Wednesday, February 2, 2011


She woke in a cold sweat, the walls of her small room entirely too close, the air too stifling. Her guts churned and she bolted for the toilet. Wretching did little to ease the stress. Josephina looked at herself in the mirror, hunched over the sink. Her eyes were sunken, her skin was pasty.

"You aren't exactly the epitome of beauty right now Jo," Ben looked at her in the mirror. He stood in the doorframe, his wiry, lanky frame looking forelorn in the bad lighting.

"You always know how to make a lady feel special," Josephina turned, leaning back against the sink. She still hadn't put back any weight since the return from the Emirates. She just looked at Ben with a thousand-yard stare.

"Night terrors," Ben said, matter-of-factly, "I ain't no doctor," he pre-empted Josephina's "no, you ain't" by raising a hand, "but we've all had post traumatic stress disorder before. You're tougher than most of us, so it doesn't surprise me that it took a few weeks to develop."

"You got it too?"

"Jo, I figure I haven't hit REM sleep since last Autumn." He smirked, but then met her stare with one of his own. "Peter, Sid, and me, we know what they did to you down there."

"Shut it, Cantor."

"Fine. But you get to the clinic tomorrow morning, and you meet with Celina, or someone, and you work this out."

"And if I don't?" Josephina stood and closed the distance to Ben. She was glaring down at him threateningly.

"Caravan's coming back soon. There's always Avatanya." Ben said simply, meeting her glare.

There was a tense silence.

"And what about you?" Josephina finally spat out, "and Peter, and Sid?"

"Me and Peter've been self-medicating, like you jokers did after Baja." Ben produced a flask, took a quick swig, and then offered it to her. She refused. "But Peter assures me that the Okavango castle was a cakewalk compared to Baja. As for Sid, well, I figure if you get some help, he'll follow suite."


Julie said...

Given today's popular culture tropes, I really wasn't expecting "PTSD" to be the conclusion reached when a woman throws up in the morning a few weeks after she's potentially been raped. Just putting that out there.

Game Thug said...

To what do you allude? ;)

Heavy Josh said...

You guys are gross.

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