(1937-12-26) The Fox Takes On the Mouse’s Curse
Details for The Fox Takes On the Mouse’s Curse
Summary: After a particularly bad dizzy spell, Rhyeline is brought in by Sophia for a visit with the healers at St. Mungo's. Healer Jonothan is not available, giving Keenan the opportunity to become aquianted with and interested in the little mouse's case. At last, he convinces her to accept more intensive treatment, in the hopes that a lasting cure might be discovered.
Date: Wednesday, December 26, 1937
Location: Spell Damage Ward, St Mungo's

It is a winter morning. The weather is cold and snowing.

Spell Damage

This area of the hospital has been set up for a double purpose. At the beginning of the ward are multiple stations ment to deal with transitory cases that only need the attention of Medi-wizards or Healers for a few hours. These stations have a small adjustable bed and a rolling chair and a stand with all the necessary tools to deal with any kind of temporary damage caused by misfiring or misused spells. The back of the ward has been designed to resemble a boarding house with individual rooms for each patient. These rooms are separated from the primary ward by a set of double doors securely locked by multiple charms. Over the doors a large wooden signs reads:

"Spells Damage Ward. Long Term Care Wing."

During the night this ward is illuminated by the ever present light globes floating around the ceiling.

The morning after Christmas found Rhyeline wandering as usual through the rows of shelves in Sophia’s rare book shop, like a child lost in a wondrous forest. But then she began to sway. Placing a hand over her chest, she clung to the shelf with her other. The little one’s pulse was faint and fluttering. Despite her protests and insistence that it would pass, that she was alright, Sophia decided to take Rhyeline to St. Mungos immediately.

Sophia was fortunate to be there when the tiny witch collapsed, and so she took the responsibility of getting her to St. Mungo's. Indeed, there is a loud crack as the two women apparate into the main lobby of the hospital.

As the two check in at the main desk, the name of Rhyeline Diderot is familiar here, and they're directed to the Spell Damage Ward where a nurse will set them in a room, with Rhyeline in the bed, pillows up, because there are only two other chairs. One for Sophie, and one for the healer that walks in a moment or two later.
Rhye might have been expecting the dark haired healer that usually tends her, but instead, the green eyes that gaze at her chart, then raise to look over her belong to a slightly older, taller, ginger haired Healer. "Miss Diderot," he greets with a firm voice that somehow carries a tinge of amiability and concern. "It appears ye've had a little spell again today, aye?"

Rhyeline rests a bit against Sophia, still affected by the dizziness despite her reassurances to the contrary. As she is led into the room in the Spell Damage Ward, the little one eyes the bed as if the sheets might suddenly envelope her, drag her in and gobble her up. At the unfamiliar healer’s voice, Rhyeline blinks and lifts her dark, cautious stare to his careworn features. “Just a bit of dizziness. I’m alright,” she murmurs in a voice as soft as one would expect by looking at her.

Sophia shakes her head. "No, dear. I checked your pulse, and it was very faint. Fainter than I've ever felt it before." As Keenan enters, she smiles politely at the healer, and settles into the second chair, although not without gently squeezing one of Rhyeline's hands.

There's a moment when Keenan's eyes on Rhyeline's chart pause, then he looks over at Sophie's words. Placing the notes gently on the end of the bed he approaches the patient, and reaches down for her wrist. As he takes her pulse, the green studies the darker gaze, "if ye please, Miss Diderot, can ye follow ma finger with yer eyes? An' only yer eyes. Please don't move your head." As he moves his finger left, right, up and down and finally towards her nose, he watches her eyes, her pupils, and then finally releases her wrist.

Rhyeline keeps close to Sophia, clinging to her hand like a scared child. The woman will feel how her hand tightens when the man so much as takes her wrist. In silence, she watches as he takes her pulse. Asked to follow his finger with her eyes, she obeys. There is much fatigue in her gaze. Standing is extremely difficult, but her will is strong. Her attention is keen as well, not wavering as keeps it fixed intently upon his finger. The little one seems quite anxious to prove she is in good health. Wrist released, she moves it to her side where she clings a bit to the fabric of her skirt.

Sophia sighs, as Rhyeline clings to her hand, and tries her best to smile reassuringly to the girl. "It's going to be all right, dear. Just try to relax."

There are two dimples to be seen in the scruff of the healer's cheeks as he gives Rhyeline a tiny smile. "Miss Diderot, please have a seat before ye fall over. This may take a little time, but I'll try nae ta keep ye longer than I have tae, aye?" He glances to Sophie. "Ye're able tae stay for a little so ye can take her home? I'd rather she nae left on her own tae faint on the front steps provin' tae me she's strong enough ta leave." At the last bit he gives Rhyeline a friendly wink.

Told to sit down, Rhyeline first looks for a third chair. But no. Only the bed is left for her. It’s clear she doesn’t care for that. It takes a moment, but at last she steps back just a bit, and sits on the very edge, hands folded in her lap. Once more, she lifts her dark, cautious stare and watches the man.

Although Keenan's posture is quite relaxed, at ease in his own environment, his eyes are keen as he gazes at Rhyeline. Standing, he lifts his wand and swishes it around a circle, letting it come to rest in front of Rhyeline. With his hands loosely clasped on his wand, he moves to lean against the bed next to her, and gesture towards the chair. "Please, be my guest," he tells her quietly.

Rhyeline’s dark gaze flickers from the healer’s face to the chair before her. With great care, she pushes herself up and transfers herself to the chair. Yes, the girl seems much less like she thinks she’s about to be swallowed alive by the furniture now. She gives a small nod of thanks, but when she does, her hands tighten upon the armrests of the chair, as if her whole world had started spinning again.

With that same, small, smile of goodwill, Keenan looks down on Rhyeline. "Now, Miss Diderot, I am not completely unfamiliar with yer case. Even though Healer Greengrass has been in charge of yer care, it's been of interest to many of us healers. I should warn ye, though…" he sets his wand aside and clasps his hands in front of him. "Not only have I been a Healer for quite awhile, I also have four younger brothers an' sisters, and almost as many nieces and nephews. I am fairly adept at knowin' when someone's tryin' tae pull tha wool over ma eyes. An' right now, ye're tryin' tae make me think that this has been nothin' tae worry about so that ye can leave. Even though just gettin' up an' switchin' chairs made ye a little dizzy again." His voice is gentle, rather than accusatory.

He straightens a little. "I'm thinkin' as ye've had a few more visits, that perhaps tha potion ye're takin' could be modified. I have a colleague that I collaborate with often in Potions and Plant Healing. If ye're willin', I would like tae consult with her on yer case, an' with Healer Greengrass, an' see if we can improve on tha potion ye're takin' tae try an' isolate yer symptons a little more. Treat them more directly, an' that way ye won't be havin' yer friends bring ye back here quite so much. What do ye, think, then?"

Rhyeline rests back in her chair as she listens. When he tells her he understands what she is up to, she lowers her gaze to her knees. As he mentions the possibility of collaborating with other healers, the girl peeks back up at him. At last, she murmurs, “I would appreciate that. I’d like it very much to- to not have to trouble you here so often.”

Keenan nods once. "I think that if ye've managed tae keep goin' with yer usual life outside of Mungo's for this long, that things might not be quite as dire as we've thought. Perhaps if we treat yer symptoms more aggressively, we can isolate tha spell, an' perhaps contain in such a manner as tae keep ye quite alive. For quite awhile." He picks up his wand. "It is nae a trouble tae us, Miss Diderot." The fingers of both hands lace loosely around the grip and it again rests in his lap in front of him. "But, I think, it is a trouble tae yerself. Am I wrong?"

The edge of nervousness in Rhyeline’s wary stare seems to fade as Keenan mentions that things may not be as dire as they thought. But when asked if the curse is a trouble to her, she hesitates before shaking her head just a bit. “No, sir. I’ve been able to continue my work as before. It just makes me a bit tired, but I don’t let it affect me.”

Keenan smiles again. "I meant comin' here, Miss Diderot," he tells her gently. "These are nae potions that ye can drink an' walk out. Ye'll need tae stay here fer an hour or so each treatment." He watches her as he makes this pronouncement.

Rhyeline’s hands tighten a bit on the arms of her chair, but her features remain smooth and neutral. For a time she considers his words and at last she murmurs, “But I would have to come in less frequently? If- if you developed new potions?”

Keenan shakes his head slowly. "I canna guarantee that, Miss. Tha idea is fer us tae get ye better as soon as possible. I may need tae have ye come in here tae consult with ye on yer condition, an' run some tests of ma own tae see how tha treatments are workin' an' what tha next step may be." He tips his head tae tha side, and prods. "Is this goin' tae be a problem fer ye, Miss Diderot?"

Rhyeline folds her arms across her belly, hugging herself just a bit as the healer describes what an intensified treatment would entail. “Does it- does it have to be ‘here’? Melania Black. She- said- that she wanted to work with my healers to find a cure. Perhaps- perhaps in her Apothecary?”

Keenan nods. "Most of it, yes. I am not familiar with Ms Black's Apothecary, as I usually use ma sister's if I have any need o' supplies." He shakes his head. "Healer MacCurry an' I would have tae go over Ms. Black's credentials before we could collaborate with her, or feel comfortable performing treatments at her establishment." He pauses and watches Rhyeline as he writes a prescription and beckons to a nurse at the door, who takes it away to be filled. "I have tae say, before ye get any hopes up, that it is highly unlikely that we would treat at any such establishment."

Rhyeline bites her lower lip as she listens. As the nurse heads off, the girl lifts her gaze to him once more and murmurs in a soft, small voice. “Then- please… is there any way I could just- just continue as I have been? It- it might not be a cure but- I’ll be alright.”

Keenan slides down a little against the bed and brings himelf eye level with Rhyeline, and his voice drops slightly, become more stern. "Miss Diderot, you are not all right," he says, the tones of his normal accent dropping away slightly. "You /are/ dying if left as is. I would like to prevent that, if it is all the same to you. It is highly unconventional an' out of the ordinary to treat such a serious case outside of Mungo's. I suggest, in the interest of saving your life that we stop dancing around the subject, an' you tell me why you are trying to avoid coming to Mungo's, even at the cost of your life." He leans back and relaxes again, and his voice returns more to normal. "What d'ye say, Miss?"

Rhyeline bows her head but continues to watch the man as he draws close to speak with such seriousness. Told that she is in fact still dying, the girl blinks and looks a bit more scared, despite her efforts to keep her features smooth and unreadable. “I don’t- don’t want to be stuck here again. I- I would wake up and- and be told that weeks had slipped by. I’d fall asleep and then again, I’d wake up and my parents told me it had been nearly two months since I left Berlin.”

Keenan nods, and brings his arms up to cross loosely over his chest, now that they're getting somewhere. "Ye'll nae be sleepin' while ye're here," he tells her quietly. Underneath his robes his legs shift, and he crosses his ankles as he leans against the bed talking. "In fact, I'll need ye tae be awake an' answer questions. Ye will need tae lay on the bed, but…" he uncrosses the wand to wave it at the head of the bed so that it rises to a forty five degree angle. "But ye'll not need tae lay down." He turns back towards her and nods to the nurse bringing the tray in, containing two bottles. "Please drink these. One is the usual potion ye've been takin'. The other is tae lend strength tae tha muscles in yer heart. The idea is fer ye tae not get stuck in here again… an' if ye keep goin' as ye have, ye stand more chance of that than if ye come in fer regular treatments. Do ye understand this?" Again there's that gentle prod, and that gaze assessing her responses, although it's tinged with concern for her decision.

There is more to Rhyeline’s apprehension than her initial experience as a patient in the long-term care ward. However when he reassures her that she won’t be put to sleep once more there, it seems to calm her a bit at least. Folding her hands once more in her lap, she gazes at the potions and listens closely to his words. Peeking up at him, she nods. “Yes, sir. I will come in as you request for- for the additional treatments.”

Keenan gives a smile and nods. He moves to make his notations to her charts, and then straightens them. He shuffles a page and takes another look at it, then puts them back in order. "All right, then, I'll leave ye with tha nurse, tae make sure ye take yer potions, an' then ye an' yer friend can go on home. I will leave an order at MacDiarmada Apothecary fer ye. Somethin'tae take when ye get yer dizzy spells. They will help, buy ye still need tae let me know ye've had them. If ye're feelin' all right an' not fallin' over, then at least send me an owl tae et me know, it's important information tae keep track of in tryin' tae treat yer illness." He stands up with the papers returned to their folder, and gives a bow of his head. "Good day Miss Diderot."
With that, the ginger haired healer gives one last smile, stands, and walks towards the door. He taps the folder on the doorway, and turns back. "Miss Diderot, I was here on tha day o'tha quarantine. It was four days before I could return tae work after tha things that happened, an' that I saw." He gives her a slight nod, and then he leaves.

Rhyeline gives a subtle, obedient nod at each one of his instructions. When at last he stands to leave, the little one murmurs in reply, “Good day, sir. Thank you.” Then she rests back in her chair, waiting for him to leave. His words when he turns back seem to catch her off guard. An unmistakable haunted shadow appears in the young one’s eyes. She remains perfectly still, watching him, until he turns and leaves.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License