DISCLAIMER: Women's Murder Club and its characters are the property of James Patterson, 20th Century Fox Television and ABC. Dollhouse belongs to Joss Whedon and Fox. No infringement intended.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.

Persephone's Dream
By Demeter


He approaches her quietly as not to startle her in her contemplation, listens to her pray for a moment. Not like he could fool her; she straightens and turns to him with a somewhat wry smile.

"You knew where to find me." It's a statement, not a question.

"I happen to make a living out of finding people." Somehow, the joke seems misplaced in this place, so he adds, "It's wasn't your fault." He knows that for certain. Once he knew her true identity, it was easy to research her case and her story. When the boyfriend shoved her daughter so hard she fell and obtained a fatal head wound, she wasn't there because she'd trusted him to look after the child while she was working. The judge wanted to state an example. Then the Dollhouse got involved.

She would have never been in on it, he knows. And if she had known, said boyfriend probably wouldn't be sitting in a prison cell.

They are a lot alike, he and this woman.

"To know it and to feel it are different things."

"One day, you're going to feel it," he says and she gives him a grateful smile, before she turns once more to the headstone with the inscription that says 'Beloved Katie'. "If you give yourself a chance to grieve, eventually you won't want to turn back time so badly."

"You know about that, don't you?" Madelyn says.

It isn't true what they said, that they don't remember anything about their times as 'actives'. They remember the treatments, the false safety of the Dollhouse, the 'engagements'. Not all of it maybe but enough to create a picture. There's a familiarity between them, yet she should only be aware of one brief encounter in Adelle's office.

"I was thinking..." they both said at the same time, making themselves laugh.

Madelyn smiles, her beautiful clear blue eyes lighting up. "I know we're not neighbors anymore but maybe"

"We could do something neighborly anyway? Like having a coffee?"

"I'd like that," she says. November, Mellie, Madelyn, it doesn't really matter anymore because she's one woman now, making her own choices.

"Okay." Awhile ago, Cindy Thomas came to him for an interview, a reporter with her very own story to tell about the Dollhouse, actives ironically named after signs, Libra, Gemini, Scorpio. He's also met the girlfriend, a San Francisco Homicide inspector who has clearly shared his obsession of finding this place. Another happy ending put on hold. Paul can't help but wonder how this particular story will turn out.

"How about now?" he asks hopefully.

"Let's go."

She runs her hand over the headstone another time, tenderly, then they leave together.

"I couldn't stand the thought of her in prison!" Adelle DeWitt is close to tears, a rare occurence that hardly anyone has ever witnessed. She seems desperate though to make the jurors see that the Dollhouse had been such a better fate for her daughter Caroline than an arrest for breaking and entering would have been.

"It would have been on her record forever," she says stubbornly. "These five years would have provided her with the money to build a new life, to do anything she wanted to do. I wanted those choices for her."

"And in that, you took away all of her choices," the DA says.

Everyone's head turns when, in the last row, Caroline gets up and turns to walk out of the courtroom, leaving behind all lies and excuses.

Sarah Thomas gives her daughter a somewhat concerned look, and Cindy makes a face, "Come on, Mom, it's me!"

That's not self-evident, Lindsay thinks as the two of them reunite tearfully and happily. But thank God, you are.

Much later when they have gone for dinner and Cindy has excused herself for the restroom, Sarah tells her, "You saved her. I can never thank you enough for that."

"I didn't do it all on my own," Lindsay says, uncomfortable with the praise.

"Pretty much. I don't know how you got through all of this. I can't even imagine."

"I love her." And that is true no matter whether they can be together or not. With that realization, for the first time ever since Cindy had decided to take the assignment, Lindsay feels a sense of peace.

The End

Return to Women's Murder Club Fiction

Return to Dollhouse Fiction

Return to Main Page