"We tried to be better, but we aren't. I don't think anyone could last more than a week here if they weren't willing to do bad things." - Alba Reyes

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Being a degenerate is okay these days
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Jae kept his teeth gritted as Vanessa pulled his hand around; as much as it hurt, she was doing a pretty good job of taping his fingers by his judgment at least, and there was no point in complaining about how someone was helping you when they could have just left you in the first place. "Thanks." Jae returned the tape to his first-aid kit when Vanessa tossed it back and set about digging for the wipes and adhesive bandages. He located some alcohol pads too and took one to clean the slash on his face.

The alcohol stung, making him hiss quietly, but it was definitely better than getting an infection down the line. Once that was taken care of, Jae tossed the used pad aside and opened the wipes to clean the rest of his face off. Vanessa talked as he did so, and he paused for a moment to consider his response. It sounded like she wasn't about to run off and leave him, which was nice. He didn't feel like being alone right now. On the other hand, there was his knee.

"I don't know exactly how bad my knee is, if it's dislocated or what. It hurts like a bitch, but I think I could walk fine if I had a brace or a crutch or something. I walked on it some to get over here before it... well, quit." There wasn't anything in the first-aid kit that would help with that, as far as he could tell, unless they tried taping his knee too. Would that work?

And right, they both had people they wanted to find. What either of them would do after that, he wasn't sure. Jae shrugged in response to Vanessa's other question and went back to cleaning the smeared blood and makeup off his face so that he could bandage up his cheek. "Plan A is mostly 'find friends, make sure they don't do anything stupid'. I haven't thought any further ahead yet. Not breaking anything else would be a good step to add in, I guess."

He dropped the used wipes on the sofa next to him and went for the butterfly bandages next. The cut Alvaro had given him was shallow, but it stretched from the bridge of his nose almost to his ear, all across his left cheek. It took more than one bandage to cover it. Not nearly as bad as his knee or his hand, but much more noticeable.

Not even an inch higher, and he'd have lost his eye, Jae remembered. He grimaced, but quickly had to smooth his expression again when the action pulled at the half-applied bandages.

Once he'd finished dressing the cut to the best of his ability, he looked back at Vanessa. He felt oddly exposed with his makeup gone and the bandages prominently drawing attention to his injury. "How do I look?"
"Art enriches the community, Steve, no less than a pulsing fire hose, or a fireman beating down a blazing door. So what if we're drawing a nude man? So what if all we ever draw is a nude man, or the same nude man over and over in all sorts of provocative positions? Context, not content! Process, not subject! Don't be so gauche, Steve, it's beneath you."
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