Title: All Grown Up
Characters: Dee, Mother
Setting: Before the manga.
Summary: Dee is leaving for the Police Academy in the morning…
Word Count: 417
Disclaimer: I don’t own FAKE, or the characters. They belong to the wonderful Sanami Matoh.
They each had their own little strip of wall in the orphanage, marked with their name. Every year on their birthdays they’d stand barefoot, heels pressed in tight against the baseboard, pulling themselves up as straight and tall as they could while Mother made that all-important mark. How much would they have grown in a year? It was a birthday tradition as important to the children as their birthday gift and cake, proof that they were growing up, thriving on Mother’s love and care.
Dee stood looking at the marks that charted his growth from child to man. Of all the children Mother had raised, he’d been here the longest, but tomorrow he’d be leaving. How Mother had raised the money, he didn’t know and would never ask; he’d told her he wanted to become a police officer and she’d found the means to make his dream a reality. Now he’d been accepted into the Police Academy and he vowed he wouldn’t let her down. He wanted her to be proud of him.
“You’ve grown so tall! I remember kneeling to make that first mark; you were so small. You’d been here two years.” Mother’s quiet voice came from behind him and he turned to look down at the diminutive figure of the woman who had raised him from a baby.
“You’d have to stand on a chair to mark my height now,” he teased.
“Then that’s what I’ll do. Fetch a chair, boy, let’s do this properly.”
Doing as he was ordered, he kicked off his shoes and stood straight and tall, head up, back to the wall as mother reached above his head.
“There. My word, look at that! You must have grown a good two inches since last year! Help me down, dear.”
Smiling, Dee offered his arm as Mother stepped carefully to the ground.
“You’ve turned into a fine young man, my boy. But never forget, no matter where you go, you’ll always have a place here if you need it,” she told him, patting his arm.
He bent to hug her.
“I know, Mother. Thank you, for everything. I’ll write, I promise, and I’ll visit whenever I can.”
“I know you will; you’re a good boy, Dee.”
“I try to be.”
He looked back again at the marks on the wall. Everyone had to grow up and go out into the world eventually, but Dee knew that as long as those marks remained, he would always come back. This was his home.
The Mother's Son Remix