(WARNING! Various horrible things said by a character!)
Shark and Sinbad listened to the commotion coming from the Interview room.
It seemed Lolly couldn’t be asked one question without flying off the handle. All they’d heard so far was her accusing her brother of ruining her life from day one.
“Guess she can’t let go of a grudge, huh?” Shark remained quiet. He didn’t like how she was trying to make him look like the villain.
Thankfully, it sounded like Dennis and Dudley didn’t believe her. It was almost as if they prepared for her to appeal the punishment being given to her.
“Child, the mayor’s daughter got juvenile hall! What chance do you think you have?”
The moment Annette left Horse-Face and Ox-Head’s room, she was suddenly pushed down to the floor.
“Ow! What the…?” Despite her wriggling, she was unable to get free from whoever sat on her now.
“Oh there you are,” she heard The Builder casually state. “Good thing, too! I finally booked our honeymoon. Kind of…Kind of forgot to do that earlier…”
The word ‘honeymoon’ made Annette want to throw up. Nothing disturbed her more than having to spend even more time with this disgusting fiend. She began kicking harder in an effort to get them off.
“Jeez, Netty! Lighten up, I just forgot for a little bit. Though we do gotta stop off back in Trailer Trash Village. Have to run some errands, watch some stuff happen-”
“The town’s name is Twinbrook!”
The Builder just shrugged, and lit up a menthol. “Hey, if you feel better calling it that. All of Louisiana smells the same to me.”
After Shark and Sinbad returned home, they found Sagebear in the front, dutifully waiting for them.
Immediately, Sagebear could sense tension in the air. Her tail stopped wagging, and instead wandered away into their bedroom. Shark appeared not to notice.
Sinbad was honestly unsure what to say. He couldn’t think of anything that could help the situation.
“Wanna sit down on the couch?” Shark only nodded, having not uttered a word since they were at the police station. Awkwardly, he strode over and took his seat.
As soon as he did, Sagebear returned. This time, she came back with Shark’s teddy bear in her mouth.
Both men watched as she carried it over to him, setting it into Shark’s lap. In gratitude, Shark reached over and pet her head.
“You read my mind, dog,” Sinbad whispered as he took a seat next to Shark. Seemingly in answer, Sagebear rested her head on Sinbad’s knee and whimpered.
This very sound seemed to be what finally broke Shark. Before Sinbad could say anything, he lurched forward and proceeded to let loose with his tears.
Dennis felt numbed as he heard his daughter screaming in her temporary cell. Said numbness only intensified with each time she shouted, “This isn’t fair!”
“Would it be best if I call over your lady friend, brother? Perhaps she could provide some well-needed support.” Dennis nodded a little at Dudley’s suggestion.
With that, he was left alone to his thoughts. Said thoughts led him to bury his face into his hands.
Dennis couldn’t remember how long he’d been there. He did realize he’d dozed off only when he felt a hand on his shoulder.
“Hm?” Looking up, Dennis saw Blaise’s nervous face. His eyes followed her when she took a seat across from him.
“So how ya doing, Denny?” Blaise was clearly attempting to sound cheerful. It was fairly obvious, however, that even she was feeling the magnitude of the situation.
He groaned in start of a response. “I suppose as well as I can be, given the circumstances.” He then pulled out one of his hands, and twirled it in contemplation. “It’s just hard to take in that this would happen between my own children.”
Thinking over what he just said, Dennis added on, “But then again, knowing this family…”
Looking over the results once more, Marc huddled into himself. His work in progress stood behind him, having yet to be resumed.
Marc almost wanted to think he was just having a very confusing dream. No amount of pinching proved otherwise, though. No matter how many times he saw the paper, it all said the same thing.
He wasn’t angry, just very confused and dumbfounded. Now, he lay in bed, trying to make sense of this recent revelation.
Reaching over, Marc grabbed hold of his phone, and dialed the number for Mister Clay. He waited in silence, holding his breath as each ring could be heard.
“Hello?” Hearing his voice now just about obliterated his self-control. Marc kept himself from hanging up when he breathed deeply and said:
“Tell me about the time you met her.”
Sinbad was leading Shark back to the truck now. This time, Shark clutched his bear to his chest.
“You’ll get all the time to pet the dog when we’re done with errands. For now, I want to buy some holiday stuff. Then we gotta stop by Amy’s house.”
Gently, Sinbad squeezed his fiance’s shoulder. “Sound good? We get a cute little tree, some cheap-ass ornaments, all that fun shit.”
Shark just made a noise that sounded much like, “eh.” His eyes were now unblinking, as if he’d cried himself into an unemotional state.
All too well, Sinbad knew what Shark was doing. The last thing he wanted was to watch Shark gradually lock himself away because of this.
“You want to ride in the back of the truck? Might be fun.” Shark didn’t give an answer, but wandered over to the back and jumped in. Sinbad waited until he was comfortable, and then got into the driver’s seat.
As Dennis and Blaise made their way out of the station, they caught a glimpse of Sinbad’s truck driving by.
“Well, it looks as if Mister Rotter’s off to do his own thing.” He craned his neck over to see in the back window. “And it looks like he’s bringing the boy along with him. Less for me to think about, I suppose.”
He turned to look at Blaise. “Would it be all right if I spent another night at your place? Or would that be intruding?”
“Not in the least!” Blaise just gave a little smile. “Alma and I love it when ya spend time with us. But ain’t ya worried about yer son?”
“I am, but Mister Rotter’s with him. Let’s just say I trust that man for a plethora of reasons. He’s also one of the few folks left I can say that for.”
Hearing this now got Blaise to look at him quizzically. “Oh? Who are the others?”
“Well, let’s see, in no particular order…” The two kept walking as he listed people. “The boy, Dudley, Miss Alma, you of course…”
“But not the rest of yer family?” Her question got Dennis to shook his head. “From what ya said of them in the past, that’s kind of obvious, though.”
By the time Annette and The Builder arrived in Twinbrook, evening had already fallen. This only served to please The Builder, judging by the toothy smile on their face.
“All right! Good thing we took the scenic route, eh?” They then took a whiff of the air, then cringed. “Still smells like piss and corpses, though. Eh, we won’t be here too long, I hope.”
Annette could only look around where they’d landed. She caught sight of a nearby swamp house that she knew to have a basement. For a reason she couldn’t figure out, the door was open now.
“Please tell me you’re not going to do anything unpleasant.” Instead of answering her, The Builder started off towards the small island that contained several houses.
Left with no other choice, Annette ran off after them. On her way, she looked over back at the house.
The Builder was all too happy to reach the destination in mind. Annette, for plenty of reasons, didn’t share their feelings.
“Ooh, look at all the windows on this place! It’s like a big vivarium, except it doesn’t have Ox-Head eating the scenery.” Jumping off the roof and onto the balcony, The Builder looked through the sliding glass door.
When Annette realized where she was, her eyes widened. “No…”
“Yes~! It seems there’s been a new arrival in this town! Isn’t that sweet?” They stepped back, and assumed a thinking position. “Oh, but word is that mama’s not saying who daddy really is! Lovely, isn’t it?”
“How would you know about all that?” Hearing Annette’s voice got them to snap their back into a right angle towards her. As if to ridicule her inquiry, they snorted and mimicked her.
“Come on. Everyone in this town knows the Bull woman is a filthy slut. What else do you call someone who willingly sleeps with her ‘best friend’s’ fiance?”
This vile insult made Annette grit her teeth in anger. “Don’t say that about Amy.”
“Well, why not? I’m just telling you the truth. She couldn’t stand what’s-her-face being happy, so she became Mr. Blond’s mistress as compromise and made the poor girl miserable.
“Funny,” The Builder sneered at Annette, “that sounds like a certain open relationship I’ve caught wind of. What, couldn’t stand to see that happy couple? You had to horn in on their supposed marital bliss?”
Annette just clenched her fist when trying to find the right words.
“Stop saying those things! Amy was my friend-”
“And she was a filthy, lying, thieving whore!” The Builder snapped back to normal position, but then turned to confront her. “She’s one no matter what version of this shit town I visited!”
By this point, The Builder had started to jab Annette in the chest with their finger. “Face it: It never ends well for the mistress when they finally get what they want. At best? Divorce. And at worst?”
They stopped, and made a slicing motion across their neck, with appropriate sound effect. Had it not been for the front door of the house opening, they would have gone on.
“All right! The star of this sordid little tale just showed up! And she’s brought that hairless little rat of hers. Looks like we get front row seats to this, too!”
Reluctantly taking her place next to them, Annette quietly listened to a baby’s animalistic howling.
No matter what Amy did, her newborn refused to be calmed. Not even his mother’s gentle rocking while going up the stairs helped.
“Honey, please. I’m already in big enough trouble for leaving the hospital early.” She turned away from the sliding door, therefore conveniently unaware of her audience. “Just please be quiet in time for Sinbad to get here.”
She set her baby son into his new crib, with no change in his poor attitude. It appeared nothing was able to quell him.
“What’s wrong with you? Are you hungry? Do you need to be changed?” Amy’s son was already red in the face from his screaming.
Seeing nothing else she could do, Amy stepped back and ran downstairs with her ears covered. She breathed a sigh of relief when she saw the familiar black truck pull up into the driveway.
Sinbad looked back at his fiance inspecting the small tree in his hands now. It pained him to have to leave him alone now, even for a short time.
“If you want, you can start decorating it while I deal with this.” He unbuckled his seat belt, and opened the truck door. “I won’t be long, I swear.”
He then left Shark to be alone with his bear and the tree, and strolled across the deck that led to Amy’s house.
“Yo, Amy! I’m h-oly hell!” The ear-splitting cries caused Sinbad to cover his ears.
“I’m sorry!” Amy whined. “He’s been crying since we got home. I’ve tried everything! Look, let’s just get this over with…”
She gestured for him to take a seat at the table. As they walked, she proceeded to bring up the true reason she called him here.
“Maybe he’s crying because of the whole ‘his father won’t really be around to raise him-”
Before she continued, Sinbad interrupted her. “You seem to forget that I’m literally the son of a whore. So having no daddy is basically preaching to the choir.”
“Oh…Right.” Now she filed through a stack of papers, before pulling out one that seemed overly cutesy. “I just need you to sign this, is all.”
“Yeah okay, I…” Sinbad was reaching for a pen when seeing the document up close made him freeze. “Whoa, wait a sec, Amy. I think you grabbed the wrong paper.”
He held it up to show her. “This is, uh…This is the birth certificate.”
Amy looked closer, then shook her head. “No, that’s the paper I want you to sign.” When she finished talking, Amy noticed how unusually calm Sinbad had become.
This filled her with dread, given she knew what was about to follow.
(A/N: To make things clear: I don’t actually think Louisiana smells bad)