Feb. 18th, 2017

lesliethompkins: (clinic)
When it all began, Leslie didn't think anything of it. The exterior of the clinic is often tagged with graffiti of some sort or another. It's an inevitability in the East End. It's always painted over in the first 12 hours. It seems to discourage others, albeit briefly. Several days later, someone chucked a brick through her office window. She happened to be in it at the time. She wondered if her heart would ever stop racing. It turned out to be a brick chiseled out of the cornerstone. Then the lobby was vandalized on a rare night when she'd actually slept at home for a change. Overturned chairs. Computers smashed. Office supplies scattered everywhere. There was also more graffiti on the walls. In a chaos of colors and unrecognizable symbols, there was a single word neatly sprayed in white.

Leave.

[x-posted: Barbican]
lesliethompkins: (diagnose)
Several days later, a walk through the neighborhood proved fruitful. With varying degrees of hesitancy, a handful of local business owners admitted to similar misfortunes. One had reported the incident to the police but no action had been forthcoming. The others had cleaned up and returned themselves to work, knowing there was nothing that could really be done. Those who'd lived and worked in the East End for decades weren't about to let a little spray paint and a few broken windows drive them away.

The day ended on a sad and unsettling note. Leslie stepped into the corner store to buy herself something to drink. The face behind the counter was unfamiliar.

"Is Anthony finally taking a day off?" She placed a five dollar bill between them.

The teenager took the money and started to make change. "Didn't you hear?"

Leslie's heart sank. "Hear what?"

"The old man died of a heart attack the day before yesterday. I guess his daughter is going to run the place now. I haven't met her yet. I hear she's --- You alright, lady?"

Stunned, Leslie couldn't find the words to reply.

[x-posted: Barbican]
lesliethompkins: (young)
[One decision can make all the difference. You are who you've become because of it. It set everything in motion. It helped shape the individual you are today. It landed you that job. It put you in the right place at the right time. It caused you no end of grief. Right or wrong, it had an enormous impact. Now imagine...

You made a different decision.]


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Many letters have been written over the years. Some she's even had the courage to send. More often than not, they're interrupted half way through and later abandoned. From one day to the next, so much could change. She'd pick up the pen to continue her correspondence only to discover what she'd already written was largely irrelevant. She couldn't bring herself to throw them away so she tucked them into a journal. Inside the same journal were pictures of friends and family, people she hadn't seen in over a decade. Occasionally she would pull them out and wonder what they were doing right that moment. Wondered if they missed her as much as she missed them. Then an emergency would arise and she would tuck them away as before, safe for later. It was as close as she came to ritual.

Tonight she picked up her pen again. This time it would be the last. The letter opened with its usual greeting.

My dear Alfred,

I can close my eyes and imagine the turning of the leaves. The temperatures are beginning to fall. The wind is beginning to bite. I haven't seen or felt Fall in Gotham in twelve years. Here it's humid and hot. It rains constantly. Pours and pours, like there's no end in sight. Not at all like what Fall should be. I promised myself I would see the leaves this year. I've been away too long, allowed myself to be swept into one tragedy after another. I don't regret my work. I've never regretted my work. I just wish it hadn't taken me so far away. I'll be on a plane next week. I don't expect to see you when I land. You or Bruce. That would be too much to ask. Too much to expect after all this time. I hope you can find it in your hearts to forgive me. For not being there when you needed me the most. I'll see the leaves and then I'll be gone again. Know that I think of you always.

With love,
Leslie



[x-posted: Barbican]

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Dr. Leslie Thompkins

February 2017

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