With her routine disrupted and having spent a while confined to her bed, Sophie’s track of time had slipped. It might have been four days since the shooting, or it may have been seven. With the rad-shielded headphones on she at least could be certain that she’d listened to the symphonic metal album currently playing eight times, even if she had drifted off during three of those.
“Miss Reynolds?” A medical gynoid asked. It was the medical Vigilant that had brought her gifts, with the black and blonde-striped hair. She had been in several times since, on some of those occasions her eyes lacked the vibrant green colour. When that was gone, so was the more animated facial movements and the personable nature. Now, with her eyes bright, her expression was one of concern.
Peeling the headphones off with one hand, Sophie flashed her a smile. “Hi again, is everything okay?”
“I was going to ask you that question. You are holding your wound, are you in pain?”
“Oh! Uh, no, actually. It feels better when I hold it there.” The teenager replied, glancing down to where her hand had slid under the paper top she had changed into that morning.
The gynoid drew a medical trolley closer. “May I take a look? Your dressings are due to be changed soon anyway.”
“Sure… um, what do I call you? Other than Santa.”
With a soft chuckle, the robot in the black and white leotard gloved up and peeled back the outer layer of the bandage. “Alice will do, Miss Reynolds.” With skilled hands Alice discarded the previous dressing into the hazardous material bucket attached to the trolley and started to clean the wound.
“Call me Sophie.” She said, trying not to wince too much. “You don’t look much like an Alice to me. More like a Kaitlyn, or a Paige. Or an Avril!”
“I picked Alice at random. While I do have a designation, it is safer that you do not know it.” Alice pursed her lips as she peered at the wound. “You are healing quicker than expected. There has been a marked improvement since this morning in the qualities of your wound. Reductions in redness, size, and the drainage quality.” On noting the look of surprise, Alice pointed at her head. “Vigilants share medical data to keep up to date on a patient’s treatment.”
“That’s a good thing though, right?” Sophie quickly asked.
“Yes, though… please, pass me your hand.” With the pale arm brought into distance, Alice swiftly sanitized the hand and rolled a blue glove over it. “I want you to hold your hand over your wound, at a slight distance.”
Doing as commanded, Sophie watched the gynoid observe intently.
“All right,” Alice picked up one of the small radiator monitors and held it near, “I want you to focus on your hand. How does it feel?”
Sophie mused for a moment. “… Warm. A bit tingly.”
Nodding, Alice grabbed a small torch from the trolley to shine on the wound. “Focus on that warmth, and make it warmer.”
“I’ll try. I’m not a space heater, so I don’t have a temperature contro-ooh!” Sophie’s body jolted a little. “That actually feels warmer. Still tingly, too.”
“Fascinating.” Alice spoke in hushed tones. “This is-”
The doors to the medical room rushed open as Teknight strode in, flanked by someone in a dark containment suit similar to the one she wore on the mission to Eighth Creek Nuclear Plant. “Step away from the patient and identify yourself!” The hero demanded, a gauntlet raised. The man in the suit grabbed a spare IV stand to brandish in Alice’s direction.
“Oh put that down, Bradley,” Alice huffed in the direction of the man before glancing to the hero. “And you? Stop charging your weapon and come take a look at this… Doctor.”
Both came to a stop, exchanging visor-concealed looks. It was Doctor Spiner who spoke first. “Who are you and what’s going on here?” He asked, still clutching the drip pole like a staff.
Sophie sat up with the biggest smile splitting her face, looking at her carer with her face full of wonder. “Brad! I’m healing!” She declared as Alice stepped to the side. Both doctors could clearly see the grey skin as it encroached on the area of her bullet wound. “I’m healing myself!”