The Pink Fields Of Finland

Aarne drags his tired ass into the dugout, his arm covered in still fresh blood.

Antti nods once. "If you say so. But we need more shots for it, still. Another couple tank pushes, and all the shells will be spent. then we're down to glass bottles and petrol."

Sonja is asleep in a cot. She doesn't get much sleep, but at the moment she is… sleeping.

Ari-Pekka looks up from where he is down on a cot, frowning a bit as he sees the new arrivals. "Looks like you guys had a party," he remarks.

Seppo Laine kicks the snow off his boots at the entrance to the industrial-strength igloo. "We need more ammo for it, we need another Swedish popgun…" He shakes his head. "What we need are a few good Krupp cannons and a steady supply of shells."

"Nah, what we *really* need is another 15 or 20 years to build our own guns, so we can say a proper 'screw yourselves' to the Swedes, and germans alike. So, who can swing that, you think?" he asks, with a sarcastic sniff.

Aarne bangs a wall with the butt of his rifle /CLUNK/ "Wake up, lotta! We need some medical aid here." He nods to Ari-Pekka as he moves to a bunk, muttering, "Cleared out those cavalry that galled us last time. Managed to get them all."

Sonja stirs. "Ugh." she mutters, and rolls out of bed, in rumpled Lotta uniform. "Ugh." she repeats. "Whats going on?". She peers blearily at Aarne, and rubs sleepy eyes, with a huge yawn.

"We took a stroll out in the woods, and Lt. Laine and his men were savaged by bears - Mannikainen there ran into a tree." The sarcasm is heavy. Aarne mutters, "We got shot, of course." Being wounded has soured his already foul disposition.

Seppo Laine lets out a laugh at Antti, nodding along with him. "Evenin'!" he greets Ari-Pekka, bobbing his head. "Yeah, we danced with the fine Russian Cavalry. Sent 'em on their way to learn the truth about Stalin's damned ath—" And then Aarne bellows, much like Seppo has in the past. The response is quick: Sepp darts in and plants a fist in his Sergeant's shoulder, good and hard. The sweaters and parkas and such absorb the blow, but the point remains. "Show some respect to the Sisters, dammit!"

Antti takes a half step back as Seppo swings at Aarne's arm. "Heh," he sniffs with a small shake of his head. To Sonja, "The two that are punching each other are the worst off. Figures, doesnt it?" The farmer chuckles.

Ari-Pekka shrugs a little, as he hears that. "Sorry that I wasn't able to join you out there," he offers, before turning around again, and falling asleep.

"Oh, give over. This isn't a goddamn kindergarten." Aarne shoots a dark look at Seppo, failing to appear ashamed in the least. He doesn't react to the light blow, having plenty of pain in his other shoulder to think of.

Aarne shouts out, "Damnit, I have a throat infection too!" He stares longingly at the cabinet with the medical spirits. Turning aside to Give Seppo and Antti a wink, he adds, "If it's not disinfected, it might get really serious."
"And it's not a damned prison either," Seppo grunts, staying close and muttering to Aarne. He waves a hand to Sonja, the bandaged and bloodied hand. "This is a Sister of the…" Seppo pauses for a moment. "Well I don't know what damned order she's from, but you will show both she and her Sister a modicum of damned respect." His own search for alcohol is much quicker—it's in a small fur-wrapped canteen, tied to his belt. He IS a veteran, after all. ;)

"She's not a goddamn nun, Seppo, she's a Lotta. I'll show her tons of respect if I CAN JUST GET MY GODDAMN ARM BANDAGED." Aarne doesn't exactly seem to be losing his temper, but he does seem extremely grumpy about the still sleep-dazed lotta's slowness.

Sonja rolls her eyes, grabs at Aarne's arm, and slowly wraps a bandage about it. "God. Can't I even get any sleep here anymore?" she grumps. She peers at the wound. "This looks fresh. You been fighting again?".

Antti pre-emptively thuds aarne in the back of the shoulder as Sonja asks that bleary question. "Yes," he answers on Arne's behalf.

"No, I stumbled and…" Aarne cuts off his bitterly sarcastic reply as Antti speaks for him, shooting a sour look at the other Red.

Seppo Laine shakes his head, unscrewing his vodka flask. "There's no way you're convincing me those two are from the same mother." He takes a draught, sighs happily. "They're nuns, that's why they call each other Sisters."

Sonja shakes her head at Seppo. She's too sleepy to really grok, but she does wrinkle her nose. "You are being insulting to me again?" she wonders. Turfed out of bed to plug bullet holes, and no appreciation. Lotta life sucks.
Seppo Laine pulls off his snow goggles to look Sonja in the eyes. He shakes his head and in a grave voice tels her, "No, not at all, Sister."

Sonja yawns, and reaches for Seppo's hand. "Let me look at that." she says tonelessly, and cleans it diligently, running on autopilot it seems, as her gaze is barely focused. "There is no shortage of medicine here at least, not like Suomussalmi. You want some morphine?". Ahh, drugs.

Seppo Laine shivers at the suggestion; no, not shivers—he outright trembles. "F… fine, Sister, I'm fine," he whispers hoarsely. This man seems to have quite the problem with any medical procedure he can't watch in acton.

Sonja shakes her head. "Stay still, or I'm going to hurt you." she points out. "Thats quite a nasty wound. You get shot right in the hand?". She peers at it, finger bone everywhere. "That must hurt. I think you should get some of the morphine.". She glances up at his face. "You don't feel sleepy, do you? All alert?".

Kaarto has arrived.
Kaarto arrives from the East.

Seppo Laine stays as still as he can—the hand is shaky now. "Yeah. Lucky shot, but if I hadn't had my hand over the Degtaryev's barrel, it would've gone through my eye." He narrows his eyes on Sonja, trembling again at the mention of morphine. "Of course I'm sleepy," he snaps, though the restraint shows in that he doesn't curse her out. "I just assaulted horsemen, that's like…" He grinds his teeth for a moment. "Like childbirth. You ever known a new mother who wasn't dead tired soonafter?"

"I don't think war is very comparable to childbirth, no." Sonja tells Seppo briskly. She plucks at his shoulder, guiding him over to where her fathers bag is still with her, though nowadays its stuffed with all manner of toys, courtesy of the Finnish Army. One of those toys is a morphine ampoule, which gets injected into Seppo so quickly there isnt time for argument. Then she probes at that shattered hand with sensitive fingers. "I think this will ache until the day you die… but. Maybe I can do something.". Now the pain is dulled, she can go to work on binding his hand in a manner which means it will hopefully heal in a more or less appropriate fashion.

The older man doesn't duel her over battle and childbirthmatters of opinion. He's staring at a painting that's been hung (and torn more than a few times, mind you), so the prick of the needle takes him by surprise. Seppo turns his head to glare at it, studying the way it tugs his skin as it pulls out. He grinds his teeth in frustration, but Sonja's analysis of his handand the onset of the drug—keeps him from getting to sullen with her. "Has for a while now. Reds took a sledgehammer to it in the Civil War. Don't know how many times I've cracked the bone busting someone's chops in the Kaiser's service before zthat." He holds up his good right hand. "Bout as many times as I did this one training whelps and tending bar, I reckon."
Sonja glances up at Seppo. "How old are you, anyway?" she asks as she works. He may be happily warm from the morphine but doubtless those splintered bones still hurt, especially with her poking and prodding at them. "The less I hear of the civil war, the better. I'm really not interested in all that - I knew Matti well enough, and he wasn't so bad, he was hardly the devil at least. I think its terrible it even happened.".

"Fourty-two, though it seems like a lot more." His voice does quaver a bit when she pushes too hard here or there. Seppo listens to Sonja, calmly nodding. At her last comment, he reaches out to pat her arm. "All war is terrible, Sister, but wars between brothers are even worse. Can't make everyone out to be Lucifer—that ornery sunuvabitch Aarne's a Red, and I still call him Brother." He opens his mouth to say more, but a shock of pain robs him of his voice.

Sonja nods, and narrows her eyes somewhat, looking back up at Seppo briefly. "Well… if anything good as come out of this war with the Russians, thats probably it. People like Matti had to put up with a lot here before, and Aarne too probably, though I don't know him. I guess that is all history now.".

"Aarne went through a lot. Then he fled to Joe Stalin." He shakes his head, breath slowing down. His silence almost suggests sleep, until he speaks up again. "Ol' Uncle Joe did worse than break his hand, Sister, let's leave it at that. I met 'im in prisonthe man escaped a gulag, froze his ass off to get back to Finland, and all he got for a homecoming was jail." He shakes his head again, sighinga sigh of relief, in fact. "Aarne's no saint—not by a long shot!" he grunts. "Not even a good man. He's just a man, Sister. Just a man."

"Well, I don't know Aarne. I just know Matti and Antti, and how they were not really… well thought of, back in Raatevaara. But they were always fighting the Soviets, they were no traitors, in the end. And Matti died out on the ice. He's the only man I saw die, really… they took me out on the ice, to try and save him." Sonja explains.

Seppo Laine groans, shaking his head. The hand reaches out again, this time to squeeze her arm lightly before patting. "I'm sorry," he says softly, as fatherly as he can manage. He takes a deep, shaky breath before continuing only a little louder. "If you don't mind the asking, Sister, how old might you be?"

"29, now…" Sonja replies after a moments thought. "I didn't really think much of what it meant to be Red or White until very recently, I've never been all that political.".

"Only that…" He squeezes her arm again, then lets go. "Far too young…" He groans softly, leans back in his seat and listens. "One of the boys said, the other day… 'Red blood on White snow: Finland's pink.'" He leers, but briefly—nun or not, prudish Lutheranism or not, an old soldier of all people is going to appreciate the irony of saying that to a woman. It goes away, though, and is replaced by a more somber visage. "Pink, like the sunset after a good hard day's accomplishments. I thin I like a Pink Finland, Sister."

Sonja wipes away a smile with some difficulty, despite the sombre topic. "I didn't think you were much of a poet, Lieutenant. Is that your second calling?" she wonders.

Seppo Laine shakes in a soft laugh. The morphine's kicking in, calming him and making everything… fluffy, he might say. "My first calling is our Lord, Sister. My second, the Pub and family, the two being the same. Soldiering's just a habit I developed in my misspent youth, and never could really kick." He raises a finger, lets it fall, then lifts it up again as he remembers what he was about to say. "Poetry, Sister… Poetry is in all of life. The Music of the Spheres, if you will. You get older," he says, almost like an offer, "you'll hear it too."

Sonja shakes her head at that, Seppo has turned too weird now. "Thats the morphine talking. I think you've had enough." she tells him. She holds up his bandaged hand. "Much better now, right? You don't feel any pain, do you?". From the way he's flying, she assumes not!

Seppo Laine smiles up at her, his face looking as much like a cherub as it's capable of. "I feel… I feel alright," he decides, speech slow indeed. He pushes against the table with his good hand, like he wants to get up, but gives up in a second. "I should… should realy go check the lines now, you know…"

Sonja nods… "Alright.". She glances over his arm, peeling back the old bandage to inspect briefly. "You're on the mend, finally. You shouldn't strain yourself too much though. Especially not that hand.".

"It was feeling better," Seppo agrees, but makes no moves to try and get up again. "You've got the touch, Sister. Only our good Lord can cheat Death, of course, but…" He shrugs, turns his head to pointedly stare at one of the beds. "… maybe He's seen fit to smile through you, now and then."

Sonja blushes at such high praise. "I don't think so, Lieutenant. I'm just a nurse. I learned a few things in Suomussalmi is all, it's not like gunshot wounds are unfamiliar to me now, unfortunately.".

"Sister?" he asks, reaching feebly out to Sonja. "Need two things from you." Seppo jerks a head at the bank of beds. "I don't think that shot you gave me's agreeing with me here…" Fear, it seems, is slowly taking the place of pain.

Sonja blinks at that, and automatically reaches for his neck, to feel for a pulse. He's not in shock is he? Did she screw up? She pales noticeably. "Whats wrong? You're not sleepy are you??".

"Just need a little lie-down, Sister," he says unsteadily, trying to push himself to his feet. Suddenly Seppo clamps the injured hand to his stomach, the good one to his mouth. "Ormaybe" He writhes, interrupting his sentence. Between squirms, the man makes out, "abedpansorry"

Sonja is deeply worried now, all these drugs to hand makes her want to inject willy nilly, even when it may be not all that appropriate. "Alright, a lie down!" she squeaks, and steers Seppo over to a cot with a firm grip on one elbow. "But don't you stop talking!".

Seppo Laine throws an arm over Sonja's shoulder, the act requiring a Herculean mental effort. It's not all that clear who's steering who, since he's practically dragging her to the nearest bed too. Once in range, Seppo detaches from her like bombs from a jabo, crashing onto the cot and instantly curling up. He removes the hand from his mouth just long enough to insistently groan, "Bucket NOW, Sister!"

Sonja grabs a nearby bucket, and passes it to him wordlessly, looking on with wide eyes. She's seen all sorts of miserable and horrible stuff, like Luukas soiling his own pants. It happens. So after the initial surprise she tries to look reassuring. She manages a sterling job.

Seppo Laine grabs the bucket, setting it on the floor next to the cot. He leans over the edge, his body contracting over and over. Most of the time his mouth hangs open, but nothing more than spittle drips into the bucket. That gets old, fast, so after a few minutes of dry-heaving he forces himself back onto the cot proper and straightens out, lying back. Whether it's force of will or just the nausea abating is hard to tell, but the deep, slow breathing seems to be helping bring himself back to his senses.

Charming. Sonja gives Seppo a reassuring pat. "That feel better now, Lieutenant?" she asks in her best bright 'n optimistic voice. She diplomatically leaves the bucket where he left it, its not like it needs emptying, and maybe he'll be reaching for it again.

Nodding a little feebly, he tries a few words. "Seppo, Sister," he says stiffly, then swallows. "I'd rather not be… bundled in with the real officers, 'specially not by m'doctor." He makes a face, swallowing hard. "w-water?"
"I'm not a doctor." Sonja hastily points out, before a real doctor gets pissy with her. She hurriedly pours a mug of water, and passes it to him. It may not be the cleanest, but it is, at least, the sort of refreshing only ice cold brings. "Here you go…" she says gently.

Seppo Laine opens his mouth, then closes it again and props himself up to wait for the water. The feeling of the nearly frozen liquid of life draws out a nearly profane groan from the man. The mug is gone in a flash, and handed back to Sonja. "I'm not an officer, either," he remarks, finally able to reply.
"Isn't a lieutenant an officer?" Sonja asks, a bit bemused by that. "You want some more?" she wonders, looking into the empty mug. She takes a moment to pour some more. It can always stay by his side even if he doesn't want it now.

"Yesplease," Seppo practically gasps about the water. He lies back onto his side, smiling at the woman. "A Luutnantti, even a Vanrikki, is an officer, yeah. I'm no officer, thogh—just filling the billett." He coughs out a laugh, accepting the water when she returns with it. "I'd say I'm a lifelong Sergeant, but even that ain't quite true."

Sonja shrugs at that. "So you're an officer, then." she replies. "No great virtue in being a sergeant… the higher rank, the better right?" she guesses. As blunt as always, even if she doesn't quite realise it. She leaves the mug of water by him. "I have to go see to everybody else, there is no shortage of wounded, at the moment.".

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