A/N: 400 words. Written 7/12/09 (prior to episode 8, "House of Mirrors").


"Knowledge is soon changed, then lost in the mist, an echo half-heard." – Unknown

An Echo Half-Heard

He was getting on his bike, leaving work for the night, when his cell phone rang. He answered it automatically, bike leaning against its kickstand as he sat. He was barely phased by the lack of a greeting from the other end of the phone; the silence was its own greeting by now, one he'd know anywhere. "Becky?" he said. And of course it was.

"Becky, how are you doing?" he asked, not expecting an answer but needing to ask the question, more for himself than for her.

He heard her breathing on the other end of the line. Alive, then, at least, he thought. That was something, and he'd take good news, or any news at all, about his twin where he could get it.

"Where are you, Becky?" He paused, for the sake of pretending to himself that this was a dialogue. "I'd like to see you. I miss you."

Despite himself, he almost expected to hear a response, but of course there was none. Not even any recognizable sounds this time apart from his sister's breathing and cars passing somewhere near her. Cars that could be anywhere.

His sister, Becky, who could be anywhere.

He sighed. Four long years, and nothing but the quiet breathing on the other end of the phone that let him know she was still out there somewhere. Nothing else but the frustration that brought.

"Love you," he said.

The breathing had stopped now. She was gone.

He hung up the phone and closed his eyes, feeling frustrated and angry and overwhelmed and helpless.

At least her calls served a purpose, one he hung on to whenever he didn't have that flimsy technical connection with his sister herself to cling to.

Her calls meant she was still alive.

And they always reminded him to take his pills.

The antipsychotics hadn't kept Becky's schizophrenia from temporarily getting the better of her; they could hardly be expected to, when she'd long since stopped taking them. But he hoped his could keep him in check. If at least one of them had the presence of mind to keep looking, then they'd find each other, of that he was certain.

The day Becky's call was a hallucination would be the day they'd both be lost.

So he would never let that happen. He would find her.

If not tonight, then maybe tomorrow.

Tonight, he'd take his pills.