I'm technically proficient

...despite certain attitude issues

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phoning home [RP for Lee]
standing in the elevator
lockhart_md
After three hellish days in detox, Abby is finally feeling well enough, relatively speaking, to settle into a routine of sorts at the inpatient rehab center she's checked herself into. Throughout the detox process, throughout the tremors, nausea, debilitating headaches, and insomnia, all she's thought of (other than having a drink) is Lee and Lily. She's cried more than she'd ever admit, missing her husband and daughter and home almost to the point that she feels it physically. She almost regrets saying she needs to do this alone, but knows she'd never be able to do it if this wasn't her decision and hers alone.

But she still needs them. More than she's ever admitted to herself before. She takes a shower, subconsciously wanting to be fresh and clean for her first allowed phonecall after a successful completion of the detox process. She makes her way from her room to the main floor where she waits, impatiently, for her allotted time slot to begin.

When she finally gets on the phone, she freezes for a moment, her fingers forgetting what to do, what numbers to dial. When she shakes herself and dials the familiar numbers of Lee's phone, she can feel her heart banging around in her chest. What can he think of her now? Maybe he won't even want to talk to her. Maybe he's relieved to be rid of her and the mess she's made of her life. She wouldn't blame him, and she can feel her palms sweating as she listens to the phone ring.

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Abby leans into him automatically, still holding onto Lily. She lifts her head to look at him, her eyes finally filling slightly. Hey...

You look good. He means it. Despite the tears making her eyes shine, she looks better than she has in a while. He hadn't realized until now how much the drinking had started to affect her appearance. The changes too subtle when to notice when he saw her every day.

Thanks. She gives him a small smile, grateful that he's noticed. I've been...feeling a lot better. It's true; without the constant self-medicating she'd been doing, she's sleeping better, has more energy, and her appetite has returned.

He kisses her cheek lightly before moving away slightly. He wants Lily to have all the time she can with her, and just being in the same room with Abby has always been enough to lift his spirits. I'm glad. Really, really glad. He gestures at the wrapped present they brought with them. This is from Neela. She said she wanted you to have this now. I figured we'd do Christmas together once you're home. Lily won't know the difference.

She shifts Lily to her hip so she can look at her, brushing her hand over the little girl's curls and kissing her forehead. She nods at Lee's words, glancing at the present, surprised Neela's sent something. Yeah, that sounds good...Oh, Lily, I think you got bigger! Did you get bigger?

Big! The little girl agrees, mimicking Abby and patting her mother's hair.

Lee smiles at the two.
She has, Molly's gone through her clothes and pulled out everything that doesn't fit.

My big girl...She murmurs to Lily, then looks at Lee, giving him a strained smile. She's missed too much, she's missing too much. Yeah? How's Molly?

He sits down before answering her. Settling in. Lily's not sure what to make of her just yet.

She sits down beside him, Lily settled on her lap. No? She usually warms up to new people pretty quickly...She can't help but worry.

He shrugs. New routine, yet another caregiver. It's been a revolving door since Lily's fall. He's obviously not worried about Lily needing to adjust to the new change.

Yeah, I guess so. On top of worried, she feels guilty as well, even though she knows they'd be needing a nanny even if she was home now. She presses a kiss to Lily's head before looking at Lee again. Do you want anything? There's coffee... In her years of being in and out of the program, some things never change, where there's alcoholics, there's coffee. We could walk...or stay here, too, that's fine. She's nervous, and it shows, though she tries to hide it.

He shakes his head, he doesn't want or need anything beyond spending time with her. I'm fine but yeah, if you want to walk...He can tell she's nervous and doesn't want to make this any more nerve-wracking for her than it all ready is. He'll worry about her reasons for being antsy later, when he's alone. I only want to know how you are, if you need anything...

She shakes her head, figuring they can stay here if he's fine with it. I'm okay...I'm working on it, you know? She tells herself to relax, the fact that he's here should prove that he doesn't hate her, still wants to be with her. Maybe that there's a chance he'll trust her again.

He nods, any other time he'd push her for more, ask for a real answer. Now? He's all too aware of how fragile things are and he's afraid to push, to give her any reason to think maybe she's better off without him, that she'll find sobriety easier on her own. Victoria was asking about you...He tries to change the subject to something safe.

Yeah? How's she? She rubs Lily's back as the little girl cuddles into her.

Same as always. He plays with the edge of Neela's wrapped package as he talks. Happy enough with life, wants us to visit more. Thinks I'm lying about the camel.

She can't help but snicker softly at his comment about the camel. If only, huh?

He smiles then too, nodding. Yeah...He reaches over and places a hand on her knee, giving into the impulse for any physical contact with her. People have missed you at work.

She leans closer to him when he touches her, though her stomach clenches with the mention of work. Um...do they know?

He bites the side of his cheek, then nods. Not everyone. Neela does and of course Wexler and Anspaugh. Sam just knows you're away from home for a while.

She nods, grateful it hasn't become common knowledge. I...thanks. Can we keep it that way for now?

Sorry for disappearing last night; internet quit on me.

I assumed you'd tell people if and when you were ready. He's not going to betray her confidence or her privacy.

Thanks. She tentatively rests her head on his shoulder, not wanting to push it with him but realizing how much she's missed him.

He relaxes a bit as she leans on him, his fingers combing through her hair out of habit. So...want to hear a funny story? Work-related.

She smiles a little at that. Yeah, of course.

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