Washing Away Sins (Open)

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Washing Away Sins (Open)

Post  Dr. Maxwell Rose on Wed Feb 15, 2012 4:51 pm

Everything was so fucked up. No, it was beyond fucked up. It was so far out that fucked up required a high powered telescope to see it. Max counted his blessings every night that the axe hadn’t come down on his head yet. Had Verne really kept it secret as to what had happened between them? What if those with the power to take him down were lying in wait, wanting his guard to be as low as possible before they struck? As far as he was aware the only one at Highgrove with that ability was Dr. Bjorgen and each time they were in the same room Max could not shake the feeling that he knew something. Don’t be stupid. You’re just working yourself up. He knows nothing. He knew that Dr. Bjorgen studied microexpressions and that his nerves would eventually be his undoing. If those little ticks were noticed time and time again he would become suspicious and then the game would be over. Besides, if he did know you’d probably be dead and buried in the rose garden by now. So breath, you stupid fuck. He had to clear his head, had to stay focused. But it still plagued him day in and out and he couldn’t keep it together.

Deciding that he needed an afternoon to himself, Max cancelled his appointments and thought that spending a day at home would do him some good. He could cook himself a nice dinner, have a beer or two, watch a movie, and put all the thoughts aside until he was better equipped to handle them. However, trying to relax on the couch where he lay dying only weeks ago wasn’t going to happen. He sat there; eyes fixed where the cup holding the poison had sat. He felt like Verne was still in the room waiting for him to choke on his own blood or whatever the end result would have been. He did not dare lie down. What if he never woke up again? What if Verne was lurking in the apartment waiting to finish him off? He knew that attempting to kill him had torn the man up but he could not shake the paranoia that he would try to finish what he’d started. When relaxing at home became useless Max got up, deciding that he needed to work off the unease in another way.

He had yet to visit the pool house but right now seemed like as good a time as any. He could swim a few laps, maybe float for a while and let the water wash away the crawling sensation that did not stop even while he slept. Somewhere in the back of his mind, beyond the part that was worrying that his end was near, he wondered if he’d run into any of his patients at the pool. These thoughts began to grow as they always did, worming their way around all other ideas until he could not stop them. Perhaps some of the boys would be out for a swim as well. It was this type of thinking that had started him on the road he was on but there was no harm in looking. They might even want to swim with him. He wouldn’t mind a little race across the pool and back. A smile passed his lips as the thoughts began to overtake the paranoia and so it was decided. The pool would be where he left his troubles today.

Max changed, layered for the cold, and set out for the pool. Arriving he found it to be empty and while there was some disappointment it was probably for the best. He could use a few laps alone before he had to wear the ‘Dr. Friend’ hat. He removed the outer layers of clothing, tossing them on a nearby chair, and moving around to the deep end. The splash from his dive shattered the stillness of the pool house and Max did not surface until he’d reached the opposite end of the pool. God damn, he felt better already. Shaking the water from his face he drew deep breath, going back into the water and swimming the length of the pool once again, returning to point that he’d started.
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Re: Washing Away Sins (Open)

Post  Laura Richardson on Wed Feb 15, 2012 7:05 pm

Laura had decided today would be a good day to look around some bits of Highgrove she hadn’t seen in a long time. And then, on her way back, she was going to go and chat to some cows and then she could go inside and draw things. She might even get to see Kizzy or Lottie or Faith, or new people she didn’t know yet. She couldn’t decide if she liked knowing new people or not. She was worried about it in case she met any, but it made her chest feel funny so she decided walking would be a better plan. Even if her worrying was still humming along in the background asking what if she fell in a hole or the cows hated her or she got caught and drowned in a freak rain shower that had no reason to be there or froze or something. It was strange when she worried about everything in the world at the same time. She knew in her head that if she fell in a hole she could get up and keep walking, but the rest of her didn’t listen.

After a while of ambling around, chewing her nails and worrying a bit because she was on her own so she could feel worried as long as she didn’t cry, she came across the place she vaguely remembered seeing a swimming pool in and decided she was cold and it would be nice to feel her toes again. She wanted to see the cows more right now because she was feeling all tangled in her chest, but she’d said she’d see them on the way back so that was what she had to do. On the up side swimming pools rarely had trees in them, so she wasn’t that likely to get stuck again.

After a brief argument with the door, which had decided that both pushing and pulling were not options for entry and had presumably had a small lifestyle change and become a human flap before deciding Laura wasn’t about to catch on and letting her in, she realised there was someone else in here. And he was not Kizzy or Lottie or Faith or anyone else she knew, like Maggie or bouncy Beth, so she felt a little bit worried. She probably should have noticed at some point in the door argument, but she’d been too busy remembering how doors were supposed to work.

On the upside maybe this person wouldn’t mind her being here and she could practice drawing water. Or something. She liked the sort of sloshy sounds the swimming pool was making, it sounded friendly. She waved at the man and sat down a little way from the water, wondering how that swimming thing worked. It looked a lot like doing some kind of strange underwater dance. Horizontally. It looked like gravity had forgotten to work.

Then she got that worried feeling about people not liking her, so she somehow ended up doing what she normally did, asking lots of questions and filling up the space with them. She could sit quietly… but when there weren’t a lot of people she always felt like she had to say something. “Hello! It’s warm in here. Do you like swimming? I was going to climb a tree again but I got stuck last time but I met Lottie which was nice. She’s funny, and she didn’t even mind that I almost accidentally dropped my shoe on her head when she was walking.” Laura thought for a second. “Well, not lots. Do you like cows?”

She was sort of aware that this was probably not the best way to meet a person, which was probably why she was gnawing at her nails and talking just a little too fast. You couldn’t walk into a room and see someone and then walk right out again because it was rude. She’d done that when she first got taken away from home and people didn’t like it, they wanted to know why. And she’d never really been able to have a reason other than she still wasn’t used to walking into a room and finding other people already there. At least they’d been more understanding about that than the hiding. They hadn’t liked the hiding at all. “Is having short hair nice? Mine dries very very slowly and then it looks like I’ve slept in a hedge except without the twigs and things and everything gets wet and soggy and I drip on things. What’s your favourite colour?”

Drawing would be good now. Putting her paper on a relatively dry piece of floor, Laura started to draw, trying to avoid the bits between the tiles where it felt different. She was drawing a koala. Koalas got to cling to trees. “Are you ok?” Well, it was a question that was more normal. People had said that it was. Although perhaps it didn’t feel quite as normal when she was trying to chew her nails with one hand, draw with the other and hold up some kind of conversation.
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Re: Washing Away Sins (Open)

Post  Dr. Maxwell Rose on Sun Feb 19, 2012 2:29 pm

Max was unaware that the young girl had entered the pool until his head broke the surface at the deep end of the pool. The air that filled his lungs was greatly welcomed, his hand reaching out to grasp the side of the pool to stay above water. Greens eyes peeked open slowly in an attempt to keep water from getting in them but didn’t matter when his saw her. Those cautious eyes opened quickly, surprise obvious in them. When did she get here? He was confident that he’d seen this girl before but couldn’t remember her name or why she was at Highgrove. She wasn’t on his roster nor had she been in any of the group sessions he hosted. Not that it really mattered. Max was always looking to make friends with the residents. A hint of disappointment lingered in the back of his mind as his Dr. Friend smile. If she’d been a boy this would have been the perfect afternoon. Max had tried with a few female patients years ago, after Verne, but they weren’t the same. But this little girl was very cute and perhaps it was worth another go. It had been years and after the tea incident he would take distraction wherever it came.

Gliding through the water Max moved to the edge closest to where she sat, his arms folding on the ledge. “Hello, I-”He was cut off by the wave of questions that followed the greeting. My, she was a talkative one. His smile grew as she continued to ramble, waiting for her to take a breath before he could answer her questions. He figured more would follow and so getting a word in now would be his only chance. “I do like swimming. It helps me think.” He doubted it would be difficult getting her to open up to him given how she was going on and on. Then again, the more she talked the fewer questions he could ask. Hmm. He would have to look into the girl once their little chat was over. A name would be helpful but so far she hadn’t given him one. “Well, I’m glad you decided to come here instead. We can’t have you getting stuck in trees. You could fall out and get hurt as well.” Max wiped some of the water clinging to his face before tucking his hand back under his arm. “Cows are nice. My favorite animals are horses though. Do you like horses?”…wait.

This girl! This was the girl whom he saw walking toward the stables with the window breaking boy. He hadn’t spoken much with her after intercepting but now he remembered her. Her name was Laura although he was still fuzzy on the details of her file. Oh well. At least he now knew who to read up on. “You shouldn’t bite your nails. They won’t grow and look nice if you do.” If they were in therapy he would have asked her to sit on her hands but this was just a talk. “I had long hair when I was a lot younger and I know what you mean about the hedge. I do like it shorter. My favorite color is green. What’s yours?” If she wanted to play twenty questions they would, but Max would weasel in any questions for her that he could.

“I’m okay. My name is Dr. Rose.” He couldn’t help but picture this girl in his office having a talk, sitting on his prized leather couch. Oh, if that thing could talk. He was probably lucky it could not. Otherwise he would never see the outside of a prison cell. “What’s your name?”
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Re: Washing Away Sins (Open)

Post  Laura Richardson on Mon Feb 20, 2012 12:30 pm

Laura was glad this man didn’t seem to mind her being there or all her questions. She was worried she was bothering him but he seemed like he was ok. Gnawing at a thumbnail she wondered why, if swimming helped you think, they didn’t all do exams in a swimming pool. That could be fun, if you could swim. Maybe they were worried about people drowning in the middle of their maths exam. That would really, really be bad. They’d need lots of underwater paper too. She giggled. “I couldn’t feel my toes outside. I got stuck in the tree before but the lady with the really cool legs helped me get down. I like climbing things. It’s fun, especially if you have lots of different things to climb on, not just the floor.” The floor was boring. It was handy when she fell out of bed, but it was more fun to walk on other things. Somehow other people rarely understood that.

She nodded, still relieved he didn’t think she should go away now. “Horses are nice too, but they want to know a lot of things, sort of. They look like they want to hear everything. Cows are good listeners too and they have milk and they don’t mind if you talk a lot. Do you know why we don’t drink horse’s milk like we drink cow’s milk?” She still wasn’t sure about that. They drank milk from goats too, but it seemed like there was a lot of milk they didn’t drink. But then cows were nice, so maybe they were the ones who didn’t mind.

Examining her nails, she nodded. “There was a lady at the other place who said that. She wanted to put nail polish on to make me stop it but then I didn’t do it right and she touched me trying to fix it and I tried to tell her why I was upset because she might die and I got very worried and then she gave up and went away. I think she thought I just wanted her to go away but I didn’t. The stuff just made my nails taste funny. I don’t think it worked…” She hoped this man wouldn’t think she was weird and strange. She was, really, nobody else was evil but it didn’t make her feel better. She liked to pretend she was like everyone else sometimes, but she had to keep remembering she wasn’t. She couldn’t start crying or anything because that would be very, very bad.

“I think purple’s my favourite colour today. It looks like what the sky would be if it wasn’t blue. Sort of like there’s lots of things behind it.” She wasn’t sure this made sense but there you were. It had sounded ok in her head and not as confusing, but so did a lot of things. “Do you like sweets? Horses like mints but they can’t have lots or they get sick. Why do you feel bad if you eat lots of sweets?” she still hadn’t found an answer to that question. Most of the answers she’d got had been to the effect of ‘because that’s what happens’ but she wasn’t sure why. It was like why things went down. People didn’t know why things went down before they knew about gravity but they sort of knew it because that was what happened when you dropped things.

Laura didn’t feel very happy that this man was a doctor. They were nice people but they just kept telling her she was wrong all the time and said she couldn’t follow all the rules any more which made her nervous because she wanted people to stay alive. She didn’t really notice her nails were back in her mouth as she played with her pencil, thinking. “You have a nice name.” It was a flower, and they were nice even if they were prickly sometimes. “I’m Laura.” She waved, giggling. She probably should have mentioned that before all the questions, but she hadn’t remembered. “Do you think there could be fish in there? What do you think fish think about? Do you think cows like swimming?” She began to giggle again. Swimming with cows would be funny. Could cows swim? She supposed they had to do something if they got flooded, besides die, and swimming would be helpful but most cows didn’t need to swim. “They have nice plants in here. Is it sort of like a greenhouse? Only with more water and that swimming pool smell and people?” There were usually more plants than people in greenhouses.
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