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Summary: The evolution of Miss Parker and Jarod’s phone conversations after their escapade on Carthis.
December 17th, 2001
"What?" Miss Parker answered the electronic ring of her cell phone in a sleep-hazed voice, after groping around in the dark for it.
"Have you found any answers yet?" Jarod’s voice was soft and inquisitive, just as it had been a week ago when he’d called after their adventure on Carthis.
Miss Parker leaned over and switched on the lamp next to her bed, sitting up with a deep sigh. "I’m beginning to think there are no real answers; not any that I’ll find anyway."
Something in their phone conversations had evolved. They no longer taunted each other with bitter words. It seemed, for once, that they were actually talking.
"If there weren’t any real answers, they wouldn’t be working so hard to stop us from finding them."
"Do you think we’ll ever find the whole truth, Jarod? Or will we spend the rest of our lives searching, picking up breadcrumbs here and there?"
"I don’t know." He paused. "But I know the truth we’re looking for is out there somewhere and, as long as it is, I’ll be looking for it."
The line was silent for a moment. "Any trace of your mother?" Miss Parker asked softly.
There was a pause. "Not yet. But, I’ll find her and, when I do, I’ll have everything they’re hoping I won’t ever know."
"And, what about the scrolls?"
Another pause. "They hold the key to our past. I’m as certain of that as I am that the Centre doesn’t want us to have them."
Miss Parker sighed and brushed her fingers over a rose sitting on her side table. "We held my- Mr. Parker’s- funeral a few days ago."
"I know. I visited the graveside after everyone left. I’m sorry, Miss Parker," Jarod said sympathetically.
A tear slipped down her cheek and she wiped it away slowly, smiling sadly. "Another empty Parker grave." Her smile slipped away. "They never found his body."
"Well, wherever he is, he took any answers he had with him."
"Raines and Lyle told the Triumvirate that you stole the scrolls. They’ve stepped up their search for you."
"Back to normal." Jarod sighed deeply.
"Only, this time, the first one to the answers lives," Miss Parker replied softly. "Jarod, if we ever do find all of the answers, the truth about who we are, maybe our story will finally change.
"I’m counting on it."
The line went dead and Miss Parker flipped her cell phone shut, turning it over in her hands before bringing it to her face and pressing her lips against it softly.
Flicking off the lamp at her side, she put her cell phone back on the side table and curled up under her comforter, her arms wrapped around a pillow. Despite what she knew she had to face the next day, she slept peacefully, the rose on her nightstand caught in a sliver of moonlight.
The flower had come from a bunch that had arrived at the Centre from an anonymous source expressing their sympathies over Mr. Parker’s death. There was no doubt that the anonymous source had been Jarod.
The flowers had been sent off to the lab for analysis while Broots tracked down the delivery company. When Miss Parker had returned to her office, a single red bud had been sitting on her desk. Looking around, she had seen eyes gleaming back at her from the air vent. "Thank you, Angelo." She wasn’t sure if he had smiled or not but she knew he had crawled off through the air ducts now that she had received the gift.
That night, she had taken the bud home and placed it in a small vase next to her bed. Several days later, as she slept, it had bloomed.
Author’s Note: It’s been ages since I’ve posted anything so, I figured I’d send everyone a little gift to mark the occasion of my birthday on Monday. There is a companion piece to this story, however, it is sadly unfinished. Hopefully, I’ll have both the time and inclination to work on it soon. Thank you for reading.