Saturday, 25 July 2009 - 9:30 pm

Doctor’s orders

I couldn’t quite bring myself to talk to Bree or Ben today. There was just too much rising in me to do it.

I saw Bree. She’s staying in a side room with her friends: Mira the teenager and Scott the random pickup. She’s pale and that was enough to make me turn around and walk away. Bloodloss. Ben.


Instead, I took hold of my courage and went to speak to someone else. Someone who I hoped would have some answers for me.

I didn’t expect a warm reception and I didn’t get one. At first, I didn’t think he’d talk to me. When I walked up to him, he looked ready to physically toss me out of his way. Luckily for me, he’s a wiry little guy and his mouth is much worse than his hands.

It’s never fun asking Masterson for help. He called me names and spent ten minutes tearing strips off me, until I was nearly in tears all over again. It’s nothing I haven’t said to myself and I was determined not to run away from him.

He said that he had noticed something when Ben was sick. When the Sickness got really bad and we thought he was going to die. After Ben got better, he asked Masterson to check him over. After the doctor noticed a few odd things he couldn’t explain – like low body temperature and elusive pulse – Ben called the whole thing to a stop. Since he returned to the group, Masterson has noticed Ben’s strange behaviour and the sunburn.

I asked him why he didn’t say anything. Masterson shrugged and said it wasn’t up to him to force people to do what they should be doing. It’s not like he doesn’t have enough to do in the group just keeping on top of the injuries. And if Ben didn’t want his help, what did he care?

I tried to get the doctor to help me work out what’s going on with Ben. What’s different about him. Masterson didn’t want to play ball, though.

“Go talk to the chemist,” he said, shooing me away. “Deal with your own problems. Ben gives me the creeps.”

Talking to him is like running into a spiked wall. I gave up eventually and left him alone, with only a little more information for my trouble. Ben’s body seems to be running slowly – his heartbeat is low, which is probably part of the reason he’s so cold. It’s not much, but I guess it’s something to go on.


I should take Masterson’s advice and see if Kostoya can help me figure this out.

The thing is, I’m not sure if working out what’s going on physically will help me deal with the other stuff. With Caroline, with Bree, with blood and meat. With not being entirely human any more. Will bald facts really help me work out how I’m supposed to feel about all this?

There’s no manual for this kind of thing. I feel like I’m learning to dance, but there’s no music or footprints painted on the floor. Who turned off the music?