Disclaimer: I do not own Gundam Wing.
Warning: Possible graphic triggers for abused PTSD sufferers.
The numbness had returned to his body. He couldn’t feel every bruise, every scratch or the broken ribs in his back chest area. Two of them, to be precise with one cracked. His left arm was in a sling to hold it still and not aggravate the broken bones. His right arm should have been painful as well as his hand gripped tightly onto the ends of his hair right about shoulder length. It was horribly uneven and he knew he should take the kind nurse up on her offer to straighten it, but a fear kept him from wanting scissors near his locks. He suddenly swallowed bile that had crept up at the thought. No, he really couldn’t imagine why they had done such a horrible thing.
Why did he care, though? It was just hair, right?
This time he couldn’t stop himself from retching. He tossed the little bit of soup into the bowl the nurses had left him. His back flew into a fire so great that he gagged and threw up more. Broken ribs and horrible depression were fighting against his mind. He still held his hair back as he spat the remaining acid from his lunch into the bowl and slowly leaned back against his pillows.
He was sitting almost completely straight, still. The doctor said it was to allow him to breathe comfortably; well, as comfortable as one can with broken and cracked ribs. He pushed back the need to cough and really tried to think of better things. The doctor had also said he could leave the hospital in a week if his ribs were healing nicely.
His hand clenched and unclenched his hair again. His purple eyes scanned the very common looking hospital room. The TV was off and on a high triangle stand in the corner of the room. It could have easily been mounted to the wall, but someone had thought instead to use the old stand that probably held one of those vintage box televisions at some point. The large window had a lace curtain and a heavier ugly gray blue colored cloth to block out the sun. His hand left the nape of this neck and fell to his lap. He really wanted that heavy curtain pulled closed so that he could sleep a bit. He also needed the bowl emptied.
Smiling a bit at the silliness he was about to do, he rose his right hand toward the curtain and thought really hard about it closing. Nothing happened. He knew it wouldn’t. He had just read it in the series he had first started reading from the other hospital stay he could remember. Real powers didn’t exist, but it was fun for a moment to pretend.
He gently sighed, his back protesting a bit, and pushed the call button for the nurse.
Sam came running into the room early the next morning. Visiting hours had started less than five minutes before and the twelve year old boy didn’t want to waste any time. His mother walked at a slower pace behind the eager preteen, but still seemed to be in a rush to check on her son’s friend. Daniel didn’t know what to say. The healthy child stopped before reaching the bed. His eyes grew wide as he looked at the form on the hospital bed. “Daniel, what happened?” he whispered.
Daniel lowered his eyes to his hands in his lap. He could clearly see the scars littering his exposed arms around the bandages for the new scrapes. The bruises were sharp contrast against the white healed skin. “I got jumped,” he whispered. He felt ashamed now for not fighting back. He might have even been able to take them all, but he would never know now.
A hand came gently down on his shoulder and brought down all of the emotions he was trying to hold inside. He wept, covering his face with his right hand and leaning back against the pillows to try and stem the pain from his broken ribs.
Once again his despair over his entire being and life crashed against him as he cried out every pain he knew of and every pain he could not know of. Why were others so cruel? Where was his real family? Why was it that he was all alone still even after almost six months of being in the state care system? Why was his hair such a large thing to him that now that it was hacked off he felt empty and horrible inside? What was going on and why couldn’t he remember anything before the day he woke up in St. Francis’ hospital? Why? Why?!
It had taken a full week to recover from the beating he had taken from the other twelve year old boys. Alecia had returned a few times and Daniel refused to look at her. Once again Alecia tried to apologize as they drove towards another foster situation. “Daniel, we try very hard to weed out the bad homes, but there is just a few that slip through the cracks. We need the children in these homes to come to us when a problem becomes evident. Do you understand?”
Daniel didn’t speak or acknowledge her. He felt horrible inside still. His right hand fingered his cross necklace to keep from pulling on the strands of his now straightened hair. A nurse had been kind enough to straighten it out for him and was gentle enough to not take off more than needed. Still it was loose and hung behind his ears just below the base of his skull. He hoped length would return quickly. His purple eyes watched as once again the world passed by the window of the small car. Alecia’s promises and apologies were just excuses to him to know that he probably would be continuing to be brought into bad homes. She was right; there were so few good people out in the world. So many of the good homes were given to the younger children, and he knew that very few people wanted any teenagers or children passed the cute stages of life. He had heard the boys talking from his last home. Even a bigoted family was better than the state ran orphanage.
It was his fourth day with his new family, the Robinson’s. Mom Robinson was kind, short, blond and a wonderful cook. She had always wanted children and doted all over Daniel when he came through the door the first time. Pop Robinson was a smiley man, tall and gangly, and hadn’t raised his voice once since Daniel had met him. He was strict but fair. They had a foster daughter with them when Daniel had arrived, Karri. Karri was a year older than Daniel, quiet, and very much the troubled teen. Where Mom Robinson and Pop Robinson were conservative in their clothing, Karri was downright blatant about her body. She would walk through the house in only a bra and underwear and Mom Robinson would tell her to go back to her room constantly to change into appropriate clothing or to just put clothes on.
Daniel lay on his bed unable to sleep. He battled with himself inside. He knew he had to call Alecia in the morning. The sounds coming from his foster sister’s room were not appropriate for a thirteen year old girl’s room to be having. Mom Robinson had gone out with her other mother friends for cards tonight. Pop Robinson had sent them both to bed two hours ago. Daniel forgot to take his pain killers for his broken arm and was going to get them when he heard Pop Robinson go into Karri’s room.
Daniel fought again with himself as he heard a partial scream come from next door. He should go and just stop what was happening, but he was broken. His body hurt and he knew that even though Pop Robinson wasn’t a big fellow, right now Daniel would be easily beaten. In the morning Daniel would call Alecia, tell her what happened there at this house where it seemed they had the perfect foster parents, and once again Daniel would be shifted to another home.
Why wouldn’t his real family just call and get him back now?