About: Brothers & Sisters general
Rate: Can’t go higher than PG-13 as this American Television.
Disclaimer: Just escaping from reality here, not created for financial gain.
Summary: It’s my own season 7. Go with it! If you believe you can do better, write it yourself! I dare you!
***** 4/4 *****
“I’m done. Going back to the beach.” Justin says. “Are you coming?”
“You go ahead. I’ll join you soon. I just want some time alone. Just me and the ocean…”
“Are you sure? I don’t like leaving you alone. What if you get some cramp or…?”
“Justin, I feel fine.”
“Well, I guess, I’m forever the paramedic.” Justin smiles.
“And you’re good at your job too!” Tommy says. “No worries. You and I have both been here alone. Nothing can happen. The coast is not that far away and the wind will drift me towards the shore. I’ll be fine. You go to the others and I won’t be far behind.”
“Go!” Tommy orders with a smile on his face. He sees Justin move away and he smiles, glad that Justin is such a caring and loving person. It’s getting chillier and Tommy carefully splashes about to get closer to the coast.
With a smile on his face, he closes his eyes. He can almost see Elizabeth before him, playing in the sand, her curls dancing around her head. How could he have lost so much valuable time with her?
“I swear, baby, I’ll take you and your brother to the beach more often….” He mumbles.
He opens his eyes and sees that he has been moving in the wrond direction and that he has slowly drifted off away from the coast. He moves his hands and legs in the water, edging closer to the coast. He puts in more effort, but he still feels too lazy to really do something. The water splashes around him and he enjoys the peace and quiet on the water until he suddenly feel an excruciating pain in his lower leg.
He yells in pain and when he sits up he sees blood seeping through his wet-suit. He doesn’t understand. Had he cut himself? With what? At that moment he sees a triangular shaped fin move away and he cannot believe it. A shark? In these waters? Now? The shark doesn’t seem to be big and it doesn’t appear to be coming back either.
Tommy hoists his leg out of the water, unaware that the blood keeps flowing. The beach is not that far away, maybe he can get closer and catch someone’s attention by yelling or waving. The lifeguard for instance. He uses as much of strength as he can muster and the coast comes closer, but the blood keeps spilling as well…
“It’s getting late, we should be leaving. Where is Tommy?” Nora puts her hand over her eyes and checks the water, but she cannot see him.
“Shouldn’t have left him.” Justin mumbles.
“Oh, don’t be silly. Tommy is a big boy. He can take care of himself.” Nora frowns.
“He’s just trying to get away from carrying everything back to car and the heavy lifting…”
“I think Kevin is right. Let’s get packing. I don’t want to be driving in the dark too much.” Sarah suggests. Under Paige’s watchful eye all the litter is gathered to be thrown away, while bags are being reorganized and clothes are being changed.
“Kev?” Justin takes Kevin by the elbow and pushes him away from the others. “Kev, I have a funny feeling about this. Tommy was not far behind me, when we said goodbye. He said he just wanted to relax a little more.... That was nearly an hour ago. The sun is going down. Tommy should have been back by now.”
Kevin nods, his face equally concerned.
“I’ve been thinking the same thing. It’s not like him to stay away like that… Listen, I need to help Scotty load the car, I can’t let him do that alone, but once that is done, why don’t we ask the lifeguard to have a look for him? He’s in a better position than we are.”
Justin nods to show that he agrees with Kevin’s suggestion. They both help everyone by carrying the heavier things, like the coolers, in the car. They make sure that the surfboards are safely strapped to the roof of Kevin’s car. Finally only small items remain and Kevin feels it’s time he and Justin go to the lifeguard.
“You guys, go on and pack. Maybe Tommy just drifted too far away or something. We’ll have to check…” He explains. The family watches them leave and Nora sighs.
“I don’t like this. This was such a fun day. I don’t understand why Tommy isn’t back yet…”
“Like Kevin said, it’s probably nothing.” Kitty says. “Let’s get the kids in the car, they are exhausted and all played out.” She rubs Evan’s back, who’s half asleep in Seth’s arms.
“Daniel keep hardly keep his eyes open.” Scotty picks up his son, who cannot even protest this anymore.
The kids trudge after the adults. All are quiet, semi-sunburned and still feeling the warmth of this wonderful day. By the time their group arrives at the car Justin and Kevin join them there.
“Listen, we have to report this at the lifeguard-station.” Kevin says.
“Oh.” Nora’s frown becomes deeper.
“We’ll be taking my car…” Justin says. “Is there any way we can shift around a bit?”
“Well, if Kevin is going with you then Tyler can go with me.” Scotty says. “That leaves us with Helen and Mateo… and who’s driving Tommy’s car?”
“I can drive…” Sarah says.
“Here’s the key.” Nora hands it over to her.
“We’ll take Mateo and Helen with us. So we won’t have too many people in one car…”
“Thanks, Chad.” Kevin nods. "Just drop them off at our house, Helen is staying at our house tonight."
Sarah gets in Tommy’s car, Jordan joins her. Elizabeth and Billy are already half-asleep in the back. Nora chases Ryan, Paige and Cooper into her car and soon she’s ready as well. By then Evan and Grace are strapped in their car-seats and Seth sits down behind the wheel, while Kitty sits down in the passenger-seat.
She suddenly shivers as a feeling of déjà-vu rushes through her… She grabs her safety belt harder than she should. She can’t help it. She’s suddenly scared. Over her shoulder she can see Mateo and Helen in the back of Jason and Chad’s car. A strong, sturdy car…. Like Robert’s car had been….
Kevin checks the safety-belts that are on Daniel and Olivia.
“Is everything alright?” Tyler asks. She can feel the tension.
“Kev?” Scotty tries to read Kevin’s face. Kevin and Justin give each other a look.
“We don’t know.” Justin whispers.
“The lifeguard called it in and suddenly reacted weirdly by strongly suggesting to us to report to the lifeguard-station…. I don’t know. We both feel uncomfortable about it.” Kevin says. Tyler nods that she sees their point. She wraps her arms around Justin.
“Be careful.” She says. Scotty takes the keys from Kevin, but his fingers slide over Kevin’s. He quickly kisses Kevin on the lips.
“I hope everything will be alright….” He says. He takes Kevin in his arms and holds him perhaps a little tighter than is needed. Kevin squeezes Scotty’s hand and he hates to have to let him go.
“My name is Kevin Walker. This is my brother Justin Walker. We were told to come here and report that our brother seems to have gone missing?” Kevin tries to ignore that weird feeling is his stomach. He feels a bit silly, until he notices that, when Justin places his hands on the counter, Justin’s hands shake lightly.
“Can you give us more details? What was he doing last time you saw him?”
“We were surfing. The waves weren’t too high. We hadn’t done it in a while. I got tired and wanted to go back. Tommy said he just wanted to drift around a bit. Enjoy the peace. He said he’d join us soon, but… time passed and no Tommy. We slowly started packing. We were with the entire family and a few friends…. Party of 23 persons….”
“What was your brother wearing?”
“A black wetsuit with blue accents on the shoulders and the waist.” Kevin answers. The man nods with a very serious face.
“Can you wait here, please.” It’s not a question but an order.
The man disappears into one of the other rooms, closing the door behind him. Kevin and Justin look at each other.
“I wonder what’s going on. I’m a little spooked by this.” Justin says.
“It’s probably nothing.” Kevin speaks more to himself than to Justin.
The man is only gone for about 3 minutes, but Justin would not have been surprised if it would have been 3 hours. All sense of time seems to have left him.
“I’m sorry. I had to be sure… One of our boats has found a surfer on his board…”
“Tommy? Is he alright?” Justin asks.
“I’m very sorry, but… I need to ask one of you, or both of you, to identify if the person we found is your brother…”
“Identify?” Kevin whispers.
“The body has been brought to the mortuary of the hospital nearby.”
“Mortuary?” Justin repeats.
“My colleague will bring you there. I sincerely hope it’s not your brother.” The man says apologetically, and both Kevin and Justin can only nod, unable to grasp what has just been told to them.
“Here he is. The John Doe found today…” The man opens one of the drawers and Justin and Kevin step back realizing that there’s a body under the sheet. “Are you ready?”
“No. But let’s get it over with.” Kevin sighs. In his mind he has made up that it simply cannot be Tommy.
The man folds the sheet away and Justin gasps in shock.
“Is this your brother, Tommy Walker?” The man asks. Justin looks at the short hair and the thin face.
“It is not.” Kevin says. Justin looks at him.
“What do you mean, Kev? This is Tommy.” Justin says. Kevin shakes his head.
“Can’t be. Not now. Not …. He’s getting Elizabeth back. He bought a house. He has meetings next week… It can’t be him, Justin. It just can’t be.” He says, his eyes are big and filled the bewilderment of someone who cannot accept what is right under his nose.
“Kev, look at him…. Look. At. Him…. This is Tommy. This is our brother.” Justin speaks in a calm voice. Kevin shakes his head. “It is. You know it.” Kevin turns away and looks up at the man from the mortuary.
“It can’t be him. Can’t.” His eyes are wide and there are no tears.
Justin takes something from his pocket.
“This is my brother’s drivers license. You can see that this is my brother…” Justin replies, surprised by how practical he sounds. There cannot be any further doubt. The man under the sheet is Tommy.
“What happened to him?” Justin wants to know.
“We’re not sure, but we believe that he was attacked by a shark. We think he bled to death. He lost a lot of blood. He seems to have tried to get closer to shore, but….” The man shakes his head.
The explanation is to the point, sufficient, lacking any emotion and Justin feels weirdly disconnected from the person that lies there and that used to be his brother. He knows it is Tommy, but it doesn't feel like he is.
The man places the sheet back over Tommy’s face. The drawer closes again, but the thud is so loud in the ears of both Kevin and Justin that they cringe. It seems to snap Kevin out of his silence.
“Do we need to fill in paper-work? Do you need information?”
“Yes, but, I get the shock must be big and…”
“I’m a lawyer. I want to do this.” Kevin says. Justin looks at him. Kevin is just too calm, as if this doesn’t impact him at all. On one side he’s happy that Kevin is taking over again, but on the other side, he’s now worried over his other brother as well.
“When you called me to go to your mother’s house, this was not what I expected to hear.” Saul shakes his head, his arms tightly around Nora, who’s crying against his chest. She sobs so loud that Saul can feel every shake of her body go right through him. Justin and Kevin don’t know what to say.
They just sit on either side of the kitchen-table and look helplessly at Nora.
“We have to start making arrangements tomorrow…” Kevin eventually says. “I was wondering if we could perhaps gather here and….?” Kevin cannot finish his question.
“How can you be so heartless?!” Nora yells at him.
“Heartless?” Kevin repeats.
“Your brother just died and…”
“Mom, Kevin is right. This is hard, but we have to get together and make arrangements for his funeral.” Justin immediately stands up for Kevin. Nora shakes her head.
“Justin and Kevin are right… “ Jonathan’s voice is calm and soothing. “They are." He emphasizes, when Nora shakes her head. "And you know that. You’re still in shock. And that is a point they have already past. They know that they need to make the next move. You’re not there yet….”
Nora bites her lip, clearly willing to protest, but unable to. Jonathan places his hand on Saul’s shoulder.
“Saul, why don’t you bring her upstairs? Make sure that she goes to bed. We will stay here tonigh, in case she needs someone. I don’t want her all alone in this house tonight.”
“Thank you, Jonathan, I makes me feel better to know that she’s not alone.” Kevin says.
“It goes without saying.” Jonathan nods. “Don’t let your mother’s words get to you, Kev. You and Justin have a thankless job to do. I assume that Kitty and Sarah are next on your list?”
“Yes. First Kitty, then Sarah. Tyler is with Scotty now, we’ll tell them together when we get there.” Jonathan notices the empty look in Kevin’s eyes. When Kevin gets his coat, Jonathan turns to Justin.
“I know you’re both very shocked, but … keep an eye on your brother?” Jonathan asks, Justin nods.
“I don’t know what to say… I’m at a loss for words…” Kitty sits on the couch, wringing her hands. “I don’t believe it. I mean, I know you two are not lying, you would never play such a bad joke on me or mom… Oh, God, how’s mom? Does she know?”
“We told her. Jonathan and Saul will stay at her place tonight.”
“Oh. Good…. Is there anything I can do?” Kitty says.
“Do?” Kevin asks.
“Yes. Help making arrangements for the funeral? Or … Something? Anything?”
“We’ll talk about it tomorrow-morning. When everyone else knows.” Kevin explains.
“Good. Yeah, good.” Kitty nods to herself, still in shock. “I don’t believe it, I still don’t believe it…” She shakes her head.
“We saw him. It’s true. It’s real. It’s … Tommy is really gone.” Justin says again.
“And I still don’t believe it.”
But as Kitty speaks the words, she knows that Tommy is really gone and that he will never come back again. Her eyes fill with tears and Seth sits down with her, offering her his shoulder to cry on. With a motion of his head Justin motions Kevin that it’s time to go. They still have to tell Sarah.
Paige, Cooper and Sarah all look devastated. Crushed.
“And you’re absolutely sure? You saw him?” Sarah asks. Justin and Kevin nod wordlessly. “No mistake? No misunderstanding? No mistaken identity?” There is still some flicker of hope in her eyes. Kevin and Justin shake their heads.
“He’s really gone?” Paige’s voice is so little. “He had made so many changes in his life when he came back… He was becoming the old uncle Tommy again.” She cries softly.
“Wanted his kids, his house, his work.…. He was in charge again.” Sarah whispers.
“I know.” Kevin says.
“I have to tell Holly. We had… all kinds of meetings this week. New accounts to meet… And now… We need to make arrangements for the funeral…
What am I talking about....? I can’t even think anymore.”
“We’ll have to gather tomorrow to make the arrangements…” Justin is practical about it.
“Yes. Tomorrow…. Not now.” Sarah starts to cry again.
“So, who’s going to tell Elizabeth?” Justin asks. They are still in the car, outside Kevin’s house.
“I will.” Kevin answers.
“Want me to come with you?”
“No. I’m ‘heartless’ enough to do this by myself. Will you go tell Tyler and Scotty?”
“Yes. Of course.” Justin nods. He looks at his brother. Kevin seems so lost, like he’s on automatic pilot. While Justin has by now shed a few tears, Kevin seems completely unaffected, even though Justin knows that his brother is deeply shocked.
“Are you alright?” He asks. “Can you handle this? We can do this together.” He offers.
“No.. I’m sure that I will know what to say. I always do. I’m always the one to bring the ‘bad news’, remember?” Kevin's laugh is sarcastic.
“Yes. You’re good at it, but… this is different.”
“I know. But, I can do this.” Kevin promises Justin.
“Shall we go in then?”
“Yes.” Kevin answers, taking a deep breath. He walks up to his house. Somehow his house had never seemed so scary before.
Elizabeth’s curly hair is spread all over the pillow. She had fallen asleep almost immediately after being put in bed and her sleep is still deep, her breathing hardly audible. Calm. Peaceful. Serene. Confident. Kevin stares down at the sleeping girl and he bites his lip.
He reaches out to her, but just when he’s about to touch her, he changes his mind. He closes his eyes tightly as images come back to him. Tommy on his surfboard. Laughing. The sheet being pulled down. Tommy grinning during their lunch a few days ago. Tommy’s white face under the sheet.
Kevin takes a step backwards. He steps away from the image of Tommy and he steps away from Elizabeth. He shakes his head, suddenly feeling completely lost. He turns around and stumbles out the room, knowing that he cannot do this. Not now. Not here. His mind goes blank as he walks down the stairs, searching for the only place where he knows he will find comfort.
Tyler is in tears and Justin holds her close, glad that he can finally let go of his own tears too, the ones that he had been holding back as much as possible. Scotty feels a bit out of place, not wishing to impose on Justin and Tyler, wanting to go upstairs to be with Kevin, but understanding that Kevin might not need him there right now.
The door opens and three pair of eyes focus on Kevin, expecting perhaps also Elizabeth, but he’s alone and he’s as white as sheet. Kevin ignores Tyler and Justin, but focuses on Scotty instead.
“I couldn’t do it. I … I don’t … I don’t have the words… I don’t know what to say…” Kevin’s voice is flat.
Scotty pushes himself away from the kitchen counter, his complete focus on Kevin. He waits.
“How can I tell her? What am I supposed to say? How can I take away her pain?...” Kevin’s eyes fill the tears, that so far had refused to come. Scotty takes a step closer.
“I can’t do this. I failed at…” Kevin’s voice fades. There’s so much pain in Kevin’s face. He opens his mouth, and though his cry is soundless, all three of them can feel the impact. It seems to spur both Scotty and Justin into action, but Tyler grabs Justin’s arm and holds him back. She shakes her head and points at Scotty.
Scotty is already with Kevin. He had expected this collapse from Kevin the moment he had seen Kevin's face. All he can do is wrap his arms around Kevin, hold him close and let him cry out his pain. He rocks Kevin his arms and kisses Kevin’s hair. He whispers sweet words of comfort and he knows that all he can do right now is offer Kevin a safe place to give in to his pain.
“You didn’t fail, baby. You’ll find the words. Don’t worry. You didn’t fail at anything…” He whispers, not sure if Kevin can even hear him, or wants to hear him. His eyes meet Justin’s and he gives his brother-in-law a reassuring smile that everything will be alright and Justin can only feel gratitude for Scotty at this point.
All night, every since discovering that it was Tommy’s body under the sheet, he had waited for something, any reaction from Kevin, but aside from his first reaction of denial, Kevin had seemed professional and practical. Justin feels like he can relax now too, because Kevin finally responds the way that Justin had wanted him to.
He turns to Tyler, who wraps her arms around him.
“He didn’t need you.” She says softly. “All he needed was Scotty.”
“I know. And all I need, right now, is you…” Justin says and he holds her, allowing his own pain to come out as well.
END OF EPISODE ELEVEN
Episode 712 "I remember yesterday" will be posted 14 April 2013