It's a Secret


brennan_icon.gif liette_icon.gif melissa2_icon.gif

Scene Title It's a Secret
Synopsis After recovering Liette from a terrible accident, Melissa sees to her care with the unexpected arrival of Doctor Brennan.
Date March 8, 2010

Speakeasy Hotel and Casino

The Speakeasy Hotel and Casino is one of the most seedy places in all of Brooklyn, as close to an analogy of the Mos Eisley catina from Star Wars as ever there is one. In the hours of early evening as the sun is just setting behind gray clouds, the casino's regular clientelle have yet to emerge from their warrens and rat holes within the city, the light not yet faded enough to have them scurrying out into the dark like cockroaches from beneath a toilet.

Holed up in room 102 on the casino's ground floor, Melissa Pierce is presented with a situation she didn't entirely sign up for sitting on the corner of the bed, staring up at her with a silent consideration. For the fact that Melissa hasn't been leeching pain away from the girl who calls herself Liette for some time now, she's handling the broken arm perfectly fine.

"What's your name?" Liette finally asks, one fair brow raised as she considers the older blonde with a thoughtful expression. Liette is keeping that arm of hers tucked like a chicken wing to her side, but there should be tears— should be waterworks— should be some sign that she's actually hurt like she was before.

Now, she's just eerile contented and curious about her surroundings. "This place is really neat," she offers with a flick of blue eyes to the peeling paint, "is this where you live? My room's small too, but it's a lot cleaner. Are you poor?"

She's just full of questions.

Melissa is studying the girl, or more specifically, her arm. Even with a lack of pain it's weird that it doesn't look worse. "I'm Mel. And no, this isn't where I live. I just wanted some place to take you, where we could talk." Her head tilts. "You wanna tell me who that man was now? I know you said it was a secret, honey, but he's…gone, and I only want to help you. But I need all the information I can get first."
Knock, Knock

Instructions were specific, and with his battered leather doctors bag in hand, Brennan's at the door, 102, and looking back down to his phone. Ask for Anna.

This was not how he envisioned his afternoon. His afternoon was picking up his kids, picking up his wife and going out for a nice leisurely dinner. Maybe some romance, new shoes for the kids and then home. All while fighting the snow. The message had canceled it.

"Anna?" he calls out. "Are you there?" Please don't let it be a prank.

"Nope, can't." Liette replies simply, completely ignoring the knocking since her name obviously isn't Anna. The blonde's eyes drift to the floor as she inspects the patterning of the carpet, brows both raised. "Sorry. I'm sure someone'll come for me eventually, they always do." Swinging her booted feet back and forth, the young girl sways her head from side to side to s tune only she can hear. "I told you my name you should tell me yours— unless you want me to guess?" The very young girl's lips creep up into a playful smile. "I'm super good at guessing, you know."

Teeth toying with her lower lip, she continues to kick booted feet back and forth, her uninjured hand holding the hurt one. "It's for you," Liette ones after a moment one silence with one brow raised, "he seems nice." There's a crease of her brows at that comment, lips pursing to the side as her eyes follow the zig-zagging pattern on the carpet.

Melissa glances to the door, frowning a little. "I just told you mine." There are clearly more questions she wants to ask, but first, the door. She moves over to it, peeking out through the peephole, and her brows lift. She opens the door, motioning for Brennan to come inside. "Funny to see you here, doc. Let me guess. Text messages from a mysterious person?" She nods towards Liette. "Broken arm." first things first, you know.
Murmurings behind doors, muted conversation and then a door unlocked. Brennan turns from looking down the hall towards the opening door with equally raised eyebrows. "Mel?" Brennan's taken aback by who is at the door. Startled really and his hand grips the handles a little more tightly. "I was directed here.. by a message. I thought it might have been one of the ferry"

But she's letting him in and that's good. "Broken arm?" What did the person expect him to do, x-ray and set it here in the hotel room?" Brennan steps in quickly, avoiding staying out in the hallway too long and drawing undue attention. "First things first" and he lays his eyes on Liette. "Afternoon. I guess, i'm your doctor for this evening. What can I do for you?"

"Mel?" Liette furrows her brows together, looking over towards the door. "That's your name?" There's a wrinkle of her nose as her feet swing back and forth, "Is that short for something, like Melanie or Melodic or Melon?" There's a whimsical tone to the young girl's voice as she straightens up her back and tilts her chin up, peering towards the door with interest as Brennan is shown inside. For a girl with a broken arm, Liette — who looks to be roughly fourteen or fifteen years old — hardly looks worse for wear, save for guardedly watching her arm.

"Hi!" Liette cheerfully greets Brennan with a broad smile. "Doctor?" The girl asks with one brow raised. "I was supposed to go an hour ago, but my friend got hurt and he didn't get up. Now Mel's taking good care of me, she's real nice and has a super cool power." Liette's smily becomes somewhat toothy when she says that, her head tilted to the side.

"Do you think her name's short for Melon or Melody? I think it's short for Melon 'cause she's striped like one." Her hair, Liette means, and she's not one to talk about odd hair, what with the streaks pink in with her frazzled tresses. She doesn't exactly seem to understand what Brennan asked of her, though the squint Liette gives seems indicative of that.

Melissa shrugs as she closes and secures the door behind Brennan. "I have no idea. And yeah, I got handed someone else's phone with text messages. They told the person to tell me it was a message from the Ferry. So…bizarre." She moves over to the bed, sitting next to Liette with a bit of a smile. "I took her pain…sort of. I think," she explains to Brennan before Liette gets her attention again.

"Melissa. It's short for Melissa. But why can't you tell me who that man was? Can you tell me where you were supposed to go?"

Brennan would say what the Mel is short for, but that's Melissa's task really. He realizes too late that he shouldn't have said her name if he didn't know whether she was using that one or some other. "Doctor Brennan. You can call me Doc, or Harve. or Bren. Just don't call me late to dinner. Mel's pretty good at taking care of people, she's pretty good at making sure things don't hurt. But I'm going to need her to stop it so I can get a good judgement about your arm and whether it's something I can do on my own or whether I need to see about getting you to some place where I can x-ray"

Big hint to mel to drop the pain supression. "You're friend, you said he's hurt and then he never got up. Do you think you can show me after we're done here and I can look at him. See if there's anything that I can do for him?"

"He was all bloody after the bus hit him." Liette admits with a furrow of her brows, eyes cast off to the side to watch a cockroach slip out of sight beneath the nightstand beside the bed. "I dunno why he didn't just… get up and help me. But Melissa," full name's now, "helped me up and helped me so that's nice." She looks back towards Brennan with pursed lips, leaning in close to get a better look at him with a squint. "What do you need me to do, Doctor Brennan." She's very police about titles and full names it seems. "There's no medical equipment here," her eyes cast to the side, then back to Brennan again. "I'm sure it's nothing, it doesn't hurt anymore!"

As if to demonstrate Liette lifts out both her arms to flex her fingers, but then her brows furrow and her lips part, eyes go wide and a soft whimpering squeak escapes her lips and her arms pull towards her chest, one hand immediately moving to her left bicep, a keening noise in the back of her throat. "A— Ahh— It— it hurts." She seems surprised by this.

There's a brief wince at Brennan's last words, and Melissa shakes her head slightly, trying to discreetly mouth, "Dying," to him where Liette can't see. Liette gets a sympathetic look then, and Melissa carefully wraps an arm around her shoulders, trying not to touch her broken arm much. "Shh…I know it does, sweetie. Doc is gonna look at it, then I'll take the pain away again, okay? can you be strong for just a little while?" she murmurs to the girl.

Dying, likely dead. Brennan nods to Melissa and doesn't make further noises about going to see her friend. "Maybe he was hurt more than you, what is your name? Because I can start calling you pinky" Trying to distract her from the resurfacing pain. "Mel, help me get her jacket off so I can see her arm. "So pinky. You met Mel. She's a real kicker isn't she. I'm almost afraid some day of my daughters growing up like her. I'll have to fend off the guys with baseball bats."

Brennan works as gently as he can to take off the jacket, satisfied that there's a short sleeved shirt beneath and he won't need to be cutting it off. Or worse. Thoughts of how so very illegal likely is or how this can come off to someone walking in the door run through his head. Try explaining that to his wife. The violent bruise on her upper arm doesn't do much to make him feel comfortable about her arm and there's a glance to melissa. "Mel will use her gift soon enough but I need to just prod for a few moments okay, I need to feel for the bone. After that, I promise Mel's gonna dose you up good and i'll give you something too so that Mel won't wear herself out."

With that warning, Brennan's prodding some more, Liette's arm in his hnad and forefinger, middle and ring finger running over the bruised area to feel for any obvious fractures, ridges or the like. When he's done, he seems satisfied.

Big thick tears dribble down from the girl's lower eyelids, and sucking up a shuddering breath Liette quietly complis with Brennan's request, awkwardly unshouldering her blue suede jacket, one that now has flecks of sand and road salt in the back. That flimsy gray t-shirt she wars beneath shouldd o little to protect her from the winter chill, and the young girl tugs her gray wool scarf off once the jacket it shed, letting it slide the rest of the way to coil in her lap.

Sucking back a sob, the girl looks up at Brennan with wide eyes, but just slowly nods her head. "L— Liette," she introduces a bit haltingly, looking like for all her worth she's trying to be the bigger girl in the room and not be so distracted by the pain. "It's okay I— I'm doing it myself…" she adds rather distractedly afterward. It's then that Liette's throat works up and down and she nods her head once, slowly. "Th— there…" Her brows furrow when Brennan squeezes her bicep around where a large and nasty looking bruise has formed.

Seeing it herself, Liette draws in a sharp breath at the first squeeze. "Nnh— " Her brows furrow, giving a look as though she's concentrating. What Liette fails to realize is that the tickle she feels on her upper lip is a dribbling line of blood running from her left nostril.

Melissa helps Liette get the jacket off, then her arm is moving back around her, trying to comfort the girl. Until she gets a bit of a surprise. "You…what? You're evolved? Hold on." She gets up, moving into the bathroom, and she comes back with a wad of toilet paper, wiping gently at the blood. Then she tries to distract Liette while Brennan works. "You can manipulate your own pain, then?"

"No… I think she's just borrowed your ability" Brennan murmurs, turning away so that he can dig through his bag and look for what he needs. "The odds of actually running into someone who can do what you do, the odds of me running into another negator. They're pretty low. Keep an eye on her nose, probably straining herself. Liette, how about you let Mel do the pain thing. She needs the practice anyways, don't you mel" He winks to hte two of them before surfacing with gauze.

"Mel, go to the drawers there, there's a gideon's bible" There's always a gideon's bible. "Rip off the front and the back. if you need scissors I got some in my bag. Need to make a splint. Liette, what's your gift? Is it what Mel can do or is it something else, like copying?" Her arm held just so, waiting for the bible covers. "do you have a home or anything? Some place we can take you?"

"I'm special," Liette clarifies to Melissa as if it matters considerably. "I— " Liette's head comes back gently as Melissa daubs at the blood on her upper lip. There's a brightening of the red veins in her left eye too, some small capalaries burst under her skin beneath her eye and at her right temple. Whatever she's doing she can't feel how bad it hurts so she's still doing it. "Yeah, s'what Doctor Brennan said. I just did what you said you were doing when you touched me and made it feel better, it's super cool." One blonde brow goes up, and Liette glances over to Brennan.

"I— I have a home. I… I was supposed to be picked up." Blue eyes wander the room when Brennan gives Melissa instructions, and she seems disconcerted, as if perhaps exactly what's happening is finally hitting her. "I um, I— They're supposed to pick me up and take me home…" biting down on her lower lip, Liette swallows dryly and casts a look off towards where Melissa's headed at Brennan's order.

Melissa shakes her head. "Don't do it yourself. Doc's right. I need the practice," she says with a smile, eyeing Liette's eye cautiously. "Where's your home though, honey?" she asks, offer Liette the tissue before getting up to grab the bible. Good thing she isn't a devout Christian! She sits back down to make it into splints, watching Liette like a hawk. "What else can you do? Do you have to be touching someone to borrow their power? And can you take only one at a time?" No reason to let her know that she knows someone else who can borrow powers! Let her be special!

"We'll get you home Liette. I promise. I just need to get a look at your arm better. Someone sent us to help you. I need you to trust us, me and Mel, to do what we need to, to protect you. Same as I need to trust you, that you'll let us do that. Right now, that means coming with me and Mel to my office. There's an x-ray machine in the building, I can get you in and check your arm to see if it's broken or bruised. You okay with that?" Regardless of the answer, He's back to finishing the wrapping and then setting about to making a sling to help immobilize the arm. "We'll get you home, or wherever you need to go Liette"

Nodding her head slowly, Liette offers a faint smile to Doctor Brennan as she watches, her brows furrowed and blue eyes studying what he does with the bible covers. The makeshift slung, conveniently crafted outof her discarded scarf, keeps her arm secure and intact, tough Liette's anxiety about the pain seems to remain as she waits for Melissa. "I trust you, why shouldn't I?" The rhetoric in her tone is either refreshing or unsettling, one or the other.

"I'll do whatever you say, I'm a good girl. Always do what the doctor's tell me to do, just like Pop told me." Nodding her head once, Liette reaches out to take Melissa's hand with her good one, looking up to her with a thoughtful expression. "I just have to be exposed to an ability before I can do it myself. Pop calls it transitive reactive mimicry and it's really fancy." Seemingly proud of her ability, Liette quirks one brow up and offers a happy smile towards Melissa, though she nervously looks down to her arm again when she's considering stopping shutting off the pain. "I— I'll stop when you start." Seems she isn't much of a fan of the feeling of her own broken arm.

When Liette's blue-eyed stare settles back on Melissa, there's a smile spread on the girl's lips. "I can have as many abilities as I want, I just gotta be exposed to 'em. They go away after a while, but my body keeps a record of them in my DNA like memories! That's what Pop says though," Liette's head tilts to the side, her good hand stroking over her chin as she looks at Brennan.

"So… You're gonna help me. Do you work for Pop? Are— are you sure you can take me back home?" She doesn't answer the question about whether or not she knows where home is, there's a rather pointed evasion of that topic entirely. "I think it's kind've far away…"

Melissa glances towards Brennan, then she smiles and nods to Liette, giving the girl's hand a reassuring squeeze as she focuses on taking the pain away again. It causes a bit of a headache, and a bit of blood from her nose which is wiped away with the back of her hand. "You haven't told us who your dad is, remember? Do you go to a lot of doctors though?" she asks, making eye contact, hopefully keeping Liette from looking at her arm too much.

A bottle of Advil is thumped onto the bed beside Melissa, pointedly set there for her to take some for when the inevitable headache starts. "That is a mouthful for an ability but boy, Liette, I like the sound of that. Must come in handy" There's a glance to his watch and a thinning of his lips. "Do you know if you're allergic to any medication?" He's reaching into his bag for a pill bottle, shaking out a tablet before heading to the bathroom to get some cups of water for both the women. "I'm going to give you some codeine for the pain so that Mel won't have to keep it up much longer, and you won't either. Should take away the pain, then we'll drive down to the financial district and see about getting you're arm checked out proper. Call your father if you can remember. What's your last name Liette?"

"That's another secret, m'not supposed to tell anyone I meet about him." Which admittedly Liette has failed at some in that very admission. "I see doctors all the time, Pop has a whole staff of them. When I'm not going around doing my job, they're running tests and doing checkups and stuff." Nodding her head once, Liette purses her lips thoughtfully and finally relinquishes her use of Melissa's ability, exhaling a deep breath as she does. The broken blood vessels by her eye and near her nose stay as pronounced as they were a moment ago, though. "I get stuck with needles and stuff a lot, and have to sit in big donuts that go clunk, clunk, clunk and take cool pictures of my brain."

Wrinkling her nose, Liette moves off of the corner of the bed and settles her boots down on the carpeted floor, still holding Melissa's hand. Her blue eyes move towards Brennan then, brows furrowed thoughtfully. "I can't tell you my last name, m'not supposed to. I— I don't know about medicines or anything, or— how to call people?" There's a quirk of one of her blonde brows upward. "I um— they never let me do that stuff. The doctors always take care of me at the lab, and I'm not supposed to use phones or call people. My— my friend takes care of all of it."

Worriedly looking from Brennan to Melissa, Liette asks, "He's going to get cold if he keeps laying on the street like that. When's he going to get up and stop being lazy? Can we go pick him up? 'Cause he knows where we're supposed to go."

Melissa takes the pills and dry swallows them, then she brushes Liette's hair back from her face. "Sweetie…He was hurt really bad. There are people there who'll get him off the ground though, I promise," she says softly. "But we can't go see him right now. I really wish we could. But honey? If we don't know who your father is, and you don't know how to call him, we can't get you back to him. I promise that I won't say a word though. Cross my heart," she says, drawing an X over her chest.

"Some other doctors are taking care of your friend right now. I can inquire about him for you" Melissa has her water and drugs, the coedine is offered to Liette to take and the water. "Take that, and then we can get going" Sounds like she might have some medical condition, tumor maybe? Something, if she goes through an MRI often enough. "I'll turn on the radio, maybe there's an amber alert going. I can let the police know that you're well and we'll find out about your lazy friend" Not trying to cause ripples, just wanting to take care of the situation.

"They'll find me eventually…" Liette offers in return, teeth worrying at her lower lip. "Pop might get angry with me if I told anyone about him, 'cause he's really private and stuff. Taking the pill in one hand, Liette looks at it and then lifts it up closer to her eye. She brings it near, presses it to the tip of her tongue and looks to Brennan, then nibbles a corner off of the tiny codine tablet, bitterly washes it around in her mouth and exhales an exasperated breath.

"Thanks!" Liette says without any further explanation, placing the remainder of the pill in Brennan's hand without further explanation, as if expecting them to all understand her bizarre quirks or abilities without question. "The police won't know about me, Pop always said they wouldn't understand anyway. Policemen are nice to normal people, but I'm special! I get to have my own special police and doctors and everything! And now two cool new friends!"

Looking from Brennan to Melissa, Liette slides her fingers from the older woman's hand slowly. "How many times in a day should I take that pill, Doctor Brennan? You didn't tell me dosage like the other doctors usually do. I don't wanna make a bad mistake again and get sick by giving myself too much."

Melissa stands and encourages Liette to do the same, giving Brennan a curious look. "You are special, honey. Very special. But right now, let's go check out your arm so we can make it feel even better, hmm?" she asks, looking a touch paler than she was. Clearly maintaining the effect is still trying, but she's stubbornly keeping it up so Liette doesn't have to suffer.

Brennan just stares. Nibbled the pill. There's a raise of brows to the codeine pill missing a small chunk of it and a furrowing of thick brows - but not sylar thick. "Chemical replication" He muses after a moment and after she speaks, shaking his head. "That must come in handy" He rattles off a dosage schedules, guessing at her weight. "I'll take you home with me then, we'll see what we can do about getting you back to your pop then Liette. Maybe our mysterious friend who directed us to you will have some idea's hmm?" He closes up his bag and offers his hand to help her off the bed. "Lets get moving, and see if we don't get stuck in too much traffic. Don't happen to have teleportation in your bag of tricks Liette, do you?"

"I used to! I used to be able to heal people too!" Bright eyed and all smiles — and possibly a little doped up on codeine now — Liette follows along at Brennan's side when the doctor takes her hand. "I can do all sorts of things though, we can play a guessing game about it, but I bet I win at guessing what you do before you guess everything I can do." Blonde brows waggle and the unusually chipper girl offers a look over to Melissa, smiling broadly. She would offer out another hand, and she seems to consider it, but unfortunately her makeshift sling and broken arm makes that difficult.

"So is Melissa your daughter? You both have really blue eyes and she seems to listen to you a lot so I'm guessing she's your daughter!" Exactly how old does Liette think Brennan is. "Aw, this is so cool, Pop never lets me go exploring without my special friend. I can't wait to see everything! Oh, oh, oh! Can we watch movies? I wanna watch Casablanca!"

She just keeps rambling on, talking about her favorite scenes in a move several generations older than her. Somehow though, despite her innocence and chipper demeanor, there's one point about what Liette's said that leaves a seed of nagging worry in the back of both Ferrymen's minds; something Liette said about the people who take care of her.

They'll find me eventually.

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