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[personal profile] comeoutwrong

"What are you thinking about."

Effy was quickly yanked out of her thoughts, and she blinked herself back into the present, the cold white walls of David Foster’s office reforming around her. "My brother,” she answered honestly after a few seconds.

"What are you thinking about him?" Doctor Foster was nothing if not persistent, wasn’t he? Her earlier psychologists had a similar trait about them. Always asking questions, always keeping the focus on her... She hated that.

"Nothing." And she’d been trying to treat him just as she had them, to a wall of silence.

Foster forged onwards. "Something happened to him. Didn't it?"

Effy huffed a light breath, and shook her head. "Lots of things happened to him,” she agreed, purposely misunderstanding. “He was born nearly a month late. He won a poetry competition when he was eight and met Sarah Ferguson. He got the highest mark for a first year essay in Cardiff's history."

"And somewhere in there, he was hit by a bus, and nearly killed, right?" Right. Thanks for the reminder, Doc. "Why don't you tell me about that."

"Why that?" she wondered, frowning. “Why not the good stuff?"

"Because I'm not interested in it." At least he was honest, right? That was something positive to say about him. "Tell me what happened to your brother, Elizabeth. From the start."

From the start. Like that was so fucking easy.

For a long while, all Foster was going to get was silence. Why make it too easy on the guy trying to get her to spill all about the worst day of her life. Bar none.

“Close your eyes,” he advised. “Imagine I’m not even here.”

Reluctantly, Effy took a breath, and closed her eyes, fully intending to just sit there with her eyes shut until it was time to go. Except... she didn’t.

Or didn’t just do that, anyway.

Her words came hesitantly, and her usual clipped sentences seemed even shorter than usual somehow... and then, strangely enough, it began to flow a little easier. She kept her eyes closed, and started with the simplest details. What he’d been wearing, where they’d been going. All that.

It was only when when it came to the worst part of that memory that her nerves began to show in a quickening of her breathing, her words becoming a little less carefully chosen. "I can see the bus. It's coming towards him...” Effy hesitated, screwing up her eyes at the memory. “He's concentrating on something else, so he doesn't see it. And then it hits him. Runs him over. He's in the gutter. Bleeding... It looks like he's dead. I can remember screaming." After that, her memory was fuzzier, the panic

"Well done, Elizabeth. It's taken you three weeks to tell me that story… How do you feel?"

Effy scowled at him, answering with an exceptionally truthful, "Awful."

"I want you to close your eyes again, and pretend that bus never hit Tony. Pretend it never happened."

"... But it did."

"It's just an exercise,” Foster reassured her. Nothing suspicious about that.

"Just close your eyes again... Now picture that. What do you see?"

She hesitantly closed her eyes again, falling back into that replay she’d seen before, forcing herself to remember it different. There was no bus. No bus. "Tony standing by the road,” she murmured eventually. “Happy. He's laughing."

Foster smiled, nodding. "Good, Elizabeth. That's very good,” he said, tucking his pen into the fold of his papers. “I think you’re ready to leave here.”

Effy’s head twitched up and she stared at him. “What?”

“You can go home,” he repeated. “Away from here.”

There were a couple of moments where she worked his words through in her head. For all she’d hoped she’d get out of here... the prospect of it offered to her like that was scary. "So I just go home? That's it."

"Back to whatever you were going to do before this all happened." Like it was that fucking easy. "But no alcohol. No drugs. Stick to your regime, and you should be fine."

[[Most dialogue taken from Skins 4x07 "Effy". In my head, Foster's involvement ends here... Yes.]]


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Elizabeth Stonem

October 2012

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