rememberingpt2

Rembering the Ones We Love
By: Dawn Powell

Part 2

As the door closed behind her the tears she'd been to keep at bay broke loose and tumbled down her face. Without realizing it she had slid to the floor and brought her knees to her head. A hand lightly touched her shoulder as to not to spook her. "Gosalyn?"

Gosalyn looked up. "I don't know what to do, Launchpad. I'm so scared." Launchpad knelt down next to her and not saying anything, wrapped his arms around her for comfort.

A slight cough from behind them broke their silence. "Sir?" It was a young nurse. He gave her a quizzical glance, before turning back to Gosalyn. He could see that she had cried herself to sleep. "Umm...Sir? You'll have to move out of the hall. I you'd like to you can go to the waiting room down the hall."

Without looking up at the nurse Launchpad shook his head. "No, thanks. We'll get out of your way." He gave Gosalyn a gentle nudge. "Wake up, Gos. We have to move."

She stirred slightly in her slumber before mumbling, "Just five more minutes, Dad."

Launchpad's lips formed a crooked grin. "Sorry, kiddo, but I can't give you five more minutes and I'm not your dad." He waited for her to finish waking up. Finally her eyelids slid open and Gosalyn's green eyes looked up at him.

She quickly sat up and wiped the dry tears from her cheeks. "Sorry, Launchpad, I must have fallen asleep. What's going on?"

"We're being moved." He waved a hand at the nurse next to them. "I thought we'd go on home and grab some lunch. Or we can just stop at the Hamburger Hippo." His stomach growled and he let out a laugh. Gosalyn could only manage a smile.

"Can't I just stay here? I could get something from the cafeteria." She didn't feel like she could bear the thought of leaving her dad here alone, even for a short time.

Launchpad didn't think it best to leave her there. He stood up and tugged on her sleeve. "Come on. It's just for a little while. We'll be back before he wakes up."

Gosalyn looked up and saw the hopeful expression on his face. She sighed. "OK. But we can't be gone too long. I don't want him to wake up alone."

"All right. We'll go get something to eat and then we'll come back here. I think we should stop by the house first to get some clean clothes for DW and the car. I really don't want to be riding around in a taxi all day. It could get expensive." With more enthusiasm then he thought was possible for her she jumped up from the floor and grabbed his arm, dragging him down the hall.


A little over an hour later the pair found themselves standing back in front of Drakey's door. Gosalyn shifted the bag she was carrying from one hand to the other. "What all did you pack in here, Launchpad?"

Launchpad's hand paused on the door handle where he was about to give it a turn. "Just a set of spare clothes and some other stuff I thought he might need or want. Why?"

She let out a soft grunt. "Because this thing weighs a ton." Another grunt escaped as she dropped the bag on the floor. Launchpad's shoulders shook as he tried to keep in his laughter, but in the end the chuckles won.

Once his laughter died, he easily reached down and easily picked up the discarded bag. Gosalyn could just mutter, "Show off." under her breath. Launchpad heard her anyway and his grin became a full smile. He was glad to see that Gosalyn was starting to get some of her spirit back and with his free hand he reached over and pushed open the door, then made a motion indicating that she was to go first.

As the pair walked through the door they were met with the sight of an awake Drakey starring intently at the television. Gosalyn being the curious being she was wandered over to stand next to him and quietly asked, "Whacha watching?"

Drakey let out a yelp and dropped the TV remote on the floor. He didn't even realize anyone was in the room with him. "Don't do that!" Then he turned to see who was in the room and instantly his face brightened up. "Gosalyn, you came back! I wasn't sure if you were going to."

Gosalyn reached down and picked up the discarded device. "Of course I came back. There was no way I was going to leave you to suffer. You would have died from boredom." She heard a slight cough from behind her. "Oh, Launchpad and I stopped by the house and grabbed you some stuff. I'm not sure what all he got." Launchpad came forward and placed the bag on the bed.

Drakey could just stare at the man in front of him. The guy was huge. Well, compared to Gosalyn he was. "You're my sidekick?" He finally managed to squeak out.

Launchpad became very uncomfortable. "Yeah. Uh... Gos. If you don't mind I think I'm going to head home and get some sleep. Are you going to be all right here?" He felt the overwhelming need to get out of the room.

Gosalyn turned her eyes over to her companion and for the first time noticed just how tired he looked. Just like her dad. "Sure, I will. Go on home and get some sleep. I'm sure the doctor won't mind if I stay with Drakey here." Launchpad nodded once and made a beeline for the door.

Once he was gone Gosalyn turned back to the person she was there to keep company. "He's not always like that, you know. I guess the last few hours have really gotten to him." Then she changed course on the conversation. "So what do you want to do first, Drakey?"

"Oh. Um... Could I see what you guys brought for me? I'd like to get out of this gown if possible."

Gosalyn smiled. "Actually, I don't know what we brought. Launchpad picked out everything." She opened the bag and started rummaging through it. Right on top was his spare clothes and underneath it was some other purple material. It looked like some type of shirt. Pulling it out she held it up for inspection. She found out that it was a shirt, only longer. "Do you know what this is?"

Drakey reached out and carefully touched the soft material. *"Whew. Well maybe I'll just skip breakfast this once." The costumed duck muttered to himself as he made his way over to a screened off area "So I make a mistake once in awhile." Once he was safely behind it he went through the process of changing into his night or day wear in his case.* The rest of the memory escaped from his grasp and he gave a silent sigh of loss.

Gosalyn heard Drakey's sigh and became concerned. "What is it? Is something wrong?"

"Huh? Oh, no. Nothing's wrong. I was just remembering a time when I wore this. I was changing from my costume into it." He took the shirt from her and ran his hand over it.

Gosalyn's eyes grew wide. "Keen gear! What else do you remember?" With every passing second she could feel her heart beat harder in anticipation of the answer. She had to keep reminding herself that it wasn't good to get her hopes up too high because they could easily be dashed.

Drakey's brow wrinkled as he tried to dredge up some memory of his adult life or even his adolescence, but it was no use, they were just beyond his reach and mocking him. "I'm sorry, Gosalyn. I can't remember anything else. It's just fog. I don't even know all that much about that one memory."

Gosalyn jumped up on the bed next to Drakey. "Maybe I can help."

He shrugged. What harm could it do? "All right." So he told her all the details of his memory. "Do you know what it means?"

"I can't tell you exactly what it means, but I can tell you where that took place."

"Where?"

"At the tower."

"The tower?" What the heck was she talking about? Why would he be in a tower? He wasn't that fond of heights.

"The Bridge Tower. That's your hideout. And you used to live there."

"Cool! I have a hideout. Can we go there?"

Gosalyn laughed. "Not tonight we won't. You're stuck here, remember?"

Drakey looked sheepish. "Oh. I forgot."

"Don't worry about it. We'll go tomorrow after we spring you from this place."

His face brightened at the promise. "OK. So, what do we do now?"

Gosalyn shrugged. "I haven't the slightest clue. Maybe there's something in the bag that could be useful." She started going through the bag some more. After some digging she pulled out a box of checkers. "Ha! We're in luck. Launchpad packed some checkers. You do know how to play, don't you?"

Drakey snickered. "Of course I do. My dad taught me when I was five."

Gosalyn got a wicked smile on her face. At the orphanage no one wanted to play with her. They always said she was too competitive. It was true of course. Now she had the perfect victim for her competitive streak. Casually she said, "Good. Why don't you go change and I'll get this set up."

He gave a happy little nod and took the nightshirt into the bathroom. If he had been really listening he would have heard a soft voice say, "Sucker," behind him.


A few minutes later Drakey reemerged from the bathroom, now wearing the nightshirt. "Ah. That feels much better. So are we ready to play?" He asked as he carefully plopped down on the opposite side of the board.

Gosalyn rubbed her hands together. "I am. Are you ready to lose?"

Drakey returned her look with one of his own and asked. "Are you?" She smirked and made her move.

The first game went on like that until Gosalyn finally called out, "Ha! I win. See I told you I would win."

"Yeah, yeah. How about a rematch?"

"You're on." The two rushed to get their pieces back on the board. But instead of making a move though, Gosalyn leaned and made a sweeping motion with her hand. "You can go first."

"Feeling sorry for me?"

"Nope. Just thought I'd let you go first this time."

"Gee thanks."

"No problem." Drakey looked down at the board and mentally went over possible first moves. Finally he decided to start with one of the border pieces. "Your turn."

Gosalyn glanced down at her own pieces and let out a sigh. "Drakey? Can I ask you something?" She moved her own piece.

"Sure." Another piece was moved.

"What...What was your family like?"

The question caught Drakey off guard and he jerked back, gasping in pain as his ribs rubbed together. "Owe." He clutched his chest trying to stop the pain that blossomed from the movement."

Momentarily forgetting his amnesia Gosalyn called out, "Dad! Are you all right?" She crawled over the board and spilt the peices all over bed. Placing a gentle hand on his uninjured arm she eased him back onto the pillows. "It's ok, Dad. Relax." She moved her hand up to his head and stroked it, trying to get him to relax some. "I'll go get the nurse." She turned to leave but was stopped by a hand on her wrist.

Eyes still closed, Drakey begged her not to go. "It's all right, Gos. I'll be fine."

Gosalyn tried to plead with him. "But you're hurting. They could give you something for the pain."

"I'll be fine. I just need to get relaxed." His instinct was telling him that he didn't need the drugs, he could do this on his own. Allowing his body to take control, Drakey closed his eyes and started taking as deep of breathes as his ribs would allow. Silently he willed the pain away. Breath in comfort, breath out pain. He did this over and over until finally the pain went away.

Meanwhile, Gosalyn stayed were she was, watching him closely. When she saw the lines leave his brow she gently placed a hand on his shoulder for comfort and to remind him that she was still there. Gosalyn had seen him do this before, but with him having amnesia and no memory of his life as Darkwing she didn't know that he could still do that. Finally she decided it was time to bring him back. "Drakey? Come on, open your eyes for me." She waited.

Drakey became aware that someone was calling to him and he opened his eyes to see a pair of green ones watching him intently. Letting out one last breath he smiled at them. "I'm OK now, Gosalyn. The pain's almost gone."

Gosalyn wryly returned the smile. "How'd you know to do that?"

Drakey's expression turned to confusion. "Do what?"

"Get yourself to relax like that?"

"I...I don't know. Something inside me told me to do that." He touched his chest in emphasis.

Gosalyn nodded, knowingly. "Some of your training must have kicked without you realizing it."

"My training?"

Since she saw that he was going to be fine, Gosalyn scooted back on the bed and brought her knees up to her chest. "Yeah. I don't know the full details, but I think it has to do with your Quack Fu training you've had. You're a master of it."

"I am?" Gosalyn nodded and Drakey got a far off look in his eyes. "Wow. I didn't think I would ever get that far."

It was Gosalyn's turn to be confused. "What do you mean?"

He blinked and his eyes came into focus. "Well, all I remember is that I just started taking lessons. My dad thought it would be good for my coordination. That and after I met you I thought it would be fun."

"You must have been very close to your dad."

"Mmm hmm. I was. He's a great guy."

"Can you tell me about him?"

"Where should I start?"

Gosalyn smiled. "How about at the beginning?"

Drakey returned her smile with a grin on his own. "I take it I've never told you about my life."

Gosalyn shook her head. "You're not one to talk about yourself much. I don't really know all that much about you."

Drakey's face dropped. He even though he couldn't remember his life with this little girl, he didn't think that he could deny her anything. "OK. I'll try to tell you all I can."

"Great!"

Drakey's face lit back up at her returned enthusiasm. Clearing his throat he started out with the story of his life. He figured she already knew what his birthday was so he skipped that part. "My parents names are Diane and Earl Mallard. I also have an older brother named Bill. I grew up here in St. Canard and I take it I've lived here my whole life.

"Anyway, about my parents. My dad's a cop. He was one of the best that I know of. It's my dream to grow up to be just like him. He's the bravest man I know." He saw Gosalyn's eyebrows shoot up. "What?"

She tried to hide her surprise, but it was a lost cause. "Of all the things that I imagined your dad to be like, a cop was at the bottom of the list."

"Why?"

"Well, let's just say you're not exactly friends with any of the cops here."

"Oh."

Gosalyn felt sorry for her dad right then. She never imagined how hard it could be to have the man she admired most be against him. "Can you tell me more?"

"That's pretty much it about my dad. At least as much as I can remember about him. I do know this, he was or is very loyal to the force and his family. My mom's just like him, a very kind person. But boy does she have a temper. She doesn't work, so she spends most of her time taking care of Bill and I. When ever we need her she's right there with a plate of cookies. Just like those moms you see on television."

"Wow. That must have been great growing up with both parents like that. I never knew my family." Gosalyn's face got a wistful look on it before she sent it away with a shake to her head.

Drakey remembered her saying that her parents were killed when she was little. "I...I'm sorry."

"For what?"

"That you didn't know your family."

She waved his concerns away. It's all right. I have a new one." She decided it was time to get back to the original topic. "So tell me about your brother."

"What is there to say about my big brother? He's everything I'm not; popular, athletic, good looking. But the weird part is that he never rubbed it in. At least not that often. And that was only when we would fight. Mom pretty much prevented that from happening, though." Drakey let out a slight chuckle. "He's my best friend. One of my only friends, actually." He looked down at his lap, trying to bring up more memories of his life. Every time he tried to push past the wall of mist in his head all he got was resistance. Soon he tired of trying and decided to give it a rest.

"So when do you think they serve dinner around here?" He asked, breaking the silence between them.

Gosalyn grinned and looked at the clock. "It should be anytime now. But I wouldn't look forward to it if I were you."

Before he could ask her why, the door opened and in came a nurse carrying a covered tray. "Dinnertime, Mr. Darkwing." She set the tray down on the table and hurried out of the room, closing the door behind her.

Gosalyn made a move for the tray. "Let's see what gourmet meal the chefs in the kitchen came up for you." She lifted up the cover and instantly her face got a disgusted look on it. "Ew! Brusselsprouts! What are they trying to do kill ya?"

Drakey laughed and poked at the meat that laid limp on the tray. "If those don't do it, I think this meat will. I can almost swear that it's moving."

Gosalyn lowered her head to be level with the food and squinted. "I think you're right." She straightened back up. "Why don't I go find us some real food. I thought I saw a vending machine down the hall. I'll run down and get some and be back in a few minutes."

"OK. But what are we going to do with this stuff?"

Gosalyn was an old pro at this type of thing. "I don't think any of it will go down the toilet, so our only choice is to throw it away. Wrap it up and stick in the trash." She paused for a moment. "Better yet, you wrap it up and I'll take it with me. I can throw it away in one of those big trash cans in the hall." It sounded good to Drakey so he did what she said to. After he was done she took the bundle and left the room.


A few minutes later she returned, her arms full of treasures from the food machines. "Chow's on, Drakey." She dumped the stuff of the bed.

Drakey reached over and grabbed a bag of chips. "Ooh barbecue. My favorite." Gosalyn grabbed her own bag of chips and a Koo-Koo soda. "So what do want to do next?"

"Munch...Munch... Did you want to see what's on TV?"

"Sure." She snatched up the remote control and started flipping through the channels. "Here we go. The Wacky Willie Show. I love this show."

Drakey was more than content with Gosalyn taking control. For the last few minutes his arm had been throbbing and he was trying to make it go away like he did last time, but it wasn't working. He let out a small moan.

"What's wrong?"

"My arm's starting to hurt."

"Did you try that relaxation thing you did earlier?" Drakey nodded. "And it didn't work?" This time he shook his head. Gosalyn thought for a moment. "I'll be right back." She hopped off the bed and went to the door.

"Where are you going?"

"To see if I can get you something to help for the pain." She stepped through the door, letting it close behind her.


When she did come back she had a doctor with her. "Hello, Mr. Darkwing. What seems to be the problem?"

Drakey realized that this doctor didn't know who he was so he cleared his throat and tried to sound like an adult. "My arm's throbbing. Can I get something for the pain?"

The doctor gave him a smile before pulling out a little cup from behind her. "I just happen to have something here that could do the trick."

Drakey took the cup from her and looked at the contents. It was just two small white pills. "What are these?"

"Painkillers. Now be a good boy and take them."

Gosalyn snickered behind her. "Yeah, Darkwing. By a good boy and take your pills." Drakey glared at her and tipped the cup over his hand, spilling the pills into the palm of his hand. Taking a deep breath he cocked his head back and shoved the pills into his mouth. Gosalyn handed him his drink and he gratefully accepted it with a nod of thanks.

"Now those pills will help you with the pain, but they will make you drowsy." With a quick glance at Gosalyn, she continued. "But I've heard that you haven't gotten much sleep lately so it will help you in the end."

Gosalyn returned the glance and said, "Thanks, Doctor." The doctor nodded once and left. Gosalyn turned back to Drakey in time to see him stifle a yawn. "Those must be fast acting. Come on, let's get you comfy." She started fluffing his pillows and when she was done she told him to lay back. As soon as his head hit the pillows he was out. Gosalyn smiled down at him and gave him a kiss on the head. "Night, Dad." She then crawled up on the bottom half of the bed and followed him in sleep.


The next morning came much too quickly for Drakey's opinion. As he felt as though someone had taken a bunch of needles and stuck them all over his back. He tried to get up, but his limbs wouldn't seem to corporate. He just kept falling back on the pillows. In his frustration he let out a grunt, waking up Gosalyn.

"Yawn. What's wrong?"

"Oh, I'm sorry, Gosalyn. I didn't mean to wake you, but it seems that I can't get up. My limbs won't work."

Gosalyn sat up and starred at her dad. "Hmmm. Let's see if I can help you." She hopped off of the bed and hurried to his side. "OK. I'm going to grab hold of your arm and your back. Then I'll ease you forward. Think you can handle that?"

"I…I think so."

Gosalyn grabbed his arm and gently placed her hand on his back. "OK. Whenever you're ready."

"Let's get this over with." Gosalyn took that as a ready and she started pulling and pushing at the same time.

Drakey clinched down, trying to keep from whimpering from the pain in his back. Finally they got him sitting up. Drakey had a fine sheet of sweat on his brow from the exertion. "I'm glad that's over with."

"Not quite. We still have to get you dressed." Suddenly there was a knock at the door. "Come in." The door opened and Launchpad poked his head in.

"Hi, Gosalyn, DW." He stayed in the doorway, afraid that he was interrupting something. "Is this a good time?"

Gosalyn paused for a moment, making sure that Drakey was going to be all right. Once she was sure that he wasn't going to fall over, she went over and grabbed Launchpad's arm. "You're right on time. I was wondering how we were going to get Drakey dressed. He's a little stiff this morning, so he's going to need some help."

Launchpad was shocked to see just how helpless DW was. Sure he was used to seeing him hurt, but not to the point of needing someone else's help. "What do you need me to do?"

"Just get him in the bathroom and help him change. That's it."

"Oh, ok. Sure I can do that." How hard could that be?

Gosalyn gave him a megawatt smile and skipped back over to Drakey. "Come here, Launchpad and grab dad's other arm." Launchpad did as he was instructed and together they managed to get Drakey into the bathroom. "You guys stay here and I'll go get your clothes." She hurried out into the main room and was soon back with Drake's everyday clothes. "Here you go, Drakey. I'll be out here if you need anything." She quickly closed the door.

As she was waiting for the guys to finish in the other room Dr. Spaniel stopped by. "Hi, Gosalyn. How's Mr. Mallard doing?"

"Hi, Dr. Spaniel. He's really sore. I had to help him out of bed. And Launchpad is in there helping him get dressed." Just then the door to the bathroom opened and Drakey, now Darkwing, stepped out.

"Hi, Dr. Spaniel."

"Good morning, Mr. Mallard. How are you feeling?"

Drakey grimced as he tried to shuffle across the room. "I'm very sore."

Dr. Spaniel nodded. "That's to be expected since you ran right into a brick wall. You're lucky you didn't break your back." He paused for a moment to gather his thoughts. "Now if it's all right with you, I'd like to take a look for myself. Just to see how you're doing. Then I'll let you get out of here."

Drakey nodded his approval and Dr. Spaniel came up behind him. As gently as he could he lifted Drakey's shirt. He could see that his back was one mass of bruises. Very little of his white feathers could be seen. Spaniel lowered the shirt and backed up a step. "Well, your back now matches your costume. It's going to be tender back there for the next couple of days and you're going to be pretty sore for awhile. I'll write you out a prescription for some painkillers. Nothing as powerful as what you had last night, but they will make you drowsy, so only take them if you're going to stay home. And one more thing, no crimefighting for at least two weeks. I want you to get those ribs healed up. Got it." He gave Drakey a stern look.

Drakey gulped and said. "Yes, sir."

"Good. I'll have your papers signed for your release and I'll send up a wheelchair." He saw that Drakey was going to argue with him and he held up a hand. "I don't want to hear it. It's hospital policy. Now I'll get started on the paperwork. Mr. McQuack and Gosalyn, could I see you out in the hall?"

The two looked at each other before heading out in the hall after Spaniel. "We'll be right back, Drakey." He just stood there with a confused look on his face.

As they got out in the hall Dr. Spaniel turned to look at them. "I take it he hasn't gotten his memory back yet?"

Gosalyn had to answer that one. She was the one that spent the night with him. "No, he hasn't. For a moment though he remembered something. But it wasn't that much."

"What was he doing?"

"He was holding his nightshirt. He said something about knowing where it came from and a time when he wore it."

"That was all?"

"Yeah. Is that something important?"

"It could be. Sometimes when a person has amnesia they can have times where they remember a snipit of their past. This usually happens just before all of it comes back."

"Is there something that we could do to help him along?"

"I don't know exactly how he works, but take him to his hideout if he has one. People usually have one place that they grow attached to. They have a connection to it. They feel safe there."

Gosalyn nodded. "We had the same idea. We were going to take him somewhere like that after we got out of here."

"Good." Spaniel pulled out a small pad of paper and scribbled on it. "Here's his prescription for the painkillers. I'll go have it filled and bring it down to him with a wheelchair. Will there be someone home at all times with him?"

Lauchpad spoke up for the first time. "I'll be home."

"OK. Um...Well, I guess that's about it. Just have him take it easy for the next couple of days. If you have a problem, just come in and someone will help you."

The pair in front of him looked grateful. "Thanks, Doc." Launchpad reached out his hand and they shook on it.

"I'll be back here in a few minutes with your stuff." They nodded and Dr. Spaniel turned to go back down the hall, while they went back into the room.

They found Drakey standing where they left him. Gosalyn gave him a concerned look. "You all right, Drakey?"

"Hm? Yeah, I'm fine. It just hurts to move."

"Well, we'll be out of here in a little bit."

While they waited, Gosalyn went around the room and made sure they had all of their things. She was just putting the last checker back in it's box when Dr. Spaniel came back.

"Here you go Mr. Mallard. You're all signed out, so all you have to do is take these-" He handed him a bag that contained his pills, "-and go on home."

"Thanks, Doctor." Spaniel just gave them all a reassuring smile and left.


Once they got Drakey settled in the chair Launchpad grabbed hold of the handles and started pushing him down the hall, into the elevator. While Gosalyn carried the bag. At the bottom, Launchpad put the wheelchair break on. "I'll go get the car."

"OK"

When Launchpad got there with the car they gathered Drakey up and gently placed him in the front seat. Gosalyn jumped into the back and Launchpad took control of the wheel.


Traffic was light that morning so getting to 537 Avian Way only took a few minutes. Launchpad was thankful for that small favor. He hoped that once they got home everything would go back to the way it was, but inside he knew it wasn't going to happen.

Finally, they arrived at their destination. "Here we are, home sweet home." Gosalyn said as she and Launchpad helped Drakey out of the car and into the house.

As they entered the house Drakey saw that the house was kept very neat and tidy. Very much the same as his old house. He wanted to see the rest of the house, but something kept pulling him towards the front room. Carefully, he untangled himself from his escorts and shuffled into the room.

Along one of the walls he saw what was pulling him. A pair of twin blue chairs sat patiently, waiting for someone to come and sit on them. Drakey decided to comply with their wishes. He winced as his bruised and battered body eased itself into the seat. That's where Gosalyn and Launchpad found him a few moments later.

Gosalyn grinned at him as she saw how easily he took to the chair. "I see you found them."

Drakey became confused. 'Found them? How hard could it be to see two blue chairs in here?' "Huh?"

"The chairs. You found the chairs."

"Yeah. So?"

"These aren't ordinary chairs. Remember what I told you about the tower?"

"Yeah."

"These are one of the ways you and Launchpad get there."

"How do we do that?"

Gosalyn grabbed Launchpad's arm and dragged him onto one of the chairs. "You'll see. Hit it Launchpad."

Instead of the whirl of the chairs there was silence. "Come on, Launchpad. Hit the button."

Quietly, Launchpad bent his head down so he could whisper in Gosalyn's ear. "Are you sure? We could go the other way."

She shook her head. "No, this is the easiest way. We don't have the Ratcatcher, remember?"

Launchpad sighed in defeat and hit Basil's head. Soon the room was again empty.


The chairs came to a stop in a big room that Drakey didn't recognize. Releasing a breath he hadn't realized he had been holding, he started looking around the room they now occupied. In a whisper he asked, "Where are we?"

"This, Drakey." Gosalyn swept her arm around the room, "Is the tower. Otherwise known as your hideout."

Drakey's eyes widened with realization. "All this is mine?"

"Yup."

As if moving in slow motion, Drakey got up from his chair and walked around the large room. Gosalyn and Launchpad opted to stay where they were. They thought it best to let Drakey wonder the place on his own.

As he moved through the room, he would pick up items and study them. It was as if he knew exactly what they were. Even the ones that S.H.U.S.H. had just delivered before the accident.

At last he came to a stop in front of the window facing the city. He was stunned at the beauty of the sight before him. He could see everything from up here. Drakey didn't even turn as he felt a presence come to stand next to him. He knew who it was. "It's so beautiful."

"That it is. This is your favorite place. You come here when your having a problem with a case or just need some time to think."

Drakey closed his eyes and a picture came to mind. *He was sitting out on the ledge with a coffee mug and a typewriter. And he was having trouble concentrating on the comic book. Everyone at home had wanted to change it to their liking. He just wanted to tell the true story of his heroics.* He could feel the barrier in his mind break as he relived that memory. Suddenly he could remember everything.

Gosalyn started to become worried. Drakey had been standing there awfully quiet for the last few minutes. She had just placed her hand on his arm when he opened his eyes and smiled down at her.

"I know that's what I do up here. But you didn't know that I also come up here to think about how lucky I am to have you in my life."

Gosalyn's breath caught in her throat. Could it be? "Dad?"

Drake cupped Gosalyn's chin in his own large hand and tipped her head back so he could look at her bright green eyes. "Yeah, Gosalyn. I'm back." Tears streamed from her eyes and he hugged her. "It's all right. I'm here. I'm not going anywhere."

Launchpad could see that this was a father/daughter moment and he sat back down on the chair. He was about to press Basil's head when he was stopped by Drake's voice. "Hold it right there, Mister. Where do you think you're going?"

"Oh, uh. I thought that you and Gosalyn would rather be alone."

"Nonsense. You're apart of this family too. Now get over here."

Launchpad smiled and walked over to the pair by the window. It was good to have his friend back.

They spent the rest of the afternoon together in the tower.



The End

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