Healing for the Fallen

From the Story Arc: Cold Front

Previous Story in the Arc: Chaos by Madame Molotov (Wednesday, December 13, 2006)

Next Story in the Arc: No Justice by Cagey Bee (Wednesday, December 13, 2006)

(posted Wednesday, December 13, 2006)

The People’s Elf had sensed partway through her daily meditation that something was wrong. Despite being in nearly another state of existence, Gina was still able to feel the “real” world while in her trance, and it wasn’t long after coming out of it that she discovered what was wrong.

“Good evening comrades,” she broadcast, after watching the video of Bestial Boy’s death.

The voice of Waitron floated to her over the comm.: “We are holding a wake for Commissar Bestial Boy in Pocket D, Comrade.”

“I will be there immediately,” People’s Elf replied. As she activated the direct teleporter for Pocket D, she began to think of the video she had just watched. It had been almost surreal, as if she had been there during the fight. Several times she had instinctively raised her hands to cast a healing spell, but there was no one to cast it on.

The final moments were the hardest. Gina saw the look of panic on the Commissar’s face, his hindered leap, and finally, the flash. It hit her, hard. The People’s Elf was no stranger to fallen comrades, but it had been so long since it had happened, that she had nearly forgotten the pain. With her own skills, and Paragon City’s teleportation system, it had seemed that her allies were invincible, and Gina had gotten used to it.

This was the worst possible way to be reminded of their vulnerability.

She arrived in Pocket D, at the same time as Strela, and realized that the wake had been going on for quite some time. Barely ten members of the RPC remained, clustered around Isaac’s bar.

“…And Comrades Strela and Elf are here to join you,” Waitron said to John Murdock, who had just finished what appeared to be the latest of several drinks. He gave them each the smallest of greetings, over his shoulder, before paying his tab and leaving.

People’s Elf did not pay much attention to the conversation that Strela and Waitron had, since Strela had seemed to want it just between the two of them. Instead, she watched the rather large man at the other end of the bar mutter at the two shots he had just ordered.

“Are your drinks unsatisfactory?” she asked. Getting no response, she turned back to her fellow CCCP comrades, whose conversation now included Krasnaya Zvezda. Strela was trying to convince him of the benefits of a drink she hadn’t heard of: “Ahh, but you must make exception for prune juice. Builds strong body, makes mind sharp and life long.”

“I believe I will try this ‘prune juice,’” Gina said. Strela turned to Isaac.
“Look at them getting’ down on the dance floor. Now, what can I get you?”
“A glass of prune juice fro Comrade Gina,” she said. After receiving her drink, People’s Elf raised her glass in a toast to her fallen comrade.

“I believe it is a custom here to give a toast. I would like to give a toast to our fallen comrade, in the hopes that we carry on his legacy, and that he is never forgotten.”

“Da. To fallen comrades!” Strela replied. Even the large man who had appeared so unsatisfied with his drinks raised his glass to Bestial Boy.

Her comm beeped. There was a group in need of her healing.

“Comrades, there is a jewel thief to be apprehended in Galaxy City. I must take my leave... but I will fight with the memory of Bestial Boy in my heart.” To lose anyone, especially a friend loved and respected by so many, always hurt. She had never even met him in person, but the death of Zach Marlowe was something that Gina Salutaris would always remember.