A/N: Not sure how well this came out - I got the idea for this story in the very early stages of waking up this morning. BTW, I apologize for Recruit's new chapter taking so long - I caught the flu last Sunday and am still working on recovering. But it's coming!
Disclaimer: I do not own lfn
Adam walked down the hall, backpack slung over one shoulder. He was running behind again today and now he'd have to find his father. Ever since his car was totaled, he was back to feeling like he was five and completely dependant on his parent. But in truth, it wasn't all that bad.
He found Michael sitting in the kitchen, basked in the glow of the tv he was intensely glued to.
Never once, for as long as Adam could remember, did he ever have to pull his dad out of bed. On the contrary, he didn't know when his father woke up - or if he even ever slept. Even on Christmas morning, it was the elder Samuelle who could be found awake first.
"Come on, Dad - I got to go to school," Adam said, grabbing a pop tart and shoving the corner into his mouth.
Usually Michael already had car keys in hand, jacket on, foot already out the door. Like a well oiled machine, he was always ready for whatever he needed to be. But today, he was still in his old sweats, bags under his eyes.
"There's no school today. Take off your backpack, go back to bed for a while."
"No school? Why not?" His eyes flashed to the calendar. It was Monday, wasn't it? Yes, it was. Why no school?
Instead of answering, his father stared at the tv screen. The channel was locked on the news, which had a tape playing in the back round on a loop. It showed a bombing. Terror. Death. It showed the surroundings of a city, only a little over an hour or two away from here.
"So that wasn't an earthquake we felt earlier today," were Adam's only words. Around three o'clock, he had been shaken from his sleep. Michael had been in the hall, awaiting to be questioned. He said it was just a little tremor of an earthquake, go back to sleep. Yet something had been off. His tone, something in his eyes. Adam hadn't read to much in to it before, but he could see it now.
Michael's ability to speak seemed to have shut off. It often did that, as his son discovered in his early years. Thoughts would get too loud. They'd blind and silence him and the only thing to do was to let them run their course.
So Adam poured himself a glass of orange juice, picked up his bag and headed back to his room. His father didn't like him watching the news and worrying over things they couldn't change.
After an unsuccessful attempt to fall back to sleep, Adam had cleaned his room. Did homework he had saved for first period study hall. Finished a reading assignment. Went through four CDs, blasting music in to his head. But now it was lunchtime and he was hungry.
Back in to the kitchen, he found his father in the same place he left him before. The tv was still plastered with the same news tape as earlier. "Anything new?"
"They can't capture the terrorists. They've just made another threat that they'll bomb again at three o'clock."
Adam's eyes opened a little wider in his surprise. "Are people evacuating?"
Did he have to keep asking all the questions? Wasn't it obvious enough? "Aren't we going to?"
"...And why not?"
Michael closed his eyes, leaning his forehead in to his folded hands that were clenched together. "Because I believe at three PM, there will be no bombs going off." He paused for a moment, breathing deeply. "I have faith."
Faith? In what? For as long as Adam could remember, his father never mentioned God. Or bibles. He didn't go to church. Ever. In fact, when he saw a church, he'd get a funny look on his face. Like he was remembering something. Or perhaps a look a regret?
What Michael had faith in might be unknown, but Adam had always had complete trust in his father's abilities. He always felt safe and cared for in his presence. He never doubted the man in front of him.
And there was no where to go anyway. They had no relatives, and the only friends Adam had lived in this town. What choice did they really have anyway?
No longer feeling so hungry, Adam turned and walked away. A little more mind numbing loud music should do the trick to ease his mind. Unlike his father, he didn't like to live in his thoughts.
Throughout the day, the news reporters remained talking with shaky smiles. Michael talked on the phone - their neighbor was a police officer with deep connections, who was being informed that these recent terrorists had eluded the grasp of FBI and CIA alike. Everyone and anyone was on call to track these bad guys down. No one came back with any clues.
Still, the Samuelles stayed in place. Because Michael had faith. Faith that Adam remained clueless about.
At two thirty, Adam came to sit by his father in front of the tv. A cold sweat appeared on Michael's forehead as the minutes ticked down. He kept whispering something inaudible. Almost like a prayer, but not meant for God's ears. Nor Adam's. For someone else's who wasn't here.
As Adam watched, a flicker of an image in his mind's eye kept bothering him. He knew it was a woman. A woman with a sweet, friendly smile. Light blonde hair. Caring eyes. His memory was being scratched, trying to dig up how he knew this woman that he kept seeing. How she was related to this situation. This situation with bombs and terrorists and his father sitting beside him mumbling to someone else.
Adam watched the seconds tick by and as the minutes brought them closer to three o'clock, Michael once again became enthralled by the television set, his lips moving, no sound emerging.
When the clock hands struck three with no bomb explosions to accompany it's arrival, the newscasters all had faces of relief and joy.
And Michael, who was not known to smile easily, had a grin upon his face from ear to ear. He was joyous, but his son knew that it had nothing to do with the bombing. What did it have to do with?
"Good girl," he whispered tenderly. So softly. "You did it. Good job." His green eyes were not so clear, but were now watering. With a nod, he got up from his chair for the first time since this morning and walked to his room. Adam listened to the lock in the door slide in to place. His father could be so complicated sometimes. There was so much to him that Adam only had faint ghosts of memories of. When he was little, he had known so much of the secrets Michael harbored. But age and time and many therapy lessons had eased those memories out of his mind so now, when he went to recall them, he received nothing but a blur.
Michael had praised a good job to a woman who wasn't here. Adam's mind again flashed to the woman of yesteryears. And slowly, his mind started to grind it's gears to wipe away the blur of time. The face became clearer. The settings behind her face did as well.
Heading to his father's bedroom, he knocked softly on the door. "Hey dad? Who's Nikita?" And how did she just save this city from it's fated ashen state?