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First-Aid

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Mary's still shivering in spite of the sweater Kono loaned her, and the blanket pulled up to her chin. She knows it's from shock, but that doesn't make it stop.

Her head aches like nothing she's ever felt before. Actually, if she's honest, every part of her aches, down deep into her bones.

You need to go to the hospital. Steve did forceful really well, but Mary wasn't having any of it. She didn't want any distance right now. Didn't want to be out in the open and vulnerable. Not yet.

No.

You probably have a concussion, you're showing signs of shock--

They can't do anything more at a hospital than you can do for me, she shot back, lips twitching a little when Kono snorted. By the time Steve whirled around to glare at her, Kono had her back turned to them, fiddling with something or other on the computer. Seriously. Just let me clean up, and get some rest. Please, Steve.

He gave in, but Mary knew from the grim set to his mouth that he wasn't happy with her.

She shifts now, trying to uncurl a little, willing the shivers to ease up. Outside Steve's office someone's running something through the shredder, and the noise settles hard into Mary's head, pushes the pain a little higher. She wrestles with the blanket until she can sit up, grabbing for the trash can Steve set beside the couch earlier.

She doesn't hurl, but it's a near thing, and the sudden change from prone to upright doesn't help much. She's still sitting there, not entirely sure her stomach's under control, when Kono pushes the door open and pokes her head in.

"You okay?"

Mary starts to say yes, to lie and say she's fine, but then her traitorous head shifts, turns, until she's shaking it 'no'. Kono frowns at her and steps further into the room, letting the door swing shut softly behind her. Steve pulled the blinds earlier; with the door shut it's very dim in the room. Mary hears more than sees Kono approach, and then the couch dips ever-so-slightly as she sits.

"C'mere," she says softly, hands tugging until Mary tips gently. There's a pillow on her lap, and Kono herself is warm, her hands careful but precise when she pulls the blanket up and strokes Mary's hair back from her face. "When I was fifteen, I wiped out pretty spectacularly, and ended up getting conked on the head with my board. I had this massive knot, and a headache the size of entire North American continent. Felt sick for days."

Mary makes a quiet noise to indicate she's listening, but really all she can focus on is how warm Kono is, and how she smells like coconut and saltwater, and how gentle her fingers feel, slowly and carefully stroking over Mary's hair.

"My mom made me tea and let me put my head in her lap. She kept the lights off, and let me rest, just like this. It didn't make my head hurt any less, but I felt better, you know?"

"Mmm." Mary does know. She thinks Kono has magic fingers, or something, because she swears she feels better than she did just five minutes ago. "Steve's gonna send me back to L.A.," she murmurs. "He hasn't said so, but I know he's going to."

"Probably be safer." Kono's voice is so low, calm and comforting, and Mary relaxes further against her, close to sleep with no warning.

"I don't want to go." She snuggles in a little, and sighs when Kono pets her, fingers easing over her jaw, her throat, her shoulder. "This is nice. Feels good."

Kono doesn't say anything, but Mary feels her breath, then the soft brush of lips against her forehead. Another soft brush of lips against her ear, and Mary turns just enough that the next one lands on her mouth. She winces – can't help it – when the pressure twinges where her lip's split, but it's there and gone in an instant, the warmth of Kono's tongue easing over it before disappearing.

"Rest," Mary hears, whisper-soft and all around her. "I'll stay here awhile."

The sound of Kono humming follows Mary into her dreams, keeping her safe and warm.

~fin~