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Complete These Ears That Hear

Discussion in 'Pandora Town' started by Baby, Jan 31, 2018.

  1. Baby

    Baby Baby Driver

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    JANUARY 1, Y7

    @Helen Magnus

    He didn't really want to go to that clinic. It had been Wednesday's suggestion and, honestly, it was a gamble whether or not a suggestion was really a suggestion for him. Still, he'd had a point. His ears were worse off than they'd been before when tinitus had been his only real issue. After the gunshots Buddy had inflicted, they'd never been the same despite hoping and hoping and hoping. So he'd just drowned out the faint buzz and the muffledness of it all with more music, though he had to wonder how much that was really helping.

    Speaking of which, he had his earbuds in his ears as he stepped into the clinic. He had heard about Dr. Helen Magnus, heard she was good, and he didn't want to go somewhere more official like the hospital given the things that he'd been up to. Wednesday would probably literally kill him if he got them all caught. Or just break his legs. There were no loved ones to kill, though, so at least there was that.

    He'd never been to a proper doctor or a proper clinic on his own, and Baby found himself lingering in the doorway with his lips pressed to a fine line as his body subtly moved with the sounds of Tequila in his ears.

     
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  2. Helen Magnus

    Helen Magnus Guest



    [​IMG]

    Helen had been working on something the past three days, refining the formula she had copied back from Hollow Earth to give to those brought back from death. Normally hours even days after death there was not saving you because of the damage done to your brain from the lack of oxygen. Luckily for her this protein supplement negated all that. Now if only there was a way to make it taste better. She had cringed the first time she had to drink it after her execution but if it would keep her from becoming a brain dead zombie then down the hatch. She was aware someone was coming in to see her today, damage to the eardrums seemed to be the issue and so she had a lab set aside to look into it with everything she would need. Helen wondered already if the small bone within the ear had actually been damaged, a loud enough sound could damage it and once that went you were screwed.

    Once the boy stepped into the clinic Helen had another scientist walk over to her and let her know he was here. She looked up from her work and pulled her slid from the microscope. "I'll get to clearing up this station afterwards, excuse me." Snapping off her gloves she threw them away in one of their hazard bins before walking out into the clinics entry room. Helen walked out with a smile on her face and offered her hand for a handshake. "Dr. Helen Magnus, a pleasure to meet you." She hadn't been too horribly surprised when he had contacted her for an appointment to look at his ears. Her first question had been asking herself why he wasn't just going to the hospital. Everything she had the hospital had but the reality might be he didn't have the money or he was avoiding government run facilities for whatever reason, more than likely legal. That didn't mean Helen would turn him away at the door, as a doctor she had made an oath to help whoever came to her.

    "You can follow me, I've got a room set aside for a base examination." She started down the back hall passing a few of the labs before pushing one of the doors open and holding it for him so he could let himself in. It had the best lighting in here, obviously not the standard doctors office. There was a metal table that looked like it had seen more dead bodies than living ones. A white sheet laid over the top so it wasn't quite as uncomfortable. There was a movable tray too lined with various instruments and tools, some looking far scarier than they actually were and others more familiar. Those typical tools used in just about every doctors office. Helen walked over to the sink and washed her hands before slipping on a clear pair of gloves. "You can take a seat there." She pointed to the table. "So, have you ever seen anyone about your hearing trouble in the past? And symptoms aside from the hearing lose? Past trauma that could have caused damage, this includes even being hit hard enough with a ball in your childhood."


     
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  3. Baby

    Baby Baby Driver

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    She seemed like she meant business. Kind, sure, but like she meant business. It wasn’t that Baby didn’t like doctors. It wasn’t like he’d never been to a doctor before, though it’d been a long time. Before prison, he’d spent more time in doctors offices for Joe, not for him. There’d just been this point where foster son was the one taking care of foster dad. Still, while it may not have been completely obvious that he was feeling a little nervous, especially given the earbuds he still had in his ears, it definitely didn’t seem like the most talkative person out there. Baby simply shook her hand and silently nodding his head befort trailing after her.

    His eyes wandered a bit. They couldn’t help but wander because Baby was a curious mind, but at the sound of Dr. Magnus’ voice, his eyes snapped back toward her. They walked into the examination room and he silently moved over to the table, hoisting himself up onto it with ease. He watched her even as his music played on his ears, but eventually, he lifted his hand and pulled out one earbud and then the other, reaching into his pocket to turn his zune player off. He hadn’t had any trouble understanding her, of course. Hearing her was an issue, but Baby had adapted to that problem a long time ago.

    “I had my ears looked at after an accident when I was a kid,” he started, finally speaking up, voice deeper than most expected, accompanied by a thick southern accent. “I’ve had tinnitus since then, but there was another accident more recently and my hearing never really …” Baby trailed off. It didn’t really recover. His gaze blinked to the side for a moment as his mind drifted back to the sound of the gunshots in his ears, the intense sound of ringing. There had been some recovery since then, but he’d hit a wall.

    He didn’t even know if it was a wall he could get over.

     
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  4. Helen Magnus

    Helen Magnus Guest



    [​IMG]

    She had feared he would say he had tinnitus, it wasn't a horrible problem alone but apparently something else had happened to him more recently that had damaged his ear. Helen pulled out her otoscope to get a better look into his ears. "I'm going to take a quick look for a moment." Helen put a new tip on it to not cross contaminate from whomever might have been the last person it was used on. Switching on the light Helen places the tip of the device gently into his ear and took a look. This one looked almost normal though not perfect, there was some minor damage inside but she didn't foresee it getting too bad if he took good care of his ears.

    Looking into his other ear was a different story however, it looked horrible. Clearly the accident he had been involved in created enough trauma to his ear to actually damage the eardrum itself. "Bloody hell." Helen muttered. She had seen this sort of levels of damage before, during WWI and WWII artillery men who had been too close to the canons when they went off had a more serious form of it and at times total hearing lose. Luckily it wasn't as bad. "What happened to you?" Helen asked setting the otoscope back down on the table. "I'd like to get a better look at those ears, we have a scan a little more complex than those from my world that will give us an internal view of your eardrum and ear canal but I'm sorry to inform you, your eardrum looks like it was ruptured by something."

    She folded her hands wanting to tell him she knew exactly what was wrong but she couldn't without a clear view. "I can't see the full extent of the damage until after the scan but it appears there is a hole in your eardrum. That can be corrected with surgery but I don't know if it can be fixed without a closer look in the scans. I've done the surgery before, it's fairly simple, I would go in behind your ear and it leaves a fairly small scar you wouldn't notice unless someone was looking for it. However." Helen motioned to his earbuds he had taken out. "You have to be careful, listening to music with those in your ear could continue to cause damage. Your ears are very delicate right now and if you worsen that hole it could become bad enough that it won't be repaired and you will lose all of your hearing."


     
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  5. Baby

    Baby Baby Driver

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    He knew it was gonna be bad. You didn't suffer gunshots beside both of your ears without that kind of damage. Still, he wasn't really prepared for the little 'blood hell' that left her lips and Baby found himself pressing his own lips to a fine line. He hadn't come here expecting good news, so there wasn't any surprise there. His hearing hadn't been the same for a very long time and he ignored it by putting earbuds in his ears and honing in on the music, the only thing that seemed to keep him sane these days.

    But that was why he reacted a little bit more visibly to the mention that the earbuds weren't helping him at all. Swallowing thickly, Baby lifted his gaze to meet hers, hesitating. What was she saying? That he couldn't listen to music in the earbuds anymore?

    "I need them. I need music," he told her, his eyes widening a fraction. It wasn't a matter of just listening to it more quietly on the radio or something from across the room, he needed it in his ears when he couldn't have it playing in public. It was a necessity. It was a defense mechanism, it was a comfort.

    To lose all of his hearing, though. All of it. Not wearing earbuds seemed like the far lesser of two evils. At least with a surgery, he could fix the problem, but he couldn't afford it either. The only thing he could think to do was go to his boss, something he didn't want to do if he didn't have to. But Mr. Wednesday had to be filthy rich after the bank jobs they'd pulled, at least in comparison to Baby.

    "I need to listen to my music ..."

     
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  6. Helen Magnus

    Helen Magnus Guest



    [​IMG]

    He seemed rather upset by the news that the earbuds would have to go. "You can still listen to music, just not so close to your ears until further notice." Preferably after he had corrective surgery and recovered from it. "You can always play music through a device you carry around, just play it through a Bluetooth speaker or a phone speaker. Something that can't get too loud to cause damage to your ears. They are already bad enough. I have seen worse but if they get any worse you may hear nothing at all." That was where this was going, to losing his hearing completely in one or both ears. She didn't like giving bad news but even then Helen could fix this for now. She could get him on the right steps to recover of course it would be easier with her own operating theater.

    There was a sort of terror in his eyes though, as if she had told him someone had shot his dog. Resting a hand on his shoulder Helen tried to comfort him with one of her kind smiled. "I promise you, I'll do everything within my power to be certain this problems is resolved and you keep your hearing. The hearing lose you have suffered though it may be permanent I can correct it so it won't ever get worse and then you can listen to music through ear buds all you like." Helen didn't make her promises lightly either, she may even be able to repair some of the hearing lose but she couldn't promise that. It all came down to how his scans were going to look. If the fine little bone had been broken and was trying to heal, how large the holes were in his ear drums.

    Pulling her hand off his shoulder she nodded her head a little. "Now, lets get a scan of those ears and see what we have to work with shall we?" They had some pretty advanced stuff they had been working on in here. They could even grow artificial skin rather than have to remove it from your body to do skin grafts. Helen was certain she could do the same for the ear drums. Helen walked over to the door again and held it open so she could take him out of the room and down the hall to the MRI. Once of her colleagues walked by holding what looked like a bucket of liquid nitrogen for flash freezing samples and specimens. She gave him a little smile and polite nod before ushering Baby out of the room and closing the door behind her. "The scans are right down here, it won't take too long. Might have to take anything electrical off you however."


     
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  7. Baby

    Baby Baby Driver

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    Everything about what she was saying left him feeling both hopeless and useless. Sure, he could listen to them through something that wasn't directly placed in his ears, but that meant he couldn't listen to it constantly, that meant his head would be who knew where. The woman didn't understand how reliant he was on it, which didn't exactly surprise him. Nobody really understood. Baby couldn't count the number of times he'd watch people chat about him, ask what was wrong with him, if he was mental.

    Baby was more than used to that kind of thing.

    He appreciated the fact that she was trying to help at all, though, so he simply gave her a slight nod of the head, pocketing his iPod and earbuds entirely, the look on his face almost solemn as though that gesture alone was somehow ceiling the deal. Getting up, he trailed after her, not really minding their surroundings because he was trapped in his own head.

    "Is the surgery expensive?" However much it was, Baby was sure he wouldn't be able to afford it on his own. He didn't want to ask Wednesday for help, but he knew it might have to be an option depending on how desperate he was. And when it came to his music, he could get desperate.

    By that point, he had his iPod in his hand again. His iPod and his cell phone both, holding them at the ready for when she needed to take them.

     
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  8. Helen Magnus

    Helen Magnus Guest



    [​IMG]

    He had asked her how expensive the surgery was going to be and with a smile Helen gave a simple answer. "Oh, I don't imagine it will cost too must, in fact I don't imagine it will cost anything for you." She motioned at the clinic quickly. "I get paid enough working at the research clinic and you need this surgery, badly. Because of that I'm not going to charge you at all." People called Helen a saint, told her she had a heart of gold. Back home she had a fortune so it didn't matter to do things for free, what was the point of more money when she really didn't need an income? Here Helen could actually use that money to fund her Sanctuary but she had taken money from a horrible cause before and built her work off of it. The blood money for Adam's destruction by the British government and Helen was tired of raising Sanctuaries on the bones of her enemies. Better to build it from her own hard work and willpower. Besides it was in Helen's nature to help.

    If she had actually charged him it would have been a price few people could have actually afforded out of pocket. Even back home it would have been a difficult price to pay which was what health insurance was for and universal health care. Helen took his phone and ipod slipping them into the pocket of her lab coat. "I'll take good care of them until it's done." She promised him and then walked him into the big white room where the machine sat. There were little warning signs all over the place warning you not to run the machine with any electronics in someones pockets, to stand back while the machine was running, warnings of who couldn't be scanned inside the machine.Particularly magnetically sensitive species. For instance putting Tesla in this thing would have destroyed a very expensive piece of equipment.

    Pressing down on a button a white platform started to slide out from inside, long enough to let a taller person lay back on it comfortably. "If you are claustrophobic at all I can give you a mild sedative to help with that. It's a bit of a tight fit inside." Some people panicked once they were inside. The walls were so close you couldn't move your arms. The ceiling felt like it was just above your face. It was a coffin to many even if that wasn't really the purpose of it. Nothing more than a medical machine used to scan someone with far greater detail than an x-ray. "If not then hop on up." She patted the bench for him to lay down. "If at any point you feel you are getting frightened are about to panic let me know. I'd rather deal with it before you are fully inside and it causes any problems for you."


     
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  9. Baby

    Baby Baby Driver

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    He didn’t like the idea of it, that she wouldn’t charge him at all, that he would essentially be taking a free surgery from her. Baby may have appreciated the thought, but he knew what it was like to be in someone’s debt, to owe them a favor, and while she was a doctor and she seemed nice, he didn’t want to take his chances. Besides, Joe wouldn’t have approved and Baby tended to think a lot about Joe, and he would and wouldn’t have approved of. Some things, he had no control over, like his job situation and the illegal things he ended up involved in. Other things, though, he had some control over and this was one of those things.

    There was a nervous little churn of the stomach as she took his electronics from him. How had Baby grown so reliant on them? Not so much the phone, but the iPod. The music. It was a comfort, a defense mechanism, and the only way he really knew he could focus. Now, all he could hear was that ringing in his ear. Loud and true.

    Even as he following her gaze to the bench and the machine as a whole, Baby didn’t seem to be phased by the idea of such a tight space. He felt at home when driving small, fast vehicles and claustrophobia had never been an issue for him. “It’s okay,” he said, stepping toward the bench, but then he paused, looking back to her. “I want to pay.”

    That was all he said, not waiting for a response before he turned again and lifted himself up onto the bench, swinging his legs over and laying down. A few deep breaths followed before he looked to Helen and gave a slight nod of the head.

     
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  10. Helen Magnus

    Helen Magnus Guest



    [​IMG]

    Helen nodded her head, a little smile creeping over her face. In his situation she would have said the same thing. Still she wouldn't feel right charging him full price or even making him pay it all up front. "Very well, it's expensive so how about this. You can pay me as you get the money, I'll cut the price down just so you don't have to spend the rest of your life paying off debt but I won't charge you all up front for the surgery. How about, 15% of the total cost up front and everything else you can pay off as you go.At least that way it's more reasonable." The idea of someone being unable to pay for a surgery they needed bothered Helen but he also had some pride in himself. He didn't want a handout and she had respect for that. "I can draw up a contract after the scan so it's all out on paper." Hopefully clear out any confusion and work out something that will work for him.

    Once he was down on the table she gave a nod of her own head and pressed the switch to start moving the bench back into the machine. "Watch your head." She gave warning until he was all the way in. "I'll be just in the other room, you'll be able to hear me through a speaker in there. This should be over with fairly quick." So far he wasn't having a panic attack or asking to come back out which was the first important step to the process. If someone was calm this ended so much quicker and smoother. Walking into the smaller side room Helen went over to the station set up to run the machine and took a seat in the chair before sliding forward towards the computer and hitting the intercom system. "Alright now, I'm going to start the scan, try not to move your head or it will ruin the scans. Take nice slow breaths, you'll hear a beep when the session is done. I've raised the volume a bit more so you can hear it better."

    Helen started up the process watching the lights inside start to flash as it mapped out the inside of his head. It wasn't quite to the sophistication of mapping out brain activity as hers had been back at the Sanctuary but already a 3D image was starting to form on the screen. It picked up tiny details in his skull and jaw, even the small bones within his ear canal, the first sign of trouble when she noticed one had been damaged. Even the holes in his ear drums were visible, one ear a bit worse than the other and possibly something he had even been born with. Only worsened by the trauma from a loud sound. This might even end up being a two person surgery, someone else who was a specialist on this sort of injury and with more adapt tools than what Helen had here. Once the span was finished the beeping started and Helen slid back to the computer. "Alright, I'll be in to let you out and you can come in and see the scans."

    She wheeled away from the desk and back out into the room before pressing down on the switch and bringing the bench back out from inside the machine. It always seemed to move slower coming out than going back in. They would need to get that looked at on of these days. Once he was free from his 'coffin' Helen gave him time to sit back up and handed back his phone and ipod, something he would likely be happy to get back. They younger generations were so attached to technology unlike Helen whom everyone still rolled their eyes at when she insisted everything still be on paper and analog. "Well, it's a bit more on the worse end of the spectrum than I would have liked but it can still be fixed, not completely but well enough that I can save your hearing. We can look at the scans if you like." If he wanted to see the holes in his eardrums and the damage caused to them.


     
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  11. Baby

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    She was willing to cut down the price for him and to let him pay in increments. That was better than not paying at all, so Baby just gave her a slight nod of the head and concentrated instead on what they were doing now. He'd never had an issue with small spaces, but the entire machine was unsettling to him despite her appreciated explanations.

    So he closed his eyes. He closed his eyes and he breathed steadily as the bench pulled him into the machine, trying to tune out the lights and the urge to open his eyes. That way he didn't have to give into any unexpected panic that may have arisen. He just listened to the sound of his own breathing and the sound of her voice.

    And then it was over. A quick process, maybe, but it felt like it had lasted forever, so he couldn't help but feel a sense of relief when he felt the machine pulling him back out again, Baby's lips parting as he took in a deeper breath, eyes blinking open. Slowly, he sat up on the bench, staring up at her as she explained to him what she had seen. It wasn't what he wanted to hear, but none of this was what he wanted to hear. He just wanted his ears to be okay, he just wanted to listen to his music.

    It wasn't a want, it was a need. A necessity.

    "No," he suddenly said, gaze low as he got to his feet again. "No, it's okay, I believe you. What do you need from me for this to happen?"

     
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  12. Helen Magnus

    Helen Magnus Guest



    [​IMG]

    She didn't blame him for not wanting to see the damage himself, Helen had been there once only in that case she had been dying. Her cells were braking down from severe radiation poisoning. Once Helen had known about it she hadn't wanted to linger on it much longer, only on how to fix it. Giving a nod of her head and a little smile she let him know they could get to work. "I'll get the papers for you, some information on the surgery, so care tips for prior to the surgery and care tips for afterwards and the recovery process so you know what to expect before moving forward. I'll likely try to get a few other doctors together to assist with the surgery itself. It's extensive damage and i want another pair of eyes on it to make sure it goes off without a hitch. I'll also need a better facility so I'll have to keep you updated for when we can actually schedule the surgery itself."

    Helen walked back towards the hallway and into one of the offices opening up a filing cabinet and pulling out various papers to stick into a folder. She already had a medical chart set up for before he had come, she'd have to put the rest of his information and even the scans into the folder to show to other doctors and gauge who had the skill to help her handle this situation. Opening up the folder she pulled up a chair for him and set the folder down on the table. "Here is some information for the care post surgery and the surgery process and what to expect." She slipped him the papers to take with him. It was important he familiarized himself with it due to the fact he had no guardian. He was old enough to shoulder the full responsibility for his recovery.

    "Here is the legal documentation and paperwork you'll need to fill out with your medical background and letting us know you understand what this procedure entails." Helen slid him the sheet and a pen before going on and shuffling through more papers. She pulled out one writing on it to modify it a bit more, the payment that would be given before the surgery along with the writ up for how long he had before he had to pay off the charges though Helen had crossed out a few lines virtually giving him all the time he needed to pay this surgery off. "Here is the payment information. I'm taking a few thousand dollars off this charge." She gave him her card as well with both her private phone and her work phone on it. "And if you need to contact me with any more concerns my numbers are here along with email. Now, before you go if you have any questions about this feel free to ask, I'll give you everything I can and address any concerns."


     
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  13. Baby

    Baby Baby Driver

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    Every word out of her mouth just emphasized how bad this all was. It just emphasized how badly he needed this surgery if we wanted to keep using his ears, and most importantly, keep his ears from getting worse. It was a lot to take in and he was predictably silent as she explained herself, excused herself momentarily, and then returned with those papers.

    Even looking at the paperwork was on the intimidating side, and Baby found himself just needing to walk away more than anything else. He stared down at all, admittedly looking a little bit lost despite how hard he was trying. If he came back with a clear head, maybe, which would be hard given the circumstances.

    "No, no questions," he said, because it was true. He didn't have any at all, she'd answered everything he could have possibly needed to know. "... I just need time. Time to think about it. I'll call you."

     
  14. Baby

    Baby Baby Driver

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    From there, there was nothing left to do but think. Think hard and long, but Baby thought he already knew what he wanted to do. It wasn't about a want, though -- rather, a need. And so, he left the clinic in mind, phone already in his hand as he pulled up Mr. Wednesday's number, his mind a nervous frenzy. He knew what he had to do. He couldn't afford this surgery on his own.

    THE END