Our Disgusting Little Friends
Jan. 19, 2022, 8 p.m.
Arx - Ward of the Compact - Saving Grace Hospital - Operating Theater
Comments and Log
(OOC)The scene set/room mood is now set to: The focus of the room is a blackboard with drawings of the disgusting creatures to be discussed today; the maggot and the leech. Both are blown-up several times to show hooked mouths where flesh and blood are ingested. A rolling cart with sample jars of each sits alongside, where little creatures float in viscus fluid.
1 Templar Knight guards arrives, following Udell.
6 Grayson House Guards have been dismissed.
Wyla, a small wisp of an assistant have been dismissed.
Udell enters the operating theater, smiling as he looks about at all of the displays, every so often just slightly frowning at what appears to be a tear in his cassock.
6 Grayson House Guards have been dismissed.
Wyla, a small wisp of an assistant have been dismissed.
Linx, a beautiful Persian cat with a green collared bow, Dacian arrive, following Thesbe.
Sonnet checks dexterity and stealth at daunting. Sonnet is successful.
|[Lady Commander Assistant Guild-Master Eirene Riven stands at the podium at the center of the theater, where often a surgical bed would be with the patient on display. Instead there is a blackboard with illustrations of maggots and leeches, and all their hooky little mouths, and a rolling cart with specimen jars of each. She wears her aeterna robes of office indicating her rank as a Master of the medicinal sciences.
Her three children sit in the audience, eating cookies and mumbling about how gross the drawings are.
She waits for the crowd (such as it is) to be seated. \\
Keely was already here, almost inappropriately early, sitting in the frontmost row. She beams at Eirene as she stands there behind the podium, sitting forward just a bit as if to physically communicate her attentiveness despite her utter lack of knowledge on the subject at hand. Or perhaps because of it! And most of all she seems to be doing all she can to not look at the drawings.
Udell has also found a seat in the front, although his attention and interest are very apparent given how far forward in seat his head is craning. He offers a smile to those he manages to recognize within the crowd and after fussily smoothing out his clothes and fidgeting with the badge conspicuously pinned to his chest, returns his attention to Eirene and the host of displays on offer.
Sonnet is sitting on one of the iron poles that hold up one of the many lanterns in this room. She's got her elbow on one knee, her chin propped up on that hand. Silent. watching, almost with what seems to be interest in the lecture that's about to occur. But no one knows when she got there.
Thesbe arrived with a rather tall merchantly looking man in tow, Dacian, who seemed to be accompanying Thesbe with the crook of his arm. They were conversing as the entered the spacious theater. She'd politely dip her head in acknowledgement to the others before finding a seat for her and her friend. Cerulean blue eyes, that would could quickly recognize for being of the Blackshore bloodline scanned the room curiously.
Seeing the small audience, she doesn't bother booming out her words, but instead talks at a more normal level. "A small cut on Mitchell's left heel turned into a blue-foot infection two inches wide and down to the bone. Another wound developed in her right foot, owing to dry, cracked skin. Doctors tried every cream and salve but nothing worked. Then they got her maggots. 600 live maggots wriggling inside the wound on her left foot, 400 in her right, where they were sealed in gauze and left for two days. Over the course of 10 such treatments, wounds that months of months of conservative procedures could not mend began to heal."
She stops as she spies Sonnet up on the lantern post and gives an 'okay, roll with it' sort of tuck to her head and then a lifted hand in greeting. She plucks up a jar of wriggling white larvae and hands it to anyone brave enough to take it.
Already look queasy, Keely presses on a smile, her delicate hands gripped a bit into her skirts. She glances aside to where Udell is to offer a smile of greeting, perhaps to distract herself. She absolutely does not reach for the larvae.
Thesbe shrugs, looks to Dacian and smirks before making way gracefully to Eirene who presented the wiggling larvae. She cleared her throat, "I will." she states showing no worries about holding the creature. A lady, sure, but she definitely wasn't squeamish and probably have seen a lot worse then this.
Dacian glanced from the woman speaking to the topic of her conversation. While his expression seemed to remain steady, his eyes seemed to dance with curiosity as they landed on the jar. He shifted such focus to Thesbe as she moved forward, and with that he relaxed just a tad more into the space where he sat. He remained silent, but watched with clear curiosity of what was to come.
Thesbe is met with a firm nod of approval as Eirene hands the jar over. "Maggots are useful because they help remove dead tissue and expose healthy tissue, a process called debridement. Maggots eat dead and infected tissue, turning it into a mush they can then slurp up.
"We use the larvae of the green-bottle or 'sheep' fly, as they prefer to consume dead tissue over healthy. Life cycle begins when adult female flies deposit clusters of eggs (about 2000-3000) on animal corpses, infected wounds of humans or animals and excrement, where they hatch in 18-24 hours. We breed them specifically for this purpose in the hospital to ensure they are incubated in clean sources. Corpses. Maggots have a conical body form (i.e. extending to a point). The anterior or head-end is pointed with the posterior end being more blunt. The posterior end of the maggot often has two dark areas that can be mistaken for eyes." She motions to the board where the segmented creature is drawn out in greater detail.
Watching intently, Eirene's gesture of greeting causes Udell to inquisitively look up, noticing Sonnet perched upon the post. He is unable to keep from chuckling at this as he shakes his head while quietly remarking almost to himself, "Spider, if you fall and break your neck..."
Keely's smile catches his somewhat now manic attention span and he flashes one in reply before realizing that now the jar of wriggling things is now being passed about.
Sonnet mumbles from her perch, "They are also delicious fried, with crisp vegetables." Her eyes are intent on the demonstration, however, otherwise silent and not moving.
Thesbe offers a small smile and a look of curiosity as she inspects the jar when it's handed to her. She may have once or twice scared her twin sister, Iseulet with a maggot or two chasing after her as children. The blonde stood there in respect as Eirene spoke and then turned to the board. "Hmm~" there was a soft hum from her before raising the jar presenting it to anyone else that wanted to have a look-see.
Keely's dark eyes slowwwwly lift in Sonnet's direction, and she gives a slight start, eventually offering a slight smile in her direction as well. She then turns her focus back to Eirene, doing her utmost to keep her young face schooled as she sights the bugs. She pipes up, "How... do you ask them to come back out when they are done doing their job? What if they go very far inside?" Her features are looking a little pale.
"A good question," Eirene says to Keely. "They only eat skin and muscle that's gone 'bad'. Sick. They won't eat anything that's normal and healthy. And we just scrape them off when we're done."
The doctor continues: "Before application, the wound is cleaned with Mangata's waters and then the larvae are dumped onto the wound and wrapped in clean bandages so they don't wiggle away. Their wrapping must be light enough to allow air in and for drainage of liquified tissue. They're left on for 3-4 days to do their work.
At first, it smells a little funky. Then the smell go away as you start to see a... slimy sort of surface texture. This texture is actually very helpful in keeping the wound from going red and inflamed. After the 3-4 days the maggots are generally 'full' so we dispose of them to bring in a fresh batch of 'em and continue the treatment.
This has been very effective for pressure ulcers also called bed sores, venous stasis ulcers, blue-foot ulcers, non-healing traumatic and post-surgical wounds, burns, and gangrene or skin-rot. The drawback is the patient has to sit there and endure the writhing mass of maggots nibbling away at their body." Yes, she's deliberately going for the gross out, to amuse her children and herself.
"Any questions about our wriggly little friend?" She opens up the floor to questions.
Realizing she has spoken out of turn, Keely bobs a small and appreciative nod to Eirene's reply, smiling a bit sheepishly and sitting a little lower in her seat.
Thesbe visibly shudders at the last part before offering the jar back up to Eirene, if anyone didn't come to see for themselves. "Thank you for allowing me a closer look." she says before going to take her seat. "Is there any risk of infection from the actual maggots themselves? or do the risks outweigh the pros?"
Sonnet glances at Keely but says nothing, going back to listening to Eirene. Or. Watching the maggots. It's hard to tell.
Answering Thesbe, Eirene replies, "Only if you leave them on too long and they 'mature'. That or using those who haven't been properly raised and washed first. I wouldn't recommend plucking them off a dead animal and ploping them on your skin unless it's an emergecny."
Thesbe smiles sweetly for Eirene's reply. And then whispers to Dacian.
Something Eirene has said has actually captures Keely's interest by its own merit, rather than her mere desire to be present and supportive. Her head cants faintly to one side, and she ventures a quick look toward the jar, holding her breath for the duration of the glance.
Dacian simply watched the exchange, his eyes never leaving the jar as it was examined and explained. His face shown a mystery of thought, and it wasn't until Thesbe whispered in his ear that he turned his head slightly to return the action.
Eirene puts the jar back and draws out a leech jar. Time for part two. The slithery little things float in their jar of brine.
Eirene holds up the jar and then extends it to the crowd once again. "Leeches can be used to treat everything from headaches to ear infections to hemorrhoids. They draw out an abundance of Sanguine humors (commonly called blood) from the body in a relatively painless fashion. We routinely use them to drain blood from swollen faces, limbs and digits after reconstructive surgery.
They are especially useful when reattaching small parts like ears, where blood clots can easily form in veins. If the clots are severe, the tissues can die -- drowned in an overabundance of sanguine humor. The overbuildup of Sanguine Fluid a.k.a. blood can be fatal."
Sonnet mumbles from her perch, "They have 32 brains."
Keely checks composure at hard. Botch! Keely fails completely.
Thesbe checks composure at easy. Thesbe is successful.
Thesbe shakes her head silently as Eirene pulls out the leeches. There are some things Thesbe just doesn't like and leeches are one of them. Growing up along Blackshore with the waters nearby, it was hard to do anything near it without getting a leech on your butt just for going in the water. She moved uncomfortably in her seat but was outright grossed out.
Keely's face begins to grow more and more pale as Eirene speaks. Then Sonnet pipes up, and her dark eyes grow impossibly wide. She lifts a handkerchief that she had been concealing in her lap, pressing it to her lips in attempt to obscure some of her face, gagging several times behind the fabric and pressing her watering eyes closed. Her assistant has to come over with a fan, seeming concerned that the sheltered princess will swoon entirely-- and she looks close. But she also seems, for some reason, determined to stay, and after she recovers she returns her focus to Eirene, still hiding the lower half of her face, passive mortification etched in her visible features.
Dacian glanced up to the mumble, a soft exhale from the man all he offered before his attention shifted. The squirming next to him by Thesbe can with the smallest of smiles, and a quick word in her ear as he once more listened intently to Eirene.
"I... did not know that," Eirene says in a slightly puzzled way as she looks up at the perched elf. "Awful lot of brains for something so slithery," she continues. She looks at Keely's near-swoon and asks, "Did you want to go? You don't gotta stay, Princess. You braved the maggots, and that's more than most people."
Udell sees the leech jar and his eyes crinkle up as if someone seeing a very old friend after an years-long absence. Upon hearing Sonnet, he starts to chuckle once again and says while lifting his head, "They need that many."
"I am perfectly fine, Lady Riv-- Eirene, please forgive the interruption," comes Keely's wavering, muffled voice from behind soft aeternia. She sits a little lower yet in her seat, and takes more of a listening-and-not-looking approach from here on out.
Sonnet nods to Udell. "I didn't know it either. I only discovered it on a very large one that I discovered this." She holds out her arms. "The size of two wagons. They also have six hearts and many pouches to store blood. Very useful."
Thesbe wrinkles her nose to Dacian as he whispers in her ear. A pout and embarrassed look quickly graced her lips before she crossed arms, still listening to Eirene.
"Yes, one would think they need that many brains, to find themselves always when and where they are wanted the least.", Udell opines to Sonnet with a warm smile, his gaze falling to Eirene as he leans forward with rapt attention.
Oh, Sonnet. Keely's eyes flutter closed, and she focuses on breathing deeply to avoid making (more of) a scene.
A leech has a rear suction cup that helps it move and cling to a host. The front suction cup has three sharp jaws that make a Y-shaped bite. It apparently has 32 brains shoved in there, if she's correct. I've killed giant centipedes so a giant leech is only... well, disgusting and would make sense to exist...I wonder how much blood it could hold...
On that horrific thought, she pauses and continues, "A standard leech can feed for 30 minutes to 6 hours or more, taking in several times its body weight. In addition, leech saliva is made up of a substance which helps to numb pain, reduce swelling and keep blood flowing. Leech saliva also contains chemicals that prevent blood clotting, so a wound might bleed for hours after the leech is removed. Depending on wound size, a doctor might apply anywhere from one to six leeches to stimulate blood and move it into areas where blood might not be pooling correctly, like a reattached finger. (Provided the finger's not entirely severed, mind you, we're not magic workers) Otherwise we use them to remove excess sanguine humor from the body.
Sonnet goes quiet, her eyes now on Eirene, her expression thoughtful.
Thesbe says, "You can hurt it with fire! They come off just like that" Thesbe finally says in retort.. Yes fire.. "Just from experience." she says softy, slunking down in her seat."
Sonnet checks dexterity and stealth at daunting. Sonnet is successful.
Dacian glances to Thesbe once more at her outburst, then over towards the others present as if to watch their reactions. He seemed incredibly interested in what Eirene had to say, his gaze returning to her soon after it left.
On Thesbe's mention of experience, Eirene nods to her. "
Leeches are commonly found in swamps or marshy areas, or fresh water, so you won't find them in the icy Redrain territory but we get plenty in the Lyceum or in the Isles. But like maggots, we breed them specifically for medical purpose. And the poor interns who get stuck with feeding duties -- I"M KIDDING.
"Any questions about our slimy friend?"
Scoot. Scoot. Scoot. Keely scoots until she is settled on the bench beside Udell, turning her head to murmur something faintly, gaze flitting up to Eirene and very much not the leeches.
Thesbe shakes her head quickly! Nope.. nope and nope. There was a sigh that escaped Thesbe's lips from whence Eirene said they were plenty in the Isles and Lyceum. She definitely knew that for sure.
Dacian says, "How does one remove them without fire, assuming they don't wish to simply tear them off? I imagine that if they are used for such things, there must be easier ways than pressing a hot poker or torch to it." He paused for a moment, his curiosity carrying his voice once more. "And if not the interns, how does one feed a growing bunch of the creatures?""
Udell shakes his head at Eirene's inquiry, looking to Keely with a smile as she scooches closer to his seat.
Turning to Dacian, Eirene replies, "You gently pull them off, using a small little flat turner - like in the kitchen, to slide between their mouth and the skin. Do not yank them, it will tear the sucker off. Then we apply bandages to keep the wound from oozing blood, since the saliva is a blood thinning anti-coagulant." She grins as she gives the legit answer, "Fresh animal liver, and animal's blood we get from butchers."
Dacian gives a nod in thanks to the reply provided by Eirene, seeming more than happy with the response before he returned to simply listening and watching.
"In short, these disgusting creatures, when applied by a clever physician or healer, can prevent longer-term damage from occurring and provide great medical advantage in the healing of traumatic wounds and humor imbalance. I hope this has proven an informative lecture and may open your mind to the modern application of scientific medicine." Eirene looks up to see if Sonnet has any additional nuggets of fascinating trivia but the Nox has vanished. Again.
Thesbe looked to Dacian and shook her head then whispered to him. She then looks to Eirene and politely dips her head in thanks. "Thank you." she says softly.
Keely lifts both gloved hands, giving emphatic applause to Eirene as she finishes, a bolstered smile finding her lips. "Oh, well done, my lady," she enthuses. "How very informative."
Dacian nodded along with Thesbe's thanks, though he tipped his head to listen to the woman whispering to him. A glance to her, and he would glance over her expression for a moment before he responded just as softly.
Thesbe is overheard praising Eirene.
Keely is overheard praising Eirene: 6
Dacian is overheard praising Eirene.
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