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"You might be a smart girl, but you aren't a lucky one"

You play as Delilah, an unfortunate young girl going through tough times.

=Links and Information=


Thanks to an anon, here is the pastebin of just the text. With threads purposely being misarchived, this should be available and accessible instead:
Melancholic Quest Collection 1 (1-4): http://pastebin.com/hTK0fQmd
Melancholic Quest Collection 2: http://pastebin.com/cX4HC6Q9
Melancholic Quest Collection 3: http://pastebin.com/sTuR8xJv
Melancholic Quest Collection 4: http://pastebin.com/RPwa7nEt
Melancholic Quest Collection 5: http://pastebin.com/DJ71TtFc
Melancholic Quest Collection 6: http://pastebin.com/xxCdZfx6
Melancholic Quest Collection 7: http://pastebin.com/7skcyeX0

Quick Glance (SPOILERS) The quick Who is Who and what Delilah has. Mostly accurate.:


Twitter; @Cowboy_Sue
Discord; https://discord.gg/8CCdcQ3 <--updated to be working
Chat room with me and other players. I answer questions, post sketches, and act cheeky.

Since it's been forever since the last thread, currently happenings are:
>you and Lawrence have made it to Granny's safehome
>the same place your grandfather had built when he was hustling drugs
>Your mother is being held at the hospital after testing positive for 'street rot'
>Your grandmother is bedridden thanks to her bad heart
>Dr. Rizzo and his assistant Camilla are around the safehouse to aid her
>Camilla has helped with your use of guns, giving you several holsters for when you go out
You look at one of the dark strands hanging in front of your face, nose crinkling up as you remember why it's this way. "I want it back the way it was. I want it blonde again, and I'm tired of looking like a boy." The short nails of your fingers scratch over the orange peel, unable to catch the surface right to pull it away. "It needs to grow out so it can maybe start looking cute--" Being able to reach over and pluck it from your hands easily Lawrence takes the orange, digging into the soft skin better than you were able to.

He keeps the lopsided grin on his face even when all you can manage to do is sulk and pout, forced to keep your hands occupied by brushing through your hair instead.

"Al-...ways..." Lawrence has to mouth the words more than whisper them, and you keep a careful watch on his lips to make sure that you don't miss anything. "C-...cute."

"You're just saying that cause you have to." You reach out to demand the fruit back, hoping he doesn't notice how flustered you get just from that. Not that you really believe it, but having it come from him always gives you a warm fuzzy feeling in your chest.

i dont have to you really are

When he gives you the note to read Lawrence takes the opportunity to snag a section of the orange, popping it in his mouth as he starts rubbing at his right shoulder. It's going to take a while for that gunshot wound to heal, and as you look over the shaky and messier than usual words written down you just pray that it's nothing permanent.

You can't even pretend to act annoyed with him like you usually do, seeing what a mess he's in right now makes it feel like you should just be doing whatever it takes to keep him happy. "Do you need any-" you start to ask, stopping only because the kitchen doors swing open and a yawning Crockett stumbles in.

"Oh, morning." Crockett greets you both, looking ready to fall over at any second. He makes a beeline right for the coffeemaker, preparing himself for whatever long day he has in front of him.

"Are you going out today?" you ask, standing up and quietly asking Lawrence if he wants anything. With a request for a cup of coffee too you're forced to look through the kitchen for an appropriate cup, finding that the numerous cabinets seem to be either bare or full of boxes taped up that you can't rummage through. Crockett gives you a clue where to look, pointing out where you can find the few cups and plates in the place.

"That's the plan," he answers, "Not too long I'm hoping, there's not really a lot on my list today. It's going to take a few minutes by the way, I started a new brew and this thing is kind of old and slow."

"Where a-" you start to ask but Crockett speaks up quickly, addressing Lawrence rather than you.
"How you feeling Law?" he asks from across the room, accepting the silent nod in response to the question. "Glad to see you up and about. Sorry to interrupt your breakfast like this, but could you do me a favor and go swing by Dr. Rizzo? He's gonna want to look at your shoulder and it'd be better to get it out of the way now, just in case he ends up with his hands full later. And that's, unfortunately, a good possibility for him. Don't worry, I'll save you some coffee here."

"Busy, with what?" you start to ask, but looking over to see Lawrence wince in pain makes you forget about the question. "If it's hurting you more than usual then you should go see him right now, do I need to walk over with you?" Of course he shakes his head at the offer, more than capable of walking himself down a few hallways. Giving you a quick wave he slips out from the kitchen, the door swinging shut behind. You're ready to ask what Dr. Rizzo might be busy with today, but Crockett manages to speak up before you can again.

"I've got about half an hour here before I've gotta get my little errands for today done," he explains, "One of them involves dropping by the hospital your mother is at, just for a visit and maybe see what's up with her current situation there."

"Will you be able to see her though?" you ask, Crockett nodding in response.

"Yeah. She's confined to a single room and under some security measures, but we'd be able to go in and talk with her."


"Ah, that's right." Crockett seems to sorting through his thoughts, making him walk over to the sink and turn the cold water on. "I meant to ask you first, it wouldn't be that long or a visit but would you want to go with me to see Denise?"

"To see Mom..." you bite at your lip as you think about it, "You mean just us two?"
You wait as Crockett washes over his face with the frigid water, drops flying off the strands of his hair as he stands back up and dries himself. "Christ, that should help..." he mumbles to himself, walking back over to you. "I'd prefer if it was just a you and I event. It's easier for me to keep track of just one person, and it might be a bit troublesome to bring him along in his current state. That's up to you though, if you don't want to come along then you don't have to."

"Would it be safe though?"

"I can keep you safe during this trip, I promise. If you decide to come along then I won't try to drag you along anywhere else, and I have some muscles on call if things somehow go to shit- er, sorry for the language. You still have that gun Cammy gave you, right?" he asks, and you slowly nod. The gun and different holsters given to you by her are still buried in your dresser drawer, out of sight and out of mind. "If you want to come along with me then I think it would be fine for you to bring it along, especially if it will make you feel safer. You have my word though, you won't have to use them on this trip."

Crockett sounds rather confident about that, and you can't but want to trust him. But it's your choice, you don't even have to go. Seeing your mother might be a good thing though, and if you're really that worried then you're sure you could make Lawrence tag along- whether you should make him is another question though. If it's just you and Crockett then maybe that will be the easiest solution, even if you do feel nervous about it...
We should tag along, but Law should stay at the safe house, he's too... obvious.
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I'm a terrible person, I know
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"Okay,I'll come with," you nod. With a quick glance over to make sure he hasn't returned yet you make to add, "I won't ask Lawrence to come along."

"It'll be good for you to go down and see her. She doesn't have much in the way of visitors, not unless they're trying to ask her a hundred questions about the fire. It's gotta be awfully lonely for her right now." Crockett speaks about this visit much more fondly than you, and the idea that this is a bit more personal for him starts to creep up.

Not that it should be weird, you remind yourself. This guy was friends with your mother while they were growing up, it shouldn't be weird that he wants to see her. Then again, there was a few years where the two couldn't have really seen each other. You wonder how close the two really were, but can't find a way to ask.

Beeping and the new scent of coffee waifs over, drawing you out of thinking. Crockett begins to fill a thermos full, securing the lid on it before filling a mug for right now. "Don't worry, I'll leave enough for Law," Crockett promises, looking at the amount left in the pot, "And you know what, there's probably enough in here for you too. Want some?" From the grin on his face you can tell he's just teasing, but you go to grab another mug anyways.

"Just one is fine." you say, holding it out for him to fill. When you're returned a newly filled cup you just hold it close to your chest, hoping that it will make your clammy hands stop shaking.


Crockett reminds you that the two of you will go in half an hour, leaving you to dip into his office. You try walking around, looking for Lawrence so that he knows you're heading out. The coffee stays in your hands the entire time, slowly but surely dipping down lower as you sip from it. The bitterness doesn't deter you as much as you thought it would, rather the heat that keeps burning your tongue. Thinking that Lawrence is busy getting checked out, you go back to your bedroom instead. It doesn't feel right calling it that yet, it really just feels like you're staying in someone else's room. Or a prison, as the lack of windows likes to remind you.

It's just your mother, but you can't help but feel the need to look more presentable then you have been. You can't do much with your hair at it's length, but with some brushing and carefully placed bobby pins you pull it back to hide the blonde roots. Clothes in your sizes have been left behind in the dresser and closet, though all of it are nicer than what you have been wearing. You pull out a dress that looks warm and won't make you stick out too much- you hope anyways.

You don't want to stand out and you don't want to look how you have been, and frankly seeing you like this now is a bit strange. No one should suspect that you're the same kid that's been running around on the streets for the past few weeks. And they really shouldn't suspect that you've got a gun hidden under your dress.
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Not yet anyways, you barely managed to put the holster around your calf. Putting a loaded gun there is a nerveracking thought, but you swallow that fear and manage to secure it in place. Over and over you make sure that the gun doesn't stick out, you make sure that no one but you knows that it's there.

A knock at the door and a muffled reminder of the time lets you know that it will have to do. You exit the bedroom, finding Crockett standing a little ways down the hall waiting. "Ready to go?" he asks, turning towards you, "Ah, you're looking rather nice today Ms. Esposito."

"Um-" you turn to make sure there's no one else in the hallway he could be talking to and look down at your hands, smoothing out the already flat cloth. "Thank you, I hope it's not too flashy..."


"And you can't, uh-" Quickly you tug up the hem, just enough to flash the holster against your leg. "You can't see this when I walk, right?"

"Can't notice it at all." Crockett shakes his head. That reassures you a lot, even if you have to get used to walking with it.

"Then I'm ready. Oh except I need to let Lawrence know I'm going out, do you know where he is?" You do know that it's important for him to know that you're going out, but if you actually do look nice right now you also want to show it off a bit. If he calls you cute then you want it to be deserved.

"Doc still has him, but don't worry about it. I let Cammy know, she'll make sure Law hears about it soon." Raising a hand out of his pocket Crockett flashes the keys, reminding you that it's time to follow him.


You sit up front with Crockett, having nothing else to do but wait as he pulls out of the fenced lot. "It's a bit of a drive from here," he explains, "and to take our safest path means going around some busy areas, so it'll be about half an hour." All you do is nod, feeling nervous as you realize how much time alone that means you two have. Even though he's been nothing but nice and helpful you can't stop from putting your guard up, moving in the seat so you're sitting further away from him.

"Feel free to turn the heater up if it's too cold."

"I'm fine." You're not trying to sound rude, and you really hope that isn't the case.

You're alone with someone who can maybe clear some things up for you. It's not that long of a car ride, but it should be enough to ask a question or two. You think about your grandmother and how she's supposed to go in for surgery, yet you can't help but feel like it's not that simple. This is a man that has to know plenty about your mother too, and there's not really a lot of people like that. And even if he doesn't really seem the part, you're reminded that Crockett used to work with the police. And if he's been inside your apartment since the fire, maybe there's some questions you can ask about. Like if there were really bones found in the ashes...
>Melancholic Quest
Wow holy shit it's back
And here i thought i'd never see this shit again
God it's been so long I forgot whay we have or have not talk to him about, just the last conversation ended sorta weird.
Maybe just let the moment pass and see if he wants to start anything.
For the best or the worst, is back I'll try not to disappear randomly like that, things are a little better here
Ferret out some stories about what mom was like back in the day, ease the tension. We've heard a bit from Ace, but just barely.

... if there's any time left, we can ask about the bones in the apartment.
Nothing too heavy right now, you decide. Your fingers intertwine and twist around each other as you try hard to not make it awkward.

"So you and mom..."

"Hm?" Crockett, who had been focused on the white road sprawling before him, takes a moment to glance over at you.

"Did um, were you two g-...uh, good friends growing up?" You don't even try to see what his reaction is to that question, instead you keep your eyes focused on the passing trees. Everywhere around the car now is a varying shade of cold gray and white, but even from here you can see the dark rise of buildings up many miles ahead.

"I'd say so. Lot of middle school and high school was us hanging out."

"With other people too?"

"Sometimes," he laughs, "and then were times where the two of us would just go sneak off."

"From school?" you ask, watching him nod with a guilty smile.

"Or just when things got too busy. Denise hasn't really talked about her family much, has she?" Crockett looks over again to watch you shake your head, a twist forming in the corner of his mouth. "Wouldn't expect so. They weren't the best- ah I shouldn't say that, her older sister was decent. Everyone else in that family all had some kinda chip in their shoulder and abad attitude. Denise would want to leave the house whenever things got a bit too loud."

"Yeah, I can understand that." After you say that Crockett looks ready to speak up, stopping himself with a troubled look.

"Why do you ask? Didn't think I was cool enough to hang out around your mom?" he picks up the conversation again quickly, putting a grin back up.

"No not that," you answer, "It's just that it's kind of hard to think about mom keeping friends around." This again wipes the smile off of Crockett's face, this time replaced with a dumbfounded look.

"She not have a lot around the house?" he asks carefully, now dividing his attention between you and the road more.

"No, I don't really remember her inviting over people a lot..." you start to think about it more, trying to figure out if there were any times that maybe you were forgetting, "I think a bit when I was younger, but I can't really remember a lot of times. She never really went out ever either."
"Hmm..." Crockett stares out at the road now, deep in whatever thoughts he has. It's quiet beyond the sounds of the road, but you don't really have the nerve to speak up right now. The silence is intimating, if only because it lets you think about how locked in you are with a man you haven't known long.

"We were-" When he speaks up finally his words come to sudden stop, a deep sigh escaping him as he reevaluates what he was about to tell you. "Denise had friends growing up, as hard as that may be to believe. I was one-- Your father was one. She had some rough edges but people could get along with her for the most part. I did notice that, as we got older, that temper she sometimes had started to grow. Always thought it was her parents rubbing off on her, especially when the drinking really started. When she was really hitting the sauce she would sometimes talk about how there was something wrong with her but how she didn't know how to fix it. She said that sometimes that thing would make her hopeless or angry, but I knew that underneath was a Denise that I still- ...whatever she's done to hurt you, I'm sorry that it happened. I won't say it's not her fault, but she loves you."

You can tell that it hurt him to talk like that, and you regret making him do that.

"I'm sorry, I didn't mean to make you think bad things about her." Your nails scratch against the seatbelt as you grip it tightly, searching for anything to keep you occupied right now.

"I've been through enough of Denise's meltdowns. There's not a whole lot that could make me stop calling her a friend. Hell, even now," Crockett's hand comes to rest over his chest, "I still get excited about meeting up with her. She was always my favorite person to be around."

Your hand travels from seatbelt to the center of your chest, feeling the ring hanging beneath rest against your palm. "I think I know how that feels," you say quietly. The knot in your stomach begins to loosen. You begin to think back to the photo Crockett saved from the apartment, the baby photo of you with your mother. It makes you think about him going through the apartment and you try to ask him some more questions.

"So when you-" you start to ask, but the thought of a body burning in your room sends a chill down your spine. You quickly point to the radio so that you don't have to finish that question. "Is it okay if we listen to something?"

"Sure, play whatever you want."

Giving free control of the radio certainly helps make the car ride more relaxed for you. Even just hearing a weather report makes you feel less alone out in the countryside, though that feeling doesn't quite fade till you pass by the first row of houses. As much as you wanted to get back in town, you now feel the need to duck down low in your seat. Crockett notices the efforts and tries to reassure you that that's not needed, but you still find yourself sinking lower in the seat anytime a car pulls up.

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The walk inside the hospital could not be quick enough. The wind nips at your ankles and you take extra care to make sure the gun doesn't show, all while trying to keep a low profile. Crockett walks in with much more confidence, and you're perfectly fine with just following his lead. Before you two had left the car, Crockett gave you a fake name to use in public.

"Giovanna..." you whisper under your breath, wanting to memorize it by heart. It's nothing you would have chose, but it's best for you to follow orders for now. You continue repeating that name, even as you're forced to keep half a step behind Crockett lest you get lost in the swarm of people walking through the hallways. It's busy, much more busy than you'd like, and you opt to just keep your head down and eyes fixed on the jacket in front of you.

Crockett walks over to one of the desks, speaking to the nurse currently sitting at attention "Hello, we're here to see this patient..." You can't see it, but he must have handed over a paper with the name and room number written down. Smart, you figure, so that no one can be a nosy eavesdropper.

"I'm sorry sir, I don't think she's allowed to-" the nurse trails off as Crockett pulls a small wallet shaped item from his pocket, flipping it open to show her the contents.

"It's fine, we have permission," Crockett gestures at himself and you, "Doctor Wallace, she can vouch for us. Do you happen to know where she is?"

"Oh um, she's currently overseeing a surgery right now. Uh..." the nurse takes the wallet from his hand, peering at it closer before looking him and you over once more. "Okay, yes. I'll have to let you in though, we have to keep that patients room locked. Just give me one moment here."

You and Crockett wait by closely, trying to keep to yourselves as different staff members and visitors walk by. Each time someone walks a little too close you take another step toward Crockett, practically bumping into him as you try to avoid any attention. "It's fine," he whispers to you, "No one is going to try anything here. Too many cameras, too many witnesses."

"Yeah..." your hand reaches up to fidget with the ring under your dress again, twisting and turning it. Even without being afraid of who's all around you, another fear starts to crawl up your throat. If your mother really does have street rot, you can't imagine how awful she must look. Seeing her drunk and hungover was always normal for you, but deathly ill isn't something you want to imagine. The idea of seeing her with sickly thin skin, stretched across a dying frame of a body- it's nothing you want to think about. But it's something you're going to have to deal with very soon, and you feel sick when the nurse finally comes over.
"Alright, if you two are ready now." She speaks in too happy of a tone, somehow unable to realize that you're unprepared for what awaits you in the room. You follow right behind Crockett again, resisting the urge to grab onto his coat whenever someone passes by a little too close. Your small group comes to a stop once the nurse finds room 201, bringing out a large ring of keys to unlock the door before you.

"Now, I don't know if you've visited her before," the nurse begins to explain, "but sometimes she can get a little moody. She's been behaving rather well the past few days, but if she starts acting up just press the red button by her bed. We'll send a doctor down to help then."

"Right, speaking of doctors..." Crockett speaks up as she pushes down on the now unlocked handle, "Would I be able to speak to whichever one is currently supervising her?"

"Ah, lets see..." she looks over to a clock in the hallway, putting off opening the door a bit longer. "I can see if he's down in the break room. He might have a few minutes to talk. Just stay here and I'll go check."

"Thank you kindly." To your relief, Crockett steps up to enter the room first. You nod in thanks to the nurse too, still dreading the first look at your mother. As he opens the door and walks in you hold your breath, following behind while looking anywhere but the bed.

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You look up at Crockett and see a warm and deeply relieved smile spread across his face. Ignoring the pounding of the heart in your chest you finally dare a look, breath catching in your throat.

Aside from looking more pale than usual, your mother looks the same as she did the last time you saw her. She seems to be asleep, curled up with her hair falling all over the place. Crockett continues to walk towards her and the footsteps make her eyes open, dull blue squinting in front of her.

"Go away," she grumbles, her words groggy and slurred as she curls up to herself more. "I don't want any doctors right now."

"You know I was never smart enough for that."

As soon as Crockett speaks your mother's eyes shoot wide open and she rises up from the bed, a bit shaky but much better than you had imagined her being.

"Ace? Are you really here?" she asks, a strange sweetness in her voice. You start to edge back towards the door, feeling a bit uncomfortable with watching this. Right away your mother tries to rise out of the bed, stopping only because of the IV drip attached to her arm.

"Yeah, it's me." He looks ready to come to her side, stopping a few feet from the bed. The hand he had began reaching out to her with stops, and instead he motions over to where you stand. "I didn't come alone though, I brought-"

"Don?" The name hits Crockett harder than you, something you can read easily on his face. You take the initiative to walk up closer, hoping that she'll be able to recognize you better up close.

"It's me, mom." Your voice comes out quieter than you wanted, but even if she apparently has trouble focussing her eyes your mother can still recognize your voice.

"Delilah, Delilah of course. Right..." Her hand comes to rest over her mouth, looking sick.

"I came to visit-" you start to say, a knocking at the door pulling Crockett away. He speaks with the same nurse from before, who seems to have found the man he wanted to see. All during the conversation your mother lays back down in bed, turning her back to the door. You begin to wonder if this was a bad idea and you start hoping that Crockett will pull you away from all this. He does motion you over to the door, but doesn't offer any relief.
"Stay in here for a few minutes," he whispers, "I'm going to go talk with her doctor. I'm just trying to dig up a little information, I won't be long. Will you be fine here?"

"Will I be safe?" you ask, not really wanting to say out loud that you feel weird being around your mother like this.

"Yeah. The doors are locked, and only staff members can get in. If things start getting to be too much, just wave down a nurse and meet me in the waiting room."

You nod, adding "Hurry!" as he leaves you behind in the room. The door clinks shut, and you give the handle a test. Apparently it locks from the inside too, something he failed to mention. With no quick way to escape, you're ready to confide yourself to the corner till Crockett returns.

"...are they gone?"

Your mother's voice barely travels over, whispering even though she is turned away from you.

"Y-...Yeah, they're gone." you consider not answering, but it seems that staying quiet won't be enough to trick her right now. She's somewhat aware of things, even if it's not well.

With your heart pounding uncontrollably, you somehow manage to take a few steps closer. Her cowering below the blankets stop, and your mother returns to laying on her back. The two of you remain quiet, all while you look around the room for signs of anything being off. Aside from the locked door though you wouldn't have guessed this was a quarantined type of room, and you remind yourself to ask Crockett is this is normal or not.

"Your hair," she speaks up with dry words, "it looks different. It is different, right...?"

"I had to dye it..." For anyone else this might be a normal conversation, but you worry if your mother can't remember how your hair had looked before.

"That's right, we had matching hair didn't we?" she breathes out slowly, looking up at the celling. "I liked that."

You haven't let your guard down, but your mother seems to be in a rather okay mood. It feels like you could talk to her about some important matters right now, as long as you're careful. She's the only one you know for sure was in the apartment before and during the fire. That's not a pleasant conversation at all, and it could hamper her current mood. It could be easier to just hold some small talk with her, or none at all...
>"Delilah, Delilah of course. Right..."

Small talk. She seems to be a bit out of it so lets see what she can remember about current events, rather than asking about the case or the fire or the stds.
I'd want to know, but we should play the compassionate daughter, just for a bit, until she can think straight.
Just keep the conversation light, nothing agitating or anything. If or when Ace gets mom released and back to gram's safe house, we can... break out the big guns.
It's reluctant, but you pull up a seat next to your mother's bedside. She doesn't look over as you do it, instead intently staring at the space in front of her. Occasionally her eyebrows scrunch down, and the closer you look the more you can see that her eyes are darting about. Whatever she's watching isn't visible for you, though you try hard to find what's holding her attention.

"Mom...?" you speak softly, not wanting to scare her. When she doesn't respond you repeat it, a little louder this time. "Mom, are you um..."

"...I'm awake." Her words come out slow and deliberate as she begins rubbing at her eyes. "I'm fine, I'm fine-" The words keep repeating but they aren't directed at you every time. Eventually they fade away, and with a foggy expression peeking out from behind her hair your mother looks at you. "You, what about you?" There's no emotion on her face, not one that you can read from. It doesn't make you feel scared, but you can't help but think empty while watching her.

"I'm okay. I'm just over at grandma's-...just over at grandma's." You put up a smile despite feeling uncomfortable under your mother's gaze. She doesn't respond, only continuing to stare at you with a blank look. As you try to think of ways to make it stop her face finally moves, scrunching up into a more familiar look.

"She took you over to that...to that drug hideout they have." The bitterness that you had grown used to hearing begins to drip back into her words, albeit calmer and slower. You prepare to hear whatever rant she has brewing up but the efforts go to waste as she pulls closer to herself. "I told him, I said I didn't want you anywhere...anywhere near that." The sudden change in her demeanor catches you off guard. That means your mother isn't so out of it, not as bad as you had previously seen her. Maybe that means she won't be stuck like that forever- once the quarantine problem is taken care of.

"Don't worry-" you start to hesitate to speak up with her, vicious memories of her snapping at you 'talking back' coming back. It seems impossible for her to do that to you now and even if she did it would lack the sting she previously held. That's what you're hoping anyways when you speak again. "All that kind of stuff is gone from there." As the words come out you realize that you have no idea if that's true, but that's something you can worry about later. It's enough to calm your mother down, who sits there nodding and repeating 'Good." softly to herself.
"And um.." Looking around the room, you try to think of things to talk about that won't rile her up. "I'm there and grandma's there. There's a doctor too and his niece who's a nurse- they're from Italy. And my friend Lawrence is staying there too.

"Lawrence..." she repeats the name back and you nod.

"Yeah, he's like my best friend and stuff. He's came with me before but um, he isn't feeling too good today though so he stayed behind. Usually he comes with me cause he's all big and strong but Mr. Crockett is enough today. Oh and he's staying over there too-"

"Is Ace nice to you?" Your mother asks the question so suddenly and you begin to feel nervous about answering.

"Yes. Mr. Crockett has been nothing but nice to me."

"That's good..." Her hand begins to clutch the front of her hospital gown, blonde hair falling over her face to obscure it. Her wavering words come out clearly enough, "...I haven't been very nice to Ace."

You look towards the door and back at her, unsure of what to do if she starts to cry. "He's only said good things about you. He still calls you a friend!" you force up a smile again, hoping that it's right to tell her this. There's a sinking feeling in your chest as she shakes her head.

"I didn't do by him right, everyone thought he was the father," your mother's hands travel over her stomach as she speaks, "even Don... his mother pushed for the wedding anyways though and then when you were born it was obvious. We all knew who your daddy was."

You feel breathless for a moment. "He was...?" It's information you're not really sure how to handle, and voices outside the door only make your heart race faster. Through the semi opaque glass you can see that Crockett has returned, another man standing before him. They're having a conversation, but each time you nervously glance over to see if Crockett heard any of it the more animated his movements become. His voice becomes louder, and you're sure that the conversation would be clearer if you moved in a little closer.

"Hold on a second," you start to tell her, rising up from the chair, "I think he's talking to a-"

"Doctor!" she hisses under her breath, grabbing your sleeve and yanking you back over.

"Mom w-wait, that hurts-"

"Delilah, listen to me." You feel forced to look back at your mother, staring back at her with a clarity she hasn't had in a long while. Not completely there, and the tremor in her hands are more than worrisome. Her bright blue eyes look over your face with wide pupils, sweat beginning to drip down her face.

"I-I'm listening." The urge to struggle against her grasp is strong, half out of curiosity for the growing argument outside and half from the fear ingrained deep inside.
"Don't let them know you're my daughter, whatever you do." Each word seems to tighten her grip, her fingers digging unnoticed into your arm. Her chest begins to heave quickly, breaths coming out quicker and shorter as she peers at the door. "I'm fine, I don't need to be here. They've made me, they've made me all messed up. I can't think straight. I'm fine, I swear I'm fine!" Her other hand comes to hold you, as her warning begins to spiral back down into near incoherent rambling.

"Let go, y-you need to l-let go of me..." You try not to panic, grabbing at at her wrists in attempt to loosen her grip. The force of her hold begins to loosen, only slightly, but she seemingly hears your words.

"I'm not going to hurt you. I don't want to. I don't want...I don't want you here...!" Again her grip tightens and the anxiety in you rises. She doesn't say anything new, just repeating those same lines over and over again as she looks down in confusion.

You want to try asking what she means, but you fear pushing her too far again. It might be too late for that though, the pain in your arms serves as a good reminder. The red button by her bed looks tempting, but you're want to push it fades some as you hear Crockett's voice raise up again outside. If you try hard enough then you should be able to pull away from your mother, and with a little luck be quick enough to pick up on what the problem out there seems to be.
I wonder if we can shush, pat her a bit.
Just calm her down instead of making a scene.
A sore wrist is better than pulling Ace away from his shit or pulling the alarm.
Try to reassure her that we'll be fine, Ace won't let anything happen. Hopefully calm her down to not draw attention.

We can interrogate Ace later.
caching up in the archive rn, but
holy fuck is this quest is depressing
You grab hold of her hands now trying to keep her quiet.

"I'm not staying here," you try to assure her, "after this I'm going back to grandma's with Mr. Crockett." As you look down at where she's grabbing you a thin red line is visible against one of her wrists. You don't really get the chance to investigate it long as you suddenly feel your mother's forehead falls against your shoulder.

"I don't want to be here anymore," she whimpers, "This place, I can't think straight here. I want to go home. I hate it here. I hate the doctors. I hate how foggy everything is. I hate being kept in this room. I want to be able to think right and...and..." Whatever train of thought she had begins to leave, something that she's still able to realize and get angry about. "Don't stay here, don't let them keep you here. Everything will be cloudy and they won't let you go home. They don't care about how I... what's happening to me..."

Her body begins to shake again as tears roll down her face, leaving dark spots on your dress. You look back towards the door but see that it's only you and her for a while longer. It doesn't quite feel right but you rest your hands against her shoulders, slowly bringing her in to a hug. "It's o-okay..." There's still a rapid beating in your chest as you recover from being grabbed, and you tread into this new territory with your mother carefully. There's no signs of resisting or pushing you away, something you wish she had done less. But that's all in the past, and right now she's a sobbing mess in your arms.

"You're doing okay," you tell her while unsure if that's true or not, "Mr. Crockett is working really hard to get you out of here. You just have to wait a while longer and then..." You have no idea what would come next. She would end up coming to the safe house, you'd imagine. How all that would go, with her and your grandmother there, is a whole other story. And if it turned out that she didn't like anyone else there, or if she ends up stuck like this forever-

"I'll tell you about all the nice people I met. And I'll let my hair go blonde so that we match again." None of the stuff you're telling her right now really matters to her, and you have doubts that she'll remember it anyways, but even just a soothing tone seems to help her. "And you can meet my friend again, and then I can tell you about um...about how I want to get m-married and stuff."

"Married...?" It takes a few tries before your mother is able to look up at you, cheeks shiny as they dry from her tears. "You can't get married yet you're only...you're only... h-how old are you baby?"

"I'm almost fourteen." Though it hurts that she can't remember that you still smile, fully aware that she's still holding on to you tightly.
"Fourteen, fourteen...I knew that. I think I knew that..." she nods to herself, confirming the information. "Married at fourteen. You can't be married at fourteen."

"Well, I'm not getting married yet." Your cheeks begin to feel hot and you start to feel embarrassed for telling her that. "I'll wait till I'm uh, ready."

Just as you had begun to think that she was going to be fine the door to the hallway finally opens, giving you the unfiltered voices of two angry men.

"-and just so you know officer, we require that you let us know in advanced when you plan on stopping by to visit one of our high risk patients!" The doctor that Crockett had been arguing with stands with the doorknob still at hand, looking right over to where you and your mother stand as Crockett glares at him. The anger from their conversation seems to have found a new target, something your mother must understand already.

"Scarlett!" the doctor shouts down the hall, making your mother flinch and hold on to you tighter. The nurse who led you in before returns back with a worried look on her face, not looking like she wants to be there at all.

"Yes doc-"

"You know the rules for this patient!" he snaps, striding quickly over to the bed. He wastes no time in pulling you away, his actions making your mother recoil back. The firm grip on your shoulders and this loud and angry man that you don't know is more than enough to set you into panic mode again as instincts tell you to get away. He manages to pull you into the hallway and your eyes start to water, breathing becoming painful as you try to wiggle free.

"Hey now!" You're pulled away from the doctor with a more gentle motion as Crockett leads you from him. "You don't go grabbing girls like that."

"I'm just trying to do my job. We have very strict and very specific rules for this patient and- Scarlett! Go get them!" he stops to order the nurse down the hall, who keeps her sights to the ground as she says 'yes sir' and runs off. "If you're insisting on just barging in like this anyways than I have to follow every other rule right down to the T. We were lucky that the door was still locked on the inside, but you just left this girl in here with her. Do you realize how dangerous that could have been?!" The last part comes out as a hiss, finally attempting to keep his voice hushed.

"All they were doing was talking-"
"The patient was able to grab her and that's more than enough to put her in danger." The man points at you as he says this and through scattered thoughts you remember why your mother was being kept here. "I'm just attempting to keep the patients and visitors at this hospital safe. We have specific orders to follow and I'll be damned if some gung-ho asshole with a badge is going to come in here and let some kid get infected."

You're not sure what badge he's talking about, but you can tell that Crockett is still more than heated. The hand that not on your shoulder curls up into a tight fist, and he forces his words out through gritted teeth. "I understand. If we could please just finish up our visit here today, I will try not to break those rules again."

"You'll have to wait."

The doctor isn't going to budge on this issue or explain it either, rather just allowing Crockett to squirm. The tension from their argument still hangs in the air, but when he looks down at you his expression softens up some. "I'm sorry about scaring you like that. You do know why we have to keep her here, right?"

All you can manage is a nod and you attempt to hide your still shaking hands. Scarlett returns shortly after, carrying a pair of handcuffs with.

"Now hold on a moment." Crockett's initial reaction upon seeing them is anger but the doctor shakes his head.

"This is part of the rules. We'll unlock the door so you can leave the room, but that means Ms. Denise in there has to be attached to her bedside."

The corner of Crockett's mouth begins to rise up to a scowl. "Like a criminal."

"Well yes, she's still under investigation isn't she?" The man turns to the nurse again, gesturing to the room. "Can you secure the patient, or do I have to?"

"I would prefer it if you would," Scarlett admits, "I hate doing it."

"Fine." He takes the handcuffs from her, receiving the key for them next. "Then in the mean time, if you would take Ms....?" The doctor looks towards you for the answer but Scarlett seems eager to answer.
"Ms. Giovanna." she announces happily, looking proud that she was able to remember the fake name.

"Yes. Let's hope your memory doesn't fail you again on our rules. Take Ms. Giovanna here and give her a look over." He anticipates Crockett speaking out against this and holds his hand up to silence him before he can try to speak up. "She doesn't have to, but if she wishes to stay in this hospital then we simply need our nurse here to give her a quick look over to make sure she's alright. What Denise has isn't airborne and I doubt that you'd have caught anything. But safety is our biggest priority here and I saw how she grabbing you. We simply can't take any risks in letting this spread."

"I um..." you look between Scarlett and the doctor and end up taking a step behind the only person around to protect you. "It's not going to be anything w-... I don't have to take off anything d-do I?"

"Of course not!" She laughs, unaware of why that question is so important to you. Not wanting to push your luck with the staff any further you agree and step towards her.

"Just take one of the examination rooms down on the left, then bring her back." The doctor tries to enter the room again but Crockett follows behind you and Scarlett, an anxious look spread across his face.

"Hold on, do you need me to come with?" he asks.

"It's nothing invasive, I promise! Oh but, if that'll make you feel more comfortable?" Scarlett looks down at you, waiting for an answer.

It would be easy to bring Crockett with, and then both of you will be back with your mother rather quickly.
Despite getting yelled at earlier, Scarlett still smiles nicely at you as she waits an answer. It might not be too bad to go alone with her. Crockett said so himself, a hospital would be a terrible place to try and make a move. Just go with her and be quick, and then Crockett can get some privacy with her.
Or, if you feel safe enough with this nurse, you can give the two a bit longer to talk alone. What they'd end up talking about you're not sure, but it might give you a chance to talk with this nurse and ask a few questions.
Have Ace stay behind, we can handle some alone time with the nurse.
Get some answers on why Momma D is on lockdown.
Let Ace stay behind, he did say there'd be too many cameras and too many witnesses for anyone to try anything.

We still have the gun to draw attention with if everything comes crashing down.

Avoid referring to mom as... well, mom. But clearing up why she's in quarantine at all should be fine, she doesn't exactly look like she has street rot.

... more like she's... malnourished.
Nice OP, but I think it's missing a horse dick desu senpai
"That's okay, I'll be fine."

You can't say that Crockett looks entirely fine with that but he allows you to go with Scarlett down the hall. With a look back you try to signal that everything will be okay but you're subtly is gone when the nurse looks back at him and waves. "Don't worry sir, I'll bring her right back!"

Her eagerness to do her job right is a little overwhelming right now, especially since you can still feel your heartbeat racing like crazy. Scarlett feels the need to greet the various other nurses she passes in the hallway, nearly getting caught up in some quick gossip before remembering the important task at hand. "This one should be fine," she muses while peering into a darkened room. A quick flick of the light reveals it to be a currently unused examination room and she happily ushers you in.

"So what do we have to do?" you ask, watching as the door clicks shut and puts the two of you alone. The echo from the lock doesn't do anything to calm you down as you soon realize that there's no other escape from the room. Surely if you needed to call out for help then someone would come rushing from outside, these room aren't soundproof. Probably.

"Oh, if you just wanna jump up on the table there." She walks over to a set of drawers, digging through the supplies inside. Just as you climb up you feel the gun against your leg brush up against the paper laid against the table. You waste no time in yanking your dress back down to cover it, praying hard that she hadn't caught a glimpse.

Ready to ask what next, you nearly fall off when a loud static comes from where Scarlett stands.

"Sorry!" she apologizes, revealing a tiny radio as she lowers the volume. The fuzz begins to come and go as she searches for a clear station, not really getting much luck. "Didn't know I had it up so high. Amazing how loud these things can get, right? Yet it's small enough for me to carry in my scrubs, I love it."

"Is this part of the exam?" you ask, earning a fit of snickering from the nurse.

"What? No, I just figured it would lighten the mood a bit." Somehow something almost clear comes through and she leaves the radio sitting on the counter top. "I know he might seem like a dick, but Dr. Greene is a good doctor. We've just been a little short staffed here so everyone is a little riled up, so whenever something goes wrong... You saw how it was."

"Right..." you wait for any kind of directions but Scarlett is more than happy to tap along with the song playing on the radio, singing the lyrics quietly to herself. "Are we waiting on something then?"

"Hm? Oh yeah the examination. Um let's see..." She comes to stand before you, giving a quick look up and down. "I don't see nothing. She just grabbed you, right?"

"Something like that," you touch over the tender areas she had held you, "But I don't think there's going to be that big of a bruise later."
"Then I think this exam is over. Even said it himself that you were going to be fine." Scarlett gives a shrug and sighs, "But I guess being careful is part of our job. He was probably freaking out so badly cause you're a minor. It's bad enough watching adults get sick, but kids? It just breaks that man's heart. Hell, we had an aunt bring in her niece the other day who was in bad shape. A bit older than you, bunch of cute freckles on her face and this long auburn kinda hair. But somehow a girl like her got street rot and now she's- Dammit, I'm sorry. I can't be telling you this stuff and I really shouldn't. I guess I'm just overworked."

"It's fine, I don't mind talking to you."

"That's good," she smiles, "I like talking to you too. So that lady, her name is Denise um, something foreign sounding. Is she your mother?"

You stop from saying yes, biting your tongue. "No, we're not related. I know her really well though."

"Ah I see, so a family friend." Scarlett nods, "I'm not trying to get too picky in your father's business or anything. You just don't see many cops bringing kids to the hospital like this."

Hearing the word father makes your stomach lurch, but you don't dare break that lie or the one about Crockett still being a cop.

"It's weird I know. I've never seen someone in the hospital get handcuffed before either."

Scarlett grimaces at the mention of that. "Yeah, not really something we have to do often either. I hate doing it, but we have to after what apparently happened before."

"Oh? Did she do something bad?" Your curiosity spikes but you try not to seem too eager. She doesn't need to see that she's blabbering on to you when she shouldn't be, and as sneaky as it is you need to use that to your advantage.

"From what I heard, she has to be handcuffed during visits because she attacked one of the nurses."

"Attacked? What did she do?" The spots on your arm begin ache and you begin to worry that you were in more trouble than you has thought.

"You saw how she is. Mood swings, out bursts, getting grabby. It's that last part that's dangerous though. Denise was going through a really difficult day, I think some other police officers had dropped by to ask her about the fire she was involved with. These two guys though, they didn't know how to take it slow. Too many hard questions all at once and she got all worked up, freaking out and trying to leave. A nurse came in to calm her down and got attacked in the process. You have to deal with that sometimes but they had just found out her blood work came back positive. It caused a huge scare since we had no idea despite her being here so long. I still can't tell that she has it."
"Is that what's keeping her here?" you ask, "Or is it all of the legal stuff?"

"Really, really shouldn't be telling you this stuff," Scarlett takes a look at the door and then leans closer to you and whispers, "but I'm really not ready to get back to work yet, so keep this a secret between us. Got it?"


"Don't take my word on any of this stuff, I just pick up pieces here and there. I haven't followed Denise's case all that closely, I've been way too busy. I know it has something to do with an apartment fire and them thinking she started it, and that the reason she came here in the first place was because of the injuries she got there. But apparently, despite all the hubbub about it there's not a lot of solid proof putting the responsibility on her."

"Wait, really?" you're surprised by this news, Scarlett nodding in response.

"At least, not enough that would require us to legally keep her. Our setups for keeping criminals are a little different, she kind of has a special arrangement."

"So that means she has to stay here because she's sick?"

"Actually no. We highly advise patients to stay here, but we can't legally keep them just because they're sick. Just like we can't force someone with AIDs to stay here, we can't force a street rot patient to stay here just because they're infected."

"Then why is she being forced to stay here?" The paper beneath you crinkles as your hands grab at it, speaking harsher than you intended to.

One of Scarlett's fingers come to tap against her temple, giving you the answer right away. "The only thing that might be keeping her here is a passing assessment. They probably don't want to release her till she's a better up here."

You look down at your black boots, "I thought she would be better by now. Do you think she's going to stay like this forever?"

"I really can't say for sure, and I don't want to get your hopes up or break them either. I think there are times when Denise can think normal, or at least better than she is now. There's days when she seems to be on a quick path to recovery, but then the next day she's back to square one..." Scarlett sighs, leaning against the counter. "Even the hospital administrator sometimes stops by to check in on her. She's got all this attention from the doctors, her injuries from the fire should have healed up nicely, not even street rot seems to be hurting her. I don't get why she's still so..."
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"Crazy." you sigh, earning a sad look from her.

"I wouldn't really say crazy. Just maybe a little sick still. Who am I to know for sure anyways, I'm just a nurse. It might take a little more TLC, but I'm sure we can help Denise get better." Scarlett might not understand what's been going on, but you can't help but appreciate her attempts to make you feel better about this. "Don't let anything I said about her freak you out. Talking to people she knows is good for her, focus on having a nice visit now."

You nod, jumping down from the table as she puts the radio back into her pocket. Scarlett walks ahead again, once more greeting the other people she passes in the hallway. While keeping your head down you notice the water stains and cracks in some of the walls, the various attempts to fill in and paint over small holes scattered over. The place is in worse condition than you had first thought and you begin to wonder if the lack in quality extends to more than just the building.

The door to your mother's room is left slightly propped open, meaning that your mother has to now be cuffed to her bed. You try to prepare for that sight, peeking in first as Scarlett waits outside. She grows confused as you stand there, looking into the room but not entering. She leans in to ask if there's anything wrong but catches on to what you're looking at.

With only full use of one arm your mother is rather limited in movement, but with her free hand she's pulled Crockett down closer to face level. Her mouth is moving but you can't hear what she's saying, but whatever it is it makes Crockett reach out and comfort her. With his hands resting on her shoulders and hers moving from his collar to his face you start to feel butterflies in your stomach. You end moving away before seeing what they do next, but Scarlett's red face tells you more than you need to know.

"Ah, um..!" she stammers a bit, pushing you a little further away from the door. "Maaaybe you can just give them a moment or two. I have to go back to my desk now, but if they're still at it then feel free to come down."

Scarlett gives you an awkward wave as she leaves you to deal with this small crisis alone. You have no idea if they're still kissing or not, or if it was your mother doing all the kissing or the other way around or if it was even a real thing. It's enough to make your head spin and you just get the tugging feeling that it wasn't something you were supposed to see.

You try to figure out if it would be better to try and walk in now or if you should give them a few more minutes...
Give them another minute, we can always slip in if people get nosy.
God Del's hair looks so fucking cute.
Guess we waiting it outside then. And they to get Scarlett to keep her mouth shut about what's going down in there.
We don't want the "wrong people" finding out about something like this, just incase.
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You try to find the courage to peek around the door again but it's a quickly fleeting feeling.

Scarlett has stopped only a little ways down, looking over a chart left in the basket of a door. She looks over as you delicately weave between the wheelchair being pushed by. "Oh hey, what's up?" she asks, facing in your direction as you stumble to a halt in front of her. "Giving your dad and his girlfriend a little alone time?" There's a little bit of an attempt to hide her snickering but not very well, growing louder when she sees just how alarmed you are about this. "Don't worry, I still get embarrassed when my parents get all lovey dovey around me-"

"They're not, h-he's not...!" The words fail to come out properly, as you become more flustered and uncoordinated. You motion for her to bend down so you can lean in and cup her ear, whispering so that you don't trip over the words again. "Please d-don't go talking about this with anyone, please?"

"Oh?" Her interest peaks immediately and she start acting sneaky with you. "What's wrong? Are they not...?"

"No, they're not. My d-... He's not dating her. Aunt Denise isn't thinking right and it was just a m-..it was just a mistake. But you really can't tell anyone else about it though." You hope that Scarlett can't hear the sound of your teeth gritting together. Lying so hard and on the fly like this drives you crazy and you absolutely hate doing it. Scarlett is eating it all up, every last word, and you hope it's enough to keep to keep her quiet. "If people start hearing that they did that then it could ruin his investigation."

"So he is here for work?" she whispers back, keeping a shifty eye on anyone who passes. You nod just to lead her along.

"Yeah, it's work and it's personal. Dad really doesn't want to mess up this case for me, he knows how much M-...how much my auntie means to me." You swallow hard, trying not to think about it too hard. "Promise to keep it a secret?"

Scarlett stands up straight and proper and put ups a stern look, "We practice confidentiality here." When she looks back down at you a smirk spreads cheek to cheek as she extends her pinky towards you, "And to make it even more secure."

A sigh of relief leaves your lips as you meet Scarlett half way, pinkies interlocked. "Thank you so, so much."

"Any time."

You stand by and watch as Scarlett leaves you once more, feeling just a bit better about this. With a heavy chest you turn back, walking slowly and counting the steps. By the time you see the number 201 again you kick yourself for not coming up with a plan in case you return back to them still at it. Taking one last long and deep breath you force the first step into the room, bracing yourself for whatever may be going on.
It's oddly silent when you walk in and you find Crockett not standing over your mother's bed like before but rather sitting in one of the chairs, too far away for her to reach. He doesn't seem to notice that you have walked in, instead he stares at a photo resting in his hand. You approach slowly, picking up on the heavy breathing coming from the bed. With her back facing the door your mother lays curled up in the bed, her back shifting up and down as she takes slow breaths. Even after being away from her for so long you can still remember what it sounds like when she's asleep and now is definitely one of those times.

You're tiptoeing by the time Crockett finally looks up, his eyes reddened. "There you are," he speaks quietly, pushing the photo back into his coat. "I was about to come looking for you."

"Is mom asleep?" you ask, already knowing the answer. He rises from the chair and nods, making sure to look away from you in the meantime.

"Yeah, afraid so. I don't think we're going to get much else from her today." Crockett stands beside her, giving a glance over her sleeping form. He's thinking about doing something, you can read it by the conflicted look on his face. Hesitantly his hand begins to reach out, stopping half way through. You start to feel a lump form in your throat again, even more so when his hand continues moving.

Gently he pushes some the hair from her face, not disturbing her in the process. "We'll see you again soon, Denise."

On the way out you two stop to thank Scarlett at the front desk. You spot Dr. Greene on the way out too and give him a nod from across the waiting room, something he barely manages to return back before being pulled away by work.

"Stuck up." scoffs Crockett.

Even though being back in the car feels a thousand times safer than being in the hospital you almost feel sad for leaving already. It wasn't a long visit, the ride down here took just as much time. It didn't help that it hadn't ended well for either of you, if you were to guess by Crockett's more reserved demeanor.

"We can come down another time kiddo, don't worry about it." The car pulls out of the parking lot and Crockett takes a different path than the one you took to come here. "She was happy to see you though, I could tell."

You stay quiet, the scene from earlier playing over in your head. It's impossible for you to call who's fault it was or if it was mutual or what the hell could have happened after, but it's something that freaks you out. This is the first time you've seen her kiss someone that wasn't your dad, and you really don't know how to deal with it. Talking about it with Crockett feels far too wrong and awkward, but he's the only person who could give you a straight answer.

Talk to Crockett about what happened earlier?
Nope. You keep a lid on that shit for now babby girl.
We've done enough today, time to head home, and cuddle with Law.
No point in making the drive back more tense than it has to be, we can always bring it up to him later.
"Thanks for bringing me." You try not to look bothered, but after Crockett puts up a warm grin and returns his sights back to the road your own smile fades. The radio remains on from the ride earlier, the music replaced this time by local news. A bit boring but it fills up the space between you two. Crockett doesn't seem to mind either, too busy with whatever thoughts preoccupy him right now. Thoughts regarding your mother no doubt, but you try not to dwell on that thought too long.

-The disappearance of another teenager has been reported as of last night. After not returning from school the parents of Alysia Taylor have been in contact with police, hoping to find any information on the whereabouts of their daughter. Alysia is around five feet tall, with bl-

The voice stops as Crockett changes the station, "Lets find something a bit more cheery." You're fine with the change in stations, settling with whatever he sees fit. Anything but silence or an awkward conversation is appreciated.


It's an easy drive back, though it feels like forever by the time you finally spot the house again. Which is a weird way to think about the dull gray concrete hidden out in the middle of the country, but it's something you figured you need to get used to. You're lead inside by Crockett, who quickly lets you know that he can't stay.

"I've got some more business to take care of. But if everything goes well I should see you again tonight, or at least in the morning. Cammy should be around if you need anything, or Mrs. Esposito if she's not sleeping."

You say goodbye to him and Crockett leaves, now in a sudden hurry. The lights in the main room do nothing to make it feel any warmer, and the cold gray walls start to swallow you up in loneliness. With a sigh you start to walk to Lawrence's room, hoping to find him awake and not busy. Your footsteps are greeted by heavier, louder ones and after rounding the corner you meet up face to face with the man himself.

"Lawrence!" you exclaim, both happy and surprised to see him so soon. There's no time for you to get another word in as he squeezes you close, almost too tightly. "I'm glad to see you too." A quick giggle escapes as your hands press against his chest, a vain attempt to earn you any more breathing room. After what you just had to go through at the hospital some affection feels somewhat deserved. You let it a while longer but soon begin to notice just how heavy his chest his moving and upon pressing your fingers down you swear that his heart was beating quicker too.
"Um! Hang on, I need to breathe now-" you try not to appear alarmed when you finally force him back. Peering around the room you try to spot if anything is different, to see if somethings wrong and he just doesn't want to tell. It can't be a threat, or else he certainly would not be letting you just stand there. As you think about what the next cause for his behavior your thoughts immediately jump to your grandmother. After the initial thought of that being a possibility settles you would think that he would have told you about what was going on by now, and you try to think of something else while praying he doesn't prove you wrong.

When your eyes land on the padding wrapped around his arm you begin to rationalize that Lawrence is just weak right now. Not that he was like that when you left, but you try not to dwell on it.

"You shouldn't be running around like that," you scold and point over to the couch, "Go sit down. Oh, unless you need to go to sleep I guess..."

Lawrence shakes his head and back up, flopping down a little too hard on the delicate looking antique. When you're sure that the little creak you heard was just nothing you hastily fix your dress and hair, walking over to him with careful and poised steps. "I tried something new," you start to explain while smoothing over the front with your hands. When he nods up you remember that your hair and suddenly you go red upon recognizing that he noticed. "Oh y-yeah, and this is cause I wanted to make sure all the blonde was hidden. I don't know if it really looks all that great though, it was my first time doing it. What do you think?"

Just as soon as you started talking again Lawrence was already feeling around his pockets, searching and coming up with nothing. "What are you looking for?" you ask and he gestures it with his hands. "Oh, you can't find your notebook. Well if you want to tell me where it is I can run and grab it-"

He shakes his head and reaches out for your hand, leading you to the empty spot on the couch. When Lawrence continues holding your hand you start to fidget about, looking away and hoping he doesn't notice how flustered you are. When he flips your palm around and nods at you to look over you do, despite the jittery feeling in your chest. You watch carefully though as he traces his finger over, repeating the same motion over a few times till you catch on to the letter he's making. Once you say it out loud he moves on the next one, silently writing a message out for you.

"I-T-S...N-I-C-E." It takes a few tries, but you manage to read it off correctly. With a nod of confirmation from Lawrence you can't help but smile, glad to be receiving a compliment but also liking this way of communication. "Thanks," you grin. Making sure he has your attention again Lawrence begins writing out another sentence for you.
Sorry for earlier. Where were you?

"Mr. Crockett took me to the hospital to see my mom. I shouldn't have ran off without telling you first, I'm sorry."

Its fine. Overreacted.

"I know it might be slower, but I don't mind talking with you this way." Things feel better right now, even if it's just a little bit. "What did you do while I was gone?" You await for the next message, trying to hold still and not giggle as it begins to tickle this time.

Got checked out-

Lawrence throws a look at you when you start giggling too hard, pulling your hand away from him by accident. "Sorry- Here, try again." This time you focus on remaining in place, watching as he rewrites everything again.

Got checked out. Doing better. Dr said-

"Ooh, are you two reading palms?"

Camilla interrupts him this time, quiet in her approach from behind the couch. Lawrence pulls away from you with a guilty look on his face and you sit as small as possible, fists pressed against your lap. "He just forgot his notepad somewhere, so he was writing stuff out on my hand."

"Ah, I see," Camilla smiles, "Well I am sorry I wasn't out here to greet you. Ace said you were heading back and I was trying to be prepared-"

"Wait, how did he tell you?"

Removing it from her pockets Camilla displays the small plastic device in her hand. "Pager. I meant to be ready by the time you got here, but I'm afraid I became a little ah, a little too busy." Leaning over the couch and looking over at you, she asks, "Would you like to practice shooting again?"

"Right now you mean?" you ask and she nods.

"It is going to get much much windier in a few hours, and it will bring snow. I do not know when we will have such a good time to practice outside again," she explains.

"Oh um..." you start to think about it, noticing that Lawrence is nodding and pointing to himself.

"You want to come too?" Camilla clarifies, frowning a bit. "Fresh air is good and all, but I do not think you should walk out that far." While Lawrence tries to silently argue for the case of him tagging along you start to think about it, something she notices. "Don't think you have to go along, I know you probably had a busy morning already. It is just a suggestion."

Staying inside certainly would be nice, but with a shift of your leg you remember just how much the gun strapped to it still scares you. Going out and shooting with Camilla might help you blow off some steam anyways, but Lawrence still worries you some. You'd like to watch over him a bit longer to make sure he's okay, but that either means staying in here with him or letting him come along. Or maybe you could deal with asking him to stay behind for now...
After a series of semi-unfortunate events and a sickness I will hopefully be less of a piece of shit
Practice makes perfect. The more comfortable we get with handling a gun, the more comfortable we'll be with carrying one.

Cammy's probably concerned Law could pull his stitches tensing and flinching from the recoil. Even if learning would be helpful, it's probably best if he stays in and gives his shoulder as much rest as possible.
No need to apologize for sickness.

We have all the time in the world. Tell Camilla we'll be with her in a few minutes (30 tops), so we can finish up talking to Law.
Gun training is important, but Law must be so lonely on his own. He neeeeeeeds us.
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Hey Sue, as a thank you for always coming back to tell Delilah's story, I made you a little something something.
Please keep up the great work.
"Sure, yeah. But can I have a minute?" you ask.

"Of course," Camilla nods, "I need a few minutes myself. If you want to meet me back in here in a few minutes, that would be good. And make sure you put a coat on, I don't want you getting sick."

"Yes ma'am."

She gives you a sweet smile. "You're so polite," she says before looking over at Lawrence, "Please don't forget what I told you earlier." He nods and before you even get the chance to be nosy Camilla begins talking to you again. "Do you know where your Colt is?"

You nod and lift up the very bottom of the dress. "I have it with me already..." you mumble, noticing Lawrence's surprised reaction upon seeing it. Camilla on the other hand looks extremely pleased, a short round of applause coming from her.

"Oh good, I'm glad you were able to put it on by yourself." She looks ready to ask a thousand questions about it but she shakes off the urge to, remembering that she already has a task at hand. "The more I stand here talking the more time I waste. I will be right back, and then we shall go out and practice!" There's a new bounce in Camilla's step as she walks off, humming to herself and undoubtedly planning the session very carefully.

Ignoring any signs of a dull throbbing in your head you take a deep breath, rising up from the couch and holding your hand out to Lawrence. "You should take a nap while I'm out there," you explain as you try to help him up. He does all the hard work himself, but you don't let go of his hand as you try to tug him along. "Being out in the cold like that won't be good for you."
He starts to shake his head, protesting and trying to tell you that he would be okay out there. It's the type of answer you were expecting and you're prepared to fight him on it. "It'll be boring for you just to stand out there anyways. Besides, how are we supposed to bring you back here if you pass out?" While talking you begin leading Lawrence towards where you hope his room is, though all the similar features in the halls don't make it easy to remember where everything is yet. "I'll hang out with you for a little bit first, and then we can after I get ba-"

It doesn't matter how stern you try to be with him, when Lawrence comes to a stop you have to come to a stop too. "Aw come on, it won't be that bad," you start to say, but notice that he's gesturing at a door you've already passed. Trying to keep to keep up the appearance of being mature in this you don't try to say anything, instead just walking back to the correct room like you hadn't completely missed it.

"Here, I'll let you open it since it's your room after all," you say with a puffed cheek and a pout. No need to hold his hand anymore, you instead follow behind now as Lawrence lets you inside. The room itself is the exact same as yours, a cold and gray square with the only light coming from those on the walls. The furniture is old like yours and a similar style, but there's some differences here and there that keeps them from being the exact same. The unmade bed and pile of clothes on the floor somehow make it all feel a bit more cozier, even if you feel the desire to clean it up.

"Better not let grandma see that or she'll give you a scolding," you warn, taking a few steps around the room and trying to spot any more differences. Lawrence plops down on the bed, making some attempt to smooth out the blankets despite already sitting on them. You can't help but snicker at the effort and you give up the search, coming over to take a seat next to him once again.

"I'm not trying to ditch you or anything," you start to explain, "Did it scare you when I was showing off the gun? Cause it still scares me."

Lawrence shakes his head and you can see now that he's much better than before. No trouble breathing, no frantic motions, nothing like how he was when you first came back.

"That's good, one of us needs to not be a baby about it." You laugh a little bit, but it's true. It really does scare you still.

You've got only a few short minutes before you need to head out with Camilla. It's private between you two right now too, so you might not mind trying to talk about some important stuff. What happened with your mother at the hospital, things that happened with your mother and Crockett at the hospital, and of course you're starting to become curious about why he was so out of breath earlier or how his check up this morning went. Too many things you want to talk about all at once, but even just hanging out with him is nice.
Saved and greatly appreciated, thank you!
I am 85% sure we'll be talking in circles if we ask what's up with him, so lets talk about the weird shit at the hospital.
Law is basically our confidante so it's onlu fitting we open up to him, and maybe then he'll feel like opening up to us after we get back.
New Thread will be up tomorrow
Pushing thread back one day because work emergency has popped up

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