Title: How Long
Summary: Joyce the morning after Becoming, Pt 2.
Notes: Whenever I hear Sarah McLachlan sing World on Fire, I always think of Joyce, especially lately. Quite possibly the schmoopiest thing I’ve ever written.
FB: Yes but remember, the cut says it's my first
Joyce fic. Be nice.
She holds her daughter’s note and wonders how her child got so lost.
When they argued, she’d seen the age in her girl’s pretty green eyes, a wisdom that came from too hard living and she wonders what she was doing while her child was saving the world and making impossible choices.
How badly had she failed her baby that she felt her only recourse was to run?
Run from her friends, from her life, and from her, a mother who wouldn’t understand, a mother who yelled and threatened when she should have been holding onto her baby with both arms and all of her heart.
Her heart flutters badly in her chest as she wonders what decisions her child had to make while she slept on, what horrible thing, to make her write a note like the one she held with desperate fingers.
Her eyes search the dresser cluttered with a girl’s possessions, and only now does she see the number of silver crosses on chains, small pewter crucifixes and vials of water. When she walks with an aching slow gait to the closet and rifles through her daughter’s unwashed clothing, only now will she see the small tears and blood stains mixing with grass and dirt on her pants, her shirts.
One bloodied tear is right over where her child’s heart would beat. How close did she come to losing her only child, how many times, while she slept unaware, unwilling to see anything but what she wanted?
How long had her baby been fighting this lonely war, while she closed her eyes and told herself everything was alright?
Long enough, she thinks, and she sits on her daughter’s empty bed.
Now she makes a promise to her child, to wait for her to come home, however long that will take.