Level With Me JP Kassia/N'shen


Whatever the healers gave her to sleep had worked. The last thing she remembered was B’lin at her side after they made her take the sleeping stuff and then a healer was waking her in the morning to do her morning check-over. Unfortunately a night’s rest wasn’t enough to take away from all the pain and the sensitivity to her hearing and sight. She thought briefly of asking to be put back out, but she didn’t want to be unconscious that long and miss whatever was going on. Instead she laid there doing her best to ignore the pain and wait to see what the day would bring.

"Hey," came N'shen's voice once he finally managed to get in to see Kassia. It was a relief to see her breathing. And awake, he thought. If not, he would certainly feel rather guilty if he woke her… "How are you feeling?"

Kassia forced her eyes open, squinting against the light. Her headache was maybe a bit better, but she still wasn’t happy with the light. Her arm was casted and in a sling from the break. There were bruises everywhere. But she was alive and awake. Kassia could be happy about that.

She managed a very wan smile and held out her good hand. “I’ve been better,” she said. She had no reason to hide her condition from her Weyrleader and friend. “How are you? How’s True?”

N'shen gently squeezed her hand.

"I'm not hurt. Physically. And True has been better," he answered. He felt the survivor's guilt all the more keenly. He should have been there. His office had been there, but for that moment, he was not…

"He seems… He doesn't believe Larsin when he says he might see again. He's all despair right now. Blames himself for what happened, the usual." He offered a half-smile, as he was doing his best to put a tiny bit of cheer on the dire situation.

That earned him a frown. “He can’t see?” she asked, voice lowered. The implications if the populous at large knew would be very bad. 

"Ah…" N'shen shook his head and turned his gaze to the floor. "I didn't realize they hadn't told you. I didn't mean to give you anything else to worry about while you're trying to heal."

Kassia’s headache was building again, but she continued to squint at him as she frowned. “What else haven’t they told me? I was told that the explosion broke some eggs and that there were minor injuries to the dragons. Am I missing anything else?”

"There were minor injuries to the dragons, yes," said N'shen. "And a less than minor one, too," he added. "But as I said, Larsin thinks Truenoth's sight will return. I've been keeping him taken care of just like Larsin instructed. Foreth has no major injuries, but she would have told you, wouldn't she?"

N'shen had to learn how to lie better… Kassia did not need this. Obviously, or they would have told her. He had already put his foot in his mouth once. He had to make sure not to insert the other as well.

“I’d know if she was majorly injured, but the way she’s shielding I feel like there’s something else she hasn’t told me.” She started to struggle to sit up and then hissed out in pain as she jostled her arm. “Are the eggs all protected now? I mean, not that they weren’t before.”

"Truenoth and Talith have divided up the rest between them after Foreth took the two golds to the upper cavern," said N'shen. "You don't have to sit up. Here, I'll pull up a chair."

A moment later, N'shen was scooting up to the side of Kassia's bed.

Kassia laid back down. She knew she was going to get sick of just laying there really quickly.

“That’s...good,” she said. She could understand Foreth’s need to protect the gold eggs above all others. Luckily there were not one, but two, sires to watch over the remaining eggs. “I wish I could go see Foreth and the boys.”

"You'll see them soon enough. For now, you can rest here knowing that R'tal and I and your juniors are taking care of everything while you get better," said N'shen. He glanced at Kassia's belly. Had they told her anything else about how the baby was doing? Was it safe to ask?

“I know you all can keep things running,” Kassia said. “They said I should be out for no more than a sevenday or so. They said the concussion is the biggest issue. The broken arm and bumps and bruises are annoyances, really. And they said the baby should be fine, but I want to go to the dolphins once I can move around.”

N'shen was visibly relieved at the news that the baby was OK. And that Kassia would be up and about in seven days.

"Six times as long for your arm, I suspect?" he asked. "I suppose they can't give you the good stuff for the pain with a baby on the way, can they? Is there anything I can do?"

“Definitely a lot longer,” she said. “They’re being careful. At least they can give me the stuff to make me sleep when I can’t stand it any more. I just want you to keep me in the loop for everything. I can’t bare lying here not knowing what’s happening. I hope I’m out in time for the Hatching.”

"I'll come every day, if that's what you want," said N'shen. "I'll keep you up to speed." He could ask each of the others who were flying Fall and running the Weyr for their reports. Whatever they actually wanted Kassia to know.

“Thank you, N’shen,” she said, squeezing his hand. “I’m sorry that True was injured. Thank you for protecting the eggs.”

"None of this is your fault," said N'shen. "I, we… we did everything. Took every precaution. Or we thought we did. Whoever did this…" He sighed. "If it takes the rest of my life, I will see justice done."

“You and me both,” she said. She squeezed his hand again. “Can you get the healer? See if I can get some more pain stuff and then I’ll see you tomorrow?”

"Right away," said N'shen. He squeezed her hand back and stood. "I'll see you tomorrow. Rest well, my friend."