Chapter one 'Community service'
It was a perfect day in Jump city, the sun was shining, the crisp autumn leaves were dancing around the ground, and the cool breeze offered a slight chill in the air but not so much as to need more clothing then a light sweatshirt. Yes, it was the perfect day to do…anything. Even visit the local psycho ward.
Okay so maybe that wouldn't be everyone's first choice, but for sixteen year old Garfield Logan it was his charity work for two weeks. This meant he had to learn to like it or just deal with it as long as possible.
Our story begins with Garfield who was trotting happily along the pathway leading up to the entrance of Jump City's local psycho ward. Of course no one ever called it that, the real name for it was the Canyon Recovery Center
"This is so stupid," Mumbled Garfield dragging his feet up to the door. "May parent's just couldn't give me a normal assignment, noooo they had to send me to…this place," He said staring up at the doorway and letting out a long sigh before raising his hand to knock lightly. When he got no response he quickly turned around smiling brightly. "Oh well no one's there!" He said cheerfully slowly tiptoeing away.
"Oh! You must be Garfield!" Yelled an overly happy voice behind him.
"Uh actually I like to be called Gar," He answered cursing under his breath softly. Gar turned to see a pretty African American nurse standing there holding a clipboard and smiling down at him.
She nodded making a mental note of it. "Okay Gar, from what I understand you'll be helping us out for a week?" She asked keeping a smile plastered on her face.
Gar wondered how someone dealing with all kinds of patients that had so many problems could keep smiling like that. "Actually, it's supposed to be two," Said Gar sighing.
"Oh! That's even better we sure could use the help," She said marking something on her clipboard. "Well, come on in and I'll tell you what you'll be doing today, I'm nurse Bee by the way."
"I'm…starting today?" Asked Gar confused. Sure he figured they'd tell him what to do but he didn't think he'd be off on his own with the people here on the first day.
Nurse Bee checked her clipboard again and then smiled back up at him. "Yep, but don't worry you're just going to go around delivering mail, food, and whatever else the patients are trusted to have."
"Okay," Said Gar seeming a bit confused. "I guess I'm not supposed to talk to them, or do anything that would make them offended or-."
"Oh, no you're actually encouraged to talk to them," Said Nurse Bee leading him to the front desk where a pink haired nurse was standing behind the counter. "But you need to learn how to act around them, which is why we only assigned four patients for you to take care of. We feel that maybe they'll have a better chance at getting better if someone of their own age showed them how happy life can be."
Gar looked at her confused. "So…the people-patients-whatever they tried to…kill themselves?"
Nurse Bee looked taken back by this at first then she slowly reached up and pulled down four folders before sighing and turning to him. "Some of them…in one way or another, yes."
"Oh…" Said Gar seeming at loss for words. "Sorry, I didn't think-."
"It's alright hun," Said Nurse Bee handing him the folders. "I have them in order the way you are to visit them, it tells you what they're in for and how you should act around them and what to give them. Just take it nice and slow and stay with them for at least a half an hour, twenty minutes."
Gar opened his mouth about to protest but he wasn't sure what he could say. Sure, it was a bit much and he had no idea how to act around these people but they were kids…just like him right?
"Good luck, and don't worry so much," Said Nurse Bee grinning at him and picking up the phone on the counter dialing a number.
"Okay," Whispered Gar to himself. "You can do this, just be yourself," He took a deep breath and opened folder number one. There was a pretty auburn haired girl's picture in the folder and then another one that almost looked exactly like her but this girl was much skinnier. "Kori Anders," Whispered Gar scanning the paper to tell what room he was supposed to go to. The facts stated that she has one sister, a mother and a father, she was sixteen years old, had been in another center before this somewhere in…well Gar couldn't figure out how to pronounce the name of her country, and she had an eating disorder. "That explains why she's so skinny," Gar said talking to no one but himself.
He finally found the number of the room he was supposed to go to, room three-hundred and six. As he made his way there he noticed this place gave off one of the creepiest vibes he'd felt in awhile. It wasn't like the doctors and nurses tried to make it so creepy, they even had colorful pictures hanging on the walls and tons of sun was flowing through the open sunroof and glass windows. It was just the fact that it was so deathly quiet in every hallway that made Gar cringe. Gar didn't like the quiet, it reminded him of a graveyard, or a deserted wasteland.
"Okay, okay…three-oh-one, three-oh-two, do not think of how you don't know these people and just do the work, three-oh-five, three-oh-six!" He exclaimed happily. Gar softly knocked on the door a little afraid of what he might find.
Suddenly before Gar could even think about what was happening the door was flung open and he was pulled inside the room by a strong hand.
"Dude!" Gar yelled shaking his head and looking around frantically until his eyes fell on the auburn haired girl from the picture he had just been looking at a few moments ago. She was smiling brightly at him, as if he were a new present on Christmas day. "Uh-."
"Hello new friend!" She exclaimed happily. "I am delighted to see you come knocking on my door at this time of the day! I often do not get visitors and I am very happy to meet you. Even though I do not know who you are…please what is your name?"
"Uh Gar," He answered looking at the girl confused. "You're Kori right?" He asked.
Kori nodded. "Yes, I am her; please what are you doing here?" She asked.
"I'm…kinda assigned to you," Answered Gar rubbing the back of his neck nervously. "I mean I'm assigned to three other people too but I think I'm sposed to come here and talk with you and give you stuff," He answered a bit unsure.
"Oh! It will be most enjoyable to have someone visiting everyday! No one ever comes to visit me from my family anymore," She said sighing.
Gar's scared expression softened and he gave the girl a small smile. For a moment he actually didn't think it was going to be that bad, this girl seemed friendly and heck maybe the others were too! "Well, don't worry about them Kori, I'm gonna be visiting you for two weeks so you'll have a guest everyday."
Kori instantly brightened up and she made her way across the room sitting down on her bed. "Please, you may sit if you wish, if I understand correctly you will be here for awhile, yes?" She asked slightly hopefully.
Gar laughed and took a seat in a chair by the desk next to her bed. "A half an hour today…I think I'm just supposed to get to know you guys today."
"Have you been anywhere else yet?" Asked Kori.
"Nope, you're the first. I was actually kind of nervous at first thinking all of the people would hate me," Said Gar smirking at the auburn haired girl and leaning back on his chair. "But I'm just gonna hope they're all as excited to see me as you are…and hopefully they're as nice as you are too."
Kori let out a giggle and pointed to the four files in Gar's hands. "Are those our files?" She asked softly.
Gar nodded. "Yeah, but I haven't exactly looked at any of them yet besides yours. I figured I'd let it be a surprise."
"Oh," Said Kori. "I was just going to offer any information on the others…you may need it, not too many are like me here."
"That sucks," Said Gar laughing nervously. "Well, I wouldn't want to ruin the surprise but I'm sure I could read off their names on the front and you can tell me everything you know about them."
"I would be happy to help you friend!" Kori said clasping her hands together and crossing her legs as she gave him an expectant look.
"Okay…I have a Dick Grayson next, Vic Stone, annnnd Rachel Roth," He read smiling up at Kori who raised one eyebrow at him. "Is it bad?" he asked.
Kori let out a nervous laugh. "Well, Dick is one of my good friends and I believe I have talked to Vic quite a few times, but Rachel is…different," Said Kori.
"In a good or bad way?" Asked Gar confused.
"She does not seem to enjoy talking to other people, she often shuts herself out from everyone," Said Kori sighing, obviously she had tried to be friends with this girl and was declined quite a few times.
Gar groaned. "Great, that'll be fun. Um, what about the other two are they okay?" He asked.
Kori nodded. "Yes, for the most part Dick sometimes has these horrible visions where he is being chased by this man he calls…Slade? I believe that is his name. Vic is usually very nice…usually he can do the intimidating of you…but he is nothing what he seems."
Gar bit the bottom of his lip and looked around her pink wallpapered room covered in various decorations. "You knowwww I kinda just want to stay here," He said laughing.
"Oh I would be most pleased if you would!" Said Kori.
Gar smiled at her. "Yeah, I can tell but I think I'm just supposed to get to know everyone today, so um, I'll come back tomorrow and stay longer, promise!" He chirped standing up.
Kori nodded a bit sadly. "I understand friend Gar, it was nice of you to come and stay as long as you did though, I will thoroughly be looking forward to your visit tomorrow!" Kori exclaimed happily standing up from her spot on the bed and attacking him with a bone-crushing hug.
"I-Ican'tbreathe!" Squealed Gar trying to gasp for air.
Kori gasped and quickly released him. "Oh I am sorry friend I did not mean to cause you any harm!"
"Wh-What was-how are you that strong?" He asked looking at her in awe. She had looked so fragile the whole time Gar didn't understand one bit how she was able to hug someone and almost be able to squeeze their insides out.
Kori laughed. "When I was at home I exercised most often I guess I am fairly strong but I never seem to notice."
"Oh," Said Gar. "Well, be careful with that talent there Kori," He said laughing and heading out into the hallway. "See you tomorrow Kori," He said before sending the girl a smile and walking away.
"Farewell friend Gar I shall see you then!" Gar heard her yelled from halfway down the hallway.
The boy made his way down the hall pulling open Dick's folder and immediately spying the room number four-hundred and ten. While making his way to the stairs Gar looked over his file. Kori was right about the visions, it stated he was haunted by memories of a bad man and was sent to therapy for it three times a week. Dick was seventeen years old, came from a foster home, and his parents had died in a tragic accident when Dick was only five years old. Gar glanced at the picture of the boy in the top left corner, he had spiky back hair and was wearing an expression that clearly stated he didn't want to have his picture taken, the only thing you couldn't see were his eyes that were covered with sunglasses.
"How many bottles of hair gel does this guy use a day?" Asked Gar laughing to himself. He glanced up noticing he was by room four-hundred and eight and quickly made his way down two doors. "Maybe if I just tell him I'm a friend of Kori's we can start off on a good start…she did say she knew him…" Gar mumbled raising his fist to the door and knocking harder then he had before when he had knocked on Kori's door.
He knocked again. "Dude? Is someone in there?" He called.
"Hellooo…fine I won't bother you anymore if you-."
"What?" Came a cold tone from the door. It slid open to reveal the boy from the picture still wearing those sunglasses, Gar didn't know why he was wearing them it really wasn't that bright inside.
"Uh, hi!" He said happily. "I'm Gar I-I'm supposed to be here…charity work kind of. I know you probably don't want me to bother you but I was just talking to Kori Anders and she said-."
"You know Kori?" Asked Dick confused.
Gar nodded. "Yeah, I was just down visiting her on the floor beneath you," He said. "I uh…asked her what you were like she said you were…nice," Gar said laughing nervously.
Dick sighed and opened the door wider. "If you know Kori you can't be that bad, come in."
Gar smirked and he quickly took the opportunity to slide inside the door. "So…you and Kori are you good friends?" Asked Gar.
"She's probably one of the only ones I have…along with Rachel and Vic but they don't talk as much as Kori does. She's just so…"
"Happy?" Asked Gar.
"Exactly," Said Dick. "She's in this horrible place, with all these moody people and yet she's so happy all the time."
Gar raised an eyebrow at him. "Dude wait, did you just say that you're friends with Vic and Rachel?" he asked quickly.
"Vic Stone and Rachel Roth…yes," Said Dick slowly. "Why?"
Gar laughed nervously. "Well I'm supposed to go see them next. You see I signed up to do some Charity work here a few months ago not knowing I was actually going to be assigned to people and not helping in the kitchen or cleaning or stuff like that. Anyway, I'm kind of not sure what to expect…do you think you could maybe tell me some stuff about them."
"Uh…I'm not sure if Rachel would like that, she usually likes to keep to herself. But I can tell you about Vic," He said gesturing to the sofa against the wall.
Gar immediately sat down and gave a nervous laugh. "Okay…I guess. I mean Kori already told me some things on Vic so I was kind of wondering what to expect when I visit Rachel…" he hinted.
Dick sighed. "Like I said, Rachel likes to keep to herself, not much of a people person, she likes to be on her own."
"That's a big help," Said Gar sighing. "Alright, what about Vic?"
Dick rubbed his chin thoughtfully. "He's a nice guy, just don't be to alarmed when you see him."
"Why?" Asked Gar cautiously.
"He had a mishap a few years back, he tried to kill himself afterwards because of his appearance," said Dick sighing. "He's part robot."
Gar looked at the spiky-haired boy confused. His file had stated he was a bit loony at times but this was…unreal. "Are you joking?" He asked.
Dick gave him a look that clearly stated he wasn't kidding.
"Maybe…I shouldn't ask anymore questions," Said Gar his eyes still wide at what he just heard. "So…tell me about yourself before I find out anything else I don't want to know."
"Why should I tell you about myself? I think you know everything you need to know considering you have my file," said Dick grabbing a chair and pulling it over for him to sit on.
Gar looked around nervously, his room was plain much unlike Kori's pink furnished suite. "Uh, not that kind of stuff…I mean like hobbies and-."
"I haven't been able to enjoy anything sense I've been stuck in this place for the last six months," Said Dick a hint of sadness in his voice.
Gar felt horrible, he'd brought something up he obviously shouldn't have. "Well, um, I'm sure when you get out you'll be able to do all kinds of things again right? Are you into sports? You look like someone that would be into sp-."
"I was the football captain twice in a row and played basketball last year, that was before all this happened," Said Dick keeping his voice in a cold yet semi-cheery tone. "What about you?" He asked.
"I played football…not like I was any good, I never got to play much and I play baseball usually. Oh dude we should totally have a football game against each other or something sometime, maybe Kori and that Vic guy would-."
Dick laughed, which startled Gar a bit to hear his laugh for the first time. "They're not going to let us out of here…Gar you said?"
Gar nodded. "Why not?"
"Gar, they don't let anyone out of here unless they're with a chaperone, they're too afraid we'll run away. Don't ask how we even can I'm still trying to figure that out. Anyway what I'm trying to tell you is that there's no use in trying to get me outside, not to mention Kori, Vic and me," Said Dick smirking at Gar as if he was the stupidest man alive.
Gar rolled his eyes and stood up from the couch, he'd had enough of mister cold gloomy Grayson for one day. "We'll see man, we'll see. Sides I think you're just afraid I'll kick your butt in football…and that's why you won't play me."
"Right, because I'm so intimidated by you," Said Dick watching Gar head towards the door. "So are you supposed to be here everyday?" He asked.
Gar turned back to the black haired boy and laughed nervously. "Yeah, but I don't know what I'm supposed to be doing tomorrow I-."
"Alright," Said Dick cutting him off. "I guess that means I'll just have to get used to you."
Gar smiled and let out a more confident laugh this time. "Yeah dude you kinda will," he answered before heading out the door and picking up Vic's file.
Dick wasn't as bad as gar had thought he'd be. In fact he seemed just like any other teenager he'd ever met, he liked sports had friends and Gar was pretty sure he had a small crush on Kori…at least from the way he talked about her Gar knew he liked her more then anyone else at this place.
Gar stopped halfway down the hallway and flipped open the file finding room number two-hundred and sixteen. "Down the stairs then," He mumbled to himself turning around the corner and keeping his focus on the file. Victor stone, age: eighteen, only child, mother, father, here for attempted suicide: electrocution. Gar kept his gaze on the file as he circled round the stairs. He couldn't help but wonder if Dick wasn't making up that Vic was part robot…that would explain how he tried to kill himself.
Gar found the picture of him easily and apparently Dick wasn't loony about everything, this man was indeed half robotic, the left side of his face was covered in metal whereas his right side was African American looking. "Dude," Whispered Gar softly. He was gazing at the picture so intently he didn't notice someone coming down the corridor, so obviously he ran into them.
"Watch where you're going," A cold voice snapped from in front of him.
Gar looked up quickly, snapping the file shut and letting out a squeak. "Oh, uh sorry I didn't think anyone walked in the hallways…I mean I've been here for close to an hour and I haven't seen anyone so I just figured that no one-."
"Assuming things about people isn't a very smart idea," The girl snapped.
Gar looked at her confused, he didn't know why she was lecturing him about this, why didn't she just go back to whoever she was visiting. He couldn't get a good description of her face because her black hoodie's hood was up, its shadow covering her face. The only thing he could see clearly was her eyes that were a vibrant violet color.
"Uh, sorry I was just reading and I didn't see you, my bad," He said giving her a small smile.
She rolled her eyes at him. "Learn to be more careful," She said starting to stand up off the floor and up until that time Gar hadn't even realized the force had sent both of them to the ground.
"Eh heh, yeah I guess I need to-sorry um, my name's Gar," He said quickly standing up and offering her his hand.
She looked up at him and sent him a glare that made him cringe. "My name is none of your business and I can get up without your help thanks," Said the dark girl standing up and adjusting her hood before walking down the hallway without even a goodbye.
"Rude much," Mumbled Gar turning into the hallway on the second floor. "Man, what was her problem; two-oh nine; it's not like I tried to run into her; two-eleven; and at least I tried to be friendly; two-fourteen; unlike her…; aha!" Gar exclaimed looking up at his destination. "Two-sixteen."
He smiled brightly and knocked on the door hoping this would go as well as the last two visits went.
"Who is it?" Asked a deep voice from inside the room.
Gar couldn't help but wonder how tall this guy was in real life, he didn't get to read his whole biography because of running into the girl in the hallway. "Um…welcoming committee?" He asked nervously.
There was a confused sound from inside that sounded like "huh" and then the fumbling sound of a lock. "I've been here for five months and I just get a welcoming committee now?" Asked Vic opening the door and looking down at Gar confused.
Gar tried not to stare, the guy was huge! He had to have been at least six foot three or four…maybe five. "Actually no," Said Gar shaking his head. "But um I'm sposed to be here for two weeks."
Vic looked at the teen confused. "Why?" he asked.
"School community service," Mumbled Gar. "I signed to help out here and they assigned me to four people to help…I'm not sure how I'm supposed to help but-."
Vic sighed. "Do you wanna come in?" he asked.
Gar nodded seeming dumbfounded as he quickly stepped inside the half man half machine's room. "You don't seem surprised I'm here," He stated.
"I'm not, they do this all the time here, they think we're magically going to get better if someone actually comes to visit and show a little sympathy for us. It never works," Said Vic. "Actually, I'm surprised you haven't ran away yet…most of them do after they take one look at me."
Gar knew he meant it as a joke but he also seemed kind of hurt while he said it too. "Nah, I've seen scarier. Like this girl I just ran into in the hallway before I came here…now she creeped me out."
Vic smiled. "You know man I think I could actually get used to you, I guess I won't have to mess with your DNA after all," Said Vic jokingly and gesturing to the lab equipment on the left side of the room.
Gar flinched and let out a nervous chuckle. "Well, that's good to know…"
"Chill man I'm just kidding with you," Said Vic. "I only use that stuff to recharge myself."
Gar wasn't sure what to say so he just kept smiling until his eyes rested on something across the room. "Dude, is that the gamestation360?" He asked in awe staring at the object.
Vic smiled proudly. "Sure is, they actually allow me to have electrical stuff in here…the only thing I'm not allowed to have in here is water," He said rolling his eyes.
"Water?" Asked Gar confused.
"You read my file didn't you?" Asked Vic pointing to the four folders in Gar's hand.
"Oh! Uh, yeah but like I said I ran into that creepy girl and I didn't get to read everything," Gar answered.
Vic nodded. "I get it, well let me explain, I tried to kill myself my electrocuting my circuits, obviously it didn't work. I'm okay now really…they just don't believe me," said Vic.
"Uh…I'm new to this and all so I may be wrong but I didn't think you really liked talking about this stuff," Said Gar nervously.
Vic shrugged. "I never really talked to anyone about it before…no one else ever stayed longer then five minutes in here and you've passed eight now so I get the feeling you're not about to run out screaming yet," He said giving Gar a small smile. "So, how long are you here for?"
"Twenty more minutes I guess…around there. Then I have to go visit someone named Rachel," he said sighing.
Vic gave a light chuckle. "Good luck with that man. But seeing how you're stuck here for twenty more minutes and I know you'd probably just love to hear all about my life, but I don't feel like talking about that right now, what do you say we play some gamestation360?" Asked Vic. "Have you ever played Mega Monkey's 5"
Gar looked up at the metal teen confused. "There's…a fifth one?" He asked shocked.
"Only for the gamestation360," Answered Vic.
Gar's eyes lit up. "Dude, you're totally like my new best friend!" He exclaimed happily.
Vic laughed and slapped Gar's back sending him forward a bit. "Come on."
End chapter one.
Okay…sooo this was just something I had in my mind. You don't have to review but it is appreciated. ((Hehe?)) I got the whole idea from a book called "Cut" ((Title now is self explanatory)) though it's not the same…at all. I just got the idea from it.