Evelyn found it easier to leave Barnacle Bay knowing her dad was awake. It was a welcome relief. He still had a long way to recovery but this was a start. Saying goodbye to everyone was difficult but she was confident that Casey and Lynn would be able to manage. Now they could focus on the their own family and focus on the problem that was Don and Dana.
“Penny for your thoughts,” Shon asked.
“Is everyone in bed?” She asked.
“Yeah they were exhausted,” Shon told her sitting on the couch. Pulling her into his lap “do you her that?” She shook her head “exactly. Silence. I’ve forgotten what silence sound like.”
“You goof,” Evelyn swatted at him as he tried to kiss her. “What if one of the kids come down?”
“Well,” he smiled “they’ll be scarred for life. Seeing their parents making out on the couch.” He leaned in again and this time Evelyn gave in to the impulse to kiss him.
Monday came all too soon and the kids were all dashing about trying to find homework, backpacks and shoes as the bus pulled up. Laughing in relief, Evelyn watched them get on the bus. Shaking her head she knew their excitement to see their friends will wane as the day wore on and they would be home complaining over the extra work they would have to do to make for the time they missed.
“What time do you have to be at work?” Shon asked from the table.
“10:00,” she replied, “I tried to come in later but they’re anxious for me to take over Henry’s projects.” Walking over to Shon she handed him a list of numbers, “these are all the child psychologists I could find. They seem to know their stuff from what I could find on the web.”
“I’ll give them a call and make appointments,” Shon told her as he took the list.
“Do you really think this is necessary?” Evelyn asked.
“Yes I do,” Shon told her “if there’s an underlying reason for Dana’s behavior it’s best she get’s the help she needs now then waiting for an even bigger problem to come up later. We simply don’t know what their life was like before they came here to live with us.” He smiled at her “plus we’re not singling Dana out, Don is going to see the therapist too. I’d rather we err on the side of caution then be blindsided by something that could have been prevented.”
“I guess it couldn’t hurt,” Evelyn agreed.
“No but it could do a world of good,” Shon said. “After I make the appointments we’ll tell the kids together. Explain to them why therapy is necessary and what they can expect from the sessions.”
“Looking at her watch “hate to leave but I have to get to work.” Standing she gave Shon a kiss before running out the door.
Later that night after supper Shon gathered Don and Dana together. Looking at each of them Shon started “Evelyn and I have decided that it would be best for the two of you to see a therapist….”
“I’m not crazy,” Dana objected “I don’t need therapy. Don does but I don’t.” She crossed her arms obstinately.
“I’ve seen a therapist before,” Don said quietly staring at his feet.
“Yeah it didn’t work obviously,” Dana sneered “thanks to you our new parents think we’re crazy.” Don hunched his shoulders and shrank into himself.
“Dana this decision wasn’t made to point fingers at any one person. It was made to help both of you cope with all the changes. You’ve had a lot things thrown at you in a short period of time. Losing your father, your mother going to prison, being thrown into a new family. We feel you may need help to adjust to these challenges. We want to help you.” Shon told them.
Evelyn continued “the conversations you have with the therapist will be just between you and them. We won’t know what you specifically discussed unless you tell us.”
Shon watched them. Dana glared at her brother before nodding her head. Don barely lifted his eyes from his feet as he mumbled “ok.”
After they trudged up the stairs, Shon turned to Evelyn “why do I feel like I’ve just sentenced them to a fate worse than death?”
Evelyn gave him a reassuring hug before saying “probably because that’s how they took it. Actually they took it better than most adults would. No one wants to be told they’re seeing a psychologist.”
“I suppose not. I still feel it’s for the best.” Shon said giving her a kiss.
As Shon was still on leave from the police department he picked Don and Dana up from school. He sat with Don in the waiting room while Dana went in first.
Upon entering the room where a woman in her thirties sat with glasses perched on the bridge of her nose. Dana glared at her “I don’t need therapy.”
Taking her glasses of the woman smiled “would you like to tell me why you think you don’t need therapy?”
“A lot of people who aren’t crazy talk to therapist’s,” the woman told her. “I understand you recently lost your father.”
“He wasn’t my dad. Windi just said he was,” Dana corrected.
“He raised you like his own until recently. Doesn’t that count for something?”
Shrugging Dana eyed her “he didn’t like me.”
“What makes you think that?”
Clinching her fists Dana approached the woman “he always wanted Windi to send me to a psychologist. Saying I needed help, that something wasn’t right with me. He always took Don’s side against me.”
“Why do you call your mom Windi?”
Sitting down on a nearby chair Dana shrugged “she went to prison. She left me so I replaced her. Evelyn’s my new mom now.”
“Do you like Evelyn?”
“She believes me when I tell her Don was being mean to me. I like people who believe me.”
“Do you tell the truth?”
A cryptic smile spread across her face “not always. It’s fun to see how far I can go or how much people will believe before they figure it out.”
“Do you tell lies to get your brother in trouble?
Smiling proudly “all the time,” she admitted.
“It’s fun and he deserves it,” she frowned “you won’t tell daddy I said that will you?”
“No everything you say in her is just between you and me.”
“Good,” Dana got up, pacing back and forth. “He’s starting to get suspicious and I don’t like it.”
“Yeah I got jealous and did something stupid,” she said stopping, staring straight ahead.
“Why were you jealous?” she complained.
“Do you like this boy Heath?”
“Yes,” she smiled “I’m going to marry him one day.” Her smile faltered “but I’ll have to do something about his dad though. Adam doesn’t like me. He told Heath he couldn’t play with me.” Nodding her head talking mostly to herself “yeah I’ll have to get rid of him.”
“How would you do that?”
“I don’t know,” she shrugged “maybe he’ll die or something.”
“Don’t you think that would be upsetting to Heath, to lose his dad?”
A confused look crossed Dana’s face “why would it? I wasn’t upset when my dad died. If he is I’ll be there to comfort him.”
“Do you think you’d be able to replace his dad?”
“Yes … no …. maybe,” looking crossly at the woman “you’re confusing me.” She rubbed her temples as if her head ached.
“I’m sorry I don’t mean to be confusing. Maybe your confusion comes from your feelings. Maybe you think it’d be wrong to hurt Heath’s dad.”
“I didn’t say I’d hurt him. I just said it’s possible he would die.” She shrugged “there are people who would do it for me.”
Looking at her watch the therapist watched the girl pace back and forth in front of her. “Our time is up for now. I’d like you do something for me until we talk again.” She paused holding out a journal “I want you to write down every time you think about hurting someone in the journal.”
Looking at her suspicion clear in her eyes “why?”
“It will help you control those urges before you act upon them. You really don’t want to hurt people do you?”
Coldly staring at the woman Dana reached for the journal mumbling “I guess not.”
“Good, you can join your dad in the waiting room.”
The therapist looked up as a timid young boy entered the room. Smiling “come in Don, have a seat.”
Hesitantly Don walked in a jerky motion towards a chair. Staring wide-eyed at the woman in front of him. He perched himself on the edge of the chair as ir ready to run at a moments notice.
“Do you know why you’re here?”
Don nodded “because my new parents think we need help adjusting to change.”
“What do you think about that?”
Thinking a moment Don nodded again “it couldn’t hurt, could it?”
“Have you been to a therapist before?”
“Yes but you already knew that.” She nodded. Don sighed “my m.. I mean Windi thought I was a bad person. So she made me go.”
“Why makes you think Windi thought you were a bad person?”
Shrugging Don looked away from her piercing gaze “why do you care?”
“Don I want to help you. The only way I can is if you talk to me and answer my questions.”
Looking at her he sighed “Dana told her lies. She believed them. Talking to a therapist was a better alternative to being locked in a closet.”
Looking up in concern she asked “do your parents lock you in the closet for being bad?”
“Not my new parents. The old ones did. It was mostly Windi but dad didn’t stop her. He tried but she wouldn’t stop.” He bit his lips trembling “you’re not going to tell anyone that I told you that are you?”
“Don’t you think someone should know?”
“I told Shon. It sort of just came out. I was scared after Dana blamed me for hurting her and I was scared I’d be locked away in a closet. I didn’t think he’d believe that I didn’t.”
“Why didn’t you think Shon would believe you?”
“No one ever did before. Why would it be different with him?” Don smiled relaxing his guard just a little. “Shon told me he’d never do that to me.”
“You believe him?”
Nodding his head “he knows how it feels to be locked up in the dark. His dad used to do that to him when he was a kid.”
“Do you like Shon and Evelyn?”
“Yes they’re really nice and they don’t argue and yell at each other.” Don leaned back in his chair “it’s nice to belong to a big family.” He frowned “I’m always worried that Dana will ruin it for me.”
“Why? Doesn’t she like her new family?”
“That’s the problem,” Don looked at the therapist. “She likes them. So she wants them all to herself. She doesn’t like to share. She wants all their attention.”
“What do you think she’ll do?”
“What she always does. Make me out to be the bad guy. People always believe her over me.” He looked at the therapist and smiled grimly “I don’t want her to ruin this for me.”
“Do you ever want to hurt her for what she does to you?”
A frown creased his forehead “no not really. Sure I get angry at her for what she does. I don’t understand why she does it but I don’t want to hurt her. She’s my sister.”
Holding out a journal to the boy the therapist said “I want you write down your feelings when Dana does something to you.”
Reluctantly he took the journal mumbling “ok.”
Walking into the waiting room Don sat down next to Shon. Shon smiled at his woe be gone expression “it wasn’t that bad was it?”
Shrugging he said “guess not.” Before Shon could peruse it the receptionist approached “Mr. Olivia the therapist would like to see you before you leave.”
Turning to the kids Shon joked “look like it’s my tur on the hot seat.” His reward was a nervous giggle from Don.Following the receptionist Shon entered the room. Looking around he approached the desk “Ms McCoy?”
“Oh have a seat Mr. Olivia,” she motioned towards a chair. She smiled slightly as he perched himself uneasily on the edge of the chair reminiscent of this son. “I’m just finishing up my some notes.” Without looking up she stated “I can’t go into detail about what was discussed but your daughter is exhibiting unusual behavior for someone her age. She showing signs of Histrionic Personality Disorder. The receptionist compiled some reading material for you and your wife to read. It is too early to make a difinitve diagnosis but it is a good thing she’s in therapy now. What’s most alarming is her obsession with this boy Heath. It might be a good idea to keep them apart for a while.”
“That shouldn’t be a problem. They were only in town for a short while and have gone home. So I don’t see them seeing each other for a while.” Shon explained.
“That would seem to solve one issue,” the therapist smiled “I want you to be cautious when dealing with Don and Dana. It’s important that Dana not feel singled out or you favor Don over her.” She hesitated before adding “it could mean his safety. She has a strong animosity towards her twin.”
“Would she hurt him or anything?” Shon asked the question dreading the answer.
“Possibly. Right now that harm is taking the form of lies and getting people to turn against him. What she does when she realizes that’s not working is anyone’s guess. I’m hoping it doesn’t progress to anything more serious now that she’s in therapy.”
Shon stared at her as if she had thrown him a grenade. “What about Don?
She smiled at him “he’s a normal little boy concerned that no one will believe him. A lot of that is due to his childhood and his sisters influence. In time he should be able to put this behind him. I would suggest you continue to talk to him about your childhood. It’ll reassure him he isn’t different.”
“Thank you Ms McCoy,” Shon stood up shaking her hand. He took the folder from her of the material for him to read.
“Your welcome,” she smiled encouragingly at him “see the receptionist to set up a schedule for the next appointments.”