News From Belleau And A Haircut

Who: Morgenstern, Kathleen, Brissac, Christiane
Where: Medstation
What: News from Belleau Wood are discussed, Morgenstern gets a haircut and a serious conversation with Kathleen and later on there's a game of pebble-throwing which Christiane takes part in.

L'Eglise de Saint Boniface

Even in a place like this the war has left its marks, the once great windows of the church depicting the lord saviour have been blown to pieces. Some of the rafters from the roof are broken, and here and there holes from shells and rounds score the walls of the church. Where there once were benches for people to sit during sermons are now temporary tables upon where wounded soldiers and civilians can be seen. The moans and cries of the wounded never cease to stop, as they just keep coming in with every day that passes, a numberless throng. Nuns from the local abbey along with nurses runs along with blood stained rags trying their best to aid the doctors and field medics that works in here.
At first glance it might be hard to think that faith in god can still linger in a place so torn apart by the war as this, but the sheer compassion by those who work here makes up for the tarnished facade of the church.

It is currently dawn.

Morgenstern has done another rather nice recovery from wounds that were near fatal. He's sitting on his bed now, reading a paper and smoking a cigarette.

Kathleen arrives for her shift, looking a bit weary. She starts to make her rounds, mustering up a smile and some kind words for the soldiers she checks on. Eventually she comes to Morgenstern. "G'day Corporal," she greets him. Noting the paper, she asks, "What's the news?"

Morgenstern looks up at the nurse. His hair is in total disarray and somewhat wet so he's washed up recently. Green alert eyes studies Kathleen intently, then he smiles. "Good day, Nurse Campbell," he replies, remembering her name. "Oh, the Americans are fully in the war now. Heavy combat near Chateau-Thierry. Dangeruosly close to Paris. The Parisians are panicking." He points to the article, which is in French.

Brissac looks up from where he's been walking around. He tends to do that much, at the moment, it seems. "Chateau-Thierry, you say?" he asks, frowning a little bit.

Kathleen peers at the paper, scrunching up her nose a bit when she realizes it's in French. Can't read a bit of it. "'Bout time the Yanks finally decided to do their bit," she mumbles. "You think they'll be able to stop Jerry short of Paris?" She sounds a little worried, there. If Paris should fall… hearing Brissac's question, she slants a curious glance his way.

Morgenstern grunts something and looks down at the article again, reading more of it. "Yes, apparently somewhere north of Chateau-Thierry is a wood called Bois de Belleau," he explains. "Germans have taken Bouresches, a village east of the woods and they're pushing westwards, but the Americans have stopped them so far. Hard to glean too much from a paper," he says dryly, knowing that details are hardly exposed in that matter.

Brissac nods a little, "Let us all hope that the Americans are going to keep on doing that." He shrugs a little bit, shaking his head slightly. "And lets hope we can get all of this war done soon." After all, that would increase the chances of survival.

"Amen to that," Kathleen murmurs, nodding in agreement with Brissac. Rubbing her eyes a bit, she looks to them in turn. "So how are you lads feeling today? You're looking better."

Morgenstern folds the paper and puts it to the side for someone else to take and read later. "The Americans have trained before they fight, which was clever of their leader to enforce," he comments in his raspy voice. "And they're fresh and eager, I imagine. While the Germans are war-weary by now." He sounds carefully positive about the whole thing. His cigarette is stabbed out into a mug on his table, it's already filled with cigarette butts. "I'm much better. I'll be out of here in a few days."

"Tired," Brissac replies, with a bit of a shrug. "Which means I should probably get some rest." And he makes his way over to his cot, to lay down on the stomach again.

Kathleen watches Brissac go to lie down, then returns her attention to Morgenstern. "Grand. I'll check your dressings, if you don't mind?" She nods to his assessment of the American strength. "Seems everyone's a bit war weary by now," she agrees. Herself included. "I wonder how many of the Yanks they sent."

Morgenstern gives Brissac a friendly nod as he moves off to rest. "I have no idea how many Americans have come. Lots, I hope," Morgenstern comments quietly. He unbuttons his shirt to remove it so Kathleen can check the bandages on his chest and stomach. "Thank you, Miss Campbell. You're a real gem." He gives her a thankful look, shrugging the shirt off to display an upper body with scars here and there.

Kathleen takes a look, and swiftly concludes, "That's looking well. These should probably be changed, though." She offers him a grateful smile in return. "Thank you, Corporal." She fetches the fresh bandages and whatnot, and sets to changing the dressings on his stomach. As she does, she notes, "It'll be a shame to see you go. You seem to cheer up the other lads." From the little she's seen, anyway.

Morgenstern pulls his arms up and back a bit to give her better access, sitting patiently still while she works. Indeed, he is healing up well but shouldn't be back on the front quite yet. "I always recover quickly. For good and bad," he says wryly, lips quirking into a smirk. He blinks, surprised about what she says. "I do? I don't know about that… I'm rather, what's that word… pragmatic? But maybe that's not a bad thing in a situation like this."

Kathleen shakes her head, "No, I don't think that's bad at all. You say things as they are, without being too pessimistic." She sees a lot of that, particularly around the med station. "I suppose it's a fine line." She wraps the bandages around his back and ties them off, working with the swiftness that comes from a lot of practice. "There you are."

Morgenstern held his breath for a moment as she tied the new bandages around his stomach. He lets the air out in a content wheeze. "Feels great, thank you," he says and gets the shirt to put it back on. "Nobody was more surprised than me when they made me Corporal. But these days, they don't have a lot to chose from," he says with self-deprecating humor.

"Now, I know that's not true," Kathleen replies with a supportive smile. "I see a lot of blokes come through here, and none too many with Corporal's stripes." That does make her wonder, though, "How long have you been in the war?"

Morgenstern chuckles a little. "They don't come through here because they tend to die a lot," he says with gallows humor. He buttons the shirt, fumbling a bit since his hand's also wrapped in bandages. "Since it started. I joined the Legion about a year before it started and we were in Africa for awhile before being moved here. How long have you been here?"

"Here, let me," Kathleen smiles, offering to help when she seems him having trouble with the buttons. She seems impressed when he talks of his service. "That's a long time to be fighting." The smile fades a bit when he asks her the same question. "I joined up a little before Gallipoli," she replies somberly. Three long years. "Egypt, then Turkey, then a couple of spots in France before I landed here."

Morgenstern drops his hands to let her button the shirt, long since having stopped being concerned about such things. There was a time when he was too macho to accept help of that kind. "I like to think of it as a long time surviving," he says, eyes crinkling with good humor. But they turn serious again, and he gives her a respectful look. "That's a long time to treat wounded."

Kathleen offers a beleaguered smile. "Long time to survive," she agrees, speaking as much about the nursing as the fighting. Letting out a little sigh, she says, "You should be all set. Not too much longer before you'll be out of here. Though I wouldn't be in any grand rush."

"Trust me, I am in no rush to die," Morgenstern says dryly, running a hand through his tousled hair. He tugs a bit at it and muses; "I need a haircut." It's just a random statement before he moves on. "There were rumours about us getting some leave, so maybe I'll finally have time to go to Paris. You been there?"

Kathleen is relieved. "Well, that's good. Too many of the lads go charging right back out, only to end up here again." She shakes her head, "No, never been. Have you?" She seems distracted for a moment, and then says abruptly, "We have scissors." Realizing that sounds a little odd coming out of the blue she clarifies, "I used to cut my brother's hair, and my father's. I could… I mean, if you like.." It's a bit beyond the standard nursing duties, but what the heck.

Morgenstern squints at her at the suggestion, knowing that it is out of the ordinary duties. "I've only passed through Paris on my way here. It is a huge city," he explains, "but I never really saw much of the interesting things. So I look forward to going there." He grins, and tousles his hair. "And if you have time to cut my hair, I'd be a happy man. Sure beats having my hair cut by old Dupont. He's our unofficial barber and to be honest, he's not very good at it. He keeps cutting our ears."

Kathleen smiles lightly, "Well, I can't promise how fashionable it'll be, but I've never cut anyone's ears." She shrugs a little, "I can spare a few minutes, so long as Jerry gives us a little peace." There doesn't seem to be anyone in need of urgent attention at the moment. Hopefully it'll stay that way. "We should go outside, or in the garden." Wouldn't want to get cut hairs all over everything. "Would you like me to get a chair?" A wheelchair, that is. She points to the corner where they're kept.

"Just cut it as short as you can get away with without making me bald," Morgenstern suggests. "Garden sounds good." He stands up, waving away the suggestion of the wheelchair. "Short walk won't hurt me any," he reassures. His cap is grabbed; he eyes his helmet and his gear for a moment but shrugs away the paranoia for now, deciding to enjoy the weather for once without worrying about being shelled.

Backyard Garden - L'Eglise

Heading out through the well-trafficked backdoor of the church, one enters a small garden that still shows damage from shelling but which has been cleared and repaired somewhat by the medical staff and soldiers. The high stone wall of the church is still partly clad with vines that grow green and healthy. A little lawn can be used to play games on or just to lounge in the grass and rest in the sun. A few mismatched garden tables and chairs are standing against an old hedge that has miraculously survived the shelling and which hems the garden in so that it is an oasis, a quiet and restful place which does not show much of the world outside.
It is currently daytime.

Kathleen notices the look towards the gear but says nothing. Of course, she's got no helmet either, so there's not much point in worrying overmuch. She grabs a towel and a pair of scissors from one of the supply tables and follows Morgenstern outside. "I'm glad they cleared this spot out. It's nice to have a little bit of peace." If you ignore the remnants of the previous shelling.

Morgenstern squints up at the sun. It's warm and pleasant outside and some birds have even returned to the wartorn city. "You can almost forget the war out here," he says raspily, moving to sit down on one of the chairs, putting his cap in his lap. He just brought it habitually, before thinking of the fact he can't wear it if someone is cutting his hair. But it's something to keep his hands occupied with too, while Kathleen acts as barber. "You spoke of your brother. Do you have more brothers or sisters?"

Kathleen stands behind the chair, and drapes the towel over his shoulders to keep the hair off his neck. She shakes her head, not really thinking that he can't see it where she's standing. "No, just Andy. He'll be twenty next month." She speaks of him fondly. "How about yourself?"

Morgenstern speaks proudly. "I have five younger brothers and sisters. Two brothers, three sisters. The youngest is fifteen now, little Lise." Then his mind halts at a terrifying thought and his shoulders stiffen. "I imagine my brothers have been drafted. Mattias and Heinrich." You can almost see his thoughts on the matter. What if he ends up shooting his own brothers?

Kathleen doesn't know what comfort she can offer on that score. Her expression is pained. She says nothing at first, and silently starts working on Morgenstern's hair. She didn't think to bring a comb, so she has to rely on her fingers to sort out any tangles. Finally she says, "I can only pray the war doesn't last another year. I can't imagine Andy caught up in this madness." The scissors start snipping, and she asks tentatively, "Does your family know you've joined up with the French?"

Morgenstern isn't one to dwell too long on such thoughts. As he said, he's pragmatic and it'd be pointless to think too much on it. So, he relaxes again, much because of the touch to his hair which makes him drowsy and relaxed. "They know. At the beginning of the war I could send letters and also retrieve them, but now you can't send letters to Germany any longer. It is understandable." He snickers a little. "Though I believe mother has lied to everyone else, telling them I fight for the Germans. It is probably the wisest thing of her to do to protect them." He puzzles over something comforting to say himself, and decides for the matter of fact approach again. "War can't go on much longer now. Americans are here, Germans are depleting their resources."

Kathleen nods, wanting to believe that herself. "It must be hard not being able to write home. I know the letters I receive from home are a great comfort. Though it takes ages for them to get back and forth." It's a long way to Tipperary and all that - longer still to Australia. More snipping. "Can I ask you something?" It's more of a rhetorical question.. she doesn't quite wait for an answer. "Why didn't you fight for the Germans?" There's no accusation in her voice, it sounds more like honest curiousity.

Morgenstern cocks his head a bit so she can reach, it's an instinctual gesture. "For various reasons, I had to leave Frankfurt," he begins, thinking back to a time that seems so distant now. "I had to start over with something and also hide from some people. So, I joined the French Foreign Legion. I'm not the only German who's done the same, there are many of Germans fighting in the Legion. Or, well, there was. Most of them are dead now," he notes dryly. "When the war started… I could've deserted the Legion and joined the Germans instead, but… it's hard to explain. I couldn't desert the others. They're like my brothers."

"I can understand that," Kathleen says, nodding. "I mean, war's about politics on the grand scale, but for us it's just about protecting the people you care about, right?" Her voice catches a bit at that, so she shuts up and just keeps cutting. She tugs a little on one of the tangles, trying to be gentle.

Morgenstern gets contemplative again, also quiet for awhile. He stares at some poppies which have grown up near the hedge. "I think that for awhile I stopped caring. You get numb," he says quietly. "All your friends dying aruond you, you…" He doesn't finish, feeling awkward trying to put words to something he's mostly trying not to think about at all. "You just live in the now, don't think about yesterday and don't worry about tomorrow."

The scissors falter for an instant. No nicked ears or anything, but there's still a noticeable pause as Morgenstern's remarks hit home. "You can't think about them," Kathleen agrees, her voice very soft. "You tell yourself you owe it to them. To remember them, because who else will? But if you think about it, you'll go mad." She scoffs bitterly, "Of course, we're all probably a bit mad anyway."

Morgenstern snickers softly at that. "Quite mad. Some absolutely literally. It's worse with those who just scream, or have nightmares, or who just lie there pathetically, than it is with those who get shot. At least being shot is… what's that word… tangible?" He almost shakes his head, but remembers himself. "I sure hope that after this war, everyone will remember so that it never happens again."

Kathleen nods, "Amen," she agrees quietly. Though she can't imagine men being insane enough to go through this again. Even the politicians. She finishes off his hair, and takes a step back, admiring her work. One final snip to even things out, and then she smiles. "There. All through."

Morgenstern runs a hand through his hair, then turns and smiles at her. "Perfect," he says. Not that he's vain, he doesn't much care how it looks as long as it's not in the way. He stands up and removes the towel, shaking it hard to get the hairs out of it. "Thank you very much, Miss Campbell. I'll just sit out here for awhile now, let you get back to work. I'll make my way inside in an hour or so. I could use the fresh air."

Later the same day…

A loud cheering comes from the garden, where a group of wounded are gathered in the afternoon sun. It's going to be dark soon enough, but it's still light enough for some games of a kind. The current game consists of throwing large pebbles into a bucket, the contestants standing on one side of the garden and throwing them to the other side where the bucket is placed. Morgenstern is one of those throwing pebbles despite an injured right hand, and three others are in the contest as well.

Christiane is drawn out into the garden by the sound of the cheering. She casts a gray-eyed look around at the men. As if to make sure they aren't irritating their wounds or doing anything too unseemly. But what she sees just makes her smile. She takes up a place on the edge of the group to watch them.

Bets are being placed on who the winner will be. It's a simple contest; everyone has ten pebbles, and the one who gets most of them into the bucket, wins. If there's a draw, they do it again to see who wins. Morgenstern is up after the first one missed; he concentrates briefly, watching the bucket intently before doing a underhand throw, like he'd throw a grenade. The pebble flies through the air and it really looks like it's going to go into the bucket, but it bounces off the edge and falls to the grass. There's a collective groan at that. Morgenstern laughs and steps back to let the next man throw and he lights up a cigarette while waiting. There's a lot of bantering and calling at the contestants and nobody is in any real hurry. Seeing Christiane, the legionnaire raises a hand and gives her a little wave.

Christiane hesitates a moment, then gives a 'what the heck' sort of shrug and tugs on the sleeve of the man taking the bets. She places one herself. Just a few coins. She seems to be doing it more for the fun of joining the contest than to win. She puts hers down on Morgenstern, as it happens. His performance makes her wince a little but she claps for him nonetheless. When she sees his wave she returns it, picking up her skirt and stepping over to join him. "You seem to be in good spirits," she says, apparently meaning both him personally and the broader collection of wounded.

Morgenstern watches the next contestant throw the pebble right into the bucket and a cheer goes up from those who's betted on the Brit, while others groan. Morgenstern just grins. He's not entirely uncompetitive, but this is purely for fun more than anything else. He has nothing to prove. He steps a bit more to the side when Christiane joins him and he dips his chin in a respectful nod at her. "Weather's lovely, neither of us are dying, the Americans have joined the war and there's not been any shelling in awhile. And," he says, in a rare show of rascalness, "we have the lovely nurses to watch. So yeah, we're in good spirits." He gives her a grin, taking a quick drag on his cigarette. "And you? How's your spirits?"

Christiane blushes, but it's just a faint blush. She laughs good-naturedly at all he says, nodding in agreement. "Yes. It is a lovely day, isn't it? I enjoy coming out here. It almost looks like true summer. Like my mother's garden back home." Her accent is lilting Belgian, though it's near enough to French that she's often taken for that by the Brits, Aussies and others unfamiliar with the area. "I am glad you are healing well, Corporal. If not well enough for me to keep my franc." She directs a look back at the bucket.

Morgenstern is up to throw, but he lingers on with Christiane which of course immediately illicits a few whistles and amused comments. "Hey Morgy you old wardog, I didn't think you knew how to talk to women!" a British soldier calls out. Morgenstern rolls his eyes a bit and then laughs, looking back at Christiane. "He's right, I don't know how to talk to women. And I should be out of here in a few days, I'm just one of those who heal well. Now… watch me win," he says cockily and walks over to get his pebble. He tosses it up and down a few times, feeling the weight of it, testing the balance. Then he stares hard at the bucket again, and throws. This time… the pebble goes in. And there's some cheering again, Morgenstern grinning smugly as he moves to the side again, chosing Christiane's company once more.

Christiane rolls her eyes at the whistling, ignoring it for the most part. Her cheeks go a little pink again, but she's used enough to the soldiers by now to put up with that sort of thing. She claps for Morgenstern's performance, letting out an encouraging whistle of her own at the legionnaire. "So, how do play?" she asks when he rejoins her. Perhaps to deflect the conversation away from his skills at talking to women. But she continues to eye that bucket. Like a little girl who very much wants to join the boys in their school football match.

Morgenstern leans up against a table, watching the others throw. "Simple. We throw ten pebbles each, the one who gets most of them into the bucket wins. If it's even, the two with the most hits throw five more and the one who gets most hits then is the one who wins. Just something someone made up, it's simple, it doesn't mean any running or much excertion…" He glances at her, noticing how she looks at the bucket. "You want to play? You can throw instead of me."

"Oh, no," Christiane says quickly, shaking her head. "I would not want to interrupt your game…" But her eyes still linger on that bucket. She turns back to Morgenstern, a girlish light in her gray eyes. "You are certain you would not mind?"

"I would most certainly not mind," Morgenstern rasps, grinning broadly at her. And before she has a chance to change her mind, he calls out to the group of soldiers, switching to English. "Listen up! I got a champion here who'll throw instead of me. Miss Christiane Ingels!" He reaches for Christiane's hand so he can pull her over to the spot for throwing, unless she pulls her hand away. The group turns their eyes collectively on Christiane, there's a moment of silence and then applauds and cheers. Many of them are being nursed by Christiane, in fact.

Christiane giggles, beaming at Morgenstern and extending her hand so he can pull her along. She's quite willing to go. She laughs again at all the cheering, her cheeks going red again. But pleasure is mixed with embarrassment this time. She takes a pebble, tossing it up and down in her palm a few times, before tossing it underhand toward the bucket. It's a square throw and the rock goes in easily.

Morgenstern had no idea she'd be that good at it and he is impressed. There's more cheers, plus a few groans from those who'd not put their money on MOrgenstern, or as it is now, on Christiane. But it's goodnatured groans. "Oh, they don't stand a chance now," he Morgenstern tells Christiane, eyes glittering happily. It's been a long time since he enjoyed himself so much. "Where'd you learn to throw like that?"

Christiane skips off when it's the Brit's turn to throw again, a wide grin splitting her face. She meets Morgenstern's gaze and, for once, there's actual light in her gray eyes. "I had three older brothers, Corporal," she replies. "Daniel and Eugene always needed more players for cricket. And Albert had a terrible arm."

Morgenstern follows Christiane, watching the Brit make a terrible throw, the pebble disappearing in behind the hedge. It is followed by laughter and a few deriding comments which the Brit responds to in kind. "A stroke of geniousness of me to ask you then," Morgenstern says, now totally certain of victory. "Three older brothers… I have two /younger/ brothers and that was bad enough," he jokes. "I have two younger sisters too, I suppose they had to be rather tough with three older brothers in turn." He doesn't want to ruin the good mood, so shifts subject, not wanting to start thinking too much about family. The attempt to shift focus is a bit feeble however. "I suppose we could play cricket tomorrow…"

Christiane winks at Morgenstern. "If you can find a wicket, Corporal, I think you would be the men's hero." She runs up when it's her turn again, and again sinks the pebble into the bucket easily. The men who bet on Morgenstern are watching with more optimism now, though they're still skeptical. Those could've been lucky. "It is good to see them enjoy themselves," she says as she rejoins the legionnaire. "They must go through so much hardship each day. You are a good leader."

Well, that gives Morgenstern a mission. To find a wicket for a game of cricket. He whistles loudly and applauds by slapping his left hand against his thigh, his right hand still wounded. "You don't stand a chance!" he calls out to the other contestants, being met with cocky calls in turn. He just laughs, greeting the returning Christiane with a broad grin. Grin is turned into a near embarassed smile. "Funny how I hear that a lot today. Is that some kind of nurse-trick to make a man get better quicker? Honest, I was surprised they tacked a couple of stripes on my uniform."

Christiane levels a mock-inscrutable look at Morgenstern. "I would tell you, Corporal, but I have been sworn to secrecy by the nurses." She chuckles. "Non. If you are being told so, it must be because many believe it to be the truth. That you were surprised makes you better for it, I think. Men who lust after rank are usually the ones who least deserve it, from what I have seen." The Brit gets up to make his throw again, managing to make it this time, then is followed by the other soldier, who misses. Christiane flits up again after that, sinking yet another pebble. She lets out a happy little squeal of triumph.

Morgenstern grunts something in response, not sure how to react to the praise. "Oh, right. Those who crave power are the least suited to it," he agrees. He once more follows her to watch her throw, letting out a 'whoop!' as she gets it in once more. Scores are counted and it's quite clear that Christiane is in the lead. "You do realize that after this they won't let you compete in anything that involves throwing again?" he grins at her. "Although…" He suddenly looks impish. "There'll be new rounds of wounded coming in who won't know. If you wanted you could make a fortune on bets."

"There is always football, I suppose," Christiane says with a little laugh. "Though I never was so good at kicking." At his last she laughs again. "Corporal! To think I would take such advantage!" But she lifts a finger to her chin and lets out a mock-thoughtful, "Hmmmm." A moment later she's back to laughing. "It is true, though, that I do not think I will have to deal with you for much longer. You seem to be healing very well."

Morgenstern lights up a cigarette again, and after a glance at the pack, he offers one over to her if she'd want one. If she's that good at throwing maybe she smokes too. "I like football," he admits, squinting at her as the sun is behind her. "And you should take advantage, teach these cocky young men a lesson," he suggests, semi-seriously. He inhales smoke deeply, then lets it out through his nose, looking back at the contestants who're taking their good time with it. But it's yet another couple of misses. "Don't worry, Miss. I'll be back soon enough," he jokes with graveyard humor.

Christiane considers the cigarette but, after a moment's thought, shakes her head with a smile. "I prefer sweater vices, Corporal," she says. "Though chocolate is in shorter supply here than cigarettes. And do not say such things." She gives him a firm look. "You must do your best to stay safe. Promise me you will." But then it's her turn again. She turns to flit up, plucking up a pebble. "If I make this shot, Corporal, you must promise." And then she throws it, and in it goes indeed.

At this point, the rest have to hit all their pebbles to win over Christiane. Morgenstern stands there as proud as if he'd done the deed himself. Her insistance of his promise makes him wince a little, but as she makes the shot he promises. "I promise to do my best to stay safe. I want to survive this war, so that's an easy enough promise to make. Now, if only the Germans felt the same about keeping me safe…" He grins to take the edge off of those words. "Come on, let's watch these losers throw and then we'll celebrate with tea and is there still some of those cookies we got the other day?"

Christiane nods triumphantly to Morgenstern, as if the force of lucky throwing could keep him safe. "Your best. I will hold you to that, Corporal. Make no mistake of it, I will have sharp words for you if you enter the church on a stretcher again." She crosses her arms, standing beside him to watch the other throwers. "Cookies sound divine. Not so good as chocolate, but, beggars and choosers, yes?"

"Not as good as chocolate," Morgenstern agrees softly, a bit mellow all of a sudden. The mood is still bright amongst the wounded, even those who knows they've already lost. A brave effort is made by the rest, but alas, they all miss. The winner is Christiane, she doesn't have to throw the rest. "Well, Miss Christiane… I don't want to hear your sharp words, so that in itself is enough to keep my head down out there. And it looks like you won." There's a loud cheering going out and chantings of 'Christiane! Christiane!' It's enough of a ruckus to make a few nurses rush out to see what is going on, confusion on their faces. A few of the Brits who won bets on Christiane get so excited they move up in an attempt to lift Christiane up on their shoulders to parade around with though at least they're kind enough to ask first.

Christiane blinks. It seems she has won. She looks honestly surprised, despite the way things were going. She lets out a happy little cry, trying to give Morgenstern a hug. She laughs joyfully, beaming over at the other nurses as she lets the Brits lift her up. She raises her arms high, laughing and smiling down at the legionnaire.

Morgenstern accepts the hug awkwardly and returns it with a quick one of his own. "Don't drop her now, boys!" he calls out, shaking his head in amusement about the younger men's antics. But Christiane's joy is rubbing off and he laughs heartily as she raises her arms in that victorious gesture. "Hey, what about me?" he calls out jokingly. "I hired her, why don't you lift me up?" To which he gets the response from a witty Tommy; "We would, Morgy, except you're both ugly and heavy and if we dropped you you'd be able to beat us up." Morgenstern is quick to respond in kind. "Oh yeah, Jones? You drop Christiane, she could beat you up too."

"I would not!" Christiane giggles. "I would only have to fix him afterwards." The other nurses, watching from the doorway into the church, are laughing, too. A couple do look faintly scandalized, but they don't seem inclined to object, the mood the Belgian girl is in. She hops down from the arms of the Tommys, giving a little twirl as she flits back to Morgenstern. "I must return to my duties, I think. Thank you, Corporal. For letting me play." It clearly meant more to her than a moment's diversion.

Things calm down a bit. Bet-money are exchanged, thanks are given to Christiane and some congratulations and a few questions on where she learned to throw like that, but other than that, it's calming down. They're all wounded more or less after all, and too much excitement tires them. Morgenstern looks a bit tired too, but happy and content. "All selfish motives, really," he says deadpan. "I didn't want to lose." He nods respectfully at her. "I'll remember the promise I made."

"You have better," Christiane says, a little more somber when he brings that up. She gives him one last smile, before offering all the wounded men a little wave and heading back into the church. She's promptly surrounded by a gaggle of nurses on her way in, who start clucking curiously at the Belgian woman.

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