April 1st, 2010
Dr. Wallace Cole walked down the hallway of Our Lady of Mercy Mental Hospital. Her file he carried in his arms, trying to make sense of it all. He ran a hand thru his salt and pepper hair, nervous but trying not to show it.
"When was the last time her family visited her?" He asked the nurse, a middle age lady who had been there longer than the head of the hospital himself, who was helping leading him to Her room.
"I remember, it was the 12th of January. This year. Poor thing. Her mother and her got into such a shouting match at each other. Her mother tried to put her on a lot more drugs, but that's when Doctor Dormuret-
"Shouting match? Over what?"
The nurse stopped, whispered quickly "The Father. Apparently her mother had thought that her daughter was the child of her and her husband. However the DNA test came back negative and now the marriage is in shambles."
The nurse quickly made the sign of the cross and begins walking again, her white heels click-click clicking down the hallway.
Dr. Cole shook his head and begin walking again.
As he walked, he began going over mentally what and how he got attached to this case:
Five months. Five months before his son Stephan would graduate from Penn State. Five months and he would retire, to Cape Cod summers, and his five cats. Probably would write a book. His brother was a publisher in Boston. Needed to give him a call.
Then one day, he walks into his office, a file on his desk. He reads it over,
And now, instead of going to Italy with Stephan, he was here. In god knows where middle of nowhere to talk with a teenage girl who probably suffered from daddy issues.
They reached the section of the hospital where a big sign said "UNCUREABLE SECTION. NO ONE BUT STAFF AND DIRECT FAMILY [APRROVED BY DR. DOMURET] ALLOWED."
Dr. Cole squinted, having left his reading glasses in the car, to make out what the sign said.
He made a mental note 'no hope for cure for her'.
The nurse quietly pulled out a card muttered 'be just a second' and disappeared into a separate room.
Cole sat down on a hard mental bench. Visiting hours had started less than an hour ago and no one was here. He sighed and opened up her file again.
July 2009. One night, the Brennan family got into a taxi to go out to dinner while visiting the father's sister in NYC. The only girl, Lauren, gets out of the taxi after hearing the 456 terrorist group on the radio. She disappears for three days, when she calls from a London jail cell, having been arrested during the insuring riots that followed after the 456 gassed the Thames House.
Between August-November she 'ran away' more than six times, disappearing for at least three-four days at a time, the longest was at least 2 weeks. She kept claiming she was helping out an organization or a doctor of something. She refused to name who she was helping, claming if she told she would be 'putting the entire earth in danger.' Her mother sent her to Millwood Hospital first, followed by two other hospitals in the DFW area. Finally her mother sent her to Our Lady of Mercy hospital in early December of 2009. Apparently she had been given a clean bill of health at all the other hospitals, however her mother kept insisting that she was 'mentally unbalance'. However around February 12th-14th her older brother Sam checked her out-
"Her brother Sam died at the age of 16 in 2006."
Dr. Cole looked up.
There the Nurse stood there, looking at him.
"I know what you said, yet this-"
The nurse walked over to Dr. Cole and whispered:
"Do you realize what you've gotten yourself into, Doctor?"
She walked back, and pressed a big red button. That caused the huge metal doors to open as an alarm went off.
Dr. Cole walked up to the Nurse.
"Helen Hill. My name, doctor."
"Yes. Forgive me for not asking earlier. How did her brother die?"
"Liver cancer. Not everyone can afford treatment Doctor. Now, time you meet our special-"
"One more question."
"Why did she end up here?"
Nurse Hill pointed straight ahead. Cole turned.
There stood a 5-foot tall gratin statue of the Virgin Mary. The Virgin Mary stood surrounded by flowers, and several people knelt praying in front of the statue. Cole felt stupid for not noticing it earlier.
"Damn." He said.
Nurse Hill nodded, then motioned for him to follow her.
As they disappear down the hallway, a person wearing a dark hoodie turned ever so slightly, as not to draw attention from the other people deep in prayer, reveling a hazel brown eye.
I'm coming for you Lauren, she thought. Even if it kills me.
With every single step that he took, Cole felt like his heart was slowly moving up his throat, for he could feel it in his throat.
He could hear the screams of electroshock, the 'I'm not insane!' cries, the silent whimpering of the patients.
Nurse Hill did not say anything, she just kept walking.
After what seemed forever, they reached the door called Patient #1692.
Nurse Hill unlocked the door and motioned for him to wait. She walked in and closed the door; the brief sound of The Phantom of the Opera flew out.
After a few seconds, she walked out.
"I heard music. Playing. Isn't music banned-" Cole stuttered out.
"She's special. Family orders."
She began to walk away calling "she's all yours now doctor."
Cole sighed, and opened the door.
The room was bare, saved a bed in the corner. Everything was white. The walls, the carpet, the tiny chair in the corner. Even the bed frame. The only thing was colored in the room (save for Cole) was a poster of the phantom of the opera movie.
There, lying in the bed, was a small girl, her back to him
Hard to believe she's 18.
"Lauren?" Cole asked so gently.
The figure wore a white robe, white pajama pants, and white socks with white slippers.
She did not respond.
"My name is Doctor Wallace Cole. You may call me Doctor-"
"I already know a Doctor. He'll come and get me. He'll save me."
The figure turned quickly. Her messy black hair covered her face. She looked at Cole.
"That's the thing. He refers himself as the doctor. Everybody calls him the doctor. But he has a name. If he didn't have a name, he couldn't be a doctor. It doesn't make sense, does it?"
"Exactly. That's what I thought the first time I met him. But I learned my lesson."
Cole looked at her with doubt. He sat down in the chair. Lauren looked at him seriously.
"You're not one of them. I can tell because you don't have a metal heart checker...thing. Also you wear...colors.," she said, sounding proud of herself.
Cole quietly pointed to the visitors badge on his jacket. Lauren's smile quickly faded.
"Oh. No matter. The doctor would have been proud of me for the first couple of things."
Cole opened her file and quickly went through it. She had been seen by at least 9 other psychologists. All but one of them have written her off as, 'possible bipolar' and diagnosed her with 'undiagnosed depressions well.' Only one, who saw her at least two weeks ago, diagnosed her as ''most definitely suffering from schizoaffective disorder.'
That came straight from the head himself.
"Tell me your story Lauren. I'm here to help you."
Lauren scoffed. "That's what they all say."
"Dead older brothers don't check out younger sisters out of the crazy farm on, let us say, a whim?"
Lauren did not say anything. She just sighed heavily over and over again.
"You wouldn't believe me, even if I told you."
Lauren quickly ran down the streets of New York. She ignored all the horns honking and the yells of "move it, kid!' from the angry drivers behind her.
As she passed Time Square the news played the same image over and over again, of the huge 'cloud' over London.
The rain poured down over her but she didn't care.
She needed to find a safe place. To think over everything that just happened. But no. She had to make that call.
The entire world rested on her shoulder.
God what a load!
And there it was.
A telephone booth. She ran up to it, pushing some unlucky person out of the way. She closed the door behind her and turned to face the phone.
Her heart was pounding. Her palms sweaty.
She looked in her pockets for change.
'Come on, come on, come on." She muttered franticly.
She breathes a silent prayer of relief when she found change. She inserted the change quickly.
She dialed the number. How she knew this number, she didn't know. She relayed solely on the number she had gotten from the flash.
She inserted more change, when she realized it was going to be overseas.
"Please, let it work, please. Please." She begged.
She was dreading the fact that someone was going to pick up, she hated talking on the phone, she also dreaded if someone who was not her required caller answered, how was she going to explain 'oh, yeah. I just was trying to dial someone who I've never met that works for a-
"Hello? Who is this? Hello?"
His songbird voice rang through her ears.
He's just how I thought he would sound like.
She bit her lip and thought 'yes! It's him!'
"Hello? Do you think this is-"?
"Captain Jack! Jack Harkness, is it?" she asked. God I must sound stupid.
".... Who the hell is this, how did you get this number!"
"Please Sir, I mean Jack. Look, I know this sound stupid. I know I must sound like a blubbering idiot for calling you, but-but-"
"Listen, kid. I don't know who you think you are but there is a spaceship hovering over-"
"I know! I saw the news! I-"
"Listen, I would love to-"
"I know crucial information on the 456! I know why they're here! I know! Don't hang up, I had like this vision when I was in the taxicab with my family and I heard them on the radio! God! I know...I know! God, that sounds really stupid."
She heard him sigh.
"Where are you, I need to know your location ASAP."
"I'm in New York. In a little phone booth like two blocks away from Times Square."
"Okay. Stay there. I'll try to get to you as quick as-"
"Jack, before you go... I have to tell you something."
Bad tone, not the bad tone. Oh god that's the worse
She sighed and slowly breathed out.
"I think...I know. Well,"
"There's something you should know, before I tell you all about the 456. I'm...I'm your daughter."
A chill ran up her back, knowing that the truth, that she had just told was out.
She could tell he was dumbfounded, he was about to respond. Lauren closed her eyes, waiting for the news.
Oh god, here it comes-
Your five minutes are up. Please insert 50 cents if you would like to continue your call. Thank you.