She was blissfully quiet at first – the stunner blast that rendered her unconscious keeping her that way for a short while as they were both transferred to the infirmary. His guts still twisted at the thought of having to shoot her, even if it was with a stunner, and even if it were to save his own sorry ass from being shot. It was something that would stay with him for a long time.
Carson pulled the privacy curtain as he changed her out of her uniform and into scrubs, leaving John to plonk himself on the next bed nursing a massive headache. His vision was still blurry, his co-ordination off and his movements sluggish, but still, he could move under his own power, more or less. He could hear the soft russle of clothing being changed and a white sheet being drawn halfway up her body, then being covered with a soft light green blanket that graced most of the beds in the infirmary. Who'd picked that color anyway?
The sound of the curtain being drawn back brought his musings back to his boss, now in white scrubs and sequestered under a plethora of monitering equipment. She seemed so….peaceful now, her features relaxed in the pseudo sleep, her chest rising and falling in a steady and even rhythm.
Dr Becket drifted into his field of vision, cutting off his view of Elizabeth as he checked the Lt Col over, only releasing his wrist restraints once he was sure 'Thalan' had left completely and they weren't being had… again.
" I'd like to keep you overnight Colonel…just to make sure" Carson explained, hooking up John to a similar set of monitoring equipment and aligning the screens so he could easily see them. Within moments the steady chirrup of his heartbeat echoed from the moniter, a tiny heart symbol flashing on the screen in time with the muscle deep within his chest.
" How is she?" John asked, not bothered about his own wellbeing. He glanced over at Elizabeth again, her features still peaceful as she breathed in slowly and deeply.
" Unconscious… at least for now. Going by what you went through I think it's not going to be pleasant when this alien consciousness leaves her" Carson explained with a grimace. John had explained excruciating pain, convulsions and other unpleasantries while they were being stretchered to the infirmary. If Thalan was weaker than Phebus to start off with, he didn't hold any great hopes for the experience being at all pleasant for the cities leader.
The lights in the infirmary dimmed as soon as the new patients were settled, allowing them to rest in somewhat relative comfort. John tried to stay awake, fighting the comforting lull of sleep as it beckoned him with seductive arms. He was concerned about Elizabeth, knowing that when she woke up she would go through hell. Maybe she would be lucky and 'Phebus' would leave while she was still unconscious. That thought comforted him somewhat, giving him a small glimmer of hope that his boss would be spared the pain and suffering he had be forced to endure. His eyes slipped closed some time later against his bidding.
The sound of a gut wrenching scream startled him from his sleep, causing an immediate dump of adrenaline into his system. His eyes snapped open, taking a moment to gather his bearings before realizing he was in the infirmary, and the person in the bed next to him was writhing against a number of burly orderlies trying to restrain her. Her screams continued, pain filled, angst ridden and utterly heartwrenching.
" For God's sake Doc.. can't you sedate her?" John questioned, jumping out of bed and stumbling over to Elizabeth's bed, ignoring the monitors that wailed as he ripped their contacts off his body as he did so. There was no room anywhere but the foot of her bed so he stood there awkwardly, wanting to help but knowing he would only be interfering. The orderlies struggled to get her flailing limbs into the padded restraints that would keep her from hurting herself, and anyone trying to help her. Carson kept his eyes flicking between her monitors and his own team, his brilliant mind working through a number of possible treatments that would ease her suffering. Her heart was racing, her blood pressure spiking dangerously, and her brain activity almost off the scale.
" I can't… her vitals are too unstable" The Scottish doctor replied, setting the needle filled with a powerful sedative back on the tray beside him.
Elizabeth seemed to quieten for a moment, giving the orderlies time to tighten her restraints and step away from the bed. Sweat sheeted over her now trembling body and John couldn't resist the urge to grab a nearby washer, stepping up opposite Carson near the head of her bed. He dipped the cloth in a bowl of cool water, dragging it across her warm forehead. She seemed to quieten a little further under his touch, giving him a glimmer of hope that they may have seen the worst of it.
She writhed again, a strangled cry wrenched from her straining throat as her muscles contracted against her will. John's heart dropped, the knot in his stomach growing tighter and tighter with each struggle of her body. He continued to cool her forehead, trying to offer comfort in any way possible to ease her suffering. This was torture. More than any session with an enemy could be.
Carson remained close, keeping an eye on her vital signs as they rose and settled with each episode. John didn't move the entire time from her bedside. One hand always sponging down her face, the other sometimes holding her clenching hand, sometime resting comfortably on her straining shoulder. The doctor could see the concern written all over Johns body, and empathized.
" Come on Elizabeth, you can do this" John whispered as her body shook from another convulsion, her back arching from the bed as far as the restraints would allow. She collapsed down as her muscles released their contraction, her cries now only a series of torturous whimpers.
Dr Beckett rerouted her monitors to his desk to give the two a little privacy, having a fairly good idea that the worst may now be over. Her body was weakening, already stretched beyond its limits by both the alien consciousness, and now it trying to keep alive within her. Thankfully it seemed that 'Phebus' was actually 'leaving' Elizabeth's body, and now it appeared the last lingering remnants were all that were left. He could still hear her whimpers from his office, and his gut wrenched with each of them knowing he couldn't do much to help. When her vitals stablised, then yes.. he could do something. Until then, all they could do was hope she pulled through this.
Elizabeth quietened, her strangled whimpers ceasing for a moment even as her brow furrowed. Her eyes flickered open for a moment, confusion evident within their green depths.
" John?" She whispered, her voice hoarse from the screaming… " What…?"
He continued to sponge her forehead, and she closed her eyes for a moment, relishing the cool contact of the wet cloth. She'd long ago kicked the blankets and sheets off the bed, her scrubs soaked in sweat from her body's struggles.
" You were inhabited by an alien consciousness.. I think she just finished… leaving" John explained, his free hand finding hers and giving it a comforting squeeze.
She didn't reply, merely nodding her head, her eyes remaining closed. She took comfort in his presence, it reassured her that everything was going to be alight. He grounded her, calmed her. A short time later her hitched breathing calmed to its regular slow even rhythm, her body finally relaxing totally as a deep sleep claimed her.
Dr Becket stopped by a short time later, ordering John to bed now that Elizabeth was in no danger. Her drew the curtain and called for some orderlies, changing the bedclothes on her bed and settling her into a new set of scrubs. He administered a sedative, one that would keep her asleep for a good number of hours to allow her body to heal. He knew tomorrow she was going to hurt like hell.
He drew back the curtain and glanced over at John's bed, seeing the other man slumbering peacefully. Casting a quick glance to see both patients resting comfortably, the doctor left for the morning, giving a quick handover to the duty doctor before heading back to his quarters to vanquish Elizabeth's screams from him mind.
John awoke the next morning to the steady beeping from two sets of monitors. His eyes flickered open to reveal the ceiling of the infirmary and the memory of the previous nights events crashed into his mind. His guts twisted involuntarily as he cautiously glanced to his left, relief washing over him as he saw Elizabeth resting peacefully. With a grin he couldn't keep hidden he reached over to her nightstand and swiped her PDA that someone had pulled from one of the pockets of her uniform. Smirking he pulled up solitaire and began to play.
Incoherent mumblings from the bed next to him tore his attention away from the 5th game in a row he was about to win.
" Good Morning" He greeted the sleepy figure.
" Good Morning" She replied, the confusion in her eyes again as she tried to remember what had happened.
" What's her name sure hung in there" John said with a smirk, not turning his attention away from his game.
" When did she…?" Elizabeth asked hesitatingly, having only fleeting memories of the entire ordeal.
" Some time in the middle of the night… kicking and screaming" John answered, his eyes still fixed on her PDA. He neglected to mention it was actually her kicking and screaming. She didn't need to know all the details, she didn't need to know he'd stayed up through the entire ordeal trying to comfort her, or how he still blamed himself for the entire ordeal, or that watching her writhing in agony was singularly the worst thing he had ever been forced to experience.
She didn't need to know.