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Castles In The Sand
By Demeter


Lindsay feels like she's going to have that breakdown after all. At least, she's not alone in this anymore; Jill has flown in from San Franscisco to offer some legal and friendly support. Lindsay isn't quite sure which she needs more at the moment.

Cindy sits on a chair, legs drawn up under her. She's still wearing the green nightgown, pretty much oblivious to her surroundings as she's suckling on the lollipop the woman in the lab coat gave her before she was taken away by more FBI personnel.

Ashe stays close to her. Lindsay isn't sure yet what exactly that means, but she knows she doesn't like it. She wants nothing but to take Cindy out of this place right away, but she's afraid to approach her again.

"Hey. You."

Topher Brink flinches when she addresses him and ironically, he seems just as dejected as Lindsay feels. Right. They closed down his little playground. The urge to do this guy bodily harm is rising again. He might be young and naive and been following orders, but he seems to have been a little too excited about it.

"You can make her her normal self again, right? With that imprint scan."

He shrugs, then lifts his cuffed hands. "Theoretically, yes."

Practically, she'd drag him up to that room if necessary. "And she'd be the same she was before?"

"Pretty much."

"What the hell does that mean?"

"Of course she wouldn't remember her engagements – I'd have to put that back..."

"Never mind," she cuts him off. "Let's do it."

She walks over to where Cindy sits and reaches out to touch her shoulder very carefully. Cindy turns to her, all earlier hesitation forgotten. Her smile is just turning the knife.

"Honey. Will you come with me?"

"Do you have to do it now?" Jill asks nervously. "We can't trust these people."

"Still, the only way to have her back into her own body is the chair." Ashe comes to Lindsay's rescue unexpectedly. "Mr. Brink is not stupid. He knows what depends on him doing this right."

"Not stupid. Thank you very much. Hell, yes, I can put the girl back together."

Jill smiles at him sweetly. "We appreciate that. It might take a few years off."

Lindsay thinks if this goes on much longer, she might be the one to have to be put together again but she gives her friend a grateful smile.

"I'm sorry, baby. I'm so sorry." No one is going into the chair tonight. That becomes pretty clear even before the D.A. storms the room claiming that none of the victims are being 'treated' before their ability to give consent has been determined.

It doesn't matter at the moment. Lindsay sits on the floor, Cindy clutched to her, as she recalls them walking through the door. The moment Cindy saw the chair, she panicked. "Don't make me. Please, don't make me," she had begged, in her eyes naked fear.

"They, um, don't usually act like that..."

"Thanks for the reminder," Jill snaps at Brink.

For Lindsay, their voices vanish into the background as she slowly rocks Cindy and promises her once more that there'll be no treatment for her. Tonight, that is; she can't really promise for the future.

Then again, as she runs her hand over soft red strands and breathes in the scent of Cindy's shampoo, some flowery fragrance, she can't help thinking that they might have come to an dead end.

Maybe wanting to have the woman she loves back in body and soul is really asking for too much.

"Can we go home?" Cindy asks. It's not like she knows that it's where she belongs, home with Lindsay, because right now she's caught in a world of confusion between who she is and who they made her, and the void they created.

Finally, Lindsay gets them both up from the floor. "Sure we can."

The End

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