2010-08-11: Walls Don't Have Feelings



Date: August 11, 2010


…people do.

"Walls Don't Have Feelings"

Lizzie and Sydney's Townhouse

The drapes are drawn on the townhouse time forgot, the door is locked, and Sydney flips through a magazine while sitting on her couch with her feet propped up on a table. On the plus side, she's dressed more appropriately for the weather. Her cap-sleeved purple sundress would be perfect if it wasn't for the jeans she wears underneath it and the sweater she's wearing over it.

Quietly she sips at a glass of water that sits on the coffee table in front of her. Her fingers tap at the pictures that she folds throughout this edition of PEOPLE magazine.

"She manages to get photographed a lot!" she calls to her roommate as she folds yet another picture of the Hallis-imposter in half. Her eyebrows furrow at one particular page before murmuring, "That's so sad…"

Having gotten back to work, being allowed to return to the community centre as one of the few therapists there (they were kind enough to keep his office in tact), Fred is falling back on his feet, so to speak. It'll take some time, no doubt, but he'll get there. As, hopefully, everyone involved shall. Today, Fred Flint Stone is on a mission. A mission to visit a very dear friend. His car parked a few blocks away, he slowly, tentatively walks his way up to the building in which Sydney resides.

As Fred approaches the townhouse, he makes note of the dying or dead grass on the lawn and all the chipping paint. He doesn't make comment about it, though; not even to himself. Slowly he approaches the stoop. Opening up the screen door, paying no mind to it's creaking noises, he knocks on the door casually.

Lizzie's been busy in the kitchen.

When the knock comes to the door, she lifts her head quickly and hits it on a pipe underneath the sink with a small clang. "Ow jesus… ow… son of a … ow.. ow…" She does this as quietly as possible as to not bother her extremely jumpy room mate, but when she slides out from inside the cupboard, there's a small red spot on her forehead. She rubs at it while she plods to the door, not stopping until she has to reach for the knob.

When the door is opened, Fred might find a miniature version of a real live human being standing in front of him. Looking up, Lizzie's eyebrows twitch together a little and she wipes her dirty little hands off on the bottom of her t-shirt before stepping out onto the stoop and closing the door behind her.

"Can I help you?" Her question comes with a suspicious sort of air to it, it is only heightened by the tilt of her head and the squinting of only one eye. "I paid all the bills, so if you're a bill collector, the check's in the mail."

"The saddest part of losing your life, other than your family, was losing all of those beautiful shoes," Sydney murmurs as she tilts her head at the cute Prada Mary Jane pumps before ripping this page from the magazine. "We'll just have to buy some more, Lizzie," she whispers, not really expecting her roommate to hear her.

An eyebrow is arched at the open door, as she tenses a little. Bill collector's shouldn't come to the house, it's not as if the pair of women have bills they can't afford. And then, remembering something, she opens one of her drawers and peers inside.

Fred furrows his brow. "Bill collec…." He looks down at the suit and tie that he's wearing. "Ooooooooh! No! No. Sorry. I'm not a bill collector. This is just how I usually dress." He chuckles nervously. He tilts his head, and stares intently at Lizzie. "Hey…don't I know you from somewhere? You look REALLY familiar." He shakes his head, however. "I'm sorry. I probably have the wrong place. I'm looking for Sydney Falkland. I thought I had the right address…but I guess it was wrong. Sorry to disturb you." With that he turns and starts to walk away.

Narrowing her eyes a little as Fred speaks, she doesn't say a word as he turns to walk away. She even folds her arms over her chest and tries to strike an aggressive pose as he speaks. She remembers him, she remembers him very well as the doctor that treated her while she was in the psych ward. That is, he treated Hallis…

She lets him get to almost the end of the walkway before she clears her throat and raises her chin to call out to him. "What do you want with her?" She's not admitting that the woman lives here, she's not saying she doesn't. Not yet anyway. "I can probably get a message to her Doctor St— … Er, I mean sir. That is, if you're really not a bill collector."

Fred turns around as Lizzie speaks again. "I wanted to check in on her. I wanted to see her, make sure she was alright." He says with a tiny smile. He furrows his brow. "How did you know I was a doc…RIGHT! I remember you! Hallis Van Cortlandt! You were a patient of mine. An actress to boot. Quite a good one as I understand it." He says with a soft smile. "I'm glad to see you out of the hospital." His words sound sincere enough. He sighs. "If you could tell Syd that Fred Stone came to see her, that would be great."

He was the one that called it, not her. A little twitch of an eyebrow is all it takes for Lizzie's face to contort into a messof confusion. "I don't know who you're talking about, my name is Lizzie." Denial isn't just a river in Egypt, it's a state that Lizzie's going to take to the grave should she be stuck with Sierra keeping her life forever. "Anyway, she's inside. I'll see if she wants to talk to you…" She's still eying him suspiciously, very much so.

Turning around, she opens the door and slinks inside. "Sydney? Hey, Sydney?" She patters through the house, looking for her room mate. "There's a shrink outside to talk to you. He's … got fish lips."

Having abandoned the couch and the magazine for the kitchen and her new past time: baking. Today? Cookies that she won't eat. The pair of blondes have experienced a role reversal of sorts, should they both have appetites at the same time the world may implode on itself.

Fortunately she hasn't gotten very far in her baking, going only as far as turning on the oven. It seems the heat of having it on doesn't bother her, but then she's also dressed in layers and layers of clothing.

But as Lizzie cuts into her recipe reading, Sydney quirks an eyebrow. "What? Who?" suspiciously, she dusts her hands of the flour and pads back towards the door, shuffling in her movements. Unlike Lizzie, she doesn't step out of the screen, lingering just inside as she peers at the other therapist. The light, the air, and the general appearance of the area cause her to stiffen. "Fred…" her eyebrows furrow as she glances back to Lizzie and then the therapist and Lizzie again. Maybe she just doesn't get visitors?

Fred tilts his head. "So…you're going by Lizzie now, are ya Hallis? Well, Lizzie is certainly a lovely name." He says softly. As she goes to retrieve Sydney, Fred keeps in the same spot he'd walked to. "Syd…hi." He says softly. "How are you? Doing alright?" He flashes her a smile. "I hope I'm not disturbing you. Hallis…Lizzie…whatever she's going by these days, didn't seem to like the fact that I'm here. Of course, there could be any of a multitude of reasons that she wouldn't want me here. Only a few reasons could I speculate to."

Lizzie's face is set into an angry stare that people only see from Rednecks down south when someone steps on their land. Once again, her arms are folded over her chest and she's hunched in a rather menacing pose that would look intimidating if she wasn't the height of a leprechaun with the stature of a stick man. "My name isn't Hallis, it's Lizette… Lizzie for short. Hallis lives in a fancy apartment in Greenwich Village. I live here." The young woman makes her statement as though it's proof enough that she's exactly who she says she is and no one else.

Turning her head slightly to look at the back of Sydney's head, she purses her lips into a grim little line and furrows her eyebrows. "Sydney can tell you, Hallis is someone else entirely." She's not exactly lying, she's just not telling the whole truth.

"Hiiiii," the word is drawn out, but stated all-too-quietly. She opens her mouth to say something else, only to close it moments later, attempting to find some semblance of herself, issuing him a strained smile. It's not altogether disingenuine, but it lacks its usual warmth and lustre.

"And what speculations do you draw?" she presses her lips together, that curiosity of hers pulling at her features, drawing them into a tight perplexion. Her arms hug her body protectively, which she tightens even more.

"And it's true. Lizzie is my friend, assistant, and roommate. She's not an actress like Hallis," the blonde therapist shrugs as she glances at Lizzie, silently questioning if the answer was acceptable.

Fred approaches the door silently and in quiet tones he says, "If you're trying to hide something, you needn't worry around me. I know you're Hallis Van Cortlandt because you called me 'doctor' and you knew I was a therapist, when I'd said nothing of the like to you just now." He says with curious tones. "If there is a reason you're hiding your true identity, than fine. You can't hide it from me, however. I was your therapist, Miss Van Cortlandt, no matter for how long or short." He states quite simply, but still in quiet tones. "I don't see why you two feel the need to hide this from me, but I won't question."

Fred puts on a bright smile and in more normal levels says, "Well, I've come to say hi and to check in. It's been a little while and I wanted to visit. That's all. But…if you're busy, I'll come again another time."

With an angry snort, Lizzie clenches her teeth and narrows her eyes a little more. "Well, I might know who you are, but I'm not Hallis Van Cortlandt. Of that, I can assure you. If you need proof, just get us in the same room." She gives the man a narrow eyed smile that's filled with tension. As quickly as it takes for the young woman to take her eyes off Fred, the smile is off her face and it's smoothed into a neutral expression. "Want me to stay here, Sydney? Or do you want to be alone?"

She doesn't move for the time being, not until actually bidden to go away. Her eyes shift nervously between the two, almost as though she expects Fred to jump out and attack the taller of the two blondes. He is a head shrinker after all, it's possible that he actually does shrink heads.

"We have nothing to hide. Lizzie is Lizzie. Hallis is Hallis. Everyone supposedly has a look alike somewhere in the world, and I can the resemblance, but it's the way it is," Sydney's tone is matter-of-fact as she glances towards Lizzie again, her own cheeks flushing with an odd pink hue.

Her arms still hugging her body, she quirks a single eyebrow now. "It has been awhile." Swallowing her eyebrows knit together now, "Back at work? I'm theoretically back. Sort of. Not really." Shrug. "Consulting mostly. None of my own caseload. It means I mostly spend time on the phone." She hates leaving the house these days. Turning back to Lizzie she shrugs again, "I… I don't think we need privacy…" Not that she's actually told Lizzie much about what happened and where she'd disappeared to.

Fred looks between the two women, still disbelieving. "Still doesn't explain how I'm know by Lizzie here. But, I assume that if I go to the 'real' Hallis, as you two are saying there is another one, and ask her if she knows me, she shall?" He doesn't believe this one bit, but he lets it drop.

Looking to Sydney, he says, "May I come in? I feel awkward standing in the doorway. And if we're gonna visit, I don't think we want to do so standing here." He says softly, nodding to both women. "Yes, I'm back to work at the community centre, working with at risk kids and kids who otherwise can't afford therapy. I've quite working in mental hospitals and psychiatric wards, though. At least for now. I want to do more…low-key work for now."

After rolling her eyes, Lizzie gives a disgusted shake of her head to Fred before turning and stalking away. "Whatever…" she utters, waving a dismissive hand in his direction before pivoting and stalking off to the living room. She rounds the corner with a purposeful gait but once out of sight, she stops and waits, slipping silently against the wall to listen. It's all just in case Sydney needs her or Dr. Stone becomes a giant wad and needs kicking out. Either way, the young woman readies herself for the possibility.

"…I guess? Come in," Sydney pushes on the screen to allow Fred inside, and shuffles back towards to couch. The room itself is relatively dark, even midday as she hasn't quite given in and opened the blinds, but she is learning, outgrowing her little bagged quirks.

Perching on the sofa she kind of shrugs, "Low-key work. Right." Pressing her lips together she hmmms quietly, "I suppose I am too. No regular clients for awhile. Which I think is… safe. For me. For them." She chews absently on her bottom lip, her one nervous habit shining through even after all of the turmoil.

Fred nods a little bit, smiling. "That's the best thing to do right now, isn't it?" He says softly, following the two women in and taking a seat as well. "For now, I'm remaining as 'Doctor Fred'." He shrugs slightly. "But yes, it's probably better, for us all, to not have regular clients." He says happily. "But, enough of these sad tones. How would you two lovely ladies like to go see a movie? A comedy. Or…perhaps go out for dinner? I know this lovely little place that's only a few blocks away from here. Easy walking distance."

When Sydney and Fred come inside and around the corner, Lizzie runs and jumps onto the couch, grabbing a magazine to flip through it nonchalantly. It is there they find her, idly perusing the gossip of the PEOPLE that Sydney had been reading a short while ago. The folded and ripped out pages are noted with a quick glance and raised brow to the other woman but she doesn't say anything.

Only when Fred makes the invitation does Lizzie wrinkle her nose and shake her head. "Not for me, thank you, I don't like to eat or watch movies." Which is something exactly like Hallis would say, at least she would when she was Hallis. It is that statement that makes Lizzie look a little uncomfortable and glance back down at the magazine. "Uhh… what I mean is, no thank you. I already ate and there's nothing I really want to go see."

The invitation actually draws an odd frown as the blonde therapist glances at the window and then back to her guest. Her lips press into a thin line, a determined pokerface, hiding her emotions underneath a nonchalant attitude. Her gaze sweeps towards Lizzie and then back to Fred. Her eyebrow quirks at Lizzie's answer, something so un-Lizzie considering she's the roommate who eats now.

Tongue runs over her lips, contemplating her response. She shifts on the couch next to that roommate of hers, drawing her knees up to her chest, only to decide she's not comfortable that way. Her legs are returned to the floor and then crossed. Still uncomfortably. Finally, she answers matter-of-factly, "I… can't."

Fred smiles and nods. "Okay. It's all good. Doesn't hurt to ask, eh?" He says softly. "So, what's up otherwise?" He looks to Lizzie. "And since it does seem I'm mistaken about knowing you, of which I am sorely sorry, I'd like to officially introduce myself. I'm Doctor Fred Flint Stone. Yes, horrible name isn't it? Can't get away from the Flintstone's for the life of me!" He chuckles softly. "And you're Lizzie, short for Lizette. A French name, isn't it?"

"Hi, yes," is the monotonous answer to Fred's introduction and question, in that order. Lizzie continues to casually skim through the pages of the magazine, not offering anything else or even to move. Getting to another folded page, she risks a peek under the flap before her face turns a little pink and then red. Her jaw clenches and releases furiously as she opens the page fully and points to the shoes that Hallis is wearing. The bellow that rages forth from the tiny woman is nothing compared to the wallop of emotion that hits Sydney from her end of the sofa. "THAT WHORE SCUFFED MY JIMMY CHOOS!!"

Her thin finger butts against the page repeatedly as she first shows the exhibit to Sydney and then Fred. Fury envelopes her as she breathes heavily through her nose, trying with all her might to calm herself in the presence of the other blonde. "I'm. Going. To. Kill. Her." Lizzie emits slowly, grinding her teeth and turning the magazine around again to study the offense again. She's fixated and filled with a murderous rage for the woman on the page.

And unfortunately, with little guarding and little reason for said guarding, there is nothing that keeps the therapist in check. In fact, she essentially loses it as well. "What the hell was she thinking?! Taking your freakin' life?! THE SHOES, Lizzie… THE SHOES!!! They were so beautiful!" Sydney clambers from her seat and over to the curtains which have been a point of contention for her the last few days. Firmly she yanks on the curtains as tears fill her eyes. Her own suppressed anger pushed to the surface leaks out and is combined with Lizzie's.


"I HATE THIS SPACE! I HATE EVERYTHING ABOUT THIS SPACE! AND I CAN NEVER FREAKIN' LEAVE! EVER!!" The torn curtains are haphazardly thrust across the room as she marches towards the kitchen, still full of an inexplicable rage.

Fred raises an eyebrow at Lizzie. "But…oh, that must be 'Hallis'." He tilts his head. "But…" He shakes his head, looking up as Sydney as she gets up and goes over rips the curtains. "Syd…Syddie…deep breaths. Focus on something else. Anything else." He turns to Lizzie. "You umm…may wanna tone down your emotions a little bit." He doesn't know if she knows about Syd or not, but he says it anyway. "And what does she mean about her taking your life? I thought you weren't Hallis."

Lizzie's too busy fuming over her own problems to pay any attention to Fred, though Sydney's way of shedding light into their lives catches her by surprise. Taking heavy breaths, she crumples her face into a bitter expression and nearly spits at Fred as she speaks. "She stole my life! I'm not Hallis anymore!! I can't be Hallis anymore because a stupid shapeshifter stole everything!!" With that, she balls up the magazine and storms off.

Taking the stairs two and three at a time, Lizzie pounds up to the second floor and slams the door of her bedroom. Next, all that is heard is the crashing and thumping of the tiny woman throwing an epic temper tantrum and letting loose wails that would have a banshee turning fits of jealousy. When there seems to be nothing left for her to throw or tip over, there's one final thump as she collapses onto her bed and begins sobbing with despair.

Unfortunately the distance isn't enough to calm the other blonde's mood. Her attention has been redirected to a box of packed dishes off to the side of the kitchen. For some reason it had ended upstairs and she dragged it down here today. Lifting the lid, she unpacks the first dish — a plate. It has a purple painted flower on it and at this moment, more than anything, it represents something she hates.

The plate is lifted in the air above Sydney's head and then brought to floor with full force, tears streaming down her cheeks. She's angry. Very very angry.


"Hey! HEY!" Fred jumps up as the plate comes crashing down. He rushes over to Sydney and takes hold of her arms before she can grab another plate to smash. "This is UNNECESSARY! This isn't you! This is HER emotions! Now come with me!" He says, grabbing her hand and pulling her upstairs with him toward Lizzie's room. Once there, he knocks loudly on the door before opening it. "HEY! We can deal with this shapeshifter, but you've got to COOL down! This isn't doing anyone any good!"

The door creaks open as Fred knocks on it. The broken catch when she slammed it shut clinks to the floor with the inner doorknob, something that will have to be fixed before anyone tries to close it again. Inside the room, Lizzie lies on the bed, sobbing uncontrollably. She's face down, buried in a mess of frilly pillows. The muffled wails that are hiccupped out into the lace and fluff are, at the very least, one of the most heartbreaking sounds the dainty woman could muster.

Fred and Sydney's arrival is acknowledged as Lizzie lifts her head, the black streaks of mascara that streak her cheeks and stain her pillow. When Fred yells at her, the blonde's little face twists into another weeping mess and she throws herself back into the pillows dramatically. Her tiny body quivers with every exhale of woe and the 'OoOoooOoooooo' sounds that come from the bed are a strong testament to the fact that what he said probably just hurt her feelings even more. Boo. Hoo. Hoo.

"I! DON'T! WANT! TO!" Obstinately, angry Sydney tugs back on her hand, she's too angry to think logically and even manages to hit a few pictures hanging on the wall, purposely knocking them off to allay her anger; she may regret that later.

An angry hit is given to the wall as Sydney determines it to be her latest source of madness. Her fingers ball into tight fists as she twitches uncomfortably in her position.

Leading the obstinate Sydney into the room, Fred sighs. "Look. I know this is a tough time. For everyone present. And you, Hallis," Yes, he's going to call her by her actual name, "have lost your own life to a shapeshifter. But, if we're going to fix this, we're going to have to work together, okay? I'm sorry for being harsh, but I'm gonna to need everyone's help. Especially yours, Hallis." He says calmly and sincerely, and even a tad sympathetically. "I want to help. Honestly I do."

''GET OUT!!" Lizzie screams into the pillow, whether it's Sydney's anger circling back to her or whether she actually does feel that way is immaterial. She feels it again and the rush of rage renews itself with a barrage of pillows throws forcibly in Fred's direction. "You don't know anything!! Get out of my room!!" She leaps off the bed and charges toward Fred. When she reaches him, she places her hands on his chest and pushes with all of her might. Then, her eyes widen in fear, she gasps and steps back a pace. Her hands remain on his chest for a second more before she slowly pulls them away. "G-g-get out… please… get out…"

The change in Lizzie's emotions actually pull Sydney into a small pile on the floor, her tears continuing to stream down her face. She presses desperately against them, but between her Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and Lizzie's panic, her usual defence mechanisms are busted, utterly and completely. She crumples, forehead to floor as the tears accumulate on the carpet. She gasps desperately for breath around the tears. Her shoulders shake underneath her sobs as the mess of blonde hair covers her face.

Fred frowns at Lizzie as she pushes him. He rubs his chest, gazing at her strangely. He shakes his head, however, when Sydney crumples on the floor. There's an obvious pained look on his face as he sees this. It hurts him to see her like that. Sitting on the floor beside her, he takes her into a hug, not making mention of Lizzie's request of him. Not immediately, anyway.

When Sydney lands on the floor in a heap, Lizzie's eyes widen and she stands there, not attempting to console or touch the woman at all. She gapes at her friend for a second or two and then, without another south or word, she pivots on one heel and races into her closet. The slatted door is slid closed and she huddles there, watching through the thin slits.

Forcing herself to a kneeling position, Sydney uses the sleeves of her sweater to sop up her tears. She takes a deep soothing breath through her mouth — her nose is so plugged she couldn't breathe through it if she wanted, nothing like flash tears to clog the sinuses. She slides herself upwards before glancing towards the closet and then back to the hall. "I need… to… clear my head…" she presses on her forehead to minimize the major mood swings. She's been working so hard suppress her ability at night that it opens her up to more during the day.

Fred blinks, standing with Sydney. "O…okay. Yeah. Of course. Totally." He takes a deep breath in. "Do umm…do you want me to stay with you? Just…to be there?" He glances at the closet worriedly. "Are…are you alright?" He's certainly worried about all parties. Or seemingly so.

Sniffling now, she finishes pushing the tears away from her face. "I…" Sydney sucks in another breath and shakes her head. "…I think I need… to… be… alone…walls don't have feelings…" her expression is almost apologetic as she trembles minutely.

Fred clears his throat and nods a little bit. "Ummm…do you just want me to leave completely?" He wouldn't blame her. But…yeah. He has to ask. "If you want, I'll be just downstairs, in the kitchen. In case anyone wants to talk." He smiles weakly.

Sydney presses her lips together as she thinks. "I don't… think…" A vague glance is given to the closet that has consumed Lizzie. "I think… you should leave for today… Lizzie doesn't want to talk… and I…" she shakes her head. She's locked down and has been for months.

"Yeah…yeah. I totally understand." Fred nods only slightly, and without further adieu, he leaves the room and makes his way downstairs and out of house and to his car. Well…that didn't go as he expected it to.

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