2010-05-07: The Mark We Make



Date: May 7th, 2010


I just wanted to let you know…

"The Mark We Make"

NYPD Bullpen

The first one's easy; just a few sentences dashed out on a piece of paper that is then popped into the mail. The second one… gives more pause.

As the hour strikes, signifying the moment Detective Maggie Powers is likely wondering where he is, Laurence Miles is no where near this funeral destination. Rather, he is standing over her desk with his nose pinched between two fingers as he crumples and disposes of the third piece of wasted paper. A few fellow officers are around, but none of them taking particular interest in a known to be outlandish behavioral consultant as he paces between two desks, gesturing once in a while as though he were holding a conversation with someone just out of sight.

There is no repose for Laurie, even as he directs himself finally to sit at the edge of his office chair, at his desk — his… for the next fifteen minutes before a scheduled cab arrives to take him, for all appearances sake — away. To the FBI jet. To an airport. Anywhere but here; it's not like the drones standing around the bullpen care once he's passed over that threshold and out of their hair. They'll wonder that no more colorful messages are written on the crime boards, glad but not curious why the vending machines are no longer always out of Snickers… they'll breathe a sigh of relief.

A glance to the chief's office door is passingly bitter, shifting to the energized thoughtfulness that's been fueling this entire situation. What mark does a person make on this world… and how unforgiving is it that this mark will stay forever etched under his skin.

As though on cue, a stinging causes him to reflexively stop himself from reacting to the pain, his body remaining still and steady as he sways idly back and forth in the office chair like he hasn't a concern in the world. The usual spasm follows, a tightening against his lung that makes it harder to breathe: so he just doesn't.

When he finds it in him to inhale, his gaze has wandered to the desk across from him. Detective Maggie Powers' desk. It sits empty, awaiting a piece of paper he's crumpled minutes ago. Irritation building, Laurie represses the need to launch the green stapler in front of him across the room; instead, he rapidly attaches several files together in a string and then applies a few staples to a handful of rubber bands nearby and then one last one to the cuff of his dress-shirt. The stapler rolls off his dismissive palm with a *thunk* onto the desk again.

Bringing materials closer to him, he begins to absently fold them instead of apply pen. A dip here, crease there. Eventually the scissors are brought into the works and he has to lean forward inch after inch, squinting at a sight that used to be clear as day but has, some recent years now, begun to get blurrier. It's just one of those things that happens… he just didn't think it would happen to him.

See, people get old. But certain men never live to see it.

A sigh; he's tired. The miniature creation is done without him really knowing or caring and an sweep of his hand casts it aside. There again, Detective Maggie Powers' desk. Rebellion streaks through his mind, the passing, flaring idea to stroll on over to the FBI and show them the same finger he was giving them when he retired all that time ago.

But there's a voice in his head. It says quite distinctly in a tone as familiar as his own: The pretty blonde…

Now he knows what he has to do. He probably always knew…

He knows what he has to write, too, and does so with a neat left-handed script entirely different from that with his right-hand. The note is slid across the way, planted against the keyboard. After a second, Laurie picks up the newest paper monument — Thailand's Ancient City — and sets it on top.

And then he picks up his things and he leaves. Because: you're never really out, you only put it off for a little while.

TO: Doctor Sydney Falkland
AT: Hope Hearth

»Doctor Sydney Falkland,

As much as I hate to be the bearer of bad news, I'm compelled to tell you that you're a perfectly acceptable therapist. As you surmised, I acted purposefully to provoke you, and I'm proud to say you took it with just not enough grace to still be interesting. Since I'm off to be an unrepentant ass to the FBI shrinks instead, I felt I should leave you with something.

You wanted to know what my job was, when I was undercover.

The answer: to stop bad things from happening. Whatever you do during, it's just what was necessary to complete the job.

So, what do you think, shrink? Do you think I really believe that?

Be well and spontaneous, Doctor Sydney Falkland. If you still decide to pursue your prison plans, give those inmates hell not for me, but for yourself. And remember, every abuse ought to be reformed, unless the reform is more dangerous than the abuse itself.

And at any price, etc, etc.

Laurence Miles

And on the desk of Detective Maggie Powers…

We are none of us alone
Even as we exhale it is inhaled by others
The light that shines upon me shines upon my neighbor as well
In this way everything is connected to everything else
In this way I am connected to my friend even as I am connected to my enemy
In this way there is no difference between me and my friend
In this way there is no difference between me and my enemy
We are none of us alone

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