Day 011: Conversations Away
Summary: In which Cameron and Morgan discuss certain things— including some dangerous things— in the aftermath of healing the Coesbur villagers.
Date: 18 5 2016
Related: Doctor Knows Best
Cameron Morgan 

Guest Room in the Seat of Coesburg
Day 11

All things considered, treating the Grounders went remarkably well. No one died. Which isn't to say that no one will die; several times there were complications and a couple of them were serious enough that they're being watched carefully in case their conditions deteriorate. But given that they were all performed by two eighteen year old criminals under primitive conditions, it probably counts as a success.

Still, Morgan's a bit bummed that he didn't do them all perfectly and once they got to the 'just wait and see' stage, he asked about a place to rest. It's been a long day. After cleaning up, he heads up to a guest room.

Cameron examined their guest rooms briefly, but otherwise lingered at the edge of the room. He might not have had much to actually do, but he waited to be prepared in case of need, and also, to watch Morgan's back. He gestures, and leads Morgan up the stairs and to the guest room, "That stuff that came out of them, wow, if I hadn't have been spending time in the dropship which smells like rotten feet, I might have gagged." Not that Cameron would /really/ lose his cool like that, but still. "You did good. I think."

"None of them died so good enough I guess." Morgan answers, taking off his jacket and revealing a light bandage over his wound. He tosses it onto the end of the platform bed then sits down to pull his boots off. "I could have done a lot better. And that one guy's not in good shape."

Moving over, Cam stands near to where Morgan sits, reaching his hands over to squeeze at his shoulders, and then rub deeper, giving a makeshift massage. "Considering what resources you had available to you, you should be proud you guys were able to do anything at all." That said, he tilts his head to the side a bit, "Anything more you can do for him? They have him on willow bark, and …"

Morgan mms approvingly at the massage but he shakes his head. "Not really, no. I might have punctured his lung. Not too badly, I think. And the needle is thin so it should heal by itself. I hope so; we can't repair it. But the tea should keep his fever down and draining the fluid will let them breath. It wasn't the virus that was killing them but what the virus caused."

Cameron keeps it up; after all, he's spent the day not really doing anything, so helping Morgan relax after stressful times seems like the least he can do. He does nod his head, thoughtfully, "And are we sure we gave it to them? Of course, the coincidence would be fairly rediculous. Besides, its really a moot point. The real point is we offered aide when they asked, and proved ourselves."

"It's seems likely given the timing." Morgan says. "We might catch things from them in turn. A hundred years of separation lets germs mutate." Though the Arkers had the benefit of genetic engineering so they might be safe as far as foreign bugs go. Reaching up, he takes one of Cam's wrists and pulls it forward to kiss his hand. "Lie down with me. I'm beat."

"That makes sense." Cameron nods his head slightly, "Their immune system evolved in its cold war with the bugs they were exposed to, and we did the same." That said, there's a warm smile that shows dimples when his hand is kissed, and he's nodding easily in agreement, pushing one boot against the other until first one then the other foot pops out of his boots, and then he settles down on his side by Morgan. "I bet. Can you believe like, eleven days ago, we were in the Ark? I can't tell if it feels like yesterday or a lifetime ago. Sometimes both. If that makes any sense at all."

Morgan swings his legs up onto the pallet and lies down, propped up on an elbow. "You're wearing too much." he says, tugging Cam's shirt with a couple fingers. He thinks a moment then nods. "Both. I feel older than just eleven days. And after this, there's the summit. I wouldn't mind a rest." he admits.

"Aren't you the one who likes privacy?" inquires Cameron with a grin, though he does lean up and snag at his shirt and pull it over his head and drop it down beside them, propping himself on an elbow too. He reaches his hand out to trace a finger lightly along Morgan's chest appreciatively, "I'm not sure we're going to get anything like a rest — for a long, long time. We have to catch moments here or there and find a way to be satisfied by it, because I'm afraid that's all we're going to get."

"I'm sure everyone's seen a bare chest before. Especially yours." Morgan teases. Though he's the one usually shirtless of late. Putting a hand flat on Cam's chest, he gently pushes to encourage him to lie back. "I just want to use you as a pillow." he says with a tired smile. "And yeah, I'm pretty sure you're right."

Cameron follows Morgan's lead, and shifts his arm up so that when Morgan lays his head upon him, Cam's arm can wrap around Morgan'sbody. "I'm pretty sure its in the contract, boyfriends— this is sounding a little less ridiculous so I keep saying it— have pillow privileges after a hard day, so, happily." He lets his fingers trace idle patterns upon Morgan's shoulder, his voice softer, "Sometimes being right sucks, but I'm here for you whenever you need me to be."

Morgan rests his head on Cam's shoulder and puts an arm across his chest. Closing his eyes, he mmmms. "Comfy. I wanted to talk to you too about something that happened last night after you left the dropship."

Turning his head, Cam brushes a light kiss against Morgan's forehead, continuing to trace his little lines. Cameron seems enthralled by Morgan's skin, in general. "Sure." he says softly, since they're close there's no reason to talk very loud, "What's up?"

"I went to talk to Jaha." Morgan says simply. Just that, no more.

There's a slight bit of tension that enters into Cameron's body, but its not too severe. He takes a moment to breath in, his chest rising for a long moment before he exhales softly, "What did he have to say? Still asking permission to do what he can do whenever he wants, for reasons passing understanding?" He manages to keep his hatred for Jaha in check and be reasonable, but its there just under the surface. But Cameron, being Cameron, keeps control and rational.

"He was still intending to stay in orbit when the others came down." Morgan agrees. Pause. "Until I talked him out of it."

Cameron blinks. He's still a little tense, but the tension doesn't increase. His voice sounds a little confused, "You talked him out of it?" At the moment he rather wants to look Morgan in the eye, but he can't figure out the logistics while holding onto the young man. The tracing on Morgan's skin, though, stops. "I don't understand. What happened? Why did you talk him out of it?"

Morgan rolls off of Cam and props himself on his elbow so he they can look at each other. "I told him he was taking the easy way out. That by dissolving the Council and stepping down, he'd just cause chaos by leaving the Arkers without leadership exactly when they needed it most. By staying in orbit, he was washing his hands of it all when it would be his responsibility. That the Arkers trusted him to lead them and without him, there'd be a power struggle as soon as they landed no matter who was elected to the Council." He's watching Cam carefully as he talks. "I said if he was still Chancellor, there was a chance he could maintain control of the situation till they got settled. I asked him point blank if he trusted Kane and his guards not to try to stay in power and that I didn't want to see your dad caught in the crossfire. And then he said he'd see me on the ground."

"Why didn't you talk to me about this before you called him?" asks Cameron, his voice even softer, his expression … conflicted. Perhaps a little bit hurt, perhaps a little bit angry. Its hard to see on him, Cameron being Cameron, but with Morgan watching so carefully, and them having been close for quite awhile, it can likely be read. He shakes his head slowly, "We've never asked of eachother to fall in line and think the same things, but… you know what I told him. I meant it. I mean it. If I can find a way to be alone with him, I'm going to kill him. She died because of him. I want justice." Revenge? Perhaps more that. "I wouldn't have tried to stop you from doing what you think is right. But you should have talked to me first. No democracy. The Council still in charge. Jaha still in charge. The man responsible for mom's death, he gets off scot-free and maintains power."

Morgan shakes his had. "No. I told him to dissolve the Council. I wouldn't have them still in charge, you know that. I still want Kane dead. But Jaha… He can step down once things are settled. Maybe after winter is over. They can't afford the fighting a power struggle will cause. Look what's going on with us in the camp and none of us have guns. I don't trust Kane. And obviously, neither does Jaha." He sits up and runs his hand over his hair. "He's going to do whatever he wants anyway, Cam. But if he's really serious about making things better, about getting rid of the old Council and stepping down - eventually if not right now - he will. And if he's not serious, nothing I said will matter."

Morgan admits "I didn't expect him to agree."

"Well, that's something." Cameron's voice still sounds a little bit angry, maybe bitter, too, but he sighs and lays his head down on the cot, "I think this just means he was never serious about it, anyways. He was never going to give up power." He lifts his free hand up and rubs at his face, "Fine. Perhaps a new Chancellor election the day everyone comes down wasn't the best idea in the world. I still think you should have talked to me first. Didn't you trust me to let you do what you thought was right? I've never asked you to sacrifice your beliefs for mine."

"I trust you completely." Morgan tells Cam. "It just wasn't something I planned. It was only the talk we were having with Grey that made me decide to go talk to him." And just like that he went and demanded that the Chancellor come talk to him. "Also… You remember what we talked about at the cave? What we'd do if someone was stealing food? I don't know. I wanted to hear what he'd say about when I yelled at him." Not that he actually yelled.

Sighing, Cameron reaches a hand up and slides it along Morgan's neck, tugging him back down to a laying position. "I'm not going to lie and say I'm happy you did it, and maybe I was wrong to expect him to dismiss the council /and/ resign— or die in space— all at once, right when they come down… so I understand that much, but." He shrugs a shoulder, "I don't /like/ it. Fuck, Morgan, I want that miserable son of a bitch to *die*. I don't want him to suffer, I'm not a sociopath, but I want him to *stop being* so bad it makes my teeth ache from clenching my jaw whenever someone says his name."

Morgan lets himself be pulled down, looking a little relieved by it and resumes his previous position. "I almost think he might have done what he said he was going to do." he says quietly. "But if he does none of it, we'll know he can't be trusted no matter what he says. I did say he should put one of us on the new Council." The hand on Cam's chest slides up to his shoulder to squeeze it. "I do know how you feel. I blame them all." And he did want them to suffer. "But you have your dad left. You have to make sure he's okay."

After a few moments, Cam's hand resumes the light tracing of Morgan's skin, "Do you, really? I find that… incredulous. The idea that he'd listen to /us/. At the cost of his life." He sighs softly, and the tension that built when news was given fades back away, "You're right. I should think of him more. Its just… hard. Thinking of him without her. I don't know how he's going to survive. She was the rock that held us all together, you know." His voice is sad, but quiet: the sorrow is real, but for Cameron, the crying is over. "That'd be something. A delinquent on the Council. I'll believe it when it happens."

"I don't know." Morgan admits. "He confuses me. You know what his reputation is. It's why he's liked so much. Why would he agree to sacrifice himself? There's no point to lying about that." Tilting his head, he kisses Cam's chest. "You need to be there for him. And he'll be there for you. That's more important now than anything." Then he snorts softly. "Yeah, he doesn't sound like that was going to happen. But I didn't expect him to listen to me on any of it."

Shifting his hand, Cameron runs his fingers up along Morgan's neck, and then through his hair, kneading very lightly, "You're right." A pause, "We'll be there for each-other. Well, when we see each-other. I'm not planning on living in the Ark settlement, remember?" He sighs again, but this is a more a contented one, "He does have a popular reputation. I always thought it was bullshit, but, I suppose, I've always been… /political/. I get why the Ark was harsh, restrictive, but it didn't have to be *that bad*."

"No, it didn't." On that, Morgan can fully agree. He sighs softly though part of it is in contentment for his current position and Cameron's massaging. "I don't know Cam. A lot of things don't seem so black and white any more. Not when we can picture ourselves killing criminals who endanger our people."

"I suppose." Cameron didn't like the revelation of that thought the first time, and he's not any more comfortable with it now. It makes him reach his other hand over and slip between them, so his hand can rest against Morgan's chest carefully, feeling his heart beat there. "But what they did to Devin is inexcusable. Maybe, arguably— and I'm not willing to concede this point— you float the parents for having the second child, but the second child is *completely innocent*. Some things ARE black and white, Mor. Some things are."

"Not going to argue that." Morgan agrees. "That's just wrong, plain and simple. And did you ever wonder about the logic of it? Two parents only allowed to have one kid. That's not zero population growth, that's negative. How is that supposed to keep the race alive?"

Cameron pauses, thoughtfully, "I hadn't really thought about it, but let me put this question to you in a different way. We were supposed to be up there another two centuries, at least, right? Do you think the life support failure was a surprise to the Council— the Council who answers to no one and is shourded in secrecy. Maybe the reason we have a negative population growth is because the life support has been failing for longer then we even imagined it had, and they've just been *lying* to us this entire time, covering it up. So the Ark, maybe, has been steadily losing its ability to support our numbers. How many kids died to hide their secret?"

Morgan thinks about that a moment though not very long. "Makes sense. And what are the odds that the one system that started breaking down was life support? Probably lots of them are failing which makes it all the more important we learn to live without them. NOt that I want to throw away everything we know." he's quick to add since some people seem to think he wants to go native. "We need to remember how to do surgery. And build solid houses. And make batteries. And anything else we can manage. We just can't depend on any of it that requires complicated machines and electronics."

"I'm not willing to give up on machines and electronics, though I know it will be awhile before we can start replacing those with new components, and they will degrade in the interim. But we can restart real industry now that we're on the planet, now that everything we use isn't a zero-sum game. Theres fuel, metals, plastics, all of it in the ground, and it'll take time to rebuild the industrial base, but we *can* do it." Cameron nods his head against Morgan, though he does give the other young man a bit of a hug as he does, "I can do certain botany tasks without lab equipment, but not everything; but that kind of lab equipment isn't that advanced. It can last a long, long time with minimal repairs. Its not like I'm thinking we're going to be doing genetic engineering down here or anything like that. I mean I know we'll lose some things, but if we keep the *knowledge* alive, then sooner or later we'll advance enough to make use of it again. Technology is a ladder, and every person that climbs, climbs on the shoulders of who came before. The Ark was different, it had no resources that were not 100% in use at all times, and no ability to get new resources."

"I think mining is a little more complicated than you're assuming." Morgan says, sounding amused. "But sure, eventually we'll get back to where we were. Someone's grandchildren maybe. Me? I'll be happy if we can hang onto plumbing. I'm tired of pissing into a hole in the ground."

"I'm a botanist, not a miner." Cameron's voice is light at that though, and his check shakes with a chuckle, "Did you see their bathroom? It has hot water, they have /soap/. These … /barbarians/ have more civilization then we, the scions of the most intelligent people of old earth, do. Well, those scions who were tossed out like trash." Even though that sounds harsh, there's no heat in his voice at all.

Morgan lifts his head to look at Cam. "Soap I heard. Hot water? We have to figure out how they do that, assuming it's more than just heating water in a big vat or something. And definitely how to make soap. And towels. And mattresses. And pillows. I can live without a computer if I can sleep well."

"I think its just heating water in a basin, I haven't /used/ it yet, just heard third hand. That means they're smarter about placing their village, so they don't have to haul water over miles and then have it be so precious you can't waste it in a bath." Cameron sighs, wistfully, and takes a moment to lean in to brush his lips against Morgan's when he has the chance for a brief, warm kiss. "Hell, I know how to make a mattress. Make cloth and fill it with the feathered fury of ten thousand ducks." He cracks a wide, dimpled grin. "I can live without a computer but I'd /kill/ for a notebook."

Morgan smiles and lies back down. "We need to move to the caves. The fresh water there is the best reason possible. Then we can have lots of hot water. You know, when you talk to your dad next, you should tell him they shouldn't land near the dropship. They'll have the same problems we do."

"I'll talk to him,… or maybe.. I'll talk to Jaha. I think maybe we have something more to say to each-other. Dad's just a botanist, he has sway in the Agrotech departments, but not command." Cameron purses his lips, "And apparnetly Jaha is taking our calls. But I doubt they'd intentionally land near the dropship, but you're right. Maybe I'll offer to scout out territory and find a better place /for/ them to land. I'm a better scout then I am a botanist, by sheer accident, and I'm getting the hang of the woods, and I know enough about nature and earth-skills — even though I'm not an expert, its enough — to know good territory for a settlement from bad."

"Speaking of territory… Wherever they land, it's going to be someone's territory. We should probably try to get a map or something of where everyone lives. I want to negotiate more for us than for the Ark at the summit but we should make sure they're welcome, or at least tolerated, when they come down." Morgan tells Cameron.

Cameron nods slightly, "That's a good point— but to a certain extent, I'm not sure if it will be entirely controllable." He hesitates, takes a small breath, and says without tensing up: "You saw how Mom came down, and I doubt our entry was planted exactly where they wanted us to be. I don't think they have a solid grasp of /aiming/ the descent vehicles."

Morgan hmmms. "It might not be the aiming that's the problem. We did have that map, remember. And we seemed to be about where we should have been. It's the landing that was a problem. In both cases." he adds quietly, squeezing Cam's shoulder. "More breaking down I guess. Whichever, end results is the same."

"I'll call Jaha." decides Cameron, his sigh … resigned, but he goes back to caressing and massaging Morgan's scalp. "Fucking pig licking son of a mutant." Even if it can't be seen, one can almost hear his grin if not his dimples, "I have to get that out of my system before I get out there." he pauses, and adds, "I'm not going to lie and say I wouldn't have survived without you being with me, Mor— but its been /really good/ having you with me. Everything is better having you with me."

"Course you would have." Morgan agrees. "Having you around has made this easier for me too, Cam. Since it's working out well, we should probably keep doing this whole boyfriend thing for a while. Only makes sense, right?"

Cameron can't help but smile more, a quiet laugh shaking his chest, "I think this experiment has been an unqualified success so far. Further data is required, but evidence at this stage indicates a high probability for a positive adaption and evolution. I admit to trying out every possible word I can think of besides 'boyfriend' and finding them *all* unsatisfactory, so I give up on that being a lost cause. Partner is generic, lover sounds like we're old,… I could go on but the point is, no." At that, he snickers openly.

Morgan mm-hmms softly. He's quiet for a while and it becomes obvious he fell asleep.

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