Bitty Hospital: Bear and Skye
Who: Bear and Skye What: Reassurances and Sugar Highs Where: Bitty Hospital When: Early afternoon Warnings: N/A
After a call, Bear washed the blood off of his hands, took a deep breath, and exhaled, eyeing himself in the mirror. He washed his face quickly, then went in search of Skye. He knew she was around today, and he kind of needed to see her just now. One of the people in the car accident he’d just been out to hadn’t made it. His gift was useless even if he got there as they were exhaling their last breath. The second they were gone, he couldn’t do a thing for them.
So, sometimes, he needed to just lay eyes on her, to reassure himself that she was still alive. He never came out and said it, of course. It was like his other visits, to just check up on her. But every now and then, there was that little ulterior motive along with his genuinely wanting to catch up with the girl.
He found her in one of the halls, just exiting a patient’s room. He grinned at her, something he could call up no matter what sort of mood he was in. Bear was good at that, smiling through anything. He waved. “I was just thinking to myself that I had made this dinner reservation for two at the diner,” he said, shaking his head. “And darn it, if I didn’t just forget to invite someone else. Know anyone who would want to go to dinner after their shift?” he asked. “You know how the diner is, sooo exclusive, they never want to give any wiggle room on the reservations thing,” he teased.
Skye liked her job, even when the patients smelled a little like death or maybe just sadness, something. She kept feeling like she knew more, but she knew she didn’t. It was just that feeling. She could sense him though, catching sight of him just before being hit with that smile. How did he do that? Skye had yet to figure out how she felt about Bear, but somewhere along the line he’d gone from being sort of a protective big brother or young uncle or something to this guy and it sort of threw her every time. She pushed it away though, shrugging a little and tucking her hands into the pockets of her scrub shirt.
“Dunno,” she teased back, humming a little. “I would hate for you to miss out on a good reservation.” She tapped her chin then grinned at him. “Lucky for you though, I get out of here at a reasonable hour.”
“Really? Sweet. You’re really doing me a favor,” he told her. “Just for that, I’ll buy.” He always did. It was just part of how he rolled, period, and he knew Skye didn’t have a lot. Any little thing he could do to help her out he’d do in a heartbeat. “How’s your day been?” he asked, leaning his back against the wall, hands shoved into his pockets. He was up for the distraction, wanting to hear about her day instead of getting into his own. He liked her sense of humor, dry as it was. She made him laugh.
Skye ducked her head, wishing for long hair just this once to maybe hide the warmth she felt in her cheeks. He didn’t have to do that, but she knew better than to argue. Honestly, up until recently it hadn’t even bothered her, but since she’d become acutely aware of how little few men out there were paying for her dinner, when Bear did it, she took notice. “If I tell you about my day now what are we going to talk about at dinner?” she asked, but she didn’t dodge the topic more. “It’s been a decent one. Everyone’s still here.” Which was always a good sign. They didn’t get a lot of patients, but keeping all of them was for the best.
He paused, humming before he came up with an answer. “Supposed ‘heroes’ from pop culture who are actually really bad at their jobs,” he said, as if this was a perfectly reasonable dinner topic. Then he went on to listen to what she said. “That’s awesome,” he said genuinely. He hoped it stayed that way. Anyone who worked in a hospital knew that death was just something that happened there, but that didn’t make it easier to deal with at all. So, he was hoping Skye didn’t have to deal with one when she was so close to quitting time.
“What, like how Batman is really just focused on his personal vendettas or how Starlord mostly just gets lucky?” Skye could play along for sure. There was the slightest hesitation in her steps, but then she moved to lean against the wall opposite of him. “Yeah. Yeah, it is.” It was hard to lose people, to watch life slip away. Every day she felt more sure that she wanted to do this, but the death was so much harder to deal with. How had she cheated it when they couldn't? She ran a hand over her face, then looked at him. “What about you?”
“Ah, Batman. Such a rich tapestry of messed up psychology,” he said. “We could talk about that alone for hours. Years, maybe. And yes on the Starlord thing too. I think that’s his superpower. He’s lucky.” He smiled at her, and there was just a tiny edge around his eyes that spoke of the fact that he’d had a long day. “What about me like how was my day? Or what about me, what superheroes do I have to put on the table?”
“It’s not like he had other superpowers anyway,” Skye agreed, but she caught that way his smile didn’t fully fill his eyes. “How was your day,” she clarified, though she was curious about the other topic, she knew which one to ask about.
“Nope. Just his towering ego, and, like, magic blank eyes,” Bear said with a nod. He made a face when he knew he was caught. She’d known him long enough and knew him well enough to catch it more than other people did. “Not that great. Lost someone,” he told her. She knew how much that bothered him. He had a phenomenal record for saving people, but he wasn’t perfect.
There it was. Skye pushed off the wall and didn't stop until she'd wrapped her arms around his middle, holding on to him tightly. As weird as she’d felt lately about him and what they might be, she couldn't stop herself. He was here because he needed some reassurance and the hugs usually did the trick.
Bear was a huge believer in hugs. He was a snuggly person by nature, and he believed that a lot of times, a hug or touch could mean a hell of a lot more than words could. So, when she hugged him, he hugged her back, giving her a squeeze, then leaning back to pick her up off of her feet, because he could. Bear’s bear hug.
Skye squeaked when he lifted her off the ground, a sound very much not her, but Bear brought that out in her. He made her snuggly and approachable. “You did your best I’m sure,” she murmured somewhere around his chest, not sure if he’d hear her, but he didn’t really have to.
“I did,” he said, answering her. He drew out the hug for a moment longer, shifting her side to side before he carefully set her on her feet again, and let go, giving her a big, warm smile. “Thanks,” he added. “I know what it costs you to hug people,” he added, teasing her just a little. There had been a phase when she’d been younger where she hadn’t wanted anyone within four feet of her. It had been close to when she’d opted to settle here. He’d ignored the shit out of that quirk, because he’d known just how alone she was. “Your sacrifice has been noble and will be awarded,” he added. “With sugar. Ice cream, most likely, though I could be talked into funnel cakes at the carnival.”
Skye stayed close to him, shaking her head. “You’re always worth it.” She avoided people left and right, but not Bear. He was too important. “I was thinking pancakes with whipped cream and strawberries?” she suggested, nudging his side with her elbow and tucking under his arm.
He easily slipped his arm around her shoulders, and was reminded again that she felt fragile to him. She was a tough girl, he knew that. She'd been through a whole lot, and she could handle a whole lot more, but he'd never lost that knowledge that he'd held her life in his hands. That she had been so close to death, she'd been only a handful of breaths away. So it didn't matter that she was strong, and could probably take on anything she wanted, in his mind, she was always going to feel a bit breakable.
“See, now that sounds pretty great,” he told her. “This is why I keep you around. You have the best suggestions for sugar related things.” He nodded sagely. “So I'll meet you at the diner?” he asked, knowing he probably had a report to fill out and she had to finish up what she was doing, but he felt better for having sought her out.
He was warm and huge and all of it was too confusing for Skye’s senses. She needed a real life distraction if she was starting to think about Bear this way. Still, she rested her head against his side, smiling to herself. “You keep me around because you love me,” she pointed out, but nodded nonetheless. “Yup. Just have to drop in another room or two and make sure everyone is comfy, then I’m all done here. Maybe...half an hour?”
“That too,” he agreed. And he did love her, she was one of the most important people in his life. Not much would bring out a violent streak in the man, but someone hurting her would. Not that he'd ever had occasion to do anything like that, thank goodness. “Half hour it is,” he said. “I'm going to go finish up, and see you there.” He gave her one last little squeeze, then headed down the hall, whistling some random little tune as he went, happy to have a brain-reset. He truly did hate dwelling on the bad.