They're Ours




Peggy and George Childs

Scene Title They're Ours
Synopsis After months of being missing, Gillian finally calls home, with important questions. Is her home really her home?
Date May 18, 2009

Bus Station: Queens

Public payphones have never exactly been a rare commodity in major American cities. It's a bus station in Queens where Gillian stands, shoving coins into the small silver slots and hesitating as she stands there a few moments, listening to the dialtone. The promise to Victor replays in her head, not in full detail. It's the words that a certain woman of perfect memory said that repeats with far more detail. Every inflection, every hint in her voice. All of it. Gillian Winters. Brian Winters.

Impossible. All of it.

The numbers are dialed in from memory, a memory even earlier than the easy to access ones. A local number for this area. No need to plug many coins in. If they'd changed their number recently, Victor would have said something, surely. She waits for the ring and hopes for an answer, biting on her lower lip.

There's a prolonged period of ringing over the phone, almost to the point where it would seem like no one is around the answer. Finally, a mildly exasperated female voices comes over the phone, panting and huffing, "H— hello?" There's a few more heavy breaths, and the background noise on the other side is drowned out momentarially as a buss rolls up, breaks hissing as it comes to a stop to let passengers off and take on new ones.

Wonderful timing, bus. Gillian can't help but look towards it, bringing up her free hand to cover her other ear so she can hear the voice on the other side a little better. It's been quite a long time since they've spoken, but a daughter doesn't forget her mother's voice. Right? "Mom? It's… Gillian." Is that how to start a 'not dead' phone call? Apparently. Months ago her sister had been found dead, murdered. She went missing days after Gillian disappeared. One would probably suspect the same could have happened to her.

"Gillian!?" The exasperated sound becomes even more pronounced as she shouts away from the phone, "George! George!!" The shouting grows louder, followed by te sounds of thundering footsteps, "Pick up the other phone, it's Gillian! George!" There's a loud click and a scrape from the other end of the phone, followed by a slight echo as another line is opened when the second phone is picked up.

"Jesus Christ." George Childs hollars over the receiver, "Gillian? Gilly is that you? Sweetie, are you okay? Where are you I'll come get you right away." In the background, Gillian can hear her mother trying to hide the fact that she's crying.

This is going about as well as could be expected.

And this would be exactly why she avoided calling them for… almost half a year. Gillian pulls the phone away from her ear for a moment, closing her eyes and letting her forehead rest against the divider that seperates one from from the one next to it. "Yeah, it's me." The sound of her mother crying, trying to hide it… A shaky breath is inhaled through parted lips and she rasps in her usual voice, hopefully loud enough to be heard over the sounds of a bus station. "I wanted to let you know I was okay." She'd promised her brother, and the promise is being kept, but there's so very much that… "And I need to know something; something important. It might sound totally crazy and I know it's a fucking terrible thing to ask after I vanished off the face of the god damn earth for months…"

"You'll have plenty of time to ask questions once I come get you." George demands into the phone, "Gillian tell me where you are right this minute, do— do you have any idea how worried we've been? How worried your brother— I— " It's unusual for her father to be showing emotion. "After what happened to your sister we— we thought— you tell me where you are right this instant! Whatever trouble you're in — " always so judgemental in assuming she did something wrong, " — we'll fix it, sweetie. Just please, let me come get you, let your mother see you."

There's a tense sound in George's voice, and finally Gillian's mother whimpers back onto the phone, "Please, Gillian, p— please come home— we love you— whatever's wrong we can work it out. We— please."

"I'm twenty-two," Gillian finds herself snapping right back, unable to get over the frustration of parents. But she's been missing for month. Her younger sister, dead. Jenny had always been the favorite. That had been known. "Listen I'm fine. I can't tell you where I am. It doesn't matter where I am. I'm fine." The raspy voice gives emphasis to the words, lifting her forehead up and opening her eyes to look at the number pad on the phone. Some things rarely change much, and public phones seem to be one of them.

Despite her stress on the words, there's different levels of fine, and the ones she's at may not match what any parent would want for their children… If she really is their child.

"I need to know if you're really my parents. I need to know if I'm adopted."

"H— how could you say that?" Her mother rasps into the phone, sobbing now, "You— of course it matters where you are— you matter to us! I— "

Gillian's question, however, causes her mother's breathing to hitch in her throat, and for George to just fall awkwardly silent. There's a few huffing, panting breaths on the other end of the line, clearly the sounds of her mother trying to get herself into some measure of composure. Then, after a few minutes of dead silence, George is the only one talking.

"Why— why're you asking us this, Gilly?" A few more muffled whimpers comes from her mother, muted by the sound of her hand trying to cover the phone. But there's a distinct tone in George's voice, one that is markedly different from earlier, and is the first indication that something is clearly awry.

Awkward silence. Never a good answer to a serious question. Gillian can feel the frustration beginning to build inside her, and it's calling upon the same sensation she had while overhearing a conversation a few days ago. Overhearing a conversation, and listening to a comment that couldn't be possible. Suddenly the sound of the people on the bus carries much further. Frustrated whispers of being late— people who think the bus should just get moving, someone who's worried they won't have the fare to get back. "Fuck," she rasps into the phone. Not just at the people on the other end, but also at everything entering into her ears. She kinda wishes she would've stuck around to talk to that Elisabeth woman about her ability now.

Could be worse. Everyone in the bus station could be electricuted by now.

"Is it true?" she asks in a too loud voice, like someone trying to talk over loud music in a party. She's the only one who can hear most of the noise, though.

More silence, "Gillian I…" There's a moment of hesitation from George, and then, "Gillian, I— why're you asking us this? I— of course you're our daughter. You— you're not adopted." There's a tightness and tension in George's voice, hesitance as he has to consider each and everything he says. "Honey, is— is that why you left? Did you think you were adopted?"

"Sweetie, come home." Her mother calls into the mouthpiece, clearly only barely able to control herself. "Please— please come home we love you."

Please be quiet. The moment back on that rooftop when she heard the name and knew the accusation that the muscian/lawyer/archer had been making… Gillian tries to focus on something else instead. The first moment that she met up with the same woman to take the boat across. The one ferry she didn't have to pay for. Calming down is important. And memory doesn't hurt anyone.

Except when it pushes every tense in their voice into her memory in ways she will never be able to forget. "I'm sorry," she finally rasps, even meaning it as she tries to keep her heart somewhere other than that moment— or any moment that might be dangerous. "I know you love me, but— dad, this isn't why I disappeared, but it's important. I can't tell you why. But please don't lie to me." She's had enough lies. She's told enough lies. Mostly of omission, but they're still lies.

"Does the last name Winters mean anything to you?"

Gillian gets her wish, the silence is deafening.

It takes a long and awkward few minutes for either of her parents to say anything. In the end, it's George's hushed voice. "How… How did— he told me he wasn't going to tell you." There's anger there, frustration and disbelief. Even her mother has stopped sobbing in the background, now just hauntingly silent as George's tone becomes accusing.

"I— I thought he was just looking for you. Christ Gillian, what— how did you get mixed up in— " It's confirmation without a yes being said, and George realizes as much. "I— I'm sorry, Gillian. I'm so sorry. We— you are our child, we've raised you since you were just a little girl, I— we shouldn't talk about this over the phone. Tell— tell us where you are and I'll come get you."

Perfect memory never hurt anyone. Gillian never quite understood it when she had heard the woman speak on her power as both a blessing and a curse. A tremor breaks through her body as she gets the answer. He was looking for her. Told them he wasn't going to tell. That might be asked about later, but that's not at the forefront. Her family isn't her family. Her full name isn't her name. Not a simple yes, but a lot more vivid than even that. An answer she can't wait to be able to forget in full detail.

"I can't— how could— "

They lied.

The first time she heard it, despite the many seeds of doubt that were planted, she tried to say it couldn't be that. Any excuse possible. But maybe there are no real coincidences in the world she got thrown into one day six months ago.

She doesn't even bother to wipe away the tears that finally form as she looks off into air, not really seeing anything that's in her line of sight, "Jenny and Victor?"

"They're ours." George breathes into the phone along with a sigh. It's evident from the weak tone of voice, that he doesn't expect to see his daughter any time soon. "Gillian we… it's not as simple as it sounds. We— the people we work for gave us to you. It— it was an order, Gillian. But— but we grew to love you, we— " There's a weak sound and an awkward swalow from George. Her mother has yet to say a word. "We love you, but— but you were adopted. We— please don't make me have this conversation over the phone."

Something on her mother's end of the phone catches Gillian's attention, something hushed from her absolute silence, heard just after George's words. A human ear couldn't pick up the subtleties of a whisper, but Gillian's hearing is far from human now.

"Almost got her location," the voice whispers, "keep her on the phone, I'll call down to the office to have someone bring her in."


The people they work for. Jenny and Victor our theirs. Gillian might need minutes to process everything, but the more she hears the harder it is to keep her emotions in check, to focus on anything beyond the roof she lived under. The people she met there. The abilities she absorbed. Which means she hears things that she shouldn't hear, things that envoke a reaction. Keep her on the phone.

They almost have her location. Whoever they are. The people they work for?

As soon as the thought processes, she slams the phone down onto the hook and begins to run for it. Emotions are in far too much turmoil to think on that table where she met her brother— who isn't her brother— the table where she repaired a relationship she thought was broken…

Those tears she tried to ignore still fall, even as she rubs at her eyes. How could they do this to her? Even if she wants to, even if she needs to, she doesn't stop moving. Not for a while.

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