PLEASE REVIEW - I LOVE HEARING FROM THE READERS! I love to know what people are feeling as they read it - it gives me more of an incentive to keep writing - helps :)
Everything seemed to move in a fog.
The doctor would't let Lorelai back to see Rory.
He said she didn't want to see her.
Lorelai had nervously begged him to at least tell her how her daughter was – was she still in pain? Could they please give her something? Did she know that Lorelai was still there?
The doctor just said that he would update her as the social services agents allowed him to. But for the time, she was stable. That was all he could legally tell her.
The waiting room chair became the one place she didn't move from. Her sweater pulled tight around her – she sat back and pulled her knees to her chest. Just watching the doors. Waiting for someone to come out and tell her that Rory wanted to see her.
Waiting for the world to stop spinning.
She would lay her head on her knees and cry. And then stop.
Other times she found herself crying without realizing she was – wet tears staining her jeans where she laid her head.
She could tell that people were there for her.
Or at least that's what she assumed the people moving around her were.
They would come over and try to hug her – but Lorelai just stared at the doors. Never moving. Just sitting there.
She watched the child with a bloody nose being taken through the doors. Sniffles and colds came and went. A man with a pen lodged in his arm and a yelling wife at his side.
Food came and went on the table beside where she sat. Coffee – so much coffee – even the smell didn't pull her out of her fog. Steam would fade into the air – growing colder the longer it sat there. Fast food bags. Bags from Luke's. Candy boxes piled up.
And while she sat there – she couldn't even think.
Didn't know if she wanted to. Or just couldn't.
The hours past. People came. People went. But she just sat there.
Until she heard one voice.
Lorelai allowed the world to come back into focus. And looked up.
Her little girl stood on the edge of the carpet in the waiting room. Luke's hand on her shoulder. And little Addie just stood there. Her hair pulled back in pigtails, with her mis-matched pajamas and rainboots on.
Little. And Innocent.
And something snapped inside of Lorelai.
Because she saw Addie's cheeks full of tears, streaming down her face. Eyes red from crying. Standing there – shaking.
Her daughter needed her.
And Lorelai sat up in the chair, and stretched her hands out.
Within a second, Addie's cries could be heard across the waiting room as she ran to Lorelai, like a little bunny runs for his safe place to hide from the predator.
"Mommy…" The cry broke through the fog. And as Lorelai felt the tiny arms wrap around her neck, and the warm breath of her baby against her skin – as she felt the tiny body quivering against her own as Addie cried – Lorelai pulled Addie up onto her lap.
And said the first words since everything happened. "Sh… baby… shh…" Lorelai's hand rubbed back and forth against Addie's back as she whispered, "Oh, baby, what's wrong…"
What wasn't wrong?
Addie just nestled her head into Lorelai's neck and said, "I just want my mommy." Her little voice. So sweet. So trusting.
Lorelai just placed a kiss on Addie's hair, and then laid her head down, tugging Addie closed as she laid back in the chair. Her arms full.
And she looked up and saw Luke. Standing there. Watching.
And Lorelai blinked away tears as she whispered soothing words to her daughter. All the while, knowing her other daughter needed her just as much.
Within a few minutes, she could feel her daughter's breathing soften. Even out. And she looked down and saw dark lashes settled against the soft, tear-stained cheeks. And her thumb slightly falling out of her little mouth – the one habit they tried to break her of – but when she was really upset – Lorelai understood. Anthing right now to calm her daughter.
"I thought having her here might…" Luke's voice beside her hesitated. "… help."
Lorelai just nodded, setting Addie's head against her chest and running her fingers tenderly through the curls that hung from her pigtails. "Why was she so upset?" The words. So void of any feeling. Flat. Like everything around Lorelai.
"Well…" Luke hesitated. "I just wanted to check on her…"
The way he said it. Protecting.
What Lorelai should have been doing.
Then he said, "When I got to Sookie's, she wasn't…"
And Lorelai just moved her head and stared ahead again. Tone flat. "He picked her up from Sookie's, didn't he?" She knew becauase that's how Max was. Caring. Wnating to be with his children. Doing everything to help Lorelai not stress and care about things around her when she was going through so much.
Her stomach turned at the thought.
A quiet, "Yes." A simple word. But one with so much meaning.
Because Addie wasn't with Max.
She was here, with her – and Luke brought her.
She squeezed Addie's body tighter as she simply asked, "Did he put up much of a fight?"
She secretly hoped he had. Hoped Luke left behind a battered body there on her porch. At least a smashed in face. Something.
Then, simple words – all she could do. "Thank you."
"Sookie said she hasn't slept at all in the last two days." Luke said as he looked down on little Addie.
Lorelai's fingers found the soft cheeks, feeling a deep breath against her hand as Addie pulled air into her lungs, breathing deeply in her sleep.
Then Luke whispered, "She must feel safe now."
Lorelai shook her head. No one should feel safe with her.
She resisted the urge to push Addie over to Luke – knowing the pain she'd caused. The innocent child in her arms – suddenly in her mind, blood formed all over her precious six year old – and she just shook her head again and said, "She shouldn't."