The Hand that Kills, Part 2: The Next Morning

March 15, 2016:

Daredevil awakes, remember that he's been stabbed and had to spend that night upon the Night Nurse's couch.

Night Nurse's apartment

Characters

NPCs: None.

Mentions:

Plot:

Mood Music: [*\# None.]


Fade In…

As the sun rises over the buildings of New York, light filters down into the individual windows of the many skyscrapers throughout the island. When the light hits Claire's living room, Daredevil can feel it across the exposed part of his face. He awakes in a start and immediately wishes he didn't because of the pain. Yep. Everything comes back to him. The ninjas he took on, the sai, and the help of a complete stranger. With heavy effort he pulls himself up, stopping a moment to check his bandaged wound with his hand. The rest had done him some good. He was in no shape to go into work this morning, and alternatively, realizes that he'd kill to get home and sleep in his own bed.

Things that probably hit him a few moments later — the scent of cooking one room over — something with cinnamon, bananas and just a hint of rum; the lingering traces of antiseptic in the room. The smell of fresh water in a cup on the coffee table in front of him and the odd tinge of something medical — two gel caps of probably pain killers next to the glass. Beneath those scents, there are more subtle things, the pot of coffee that is just beginning to brew, the lingering heat of a shower that was taken one room over. Cocoa butter. Damp hair. And the very quiet humming of an old Spanish song as the woman works to actually put together a decent breakfast. She doesn't take many mornings off, she's actually enjoying it for once.

It's another minute that passes before Claire ducks her head out of the kitchen and notices her patient is sitting up. She murmurs quietly, "You probably feel like shit. Take the pills on the table. You can move into the bedroom, if you want. There's black out curtains in there. Sleep a bit longer." She has yet to realize the man is blind, it seems.

Daredevil "looks" over towards the table as the sound of her voice 'illuminates' the pills, which he grabs quickly, holding them between his teeth, until he fetches the glass and downs them quickly.

"I've taken up plenty of your time," he admits as he rests on his elbows at the knees. "I want to thank you for what you've done for me. You saved my life. And my secret."

"I need to get to my other life. You probably do as well."

"Look, Mike," Yes, that name is sticking, because it's the best she's got and he's already finding ways to annoy her the same damn way Mike did, "You still have a side full of packing in that wound. You're not going *anywhere* until I pull that out and see how bad the bleeding is. And flush it all. Also, if I eat all this food I cooked, it's going to go straight to my hips and then I'll really be pissed at you. So… you can limp back to the bedroom and get another hour sleep, or you can lay down and let me start unwrapping you like some gory present right now, but there's no way you're noble-martyr walking out of here right now. So, those are your choices." Claire Temple isn't a woman who apologizes for anything, or lets any sort of lacking confidence run her life. She was a woman who knew her job and knew how to give orders, now he's being firmly under the gun of that confidence. There isn't even a hiccup or a fluttering speed of her heart to suggest that she fears he won't listen to her. She simply knows she's right.

"Fair enough." Daredevil leans back against the couch and then slides down to his side, before picking up his legs to get himself situated. Even if he were right, he's simply in no position to argue. His lack of access to a phone is going to make Foggy rather worried, of course.

"Rum, cinnamon, and bananas. Some sort of hot dish? And it's not the cheap kind of cinnamon, it's a good brand. It is, however, the cheap brand of rum." He chuckles a bit to himself as he reaches out with his ears, listening to the city wake.

"You got a good nose on you, Mike." Claire states in quiet approval, ducking back into the kitchen just a moment to put the sweet breakfast casserole into the oven so it can cook while she's working. The sound of water running can be heard a moment later, and the heavy scrubbing with antiseptic soap that, for some reason, she keeps next to the dish soap. She scrubs down like a surgeon, so it's going to be a few minutes, but her hands are fresh and clean from any stickiness or other germs as she steps back into the front room.

"The rum cooks off. Don't need the good stuff. It's a waist of good Cuban rum." There's still just a few hints at the edge of her voice that says she grew up in the US, but she probably grew up speaking as much Spanish as she did English and, sometimes, some of her consonants are harder for it. She sinks down into kneeling at his side, pulling out latex gloves and slipping them on before she carefully pulls back the bandage over that packing. She studies his face a moment, perhaps catching that worry. She knows how to read a patient. "…Somethin' on your mind? Work going to be pissed you're late?"

"Something like that. A friend of mine is going to be worried about me," he admits. "Nothing new."

Matt lets out a slow exhale and does his best to relax. "Bummer about the rum." Cooking off he means. As for his accent it's understated, but still very much New York-based. "Puerto Rican?" The question is in relation to her accent and just the general demographics of the neighborhood. His mind drifts again towards Foggy and a pang of worry strikes him. Worried about how much Foggy is worrying. People in college used to mock them for their closeness. He now realizes why.

For as much of a hard ass, confident whip cracker she is, Claire is also the worst soft touch on the block. That's how she keeps GETTING people half dying that show up on her door. The woman sighs, "…Men like you are going to be the death of me…" SHe mutters beneath her breath and stands, walking back towards the kitchen and her purse. A handful of heartbeats later, she's returned to his side and is offering her cell phone in his direction. "Call him before I start pulling you apart and it sounds like I'm torturing you." She folds her arms, waiting, "And yes, Puerto Rican. My mum and abeula, at least. And how the hell do you see through that thing?" Claire asks, now getting better sight of the mask in the daylight.

"Can't. Secret identity and all of that," Daredevil says with a smile. "I call them, you track the number, do a little digging, and then you find out who I am. That's against the hero handbook."

"The mask? Trade secret. And if you stopped saving men like me, we wouldn't be able to be the death of you. Perhaps you're a masochist."

His refusal draws a completely disapproving sigh from her lips, "You really are like Mike." That's not a compliment. And yet, she gets back down to her knees and cleans her hands again (since she touched her phone) before pulling on a fresh pair of gloves and looking back to that wound. "Fine. Pout like some puppy. It's not getting you out of here any faster." But she is finally going to work on the wound. Ever so carefully, she begins to pull that gauze from where she'd packed it the night before. It's that weird butterflies and stinging sensation again, the stinging just on the end where the nerves are.

The sensation is an odd one more than purely painful, but Daredevil grits his teeth and bares it until it's taken out. "I suppose I should try harder to not get stabbed in the future. How hard and fast is that three day rule?" He asks, as if he's hoping there's been some large change in his health in the past several hours. Doesn't hurt to ask, of course.

"How hard and fast is it that you need at least seven pints of blood in your body at any given time?" Claire deadpans back in his direction, quiet impatience behind her voice as she begins to examine the wound in the daylight. While it was looking like she could probably stitch now, she still wasn't going to set him back to working, "Light duty for *three days*. And light means sitting at a desk, paperwork, internet surfing, that's *it*. Give these stitches at least SOME chance to be useful before you go ripping them again?"

And with that comment about the stitches really being the only warning that is coming, she reaches for one of the sealed needles and dissolving thread packs she has. She pulls it open, the curved needle already threaded. She gives the outside of his wound another careful cleansnig with an antiseptic wipe, and she's beginning to stitch. Her motions are careful and swift — she's got hands as good as any surgeon's, mercifully for Matt. No wonder people come here.

"I always thought that was just a guideline," Daredevil shoots back, regarding the amount of blood needed to, you know, live. "Got it. Paperwork. Sitting. Resting. Got it. Scout's honor." He wasn't a boy scout.

As the stitches go in, Matt takes it well. He's used to it, to be honest. Much of the time he's done it on his own, which is always an adventure. And even before he got into this business, he used to stitch his father up. This part was something he knew.

"The guideline is 8. 7 is… semi functional. 6? And your blood pressure starts dropping to levels which can't sustain life." Claire might be exaggerating, JUST a bit, but she's used to trying to scare sense into particularly stubborn patients. She doesn't speak again as she works, the expert motions of her fingertips like a pianist, as her breath can be felt across his skin she's leaned so close, it's tinged with toothpaste, cinnamon and bananas (she, apparently, likes to sample as she cooks.)

"Alright," Daredevil says, admitting defeat with a sigh. "You win." Put like that, he's not going to push it too far. Besides, it's pretty hard to save Hell's Kitchen when you're dead. Hopefully NPR has something good on the radio this weekend, or maybe he'll have to dig into his podcasts.

Daredevil is surprised as to how quickly she's moving—this is working much faster than when he does it (probably for obvious reasons). "When did you start doing this for people?"

"For strange men in masks, you mean? Or in general?" Claire murmurs, her voice a bit slower — all of her body is slowly dropping into that zen state she gets when she's working on a challenging wound. Pulse slower, breath more even, mind totally focused, not a tremble to her hand or jerk to her muscles. She's actually doing a bit finer work on his wound than regular stitches — it's very minor surgery on some of the muscle and flesh inside, making it more likely the outer stitches will hold and that his wound might heal a bit faster. But he doesn't need to know that.

"…probably a decade, now. Went to nursing school soon as I got my GED… got my GED because the public schools around here are shit and I was wasting my time." That comment has a line of both pride and sadness behind her voice. She loves Hell's Kitchen, for all it's problems.

"I know what you mean," Daredevil says with a nod. "I grew up here too." And, though fiercely loyal to the Clinton neighborhood, he can't help but admit that she's right. It's not crime alone that he is working against, but one man can only do so much. "I'm glad you stayed here. Probably could have had a higher standard of living someplace else."

"It…it's home. This was my Abeula's apartment." Claire states softly, so much damn heart behind those words it's almost hard to encompass. But, before he thinks she's an entire push over, she adds with a slight crack of a smile behind her husky voice. "Besides, it's rent controlled. You know how hard it is to get this much space anywhere south of Washington Heights?" And with that little bit of a tease, she finishs tying off his last few stitches. She cleans up the skin one last time before taping another square of gauze over it. "Three days. Got it? I ain't gonna stop you from walking out of here now, though I think you should have breakfast, but… Seriously, you'll rip out all that work if you don't give it 3 days."

"I hear ya," Matt responds. "This place meant a lot to my family as well. And you can't beat rent controlled." He nods to her, "3 days. I could use a short vacation anyways," he adds with a smile. Pulling up, he reaches for his shirt-armor combo and begins to strap up. "It might be a good idea to let me know if you happen to see anything funny. I don't want you pulled into anything I've dug up. I'll be by in a few days."

"And thank you, again. I owe you my life."

"Yeah, yeah…that's what they all say. You were never here, either. Go, get outta here before I get insulted you're not staying to eat and the ghost of my dead grandma starts yelling at us both." Claire states sardonically, not really surprised that he's beating a hasty retreat. At least she got him stitched up. She watches him as he dresses, walking him to the door, still curious about that mask. Once she's seen him out and locked the bolt behind him, she sighs, leaning against the door with a shake of her head, "You are… such an idiot push over, Claire Temple…" SHe mutters to herself. "And they keep getting hotter. Dammit all to hell." Oblivious that he might hear ANY Of that, she sighs and moves back for her kitchen.

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