First FanFic story! I hope you enjoy it! Please leave a review at the end and let me know what you think of it so far because I am super nervous about this. Thanks!
The young boy looked down at the hard cast on his arm and plucked at a loose thread on the white hospital bed sheet. He was trying his hardest to make his little eight- year-old mind pay attention to what the lady with big red hair sitting next to him was saying but a million things were running through his head and it was getting harder and harder to keep his eyes open. Why was he so tired? It seemed like all he had been doing the last two days was sleeping.
He wanted a blue cast. It was his favorite color. So when the doctor with the big round glasses and bushy beard had asked him what color he had wanted his cast to be he didn't hesitate to tell him he wanted it to be sky blue. Blue was the color of crayon he always liked to draw with when he and his mom used to sit on their raggedy carpet in their old apartment and color pictures all afternoon and do puzzles with dump trucks and backhoes on them. That was a long time ago though. Things were different now, harder now.
"Neal. Are you listening to me? You need to listen to what I am telling you. Okay sweetie?" Neal snapped his head up just as the redhead woman was closing her big binder and leaned forward towards the boy. His Mom used to call him sweetie, honey, bud… Hearing this woman call him by one of his nicknames that his Mom used to call him not so long ago made his breath catch in his throat and his stomach twist in a hard knot. He could feel hot tears behind his eyes that were threatening to fall. He wouldn't let them though; he was a big boy now. He couldn't let them see him cry.
"Yea, I heard you." Neal whispered shakily under his breath. He had lied though. He didn't hear one thing she had said. But he guessed it was something about how he was going to be heading to a foster home. He was going to be bouncing from home to home for the next ten years and there was nothing he could do about it. Not even Mozzie could help him out of this one. Mozzie was in the system now and on his way to a foster home all because of Neal. If he hadn't hurt his arm, none of this would have happened.
"Are you sure? Because I just figured you would be a little happier to hear that we found your Mother's brother and he has agreed to take you in. He will be here later this afternoon to meet you." She said as she stood up to leave.
Neal's ears perked up when he heard what the social worker had just said. His Mom had a brother? He had an uncle? He had family, someone who actually wanted him in their lives. It wasn't possible. His mom had never mentioned anything about a brother. Why hadn't he ever met him?
"I have an uncle? But that's impossible. My Mom has never said anything about having a brother." Neal said not believing what this complete stranger has just told him. His Mom would have told him. They never kept secrets from one another.
Candace, the social worker opened up her binder and quickly scanned through the page she had just read to the young boy. "Neal, it says here you have an uncle. You were quite young when your Mom passed away; she probably mentioned it to you but you forgot. His name is Peter Burke. Does that ring a bell with you? He lives in Brooklyn with his wife Elizabeth. Here's a picture of them." Candace said as she handed the 5x7 photograph to Neal.
Neal just shook his head and grabbed the small photo. He was shocked and confused. He had an uncle and aunt and they wanted him to live with them. He quietly gasped when he looked down at the picture. The man in the photo had the same eyes and smile as his mom. The picture was of his supposed aunt and uncle sitting on a porch swing with a yellow lab lying at their feet.
"I know, I thought you looked a lot like him also." Candace said as she gathered the rest of her papers and folders and stuffed them into her leather briefcase. "I'll be by later today. Okay Neal? Try to get some sleep. We'll figure this all out this afternoon when your uncle gets here." And with that she was gone and he was once again alone in the quiet hospital room. He wished Mozzie was with him. They had only let him see his friend once, earlier that morning just for a few minutes.
He knew Mozzie was putting on an act when he had strolled into his hospital room that morning. He had a huge grin plastered on his face but his eyes were screaming panic and worry as he reassured the kid that they were going to be fine. Towards the end of their short conversation that mostly consisted of Mozzie apologizing and encouraging the kid that this was all a good thing that had happened to them, Neal finally got up the courage and asked if they could just leave and go home together and that is when Mozzie finally let his fake façade leave his face and a pained expression took its place. "Neal, buddy, we can't go back to our home. We're in the system now and they have suits outside your door. Apparently they have a feeling we might try to leave."
After Neal had heard what Mozzie had to say he felt even more awful. Why did he have to act like such a baby and make Mozzie stay with him after they had made it to the hospital? Mozzie could have just dropped him off at the front entrance and left. But Neal knew deep down inside that Mozzie would have never left him alone. Even if he begged and pleaded for his friend to just leave him there in the Emergency Room before the suits started asking questions, Mozzie would have stayed and made sure his little companion was safe. That's how it had been for the last three years but now they were separated and Neal was never going to see his dear friend again.
Neal gripped the photo of the only family he had left with one hand and quickly wiped the tears that had finally fallen down his cheek with the other. They had a dog, so that was a plus. Why did they want him though? He had never done anything good in his short life. Did his uncle know about some of the terrible things he had done in the last few years? Things in his eyes, he had to do in order to survive but to the world they just saw a young kid breaking the law.
"Peter Burke, I hope you are ready for Neal Caffrey." He whispered as he settled down into the bed and closed his eyes. The picture of his new family clung in the young boys' hand as he finally drifted off to sleep.