“Are you almost done with your negotiations?” Marc poked at the hummus dip in front of him, as he talked on the phone. “I’m kind of tired of having the TV on all the time, I am.”
“Soon, Marc,” Mister Clay sleepily muttered. “I’ll at least try to be home by the 8th of next month. Most likely before then.” He stopped, and Marc heard him give off a loud yawn. “Make sure you get everything prepared by then, all right?”
Marc quit poking the hummus. “I will.” He then decided to ask a little more about their recently-disclosed connection:
“Exactly how much time did you say you spent with her again?” A sigh came from the other line. Marc didn’t know whether it was from weariness or frustration.
“I only had about a week with her. There’s…a longer explanation behind it, but…Well, I only had a week. And you had sixteen years.
“So frankly, Marc, you’d know more about her than I would. If anything, you should be telling me about her.”
Marc gave a sound that wordlessly stated that he was right. He then got up to pull the curtains down, when he noticed a light coming from a house he knew shouldn’t have been occupied.
His observation didn’t go unnoticed, even over the phone.
“Marc? You all right? You know I get nervous when you go silent.” Mister Clay was reassured when Marc spoke again, if only a little.
“I’m gonna call you back. There’s something I want to go check out.” With that, he hung up, and grabbed his coat.
It wasn’t like Sinbad had anywhere else to go. The police tape and locked doors only proved to be an insignificant nuisance for entering his old home.
Sinbad was pleasantly surprised to see his old bedroom was still more or less intact. The only thing that really changed was the crib put off to the side. This lone addition made him sick, knowing why it was there.
Looking at it somehow bothered him more than the copious amount of blood on the carpet. Then again, the stains seemed to blend in enough for him not to notice.
He was amazed the power to the house hadn’t been shut off. He still only needed one light on to see how much he’d been crying.
Hearing Shark’s words echoing in his mind kept hurting, as though he were being stabbed repeatedly. Wiping the smeared makeup off proved futile. Sinbad’s tears just kept coming.
Already, the new year proved to be an upsetting one. Sinbad continued to let loose with his anguished sobs. He was so loud, he almost didn’t hear the door to his room opening.
When he did, he tried to keep his crying to a minimum volume, in hopes that whoever it was would leave.
“Look, I’ll pay the fine or go to jail, whatever!” He shouted through his tears, thinking it was a policeman or paranoid neighbor. “Can’t a guy get some fucking privacy in his own fucking house?!”
Marc jumped back far enough to hit the wall. His eyes widened when he saw the redheaded man sitting on the bed looking disheveled and miserable.
When he calmed back down to say what he felt he should, he addressed the most confusing part first.
“If you live here, then why with all the yellow tape? You trying to scare the cops?” The way he sighed confirmed he wasn’t meant to be in this place.
Then came the silence, meaning there was no way he could explain.
“Well, I did live here. Not anymore really, but…” He trailed off, then picked up again. “Hey, don’t tell me you didn’t go and do drastic shit right after a breakup!”
Leaning against the doorframe, Marc gave a coy smile as if to mess with him. “Yeah, but I never trespassed into the place where some guy was brutally murdered.”
He became more serious again. “Look, if you’re really hurting for a place to stay, then I guess…” He gestured out the door, as a way to indicate his own house.
How DVDs managed to be of such low quality, Annette couldn’t figure out. Nevertheless, she still watched as the footage started to roll.
Next to her, The Builder’s twin sat cross-legged, far more somber than usual. Behind them, Horse-Face and his companion held each other close. Outside, the shouting and screaming had dissipated.
“Where’s this even taking place?” Annette questioned upon seeing the ambiguous setting. A large amount of important-looking machinery was set about.
The footage remained like that for so long, she thought that perhaps the DVD froze. Then, she watched a group of people on the screen enter the setting.
Most of them wore what appeared to be lab coats, or otherwise important-looking uniforms. Two of them held a woman between them.
Annette couldn’t tell for sure who the woman could be, only that she looked messy and filthy. Her hands were tied, and she wore a hospital gown. Her face was obscured towards the camera.
Despite the poor camera quality, Annette watched as another of the group lifted the woman’s head up. It was still hard to tell, but Annette had a feeling she knew who it was now.
“Is that…?” She looked over at the twin, but they only looked away sadly. She still needed an answer, so she looked over at Horse-Face’s companion.
Not in the mood to chat, the young man pointed at the screen. “Just keep watching.” Turning back, Annette’s eyes widened when she saw how quickly the scenario had soured.
The woman was now being slapped hard across the face. Though there was no audio, she could practically hear every time the man’s hand connected.
“Do I…” She swallowed. “Is it really necessary for me to watch this?”
The upset tone of her voice led to the twin stopping the video, and ejecting the disc. They then put it back, only to pull out another one.
Annette could only wonder what made them decide she needed to see all this.
The teddy bear that once held so much joy, now felt like a cheaply stuffed insult to him.
Shark gripped the bear tightly in his hands, grabbing a hold of it like he wanted to squeeze the life out of it. He instead flung it against the bedroom wall in a fit of anger.
He couldn’t believe that all this time, his father and now ex-fiance had been keeping secrets from him. It was enough for him to send his fist into the wall next.
All the commotion was enough to alert Sagebear. As soon as Shark realized she was in the room with him, all his apoplexy dampened. He then fell to the floor like his legs turned into jelly.
“I’m sorry, doggy,” he rasped out as she approached him. Sagebear just rested her head on his knee and whined.
Her cries still had the same impact as before. Shark wanted to hug her, but didn’t want to inadvertently take his rage out on her.
Reaching over, Shark took hold of his teddy bear, and handed it to her. After sniffing it, Sagebear grabbed hold of it with her mouth.
“At least that thing can still have positive memories with it now, right?” Sagebear just wagged her tail, seemingly pleased at having another new toy.
“And you’d never lie to me, right?” He asked while scratching her head.