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They weren't lying when they said "Welcome to Hell"...

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They weren't lying when they said "Welcome to Hell"...

Post by Orion Pierce on Sun Jul 31, 2011 8:25 pm

Orion couldn't remember a day in his life where he was as pissed off as he was now. Sure, there had been the day he threw the bottle as his dad's head, or the time when his little sister broke his PS3 and got away with it scot-free. Orion smiled at that thought a little bit as he dragged his suitcase through the hallway lazily. Of course she didn't get off free, though. He thought. I definitely gave her what was coming to her in the end after Mom refused to do anything about it. He always found a way to get people back for anything they did, in the end. Whether it did him any justice in the end or not, it always gave him the small sliver of time where he felt satisfactory.

Like always, his day had started off like shit. Orion woke up and immediately regretted it, not like that was a rare occurrence anyways. Today was the day he was being shipped off to some place he had never even fucking heard of. Saint Christina's in Green Ridge. Orion would have rather spent the whole week being beaten on by his dad than go to some place for nut cases. He had no idea why they were even sending him there in the first. Not true, of course. He knew exactly why they were shipping him for months on his own, because they were sick of him. Everyone gets sick of him in the end, really, but to have your own parents just throw you away like that could make the calmest person in the world be pissed as shit.

Orion quit stomping down the corridor, baggage in tow, when he reached a door that read 'A2'. He looked down at the tiny, white slip of paper in his hand and then back up at the door. Groaning, he jerkily ripped open the door, marched in without even caring to see if anyone else was in the room, and threw his suitcase and duffle bag down at the foot of a ratty bed that had a little signed above the headboard that said 'Bed 4'. Letting himself fall to his knees in front of his large, grey suitcase, he unzipped it and began to rummage through it, throwing out any of the articles of clothing that got in his way. Orion stopped when he had found what he was searching for, a grubby grey beanie, and threw all of the items that had gotten onto the floor back into his suitcase.

Pulling the knitted hat over his unkept, dark brown hair, he rolled up the sleeves of his dark red and charcoal black flannel and threw himself onto the bed and the worn piece of furniture creaked and groaned as he situated himself with his legs out stretched in front of him and his back leaning against the headboard. Orion sat, staring at the wall opposite of him with a blank look in his blue and hazel eyes. The place was pretty unworn from what he could tell. He crinkled his nose in disgusted and pulled his knees up to his chest, wrapping his arms around his legs.

A part of him wanted someone else to enter the room and be stuck in an infinite boredom with him, but the other half wanted to be left alone... forever. He thought about sitting on this bed for the rest of his life and rotting there. It actually seemed better than being at home, but that wasn't surprising in the least considering almost everywhere was better than at home. The thought about home made him thinking about his mom and felt an unfamiliar emptiness in his stomach. Orion would never admit to caring about his mother, but sometimes he thought she was the only person he actually did care about, which didn't make sense considering all of the crap he has put her through. Right now, all he wanted to do was go home and see his mother. He hugged his legs closer to his chest and tried to remember what her hug from this morning had felt like before she sent him off to this crackhouse.
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Re: They weren't lying when they said "Welcome to Hell"...

Post by Michael Courtenay on Mon Aug 01, 2011 11:17 pm

It had been two months since Michael first came to St. Christina’s, and he thought he adjusted pretty well considering the circumstances. Michael didn’t think he was very good at dealing with sudden change, but now, he knew he must’ve gotten better at it… because he wouldn’t be so okay if it weren’t true. The fourteen-year-old’s life had pretty much changed on a complete 180 degree spin in the course of a single month. He truly lived a nice, sheltered life that was taken up mostly by trying to make his mother happy, pining for a father that he didn’t know back then, cleaning, getting beat up by various bullies and baseball. But two days before the first week in May, his mom lost her job and she gave him up to the Michigan foster system after sending herself to rehab. Michael took this as ‘giving him up’, and he was so upset that he wasn’t thinking of the possibility that Evie Courtenay just wanted to improve herself (kicking her alcoholism, getting a job) before she could be the mother she wanted to be. After being placed in a youth home, making the decision to quit the team because he was too emotional, having a nervous breakdown that landed him three days in a mental hospital (again) and was put in the youth home for the second time, Michael had received his application for St. Christina’s through his psychologist, Dr. Ivanova. And here he was now- this was his third hospitalization, and his longest.

Michael remembered that when he first arrived, he was a wreck. At the sight of an empty A2, he threw his bags on the second bed and ran off in frenzied panic, got lost and cried as he sank against a tree. It was a good thing that he met Andry, because the older boy really did do wonders to help him calm down. Nate and Connor, his roommates, were nice enough to him, and unlike Michael’s previous roommates in mental hospitals, they didn’t scream and jump around until they had to be sedated for Michael asking what their goldfish’s name was. And they changed their socks, which was always a plus. In the afternoon, he met Talon as he was organizing books. After the two boys had met, they had instantly grown so close that they called each other brothers. It didn’t matter if Talon and Michael weren’t related by blood- they were brothers, and they needed each other. Michael silently wondered if Talon would be proud of him if he told him that he’d officially gotten used to the facility.

The smaller boy couldn’t help but smile at that thought as he lay on top of his bed, staring at the ceiling. It hadn’t occurred to Michael that he was alone in the room- he assumed that Connor was under the bed, like usual. If he knew he was alone, he would have already been running down the halls trying to find Talon as he tried desperately not to spiral into an anxiety attack. Had he not had one single anxiety attack since he arrived? Maybe Talon would be proud of him for that too!

Michael heard a groan through the door, and he immediately sat up. He wanted to greet whoever was in the hallway, but before he could move a muscle, the door had already knocked against the wall with a loud crash to reveal a boy he’d never seen before. He flinched as a tiny, nervous whimper escaped his teeth. Just when Michael wordlessly prayed to God that this angry new boy wasn’t who he thought he was, his suspicions were confirmed when a suitcase was placed on the last bed. He watched the boy silently as his heart made rapid, pounding thuds.

Michael’s new roommate looked to be around his age, well, a normal person his age at least. Due to a growth hormone deficiency that wasn’t formally diagnosed, Michael had always appeared to be three years younger than he actually was. He had the face, voice and body of your average eleven-year-old, which made him an extremely easy target for bullies. He hoped that this new boy wouldn’t pick up on that… although it was very hard not to.

Michael watched as the boy began furiously and carelessly unpacking his suitcase, trying not to make his anxiety obvious by hyperventilating. He had to look away and grip his shirt with clenched fists as he saw that the boy was just discarding his items on the floor. He bit his lip and turned away from the scene. If there was one thing Michael Courtenay couldn’t stand, it was a messy room. His OCD was almost physically pulling him towards the fourth bed and pick up the clothes that were being thrown. ‘No!’ He told himself, as if speaking to a misbehaving puppy. ‘Touching other peoples’ things isn’t nice! He’ll kill you if you go too close! Bad! Bad mental patient!’

For reasons that he couldn’t comprehend, Michael took a glance back at where he was originally looking, and let out a huge, relieved exhalation. ‘He’s cleaning it up. Okay. Breathe.’ He let go of his shirt as he tried to breathe steadily and saw that the boy was laying on his bed. Now he was officially confused. The new boy came in with such explosive anger, and after that seemed indifferent and uncaring of the world. Was he bipolar?! The boy’s seeming disconnectedness hadn’t at all diminished Michael’s fear of him.

Just when Michael thought the boy couldn’t undergo another rapid change, he hugged his knees to his chest. That was a position that was all-too familiar to Michael- whenever he cried, which was more frequently than he would like, he hugged his legs to his chest and cried in his knees. He was emotional too when he first arrived at the facility- he guessed that everyone had their own ways of dealing with stepping foot into a new long-term facility… and that didn’t make it any less hard.

Michael’s shoulders sank as his gray-green eyes became filled with sympathy, which was a change from the overwhelming fear he felt from a second ago. He felt guilty that he figuratively slapped a label on the boy's forehead as someone he wanted to avoid... without making an effort to get to know him. He wanted to say something to his new roommate, to offer whatever he could to make the boy’s arrival a little easier- Talon, Andry, Nate and Connor had done the same for him on his first day. Michael gulped, then sat on the edge of the bed that faced Bed Four.

“You probably don’t want to talk to me,” Michael offered gently, bringing to light the possibility. “It’s hard for anyone who’s first arriving. I’m sorry you’re suffering so much. If I was that angry I wouldn’t know what I’d do- I don’t actually know how to be angry… well, properly.”

Michael didn’t move from the second bed because he was afraid that if he got to close, he’d get hit or screamed at. He figured it was best to know the other boy’s reaction to his words first.

“I think I’m finally used to this place, and it took me two months, but I bet it would have been longer if I hadn’t met anyone here. Once you meet people you trust, it’s not so bad.”

He paused for a moment, and then gave a warm smile he wasn’t certain the boy could see. “What’s your name? I’m Michael.”
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Re: They weren't lying when they said "Welcome to Hell"...

Post by Orion Pierce on Tue Aug 02, 2011 2:34 am

This is so fucking stupid. My parents are so stupid. Orion thought angrily as he squeezed his arms tighter to his chest. I'm so stupid. His knees dug deep into his chest and it was almost beginning to hurt. Mind only concentrated on one thing, he began drum his fingers on his upper arm, a nervous habit he had had since he was around six. His heart was pounding in his chest quickly and he knew he was going to have an outburst if he didn't stop thinking about his family and calm. Taking a deep breath, Orion closed his eyes and let his head fall back a bit quickly onto the headboard. The soft spot where his neck met his skull hit dully and he flung his head back again after muttering a couple of profanities under his breath.

Upon smacking his head on the bastard of a headboard, Orion had been broken out of his small sort of trance to see a boy who looked rather young sitting on the edge of the bed in front of him. Rubbing his sore neck, Orion inspected the boy in front of him thoughtfully. He looked about ten or eleven years old, Orion had guessed, but the facility required you be over the age of thirteen, so he had to be thirteen at the most, right?

“You probably don’t want to talk to me. It’s hard for anyone who’s first arriving. I’m sorry you’re suffering so much. If I was that angry I wouldn’t know what I’d do- I don’t actually know how to be angry… well, properly.”

At first, Orion had been a bit shocked to hear the boy talk to him considering he actually looked very shy, but his surprise had been quickly wiped away and turned into complete annoyance. Orion was almost immediately flushed with the desire to punch the kid right then and there, but he contained himself. I'm sorry you're suffering so much. Orion mocked in a high pictured voice to himself. The kid made him sound like a pansy, as far as he was concerned. Orion wasn't 'suffering' at all. Well, maybe being pissed as hell is suffering.

Letting the boy finish his empty little speech, Orion waited until he was finished with his rambling. Orion realized he still had tight grip of his knees, so he instantly let his arms fall limply to his sides and his knees sprawled out in front of him once more. Orion hesitated a little bit before responding, his eyes still locked on the boy who had just introduced himself as Michael. He actually felt a bit bad for the kid considering he had just tried to smile at him. Finally deciding that Michael would probably be just an annoyance and not a threat, Orion acquainted himself.

"I would like you to know that I'm not suffering, thanks," He snapped and shot a glare at Michael before pausing and then saying a bit kinder, "I'm Orion."

He just sat there for a little bit, still not breaking his stare from the person in front of him. Might as a well have a little bit of fun with this. He thought and stood from the bed quickly. Hand outstretched in front of him, Orion advanced towards Michael with a faint smirk playing upon his lips. This kid was obviously uneasy about Orion, he could tell from the way Michael had been talking to him when he had decided to stop creepily watching him. Orion thought it would be funny to see whether Michael would hesitate nervously like the person Orion already assumed he was, or shake his hand without a pause.
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Re: They weren't lying when they said "Welcome to Hell"...

Post by Michael Courtenay on Tue Aug 02, 2011 11:42 pm

Michael watched the other boy drum his fingers on his arm as if he were playing a wind instrument. It looked like a kind of anxious habit- Michael had plenty of those. He chewed the sleeves of his long-sleeved shirts, and they were thus frayed at the ends. He gripped his shirt at the chest level. He bit his lip, and with all of his anxiety, probably would have developed a nail-biting thing too if he weren’t a pitcher. Pitchers always had to have short nails because if they let them grow out, the nail could grow inwardly and cause pain while throwing. So, Michael never had any nails to bite. Alan, the catcher during the time when he was on the baseball team, was always making sure that Michael was cutting his nails. Michael took Alan’s bossiness and need for control as caring about him, due to his naivety. Michael wasn’t very good at spotting other people’s bad qualities- he often only saw the good.

He cringed at the sound of the boy smacking the back of his head against the headboard. Michael realized that the other boy was the one who got hurt and that flinching at such a quiet sound was ridiculous, but sudden sounds of any kind startled him at the very least. That’s why he had to be socially forced to watch scary movies- the images caused him nightmares, and the sounds made him jump. But of course, he wasn’t about to tell this to his new roommate- unless of course he asked. It wasn’t the sort of thing you told anyone, except maybe Talon. He could tell Talon anything.

Michael wondered who this boy actually was. All he knew of him now was that he was angry, and currently dealing with bucket-loads of the emotion. He didn’t know how old he was, or where he came from, or what led him to St. Christina’s… he didn’t even know his name. Michael genuinely wanted to know, and despite his fear, wanted to be his friend. He wouldn’t have minded telling this new roommate of his anything he wanted to know about himself, but he knew that the boy may have a harder time with such revelations, if he wanted to get to know Michael at all. There was always the possibility of this new boy simply putting up with him just to not have security on his back, which was fine too. Michael knew he was hard to deal with because of anxiety, so it was completely understandable.

Michael cringed at the boy suddenly speaking with such growling animosity in his voice. “I-I-I’m sorry!” Michael silently berated himself for having his stutter come back at a time like this. He got over stuttering in every sentence with a lot of speech therapy at age ten, but it sometimes came back when he was especially nervous. He tried to break down what he had said earlier- he didn’t think his words were insulting or condescending. If they were, he certainly hadn’t meant them to be. His OCD had yet again beat him senseless for his crime by chronicling this instance to his Hurting People list.

‘You were bad.’
‘You were bad.’
‘You were bad.’
‘You were bad.’
‘You were bad.’
‘You were bad on July 31st, 2011.’
‘You don’t know what you did, but that’s no excuse!’
‘This guy’s mad at you now!’
‘Do you want to die?’
‘You were bad.’

When he noticed the glare, Michael shrank further back. “I-I’m sorry. Really. I didn’t mean to do it.” Michael didn’t know what ‘it’ was, but if he told the other boy that he didn’t know, he might get even angrier with him! He was about to apologize again, when the boy introduced himself.

Orion. What an awesome name! Although, if Michael told him that now, he may have just took it as being a kiss-ass. Everyone in St. Christina’s seemed to have outrageous, amazing names: Talon, Andry, Orion…

Besides his name, Michael was amazed that Orion was making such an effort to make his voice a little gentler even though Michael accidently offended him. He couldn’t have been the heartless, hateful gargoyle that he portrayed himself to be… right? This simple act of introducing himself and trying to tone down his voice had proved that.

As Orion advanced, Michael couldn’t help himself from assuming the worst. He was on edge from before, so he assumed that Orion was going to beat him up or something. But his look of panic instantly became replaced by excitement and a sincere smile when Orion extended his hand. Michael gave it a good, friendly shake without hesitation, then let go when appropriate. He didn’t want to make the same mistake of holding on too long like he did with Andry.

“So how old are you? I’m guessing fourteen or fifteen.” Micheal said, trying to force himself not to ask Orion too many questions… he knew he’d get hit that way. “Did you just come here, or were you transferred from a different ward?”
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Re: They weren't lying when they said "Welcome to Hell"...

Post by Orion Pierce on Wed Aug 03, 2011 12:25 am

Hearing this kid beg for forgiveness was actually kind of funny, in Orion's perspective. They always looked so idiotic and easy to please when they begged. Why would anyone want to be like that? He thought and made a disgusted face. Michael looked like he was going to hyperventilate. Sometimes Orion looked like that, when he was about to go into a rage, but way less vulnerable and scared and way more pissed off and violent. Part of him wanted to egg this kid on into a more serious panic attack, but the other part felt like he could kind of relate to the kid and kind of felt bad for him. Bullshit, you don't feel bad for anyone.

Orion was taken aback when Michael shook his hand with this insanely goofy smile. He looked like a kid on Christmas morning and it made Orion wanted to laugh right in his stupid little face, but he didn't. All I did was shake your god forsaken hand.

He pulled his fingers apart, letting his knuckles pop, as Michael asked him a bunch of stupid questions about himself. The boy really did seem very eager to make friends and that was both funny and annoying to Orion. Not knowing whether to sit down on Bed 4- You're going to have to call it 'your bed' sooner or later- or not, he continued to stand with arms now crossed in front of Michael.

"I'm fourteen. You look like you're ten years old," He responded a bit coldly, but not even purposely, "You're pretty squirrelly." Orion stared right at Michael, not knowing whether to answer his question about arriving here. It wasn't a personal or intrusive question at all, but something about it bothered him. Probably because it reminded him that he was, oh yeah, definitely at a nut house, but he couldn't really be sure.

After a bit longer of staring down Michael, Orion said, "I just arrived." He decided on being very short with Michael, maybe that would shut him up. Orion didn't plan on asking him any questions at all, because he frankly didn't care whether this kid was some depressed whiny baby or some psychopathic ten year old serial killer, which he probably wasn't because he obviously lacked any form of balls or bravery. Michael looked like he would pee all over himself just at the sight of a pistol or pocket knife.

Orion grew bored from standing, so he walked a little bit around the small room. There was just some beds and a desk, the basics for a low funded building. "This place is fucking horrible," He thought out loud and crinkled his nose. Absentmindedly, he rubbed the still sore spot on his neck and walked back over to his suitcase. Everything he wanted to use right now had been taken away when he had been searched upon entering the grounds. Orion hadn't smoked a joint in a couple of days and he was really itching to now that he remembered it.

Feeling a little defeated, he sat down on the edge of his bed and turned back to glare at Michael. This kid looked so easily to beat the crap out of, but Orion didn't really have a set and stone reason to yet, so he decided he should sit back and let Michael do that all for him.
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Re: They weren't lying when they said "Welcome to Hell"...

Post by Michael Courtenay on Wed Aug 03, 2011 11:02 pm

Michael saw Orion’s look of disgust crystal clearly, and unintentionally kept doing what the other boy detested. He inched backward, his hands moving to grip his shirt in a desperate and futile attempt to create an invisible barrier between the two of them. Michael could feel his breathing become quick and choppy as his eyes bulged slightly, filled with fear.

He wondered what exactly he did to Orion to make him so angry. Michael knew that whenever he allowed himself to be angry, a rare occurrence, it was for consistent and deranged forms of psychological abuse. Whoever he was angry at would have to purposely try to make him angry. They would have to do something along the lines of abandoning him when he needed them most (his father), assuming that he was capable of rape and screaming at him about not controlling his OCD while also taking great lengths to alienate him from the family (his step-mother), capitalizing on his weakness (his step-sisters), or ostracizing a person/group of people just for being the way they were (intolerant/bigoted people). He wasn’t even angry at Alan, who hated him at the moment and who controlled him while they were friends. He wasn’t even mad at his mother for abandoning him, but he did want to want to just break down crying whenever he thought of her. So, in short, someone would need to play some pretty messed up mental games in order for Michael to drop the whole nervous-mouse, internal locus of control thing and blame someone else for their actions. Or they would need to do something to Talon Rogers.

Through mapping out his own requirements for anger, Michael still didn’t have the slightest clue as to why Orion was so mad. Usually, Michael was micro-aware of the things that he did to hurt people and blew the situation out of proportion. The person he thought he offended often said, ‘Dude, what are you apologizing for? Why would XYZ make me mad?’ Orion, on the other hand, was aware of why he was angry at Michael while the smaller boy wasn’t… it was an entirely new feeling, and Michael didn’t like it one bit. It made him even more paranoid than he was when Orion first burst into the room.

But when Orion offered to shake his hand, Michael’s expression changed. He was so happy that Orion wasn’t trying to kill him, but was making a slight effort to get to know him. At least that’s how it seemed to Michael. What Orion said next took him completely off guard.

“I'm fourteen. You look like you're ten years old,"

Of course, this wasn’t news, but Michael wasn’t really expecting anything so abrupt and brash. He responded to this by being silent, then looked down and blushed. Michael already knew what had been pointed out- throughout his life, he consistently appeared to be three years younger than he was, which worked out great for the bullies of Graveraft Middle School. He’d been bullied by, generally, the same group of kids since forever. In elementary school, it was because he stuttered for every word, and in middle school, it was because he didn’t look his age. He wondered what they would make fun of him for in high school if he stayed in Marquette. Probably the same thing as middle school.

“U-Um, well, I’m actually your age… believe it or not…” He chuckled nervously.

"You're pretty squirrelly."

Michael blushed wordlessly at this too, because it was true, and there was nothing that he could really say. ‘And you’re pretty intimidating?’ He was sure to get hit if he uttered that aloud…

The smaller boy fidgeted uncomfortably on his spot on the bed as Orion stared at him. Was that a bad question to ask? Then, Orion answered him. ‘So he just came here,’ Michael thought to himself. ‘No wonder he’s so angry…’ Although, when Michael first came to the facility, he cried and was close to an anxiety attack. But he figured everyone had their own way of dealing with it.

He watched Orion wander around the room once he got bored. Michael wasn’t a walking DSMV-IV, but he was trying his best to map out Orion’s issues. Maybe then he’d understand him better. He had an anger problem… that was for sure, but Michael wasn’t so sure that was a mental disorder.

"This place is fucking horrible,"

Michael smiled cheerfully at that. “It’s really not so bad once you get used to it. I mean, I didn’t like it when I first came here either, but I met some people I trusted and that helped me out a lot.”

He hoped that he didn’t sound dismissive, so he added: “But yeah, when you first get here, it’s hard.”

Michael saw the intense glare, and the panic came back. He leaned backward, away from Orion’s direction, and bit his lip as he visibly trembled. If there was so much animosity between the two of them… what would the remaining months that they were sure to be stuck at the facility for be like?
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Re: They weren't lying when they said "Welcome to Hell"...

Post by Orion Pierce on Thu Aug 04, 2011 12:22 am

A part of him wanted to tell Michael to shut up for laughing about what he had said about his appearance. "I'm not joking," He countered bluntly. This kid was as twitchy and nervous as a bunny and he looked pretty stupid to have the whole 'I'm about to have aneurism' look constantly plastered over his face. Seeing Michael reminded Orion of the time Timothy and him had accidentally killed a rabbit down by the river. Grimacing, Orion immediately tried to think of something else. Something about that stupid bunny always made him feel uneasy. That memory was one of his most vivid memories, except for one of his dad's particular 'lessons'. That definitely had to be the reason why I hate that stupid bunny. Orion thought. Because it reminds me of that time with my dad.

Saying that Orion had a bad relationship with his dad was a complete understatement. They absolutely loathed each other, and it was completely obvious to anyone who saw them interact together. It had always been like that, actually, the constant rockiness between them and the arguing 24/7. Orion rubbed the left side of his stomach and his hand strayed there for just a couple of extra seconds before he retracted his hand sharply. His ribs still ached from time to time, usually after he had just physically exerted himself or when he was fumingly angry. It was the constant reminder that Dad would always be there to try and set him straight, but it never really restrained him from doing something he knew he shouldn't.

Bringing himself back to the present, Orion heard Michael tell him that he just had to get used to Saint Christina's and he immediately swiveled on his heal to give Michael a menacing sneer. "I don't want to get used to this hellhole, you fucking idiot," He spat and continued, "Jesus Christ, aren't you stupid." He clenched his fingers into two tight fists. Why would anyone in their right mind want to get used to this place? I don't give two shits if I have to stay here for a year, I'm not getting used to this place.

He tried to calm himself down, but he just couldn't. Heart pounding, Orion could feel his face going red and he could feel his teeth grinding. Orion's left side of his ribcage started to throb, but he tried to aimlessly ignore it. Never one to really think about the consequences, Orion was ready to go and rip his stupid, elevan-year-old-looking head off, but he was restraining himself with all his might. How could this kid just say you had to get used to something you were randomly thrusted in? That would take months, probably even a year because Orion was so damn stubborn. He was just about to charge the little brat when he remembered his mom and if there was one thing he knew, it was that she wouldn't want him to thrash this midget kid on his first day. Squeezing his fists tighter, his short nails dug into the soft skin of his palm and a small trickle of blood rolled down his right hand from the small cutting the he had caused. He needed a way to release his anger, now. Seeing the only thing in site, the leg of a big wooden desk, Orion kicked it as hard as he could while muttering, "Fuck you, Michael." A sharp pain shot up from his left foot all the way up to his hip, but he didn't show any sign of pain, because that was when you were attacked, so you had to show no sign of vulnerability.

After half limping back to his bed and throwing himself on it, Orion just glared at Michael. "You're a real piece of work, Michael, honest. A real classy, guy, you know that?" There he was. Sitting there on his stupid little bed making his stupid anxious face. "Have you ever got the shit beaten out of you, Michael?" Orion blurted out with no real tone in his voice. "I have, and I want you to fucking feel what it feels like." He was never really one to verbally taunt someone before he blew up on someone and he didn't even know why he was doing it now, but it was all just spewing out of him.

There was something about Michael that just made him so pissed off. Orion didn't even know what it was, but as soon as the boy had started talking to him Orion had wanted to beat the living crap out of him. Michael just looked so nervous all the goddamn time and it made Orion want to scream with anger. "Why are you like that? Why do you always look like you're going to crap it your fucking Pampers pull-ups?" Orion asked him and he started to drum his fingers on his thighs, once again.
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Re: They weren't lying when they said "Welcome to Hell"...

Post by Michael Courtenay on Thu Aug 04, 2011 1:52 am

Michael visibly flinched at the sound of Orion shouting. ‘Okay… maybe that was the wrong thing to say.’ He was shaking in panic now, trying to figure out what to do. He could feel it coming on- an anxiety attack. Just when he said that he hadn’t fell into any yet in his stay at the facility- perhaps he jinxed himself. He was so close… leaning on the edge. The signs were all there: his heart was pounding fast against his rib cage, his body was trembling, his breathing was quickening, the room was starting to spin and ‘Am I going crazy? Am I losing it?’ repeated in his mind over and over again. He tightened his grip on his shirt- this kid was dangerously close to beating him up. Michael, truthfully, hadn’t been beaten since he was in school. He came close when he went to the youth home- Butch, a guy thrown into the foster care system after just getting out of juvie, would have squashed him like a grape if Jorge hadn’t been there.

He saw Orion’s fists clenched, and he knew that it had started. Michael truthfully had been hit so many times by various bullies that he could almost tell what all of them did before he unintentionally pushed them over the edge. Everyone had their own signs, but two tightly clenched fists was one of the universal hints, along with getting red in the face and tightening the jaw. The ‘I am literally one step away from beating the shit out of you’ signs that he’d observed in the past were almost comprehensive in Orion. He saw almost all of them, and he knew right then that he was going to die.

‘Okay… okay… I need to breathe. If I randomly freak out, it’ll leave me more vulnerable than I already am. Just… breathe.’ Michael tried his best to slow his breathing down, but wasn’t taking obvious deep breaths as if he were meditating. His eyes were still locked on Orion, and just when he was sort-of-almost calm, Orion kicked the leg of the desk and that made a sharp, concise, loud noise. Of course, Michael jumped and his heartbeat quickened as his breath did too. And then, once he heard Orion speak, stopped dead as his stomach became an empty hole. In all honesty, he really was trying his best to understand Orion, and to maybe offer a friendship that, given his issues, probably would be hard to come by at his time in the hospital. Orion scared him to bits, and that was obvious, but he was trying his hardest… and this is what he got for it? Suddenly, Michael admitted to himself that he was angry, and that was only conveyed through a look of shock. Though, he only could truly feel anger for a few seconds before it was either stored away or changed into another emotion- this is what he’d done his entire life. And anger swiftly became sadness.

What did I do to you?” Michael asked in a mousy voice as he started crying. He hadn’t meant to- it came in a burst, a nervous sob. He hid the lower half of his face with his right long sleeve, in an attempt to hide himself. “Why are you so mean?”

Michael hadn’t really given any thought to Orion’s next few words- it was just sarcasm, mocking fury. He’d heard lots of words like that in the past, as the wrestling team and others who tormented him during school cornered him. Michael was extremely susceptible to mental games and taunting- he had no defense for that just like he had no defense for the physical stuff. Michael was as easy to break down as any kid half his age- it was just that easy, and that’s probably why they bullied him for so long. That’s probably why Orion was so-

"Have you ever got the shit beaten out of you, Michael? I have, and I want you to fucking feel what it feels like."

“I already know what it feels like.” Michael spoke in a voice that he’d never heard himself use. It was snappy, irritable… and for the first time since the start of their interactions, Michael’s gray-green eyes weren’t displaying straight nervousness anymore, but there was a small flame.

“My entire life, I’ve been beaten up by kids just like you- bigger than you even. In elementary school it was because I stuttered, and in middle school it was because I didn’t look my age. But it was always because it’s just so damn easy to mess with me. I guess I was born like that.”

Michael’s teeth stopped gnashing, and his fists were unclenched, as his face became defeated again. His shoulders sank and the flame was drenched in leftover tears.

“A-And… if I was stupid enough to be in the same room while she was drunk, which she always was because she’s an alcoholic currently in rehab, my mom would…” Michael could feel himself start to tear up again. “… do that too.”

He shook his head, trying to make himself not cry anymore. “What happened to you… honestly?”

Michael looked at Orion again, his expression sinking. “You already told me that you were abused too. Is that why you’re so angry? Because if so, then I understand that. Before, I was clueless as to why you were so resentful from the start…”

He paused for a moment, letting everything gather and float to the bottom, and formed a small smile again. “Can we start over?”
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Re: They weren't lying when they said "Welcome to Hell"...

Post by Orion Pierce on Thu Aug 04, 2011 3:01 am

Orion's pissed off and resentful feeling quickly faded into a feeling that was usually foreign to him as Michael snapped back at him. Orion was use to people yelling back at him, but that was usually Mom or Dad, never someone his own age that he was about to basically shit all over. His hateful glare fell into just a regular look you gave someone when you were listening to them and for a second Orion felt like he actually cared about what Michael was saying, which was another rare occurrence with him.

“A-And… if I was stupid enough to be in the same room while she was drunk, which she always was because she’s an alcoholic currently in rehab, my mom would... do that too.”

Having never met someone else who had also been hit by their parents before, Orion felt weird and uncomfortable. He was still mad at Michael and he definitely wanted to punch him, but it wasn't because Michael had done anything, it was because he had actually made Orion feel... kind of sorry for what he had said. If there was anything Orion hated more than his dad, it was feeling sorry for someone, because when you start to feel sorry for someone, it's when you start to care, and when you start to care, it's when everything gets fucked up. He just hated caring about people and having to feel bad for them, anyways. It's a waste of time and in the end, all you have is yourself.

Looking away from Michael for a moment, Orion stared down at his shoes. Michael's stupid little face wasn't looking nervous anymore, but Orion didn't feel the self satisfaction that he thought he would after breaking him down like that. After hearing that Michael almost knew exactly how he felt made him feel like complete shit and Orion was never one to be all 'oh my life sucks, crying to myself at night, suicide, etc'. He wanted to cry, punch Michael, scream, and leave STC all at the same time, but the good half of those were definitely off limits. One, he couldn't cry because crying is for idiots and crying never gets you anywhere, Orion learned that the hard way. Two, leaving St. Christina's was also out of the realistic options for him, but where would he go even if he got out, anyways? Still, punching Michael and screaming were two very good, realistic and plausible options, but Orion felt like crap too much to even consider them twice.

Orion vaguely heard Michael ask him what happened to him. He didn't asked specifically at all, but Orion knew what he met before and even after he asked him if that was why he was 'angry'. He hated being described as that. The 'angry' kid. Everyone gets mad sometimes, so does that mean they're 'angry' too? Sure, Orion guessed that he does get angry way more than a usual person, but 'angry' makes you sound like some whiny idiot, and actually, maybe that's what he was.

"Can we start over?"

Now, this was just about possibly the dumbest question Orion has ever heard. I just said 'Fuck you" to you, I said I wanted to make you feel like shit, and all I did from the start was glare at you and insult you. Why the hell do want to start over? Was Michael mentally slow as well as being psychologically fucked up? If he was, Orion would definitely be able to believe that and take it as a cold hard fact.

Orion turned back to face Michael, but this time he wasn't glaring. It was just an impassive and empty stare. Orion didn't really know what to do. He didn't feel angry anymore, but more like flushed of all his feelings. Michael smiled a small smile at him, but Orion didn't return the smile, he was just frowning.

"So you know what it feels like, then?" He croaked after about four or five minutes of silence. After clearing his throat quietly, he continued in a monotone voice, "You know what it feels like to feel like complete and utter bullshit, too?"

Pausing, Orion thought over his next word choice a little bit, and then finally settled. "I almost broke my sister's arm once," He paused, yet again, "Purposely." Orion let that sink in a little before continuing, "But she slipped out of my grasp and hid until my parents came home. I threw a glass bottle at my faggoty father's head and made him go to the hospital. I killed a rabbit, and I could probably kill you right now, if I wanted. Just snap your dumb fucking little twig of a neck, if I wanted, I swear to god, Michael," Orion's voiced raised noticeably at the last sentence before he caught himself and lowered it. "But I'm not going to and I promise this. Don't think it's because I fucking care about you, but because I know what it will do to my mom. I have never made my mom proud, Michael, but maybe if I play fucking goody two shoes for a couple of months, I will."

Crossing his arms tight against his heaving chest, Orion looked at Michael, his eyes looked dark and sullen. "You made me feel sorry," Orion admittedly a little sheepishly, but quickly collected himself again. "And I think I'm still a little sorry about it, too."
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Re: They weren't lying when they said "Welcome to Hell"...

Post by Michael Courtenay on Thu Aug 04, 2011 6:45 pm

Michael, underneath his skin, was terrified of himself now, though he didn't show it on his face as he spoke to Orion. He couldn't remember the last time he openly showed his anger, and his efficient and unhealthy system of dealing with fury usually prevented him from expressing it. It was either stuffed in a dark closet in his head, or it was changed immediately to guilt or sadness. Any psychologist would agree that emotions don't just evaporate when they're ignored- they either remain in someone's head or they are formed into secondary emotions. Michael's fear of hurting people fueled this machine, this system of never showing his anger. And now, he showed it.

But instead of getting hit like he thought he was going to, (At this point, he was too angry to care.) Orion was actually listening to him. This was definitely not on his list of things to expect from the other boy. Orion wasn't glaring at him anymore- instead, he was just a look of... interest? Michael was bewildered, but that didn't distort the things that he said. Orion sure was a confusing guy- when Michael showed friendliness, concern and nervousness he looked like he was going to explode, and when Michael showed irritation, he subdued himself. Michael originally thought that if he showed anger to Orion, that would be the green light for the other boy to beat him senseless, and yet it had done the opposite. He wondered why that was, but instead, he revealed something about his mom that he hadn't even told Talon yet. He would have told Talon, but Michael never brought it up because, up until this point, he didn't want to admit to himself that it had happened.

After Michael told Orion about what his mom had done, he saw the look on Orion's face, and he guessed that what he said must have hit home. Then, Michael added a disclaimer:

"I love my mom, and she's a good person- she's not defined by her drinking problem. I'm really close to her because, besides Talon, she's all the family I have. And... whenever she went into a rage, she never remembered what she did the next day, so I would always have to pretend like nothing were wrong... to protect her. She still doesn't know." Michael felt himself tear up again. "The same thing with the bullies in my school- I explained to them that if they hit me in the face, I wouldn't be able to lie about it to teachers. So I specifically asked them to hit and kick in places that I could cover up with clothing. I-I just-"

Michael took a shaky breath before continuing: "- I just don't want anyone to get in trouble for the things that I do. If they want to beat me, I deserve whatever they give me. It's just hard to keep it a secret all the time, you know?"

He watched Orion look at his shoes, and he guessed that Orion went through a lot of the similar things that he did from the way he reacted. When Michael asked if they could start over, he asked because it was genuinely what he wanted. He wanted to be Orion's friend because, like everyone else he'd encountered in his life, he saw the good in him. He knew that Orion wasn't a sociopath- he cared deep down even though he didn't show it. Orion was hard to figure out, but he still felt things like everyone else.

Michael's light green eyes met Orion's green and blue, and instead of a glare filled with hate, Orion was showing just an empty stare. What Orion said next caught Michael completely off guard:

"So you know what it feels like, then? You know what it feels like to feel like complete and utter bullshit, too?"

Michael's wide eyes then melted into sincerity as he nodded. He then listened to all the things that Orion had done, and he could tell that somewhere, Orion felt guilty for all of them.

"I could probably kill you right now, if I wanted. Just snap your dumb fucking little twig of a neck, if I wanted, I swear to god, Michael-"

The smaller boy, though he was afraid, took a deep breath and kept on an unbreakable poker face that he'd never used before. If he showed Orion he was afraid, he would get mad at him again, and right now the situation was very delicate. Orion was starting to open up, and Michael was walking on egg shells right now. If he made him mad, it was all over. The bridge would be burned. He was relieved when Orion's voice became calmer again.

"But I'm not going to and I promise this. Don't think it's because I fucking care about you, but because I know what it will do to my mom. I have never made my mom proud, Michael, but maybe if I play fucking goody two shoes for a couple of months, I will."

Orion's mom had never been proud of him? Michael's eyes displayed his sympathy. That must've really been terrible for Orion- Michael's mom had her moments, but he knew she loved him and that she was proud of him. Talon loved him, and he was proud of him too. He was glad that Orion just basically promised not to hit him, and Michael was going to try his best not to unintentionally provoke him again. He was going to do his part to make sure that Orion was offered the same kind words from his mother too.

"That's going to take a lot of effort, I'm guessing. I don't know what being on the brink of rage feels like, but somehow after all this happened, I'm still in one piece. I still have all my limbs," Michael laughed. "And I'm sure if I met you in school or something, I wouldn't be alive. But,"

Michael smiled again. "I have a feeling that if you write to your mom and tell her that you're controlling yourself, she'd appreciate it. I don't know your mom, but if it's what you said that you've never made her proud, this has a very good chance. I mean, maybe this is my blind optimism speaking, but it's definitely worth a shot. I... know how it feels to have a parent not think you're worth anything. My mom loves me, I know she does, but I didn't know who my dad was until two years ago. And when I finally met him, he pretended like I didn't exist. He left when I was barely a month old... and,"

Michael's expression changed when he talked about his father. It was a cross between sadness and fury. "And I don't want to admit that I hate him. But I do. I know he doesn't care- if he did, he'd at least make an effort to have me in his life. Instead, he puts all of his love into his paranoid bitch of a wife and his twin daughters who don't want anything to do with him and think they're so mature."

Michael's face immediately changed to the color of a firetruck after he realized what he'd said. "D-Did I just say 'bitch'?!" He put his hand on his mouth in shock. "I-I-I'm sorry, I don't usually curse."

He turned his attention back to Orion again, his eyes widening once he heard:

"You made me feel sorry. And I think I'm still a little sorry about it, too."

Michael didn't really know how to react to Orion indirectly apologizing to him. Then, he smiled as he thought about what to say.

"That's okay," Michael said finally. "You know, it's kind of funny. I'm guessing that feeling of sorriness is kind of weird and unfamiliar to you, and anger is weird and unfamiliar to me, and we felt both when meeting each other."

He laughed and smiled brightly. "Our therapists we haven't met yet would be spinning their heads like in 'The Exorcist'."

Michael then shivered, his face changing slightly to nervousness again, then was reverted back to normal. "Yeah, anyway. I don't wanna talk about The Exorcist."
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Re: They weren't lying when they said "Welcome to Hell"...

Post by Orion Pierce on Thu Aug 04, 2011 9:46 pm

Orion didn't even know what to say to the boy in front of him. Michael didn't look scared of him anymore, he just looked angry and even a little bit exhausted. Seeing Michael like that made Orion realized that he felt pretty tired too. He'd never really talked about personal things about him and his parents before to anyone, not even his best friend, Timothy.

Listening to Michael talk about him mom, Orion grew weaker, he felt like he had just ran a nonstop five mile marathon. Who knew talking about this would take so much out of him? Orion knew his mom loved him, also, even if she never did, or will, for that matter, do anything about his dad. She's too afraid to, Orion knew she was, but it wasn't an option. Sometimes he felt like she didn't love him at all, but then he would remember that she was the only one who would say it now anyways. Orion might be an asshole who feels no guilt, but he's definitely not cocky, so he could see how people wouldn't like him at all. It was kind of obvious that no one would like him at all, anyways.

"- I just don't want anyone to get in trouble for the things that I do. If they want to beat me, I deserve whatever they give me. It's just hard to keep it a secret all the time, you know?"

"No, you don't," Orion muttered quickly. Being shocked by his own words, he looked up at Michael to see if he had caught what he said, too. He must have, you said it pretty loud. Orion thought. Not regretting that he said it, Orion picked and pulled up some courage and said a little louder, "You don't." Orion didn't say anything else after that, but he just looked at Michael, blankly. He wondered if Michael believed him and then settled with that he must, considering Michael came off so naive in the beginning.

He didn't know how long it had been since he had said something like that. It seemed like years and the only time he could remember was in fifth grade when he had defended this younger child on the playground. Orion couldn't remember why he had done it, and considered that maybe he hadn't even had a reason at the time either. After he had saved the kid from the older bully, Orion had just told him to go away and to not to bother him or to mention it to anyone.

Orion didn't laugh when Michael, but he just continued to listen to him intently. This kid was always so damn positive until you tipped him off and Orion had no idea why. How could anyone be so damn slap happy when they're in a psychiatric hospital? Isn't this a place for mourning, having to take medication, and being forced into therapy. This wasn't a place to make friends and then try to make some stupid ass popcorn necklaces or whatever the hell Michael made.

Then, Michael started to get angry again. The smaller boy was spewing hate and venom about his good for nothing dad. That was one thing they had in common, they both hated their father. Orion wondered whether Michael had told anyone about his hatred for his dad either. It was really weird to see such a young and small looking boy rage about something so serious. And then, he said bitch. This was probably the most horrible moment to do so, but Orion laughed. He burst right into a fucking fit of laughter even though he really knew he shouldn't have, but it just sounded so damn funny from Michael's high pitched voice and the emphasis he put on the swear word was even better.

After finally collecting himself together again, Orion looked at Michael to see what his expression was. Michael looked shocked because of himself and that even made the whole thing funnier. Orion always laughed at the most inappropriate of times, but he just couldn't help it.

Of course, Michael had to smile like a little kid in a candy store again and mention The Exorcist. Orion watched as Michael's cheerful smile turned into a look of horror and he said something about not wanting to talk about that movie. Orion smirked subtly and said, purposely ignoring the topic of The Exorcist, solely for Michael's sake, "I guess you're right. That's pretty weird." Orion didn't know whether to continue back to his cold shoulder personality with Michael or to actually act like how he did with his friends back home. He didn't want to make friends with anyone here, but there was a part of him that knew he had to in the end and it would make thing subtly better for the time being.
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Re: They weren't lying when they said "Welcome to Hell"...

Post by Michael Courtenay on Fri Aug 05, 2011 12:55 am

In truth, Michael was exhausted. First, Orion stirred up the most anxiety he'd felt since coming to St. Christina's- perhaps even more than the freak out he exhibited when he first arrived, and that was saying something. Then, he showed the most anger he ever showed anyone. Granted, Michael didn't express as much anger as the Average Joe, but on his own scale, this was the biggest emotional roller coaster he'd been on in a while. Going from extreme fear to extreme anger was taxing... and he almost wanted to go to sleep.

But he was woken up right after he mentioned that he felt he deserved to get beaten if that was what the other person wanted. His face expressed his shock after Orion had spoken:

"No, you don't,"

Michael's eyes widened slightly, out of surprise this time, as he was completely speechless. Had Orion just... defended him? Just when Michael thought that he was hearing things, Orion looked him in the eye and firmly reinforced what he said. Michael's shocked face then melted into one of sincerity. It was as if those words had hit Michael's heart, and were filling his veins with warmth. Happiness was traveling along his blood stream now, and for the first time since he got over his fear of speaking from having a stutter for so long, he really didn't know what to say. What Orion said gave him a feeling that was comparable to how Talon made him feel all the time- he felt cared about, wanted. Michael couldn't find words for how much Orion's words had meant to him... but he knew he had to sooner or later before the silence got awkward.

"Y-You don't... know how much that means to me." He spoke softly, still dumbfounded. "And I believe you."

It wasn't just one of those 'Dependent Personality Disorder says that everyone else is always right' kind of deals- Michael knew in his heart that what Orion said was true. This was one of those moments where Michael wanted to reinvent himself, to gain more self-confidence so that he could truly act on believing in what Orion had said, instead of just wanting to.

"Can I tell you something? You... you make me want to be brave and stand up for myself, and I suck at that right now. But," Michael smiled brightly at Orion again. "I know you're a true friend, because if you weren't, you wouldn't have said that."

As Michael talked about his father, he grew angrier and angrier... just as how he did when he talked about him with Talon. It was something Michael couldn't comprehend- why would you abandon your, at the time, only child? He could understand splitting up from a spouse if the relationship wasn't working out, but James Miller could have at least stuck around town so that Michael could actively be a part of his life... instead of just finding a random state to settle in and make new babies with a new wife. Part of him was happy for the Miller family, and the other half was filled with jealousy. In his mind, he spoke to Tori and Brielle, his step-sisters: 'You have a dad and I don't.' He knew envy was a sin, and that's why he tried his best to break off from wallowing in those negative emotions.

When Orion laughed, it caught Michael off guard, but then he found himself laughing whole-heartedly with him. It started off as a small chuckle, but then it was all-out, side-splitting laughter. He had a habit of laughing when other people laughed, but he found it funny too.

"Hahaha, yeah I know- that should be a news heading. 'Stereotypical, innocent little Catholic kid utters profanity'." He laughed as he decided to tell a fitting story. "When my mom gave me up to a foster home a few months ago, my roommate's name was Jorge. He was this eccentric, hyperactive Mexican kid who, when we first met, made it his life's mission to get me to curse. He literally tried everything, from trying to trick me into saying 'shit' by saying 'Say hit, say bit, say legit, what's a synonym for poop?' to threatening to not give the picture of my dad that I hide under my pillow back until I said 'fuck'."

Michael knew he was cursing the entire time, but he didn't think this counted- it was for the sake of the story after all. "And all of his attempts failed... until this one time, I was in the shower. All the rooms in the youth home had their own personal bathrooms. Anyway, Jorge ended up putting a zombie mask on and screaming into the shower because he knew I'm afraid of zombies, and I screamed and fell back and hit my head on the faucet. He asked if I was okay, but then I screamed, 'You fucking asshole!' as loud as I could because it hurt! I almost had to get stitches. But he was so proud of himself." Michael, due to being very good at voice imitations, projected Jorge's voice perfectly. It was slightly lower than his, and still had a lingering Spanish accent. "Yes! I did it! I made Michael Courtenay curse! I have gone where no man has gone before!"

Michael then sighed. "I kind of miss Jorge. He was my best friend after Alan told me that he never wanted to see my face again. Alan was the catcher on the baseball team I was on back in Michigan... and he was kind of the first person who made it his mission to get me to realize my worth as a pitcher..."

Michael shook his head after his face started to show his sadness. "Do you have any friends back where you're from?"

He hoped his question didn't stir up any unwanted feelings in Orion, but he wanted to know more about his roommate. He knew Orion wasn't just an explosive, pessimistic cardboard cut-out. He was a person with memories just like everyone else... but would he trust Michael as Michael trusted him?
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Re: They weren't lying when they said "Welcome to Hell"...

Post by Orion Pierce on Fri Aug 05, 2011 3:19 am

"Y-You don't... know how much that means to me. And I believe you."

The corners of Orion's mouth went up in a small smile and he actually felt a lot better than a couple of moments before. He'd never really considered the though of anything he had said to anyone to mean something at all and to hear Michael say that what he had said to him meant something, not only that but that he also believed Orion when he had said it, lifted his spirits high enough so Orion could raise his shoulders a little and actually smile. Not a snide, smug little smirk, but just a real smile, one he didn't have plastered on his face too often, usually only when he was with his friends or alone with his mom. Even then it wasn't an often occurrence for him to be sporting this expression.

Feeling that at least someone believed Orion made his inexistent optimist side come out of him. If you can make at least someone believe you, then you can make at least another person happy in the end. Something about having a friend made this whole experience seem a lot less worse than it had first started off to be. Of course Orion knew that it would be a lot more outbursts with other people and rages at his new therapist before he would be completely better, but once Orion had befriended someone, it was really hard for him to actually get mad at them. Sure, he might get annoyed with Michael maybe a little bit in the future, but he wasn't betting that he would have another fit of anger against him for awhile, especially after knowing that Michael also lacked the father figure that Orion also needed in his life. Knowing that you could relate to someone in a way made your friendship with them more important, in Orion's perspective.

Orion's smile grew wider when Michael told him about how he made him want to stand up for himself and he said, "Good, because you really should stand up for yourself. You shouldn't let people walk all over you," He paused and thought, 'But you just walked all over him, idiot.' Orion's face fell a little bit, but his voice stayed strong as he assured, "Even if it's not always easy."

Laughing at Michael's joke, Orion listened to him talk about Jorge and he started to laugh even harder when Michael would say a swear word. Michael was actually really funny and interesting to talk to and it made Orion start to feel a little bad again about being such a dick to him, but he brushed on the oncoming feeling of guilty, he didn't want this good, careless feeling to go away. It had been awhile since he had tried to relax and just talk to someone like a friend considering he hadn't seen Timothy in two whole months before he left for STC because of his father's orders and therapy, so it was safe to say he was the most relaxed he had been in awhile.

Michael's imitation of the Mexican accent was perfect and it had Orion roaring with laughter. "You're really good at that!" He complimented while clutching onto his gut. He assumed he looked like a maniac for laughing so hard at all of his jokes, but Orion could really care less considering he had had an outburst, almost broke down crying, and also ended up defending Michael in one setting.

Orion made a face when Michael told him about the kid who had said he had never wanted to see his face. "Why'd he say that? He sounds like a dick. Did you tell him off?" Well, obviously not. Orion felt a little dumb after asking that, but he knew Michael wouldn't care about his stupid question.

"Do you have any friends back from where you're from?"

"Assuming I had none, I see?" Orion teased. "Kidding, but, yeah, I had a couple. My best friend's name was Timothy, but we usually just called him Brindle when we're with him, that's his last name and he hates his first name." Orion laughed before saying, "This one time, we went into Walmart, right? Well we had been really hyper because he had brought along a lot of candy with him, but anyways, we were in the woman's section and he kept trying to get me to ask one of the workers if I could try on this weird corset, body shaper thing. I really didn't want to, but he kept telling me to, so I yelled at him, 'Shut up, I'm not doing it' and he shoved me and I fell into this rack of clothes, which ended up knocking over this huge stack of shoeboxes. Then workers and security chased out of the whole store. I felt kind of bad because the workers probably had to clean it all up, but the funny thing was was that Timothy only had one shoe when we finally stopped running. We were even passed the gas station then, so there was no turning back."

Orion looked back at Michael after realizing he had been staring at a corner of the room almost the whole time he had been telling his story. He smiled and laughed a little. Maybe his time at Saint Christina's would be better as long as he had a friend to have to go through it with him. You don't need any friends here. A little voice in the back of his head told him, but he ignored it.
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Re: They weren't lying when they said "Welcome to Hell"...

Post by Michael Courtenay on Fri Aug 05, 2011 4:57 am

Michael was nothing less than ecstatic when he saw Orion smile. When Orion first walked in the room, Michael was starting to doubt that the corners of his mouth could form anything outside of a scowl or a smirk. He was so happy that Orion was genuinely happy too! Michael guessed that this sort of thing didn't happen very much for the other boy, and he savored it.

Michael knew that Orion and him had obvious differences, but they had a lot of things in common too- they were both abused by some person or another, and were often misunderstood because of their issues. In both of Orion and Michael's cases, their psychological disorders were very hard to cover up- Orion had outbursts and Michael had anxiety attacks and cleaning compulsions. They weren't very subtle, and most people didn't understand them. But Michael and Orion were starting to understand each other, and that was all that mattered.

Michael listened to Orion speak after his smile grew wider, and he felt encouraged. He felt like what Orion had said was entirely possible. Sure, it would take work- but wasn't that what St. Christina's was there for? Michael definitely needed to work on being more assertive and sure of himself... but he felt that if he truly kept at it, he could gain the confidence he never had.

"I'll be the toughest ten-year-old you've ever seen," Michael declared, punching the air as he laughed whole-heartedly. "When I need to be."

Michael didn't know how he was going to do it, but he was ready. He felt like he was done with being some fearful little doormat. He could shed his previous self like an exoskeleton. Unlike the time of Dr. Ivanova's feeble attempt at assertiveness training, Michael had a reason to try now. He was going to give it his all- he promised that to his new friend.

He was amused right along with Orion once the other boy found him funny. This was fun for Michael- not too many people thought he was funny. Sure, he knew he was quirky, but that wasn't the same thing. He smiled even wider when Orion liked his voice impersonations.

"I can do so many other voices too! I can do a Miley Cyrus voice: 'It's a party in the USA!-" Michael sang out Miley's honeyed voice and southern drawl. "I can... do a Squidward voice: "SPONGEBOB! Stop doing XYZ! I'm trying to hone my musical talent!-" He did that without even having to hold his nose. "And I can do my mom's voice too! "Michael James Courtenay! Why did you vacuum twice? You know you're only supposed to do that once a week! What else have you cleaned?!"

Michael giggled. "I can imitate any voice I've heard before as long as it's not too low-pitched."

Then, he heard what Orion said about Alan, and sighed. "Well, he had a good reason for flipping out- I quit the team in the middle of the season because it was days after my mom gave me up... so I didn't think I could effectively try anymore because I was too emotional and sort of a zombie. But the worst part about Alan making quick judgements about me being selfish is that he didn't even give me a chance to explain myself. Oh well- he's probably paired with another pitcher by now who won't do that. And I actually didn't tell him off- I've never done that to anyone. Surprise, surprise."

In truth, that was one of the main things that Michael felt guilty for- quitting the team. The wound was still fairly new, but he pushed those thoughts away for now. Orion and him were having fun discussing other things. He almost visibly became fearful again before Orion said that he was kidding about the having friends thing.

'Oh. Okay. Breathe. He's joking. I really need to get better at telling whether or not someone is joking...'

Michael listened to the Walmart story and laughed as hard as Orion had done moments ago. He was laughing so hard he was clutching his sides and his cheeks hurt. And then said:

"Dude! You have crazy Walmart stories too? I actually have a couple myself. This one time, me and some guys from the baseball team, Alan, Soup (his name is Tyler Campbell), Carter and Kenny decided to wreak havoc in Walmart. Kenny's brother Brian works there and he hates his life, so we kind of wanted to cheer him up while he was stocking shelves. The guys basically forced me into pretending that I was a lost little eight-year-old kid, because this thing-" Michael pointed to the center of his eyes, at his pituitary gland. "- was like, 'Oh, you want some growth hormones? Well fuck you!', so I looked the part to begin with. I went to the office and tearfully explained to the manager of the entire store that I lost my mom and I didn't know where she was. The manager led me out into the hallway so that everyone else could pile into the office, and Kenny used the loudspeaker to say, "Brian Li, you are are a sad emo kid who needs to get a new job. That is all.' And we bolted!"

Michael found himself laughing uncontrollably again. "We ran far away... maybe as far away as you and Brindle."

Michael smiled again. He hoped that Orion and him would do something of this nature when they got out of this place.
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Re: They weren't lying when they said "Welcome to Hell"...

Post by Orion Pierce on Fri Aug 05, 2011 4:44 pm

Laughing, Orion watched as Michael swung his fists at the empty air in front of him. Talking to Michael in a casual, friendly way hadn't even crossed his mind when the boy had introduced himself when Orion had first entered the room, little alone laughing and defending the kid. It just showed how quick to judge Orion was, but it's not like people weren't quick to judge him also. He was almost positive Michael had immediately stuck a big, fat sign on Orion's forehead that read 'Stay away', which was understandable of course and actually not that bad, considering during that moment when he had first talked to Michael, that had been all he wanted.

"Hell yes!" Orion stood from his seat on Bed Four and bounced around the area like a boxer would do when in the ring. He had his fists pulled up to his face for defense and frequently dodged left or right before throwing his own punch to the air. "Michael, age ten, the world most famous boxer of all time," Orion called in a deep, gruff voice, trying to sound like one of the commentators during a boxing match. He stopped jumping around and let his fists fall to his sides as he looked at Michael again. "Yeah, it's safe to say you're way better than that," Orion admitted with a laugh before dropping down onto his bed again.

Orion listened to Michael do more imitations with interest and grin. After the smaller boy did the imitation of his mother's voice, Orion's smile faltered a little. Did she really yell at him for vacuuming twice? Sure, Orion also had his fair share of moments of being screamed at, but not for doing something that was actually helpful. (Which he rarely did, anyways.) When Orion did something good, it usually just went unnoticed, except for from his mom, but an uncared for good deed was a lot more easy to cope with rather than being scolded for doing something well.

Eyes narrowing as Michael talked more about Alan, Orion's dislike for the guy had grown a large amount already, and he'd never even met the kid! "He's stupid. I hate people like that. They automatically assume you're a bad kid or something just because of some dumb shit," Orion slightly growled with disgust and rolled his eyes. When Orion first met Michael, he didn't assume he was a bad person, he just thought he was instigating and annoying as hell. There wasn't anything Orion hated more than some stupid soccer mom giving him dirty looks as they picked up their kids from school if he got to close to their car or whatever the hell their problem was just because they had heard 'what happened'. That's what the stupid gossip middle aged hags always said. 'Did you hear what happened to the Olivia's kid?' He could hear it crystal clear in his head and he noticeably sneered at the thought of it.

After Orion had told Michael his story, he listened to him narrate about a time he and his own friends had wreaked havoc through out the store. And of course, Orion roared into laughter when Michael said 'fuck you'. He felt like an idiot laughing so hard every time he cussed, but there was nothing funnier to him than someone who looked like a child cussing like it was an everyday thing. Then, Orion smiled when Michael called Timothy by his nickname, like everyone did, but Orion was the only one to call Tim by his first name, except for his parents. Timothy hated his name, and that was partly why Orion addressed him by it, but plus, he saw it as a bit of a best friend thing. Orion would call 'Brindle' Timothy and Timothy would call Orion 'Rion'.

"This place is pretty dreary, isn't it?" Orion asked and scoped out the room, for about the fifth time. The weather was actually very nice and cool, but it was really cloudy outside, making everything come off with a bit of a gray tint, which he had noticed while walking around the grounds, trying to find his dorm. "What do you usually do all day, being stuffed up in here?" Orion asked this because he really was curious. What the hell were they supposed to do all day when they weren't taking medication or going to therapy? Play checkers? I think not.

He wondered if Michael would just let him hang around with him until he got his bearings. Orion felt like that sounded pretty clingy and stupid of him, but he didn't want to go around moping the whole time all by himself like those stupid kids in those dumb movies about teenage angst. Knowing that he'd done his fair share of moping around anyways, Orion felt silly for thinking that Michael would let him hang out with him sometimes, considering Orion would probably dislike everyone he met here in the beginning, and plus, Michael must have a lot of friends here anyways.
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Re: They weren't lying when they said "Welcome to Hell"...

Post by Michael Courtenay on Fri Aug 05, 2011 11:05 pm


When Orion first walked into the room, Michael admitted to himself that he judged him initially. Orion pretty much pushed him on the brink of panic, but then, once Michael realized that he must have had a reason to feel the way he did, Michael made it his mission to perhaps offer a friendship. And it worked. He almost scolded himself for being so afraid of Orion from the start, but he was having too much fun at the moment to dwell on that. He was glad that he saw Orion for who he really was and not who everyone else must have seen him. Somehow, Michael and Orion understood each other, and just in the knick of time too.

Michael couldn’t stop himself from laughing as Orion acted just like a fighter in a boxing ring. “Pfft- I wouldn’t go that far. I’ve never thrown an actual punch before in my life. I’ve gotten beat up, sure, but I’ve never gotten into a fight.” The difference there was, of course, that Michael would need to hit back for it to be a fight.

“Better? What do you mean by that?” Michael asked, still smiling from before, but now his face showed intrigue. What was Orion talking about?

Michael looked back at Orion as he was done impersonating his mom’s voice, then sighed. “I guess I should’ve explained that- usually, moms yell at kids for not cleaning. I have OCD- it got to the point where my mom disciplined me for cleaning, but she also praised me for not giving in to a compulsion. I’ve had OCD my entire life, but it wasn’t actually diagnosed until I was twelve. My compulsions mostly revolve around cleaning and fixing. So I cleaned so much at home that my mom had to limit what I cleaned. If I see something out of place, I have to fix it. If I see, say, a cup turned on its side in a kitchen cabinet, all of the dishes in the cabinets will end up reorganized neatly in different place. And I need to be the one who cleans- I’m kind of defensive about that. The only times when my mom cleaned was when I was sick or out of the house. Otherwise, cleaning was my job. It’s not just the fact that I can’t control myself from cleaning, but I kind of like it too because I can take my mind off the things that are bothering me when I do. It’s like an escape.”

Michael paused, and then looked at Orion. “Is that normal? Because I’ve been told it isn’t.”

Michael was surprised when Orion expressed his apparent dislike for Alan Thatcher. “I… still think he’s a good person. Although, I’m not the best at identifying other people’s bad qualities. Our battery, that’s what a pitcher/catcher combo is called in baseball, was kind of… strange. Almost everyone on the team, in general, tried to steer clear of me because they didn’t know when I’d have a random anxiety attack, but they secretly didn’t like Alan more, and that’s saying something- they said he was bossy and blatantly controlling me. I couldn’t really picture that, because Alan was just watching out for me- he made sure that I wasn’t over-practicing and eating right and stuff. He was the one who made me believe that I was a good pitcher, because he said that I have really good control and have so many other different pitches at my disposal than most pitchers my age. But he did have this… thing. Alan was usually really, really calm and analytical and mature- 90% of the time. But sometimes, I’d do something like fidget or openly doubt myself or something… and he’d explode. Like, literally, throw things and scream. It’s like intermittent-explosive-status. It wasn’t obvious that he was angry leading up to it- he’d be really calm one second and look like he was about to strangle me the next.” Michael sighed.

Michael laughed along with Orion when he personified his dormant pituitary gland. “I don’t think I’ve ever cursed so much in one day… that’s really interesting.”

"This place is pretty dreary, isn't it?"

“It can be,” Michael shrugged, then listened again. “Oh! Well, I’m usually not in here. Because Nate and Connor aren’t here most of the time, I’m always wandering around the grounds. I know where everything is now without getting lost, and I always get lost. But I could show you around- there’s a few basketball courts, and a garden… and have you been to the co-ed building yet? There’s plenty to do in there.”

Michael smiled. “Maybe I could introduce you to my brother! Well, he’s not… biologically my brother, but we met hours after I first came here, and it was weird- both of us basically filled each other’s emotional voids. It’s like both of us were what the other was missing their entire lives. His name is Talon.”

He put his finger to his chin. “Then again, he’s probably out today- he’s on Ward C, so that means that he can go off the grounds if he wants. Have you looked at the handbook yet? Do you know about the different wards?”
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Re: They weren't lying when they said "Welcome to Hell"...

Post by Orion Pierce on Sat Aug 06, 2011 1:30 am

"I’ve gotten beat up, sure, but I’ve never gotten into a fight.”

Orion shrugged and said, like it was nothing, "I've been in loads of fights. With a lot of people, usually about dumb crap. Once, I even got into a fight with my dad." He stopped talking suddenly and looked down at his fingers which were drumming silently onto his thighs. Not now, Orion definitely did not want to talk about his dad right now, but it had just come to mind about the whole fighting thing. Of course, it hadn't been necessarily a real fight, considering it was just a couple of swings before Orion was just over powered. It's safe to say that Orion stopped trying to fight back after that because it usually made what happened next a lot worse than it might've been before he tried to go and defend himself. And like always, his mom did nothing except tell Kaylee to go to her room and after finally convincing Orion's sister to leave, then she fled to her room, also, to leave Orion all alone with Him.

“Better? What do you mean by that?”

His neck snapped up to face Michael that he had almost gotten whiplash and only then did he noticed that his jaw was tense and his fists were clenched so that his nails were digging into the tiny wounds from earlier that day. Closing his eyes, Orion counted to ten. Not again, not right now when I'm finally relaxed and actually having fun. This was really starting to piss himself. This being himself. Why do you always have to fucking freak out? Orion scolded himself in his head. That's in the past, get over it. But two months wasn't long enough for it to be that easy to forget.

After about inhaling and exhaling ten times, Orion looked up to face the smaller boy and he just shook his head. "You probably wouldn't wail on him. I could see you intimidating people verbally, if they picked on you, though," He paused for a moment, "But if they're tall and overweight then I suggest you run for it because your legs would snap with one sit from their chubby asses." Orion motioned with his head to Michael's legs that were quite skinny because of his whole 'Hi I'm Michael and I look ten years old' thing. Orion knew he was actually quite skinny also, but he was still taller than Michael by a couple of inches, which was good enough for him.

Almost done brushing off the memory of his dad, Orion listened to Michael tell him about his OCD and it seemed like hell to live with. It was funny because Orion and Michael were almost exact opposites, except for the fact that they had both been abused by someone in some way and were suffering from very noticeable psychiatric issues. (Oh, what a joy.) "Dude, you'd have a heart attack if you ever went into my room. Shit is lying everywhere. Some days, I can walk into it, pick something up off the floor, and be like 'Oh, I didn't know I had this' or it can look so mangled to the point where I don't even know what the hell it is. It's crazy." He thought it sounded pretty weird how Michael explained that cleaning helped him take his mind off of things. "You sound like someone who smokes weed to relieve stress, but instead, you clean," Orion said kind of dumbly, but laughed. Cleaning didn't do anything except make him feel stressed out and like there was no way in hell he would be able to clean up this whole damn place that looked like a tsunami had just rushed by, ripping everything to shreds.

“Is that normal? Because I’ve been told it isn’t.”

Orion shrugged and slung his feet over onto the bed, and sat cross legged. "Who cares about being normal anyways. As long as it's healthy," Which Orion was positive that OCD was not, but he meant in general this time, "then who cares."

Listening to Michael explain Alan made Orion realized like him and this Alan kid sounded pretty alike in the whole 'blowing up in someone's face' way. Orion wondered that maybe Alan had an anger problem too, either that or he was just a jack ass, but maybe he had a reason. "He sounds like me when I first met you," Orion blurted out. He felt a little awkward and scratched his neck, waiting to see what Michael's reply to that would be.

"That would be awesome!" Orion grinned at Michael when he offered to show him around the facility. This kid was so damn nice, it was kind of creepy. It reminded him of those horror movies were there's a little kid that comes off all nice and innocent and then ends up killing all the adults because they're too stupid to realize that the child is the one behind all of the 'mysterious murders'. Orion took one look at Michael and realized that the boy would probably murder his own self if he accidentally stepped on a dog's tail.

"The only places I've been so far is little arounds grounds, aka the walkway to here, and the boys dorms building, aka the building we are in now," Orion said with a smile.

After Orion listened to Michael tell him about someone named Talon, who he called his big brother, it made him think of his own little sister. Kaylee. Orion rolled his eyes at the thought of his 'perfect little sister' with her 'perfect little grades' and her 'perfect little I am class president, I love everyone, etc etc' act. If only people saw how she acted towards his big bad brother, that would be quite the head spinner for most of the teachers and dumb Girl Scott mom's of Shoreham to see Perfect Little Kaylee was actually a spoiled little brat.

The mention of the STC Handbook made Orion audibly groan. The funny thing was, was that Orion actually had read it because his mother forced him to. "Yeah, I read it. Talk about boring as hell. Ward A is supposed to be the worst one." He rolled his eyes and then smirked at Michael. "Guess we're some hardcore mother fuckers, eh?" That was most likely an inappropriate thing to joke about, considering the situation wasn't funny in the slightest.
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Re: They weren't lying when they said "Welcome to Hell"...

Post by Michael Courtenay on Sat Aug 06, 2011 9:27 pm

What Orion said next hadn’t really surprised Michael. He could tell Orion had gotten into, perhaps more than, his fair share of physical fights. And he had to agree- usually when people fought, it was over something stupid with an underlying issue bubbling below the surface. Michael had witnessed a few fights when he was hospitalized the first time at age twelve, and some of the things these kids blew up about were kind of silly in his opinion. He couldn’t relate to being angry over just anything, but he was very good at identifying the real reason as to why other people would choose to fight each other. Whenever Orion would get into a fight with someone else, he guessed that the cause would be ‘dumb’, but the reason must have felt real and overwhelming for him to snap.

And then Orion mentioned his father… and he had his angry face on. His jaw was tightened and his fists were clenched, and Michael knew right then that he had to just let Orion ride it out. The smaller boy truthfully wanted to know just what type of asshole his father was- he didn’t sound like the subtle type, like Michael’s father. He was the type to go all out and consciously beat his children, and that would make anyone livid. That was a clear-cut reason to hate your father, not just a ‘I hate you but I don’t want to hate you, maybe I don’t have a reason to feel this way, of course you do he abandoned you!’ kind of bipolar deal that Michael had exhibited with his father. With Orion’s dad, it was black and white- not being consumed with hatred, or at the very least angry, wasn’t an option. That wasn’t something that you just brushed off and left on a shelf to deal with later. In Michael’s case, his mother’s situation was very… confusing. She had hurt him, but she hadn’t meant to and didn’t even remember doing it. Michael loved his mother and believed that she was a good person, so he basically stuffed his negative emotions in a box and beat them with a hammer repeatedly until they were silenced, thus not telling his mother or giving her any hints that it happened. It was the one thing he actively lied about without faltering. In some ways, Orion was lucky- his father’s situation made for straight-up, solid anger- no questions. In Michael’s cases of both of his parents… there were too many gray areas.

Michael decided against asking Orion about his father- this was hardly the time, and he might freak out. So he silently watched as Orion breathed deeply like he had to whenever he was having an anxiety attack.

“Your father doesn’t really seem like a ‘father’ either. At least, not what a father should be.” Michael said simply. “I don’t even call my dad ‘Dad’. I call him my sperm donor, because that’s essentially what he was- he got my mom pregnant and took off!”

Michael laughed despite the sadness it entailed, and then considered what Orion had said next. “U-Um… I don’t know about that. If I needed to, maybe, but not likely. I guess defending myself is something I need to… learn, not re-learn. But I don’t have a problem defending other people.”

He laughed at the mentioning of if a fat person sat on him. “I’ve never actually experienced that. But I’ll be on the look-out. If I manage to somehow anger a sumo wrestler, I’ll be sure to run the opposite way!”

Michael laughed even harder at the description of Orion’s room. “I probably would- whenever something is out of place, I need to fix it, so I think it’s good that I wasn’t friends with you before this or I’d probably spiral into convulsions or something at the sight of your room.” He said this in a joking voice, but really, he wasn’t joking at all. “In my room back home, all that’s on the floor is the furniture that needs to be there. Bed is always made, clothes in the drawer are folded and color-coded, bookshelf is either alphabetized by author’s last name or grouped by subject depending on the day… and… um, oh! Everything on and inside of my desk is in neat little piles too. What’s like, the weirdest thing you’ve ever found in the dark crevices of your room? Anything horrific or interesting?”

Michael didn’t really know what to make of the weed-smoking comment. “Do you smoke weed?”

He didn’t really know much about weed other than the fact that some kids he knew smoked it, and they liked it. But his mom told him that if he did drugs, then he wouldn’t amount to anything, so weed and Michael Courtenay hadn’t directly crossed paths as of yet. He was less concerned about weed than he was about, say, cocaine, but he still wasn’t convinced that weed was completely harmless like his friends said it was. If it was, then it wouldn’t be illegal and so many people wouldn’t be so against it.

Michael smiled in response to what Orion said about being normal. “I guess you’re right. What is ‘normal’ anyway?”

When Orion compared himself to Alan, Michael shook his head. “Not at all. No offense, but it’s really obvious when you’re angry. With Alan, he explodes a second after being calm… and it doesn’t seem like he can control it either. And a few minutes ago, I’m willing to bet money that you truly wanted to rip my head off without any second thoughts. But until I quit the team, Alan never really meant to be mad at me. It’s like impulse control- like me and organizing things. But the problem is always me, anyway- I have a way with making people angry because I’m anxious all the time. I don’t mean to.”

Michael was surprised by Orion’s enthusiasm to take a tour of the facility, and then laughed excitedly. “O-kay! Which do you want to see first, the grounds or the co-ed building? Outside the building, there’s a garden, a basketball court and a courtyard… and more grounds. And inside, there’s a rec. room if you’re into that, and the dining hall is in the same building for future reference. My vote’s on the courts- I haven’t actually exercised in… well, since I quit the team. I need to do something with all this pent up energy.”

When he mentioned Talon, he saw Orion roll his eyes and was then confused. “What’s wrong?” Perhaps mentioning Talon annoyed him? It didn’t look like that’s what was going on- he looked like he was remembering something irritating.

Michael couldn’t help but laugh uncontrollably at Orion’s next comment. “Definitely. We could be O.M.P.’s- original mental patients! You know, instead of O.G.’s- original gangsters. Although, could you imagine me as a gang member? I think the day I become a gangster, you’d be a therapist!”
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Re: They weren't lying when they said "Welcome to Hell"...

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