0095: He Adores Electrodes

Ziggurat #3

“What’s happening to you during jumps isn’t normal. It could be dangerous.”
Her tone was sincere enough that Lamont merely looked her in the eye and nodded as he tucked a cigarette between his lips.

“Hell,” cursed Lamont, holding the kerchief to his nose. “Not again.”

“Again?” Rosemary asked, raising an eyebrow.

“Same sort of thing happened last time we jumped,” The newspaperman explained. “Only worse.”

“How was it worse?” Asked the medic.

“Nobody came to wake me up,” Lamont admitted.

Rosemary shook her head. “You’re not supposed to be sleeping. Just sort of—neutralized, I suppose it is.”

“You ain’t supposed to dream, either. I’ve been told.” Dabbing his nose one more time, he winced apologetically at the brightly blood-stained handkerchief before handing it back to Rosemary. As she took it from him, he noticed that the corner was monogrammed. 

“FHC,” Lamont read. He looked at her curiously. “Francis Howard Carter?”

Quickly, she stuffed it back in her pocket. “We should get you looked at,” she said, tossing her head.

“What do you mean, looked at?” Lamont asked.

“I mean that Doctor Faust should run some tests on you. Not now, but sometime.”

“What kind of tests?” Lamont pushed himself up on the thin cushion of his bunk and stood, with slight unsteadiness, to his feet.

The medic shrugged. “He’ll probably put electrodes on your head or something. He adores electrodes.”

“Well, who am I to deprive?” Lamont asked dryly, stepping to his desk and retrieving his cigarette case. “I’ll be sure to stop by. Earliest opportunity.”

“Seriously, you should,” Rosemary urged him, making her way toward the door. “What’s happening to you during jumps isn’t normal. It could be dangerous.”

Her tone was sincere enough that Lamont merely looked her in the eye and nodded as he tucked a cigarette between his lips. The young medic made an affirming little gesture with her hands and slipped into the hall.

“Be seeing you,” She mumbled.

Lamont lit the cigarette, took a long drag, and exhaled slowly, collapsing to a seat on the edge of his bunk. He dug his thumbs into his temples, which were throbbing with a sharp, lingering pain. “What is it with that damned fish?” He muttered to himself.

He desperately needed a cup of coffee. A good cup. Perhaps, after a month away, it was time to return to the command deck.

Next: Command and Control