Could You Repeat That For Daddy?



Scene Title Could You Repeat That For Daddy?
Synopsis A simple phone call turns a potentially awesome day into something not cool. Not cool at all.
Date October 07, 2011

Cooper's Apartment

It was a quiet morning in the residence of the not-at-all famous, Homeland Security Agent, Thomas Cooper.

It was very quiet.

“Wheekwheekwheek…wheeeeeeek… whek.”

But not too quiet.

The soft, adorable sound was being produced by a rather large, ginger guinea pig, by the name of Alimony. Al for short. It was content sitting on a couch cushion, with a rather yummy looking carrot, while being a constant source of sound opposite of the softly playing TV. It's mouth worked on the newest bite of its favorite treat, while keeping alert for any danger.

In particular, It didn't like how that blue balloon dog, on the table, watched him eat.

The human next to him, looked like he had just rolled out of bed. He pretty much did. It was his day off! Cooper was still wearing boxers, whatever t-shirt he was wearing yesterday, and socks.

Eat your heart out ladies.

While that little fluff ball enjoyed itself that carrot, the Agent had a big bowl of honey-nut cheerios, half rested on his stomach, as he slouched on the couch; feet propped up on the coffee table.

Both appeared to be watching the latest news on flat panel tv across the room. It was scrolling the latest tragedies.

“I have to agree with you there, Al. New York is really fuck’ed up anymore.” Cooper waves his spoon as he talk, causing his little buddy to stop chewing and look at him. Wheek?

“Oh! I’ve got it,” the Agent started with a confident smirk that pulls at the corner of his mouth, “Maybe I should find some small backwoods town and become sheriff.” The detective’s voice is thoughtful, but only half(?) serious. Glancing at his companion, he grins. “And you! Why… you, little buddy, can be my deputy.” He popped the end of the spoon into his mouth to free a hand; this way he could give Al a little scratch behind his ears.

His efforts are rewarded with a kind of a happy coo-ing from Al.

And so it was in Cooper’s rather sad existence outside of work. He admittedly liked it that way, after two failed marriages. Though keeping Daisy away was proving difficult.

Gee Thanks, Audrey!

This was pretty much what he planned his day off to be. However! Life, the Universe, and Everything had other plans for him. His cell phone started to buzz and dance a little on the coffee table.

It is quickly retrieved. A glance at the picture on the screen tells him it is his little girl, Ellen. He spits out the spoon back into the bowl and murmurs, “Odd. She doesn't normally call during school hours.” He only gives it a little thought, his shoulders give a little shrug, and he answers it. “Hi baby gi—”

He words were cut off as a voice on the other end explodes with sound. The wails of his pre-teen daughter even got the attention of Al who ‘wheek’-ed with alarm.

“Whoa. Whoa whoa whoa…” Cooper fires off in rapid succession, his head shakes as if she could see it. It is the only thing he can think to say in response to the shock that Ellen just delivered to her daddy’s heart. The voice on the other end pauses the flood of wailing and sobbing from the twelve year old. Things about leaving friends and boyfriend… and oh by the way daddy she is evolved. That had little bit had stopped his heart. It was one of those things parents dreaded. Especially, in this day and age.

“Honey? Uh… Ellen, sweetie. Could you…. Could you maybe repeat that last part for daddy? I could have sworn you said evolved?” He was in disbelief, clearly this is one of Audrey’s jokes… maybe?

His face is one of pained concentration, as she confirmed her status. Pale green eyes closing as he tried to hear past all the tears and hiccups of a broken hearted teen.

What she says has him up on his feet, bowl left —and promptly forgotten — on the coffee table next to his latest practice balloon. It is placed roughly enough that some of the milk sloshes over the side, but even that is ignored. His mind was going into dad gear trying to figure out how to help his baby girl. He was Home Sec after all.

The suddenness of the human’s actions set off Al who gives a squeal of protest, but he refuses to leave that carrot. Good thing he doesn't live in the wild.

“How…” Cooper starts and then quickly stops, deciding not bother his daughter with stupid questions. Instead he asks, “Are they— are they forcing you to move?” There is a pause, while he listens, reaching for Al. Sorry buddy, change of plans. “When?” Right now there was only one place he could think that they would send his daughter to. From the reports he had read, Eltingville was no place for a 12 year old girl or her spazzy mom. Yeah… he feels a little faint.

Leaving the guinea pig alone, Cooper instead grabbed the arm of the couch when his world starts to spin. He used it as support as he heavily sat down again. “I— I don’t like this. Let me…” He really doesn't want too, but he says it anyway, “Let me talk to your mom.”

“Love you too, honey.”

It is one of things he doesn't really do. Talking to an Ex will often result in a fight. He hates fighting with the Exes. Except this time it is Cooper that starts it off with a half shouted: “Maggie! What the fuck is going on?!”

As always he regrets raising his voice right away.

“I know. I know. I’m sorry for yelling.” However, his voice is still a little on the high side, which has his guinea pig pitching a little higher at well. He doesn't like yelling.

Cooper leaned back, with a heavy impatient sign, pinched the bridge of his nose and closes his eyes. This was going to be a bad day. “Just give me the rundown on what happened and why they are shipping you all off to Blocks?” His voice sounds just as pained as he looked.

He doesn't ask questions of every detail, just sits there with fingers bracketing his nose; at least, he doesn't stop her until…“She did WHAT?!?” Fingers leave his nose, eyes opening wide in disbelief. He pales and says in a tone of wonderment, “No wonder they were able to label her a 2. She is lucky they didn't slap a 3 on her.”

Sitting up again, his shoulders slump and arms are propped on his knees, one hand scrubs at his face. “No.” His head shakes a little. “Maggie,” he pleads softly. However, it is clear she won't give up, so Cooper resorts to a shouted “NO. It doesn't work that way. I might work for Homeland, but that does not mean I can go in there barking demands or… or wave some magic wand.”

And there she goes yelling at him. Demanding he do something. “Hey, look. I… I gotta go, but… Uh, yeah… don’t hesitate to call… you know…. If…if you need something.” Brows go up as he realizes what he was saying. “I mean… I can’t guarantee anything, but…”

The connection is cut before he can finish, Cooper stares at the phone with lips pressed into a thoughtful line. Bitch is what he is thinking of his unreasonable ex. The picture of his daughter doesn't help, instead offering a fresh wave of anxiety. Her eyes are rolled up in frustration, hand up as if warding him off. It had the word “Call Ended” emblazoned in red across her face, looking ominous and slightly scary.

Shaking himself out of his thoughts, Cooper jumped up again and hurried for the bedroom, turning back after a few steps so that he can scoop up Al. The guinea pig gives a squeak of protest as the carrot is forgotten, and watched forlornly as it was carried away from it.

Cooper wasn't paying attention. His thoughts were on his daughter’s situation. He needed more answers then a weepy kid and her mom could give.

It is a moment where you learn that even your own family isn’t immune to the bad things in life. It is always easier to handle when you can stand apart from what is going on in the world.

It is a whole other thing when you are thrust into it.

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