Picking up the Pieces- A H&K: MD Christmas Special

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Hoitash
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Picking up the Pieces- A H&K: MD Christmas Special

Post by Hoitash » Tue Nov 19, 2013 1:28 pm

Do I really need to say how much I frakking love Christmas again?

Lianam inspired me to change my Christmas story from an adventure involving a WWII bunker loaded with artifacts into something a little more meaningful and Christmas related. Said other story will be a New Years Gift instead, since I don’t have any noodles or tangerines.

Anyway, this story involves a certain someone from my recent Halloween Special, and takes place following it. So let’s dive in, shall we?

Picking up the Pieces- A H&K: MD Christmas Special
Chapter One: Call Me Ishmael


Becoming a parent changes you. When I realized I was going to be a father, my entire world was knocked over the head with a whiskey bottle. As a result, I looked at everything in a new way and continued to do so. That, when you get right down to it, more than anything else, is why this story exists.

A few days after the dust had settled from a certain case involving a close encounter of the fucked up kind, I again entered the hospital and worked my way to a certain room in the rehab/recovery ward. At least I was able to dodge the Head Nurse, which took some doing because the room was harder to find now that there wasn’t a cop next to the door- when the murder sprees stopped, the police started scaling back their efforts on the case. I figured another month of no leads and it would get shelved with all the other cold cases. Or some government flunky would make them close it because they were getting too close to the truth. Managing to arrive at the right door without too much hassle, I knocked quickly and walked inside, closing the door behind me.

Officer Miho Minami was still in the private hospital room, at least. Instead of sitting at the small desk by the door like the last time I had shown up, she was sitting next to the large bed, a checkers board placed on the mattress between her and the bed’s occupant, Kim Soon-hee.

The young woman was already improving, it seemed; her long black hair was washed and free of blood and grit. Her dark brown eyes no longer looked like they’d bulge out of their sockets in fright, and her skin seemed a slightly healthier shade, though she was still awfully pale. She was still wearing a hospital gown, and still seemed far too small for the oversized bed. She was lying on her side as I entered, her head propped up by one arm, while the other lay on her side, an array of tubes and needles imbedded into it from several large machines on the other side of the bed with more lights and knobs than seemed necessary.

As I closed the door behind me she and Officer Minami looked up at me. Minami jerked and tensed up, but relaxed when she recognized me, easing back into her seat, though she still kept an eye on me. I gave her a quick nod of approval; never could be too careful, after all.

“Hello,” I said, placing the briefcase I had brought with me on the desk along with my hat and a newspaper that was likely the officer’s, “I believe I owed you a snack, Miss Kim?”

Soon-hee stared at me as if I might vanish if she blinked, “You came back.”

I grinned and nodded, noticing that her voice didn’t sound like ragged sandpaper anymore, “Yep; I said I’d come back, so I did. I also said I’d bring a snack, so I did. I got one for you, too, Officer.”

“Thanks,” Minami said, and turned back to face the game board.

I opened my briefcase with a dramatic flourish and pulled out a small brown bag. There was only one chair in the room, so I turned to Soon-hee and asked, “Is it alright if I sit on the bed?”

The young woman nodded, eyeing the bag with curiosity, trepidation, and maybe a little fear. Taking my seat carefully, so as not to disturb the game board or rattle Soon-hee, I settled onto the stiff mattress and pulled out a large orange from the bag, which I handed to the young woman.

“Here, this should qualify as sweet and healthy,” I stated, “I also brought an apple if you’d rather have that.”

Soon-hee shook her head and gingerly accepted the fruit with the tube-filled hand, “Thank you, si…Kenji.”

“You’re welcome,” I replied, then handed one to Minami before pulling out a third for myself.

“I also brought some napkins,” I stated, pulling a small stack from the bag and placing them on the bed.

Soon-hee nodded, her expression determined as she tried to peel the orange. Her fingers seemed weak, as she appeared to fumble a lot, but my experience as a former teenager told me offering help was a bad idea. Officer Minami seemed to share this sentiment, as she quietly peeled her own orange, systematically picking away any trace of pith she could. I was less fickle about my fruit, and just peeled and separated the pieces to eat. Eventually Soon-hee managed to stick a fingernail into the skin, piercing it and bringing her one step closer to peeling her snack.

“Yes!” she breathed as she started peeling her orange.

“Good to see your doing better,” I said.

“I am, mostly,” Soon-hee said as she slowly peeled the orange, “they let me out of the bed to use the bathroom now, but they still got a bunch of things shoved into my arms most of the time.”

“Fluids and the like?” I guessed.

Soon-hee nodded, then glanced down at her fruit and mumbled, “And morphine.”

Minami, who had worked in Narcotics before being transferred to Vice, explained, “Standard Operating Procedure for long term users is to wean them to prevent any serious withdrawal related health problems and reduce the withdrawal’s effects. For someone in your state, they’ll probably wean you over the course of several months. Maybe a year if they have to.”

“That’s what the doctors said,” Soon-hee mumbled.

Picking up on her subdued demeanor, I remarked, “You don’t seem to like that very much.”

Soon-hee gave an awkward shrug as she placed a piece of fruit into her mouth. She spent several long moments chewing it before swallowing and stating, “They said it was standard.”

“True,” I conceded, “But that doesn’t mean you have to like it.”

“…I don’t like it,” Soon-hee confessed, “I don’t like that They forced the drugs into me, and I hate that my body still wants them. I want to move on with my life, not be stuck in a hospital addicted to drugs for the rest of my life.”

“That won’t happen,” I declared, hoping to cheer her up a bit, “Besides, the past is always with us. The trick is to learn from it and be able to move beyond it. I’d say you’re well on your way in that regard.”

“I know,” Soon-hee grumbled, then, proving she was still a teenager despite everything, added, “but I don’t have to like it.”

I smirked and chewed on a piece of orange for a bit before swallowing, “No, you don’t…. As long as I’m here, d’you mind if I watch the game?”

Soon-hee looked up at Minami, who nodded, and then nodded herself. I didn’t want to just drop in and dash off right away, and watching the game kept me involved, however tangently. Besides, I was curious how her recovery was going.

I readjusted my position to be slightly less uncomfortable, and watched as the two ate and played. I guessed Minami had taught the young woman how to play, as she seemed unsure of the rules on a few occasions. The game had apparently not been going on for long before my arrival, as neither side’s pieces had advanced very far. Minami had collected a few of Soon-hee’s black pieces, but she had a better strategic position for the moment as a result, as well as a bit more space to maneuver.

I waited until a few minutes had passed before asking Soon-hee, “So besides the morphine, how do you feel?”

Soon-hee glanced at the board, then at me. After making her next move she shrugged lightly, wincing a bit as the movement tugged on the needles in her arm, “Sore. And itchy. I feel drowsy a lot, and my muscles feel weaker than they used to.”

“That’s from not having drugs pumped into you all the time,” Minami declared.

“Feels weird,” the young woman grumbled, “My brain isn’t in a fog anymore, and my senses are all… confused. I can feel my body in ways I haven’t in years. Stomach hurts a lot –they say I can’t eat a lot of solid food for another week. I tend to throw up if I eat or drink too much. Can’t sleep.”

“Nightmares?” I asked; she wasn’t the first person I knew with PTSD, after all.

Soon-hee nodded, “And I feel fidgety and anxious. From the withdrawal. Can’t close my eyes without seeing… things.”

I nodded, “My work partner’s wife used to get terrible nightmares. She still does, sometimes. That’ll get better with time, too,” I chuckled at the grumpy look that crossed Soon-hee’s face when I said that, “I imagine you’re getting tired of hearing that.”

Soon-hee nodded, “Tired of the cramps, too.”

“From the morphine?” I asked.

Soon-hee shook her head and pointedly did not look at me as she ate another piece of orange. A light flush seemed to color her face, and I coughed and looked up at the ceiling as I connected the dots.

Fortunately Minami piped in at that point, “Considering the malnutrition you’ve been subjected to, it’s actually good that your cycle is normal.”

Soon-hee watched as she lost another checker piece, “Doesn’t feel normal.”

“It will,” Minami declared.

The game went on, and it was pretty clear Officer Minami was, if not an excellent player, certainly knew what she was doing. No one spoke for a while, but, perhaps spurred on by her own internal musings, Soon-hee eventually looked at me and asked, “They still don’t know what to do with me, do they?”

“Depends,” I replied. Turning to Minami, I asked, “Any word on her family?”

“They’re dead,” Soon-hee declared, “Or they woulda come for me.”

I kept looking at Minami, who silently nodded.

Soon-hee watched Minami nod and muttered, “I’m alone.”

“I wouldn’t say that,” I said, “I’m here. Miho is here.”

Soon-hee fiddled with a piece of fruit as she mumbled, “Miho leaves when the cops don’t need me anymore.”

“I can visit, if you want,” Minami stated.

Soon-hee’s face quirked into a brief smirk as she said, “I’d like that.”

“There, see?” I said, “You are not alone. Not anymore. I’ll come ‘round every now and then as well, if you want.”

Soon-hee nodded, “I like being visited. It gets boring here in bed all day –they won’t let me go to the library yet. Hurts to walk.”

“If you tell me what you like, I can go for you,” Minami offered.

“Same here,” I stated, “I could ask some of my family, too –they might have used copies of things you’d like.”

Soon-hee glanced down at the board and poked at a captured checker piece, “You don’t have to. I’ve been enough of a bother to you as it is.”

“You are not a bother,” I declared, “You’re a good kid that got handed a shitty deal by a fucked-up world. I’ve dedicated my life to making the world a better place, and you are a part of that world.”

Soon-hee looked up at me, an odd expression on her face as she asked, “Why do you care so much about me?”

I sighed and rubbed the back of my head, thinking. Touchy-feely stuff was really more Hisao’s shtick than mine, but this kid had gotten to me, and I was already too involved to step back now. No, I was gonna see this through to the end, come hell or high water. And that meant being honest with the girl. Besides, prying the events of the Hunter’s attack out of her hadn’t been a pleasant thing to do, so I figured I owed her.

“I’ve seen and known a lot of people handed a raw deal,” I finally said, “orphans who were never adopted, kids who died before they could graduate college, family members losing their minds before my eyes. I couldn’t help them, but I can help you.”

If I was honest, there was also the thought that the young woman was alone with no one to help her besides the system. If something happened to me or Miya, Hisato had a family to look after him –Hisao was his godfather, and George was Akio’s, Satomi’s, and Refia’s. If something happened to any of us, someone would be there for the survivors.

I knew better than to say that to the girl, though; she’d probably take my interest as pity, which she’d likely resent. If I’m honest, I resented myself a bit for pitying her, but, seeing her frail form loaded with needles and pumped with chemicals, it was hard not to.

Dragging myself to the present, I watched as Soon-hee looked back down at the board, her eyes seemingly unfocused as she thought silently. After a moment she looked over to me and said, “Thank you, for caring so much.”

“Eh, it’s what I do,” I said, trying to put on a brave face, “’sides, you told me how you were doing, and that couldn’t a’ been easy, so figured I owed you.”

Soon-hee shrugged with the shoulder not covered in needles, “You listen. The Doctors and nurses pretend to listen, but I’m never sure if they really are listening. You really listen.”

“Side effect of being legally blind,” I quipped.

Soon-hee smirked at that, but said nothing, instead focusing on the game.

The checkers game continued on in silence for a while, Soon-hee steadily losing to the officer as her pieces were captured one after the other. Eventually the game reached its inevitable conclusion, and, with a sigh, Soon-hee moved her last piece to be taken.
Last edited by Hoitash on Thu Jan 02, 2014 6:24 pm, edited 10 times in total.
"Who are you, that do not know your history?" -Ulysses
Misha Time: United States of Misha Meet the Hakamichis
Awesome, served on the rocks: Hisao and Kenji- Master Detectives! (Check out the Archive for more!)
I wrote a book! Brythain edited it! If you like mystery and history please consider: A Sister's Habit
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Re: Picking up the Pieces- A H&K: MD Christmas Special

Post by Hoitash » Tue Nov 19, 2013 1:28 pm

Part II:

Minami looked from the board to the girl, smiling, “Good game. You’re really getting the hang of it. I might have to teach you chess if I get the chance.”

Minami packed up the board and pieces into a nearby box, which, judging by their worn state, were probably owned by the hospital. Minami stood up from the chair and placed the box on top of the desk.

“I’ll drop this off on my way to the library,” she remarked, “So you can tell me what to look for, okay?”

Soon-hee nodded, smiling lightly as she shifted onto her back.

There was a knock on the door and we all jumped as a young woman in a doctor’s coat with short black hair poked her head into the room, “Visiting hours are over, Sir. I’d offer to let you stay a bit, but I’d rather not upset the Head Nurse.”

“I could take her, but I’ll leave to save you the mess,” I stated. Standing up, I collected the trash from the snacks I brought and shoved it into the brown bag, which I placed in my briefcase before closing it.

Turning back to Soon-hee, I bowed lightly and said, “It was good to see you improving, Miss.”

Soon-hee seemed to look at me oddly as she settled into her new position. After a moment’s pause, she said, “…could you call me Soon-hee? Please?”

I grinned and nodded, “No problem.”

Another pause of thought before she spoke, this time asking, “You’ll visit again? Please?”

I nodded, “I said I would, so I will. Not sure, when, though, but I’ll be sure to let the hospital know, so they can tell you. I’ll bring more oranges, too. Or, since you might be up for it, another chocolate bar.”

Soon-hee smiled weakly as she nodded and said, “I’d like that. Thank you for visiting.”

“You’re welcome,” I said. Donning my hat and grabbing my case, I gave a departing nod to Officer Minami and left the hospital room.

The doctor was still standing by the door. When I closed it behind me, she asked, “Are you Setou Kenji?”

I nodded and quipped, “I see my reputation precedes me.”

“The lawyer from the Hakamichi Foundation said you might drop by,” the Doctor replied, “I’m Dr. Tainaka Umi, and Soon-hee is one of my patients.”

“I gathered that,” I said, “Can you tell me what’s wrong with her, physically and mentally?”

“Legally speaking, no,” Dr. Tainaka said, “but considering the circumstances, I see no reason not to. Soon-hee is currently experiencing withdrawal symptoms from the various drugs she was forced to take –heroin and ecstasy were the main ones, but there was also traces of codeine and methamphetamine- if they couldn’t afford her normal doses, they used cough medicine, is my guess. Whoever they had drugging her, they knew what they were doing, too –organ damage is minimal and likely non-permanent, though she shouldn’t take up smoking or drinking heavily as habits.”

“I’d be more worried about relapse,” I said, “Especially since she needs to be weaned.”

The Doctor sighed and nodded, “Those fuckwads really screwed her over. If they had found someone younger it woulda been easier for them to control her without drugs, but I guess there are only so many undocumented residents roaming around.”

I nodded, “I looked it up, and the paper trail on her family goes cold after her grandfather. Guess they stayed under the radar.”

“Probably out of fear,” Dr. Tainaka mused, “Or distrust, or paranoia, or who knows why? Either way, the drug use really fucks things up. If it weren’t for that, we’d have a better chance of placing her in foster care as an out-patient for therapy, but now we have to make sure she doesn’t relapse, and that’s gonna take long term care.”

“How badly have the drugs affected her?” I asked.

Dr. Tainaka sighed, “Besides exacerbating the malnutrition issues -her bone density is lower than normal and her BMI is completely outta whack- she’s suffering withdrawal symptoms including dry and itchy skin, fidgeting, anxiety, insomnia, constipation, headaches, she has trouble keeping solid food down, and then there’s the drowsiness from the morphine. Oh, and the withdrawal is exacerbating her PTSD.”

“Lovely,” I grumbled, “She mentioned the nightmares and being itchy, and the malnourishment is pretty obvious, but still…”

“It’s a long list of problems,” the Doctor agreed. After a moment she tilted her head at me and asked, “She mentioned the nightmares to you?”

I nodded, “She’s opened up to me a bit, I think- probably because of my last visit.”

“Really?” she asked. Dr. Tainaka glanced at her clipboard, musing, “She barely says anything to anyone else,” she looked back up at me, “She must trust you on a level she doesn’t trust us. Then again, you did get her to talk about the attack on the hideout mere hours after it occurred. I don’t think I’ve ever seen someone be so open so quickly after something like that…”

I shrugged, “I’m good with kids, and she is a kid, somewhere under all the trauma and abuse…. I guess I give her an outlet, since I don’t have a professional interest anymore.”

The Doctor looked thoughtful for a moment before slowly nodding, “You don’t want anything or have an agenda –or if you do you’re good at hiding it- and you’re here of your own volition now.”

“She was surprised I came back to visit,” I remarked, “Even though I said I would. Though obviously she’s going to have trust issues, particularly with men.”

“Obviously,” Dr. Tainaka stated, “Still, I was worried she lost the ability to trust... but that’s for her therapist to work on, when we can get her one.”

“How’s her mental state?” I asked, “Besides what we already covered, obviously.”

“Her mental state is, frankly, fucked up,” the Doctor declared, “The PTSD is probably her worst problem after the drugs -every loud noise or clanking sound makes her jump, and we had to mute the machines hooked up to her to keep her from panicking. You’re the first man I’ve ever seen able to even interact with her that didn’t make her panic, and she barely speaks to me, the nurses, or the officer. She also barely sleeps, and when she does she ends up waking up screaming.”

I nodded along with her responses, noticing that the more she explained to me, the older she seemed to appear. After slowly exhaling a long breath, she leaned against the wall, closing her eyes and looking in desperate need of a drink.

“…There’s so much work to be done, and so damn little I can do,” Dr. Tainaka lamented, “We can get her bone density up, get some meat on her bones, and even get her physical therapy and tutoring –she clearly had some education before she was kidnapped, so all we have to do is catch her up while we wean her. Her biggest hurdle is gonna be social acclimation, presuming she doesn’t end up an addict….”

Dr. Tainaka groaned and pinched the bridge of her nose. Soon-hee had obviously gotten to her, or maybe she was young enough that she still took her patient’s care personally. Or maybe she was trying to make up for being young and a woman in a professional field.

“You’re taking this case hard, it seems,” I remarked.

The bridge of her nose still firmly planted between her fingers, the Doctor replied, “No harder then I take any of my other patients… that came out wrong.”

Resisting the urge to smirk out of professional courtesy, I said, “I know what you meant. So what’re you gonna do about her?”

“What I can,” the Doctor replied, releasing her nose and turning to face me, “Which is get her bones stronger, her BMI normal, and make sure she can cope with the physical side of the withdrawal before she’s forced to face the mental side.”

“Makes sense, but what happens after that?” I asked, “You mentioned foster care wasn’t viable, so what does that leave?”

The Doctor sighed, “The psych ward. There are kids there her own age she can take classes with, they have the facilities and resources to handle her PTSD, and I’ll still be able to help wean her; give her some stability after… after what she’s been through.”

“Plus she’s under observation to help deal with the withdrawal,” I added.

Dr. Tainaka nodded, “Foster care is theoretically an option, but as her physician I’d recommend against it until she’s fully weaned and I can watch her leave here without constantly wondering if she’s going to relapse. She’s used to being drugged, and the stress of her new life could easily trigger her to start using. We could try cold turkey, of course, but medically that’s asking for trouble until her system has had a chance to flush itself, and that’ll take time. Besides, finding a home willing to take her in would be difficult, and who knows how long it would take?”

“Still,” I said, “the psych ward is kinda drastic.”

“I’d prefer it to here,” she retorted, “The psych ward can handle long term care of younger patients far more easily than we can. It also keeps her away from other users.”

“Fair enough,” I conceded, “Would she be placed in foster care when she’s fully weaned?”

The Doctor shrugged, “Maybe. Not my call at that point. She’d be seventeen or eighteen by then, so I’d say it’s up to her –she might be ready to pursue a college degree at that point, or an internship or something. I do know that the Foundation lawyer agree’d with my initial sentiments stating the psych ward was her best bet.”

I raised an eyebrow, “They wouldn’t agree to something like that lightly.”

“My guess is they put feelers out with Children Services that told them placing her would be a bitch and a half,” Dr. Tainaka said, “We, at least, have the room and the resources to help her. The Foundation’s also working on getting her residency and citizenship if they can pull it off.”

“Shouldn’t be too much of a problem,” I said, “Especially considering the people Hakamichi has working for her.”

Dr. Tainaka nodded, “It would be nice if something went smoothly with her life, especially now that she’s on a path back to the real world. Towards that end, I’d like to ask for your assistance.”

“You want me to keep visiting her?” I guessed.

The Doctor nodded, “If she’s talking to you, then it might help her acclimate better and faster, and help her recover faster. You and Officer Minami are the only people she has in the world-”

“A depressing thought if ever there was one,” I remarked.

“-And Minami most likely goes when the case goes cold,” the Doctor continued, “She needs something stable in her life, someone else to talk to and trust. Preferably someone not poking at her cobwebs or sticking a needle in her arm once a week, like I’m going to be doing once she can start physical therapy.”

“She needs a friend, in other words,” I stated, reminded of Hanako and her situation back in high school. What would have happened if she hadn’t met Lilly and Hisao? She was a stronger woman than most people knew, but still, without some sort of pillar of support… “Alright, I was plannin’ on seeing this through anyway.”

The Doctor smiled weakly, “Thank you. Excuse me, but I need to speak with her.”

“Good luck, and thanks for the info,” I said, tipping my hat in salute before heading for the elevator, once again worn down by my meeting with the young woman.

This time, though, I was more hopeful she had a chance at a future. I was also now legitimately involved with her wellbeing, so, even if I wanted to back out, I couldn’t. Which meant that with one case closed, a new one had opened up for me; perhaps my most difficult case ever.

+++
Next Chapter

I promise this is going in a good direction. Really, have I ever let you down before?

Stop looking at the screen like that and have some gorram faith.

Oh, my stepmother helped me with the technical side of Soon-hee’s situation. She’s a social worker, so I’m hoping her advice is sound. That said, I’m sure I’ll screw things up somewhere, so feedback is appreciated as always (I can practically hear Silentcook getting out his roasting spigot…)

Anyway, this’ll be another weekly special of mine, so hope you enjoy it. I’m looking forward to it from a technical standpoint to help my writing, at least.

Also, as I mentioned in the Halloween Special, Korean names place the family name first, just like Japanese. Since to me “Kim Soon-hee” flows better than “Soon-hee Kim” I’ve left the name order as normal. To avoid confusion, I’m also keeping the Japanese names with the family name first, rather than anglicizing it like I normally would.

Do not attempt to readjust your screen. Everything is fine, nothing is broken.
Last edited by Hoitash on Tue Nov 26, 2013 11:34 am, edited 1 time in total.
"Who are you, that do not know your history?" -Ulysses
Misha Time: United States of Misha Meet the Hakamichis
Awesome, served on the rocks: Hisao and Kenji- Master Detectives! (Check out the Archive for more!)
I wrote a book! Brythain edited it! If you like mystery and history please consider: A Sister's Habit
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Re: Picking up the Pieces- A H&K: MD Christmas Special

Post by dewelar » Tue Nov 19, 2013 1:59 pm

Hoitash wrote:I promise this is going in a good direction.
Indeed, I get that feeling already. I think I'm more excited to see this story than anything else I've seen appear on the board in my short tenure here.

No pressure or anything...
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Stuff I've written: Developments, a continuation of Lilly's (bad? neutral?) ending - COMPLETE!

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Re: Picking up the Pieces- A H&K: MD Christmas Special

Post by TheGoatman » Tue Nov 19, 2013 4:04 pm

Hoitash wrote:
Soon-hee stared at me as if I might vanish if she blinked, “You came back.”
Is that a reference I missed or a typo?
I'm just a rusty old goat and a poor writer by anyone's standards, so no need to take my advice to heart, and when you do, take a handful of salt with it.

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Re: Picking up the Pieces- A H&K: MD Christmas Special

Post by Hoitash » Tue Nov 19, 2013 4:11 pm

TheGoatman wrote:
Hoitash wrote:
Soon-hee stared at me as if I might vanish if she blinked, “You came back.”
Is that a reference I missed or a typo?
Not entirely sure; could you please elaborate?
"Who are you, that do not know your history?" -Ulysses
Misha Time: United States of Misha Meet the Hakamichis
Awesome, served on the rocks: Hisao and Kenji- Master Detectives! (Check out the Archive for more!)
I wrote a book! Brythain edited it! If you like mystery and history please consider: A Sister's Habit
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Re: Picking up the Pieces- A H&K: MD Christmas Special

Post by Mirage_GSM » Tue Nov 19, 2013 5:25 pm

Hoitash wrote:I promise this is going in a good direction.
It wouldn't be a suitable Christmas story if it didn't.
Nice to see you try out another genre for a change. (At least I don't expect there to be as much gunslinging in this one)
Emi > Misha > Hanako > Lilly > Rin > Shizune

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Re: Picking up the Pieces- A H&K: MD Christmas Special

Post by Hoitash » Tue Nov 19, 2013 5:34 pm

Mirage_GSM wrote: Nice to see you try out another genre for a change. (At least I don't expect there to be as much gunslinging in this one)
Thanks. I'd really like it if I were good at something, and while "insanely entertaining kook" is a good grabber for my business cards, I wouldn't mind expanding my horizons and talents.
"Who are you, that do not know your history?" -Ulysses
Misha Time: United States of Misha Meet the Hakamichis
Awesome, served on the rocks: Hisao and Kenji- Master Detectives! (Check out the Archive for more!)
I wrote a book! Brythain edited it! If you like mystery and history please consider: A Sister's Habit
"You are absolutely insane. And entertaining." -griffon8

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Re: Picking up the Pieces- A H&K: MD Christmas Special

Post by bhtooefr » Tue Nov 19, 2013 6:04 pm

A sixteen year old (read: high school age) girl that needs friends, needs to catch up with her education, and her primary ailments are physical (with a heavy side of PTSD)?

And she even reminds Kenji of Hanako?

And the Hakamichi family is already involved?

Why do I think she's not going to the psych ward?

I've liked this so far, BTW.
bhtooefr's one-shot and drabble thread
Enjoy The Silence - Sequel to All I Have (complete)
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Hoitash
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Re: Picking up the Pieces- A H&K: MD Christmas Special

Post by Hoitash » Tue Nov 19, 2013 6:15 pm

bhtooefr wrote:A sixteen year old (read: high school age) girl that needs friends, needs to catch up with her education, and her primary ailments are physical (with a heavy side of PTSD)?

And she even reminds Kenji of Hanako?

And the Hakamichi family is already involved?

Why do I think she's not going to the psych ward?

I've liked this so far, BTW.
Hmm...

Glad you liked it, and thanks for reading :)
Last edited by Hoitash on Tue Nov 19, 2013 7:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"Who are you, that do not know your history?" -Ulysses
Misha Time: United States of Misha Meet the Hakamichis
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Re: Picking up the Pieces- A H&K: MD Christmas Special

Post by Minion of Chaos » Tue Nov 19, 2013 7:42 pm

Always glad to see a new Hoitash fic! That being said, I'm glad you had deleted two of the comments (you know which one's I'm talking about), since I was screaming the exact same thing in my head.

Looking forward to this!

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Re: Picking up the Pieces- A H&K: MD Christmas Special

Post by Hoitash » Tue Nov 26, 2013 11:31 am

I’m glad that the response to this so far has been positive. Let’s see if that continues as we move on up to the metaphorical east side.

Previous Chapter

Chapter Two: The Left Wing


Subject: Kim Soon-hee

To Setou Kenji:

Regarding the matter of Miss Kim Soon-hee, our lawyers have finally battered down the last of the government’s resistance, and as of the day of this email, Kim Soon-hee is a legal resident of the State of Japan. We tried to get her citizenship, but they refused to grant that due to her “condition” and “extenuating circumstances”, as they called. That said, in five years, presuming all goes well, she shouldn’t have any trouble becoming a citizen. Well, besides the obvious.

Even if she won’t be able to work yet, we have set up a trust fund available for her once she is twenty years old, as well as another one to pay for her higher education. We received your donation and added it to her trust as well; I hope Miya knows how much you donated. The government will pay for everything else, including a small stipend for any daily expenses she might incur until she reaches the age of majority.

Since you’re going to just annoy the medical staff otherwise, Dr. Tainaka has agreed to keep you informed in a limited capacity regarding Kim’s medical situation. I doubt her therapist will extend the same courtesy, but little things like the law have never stopped you from doing what you felt was right.

On the subject of therapy, Kim is going to be discharged from the Rehab/Recovery Ward and transferred to the Psychiatric Ward as a long term patient. She’ll be released when she is deemed capable of functioning in society –the hospital’s words- and when they’re sure she doesn’t run a risk of relapsing into drug abuse. In other words, when she’s weaned and only needs out-patient therapy. How long that takes is largely up to her.

If I may get personal for a moment, your interest and dedication in this case is rather, well, odd. I’d expect it of Hisao, Hanako, or Lilly, but it being you is somewhat difficult for me to grasp. If you feel guilty for what happened because the Hunter was possibly after my father, don’t. Considering any one of us would be doing the same thing in your place, though, I really have no room to comment.

I know you won’t give up on this and are determined to “see it through”, but make sure you know when “it” is. You’re doing a good thing, as long as your motives are reasonable. Don’t get too involved, and make sure she keeps fighting and winning.

You are a good man, Kenji. If I had to choose one person to be this girl’s first new friend, well, I’d probably have chosen Hanako, but you’ll do.

Sincerely,
Hakamichi Shizune
President and Founder, Hakamichi Foundation

PS: Dad’s wounds are recovering nicely, and thank you.


“There’s a compliment in there somewhere,” I remarked. Glancing up from the laptop on my office desk, I asked, “Do you think I’m taking this too far?”

On the other side of the desk, Hisao, who was sitting in a chair and flipping through a book, shrugged, “Yes and no. Do I think it’s odd you’ve latched onto this girl? Yes. Did I expect you to just walk away and leave her to the wolves? Hell, no; any one of us would be doing what you’re doing.”

I nodded, “Yeah, I guess.”

Hisao sighed and put the book down, “If you’re still wondering why, I have a theory of my own I could toss out.”

I raised an eyebrow, “Go on.”

“You’re a Crusader without a Crusade,” he stated, “First, you obsessed over that feminist conspiracy crap. Then you threw yourself into the Ancient Conspiracy thing. When that finally died down, you focused on organized crime. Now, though, now you don’t have some massive thing to dismantle and fight in order to save the world. You’re not used to that. So, here’s something –or someone, rather- you can help and fight for, so you once again hurl yourself into the breach.”

“That… damn, that makes a lot of sense,” I declared. Glancing down at the laptop, I scratched my head and asked, “Do you think I’m too involved?”

Hisao shrugged, “That’s up to you. As long as it doesn’t get weird, interfere with work or your family, I’d say your fine.”

“Would you classify helping her move into her new room as weird?”

Hisao shook his head, “Nope, just you lending support. You’re about the only stable thing this girl has in her life right now, and she needs that. Just know the boundaries and stick to them.”

“Right,” I said. Hefting myself up and grabbing the large bag of stuff I had procured to help Soon-hee recover and acclimate to her new life, such as it was, I added, “Thanks, for the advice, and helping me shop.”

“No problem; one of the perks of being a high school teacher is knowing about teenagers before you have them yourself,” Hisao remarked.

“Fair enough,” I said, “I better go catch the bus.”

“Sure you don’t want a ride?” he asked.

I shook my head as I moved to grab my fedora, “Nah, I got this. Thanks, though.”

“Anytime,” Hisao replied, “and good luck.”

I nodded, and with that, departed the office to face the warm and lightly breezy September weather, and, eventually, the hospital.

After the bags were thoroughly searched before being approved and a rousing game of “hide from the crazy Head Nurse”, I was allowed to see Soon-hee in the rehab/recovery ward. Doctor Tainaka was coming along to help her move, and was waiting for me by the door to the girl’s room.

Officer Minami had been reassigned in early September when the case was declared cold –though she did visit once or twice a month. Still, for most of the last few weeks Soon-hee had been mostly alone. I visited twice a month, to try and keep some distance and because I had work and a family to contend with. I was worried the solitude would get to her, but she didn’t seem to mind it, and she had said during one of my visits she was looking forward to having a room to herself. Considering the luxury privacy had previously been for her, it was a minor miracle she wasn’t hermitting herself off as much as possible.

I greeted Dr. Tainaka at the door and gestured to it, raising an eyebrow. The Doctor nodded and lightly rapped on the door.

“Soon-hee,” Dr. Tainaka called through the door, “Kenji and I are here to help you move.”

“I’m ready!” she called.

The Doctor opened the door and stepped through. Giving a quick nod, I followed in after her, taking off my hat and holding it with my free hand.

“Hi,” Soon-hee said when we had entered the room, “How do I look?”

Because she was being transferred to long term psychiatric care, she was allowed to wear clothes instead of a patient’s gown. She had been really looking forward to that.

I took a step forward to get a better look. Standing in front of the side of her bed, she was wearing a pair of dark blue jeans and a long sleeved T-shirt, also dark blue. She was still pale and a bit on the scrawny side, but definitely looked healthier. The most striking change was that her hair had been cut down into an extremely short style.

“You got your hair cut,” I blurted.

Soon-hee nodded, “Yeah, it’s easier to swim with short hair… and it’s harder to pull…”

Soon-hee glanced down at the small plastic bag she was holding, obviously remembering something she’d rather not.

“Well I think it looks great,” Dr. Tainaka declared, “Although I’ve had to keep my hair short for years, so I’m probably a bit biased.”

Soon-hee looked up and smirked lightly at the Doctor, “Thanks. What do you think, Kenji?”

I shrugged, “Your hair, your decision. If you don’t like it, it’ll grow back.”

Soon-hee nodded, “Good point. Is there anything else I have to do before we go?”

Dr. Tainaka shook her head, “Nope, we’re good to go.”

Soon-hee grinned, “Great!” she declared, then walked out of the room, passed us, and into the hallway without looking back.

“She seems healthier,” I muttered to the Doctor as we stepped out back into the hall.

Dr. Tainaka nodded, “Her physical therapy has been going swimmingly.”

I rolled my eyes at the joke as the Doctor shut the door behind us- swimming was considered the best main exercise for her, and she enjoyed it, though they had to teach her how to swim first.

“Don’t quit your day job,” I remarked.

Dr. Tainaka chuckled, “I’ll keep that in mind. Her bone density and BMI are almost normal as well.”

“When can she start the martial arts training?” I asked; she’d been rather adamant about starting that ever since her physical therapist had brought it up.

“Two or three weeks,” the Doctor replied, “She should be up for it by then.”

Soon-hee was waiting for us just outside the hospital room door, her eyes fixed on us and away from the wandering nurses and meandering patients, all of whom seemed to bear an aura of gloom or weariness about them. I had sensed the Doctor’s own weariness on several occasions, and couldn’t help but wonder how long her youth would hold out. For that matter, I wasn’t getting any younger, either; I had a three year old son, after all, along with the gray hairs to prove it.

Soon-hee hadn’t seemed to have heard our hushed conversation, or perhaps she was already used to ignoring adults talking when it wasn’t to her. Either way we stepped over to her, leaving the old hospital room and starting the next phase in Soon-hee’s new life.
Last edited by Hoitash on Tue Nov 26, 2013 11:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"Who are you, that do not know your history?" -Ulysses
Misha Time: United States of Misha Meet the Hakamichis
Awesome, served on the rocks: Hisao and Kenji- Master Detectives! (Check out the Archive for more!)
I wrote a book! Brythain edited it! If you like mystery and history please consider: A Sister's Habit
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Re: Picking up the Pieces- A H&K: MD Christmas Special

Post by Hoitash » Tue Nov 26, 2013 11:31 am

Part II:

“The Psychiatric Ward is its own building,” Dr. Tainaka stated, “just down the sidewalk a bit.”

Soon-hee nodded, and the Doctor led the way to the elevators. On the way I thought I saw the Head Nurse glaring at me, but I didn’t feel like trying to get a better look. I didn’t hear anything to foretell her presence, so I might have just been imagining it.

We reached the elevator easily enough, and when Dr. Tainaka asked Soon-hee if she would like to push the button, she nodded and did so. After a few moments it dinged open. No one was inside, so we stepped in. Soon-hee looked up at the Doctor, who smiled and nodded. With a weak smile, the young woman hit the down button.

As we waited for the elevator to make its trip, Soon-hee shifted and shuffled slightly, which I attributed to anxiety rather than claustrophobia, as she had shown a preference for small spaces over the weeks. She had a penchant for hiding under her bed, be it because of tremors, storms, or nightmares.

The elevator dinged open a floor before the ground floor, so we all shuffled to the side a bit for the new occupant, who turned out to be an older looking nurse. No one spoke, so we just waited quietly until we reached the ground floor, the sounds of The Girl from Ipanema filling the otherwise nearly empty elevator.

“Kenji?” Soon-hee asked after a moment.

I looked down at the young woman and smiled reassuringly, “Yes?”

“…You didn’t go to too much effort to get the things I wanted, did you?” she asked.

I chuckled lightly, “Nah, it wasn’t any trouble.”

“Good,” Soon-hee said, “I was worried I was bothering you again.”

“You’re not a bother,” I declared. Still smiling, I quipped, “No matter how many times you apologize for it.”

The elevator dinged open and the nurse dashed off to whatever task or duty had required her to take the elevator rather than the stairs. We followed, stepping out of the elevator and onto the ground floor.

We moved through the hustle and bustle of the lobby as best we could –all the paperwork had already been taken care of- passing wandering nurses and attendants, people waiting for appointments, visitors dealing with the information clerk, and a janitor who I’m pretty sure spent all day mopping the same spot on the floor. Soon-hee retracted as best she could from the strangers, sidling closer to the Doctor as we walked.

“How’re you feeling?” I asked the young woman in an effort to distract her from the people. That question seemed to be my default one with her, but if it bothered her, she never said anything –not an altogether comforting thought.

Soon-hee shrugged as we moved towards the large glass double doors of the entrance, “Itchy. Sore. Queasy.”

“That last one’s the food,” Dr. Tainaka explained, “Just because you can eat solid food doesn’t make the food here taste any better.”

Soon-hee nodded.

“How’re you sleeping?” I pressed.

“Better. Slightly.”

I didn’t feel like following that up, so we left the building in silence, entering the outside world –or at least a glimpse of it- with only the sound of the hospital’s bustle behind us.

The weather was still reasonably warm, and it was pretty clear, too; the sun was bright enough to make me grateful for my hat. Soon-hee groaned and shielded her eyes with a hand, and Dr. Tainaka did the same, though she did so silently.

“Bright out today,” she remarked.

“Hurts,” Soon-hee grunted.

“We’ll make this quick, then. Give you a chance to stretch your legs some more.”

Soon-hee nodded, and Dr. Tainaka picked up her pace slightly, forcing the girl to speed up as well if she wanted her human shield. I kept a step or two behind, mostly to give me the few extra precious seconds I needed to gain the resolve to deal with what lay ahead.

You can probably guess that I’ve had my fill of psychiatric wards, though not for the reasons you might be thinking. For me, they’re a place I would like to avoid more than the hospital. My dislike for hospitals is abstract and philosophically based. My disdain for the psych ward, that was personal. Seeing someone die in body is one thing, but seeing someone’s mind die, that’s a very different and unpleasant experience, one that takes time and makes you question what it even means to be human. An experience I’ve witnessed far too many times in my life.

I’d rather fight a squad of Hunters than watch another person mentally waste away in front of me. So I’m not ashamed to admit the only reason I was even willing to set foot in psych ward again was because it was for Soon-hee. Another reason to keep back a little; keeping the other two from seeing the various expressions of consternation that were no doubt creasing my face as they raced through my thoughts.

The trek was a short one, which at least prevented my mind wandering too far. The hospital’s lawn was well cared for and bordered by small plots for flowers and small shrubs, and as we walked we passed or were passed by staff and visitors going about their routines. Soon-hee kept her eyes on the sidewalk as we moved, keeping close to Dr. Tainaka the entire time. After a few minutes of walking we made a left turn toward a building that looked similar to every other building in the complex; white and gray and built to be sturdy and functional. Fewer people were walking outside near that building, and fewer people were walking into or out of it as well. I knew from experience it was our destination.

We entered the psychiatric ward easily enough, and we all paused for a moment to examine the front lobby. The despair of the place was palpable as visitors and more mildly afflicted patients milled about in stiff chairs or spoke to the receptionist. Medical staff wandered to and fro, some helping a mumbling patient to some unseen destination. The medical staff’s cheerful personas seemed all the more overpowering in comparison to the depression that surrounded them; the subdued movements and speech of the visitors, the ramblings or weary silence of the patients. It was almost too much to endure.

To try and stave off the pall of despair, the building was practically overloaded with bright and cheerful décor. Curtains in garish colors, paintings and posters all over the walls, and lighting that was almost blinding in its brightness all fought to fight off the despair of dying minds that filled the ward.

Despair or no, this place was the best shot Soon-hee had of recovering enough to enter the wider world and strike out on her own. Even if she spent her days in some shitty apartment, only going outside for food and maybe work, at least she’d be over the pains of her past. Of course, we hoped for a lot better than that for her future, but as you might have picked up, I tend to be a bit of a pessimist; something that continually exasperates my optimist wife.

“Well, here it is,” Dr. Tainaka said, in an effort to ease the tension that had seeped into us once we were inside, “Kenji needs to sign in, so while he does that, we can go over the paperwork really quick to make sure everything’s in order.”

“Okay,” Soon-hee said.

Signing in didn’t take very long –making an exception to my dislike of leaving a paper trail for the girl’s sake- and by the time I was done, Soon-hee and the Doctor had been joined by a middle-aged woman in a suit with short green hair. When she noticed me approaching she smiled and bowed lightly.

“Mr. Setou,” the woman said, “I’m Sorami Honoka, the therapist assigned to Miss Kim.”

I stuck out my hand, which she shook lightly, “I gathered that. Gonna show us the room, I take it?”

Sorami nodded, “It’s on the third floor, which is our Teenage and Young Adult Floor.”

“Paperwork’s in order,” Dr. Tainaka declared, “So you can lead the way, Doctor.”

Dr. Sorami nodded, “The elevators are just down the left hall a bit, and please, just call me Miss –being called Doctor makes me feel old.”

Miss Sorami turned to face the mentioned hall and, after a brief gesture, started walking, and the rest of us followed her into the hall.

If Soon-hee was anxious about the new woman, it was buried under her general anxiety at being out and about. She relaxed a bit when we walked a few paces into the hallway, where Miss Sorami was waiting by the elevator, which was pretty close the main lobby.

Miss Sorami pushed the up button and stepped to the side, in case anyone had to get off at the ground floor. Dr. Tainaka stepped next to her, Soon-hee behind her, and me a pace or two behind them. The hallway was slightly more functional and less garish than the entrance, but not by much. To make up for the lack of windows, the walls were painted green, and it was just as brightly lit as the front of the building had been.

I shifted the bag in my hand to the other hand, more to have something to do then because the weight was getting to me. After a moment the elevator dinged open. No one came out, so we all filed in, me taking my hat off as I did so. Miss Sorami pushed the button for the third floor, and, after a few more moments, the elevator closed and lurched upward with a metallic groan.

Soon-hee flinched at the sound and tensed up. As the ride smoothed out, however, she took a deep breath and slowly relaxed back to her previously anxious state.

“I keep telling maintenance to fix this thing,” The Therapist grumbled, “but do they listen?”

Dr. Tainaka leaned back to whisper to me, “They don’t like to come here –they think the place is haunted.”

“You sure this is the best place for her?” I whispered back.

Dr. Tainaka bit her lower lip and didn’t say anything.

To help assuage her fears, I smiled and said, “I brought something that should help, so try and relax.”

“I can relax when I’m dead.”
"Who are you, that do not know your history?" -Ulysses
Misha Time: United States of Misha Meet the Hakamichis
Awesome, served on the rocks: Hisao and Kenji- Master Detectives! (Check out the Archive for more!)
I wrote a book! Brythain edited it! If you like mystery and history please consider: A Sister's Habit
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Re: Picking up the Pieces- A H&K: MD Christmas Special

Post by Hoitash » Tue Nov 26, 2013 11:32 am

Part III:

I refrained from rolling my eyes and leaned back as the elevator dinged open. Considering how much effort Miya and I put into our work, I couldn’t really fault her logic.

Miss Sorami stepped out of the hall and led us to the right side. Following her, I quickly noticed the difference in the hall’s layout, both compared to the previous hospital building and the ground floor of the psych ward.

While still wide to accommodate gurneys and wheelchairs, the halls were built to look more… homey. The walls were painted a more muted green than the ground floor, the lighting was more traditional in its brightness, and the layout was obviously designed to look as least like a hospital as possible. Whoever had designed the psych ward knew what they were doing.

The halls were much less crowded than the previous building, too. The only people I saw in the hall was a nurse and doctor on the far end walking with a young man down another hall.

Miss Sorami stopped at the third door on the right, which had a small nameplate on the wall next to the simple wooden door. The door had a peep-hole and an old fashioned key lock.

“Here we are,” Miss Sorami declared. She reached into her pocket and pulled out a small key ring with four old fashioned brass keys; apparently updating the psych ward wasn’t a priority for maintenance, either, “The On-Duty Guard, myself, and the senior nurse on duty are the only people other than you, Miss Kim, who have a key to this room. We can only enter it with your permission, barring some sort of emergency, medical or otherwise. Understand?”

Soon-hee glanced up at the woman and nodded. Miss Sorami shifted two keys off of the ring. She pocketed one herself, and held the other out for the girl. Soon-hee slowly raised a hand to accept the ring, and carefully took it from the Therapist’s proffered hand.

“Thank you,” Soon-hee mumbled as she pocketed the key.

“This room is your home for now,” Miss Sorami stated, “So we’re going to treat it as such. Which means you best keep it clean, or the nurses will have a fit.”

Soon-hee nodded, “Yes, ma’am.”

Miss Sorami smirked, “Miss Sorami’ll do. Anyway, it’s your room, so why don’t you open it?”

Soon-hee nodded and gingerly unlocked the door. It gave a muted click and easily yielded to the young woman’s light push. Watching the door slowly open, she looked up at Miss Sorami, who smiled and nodded. Soon-hee glanced to the open door and leaned forward. Groping along the inside of the wall, she flicked the light switch on and stepped inside. Miss Sorami waited a few moments before gesturing us to follow. She was the first of us to enter, then Dr. Tainaka, then myself.

Appraising the room as best I could, I was relieved to see that it looked much more like a dormitory room than a hospital room. A plastic-looking desk was bolted to the floor along the left wall, with a matching chair that looked free from the floor. A bed was near the far wall to the right, opposite a small open closet which already had clothes hanging up inside it. A door to a bathroom was also on the right, along with a small solid metal bookshelf –also bolted to the floor- that was between that door and the bed, which was low enough to the floor that I doubted anyone could squeeze under it.

Soon-hee was gaping at the room, taking it all in and pivoting on the spot as she did so. After over a minute of just silently pivoting in place, she looked up at Miss Sorami and quietly asked, “This… all of this is my room? Just mine?”

Miss Sorami smiled again and nodded. I was starting to wonder if her cheerful demeanor was forced or not; either way it seemed to be doing the trick as far as Soon-hee was concerned.

Dr. Tainaka turned to me and said, “We should probably let her get settled in, so why don’t you unload that bag of yours before we go? It looks heavy.”

I shrugged and placed the bag on the table. Actually it had been pretty damn heavy, but I wasn’t gonna complain about it. Soon-hee moved over next to me, and I started unloading the bag, stating what each item was as I pulled it out and placed it on the desk.

“Let’s see,” I said as I rummaged through the bag, “I got those The Devil is a Part-Timer! light novels, the manga volumes you asked for, some chocolate bars –don’t eat them all at once- a small picture frame –plastic body and pane- a history book on Korea, some study guides for science, math, English, and history…”

“You didn’t have to get all that,” Soon-hee mumbled.

I glanced at the young woman and grinned, “The study guides come highly recommended from two high school teachers; I couldn’t resist getting them. I also figured you might want some recreational reading that was a bit more stimulating, so along with the history book you asked for, I got you… this.”

I revealed a very bulky hardcover book and handed it to Soon-hee, who wasn’t expecting the weight of it and fumbled for a moment to secure it in her hands. Glancing at the illustrated cover and writing, she looked up and asked, “Is it… in English?”

I nodded, “Something for you to aspire to if your English skills are up for it.”

Dr. Tainaka, who was behind and to my left, looked at the hefty book for a second before raising an eyebrow at me, “That’s an… odd choice.”

“I have eclectic taste,” I stated. Reaching into the nearly empty bag, I continued, “I got you something else extra, too. I figured you could use all the protection you can get. So, I present to you, an official Ghost and Demon Warding Device.”

I pulled the mentioned item out of the bag and handed it to Soon-hee. She carefully placed the bulky book on the desk to take and examine the new item.

“…It’s a night light,” she stated.

I smirked down at her, “Maybe, to the untrained eye, but as the primary ghost expert in the room, I can assure you that it is much more than that. As long as you have this light, you won’t have to worry about any ghosts.”

Soon-hee spent a few silent moments ogling the night light, then smiled and bowed deeply, “Thank you so much, and I’m sorry you went to so much trouble for me.”

“No trouble,” I said, “You got a new place, may as well make the most of it.”

Still clutching the night light, Soon-hee turned around her to face Miss Sorami, “Can I please keep this?”

Miss Sorami smiled and nodded, “Of course.”

Soon-hee smiled and carefully placed the light on the desk.

Grabbing the now empty bag, I donned my hat and said, “I better head home and give you a chance to settle in. I’ll be by in a couple weeks, okay?”

Soon-hee nodded and bowed again, “Thank you, for everything.”

Smiling, I stated, “You’re very welcome.”

Tipping my hat to the other two women, I left Soon-hee’s new home and made my way out of the psych ward. Perhaps it was just the lingering effects of Soon-hee’s smile from when I had given her the night light, but the ward seemed a little less depressing on the way out.

+++
Next Chapter

One of the things I felt like doing with this story was delving a bit into Kenji’s past. Something I plan to do later on, as well. I’m obviously also showing his more paternal side, so what we have here is Kenji Setou, Family Man and not Kenji Setou, Baddass Extraordinaire.

Oh, and as we get closer to Christmas, the story will more reflect that. Would be a bit odd otherwise, I think.
Last edited by Hoitash on Tue Dec 03, 2013 12:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"Who are you, that do not know your history?" -Ulysses
Misha Time: United States of Misha Meet the Hakamichis
Awesome, served on the rocks: Hisao and Kenji- Master Detectives! (Check out the Archive for more!)
I wrote a book! Brythain edited it! If you like mystery and history please consider: A Sister's Habit
"You are absolutely insane. And entertaining." -griffon8

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Re: Picking up the Pieces- A H&K: MD Christmas Special

Post by SpcPotshot » Tue Nov 26, 2013 3:10 pm

Hoitash wrote: I also figured you might want some recreational reading that was a bit more stimulating, so along with the history book you asked for, I got you… this.”

I revealed a very bulky hardcover book and handed it to Soon-hee, who wasn’t expecting the weight of it and fumbled for a moment to secure it in her hands. Glancing at the illustrated cover and writing, she looked up and asked, “Is it… in English?”

I nodded, “Something for you to aspire to if your English skills are up for it.”

Dr. Tainaka, who was behind and to my left, looked at the hefty book for a second before raising an eyebrow at me, “That’s an… odd choice.”

“I have eclectic taste,” I stated..
At first, I thought Kenji might have given the gift of the HERO OF THE IMPERIUM! Then I remembered the Cain books are paperback. Sadness.

Anyway, good new addition, more warm and fuzzies for the holidays. I shall add this to the trope page when I awake from my food coma....

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Re: Picking up the Pieces- A H&K: MD Christmas Special

Post by Hoitash » Tue Nov 26, 2013 5:24 pm

SpcPotshot wrote: At first, I thought Kenji might have given the gift of the HERO OF THE IMPERIUM! Then I remembered the Cain books are paperback. Sadness.
Unfortunately I doubt Soon-hee would appreciate any work of fiction involving aliens and large guns.

How much she would appreciate a story involving a whale in a language she probably doesn't know very well, well...
Anyway, good new addition, more warm and fuzzies for the holidays. I shall add this to the trope page when I awake from my food coma....
Thanks, although I feel compelled to warn all y'all, your gonna have to fight for the fuzzies with this one.

Mmm, food...
"Who are you, that do not know your history?" -Ulysses
Misha Time: United States of Misha Meet the Hakamichis
Awesome, served on the rocks: Hisao and Kenji- Master Detectives! (Check out the Archive for more!)
I wrote a book! Brythain edited it! If you like mystery and history please consider: A Sister's Habit
"You are absolutely insane. And entertaining." -griffon8

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