The noon sun had just made it's midway point over the Rose House Orphanage, and the people were just going about their lackadaisical schedule. The Headmaster started on his lesson plans for the next day. The Duchess, Baroness, and Countess were discussing the next offering for the Aristocrat Club. The Beggar was off sewing rags in her little den. The Sloppy and Gluttonous Princes were off "dueling", and little Thomas spent his afternoon doing one of the things he loved the very most: playing with his toy train in the play room.
When he was a few years younger, Thomas had received his train on Christmas Eve due to donations from the townspeople. Once he had unwrapped it, he was never seen without his train being dragged along behind him. At the mess hall, in his bunk while he was sleeping, even in the showers he took it with him! The boy loved his train so much that over time, he began to draw huge train tracks along the walls of the hallways for his train to ride along.
However, while Thomas's little hobby was seen harmless in the eye of the beholder, the others saw it as an unhealthy obsession, especially the adults. Eventually, the Headmaster called in an odd man in a suit carrying a briefcase. He brought with him many weird drawings for Thomas to look at. He sat the boy down at the main office and told him to tell him what he saw in each picture. Every time, there was a different picture and every time, he was met with the same answer:
"It looks like...*gasp* a train!"
After he was done with that, the man asked Thomas what his life was like before coming to the orphanage. Unfortunately, he was met with little to no light being shown onto the truth. The boy only knew that he was "carried out here by a copper" and that the first thing he remembers seeing for the first time was a train station.
Nodding his head, the odd man ruffled Thomas's hair and sent him back to play. Once he was out of sight, the Headmaster came out of the shadows, his cane waggling in the man's direction. He asked "Well? What in the blazes is going on with that boy?"
Straightening his tie, he answered "There's not a lot to work with. I'll agree that the patient is obsessed with trains, but he did tell me about how he came here. Said he came here as a baby and remembers seeing a train station on the way there."
His eyes widening in surprise, then settling into remembrance, the Headmaster remarked "Ah, yes, now I remember. Um, wait here a moment." Wobbling his way back, the older man fumbled through one of the file drawers at the side and pulled out an old newspaper clipping. "This has to do with his birth. Read through this for a bit and tell me if you've got some answers."
Holding it in full view, the man read:
A Miracle and a Tragedy!
Yesterday on May 26th 1924, a woman by the name of Tammy Norton gave birth to a little boy on the Mariner Express heading for the mainland. Unfortunately, she passed away mere minutes after labor. A man who happened to be witnessing the event told us this: "It truly is such a misfortune for a little baby to be left alone in the world. I didn't see anyone who looked like his dad on the train. (sighs) If anything, the orphanage will take him in." And so they did. The Rose Garden Orphanage led by a Mr. Peter Hoffman is mainly populated by young girls aged 3 to 16. However, they have made exceptions for two other little boys and have not faltered into sheltering the newborn. More details will be shown in the next issue.
"They never did continue that story. Didn't even give us an interview! Should've know we'd just be yesterday's new since I found this in the corner of a page." The Headmaster grumbled to himself. Soon after, he looked up and asked "So you think this has got something to do with Thomas?"
Rubbing his temples a bit, the man then stated his conclusion. "It's...It's post-partum trauma. Straight after birth, if the newborn witnesses something life-changing so early, such as the death of his mother and being taken straightaway to the orphanage, then memories of that event leave a mark on that child. They'll stand out from the other children in the form of isolation and obsession, especially if there's something common that associates with the latter effect. Because the patient has an affinity for trains, it can be marked as a side effect."
"Hmm...I see...Is there anyway to cure him?" asked the Headmaster, stroking his chin.
Pacing outside towards the playroom, the man answered "Once he's mature enough to handle the truth, you should tell him about what really happened to get him here. For now, let him live in his little world. Exposing the truth now would lead to depression and possibly insanity."
"Of course...I understand."
Observing the little tyke with disdain and pity, the two adults looked on at a child that would never see the light of the truth. A boy that will remain youthful and obsessed until the day he dies...Such an unlucky boy.
A.N.: ...The first thing I do in a while and it's this? Anyways, this is my first time writing for the Rule of Rose fandom so hi! This is based on what Jennifer says about Thomas in the "Once Upon A Time" chapter, where she says his penchant for trains stems from his birth. Over time, I thought on this bit by bit, until I got this! To be honest, I think it kinda sucks, I mean, it was pretty rushed so I didn't have much to lean on. But I got it out here, so that's something right?...I may write something else for this, you'll just have to wait, 'kay?
Disclaimer: Rule of Rose belongs to ATLUS, but the plot of this oneshot and Tammy Norton belong to me.