Characters: Dee, Ryo, Mother, Others.
Setting: Vol. 2, Act 6.
Summary: In the aftermath of the explosion at the orphanage that seriously injured the only mother he’s ever known, Dee is in shock.
Written Using: The dw100 prompt ‘Candle’
Word Count: 1371
Disclaimer: I don’t own FAKE, or the characters. They belong to the wonderful Sanami Matoh.
The chaos that had followed the explosion was gradually settling into some kind of order, though there were still things that probably needed to be done. Dee’s head was in too much of a whirl to work out what they might be, and once again he felt grateful that Ryo was there with him. His partner was so good at organising everything, getting on with things while Dee floundered. He didn’t know what he would have done without Ryo’s steadying presence. His partner was all that was keeping him from falling apart into a million pieces.
Mother was safely in the hospital now, badly injured by the bomb that had been set off in the orphanage but receiving the best possible care. Dee was torn between rage at whomever was responsible, most likely somebody hired by S Corp in an effort to get their hands on the land the orphanage stood on, and desperate worry for the woman who was the closest thing to family he’d ever known. He made a silent vow that if she died, he’d tear the city apart until he found the bomber, then tear him apart, and after that he’d go after S Corp and tear that apart too! Nothing would keep him from taking revenge.
He shook his head, trying to clear it, knowing he shouldn’t be thinking like that; it wasn’t healthy and it wasn’t helping anyone either, least of all Mother. She’d be furious with him if she knew, probably clip him around the ear, never mind that he was over a foot taller than her now… She was scary when she got angry.
He’d wanted to go with Mother to the hospital, but there were the kids to think about. They were just as scared and worried as Dee was, so with the help of Ryo and the young Sister who was Mother’s assistant, they’d arranged for temporary accommodations. Well, Ryo had made most of the arrangements while Sister Angelina had comforted the distraught children and Dee had paced. A lot of use he was. Still, they’d done all they could do for now. Sister Angelina had left a few minutes ago with the kids, and what belongings they’d been able to salvage, which hadn’t been much because the building was too unsafe. The orphanage would have to be rebuilt, and everything would need replacing, from furniture, crockery and bedding, to clothes and toys… Where the money would come from was anyone’s guess. Hopefully the insurance would pay for at least some of what had been lost. Maybe a fundraiser… It was too much for Dee to think about right now though. Every time he tried, his head got all jumbled, and his ears were still ringing a bit from the explosion, which wasn’t helping any.
Dee had checked in with the hospital a while back, but Mother had still been in surgery. After making sure someone would call to update him on her condition as soon as possible, he’d hung up and shoved his phone in his pocket, not quite sure what to do next. He was still standing there feeling lost and confused, staring at nothing in particular and not seeing anything anyway, when a strong but gentle hand touched his arm.
“Come on, Dee; there’s nothing else we can do here for the time being, the fire service has everything in hand. You should go home, try to get some rest.”
“Home?” Dee asked numbly. The building still smouldering in front of him had been his home; he’d spent the first eighteen years of his life there, had grown up inside those familiar walls, but it was all gone now.
“Your apartment,” Ryo said gently, reminding Dee that he lived somewhere else now. “I’ll come with you if you like.”
“Yeah, please. I… don’t think I wanna be alone right now.” A thought crossed his mind. “What about the house ape? Don’t you need to get home to him?”
“I called Melinda, my next door neighbour; she said she’ll take care of Bikky tonight. Figured maybe you needed me more than he does right now.”
Dee breathed a heavy sigh of relief. “Good, that’s good. Thank you.” He couldn’t seem to get his feet moving though; after all the pacing he’d done earlier, unable to stand still for more than a few moments, now he had somewhere to go it was like he was rooted to the spot.
Ryo tugged gently on his arm. “Come on, we can get a lift to the hospital in one of the patrol cars, check on Mother then take a cab back to your place.”
“Right.” Dee nodded, then shook his head. “I gotta stop somewhere on the way though. Is that okay?”
“Of course; whatever you need. Where to?”
The Catholic church was only a couple of blocks from what had been Mother Lane’s orphanage. It was as old and rundown as the rest of the neighbourhood, but it was comfortingly familiar to Dee. How many Sunday sermons had he slept through here, sitting with Mother and all the other kids? How many times had Mother got on his case for falling asleep when he should have been paying attention? Walking down the central aisle, acutely aware of the noise his boot heels were making against the worn flagstones, disturbing the peace and serenity, he briefly knelt and crossed himself before turning aside from the altar and taking a taper from the jar. Lighting it from one of the burning candles, he set its flame to the wick of one that was as yet unlit, sending up a silent prayer that Mother would make a full recovery. She had to be okay; everyone who knew her loved and admired her, and she was still so badly needed by the kids she cared for. Dee wasn’t ashamed to admit he still needed her too.
What would the orphans do without her if the worst happened? Who would take them in? What would Dee himself do? He couldn’t imagine a world without Mother Maria Lane in it, and he didn’t want to. She was the steadfast, reliable cornerstone of his life. Practically from his birth she’d shaped the man he’d become, and even now whenever he was unsure of what to do about something, he always knew he could turn to her for advice. She was and would always be his mother.
Dee hadn’t set foot in a church for years, but he hoped the man upstairs wouldn’t hold that against him. He must surely love Mother as much as Dee did; surely he’d watch over her and make certain she got through this. After all, Mother’s faith remained strong even if Dee’s was a bit shaky these days, thanks to the terrible things he saw as a cop. Faith should be unshakable; he’d have to work on that.
Snuffing out the taper, Dee returned it to the jar and feeling almost reluctant to leave the soothing tranquillity, made his way slowly back to the door where Ryo was waiting for him.
“You could’ve come in with me, y’know.”
“I know. I’m not Catholic though; I didn’t want to intrude.”
“Are you religious?” It was a question that had never occurred to Dee until now.
“I guess so, I mean I believe in a higher being… My dad was raised a Presbyterian, my mom leaned more towards Buddhism. Dad wasn’t a regular churchgoer; mostly we just went to services at Christmas and Easter. For what it’s worth though, I said a prayer for Mother too.”
Dee was touched; Ryo had only met Mother a few hours ago, barely knew her. “Thank you. That means a lot.”
“I just hope it helps. I may not know her as well as you do, but I like her a lot; she’s someone I want the chance to get to know better.” He squeezed Dee’s hand. “Come on; our ride’s waiting.”
Dee nodded and followed Ryo back out onto the street, where a black and white waited to drive them to the hospital. Mother’s life was in the hands of the doctors and the almighty now. Dee prayed that He would guide the surgeon’s hands to heal her.