gillian_icon.gif juniper_icon.gif squeaks_icon.gif

Scene Title Forever
Synopsis Gillian invites Squeaks to come to an important appointment.
Date October 13, 2018

The Doyle Memorial Library: Williamsburg

Before she left for the library this morning, Gillian had left a note next to Squeaks' bed, reminding her to eat when she woke up, that there was something in the kitchen waiting for her that needed x amount of time in the microwave, as well as some cash. For one of the many ride sharing agencies. So she's not stuck walking to the Library if she doesn't want to. Or she could pocket the cash and walk. Either one, Gillian probably doesn't mind too much.

The note did say that she wanted to see her at the library at noon.

And she's been there all day. Before noon, she's standing near the front desk, talking to a young woman with short reddish blonde hair who holds a small box of something that smells delicious. Like bread and sugar. There had been a small van parked outside the entrance, too, with Rings of Juniper scrawled on it and a 'sorry we're closed' sign hanging on the side, where it opens up for serving food. The food service van she may have seen around a few times, at many of the Popup markets.

The note, after it was found and read, was tucked away somewhere safe in one of the few odd but tiny stashes of things deemed important enough to be kept. Breakfast was had, and the money eyeballed all while the eating happened, but eventually it was pocketed. It'll be returned later, because it isn't that far to walk to the library. Once food had been accomplished, dishes were cleaned up, and Squeaks got ready for the rest of the day. Which mostly involved getting dressed and leaving the house.

It isn't long before noon when the teenager enters the library. The van outside is wondered over. Even though she recognizes it, seeing it outside the market is always a reason to puzzle at the mystery of it.

She's still looking over her shoulder when she walks through the doors into the library. But as the doors close, Squeaks' head swivels around again so she's paying more attention to where she's going instead of where she's been. It takes her a few seconds before she finds Gillian at the counter, she's not expecting to see the librarian there. Usually it's her office or sometimes somewhere else in the building. The person at the counter is given a casually curious look as she wanders closer, head tilting toward one side as she looks from the stranger to Gillian.

It's Gillian who sees her first, over the shoulder of the young woman with the delicous smelling box of something. Is that a hint of vanilla? Of cream? Of all the things that seem like they should be delicacies in this day and age? Cause it is. It smells so much better than most things. But smell happened to be Juniper's forte, whether the girl knew it or not. "Squeaks!" Gillian exclaims, happy to see her and glancing toward the clock to confirm the time. Yes, still plenty of time. "Have you met Juniper yet?"

"So this is Squeaks, hi," she pops open the box, showing off pastries. Some glazed, some with drizzles of something on them, but definitely pastries. "Want one? I was dropping them off for the kids, and the librarians," she jokes, looking across at one of the older ladies who's off to the side… with a napkin and a mostly devoured donut.

The really good smells finally pick enough attention off unfamiliar faces that Squeaks' eyes go to the box as she gets close to the counter. She's smelled those smells in the market before, she's sure of it. They are very delicious smells. Hearing her name brings her eyes back up, all wide and a teeny bit surprised, but she grins soon after.

"Hi Juniper," she responds to the young woman. "I'm Squeaks." It's been said, but there's a hint of wondering about it. Wondering that is put on hold since there are pastries. She peeks into the box when it's opened, and a bobbles a quick nod. The "Yes" that follows sounds more like a question than an answer, even though she starts reaching for one of the treats.

"I hear you're practically my new baby sister," Juniper jokes, handing over a napkin so that the sugar and glaze and anything else doesn't get on any of the books. Gillian had made a glance in that direction, but the young woman cut off her words. "I was raised in the Lighthouse— the original one. On Staten. Though I was sixteen when they transfered me there, but it still counts." As far as she's concerned. She was one of the oldest of the kids, along with Elaine and Bray.

The pastries taste as good as they smell, though they are a sight tougher than freshly cooked. Maybe she's giving day old ones out, ones she doesn't want to sell from her truck today. That would make sense. But they still taste wonderful.

"I keep meaning to drop in and visit them, but it's hard enough keeping my truck running." The gas prices being what they are, the food prices— she's got a lot of expenses.

Gillian speaks up, on her heels, "If you need help— " She doesn't finish as Juniper waves her off with a 'No, I'm fine, really.' While the librarian may not like that answer, she focuses on Squeaks, "Do you have some time this afternoon?"

Juggling napkin and pastry, Squeaks makes careful work of wrapping the snack to contain crumbs while she nibbles. She doesn't want to get crumbs or sticky on the books either. After pinching off a piece for first tastes, she looks up at Juniper and nods again. "Yes," sounds far less like a question this time than the first, easy acceptance of another new to her Lighthouse sibling.

She pinches off another teeny bit of pastry while watching the talk between Gillian and Juniper. Which reminds her to reach into her pocket and pull out the money that had been left on the table. She sets it on the counter and nudges it toward Gillian. Then, "Yes. I was going to be here," Squeaks answers. "No Raytech today."

Stepping around the counter, Gillian moves to embrace the strawberry haired young woman, who nods, because no doubt she needs to get her truck over to Red Hook soon if she plans to sell anything for lunch. "Stop by any time. Bethany," she asides to the older woman in glasses with a finger full of sugar in her mouth who quickly removes it as her name is called. "Take this into the classroom and make sure to offer it around to the kids before class." Bethany nods, moving forward to take the package, under Gillian's eye.

Juniper grins, watching her go, "My money's on that she has another one at least," she jokes, before shaking her head. "It's nice to meet you, Squeaks. The Lighthouse, whether in a Lighthouse or in a cabin, is a great place to live." She's not that much younger than Gillian, really. The "adults" who had been in charge of the Lighthouse had barely been the age Juniper is now. But that didn't change anything.

As Juniper steps out, to return to her truck and no doubt get it moved again, the librarian's eyes move back to Squeaks, "I have an appointment with a lawyer finally," No doubt they are busy, and she didn't want to push favors if she could avoid it. "Cause becoming your guardian requires paperwork. I was wondering if you would like to come along."

"Bye Juniper," Squeaks calls after the pastry woman. She leans a little, stretching some to watch Juniper leave. And once the doors are closing again, her attention turns to her pastry. It is really good, just like it smells. And it doesn't even matter if it's not brand new freshly made, it's still tasty. She lifts the treat and nibbles off a bite.

She looks up from the pastry, looking over it really, when Gillian speaks. There's a little confusion in that look, maybe a teeny bit of worry too. Paperwork she knew about but lawyers? "Am I allowed to come with," she asks, lowering her snack. "What's the lawyer for?"

"Lawyers push the paperwork through. Becoming your guardian is a legal contract of sorts, I'm promising to make sure you have shelter, food, are treated well, have classes, that sort of thing." Gillian responds offhandedly, almost as if she doesn't feel this sort of thing needed to be filed with the government, but—

"We had to do the same thing with the kids who came to the Lighthouse." Even under that government. And also in Canada. "You won't be required to register, if you don't wish, of course, but this way you can legally work part time, go to school, all the other things."

And live with her, but she'll also leave that up to the girl as long as she stays with either her or the other kids most nights. She will hope they keep an eye on her most the time.

"So not bad things." She maybe feels the same about it not being needed. Like making the bed, it's just going to get messy again at bedtime. "I think probably registering." At this, the girl sounds like she's still wondering about it. It would make things easier, but she's not very sure how come.

"And stay with you." Because she does now. Mostly. Squeaks does still spend some nights with the others, and no nights for a long time in the Underneath.

Looking down at her pastry, the teenager squishes a finger into it. "It's forever, right," she asks nervously. Another finger presses into the pastry before she looks up at Gillian with that searching, hopeful gaze again.


There's a small catch of emotion in Gillian's breath for a moment, and then she's suddenly reaching for the young teen and hugging her furiously, just missing squishing the poor pastry between them and on her business casual clothes. Perhaps to keep from crying herself. She had left the Lighthouse back in Canada, because of the war, because her and her brother had disagreed terribly on something and she wouldn't budge from her stance and he would not budge from his. It had been one of the hardest things she'd ever done, though she wouldn't have admitted it to most people.

And seeing Hailey and the others once they came to the Safe House had brought that guilt back, that pain.

"Forever," she adds, firm, before she pulls back to look at her, trying to ignore that moisture in her eyes. "At least until you grow old enough to decide you'd rather have your own place." But even then. Even then. "I'll still expect you to visit often, even when you're my age."

Being reached for and hugged so tight surprises her, it isn't a reaction she was expecting, but the girl is quick to hug Gillian back tightly. It might not be that long ago that hugs were considered very weird, and they're still a little unfamiliar to her, but she's learned and decided they're usually good. She looks up when Gillian leans back, a teeny shadow of worry still there. But she nods a promise. "Lots of visits. Lots and lots."

Squeaks lifts her empty hand to touch a finger to the librarian's arm, her own version of a hug. But it's followed up by another, shorter, real hug. "When do you see the lawyer? Is that when it's all for reals and done?"

Looking away, Gillian rubs fingers over her eyes as if that will help things, or at least mask the fact that she had been fighting tears. "In an hour or so— enough time to get over there." In her car, which was parked just down the street.

"I hope it's all we need to do." She had sent over what she had been able to find, and that the girl will register definitely makes it easier. They could handle that another day, but she also knew where to go for that. With a registration she'll be able to come and go more easily.

"Afterwards we can get you a library card." Cause she certainly strikes her as one who would use it almost as soon as she had it. And a permanent residence and guardian had been necessary.

Worry makes her forehead crease when Gillian looks away, and the young teenager puts a whole hand on her arm. And she watches for a little bit, before saying anything. "Don't be sad," she says quietly, hopeful. "An hour isn't that long." It seems like a really long time though. She's not sure what to expect and that makes it a little scary. But she also wants the lawyer to finish things and make it for reals, to have a grown-up that actually wants her forever.

A real library card is definitely something to be excited about, and Squeaks even grins at it. There are so many things she could do once she had one. But right now there's waiting until they make the journey and see the lawyer. "It's going to be okay." It's said with certainty, because that's what Gillian said before, when she said she wanted Gillian to be her guardian.

Don't be sad. That earned a soft laugh and Gillian shook her head. "Not all tears are tears of sadness. Hopefully you'll learn that one day too." Tears of joy, tears of happiness. Though she would admit there had been some sadness behind it— regret, mostly. Of not having been there for those before. Of not being able to raise her daughter from the future. Of the son that had never been born. All of it.

Knowing possible futures had been painful, in more ways than one. Though she would not have traded knowing about Jolene or Nate for anything, even if she only got to see Jolene when she had been fully grown.

"It will be okay," she agrees.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License