2007-11-21: And Getting Better


Niki_icon.gif Micah_icon.gif

Summary: Mother and son spend some time together with only a minor glitch.

Date It Happened: November 21st, 2007

And Getting Better

Sanders-Dawson Residence

Queens, New York

Reasons to smile so brightly in excess of several seconds have been few and far between as of late, but things are looking up. It's a cozy night in for Niki and Micah; the other residents of the sometimes full house are elsewhere, no doubt gone their separate ways to magnetize back to the home later. It hasn't been that way for long — Niki only got in recently, so recently that's only just now peeling out of her winter jacket in the kitchen.

No need to worry about dinner, as is evident by the pizza boxes on the kitchen table. And no ATMs where harmed in the procurement of said dinner. There's still quite a bit left too. Micah is nowhere to be seen at first, but the sound of the door and subsequent shedding of coat causes his head to pop up over the top of the couch. Much like a prairie dog would. "Hi mom!" he says, clicking pause on the remote and stopping the movie on the screen. Tonight's Feature Presentation - The Terminator Trilogy.

Draping her jacket leisurely over the back of a kitchen chair, but leaving the long, black cable-knit scarf that matches it looped around her neck, Niki then leeeeans over the chair to reach one of the pizza boxes. Swiping a slice, she heads for the couch — and suddenly appears beside Micah as Unexpected Mom, having slid spryly over the back of the couch onto the cushion. "Hey, you."

Micah can't help but giggle as his mom appears suddenly, and in an unexpected fashion. "You didn't take the last piece of the pepperoni did you?" he asks, glancing at the slice. The movie remains pause for the time being as he reaches over toward the coffee table and picks up a six-pack of soda. Well, what remains of it anyhow. He's probably had enough caffeine to keep NYC awake all night. "Want one?"

"Mmhmm," Niki answers, matter-of-factly, while taking a bite of the pizza. "And there's nothing you can do about it!" she taunts in good spirits. Lifting both brows at the array of soda, she shakes her head, but adds, "You're gonna be up all night. I actually wanna sleep."

"Oh yes there is." Micah says, making a mock-attempt at stealing a bite from the slice. The one—pack-which-used-to-be-six is set back down on the table. "That's ok. I got movies." He points to a stack of about 6 assorted sci-fi movies. "And…I got the latest sequel to Zombie Fright Night. It's supposed to be way more fun than the last two." Seems someone's been on the loose with a Blockbuster card.

"Hey! Niki laughs and, in turn, exaggeratedly leans away from Micah's mock-attempts at pizza theft, smiling widely all the while. "I take it you went to the video store," she says, using her … excellent skills of logic. "Where is everyone? I'm sorry I was a little late."

"How'd you guess?" Micah grins, leaning back into the plushness of the couch. "Monica took me. Said she had some studying to do and since I had all my homework done she figured this would keep me occupied." He doesn't mention exactly where she's at. But the house is still standing isn't it? "It's ok. We managed."

"The meeting ran long." 'Meeting' could mean any number of things, but in this case, Niki happens to be referring to the counselling meetings the courts are forcing her to go to. She pulls her feet up onto the couch, knees up to her chest, and leans back. "You should ask Monica to show you around NYU some day."

"I figured something like that happened." Micah responds, taking a swig from the nearly empty soda can in front of him. "That might be fun!" he grins, leaning to give him mom a hug. "I hear they have a group of people that have mock lightsaber battles."

The slice of pizza pauses halfway to its destination, and Niki quirks Micah a funny look as she wraps an arm over his shoulders. "I was thinking more along the lines of checking out what university classes are like. And y'know, learning…" All the same, she can't help but smile. "But I guess that's cool too."

Doesn't Micah get enough of boring school work in public school? "I suppose I could look at classes too. Though…" he pauses briefly to take a bit of his own cold slice sitting nearby. "…don't you think I have a little while before I should start thinking about college?" Even though with his intellect he could probably be there already.

"Sure, you gotta tackle high school first," Niki says. "But, I thought you might find it interesting. They have a whole Computer Science department." She stretches a foot out onto the edge of the coffee table.

Now there's something to perk Micah's interest. "That….could be fun." he states, a wide grin appearing on his face. In reference to the computers, of course. "So, what are we doing tomorrow? It's Saturday, you know." Hint Hint. Comic Book Store. Hint Hint.

Tossing a pizza crust with some of Micah's remnants on the coffee table, Niki answers, "I dunno, I thought maybe we'd stay home and do nothing all day." The good-natured, mischievous smile that plays on her lips suggests that she gets the hint, though. It begins fades into a more serious expression mere seconds later — slowly, as if reluctant to interrupt the light-hearted mood. She glances away from Micah for a second, down, before levelling on the boy. "I was actually thinking we could visit your dad."

At mention of his father, Micah falls silent for a moment. It wasn't easy for him to accept that his dad wouldn't just walk through the cell walls and return home. No. It wasn't. "Yeah, we can do that for sure. First thing." he answers, doing his best to sound optimistic about it. He actually is happy to go see his dad. Just the circumstances are hard to accept.

"I bet he misses you." Niki, too, is doing her best to sound optimistic; her words are bittersweet, in the end. But gives Micah a smile that's both warm and knowing, understanding of what he must be thinking. She edges off the couch and gets to her feet, takes the tasselled end of the scarf that she still wears swipes it playfully at Micah's face. "Be right back, bud. I'm going to get a drink." Of water! She heads for the adjacent kitchen.

Micah knows his dad misses him. The feeling is mutual. But this time there didn't seem like anything Micah could say to convince his father to come home. The warm smile is returned, along with a giggle as the tassel tickles his face. "Hehe….okay." Settling back into the couch, he takes advantage of the absent mom to catch a bit more of his movie.

At first, the clatter of glasses drifts from the kitchen, the familiar noise of the fridge opening and closing. Micah will be able to watch a good bit of his movie, however, because his mother seems to be taking an awfully long time to pour a glass of water.

It's a glass of water. Couldn't be all that hard. Still, Micah manages to get a bit further into his movie that should normally be allowed by such a simple task. He gives it a moment longer before pausing the flick and looking back over the couch. "Mom? You okay?"

Niki's scarf dangles over the chair where she left her coat earlier, and a full glass of water sits on the counter, collecting droplets of condensation. It's not hard to see straight into the kitchen, flowing from the living room — the blonde herself stands halfway between the counter and the table like a doll that's been posed mid-step. She doesn't move until Micah calls out, looking around the kitchen with an almost wary demeanour — particularly at the digital clock on the microwave behind her — before answering, "I'm okay." She heads back toward Micah, leaving behind the glass of water she intended to get in the first place.

Micah only barely catches the pause in movement. Not even enough for him to be sure if what he saw actually happened. "I thought you were getting a glass of water?" he asks, noting that when she starts back towards him she's minus said glass of water.

"I was?" Niki's short trek back to the couch is waylaid as she glances over her shoulder and back to Micah, cautious confusion etched into her features. Memory lapses: never good. She was only in the kitchen a few minutes — and everything's the same as it was before. Right? "Micah, how long was I in the kitchen?" she asks, knowing, as she says it, that it's a strange and undoubtedly unnerving question to ask her son; it's asked all the same with an underlying tone of urgency.

"Ummm…" Micah pauses his train of thought. "About twenty minutes." he answers, having to give it a moment of thought. After all, he just figured she wasdoing other things while in there. But the tone of her question makes him think otherwise. "Why?"

"I just … got distracted." Niki throws another look back into the kitchen, this one longer and more criticizing - what's out of place that wasn't there when she came home? There are suds of soap in the sink, plates drying on the rack… "By the dishes," she ventures a guess. Winding back around the couch and sinking into the cushion she claimed before, she draws her knees back to her chest and offers Micah a warm smile. "I've been a space case all week. Don't worry about it."

Micah quirks up an eyebrow at the excuse. He hadn't heard any dishes rattling during the time she was gone. But then again, he might have just been too into his movie. A concerned gaze follows his mom as she makes her way back. "Yeah." he grins, trying to be as upbeat as he can. "I've noticed. And I have to worry, mom. With Monica doing her school thing, you having these weird moments, and Dad…..someone has to watch out for all of us." Even if that means him.

Niki smiles and reaches over to smooth a hand over the boy's head with its multitude of dark curls. There's a hint of sadness in her smile — she wishes Micah didn't think he has to be the one to watch over them all. "Sometimes I think you're the one with super strength," she assesses in fond wonder. "I know it's tough with your dad being gone again, but— things'll be better now."

Leaning his head into the hand, Micah's lips curl up into a small smile. And don't think you're gonna straighten out them curls because they are out in force. "Nah. You're the one with that. I just think of creative ways to fix problems when they come up." It's true enough. Give him a situation, he'll find a way out of it. He leans in to give his mom a hug. "I know it will. It's like they say all the time. Things get worse before they get better. I'd like to think we're past the worse and getting better."

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