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|Lies and Mysteries|
|Name:||Lies and Mysteries|
|Series:||Hearts of Hallowan|
|Release date:||June 20, 2011|
|Previous chapter:||Bad News|
|Next chapter:||Filling out Forms|
"What's going on? How is she doing?" Travis was in a panic as he walked into the hospital waiting room, his younger brother Perry running up quickly behind. "Where's Dad?"
"He's coming soon," Janie said as she swooped in to give Perry a hug, "He said he needed to take care of some business first. How are you?" She let go of Perry and pulled her oldest son into a hug.
"I'll be alright," Travis said as Janie let him go. "It's a shock, to be sure. Do they know who it was?"
"Well, Mrs. Hammond says that she saw-" Janie looked towards the hospital doors and her talking ended abruptly. Gabriel, complete with police uniform, had just walked through, accompanied by a man with short dark hair who chose to keep his eyes focused on the ground.
"Gabe..." Janie, at least for the moment, either didn't notice or ignored the other man, and moved into a tight hug with Gabriel. Gabriel took off his hat and kissed Janie softly on the cheek, while for the first time that day, Janie let forth all her tears.
"...Dad?" The man accompanying Gabriel Ullman looked up for the first time since entering the ward. This action was met with a mixture of responses from the family. Travis looked down at his feet, Tyler checked his cell phone, Katherine's light blue eyes focused in on his with a caring gaze, and Perry's darted nerviously between his brother, his father and his mother. "...Mom?" The man continued, while Gabriel and Janie exited their embrace. Gabriel moved towards him, while Janie's previously emotional face took on a stony, somewhat angry look.
"Korey," Janie spoke, but without the softness that had accompanied the names of her other children. "I suppose that your father told you, didn't he?" Korey nodded his head quietly, and Janie's eyes darted to Gabriel's.
"He had a right to know. He had to know," Gabriel said as if justifying what he had done. "There's no reason why-"
"I don't want to hear it." Janie said abruptly, putting a premature end to the conversation. All was quiet for a moment, then Janie, frustrated, exhaled and swiftly walked through the doors out of the ward.
"I'd better... you know," Gabriel quickly pursued her, leaving five of the six Ullman siblings remaining in the waiting room. All was quiet for a moment, while the brothers and sisters decided just what they should do.
"Oh, Korey!" Katherine was the first to break down, and she ran towards her brother with arms outstretched. Korey warmly embraced her, and for the first time since arriving the stone-cold look of fear he'd had left his face. Travis and Tyler were less enthusiastic.
"What were you thinking, bringing him here?" Janie demanded of Gabriel in a harsh whisper.
"Janie," Gabriel said firmly, "He has a right to know. He should be here for his sister."
"I told you- I told you that he was not allowed any more because of what he did."
"What he did is irrelevant when his sister is in the hospital," Gabriel said, his voice getting stronger.
"No." Janie said. "No. You tell him to leave. You tell him to leave now. He is not welcome here."
"Well, Janie," Gabriel said, "That is not your decision." Gabriel turned around and walked back towards the doors to the waiting room. Janie spoke just before he reached the doors.
"How did you convince him to come, anyway? I was dead sure he was never going to show his face around here again."
"I told him his sister was in trouble and that if he cared about her, and if he cared about his family, he would be here."
"You shouldn't have told him. You should have told him not to come." Janie spoke with a nearly emotionless calm; her voice and face were neither sad or angry.
"Janie, please." Gabriel moved closer, "For the sake of this family, let him in. Its been long enough, it's time to forgive what happened. He cares, he obviously does... just let him stay."
Gabriel walked back through the doors into the waiting room, followed soon after by Janie, who continued to carry a near emotionless expression and did not speak.
"Mom?" Korey walked up to her, "I know you don't want me here. I want you to know that I don't think I've ever done anything wrong, and I wish you would let me explain it all to you. Please stop holding this grudge against me, because I haven't even-"
"STOP." Janie snapped at her son, "I've heard this all before. There's no excuse for what you did, and you know it. The fact that you're even still here instead of out the door like you should be is because your father decided you somehow get the right to be present here, even though it's apparent to me and your siblings that you stopped caring about our family years ago. You should be ashamed. The idea that you... you liar... that you can stand there and pretend as if--"
"Mrs. Ullman? Er..." A doctor had entered the waiting room holding a clipboard. She spoke to Gabriel next, "Are you Gabriel Ullman, the father? I'm Dr. Garenna
"Yes, Doctor," Gabriel responded. "Er.... how is she?"
"Well, that's just the thing," Dr. Garenna responded as a most peculiar expression played across her face. "We, um... We can't find anything wrong with her, except that she's apparently asleep." The news was not what anyone had expected. They had all been prepared for catastrophic injury, broken bones, comas and surgeries, and the idea even of something worse had lingered in the back of all their heads. but- nothing wrong with her? How could that be?
"We ran a lot of tests, we took a lot of scans, we checked her over completely. We can find nothing - and I mean nothing - physically wrong."
"How... how can that be?" Gabriel spoke, in complete shock, "I saw the scene. The report said she flew at least ten feet in the air. She was hit by a car! How can she not have been injured at all!?"
"Well... we don't know. She has barely a scratch on her. She's asleep, it seems, and that's it. We haven't tried to rouse her yet, because we've been wrapping up our tests, but we can take you all back there now." The doctor led the clan through a set of doors on the opposite end of the waiting room, into the hospital ward itself. She walked down a couple of hallways until she reached a set of medical beds. Marci occupied the one nearest the group as they walked in. True to the doctor's word, not a single bone was visibly broken, and barely any part of her was scratched or bruised, as if she had never been hit at all. "We're going to wake her now. Would you two-" Dr. Garenna motioned to Jaine and Gabriel, "like to come up here, please?" Gabriel and Janie stepped forward towards the head of the bed and stood above Marci. She was lying there in a peaceful state of apparent rest. "Marci?" Dr. Garenna leaned in close to Marci and spoke her name a couple times. Nothing.
"Marci?" Janie spoke her name. Marci's eyes flew open at once.
"OH! Oh..... no no no, oh no no..." Marci immediately fell into a state of near-panic.
"What!? What's wrong?" Janie frantically spoke, wondering what was wrong with her daughter.
"Wha?... Mom? Mom, what happened? How..." Marci was not at all dazed or tired-looking. She seemed totally alert, as if she had been awake for hours, and a completely confused expression was visible on her face.
"Marci-" Gabriel spoke, "We'll explain everything. Just be calm."
"But... but we have to do something! We've got to get out!"