none of these characters are my intellectual property. no profit intended or made. set after the episode "lamentations", which, after I watched it, I had nightmares. for weeks.


Catherine locks the hotel door.

Bennie barks, and she turns around; Jordan is smiling in the mirror. "Why do some people have crooked teeth, mommy?"

"Because, sweetie," and Catherine hunkers down, puts an arm around her. "Sometimes that's the way they're made."

"Then why do they wear braces if that's how they were made?"

Catherine looks at their reflection in the mirror, two curly haired heads tucked together. The dresser is low enough that Jordan can sit on the bed and make faces - Catherine blinks, and she smooths Jordan's hair down as Jordan grins, sticks her tongue out, grins again.

Frank's in Oakland, it's just them in the hotel. The security camera in the hallway makes her feel safer, but not really safe. Virginia was pretty bad, and they lived near Quantico then. This time they're in the kind of residential area that the victims come from, not the cops.


"Because they don't like crooked teeth," Catherine says.

Jordan hops down off the bed, stands beside Catherine. "I like crooked teeth," she says.

Bennie barks again, and Catherine shudders. She's woken up in the middle of the night three nights running, every time at twenty past three. She saw a man on the stairs at fifty six past nine, so the time isn't relevant, at least she doesn't think so. A man - maybe a man. Catherine's seen a lot of evil things done by people pushed to it because of their past, years of abuse, sadistic torture provoking sadistic torture. That keeps her up at night but she doesn't wake up at twenty past three, sweating and feeling her rib cage bang around. Those people, they have something human recognizable within themselves. What was in their house, she's not sure.

Catherine does anything and everything she can to stop from going to sleep, lately. She stays up watching movies while Jordan curls up beside her, she calls Frank, she reads, she works. Eventually she'll drift off, only to hit that wall in the middle of the night and remember what was in their house. Jordan never wakes up, which is something to be thankful for.