I Care

"I care," she says. "I do, Simon. But your sister is fine."

Simon scowls.

"What you're suggesting is crazy. If anyone heard you talking that way..." She fades out, leaving it up to Simon to put two and two together and figure out what she means.

"No," he says, regardless. "None of that matters. If River could hear you now, what would she think? You're not even willing to check up on her. That's all I'm asking of you."

"Simon, you're being ridiculous. Leave it be, okay? Think about your medical career."

"Think about my-" He shuts his mouth, and shakes his head in disbelief. If their own mother won't try and save River, then he's on his own. His father has already shown he's unwilling. Before he can get another word of protest in, his mother speaks up again.

"Now, I'm leaving for work. When I get home, I'm going to give you the benefit of the doubt and we'll forget this conversation ever happened."

He stares at her, doesn't respond.

She keeps her eyes on him a moment longer and then turns and leaves. The door shuts behind her with a click that is all too loud.

Simon heads to the kitchen and sits at the table, head in hands. He lifts his head, closes his eyes briefly and opens them again. "Goodbye, mother," he whispers.

Then, he gets to work. He has a sister to rescue.

fin.