DAMNED || LANDEL'S INSTITUTE

A Multifandom Asylum RPG


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Day 60: Patient Library (Third Shift)
but the lock will not open
poorexample wrote in damned
After handling two conversations that had been difficult for completely different reasons, Castiel had to admit that he felt weary. It was not a sensation that was new to him; between Izaya showing far too much interest in his kind and Ruby simply being who she was, some peace and quiet was what he craved.

As it turned out, he might have a chance at that, seeing how the Head Doctor had decided to give them a choice for where to go in the next shift. Sitting around and eating three times a day had always struck Castiel as inefficient, so he approved of the change. Despite that, he still took the brown bag when it was offered to him, as his appetite wasn't something he could control.

His first choice was the library, and it was something that the nurses permitted. That surprised him, as in his experience eating wasn't allowed in libraries. He could understand the logic: books were sacred. Reading wasn't his goal at the moment, though, as he'd been meaning to write out an account of his experience last night since the morning. Now, finally, he would have the chance.

Castiel picked out a table at the back of the large room, sitting down and setting his lunch off to the side. He'd gotten a few sentences written out thus far, which he studiously added to. He soaked in the quiet; it helped him focus, and he wrote.

[For Kratos.]

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Though Wizard Landel was seemingly back in charge again— and despite how awful he could be, the Scarecrow did want to believe that, but he wouldn't put it past the General to come up with a scheme to pretend everything was back to the way it had been— there were still changes to be made to the routine. Though it was just being given the option of where to go for lunch, it was still something different from the norm.

He wasn't about to complain, though- it gave him the opportunity to look into something he'd been meaning to for some time. Taking his sack lunch from the nurse (and he had to admit he did miss them, as they were far nicer than the soldiers), the Scarecrow headed for the library.

Though his middle grumbled from hunger, the former strawman took a moment to peruse the books that lined the shelves, keeping the sack curled in his hand. He was sure he recalled something on the board about a book being about Oz, and his curiosity wouldn't be satiated until he found it. Would it be like the movie, something that made it seem as though his entire life were nothing but some figment of the imagination? Or would it be a bit more tied to the truth?

Well, there was only one way to find out, wasn't there?

[Carter ♥]

Nothing like two good meals in one day to brighten up your spirits. Carter took comfort where he could, his optimism would permit no less. He entered the library with a smile on his face, wondering if there'd be any new books to compliment the delicious new food.

"Frank!" That was Frank, right? The guy he kept leading into injury. He should probably stop doing that.

Carter crouched next to him, an eager smile on his face. "Whatcha looking for?"

The Scarecrow jumped as the quiet atmosphere of the library clashed with someone calling his name rather loudly. He recognized the voice instantly, placing it as Sergeant Carter. He greeting his friend with a smile, glad to see he was still around. With the events of the night before, he'd thought the man might have run into trouble again. He did have a tendency to do that.

"Oh, Sergeant," he said with a nod in greeting. "I thought I would try to find a book here. I read about it on the board once, and it, well..." He came up with something that was close to the truth. "It sounded interesting. I believe it's called The Wizard of Oz. You haven't heard of it, have you?"

"Of course! I used to read it all the time when I was a kid. Never got a chance to see the movie but I heard it was real good."

Carter turned his firm attention to the bookcase, trying to hunt down that particular book. He enjoyed a good kid's book now and then, though comics were his primary childish joy. And Frank had always seemed a fun-loving kind of guy, so optimistic even when he'd gotten his arm all burned up. Now that was a man Carter could respect.

The answer he received was a surprise. "You've read it!?" he asked a bit loudly- a nurse at the doorway peered inside, pressing a finger to her lips as a reminder for him to keep his voice down. He nodded, waiting for her to walk away before he spoke again.

The Scarecrow looked around, as though Wizard Landel himself would be listening. Given the events of the last few days with the military, the former strawman wouldn't have been surprised. He got close to Carter, lowering his voice. "What's it like?"

Carter jumped back slightly at the shout. He hadn't been expecting such an intense reaction.

"It's...it's okay, I guess. It's a kid's book. I liked it." Not enough explosions and robots, but no icky kissing either. He didn't mind that the protagonist was a girl, he never paid attention to those kinds of things. She'd defeated the witch anyway. "Haven't you ever read it?"

He kept pawing through the books, giving Frank an occasional concerned stare out of the corner of his eye. "It's about this girl who gets sucked up in a tornado and lands in Oz, which is this weird magic world. And her house falls on a witch and kills it, and she gets this silver shoes and has to go to see the Wizard to find out how to get home."

The Scarecrow hung onto every word Carter said, as though he would find all the answers he'd been looking for since he'd arrived at Landel's in an explanation of the book. He didn't, of course, but that certainly didn't stop him from staring intently as he memorized the brief summary of the story.

"Silver?" he said so quickly that it almost cut Carter's explanation off before he got to the ending. "You mean Ruby, don't you?"

"Maybe? It's been a while since I read the book." And nothing on rockets in here, how disappointing. It was all just kids' stuff and poetry. Carter raised up on his knees to check the next shelf. "Anyway, so she follows the yellow brick road and she meets this scarecrow who wants a heart and a tin man who wants a brain and a lion who wants courage."

He squinted thoughtfully. "I think. Or maybe it was the other way."

"Oh, it was the Scarecrow who wanted brains!" the former strawman insisted, a degree of escalating concern in his voice. Just thinking about Oz and his adventures made him homesick, the thought of his friends managing without him a painful one. The idea that they'd not only made a movie about said adventures, but written a book and gotten all important parts wrong was distressing in some way, given that it was a story he was a part of.

He followed Carter to the next shelf, making vague gestures with his hands the entire way. "After all, what good would a heart do for the Scarecrow when he wasn't made with a brain to use it? And the Tin Man wanted a heart because the smith never gave him one."

"Yeah! Yeah, that was it." Carter paused and shuffled sideways on his knees to look at Frank with confusion. "Hey, if you know the book so much better than me, why do you need to find it?"

When you had such a wealth of knowledge around you, why look at dull old storybooks? The future was so much more beautiful and amazing than silly fiction about talking animals and walking scarecrows.

"I, well, I..." The Scarecrow fumbled over his words, suddenly unsure of what to do now that he was confronted about it. A part of him wanted to tell Carter the truth, and felt a little badly for hiding his name— and essentially who he was along with it; however, not everyone came from a place with scarecrows that talked, or scarecrows at all. It was easier to pretend to be someone else, sometimes.

"I saw the movie," he answered. Though it was the truth, it was only a half of it. "I wanted to know if the book was any different, or if they left some parts out. It's important that they get the whole story, you know."

"Oh."

It was a good enough answer, Carter supposed, even if it was a bizarre thing to get fussy over. "I never saw the movie. Do they go to the Emerald City and meet the Wizard, at the end of the road? And he tells them to go kill the other witch?"

He shoved a few more children's books aside. "And why aren't there any good science books here?" he complained, brow furrowed in annoyance. "It's all just stories. Now I have to wait until I go to Doyleton again to get more than the two I've already got." This was a pretty dumb library, in Carter's opinion. There weren't even that many children here to read the children's books.

The Scarecrow just nodded, a solemness coloring his features as he recalled not only his own adventures, but how they were depicted in the movie. He hadn't actually finished it because the end of night had come first; all he could do was hope it turned out about like the rest, as down as that had made him. They got most of the important parts, but to see someone who looked and sounded just like him was very surreal, and left him confused in a way he couldn't grasp.

He latched onto the change of topics, eager to pull his mind from his concerns. "Science books? What are those?"

The bucket of water bit had been a cop-out, in Carter's opinion. Of course Dorothy was a girl and couldn't use a gun or a sword or the more fantastical weapons he'd read about in his masculine-directed comic books, but a bucket of water? So anticlimactic.

Carter brightened. "Books about science. Chemistry and physics and space travel, that kind of thing. I have two of them in my room, one on rockets and one on space. I figure it's a good way to know what to expect when we get out of here."

"What to expect when we get out of here?" the Scarecrow repeated. He'd thought when they'd finally managed to escape that they'd go home, back to Oz or Kansas or wherever it was a patient came from; however, Carter made it sound like something else.

"Do you mean you think we won't go home, should we manage to find a way to bring down Wizard Landel?" he asked. As much as he enjoyed being human and learning about the world they came from, he wasn't sure he wanted to stay there forever. He had people who needed him, who depended on him! What would they do if he never came back?

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