New fic! New fic!
Pleurer pour l'Aide
Notes: I got this idea from writing chapter seven of my other DNG fic, Wishworld. Go read it if you want the reference. ;) Anyway, the format for this will be pretty self-explanatory if you read it. So will the characters.
Disclaimer: My name is Moira. :deep breath: And I do not own Degrassi. :sob: Admitting that you have a problem is the hardest step, right Oprah? Oh, the pain! :sobsobsob:
Chapter One: Emo Boy
1. What To Do When Your Parents Get Divorced
Julia Manning winced as her son shied away from the tentative hand that she rested on his shoulder.
“Craig, you can come with me. Please, come with me.”
Craig shook his head. “Stay.”
Julia sighed. “I can’t, Craig. You know why…”
“Mom, it’ll get better! He said that it would.”
“He won’t, Craig,” she said firmly. “I can’t force you to come, but I want you to. Sweetheart, I love you so much, I don’t want to leave you here.”
Craig looked up at his mother. “I want to…”
Julia’s face lit up. “Then come. It’ll be fun, just you and me. I’ll start teaching you how to play guitar again…”
Craig’s mouth started to move into a smile, until Albert Manning peeked his head in the doorway. He smiled at Craig in what he thought was a supporting manner, then turned his eyes to Julia. “Don’t try to influence my son, Julia.”
Julia whirled around angrily. “He’s my son, too.”
Albert’s face was stormy. “Did Joey put you up to this?” He spat out Joey’s name like it left a bad taste in his mouth. “So not only does he take my wifeaway from me, he wants to take my child, too?”
Julia threw up her hands in frustration. “Would you stop blaming Joey for everything? He has nothing to do with this!”
“He has everything to do with this! You’re leaving me for him!”
“Our marriage was over a long time before Joe came into the picture, Albert,” Julia spat.
“What does he have that I don’t?” Albert yelled. “Welfare checks? A toupee?”
“He has a conscience, for one,” Julia yelled back.
Albert sighed, turning his attention to Craig, who was huddled on his bed, his hands over his ears. “Craig, son, if you want to leave with your…mother,” he said the word with disgust, “I won’t stop you.” Craig stayed silent, and he started to rock back and forth on the bed. “Well, Craig? Do you want to leave me?”
Craig wanted to say yes. He wanted to leave. He wanted to go with his mom. At the same time, he wanted everything back to normal, he wanted to go back to the days before Dad hit Mom that one time in the kitchen, before there was yelling all the time. He wanted to go back to when his Dad would cook for everyone and his Mom would play the guitar in the corner, singing softly, while his Dad smiled over at her.
His mother was looking at him pleadingly. “Craig…”
But his mother was leaving. His mother was giving up.
“I want to stay,” his voice said, though he didn’t want to. “I want to stay with Dad.”
Albert’s face contorted in triumph, while Julia’s fell. “All right,” she said softly, and Craig saw tears in her eyes. She bent down, wrapping her arms around his small frame. Craig breathed in her scent, trying to imprint it in his mind. “If you need anything, if you’re ever scared or you need help, or you just wanna talk, you can call me,” she whispered. “Your dad won’t let you, but I’ll be in the book under Jeremiah.”
Craig nodded. “Our secret,” he said.
Julia smiled against the top of Craig’s head, her tears falling into his soft, dark hair. “Our secret.”
2. What To Do When You Lose A Parent
Craig walked inside the house, slamming the door behind him in his excitement. “Dad! Dad, guess what? I aced the English test, just like I told you I would…” he trailed off at the sight of his dad, standing at the kitchen counter. A bottle of brandy was open on the kitchen table, and there was an empty glass in his hand. “Dad?” Albert Manning was staring off into space, his mind elsewhere. His hand was clutching the glass so tightly that his fingers were white.
Craig dropped his book bag in the corner and walked over to his dad, tugging on his shirt sleeve. “What’s wrong?”
Albert snapped out of his trance, glancing down at Craig, looking almost irritated at the interruption. He then sighed and bent down to Craig’s level, taking his thirteen year old face in his large hands. “Craig, sport, I’ve got some bad news.”
Craig’s eyes widened. “What? What’s wrong?”
“It’s your…mother, Craig.” Albert still pronounced the word like it was dangerous. “She’s sick.”
Craig’s stomach dropped. He hadn’t spoken to his mother in two years, after she’d moved to Toronto he’d lost her number, and he hadn’t dared to ask his dad for it. “What? How sick?” he demanded.
“She’s gone, sport,” Albert said gently, his eyes hard. Craig felt like he’d been punched in the stomach. “I’m sorry, son.” Albert laid a hand on his shoulder briefly, and then straightened up and walked out of the kitchen.
Craig stood there for a long time.
3. What To Do In an Abusive Relationship
“Craig! How many times have I asked you to use that goddamn coaster!”
Craig jumped about a foot in the air as his father’s voice boomed through the living room. “I’m sorry, Dad, I—I forgot…I—”
“I work hard every day, and this is how you repay me?” Albert strode into the room, his suit rumpled and his hair messy. He looked tired and angry, and Craig’s heart started to pound. He’d had a bad day, and bad days for his dad were never a good thing. He grabbed Craig’s glass from the side table and shoved it in Craig’s face. “What is so hard about putting a cup on a piece of cardboard? Huh?”
“I’m sorry, Dad—”
Albert suddenly threw the cup against the wall, the glass shattering on impact. Craig fell immediately silent. “Shut. Up.” Albert said dangerously. “I am so sick of your rationalizations!” Albert’s hand went to his belt. “You know I hate to do this, but what other choice do I have?” he asked.
Craig eyed his hand fearfully, which was pulling the belt from its loops. “You’re making me do this, don’t you understand?”
“If you were a better son, this wouldn’t happen. Don’t you get it?”
It never stops.
4. What To Do When You Move Away
“I know this is going to be a bit of an adjustment, Craig, but I bet we can make it work,” Joey rambled, maneuvering a box of Craig’s clothes into the room in the garage. “I know it’s not much, but…”
“It’s perfect,” Craig cut in, setting down his own box of clothes. And it was. “I’ll be fine in here.”
“Great,” Joey said, checking his watch. “I hate to move in and run, but I’m late for work.” The short man clapped Craig on the shoulder on his way towards the door. “You’ll be okay in here?”
“Sure,” Craig said with feigned confidence. “I’ll be fine.”
“Great,” was tossed over Joey’s shoulder on the way out the door.
Craig watched him go, not knowing whether to be insecure or amused about the man’s quick dismissal. Then, remembering the speech he’d gotten when he’d moved in, went for the latter. “You’re completely welcome here,” Joey said. “I work full time, and Angela goes to day care, so you’ll be on your own quite a bit. That isn’t a problem, is it?”
Craig shook his head, remembering. Joey was so open, so full of life, it could be disconcerting at times. It was such a dramatic change from his dad, a man who, suffice to say, didn’t exactly get off on family bonding. Joey, on the other hand, had never held back with anything, even in the short time that Craig had spent with him so far.
Craig sat on the small couch-that-holy-crap-it-pulls-out-into-a-b
Jumping off the couch/bed, Craig strode into the bathroom, splashing cold water on his face. Bracing his hands on the sink, Craig closed his eyes and took long, deep breaths.
In, out. In, out.
Opening his eyes, he looked at himself in the small mirror, leaning his forehead against the cool glass. His eyes, so much like his mother’s, were overshadowed by the pure Albert Manning in his features. His forehead, his cheekbones, his mouth, all screamed of his father.
He looked like his father. Does that mean that he acted like his father, too?
Did his eye twitch when he was annoyed like his dad’s? Did he crack his knuckles when he was bored? Did he tap his hand against his leg when he was impatient? Did he inherit all these little tics?
Did he inherit his temper?
He was only fourteen. But when he got older, would he start to emulate his father? Would he freak out over the smallest things? Would he turn all his love into hate? Or would it turn itself? So many questions.
Craig stood there for the rest of the night.
5. What to Do When Dealing With a Psychological Disorder
Craig sat in the ER waiting room, rocking back and forth, muttering. “Sorry, so sorry, I’m so, so…”
Joey’s hand rested on his back firmly. “Calm down, Craig.” His voice was deceptively calm, and he had a lisp over his swollen bottom lip.
Craig shook his head. Angela’s small, scared face kept flashing through his mind. Scared. Terrified. Of him.
“Craig. Craig!” Joey’s hand moved to the back of his neck, gripping it tightly. “Craig, it’s okay. We’re gonna get a doctor, and he’s gonna help you…”
“Nothing helps,” Craig cut in. “I’m crazy. I’m so crazy. I’m sorry, Joey…”
“You’re babbling,” Joey said softly. “C’mon, kid, calm down…”
“I’m so sorry, Joey,” Craig choked out, his throat closed with tears. “I screwed up. I took your money, and I fucked things up with Ash, and I just…I’m so sorry.”
Joey’s face was stricken, right up in his face. “There is nothing to be sorry for,” he said firmly. “Listen to me. We’re going to get you help. None of this is your fault. No one blames you.” Craig let out a muffled sob. “God, Craig,” Joey sighed and pulled him into a tight hug. “You’re my son,” he said, his throat choked. “I love you, and we’re going to get through this.”
Craig kept silent, holding on to Joey’s shoulder tightly. Like a lifeline.
Heh. I love the italic key. This is meant to be a writing excersize for me, to get a handle on the characterizations of the characters I don't write that much. I started out easy with my Craig baby.