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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Good. She obviously likes saying the new word. Good...

Lee smiles at the little girl and leans over to kiss her nose. Very good. The best.

My good girl. Abby agrees, tugging gently on a little curl.

Lee sits back against the couch, happy to watch Abby and Lily together. You know, she took the hair brush and smacked me with it this morning. I don't think she likes those curls as much as you do.

But you're so pretty, baby girl. She insists, playing the curls through her fingers. My pretty Lily. She looks at Lee. Are you using the detangler?

The what? He has no idea what she's talking about and it shows in the puzzled expression on his face.

She looks at him blankly for a moment, not sure how he couldn't know what she's talking about. The detangler. The orange bottle in the bathroom...You spray it on her hair when it's wet and it makes the tangles easier to comb out...

I thought that was yours...He's never paid much attention to her collection of bottles and things in the bathroom.

It's Lily's. She shakes her head. Use it, trust me, it's a hell of a lot easier and she doesn't get so mad.

He nods, making a mental note to use the orange bottle the next time he washes Lily's hair. How am I supposed to know these things?

She shakes her head again. I don't know...it says 'detangler' on it...You've probably seen me use it on her...

He looks down as he mutters, I don't really pay that much attention when you take care of her baths.

She shrugs. It's okay...now you know.

He sill feels foolish, thinking of the tears he could have avoided if he'd known about the detangler. Still think she'd rather have you doing her hair.

She sighs at that, wondering if he's trying to make her feel guilty for being here - if he is, it's working. I'm sure you do fine.

He wasn't trying to make her feel guilty at all and doesn't know what to make of her sigh. Sure. She's clean and her hair's not a tangled mess...but I'm not you.

I know you're not. She sounds frustrated now, though she keeps her voice down. I wish I was there, too, you know.

He realizes that he may be making her feel bad and reaches over to pat her knee. I didn't mean...I'm sorry. I only wanted you to know we miss you. Need you.

She nods. I know you do. I miss you too, need you.

He scoots a little closer, drapes his arm around her shoulders. You know there's going to be a board hearing when you come back...I'm obviously not going to be present but I was thinking that once you've complied with whatever disciplinary measures they dole out, maybe we could consider taking some time off. To just be together as a family.

She leans against him, her first thought being how she's going to take more time off on top of what she's already had to take this year, but the thought is soon shadowed by the knowledge that they need time as a family. I think we should. We need that.

Maybe just a few days. He knows she has residency requirements and he doesn't want to ask her to repeat a year, but he knows they need some down time as well. Take Lily and leave our phones, the laptop at home.

She nods. That sounds...really good. She runs her hand over Lily's head. You'd like that, huh Lily? Mama and Daddy all to yourself for a few days?

Mama mine. She tilts her head to look up at Abby.

I'd like that. He agrees with their daughter.

That's right, baby. She kisses Lily's lips when the little girl looks up at her.

Lily blows a raspberry at the kiss.

I've been trying to get her to stop doing that...He chuckles as he wipes the slobber off Lily's chin with the side of his thumb.

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