Prison Break Fics
Title: Calendar Days (Leap Year)
Prompt: 07 - Days
Summary: Rule seventy-two is Don't Tell.
Originally posted: 03-04-2006
It was a Thursday when he found out how much longer it was going to be before he got to see Lincoln again. Seven and a half months. Thirty weeks. Two hundred and ten days. Five thousand and forty hours. Three hundred and two thousand, four hundred minutes. All because some idiot said something stupid and his brother just couldn't control himself enough to stop hitting him when the police showed up. He felt a little better when he thought about how much worse it could have been. The police could have grabbed him too and hauled him off to some orphanage or something. Or Lincoln could've hit one of the cops.
He was really glad Lincoln didn't hit a cop.
It was a Friday. The day after the Thursday. It was cold out and it was rainy and he huddled on the ground next to a shelled out pay phone, shaking and shivering and sniffing and crying. He had no money on him because his emergency money was in his pants and his pants were in the motel room and the only key to it was sitting in an envelope at the police department with everything else Lincoln had on him. His boxers were too short and his shirt was long and he thanked God that Lincoln didn't have his pipe on him for once.
"Mr. Manor" had a nice smile and clean, pressed clothes and a car with someone who drove it and held an umbrella for him.
Michael thought he reminded him of Batman and secretly wondered if he'd end up swinging around the city in small green shorts if he went with him.
Michael has never liked Batman much since.
Mr. Manor became Tuesdays and on Tuesday night there was always somewhere to sleep.
Wednesday was always a sewing kit and the not-Mexican girl who made her own clothes and only shook a little when she saw the blood on his back. After the first two weeks, he stopped flinching, but he always scratched afterwards, and sometimes he ripped the thread and she had to start all over again. She would always curse at him in some other language and he would always squeeze the same Barbie pillow to his chest and try not to make any noise as the needle pierced his flesh once more.
Thursdays through Sundays had no definitive pattern. Sometimes, if he was unlucky enough, he made enough in only a few hours to get a room for the next day so he could sleep. He always felt oddly ashamed when he had to ask one of the others near the park to get him a room. They would always give him a look and sometimes they would ask how old he was. He never told. There's something about getting pity from a nineteen-year-old with a crack habit and three kids that made part of him die a little on the inside.
He learned quickly that if you act like a child sometimes the right people would overlook you and the wrong people would do more.
One Friday, he was able to get the same room for three whole days. He threw up and cried and went and "found" someone else to come and sleep on the bed while he slept on the floor. The other boy was nice and he never tried anything, and even gave Michael his jacket. Years later, by sheer dumb luck, he met the other boy again and found a way to repay him.
On the eighth Monday he met Officer Friendly, which was his real name ironically enough, and was almost arrested. He learned about "gratuities" and perfected the art of not gagging or vomiting no matter how badly he wanted to. One time he noticed a wedding band on Officer Friendly's hand and absently wondered if he had any children. The thought terrified him so badly that he spent the next four days combing the phonebook and making calls until he found out.
The twelfth Thursday was a bad day. Mr. Manor had decided to keep him a day longer than usual and he didn't really have any choice but to say yes. He hadn't wanted to think about what would have happened if he had said no. When all was said and done, Mr. Manor dropped him off at the same corner as always. He was tired and he hurt and his shirt was wet even though it wasn't raining.
He blacked out shortly afterwards and when he woke up the first time he was being half-dragged down the street by the not-Mexican girl, whose name he had already learned was Lupe. He was only conscious long enough to wonder why she sounded so scared before he blacked out again. The next time he regained consciousness he was in Lupe's room. Instead of a Barbie pillow, though, this time his arms were up and over some other boy's neck and he barely had the energy or willpower to move, much less flinch when he felt the skin on his back tug and pull. The other boy said his name was Fernie and he rubbed Michael's arm and talked to him and didn't seem to mind at all when his shirt got soaked with tears.
Lupe said he could stay with them for a few more days while he healed. Michael slept in the closet so their mother wouldn't find out and snuck out during the third night because he didn't want to burden them anymore.
He went back again the next Wednesday like usual and Fernie quickly replaced the Barbie pillow. Michael suddenly didn't mind Tuesdays as much because on Wednesdays Fernie would talk to him for hours on end and it almost made him feel like he was a real person like everyone else.
Wednesdays became Michael's favorite day of the week and was the only thing that kept him going some days. Wednesday morning, he'd make his way through the park and around the people and past the tweakers and almost all the way up to the apartment building before the pain made his legs start to shake. He'd spend a few hours leaning against Fernie while Lupe cut and stitched and sewed and re-stitched his back and sides and occasionally a limb or two here or there. Afterward, Lupe would get up and go scrub her hands with bleach while he and Fernie would remain sitting on the old and battered mattress in silence.
Wednesday afternoons, he and Fernie would always do something. Occasionally, one of them would pay for tickets and they would go and see a movie in an actual theater, but more often than not "something" would consist of getting McDonald's and relaxing in whatever room Michael had that night.
Thirteen Wednesdays later was a Thursday and on that Thursday he got the news. Apparently, someone who knew someone who knew someone who knew Fernie's mother saw the two of them at the movies and told Fernie told him he was being sent to live with his aunt in another state because his mother didn't want him "associating with boys like that." Michael didn't have to ask what she meant, he knew all the kinds of "that" he was.
For the next three weeks, he existed as a zombie and counted down the seconds until he could feel human again.
Twenty-eight Sundays and twenty-nine Mondays after that first Thursday, a girl he knew gave him a ride and he hugged his brother and told him he loved him and never once mentioned a single word about a single one of the eighteen million, one hundred and forty-four thousand seconds since he saw him last.
He never mentioned anything about any of the other times, either.
~ ~ ~ ~
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