Day 035: Medicating Cameron
Summary: In which Cameron has an accidental counseling session with Doc K, and she (whoa rightly) decides he needs some drugs.
Date: 2 7 2016
Related: None
Cameron Sarah 

Dining Hall

This is main dining halls on Level 5. It has an arched ceiling, the curve sweeping up almost immediately from the floor, giving it a low, half-cylindrical look. The room is constructed of three of these half-cylinders, jointed together by short hallways beneath arched buttresses. The walls are made of heavy concrete, but possess inset lights to illuminate the otherwise dim hall. Each portion of the dining room is laid out in the same manner:

Along the center line of the room is a pair of bright, tulip-shaped chandeliers. The back of the room is decorated in three stained-glass arches that look like they may have come from an old church. The glass is colored in blue and green shades with what appears to be a forest scene. Hanging from the ceiling at regular intervals are eight flags of United States' origins, including the old Thirteen Colonies flag. The room possesses several tables, most running parellel along the length of the room with one table running perpendicular before the stained glass windows.

The tables are done in high-class finery with ivory table runners, gold-rimmed china, and elegant centerpieces every three feet along the long tables.

Day 035

They have food, clean clothes, showers, all that they could want, right? Most of them are adapting pretty well to the Mountain. Cameron is not. One glance at him says the kid is not sleeping: the bags under his eyes make him look almost like he's been punched in the face a couple times, not to mention that his fairly pale complexion has taken on a pallor. Still, he's clean, and he's got a plate of food. He's… sorta staring at it. Pushing some food around. He's not really eating. Well. No. There, he takes a single, small bite. Its with obvious distaste that he chews it.

A woman in sensible clothing, sensible shoes and a shock of red hair stops next to the table where Max is sitting. "Hey there," she says gently, plate of some kind of sauteed tofu and broccoli in her hand. "Mind if I join you?"

Cameron looks up and stares at the woman for a moment, and he just looks… confused for a moment. "What?" He kind of gapes, but then finally what was said actually registers and he blinks a couple times to clear his head, "What? I mean, of course." He gestures, smiling weakly. Morganisnotdead. "Have a seat. This is your home, after all. I'm just a guest." He pauses, then adds, "I'm Cameron Scott. Artist. Scout. Botanist."

"You look tired, CameronScottArtistScoutBotanist," the woman says with a friendly smile, setting her plate down and taking a seat. She extends her hand. "Doctor Kirschenfeld, but most people call me Dr. K."

"I can't sleep." agrees Cameron with a slow nod, looking down at his food, pushing it around with his fork some more. He gets up the nerve to have another little bite. "When I sleep I have nightmares. Either…" Morganisnotdead. He doesn't say anything about that, so just shakes his head at first, "… or that the mountain is collapsing down on top of me, crushing me." He shivers, a look of near panic in his eyes for a moment before he struggles with it and shoves it back down. "Nice to meet you, Doctor K. My boyfriend's a doctor. Well, a medtech. He always calls me Cam." Morganisnotdead.

Dr. K nods, listening. "You've been through a lot. I can't even imagine how hard this has all been. This is a normal reaction to extraordinary stress," she says reassuringly, spearing a piece of broccoli with her fork.

"I'm just worried about Morgan. And…" Cameron shrugs slightly, "I'm claustrophobic. I always have been… I had a hard time living in the Ark. Then those two years in the Skybox, … I felt … safe for the first time in my life when we landed on the ground. Even though every day was a struggle to survive, I was free. I could walk in any direction I wanted and there was just fresh air and trees."

"A lot of you kids are worried about your friends in here. You bunch must all be very close," Dr. K notes. She nods sympathetically when he talks about his claustrophobia. "You sound like you have a lot of anxiety. I mean, I would too, if I'd been through half of what you'd been through." She nibbles on her broccoli thoughtfully.

Cameron nods his head slowly, "We're the One Hundred. The Council sent us down here with nothing, and we had to survive— and we did— because we stuck together. We're a family. We'd do anything to protect eachother, to help eachother." Well, most of them. "Morgan's probably out there looking for us right now." There's such desperate hope in his voice for a moment, "I wish there was some way we could try to contact the Ark survivors."

"Before you tell me any more, I feel that I should let you know that I am a psychiatrist and a counselor," Dr. K tells him, laying her fork down and picking up her napkin, belatedly spreading it on her lap. "I don't want you to feel that I've tricked you into telling me things, or that I'm judging you. But I can help."

Cameron blinks slowly, then furrows his brow. He looks uncertain for a long moment, but then shrugs, "That's fine." He shakes his head as well, "I don't really know if there's anything you can do to help, though. I just need to get out othere and find the survivors. I know your people are looking, and I appreciate that, but… I know my people. And I don't need a special suit to survive on the ground like… I forget his name, that guy said you guys do."

"If you want to come to my office to talk some time, just talk to me or one of the nurses for an appointment," Dr. K tells him, resting her hands on the table. "And, actually… There are some relatively benign, very effective medications to help you sleep. I can get you a prescription for something that can help. It won't make you feel dopey or drugged, it just will help take the edge off."

There's a moment of consideration as the medication is mentioned, and finally Cameron nods, "That… would be nice. Yeah. Thank you." He pauses, "Am I likely to dream? Because I really don't want to dream." Morganisnotdead. "But… I just don't really see the point. No offense. My… issues aren't … psychological." They totally are. "I love him, Doctor. And he's out there and I can't do anything to help him. And my Dad… I don't know if he survived the Ark coming down. That wasn't supposed to happen. The Ark was not supposed to come down. But it did… and it didn't crash. It landed. That means my Dad might be alive, and need help."

"All problems are psychological," Dr. K says matter-of-factly. "Our minds are how we perceive the world and interact with it. You've been through a lot of trauma." She thinks for a moment. "Actually, there is one drug that is very useful in reducing the nightmares of individuals with post-traumatic stress disorder. It was used Before, when soldiers would come back from war and would have nightmares. I'm sure your experience can't have been that different."

"We were in a war." agrees Cameron with a slight nod of his head, seeming to find this whole medication idea more and more appealing. "And though I… compartmentalize well." Usually. "It wasn't fun to kill those savages, and.. I think this last month can be pretty well defined as traumatic." He laughs, but there's no humor in it, but then he says more seriously, "I'm surprised you're not going on about how I need to move on and settle in. Stay. It seems what a lot of people want to do."

"It's not my job to give advice," Dr. K replies, giving him a small, sad smile at his bitter laugh. "My job is to help you find even ground, on your own terms."

At that, Cameron blinks slowly, "You sound like my mom." He frowns slightly, "She died… floating hell, how long ago? Three weeks? A little more." He frowns, "The Ark was going to cull three hundred and twenty people because they thought the ground wasn't surviable, that we had all died. She didn't believe it. So she came down. Got us a radio to contact them. And… she died. Right there. She's… buried. On the ground, now." There is grief in his features, but its kept tightly, tightly, tightly in control. Cameron is so bound up in pure will that he's not breaking down completely out of sheer refusal to do so. "All I have left in the world that I care about is Morgan and my dad."

"Maybe it would be a good idea to come talk to me in my office some time. No one else around, comfy couches, and I make a mean cup of mint tea," Dr. K says, reaching across the table to offer her hand, if he needs to take it.

There's some hesitation, but finally Cameron nods his head. He doesn't take the hand though, that would be an admission of weakness and he might lose it. "Okay." He eyes his food a moment, and forces himself to take a bite. That's an act of will, too. "I almost miss our Ark soy." he says, tone rueful.

Dr. K withdraws her hand and resumes eating her own meal. "You miss the things that are familiar and that mean home to you. Anyone would."

"The Ark and I… I have a hard time thinking of it as home. My claustrophobia wasn't so bad until I was in the Skybox, but it was still there. YOu can probably imagine, living in a space station doesn't feel totally dissimilar to living in an underground bunker." Cameron gestures around, but he does grin slightly, "Though to be fair you have better food and furnishings. The Ark was utilitarian to an absolute degree. Then again it also sustained twenty five hundred people for a century."

"Have you ever thought of keeping a journal?" the doctor asks, after listening intently to Cameron.

Cameron blinks a moment and shakes his head, "The Ark never had enough resources for people to have things like that. And I'd probably just draw in it." He grins a bit, "I have a problem resisting the urge to do art. But… why? Do journals help?"

"I find they help a lot of people, especially if they're going through a rough time with a lot of extreme emotions. Drawing in it would be just fine, but writing is also good." Dr. K thinks for a second. "I usually have a few in my office, and I'm fairly certain I do have a few spare ones there. If you decide you want that prescription, I'll send both down with a nurse to you before bed tonight.

Thoughtful, Cameron lifts a hand up to run through his hair— and then promptly pats it back into place. Cam's hair is always neat. "Yeah. The prescription would be good. I feel like I'm dying from lack of sleep. So… both? … Thank you." He frowns a little bit, "I still don't understand why you people are helping us."

"Because it's the right thing to do, Cameron," Dr. K says, gently but firmly, as she finishes her dinner. "I would like to think your people would do the same for us if the roles were reversed."

"I honestly don't know. We tried to make peace with the Grounders, to share our scientific knowledge with them— that was what we did on the Ark, preserve the knowledge of the old world— but they refused us, blamed us for the Exodus ship crashing into one of their villages." Cameron frowns a bit, shaking his head, "But we tried very hard to have peace. And… they're very afraid of you, you know. The Grounders. Trikru— tree people. Kongeda— coalition of the twelve clans. They're afraid of you. And they don't seem the afraid type. But, the President told us about how they started a war with you when you came out, and after our own war, I see no reason to disbelieve you. Its just…" He shrugs, "Its hard imagining anyone just helping someone else anymore. At least, someone who isn't one of us. The One Hundred."

"I can only imagine how hard it is. Here's something you can do, when things seem overwhelming: Look at the facts you know to be true. Those will help center and guide you." The redheaded doctor puts her napkin on her plate, standing up slowly. "The medicine I'm going to send you will help stop your brain from releasing adrenaline unnecessarily. That should help you sleep and should prevent most of your nightmares. You might feel dizzy the first night, but that usually goes away after the first day. Take it at night before you sleep."

Cameron nods his head slowly, "Thanks, Doctor K." He suddenly smiles, and for the first time its approaching what his usual smiles are— his dimples flash to partial effect. If this is happy, his smiles would be bright as the sun. "Yeah I imagine I don't especially need more adrenaline in my body. I think I've used up as much of that as I'll ever need, ever."

Dr. K returns the smile. "We'll talk soon. I'm positive a few good nights' sleep will do wonders for you." With that, she nods in farewell and heads off.

"Thanks… again." Cameron watches the Doctor take her leave with a slightly furrowed brow.

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