*Tonks looks up from where she is lying in front of the fire and walks over to sniff at Amby, Eternal quietly closes the door, leaning against it like he’s afraid to get any closer to her*
*glances around and sighs*
*grabs the air and pulls open the door to his tent*
D-don’t…I don’t want to think about it………….
*shuffles around to the front of the tree but keeps his distance*
Still Kodak. Same old Kodak. A…a god is a difficult thing to change.
I just, um, I don’t…like people touching me and I tend to…push. People…away a little bit…
And I feel bad about it but it’s just…it’s not…
*breathes deeply and stays behind the tree, watching her*
I…yeah, I know…you just…you s-scared me…
I haven’t seen you in a hundred years, it’s…the last time I saw you, you weren’t exactly…young…
*yelps in shock and scrambles behind a tree*
"Heh, I suppose that’s one way of looking at it," he says, going over to flop down into his own chair, pulling out his pipe. It lights with a spark of blue flame, and the smoke that comes from it immediately disappears, as does the smell; one of the improvements Ghost made on it, of course. "I used to be so frail, it was.. it was pathetic. Took me the longest time to ever get even close to healthy. Heh, remember all that? That was all so long ago.."
He takes a few quiet puffs of his pipe, and his gaze is distant in his nostalgia.
"Sometimes I wish I couldn’t remember…" Eternal mutters, reaching for the coffee again and taking a small sip,
"It just makes things a lot harder." He drinks a little bit more and sighs, "I think…I want to be at home, in my valley. That might—that might help me. Thanks for the coffee, Ghost, and the healing. I…I might be back. Later. Thanks, brother." He smiles faintly and gets shakily to his feet,
"Until next time…"
He frowns down at the scars and his own memories return, the nightmare of seeing his best friend hung up with chains, his body invaded with all the contraptions. He remembers being dragged to Eternal’s chamber, being tied up in front of him and being whipped until he lost consciousness. He remembers it all.
He hates it.
He hates what happened and oh, what he would give to prevent it from ever having happened. But he can’t. That’s not how it works.
Ghost lowers his hands until they’re hovering over the markings, and, speaking in an ancient tongue of an unknown world, the guardian tries to relieve whatever pain he can. His marking pulses a deep violet, as do his hands—patterns like circuitry have spread all the way down to his fingertips, and he squeezes his eyes right as he works.
A few moments pass and Ghost finds himself much more weary than before, and has to stop himself. He leans on the back of the chair, and gently taps his brother’s shoulder,
"I did all I could, pal," he says. "I hope that helped some. I ain’t as good as you are with all the Life Force stuff, but I hope I did you some good."
Eternal relaxes with a heavy sigh as Ghost lets the healing seep into him. His fingertips twitch and he slowly, ever so slowly, pushes himself upright and tugs his shirt back over his head as quickly as he can.
"It helped. Thanks, Ghost." Without looking up he starts doing up his vest. Without his gloves on, the ragged scars on his arms are visible. There are small dotted scars where needles had been inserted into his skin and even a few long, jagged ones where said needles had been torn out. However he quickly pulled his gloves on, covering them up, and leaned back in his seat.
"Thanks again." He murmurs, slumping down in his chair, "Heh, it’s…kind of funny isn’t it. Nearly a hundred years ago, our places were reversed, weren’t they. I…I guess that’s where this timeline is, isn’t it…"
Ghost places a hand on his to hold it steady, and he smiles at his friend in hopes of calming him, of helping him.
"I haven’t just ‘gotten over it’ either, Eternal. Listen, we.. we can’t forget that. It’s impossible. It’s a part of who we are, even if it is terrible. Do you remember what I always say? What do I always tell you? What’s passed is past, no use dwelling on it. We can’t forget, but we can try and move on. Learn from it. I’m not saying it’s easy. Trust me, it’s hard. I have the nightmares, too. But I try not to think on it."
He smiles meekly again, and takes the coffee cup gently from his friend’s hands and sets it on the table in front of him. Ghost stands then, and goes behind Eternal’s chair,
"Now, how about we look at your back, huh? I can try and heal it for you? Does that sound okay? Will you allow me?"
Eternal makes a small noise and clenches his hands in the empty air a couple of times. He swallows hard and nods slowly. With fumbling fingers he undoes the buttons on his vest, peels off his gloves, and pulls his shirt over his head. Then he carefully leans over and stretches his back out.
Over his back marking, all frosted blue for the winter, there are numerous scars. They’re gnarled and his skin is bunched up and raw looking. Lances of knotted flesh and twisted circles where needles and tubes had been stuck into his body and withdrawn again. It’s no wonder he trembles and shakes.