Tales from the Flipside (3)
Published Oct 14, 2010

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Tales from the Flipside (3: Better and Worse)

Tales from the Flipside (3: Better and Worse) The Pennylane Institution of Psychiatric Services (PIPS) Jesse Simanski has just spent an hour visiting his twin. Now he is thinking that bringing him to this place was a mistake. He is thinking about how much this place is charging to continue this mistake. And the more he thinks about these things, the angrier he gets. He takes the stairs two at a time, but manages to reign in his temper enough that when he reaches the office door of Dr. Evelyn Elfman, he doesn’t kick it. He knocks instead. But enters without waiting for an invitation. Before today, Evelyn has spoken to Jesse a few times on the phone, but has only met him in person at the time of Jonothan Simanski’s admission. Just enough exposure to be aware that what Jesse thinks tends to come right out of his mouth, particularly when he’s upset. Quite like the tendency of a child. Initial assessment? Arrested development. And she wouldn’t be at all surprised to find that it started at the age of 16. “I got your message. If this is about the bill, you’re not going to see any money from me until the end of the week. If that.” “Well, alright. But I didn’t ask you here to discuss payment, Mr. Simanski.” “Just ‘Jesse.’ ‘Mr. Simanski’ bugs me. And if we’re not talking about the bill, let’s talk about Jono. Because I’ve just been to see him, and let me tell you, so far I’m not impressed with the work you people are doing here. You kept me from seeing my brother for 10 days and now he seems just as bad—worse—than when I brought him in here. Explain that to me.” “Jesse, your brother’s illness is deeply entrenched—” “Look, lady, I’ve been taking care of my brother for nine years, I don’t need you to tell me how sick he is. I only brought him here because I couldn’t get him to stop his counts and he’d been at it for so long he was seeing things and his hands were bloody—” “Having your brother admitted here was the right thing to do, Jesse.” “Was it? Which part of ‘worse’ did you not understand? I can watch him get worse at home, I don’t need to pay you people to do it for me.” “Jesse. Please. I will discuss this with you, in depth, for as long as you like. But it would be more productive, for both of us, if you would sit down, and slow down.” Evelyn sits, but there is a significant pause before Jesse, exercising every ounce of his available self control, also sits.
“Fine. Start discussing. In depth.”
“The first week after your brother was admitted, he wouldn’t talk. Three days ago he finally started talking in therapy, for a total of two hours he talked to me, but afterward he became so agitated I’ve been unable to make any progress since that session. You signed documentation backing his choice to take no medication for his condition, short of absolute emergency—” “That’s right. I did.” “--which leaves us limited options for the times his symptoms become so intense he is incapable of participating in therapy.” “Are you saying you can’t help my brother without doping him?” “No, I’m not saying that at all. But progress in his treatment is likely to be very time-consuming if we cannot treat his symptoms with medication.” “Do you know what you’d have to do to get my brother to take any drugs? You’d have to hold him down and shoot him up. Let me ask you, how much chit-chat do you think you’re going to get out of him once you do that? Short answer? None. We’ve been down the doctor-approved dope road. It didn’t go well. So take my word for it or don’t—the answer is still no drugs!” “I’m not trying to convince you to change your mind, Jesse. I’m only trying to explain that improvement in your brother’s condition is going to take time. But if you work with me, help me understand the history involved, I think we can shorten that time considerably.” Consenting to anything this doctor has to say isn’t high on Jesse’s to-do list today. He has seen his brother’s current state of aggravated misery, and this annoying woman is responsible for that. Of course, so is he, for bringing him here. He could, and maybe should, just take Jono home, and be done with this place. But it had been bad at home, and on the off-chance this could actually help… “Jesse, what can you tell me about your brother’s wife? Jonothan has only told me how Danielle came to live with the two of you, how things were difficult the first month, and once she explained why she’d left her parents Jonothan told her she could stay as long as she wished. That is the point he stopped cooperating with therapy. If you can add to that information, it may help me reach him.” Jesse takes a deep breath. He’ll give the doctor what she wants. For now.
“Yeah. That happened. That’s when they started to hit it off.”
Once Dani revealed what had driven her from her own home, things began to change for the better in the Simanski home. Jono stopped avoiding Dani, and since she had a lot she needed someone to hear, he started listening. When she’d finished spilling out the mess that was Danielle Marquis, Dani started listening to Jono. He was reluctant about sharing at first, but she was patient. She wasn’t going anywhere. They were stuck with each other, and maybe that wasn’t so bad. Jesse’s trust took longer for Dani to gain. Jono’s acceptance helped that along, but it wasn’t what finally won Jesse over to considering Dani a member of the family. It was seeing how she was with his brother, the effect she had, months before Jono and Dani figured out how to be anything more than friends. She was good for Jono, and once convinced of that, Jesse was contented. It was like the three of them had never had a problem. Dani had been living in the Simanski house for four months when her parents finally found her, and came to collect. Dani, now in her third trimester, answered the door. Had it been Jono or Jesse to answer the doorbell, Marsilius and Suzanne Marquis never would have crossed the threshold. As it happened, the first the twins knew of the Marquis’ arrival was when their outrage began blasting from the interior of the house. Jesse and Jono arrived at a run, and in a matter of seconds, everything Dani had told them about her parents was verified by their own eyes and ears. Prior to the Marquis invasion, Jesse (more than Jono) had doubted some of the story—he hadn’t quite thought she was lying, but he’d suspected she was over-dramatizing. After meeting her parents for themselves, neither twin ever doubted a word Dani said on the subject. Marsilius and Suzanne had far too much to say to allow their daughter to finish a sentence. In rapid succession they expressed their disgust at the living conditions. Their indignation that she’d hidden herself from them. Their disappointment that she’d gone and gotten herself pregnant by one of these low-life miscreants (they didn’t seem to care which Simanski was actually responsible for this). The embarrassment her escapades had brought on the family. And finally, their demand that she return home with them. Tout de suite. To Jesse, it was so unbelievably over-the-top it was sort of funny. Marsilius and Suzanne ignored the presence of Jesse and Jono altogether until the level of Jono’s voice made it impossible for them to hear only themselves.
“Leave her alone and get out of this house!”
“You two! Don’t you speak to me! We’ll have the authorities here in minutes—holding our daughter against her will, we’ll see you both in prison—” “I’m not here against my will! I’m right where I want to be!”
Dani bravely delivered this line after running behind Jono, which somewhat lessened the effectiveness of her testimony.
“You terrible, ungrateful little girl, after all we’ve done for you, and the wedding just four weeks away—” “I’m not marrying Roch LeBeau! I’m marrying HIM!” She’d indicated Jono when she’d said this, which was as much news to Jono and Jesse as it was to her appalled parents. Up to that point in time, Jono and Dani had never discussed marriage, or even a relationship beyond platonic friendship. “You don’t know what you’re saying. Look at you! Reduced to a common consort of criminals, you’re clearly hysterical, out of your mind along with these two—” Jesse, who’d so far said nothing, decided it was time to put an end to this bad joke.
“Criminals are dangerous. You do know that, right? Especially if you’ve got something we want. Do you have something we want?”
“How much money do you have on you, Marky?” The implied threat brought Marsilius’ sputtering up short. Which was understandable, if he believed half of what he was saying about the nature of the young men living in the house. “Boo!”
Jesse combined this with characteristic silliness that so unsettled Marsilius, the pompous hothead jumped back like crazy was catching.
Marsilius and Suzanne Marquis fled shortly thereafter, and never set foot inside the Simanski house again. In the immediate wake of their departure, Dani turned to Jono and he held her without hesitation. Then she kissed him, and not just with gratitude. From that evening forward, their relationship was about as far from platonic as it could get. Two months later, Jono and Dani married with all the fanfare of signing a document at the Valley town hall. Their ring exchange and first kiss as newlyweds on the town hall steps were a little more romantic than the marriage paperwork, but the most telling thing about it as far as Jesse was concerned was that it took place outdoors. And Jono hardly noticed. Jonothan Julius Simanski, Jr. was born without complication a brief two weeks later. He got his name via the simple fact that for most of the second and all of the third trimester of Dani’s pregnancy, everyone in the Simanski house was referring to Dani’s belly as “Jon Junior” and no other name was ever proposed. Once he was born, the household took to calling him “Jules” for the sake of less confusion with his father’s name. As for Marsilius and Suzanne, they moved to their vineyard in France about a month after the ugly scene at the house, and made sure Dani knew it was all her fault. To hear them tell it, she’d shamed them right out of the Valley. Yet for all that, they were still Dani’s parents. After Jules’ birth, Dani reestablished contact with them with a few emails and a call once or twice a year… “…but the rules for keeping it civil between them? No mention of Jono or me, and no mention of their grandson. Like we don’t exist. How demented is that?” “Where is Danielle now?” “That’s where she is now. In France with her sick twist parents.” “She left Jonothan and her child to live with these parents?” “Yeah, well, that’s… that’s partly my fault--” Jesse is interrupted by the ring of Evelyn’s cell phone. She glances at the text message
[Code White >> PT 00186]
and immediately stands. “I’m sorry, Jesse. We’ll have to continue this later… there seems to be some confusion as to Jonothan’s whereabouts--”
“What?!” “Oh hell no you did not just tell me you lost my brother!”
“Hold on now, Jesse—it’s just an oversight, I’m sure. All things considered, it’s highly unlikely he’s not in the building—”
“Jesse wait—” ((Special thanks to…

* Jesse’s v-neck t-shirt by Maaak at TSR
* Jesse’s tank top (Alice Cooper) by Adele_SimMaker at TSR
* Jono’s longer sleeve t-shirt by tenshiak at TSR
* Bellamy Hart & Jono’s loose fit t-shirt by mason666 at TSR
* Info on custom content pictured that has appeared in earlier episodes can be found in previous credits (Flipside and Cribts)
* My gracious thanks and apologies to all those CC creators I may have failed to credit by name

> Yes, all you excellent readers, you have made it to the end of the Flipside (3) credits—I think this calls for “You rock!” buttons all around :D))

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emilymarie0201Feb 21, 2011

HAHA!! I can not stop laughing at Jesse's comment! "Oh hell no you did not just tell me you lost my brother!!" XD priceless!

drewsolteszOct 26, 2010

Wonderful continuation, well structured and paced. great shots~

snowangel993Oct 23, 2010

awesome!!!! \:\)  I really like the fact that you're giving background information it's very interesting \:rah\:

SuziShazamOct 23, 2010

loved it...can't say anything else but...great work! \:\)

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