4. The Moon

Lily was curled up on her mother’s laps while her father sat at their side. Zinnia, too, was seating in the back of the car, near Lily and her mother. Everyone understood they situation, so they all kept quiet about the little girl’s unsafe seating location. Mrs. White was constantly kissing her daughter, sometimes stroking her cheek on Lily’s head. Mr. White patted her back while he firmly held on her hand, not minding the fact that Lily was only a tiny bit away from drawing his blood with her nails.

Zinnia kept thinking about the moment the paramedic had checked the girl’s upper part of the body. Neither her and the paramedic said anything about it because the girl seemed fine, but it was probably the most problematic thing. Lily had signs of injections on her arms. Zinnia frowned hard. It’s situation like this one that made her remember how much was her squad needed, how much joy she could bring, and how people can be such low-lives.

‘Scum… they drugged and raped her for years…’

The car stopped, indicating that they were finally at the hospital. Covered in a clean blanket taken from the ambulance, Lily was carried by her father inside as he and her mother, along with Zinnia and her squad, followed the two paramedics. A doctoress with two nurses were already waiting for them and lead the group to a waiting room near where Lily is going to be thoroughly checked.

Martha, Lily’s mother, was handed over some temporary slippers which Lily then wore. One of the nurses motioned Mrs. White to follow the doctoress and the nurse that went ahead. Martha put an arm over Lily’s shoulders and held them, helping her to stay steady on her own feet. After two or three steps, though, Lily looked behind her, toward Christopher, her father. Lily raised one arm toward him while with the other she firmly held on to her mother’s dress.

Chris was visibly torn. He didn’t want to let go of his daughter, even if it was for just a short amount of time, but he also knew he couldn’t go with her at the moment. Zinnia watched the man tightly clenching his fists. She sighed, scratched her head and got up.

“Come on kid, let’s go.”

Saying so, Zinnia gently held Lily’s outstretched hand and stared at her eyes. The girl seemed to calm down a bit as she accepted to leave her father behind. Still, Lily stole one or two side-glances in his direction before she entered the examination room.

As the doctoress prepared the equipment to make the first test, Zinnia had to take Martha away, leaving Lily to the two nurses. While the two nurses give the little girl a set of hospital clothes and explained to her what was about to happen in as gentle a manner as possible, the Sergeant told the mother the cold truth.

The first test was to check about what kind of damage the drugs administered by the two kidnappers made to her body. Secondly, they would check for any type of disease she could have (most importantly, if she had contracted HIV/AIDS). They then would proceed to make sure her organs and body were relatively fine. Lastly, Lily’s mental health would be checked by a psychologist.

A little over an hour later, Lily was already on her way to the psychologist’s studio, situated not too far away from the waiting room. Zinnia was the one to accompany her as Martha, even if she wanted to go, had to talk with her husband. The Sergeant choose to take a brief walk outside and smoke a little to clear her mind. Samantha, Frederick and Marco were already on their way home. The three had wanted to go back to work, but considering the heavy load that had been today’s events, Zinnia ordered them to go take a rest.

Oleander just vacantly stared at the clouds in the sky, her mind blank and her face expressionless. She puffed her smoke toward them, as if trying to make the clouds dirty. She repeated this action a few times, before she sucked in the last bit of her cigarette and closed her eyes. She exhaled the smoke before she returned inside the hospital, waiting in front of the psychologist’s studio.

After some time, the psychologist called her in. As she entered, Zinnia eyed her surroundings suspiciously, trying to understand why she was called. Lily was the first to speak, at the same time pointing toward the middle of the psychologist’s desk.

“Olly, Ashley lies! She says she doesn’t see them!”

Ashley was the psychologist. There was no way anyone would let a victim like Lily stay alone in a room with a male, adult or not. Zinnia looked over the desk with a puzzled look before replying.


“The flowers!”

Said Lily, her face almost forming a pout while both her hands were on her hips. Anyone would have thought this scene was extremely cute, if it wasn’t for the subtle indication that something was wrong with Lily, as she was currently hallucinating. Out of curiousity, Zinnia asked

“What kind of flowers?”

“A blue striped carnation, of course!”

Oleander involuntarily smiled as she noticed that Lily had become somewhat more open.

“Wow, you sure know some pretty complicated names.”

Lily beamed her a incredibly fascinating smile as she spoke

“I love flowers!”

The conversation was interrupted by Ashley’s voluntary coughing, and Zinnia understood that she still had something to see. The psychologist handed Lily a white paper and various coloured pencils as she gave Lily some instruction.

“Please Lily, draw the flowers you see.”


“Yes, I really liked your previous drawing and I want to keep it, but if I do, your parents will probably become very jealous! So please make a second one for them, okay?”


Lily accepted Ashley’s demands and nodded. The Sergeant was pleased and intrigued by the method the psychologist had just used, but her attention was quickly caught by Lily’s actions. The flower she drew was indeed striped, but it was red and not blue. Zinnia stared at Ashley, trying to confirm her suspicion of Lily being daltonic; not that daltonism worked like that, it was just one of the Sergeant’s misconceptions. The psychologist just shook her head and took out a deck of coloured cards after Lily was done drawing.

Ashley proceeded to ask Lily about each colour, making her visibly bored and maybe a little irritated as, how she had said many times over, she had already done this. Zinnia was confused by the time the little test ended. Not once had Lily gotten the colours wrong. After that Ashley made a nurse bring an Ishihara colour test plate, and it was once again confirmed that Lily was not daltonic.

Ashley and Lily chit-chatted a bit more before the little girl was escorted by the Sergeant back to her parents. It was incredible how easily Ashley had managed to bond with the girl, and even more so how she managed to let Lily be a bit more outgoing. As she wasn’t needed anymore, Zinnia too, decided to go home and rest, but not before she said goodbye to Lily and made a proposal to her parents.

“I think you daughter should learn some self-defense techniques, and if you don’t mind me, I would gladly teach her, free of charge.”

Chris and Martha readily accepted and didn’t stop saying how grateful they were to her even after she went away.

Some time later the doctoress came with the results of the analysis: the organs are all okay, though her body clearly shows symptoms of atrophy, which could easily be cured with some rehab; and fortunately, Lily was perfectly sane at the moment. The hard part came when the doctoress explained about the drugs/aphrodisiacs applied directly into Lily’s veins. The unique mixture used was one they had never seen before, and it appeared the constant use had altered permanently the occipital lobe of Lily’s brain, which explained her hallucinations.

Lily didn’t understand why, after the sad doctoress walked away, her parents hugged her so fiercely they almost hurt her.

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