First: Purchased: Negotiation
“We should heal you,” Mr. MacDiarmed tutted. If that was what he thought the face-in-hands meant, well, Leander wasn’t going to argue, that was for sure. “Lay down here, your head on – mmm, on Sylviane’s lap, your legs on mine.”
Orders. Leander could deal with that. More than that, as he put his head very carefully on Sylviane’s lap, very carefully, he sighed in what he realized was relief. Orders.
His legs went on Mr. MacDiarmed’s lap and he melted into the feeling of doing the right thing. It wasn’t something he’d felt all that much with the last few owners, he had to admit, but on the other hand – on the other hand, he hadn’t had it much with Mr. MacDiarmad, either. The man seemed to be way too reluctant to give Leander orders, other than the ones that were just the outlines to his life.
He hadn’t realized he’d actually said that out loud until Sylviane made an inquisitive mm? at him.
Mr. MacDiarmad was already moving his shirt and the bandages out of the way. He didn’t want to interrupt, so he just shook his head, a very little bit, not much at all. His head was on her lap. His head was on her lap. His –
“Stupid drugs,” he muttered weakly.
“Sylviane, if you can do a diagnostic, you can guide me?” Mr. MacDiarmed interrupted his thoughts. “Just do the glowbug thing, if you can. That worked out pretty well the last time.”
“Later,” Sylviane whispered, before she started her Working. Leander blinked as parts of his chest, where the gaping wound was leaking blood, began to start glowing blue and green with a little bit of red. It was an interesting look. It would be more interesting if it wasn’t going into a hole in his chest.
He gulped softly. “Large-caliber weapon,” he muttered. And it had gone closer than he’d thought to his heart and lungs. That could’ve been really bad. Like, that could have stopped him in his tracks. “Need armour. Or the Workings for armour,” he added.
“Shit, I should have – mmm. Another time.” Sylviane shook her head and brought her attention back to her Working. Slowly, Leander’s arms and his chest started glowing with a weird pinkish purple. “Okay, Dad. The magenta is the drugs still in his system. The green is tissue damage and the blue is blood vessel damage. Teal is muscle damage, just to make things confusing.” She was stroking Leander’s hair. It felt good. It felt amazing.
How much of that was the drugs? How much of it was –
“That’s good, just try to be still, just stay there,” Mr. MacDiarmad murmured.
He relaxed again into the feeling of his legs over his master’s lap, the way Sylviane was petting his hair, everything being knitted back together. When the last of the torn muscle fibers healed, the teal light vanishing in a puff, he sighed in relief. He wasn’t feeling all that much pain right now, but it felt like a weight lifted off of him.
And then the drugs started vanishing with a series of pinkish-purple flashes as his skin mended together until there was no scar. Mr. MacDiarmed frowned thoughtfully and muttered something else, some other Working, and a tiny black-and-indigo tattoo appeared where there would’ve been a bullet scar.
“A medal,” he murmured. “A reminder that you did something amazing and you did it well. You did something great, Leander, and I’m very grateful.” He patted Leander’s leg. “Stay here a little bit, mmm? We can watch some movie Sylviane and I and you can agree on, and you can relax for a bit. She’s safe here,” he added softly. “You can be off duty. You can even have a beer if you want. She’s safe.”
Leander sighed happily as the words eeked their way into his mind. She’s safe here. You can be off duty.
“Something fun,” he offered. “Nothing too dark?” He snorted. “No kidnappings.”
“I agree. All right, Netflix, let’s see what you’ve got. Okay, hrrm, how about Wild Wild West? It’s ridiculous, but it’s kind of fun.”
“As you wish.” His eyes were already closed. He should be paying attention; his Master was talking to him. On the other hand, Sylviane was combing her hands through his hair and he thought it might be the best feeling in the world. Were the drugs really out of his system? He was still feeling pretty loopy.
Mr. MacDiarmed patted his legs. “You’ve had a bit of a rough day,” he murmured sympathetically. “You’re not in any pain?”
“No, sir.” Leander opened his eyes, realizing that it was, maybe, an actual question and not an instruction. “I’m – I’m not in pain,” he confirmed slowly. “It feels nice – uh. That’s the-” He lifted one hand a very little bit. He still definitely didn’t want to move.
“The contact. The pretty girl – woman – petting your hair. It’s all right. I’ve been trying hard not to be too precious about her since she reached adulthood. Let’s watch a movie, shall we? You can move, you know, if you want to get settled so you can see.”
Leander considered that one slowly. Again, it had the sound of a Very Strong Suggestion, but he thought that maybe he was okay just turning his head.
He turned his head and decided that it felt good, better because it gave Sylviane more to pet that wasn’t, say, his face, and better because Mr. MacDiarmad started touching his legs.
It didn’t take him long at all to feel comfortable. In another situation, he might have thought to question it, but even with the drugs mostly out of his system, he felt like his inhibitions had been gently taken away.
He hoped they came back before he did something stupid, but right now –
“You did well,” Mr. MacDiarmid told him again.
Right now, Leander smiled stupidly and enjoyed the feeling of Sylviane’s hands in his hair and on his shoulders.