Cold is devouring its way through his fingers, his arms, his chest. It seems to travel through his scars — all of them fresh — and then grow further, like icicles under his skin. When his sleep isn’t interrupted by visions of dark hands over his face or the sound of a gun being fired at his face, he wakes up freezing in the middle of the night and tries to pour a tiny bit more of his sluggish magic into warming himself. What he has left, he uses to heal others rather than himself. His own bites, scratches and blade marks are simply closed, nothing more. It’s fine, he tells himself. The rest of the group is more important. What other thoughts he has are doused in the bottles of alcohol — moonshine, really — that remain, which is easier than processing them.
And then everything is bright and warm, and Cash Gillingwater, fearing the worst, opens his eyes. He’s sure that he can't trust what meets them. The corridor is clean and quiet, and his group is nowhere to be seen. Is this some trick? Is the ancient creature finally moving on from cold and going into outright hallucinations?
Cash looks as though he’s gone through a blender at some recent time, strong jaw covered in a thick layer of stubble and his dark hair hanging just below his ears. He hasn’t bothered to cut it in quite some time. His grey slacks and white button shirt are in varied states of distress, though intact. The grey vest is just barely intact, some of the bloodstains on it fake and some of them real. His bared hands and forearms are covered in fresh scars, though they don’t look nearly as distressing as the wide slash mark which nearly severed the front of the vest. It’s the newest of any of his wounds, and the mark on his skin — like someone cut him with a blade, though the reality was far worse — is only just barely closed.
Nothing on him is particularly insulating, and he shivers as he tries to decide if he’s going to stand up and move. The warm air has yet to sink in past the layer of cold which has been a constant in his skin. His magic has had to work hard to keep him from hypothermia. The sniper rifle
strapped to his back stays there, as does the pistol
in his shoulder strap. Is he somewhere new, somewhere controlled by the ancients, or somewhere deep under the frozen hell that the town has become in the past month?
“Well. 'Least there’s no snow here,” he remarks to himself, with a faint Virginian twang, his low voice scratchy from how little it’s been used lately. His words aren’t slurred at all, which is rather impressive considering how much moonshine is still rattling around in his system.( Locked to Luke Skywalker. )