a scalpel through his hand.[/declan] Truth was a bit darker. The surgeon was about to ensure the altered child didn’t wake up from the surgery. Bunch of racist skinheads had taken over the New York hospital from the beginning. Shrug came with a bit of a lopsided grin. [declan]…so they fired me and I left town. Wasn’t really planning to come back. Went south and spent about four months looking for a good place to become a hermit. Found this place.[/declan]