Chapter 17--Further Investigations
It didn't take long to reach the police station. The moment you got there the police immediately stopped the car at the entrance, got out of the car and then opened the passenger's door, taking a good look at his passengers.
"We're here," he said, and you all got out of the car, your legs now so numb that it took you a bit of time while standing to get used to the pins and needles. Everyone took off their helmets and laid their weapons in the car, and the police didn't object.
"Where are we going now?" you asked.
"We're heading to a small courtroom," he said, motioning you all to follow him. "None of you are in trouble; we just need to ask you a couple more things to get things straight before we decide what to do."
The seven of you now made your way to the main building. You started to feel a little doubtful as you heard your footsteps echo in the empty halls, noticing that every single room was empty. Had it really been only a few hours ago when you told your friends about your first assumption with Mr. Lacitier? Dang. It felt like a really long time ago now. It must have been really late into the night then. Then it suddenly occurred to you that you haven't even finished any of your homework, that you owe your teachers a big-time explanation about Trudy's arrest and yours and Melanie's inability to complete your homework.
What were you going to say to them anyway? Just like the police before when Hiro told them about his stolen microbots, they would think that your story is nonsense. They wouldn't believe you. This night has already been crazy enough, and you just wished that it could just end already, that everything in your life would just get back to the way it once was, even if it meant that you would never be able to see your parents again.
Is it just you, or is life just not fair?
"(Y/N)?" You heard Hiro's voice, so distant, even though he was walking right next to you, his fingers intertwining with yours.
You turned your face to him. "I'm so sorry for bringing you into this mess, Hiro. You didn't deserve this. It's my fault."
"Hey," Hiro whispered again as he squeezed your hand. You were so used to him doing this for so long that you relaxed in his grip. "Remember what I said? I care about you. You'll never be a burden to me. I'll never leave you alone again. You're my..." Here he choked out the next word, unsure of what your reaction would be since he was pretty sure he was more than just your friend. "...girlfriend, okay?"
You stopped and looked at Hiro with wide eyes, tears slowly streaming down your cheeks. "Hiro," you sobbed, but Hiro silenced you with a hug. It meant falling behind from the rest of the group, but he didn't care.
"(Y/N)," Hiro murmured, but stopped, in fear that if he said anything more he would hurt you even more.
"No, Hiro, it's okay. Really," you managed to choke out, pulling your arms tighter around him. "I just...never...thought that...I'd be...well..." Here you stopped too before taking a couple deep breaths to calm down. "I never thought I'd hear anyone say this," you finally whispered as you looked up at him, you eyes sparkling. "Yes, Hiro. I'd love to be your girlfriend."
Those very words made Hiro's heart melt as he gave you a really quick but sweet kiss on the cheek, and you smiled and blushed. "Come on," you said, regaining your senses. "They've already disappeared on us."
So the two of you quickly ran in the direction you saw the rest of the group head in, and soon you heard their voices. Quickly, you located the room they were in and headed inside, expressionless.
"Come on in, you two," Aunt Cass said soothingly, giving you both a hug.
You nodded as you took the two vacant seats left, Hiro sitting next to you, still holding your hand. You smiled back gratefully.
"Okay, so back to what we were discussing," the police said. "Mr. Tadashi Hamada, explain how you still remained alive after the fire."
Tadashi gulped. "Oh, that would be a hard one," he said, removing his helmet and running a hand through his hair. "Um, okay, so, I ran in the building, alright. Then the building exploded...but I managed to jump out of a window. Suddenly, I felt something on my ankle and saw Callaghan's face...and...oh my god, he just didn't look like the idol I've looked up to! He used the microbots to bind me up and then he carried me to the abandoned island, where I met Gisele in the same cell. We somehow managed to confide in each other since she believed she lost her older sister. And then (Y/N) showed up after a couple weeks. And then this happened."
"But Gisele, your kidnapping was a long time ago...and we all thought you died," the police faltered.
"It was a while ago, I agree," she said, nodding. "At first it wasn't so bad. They gave me some education and stuff, and for a while I didn't feel so confined. But then as I grew older, I saw more prisoners, and then the stakes were raised. After Tadashi ended up in jail for a few weeks, Callaghan disappeared. We heard he ended up in jail, but we couldn't, like, get together and celebrate because he still imposed high security. But that was short-lived when Callaghan returned, claiming he escaped from prison and would not stop at getting at us."
"But how were you a threat to Callaghan?" The police inquired.
"The answer to this, I don't know," Gisele admitted sadly. "All I remember was being hit by a driver who deliberately rammed his car into ours one night after a party, and I heard shattered glass and crunching metal...then next thing I knew, I woke up here. They probably used a hovercraft or something, I don't know."
"Or the bridge," you heard Melanie whisper in shock. She covered her mouth.
"So how long have you been on the island, specifically?" The police asked you, Tadashi, and Gisele.
"3 hours," you stated.
"10 weeks," Tadashi said.
"4 years," Gisele answered quietly.
The police took a note. "And you," he said, turning to you. "You're (Y/N), correct? The daughter of the late (Y/F/N), who owned (Y/L/N) Tech?"
"Tell me about your parents," he said. "Like, tell me exactly how they died, and how you knew it was Callaghan who did this to your family."
You hated having to repeat your story again, but repeated it you did, feeling your grip on Hiro's hand go harder. You felt yourself spiraling away from reality, but you managed to hang on. "Well...as you said, my father was the head CEO of (Y/L/N) Tech. Three weeks ago, he got heavily poisoned at a business party--a conference of some sort, I believe...and he died the very next day at home. My mom fell into a deep depression and stopped caring for me, so I took care of myself for a couple of days, making my own food and getting myself a job to raise funds for college when I go there in a few years. I worked at the Lucky Cat Cafe, and Aunt Cass took me in since she knew my mom and my circumstances. During my work period, I met Hiro, and then the next day at school I met Melanie, who just showed up as a new student. They came over to see my mom the next day, and unfortunately for my mom she felt like giving in. Gave in she did, despite everything we tried to do to help. She died two weeks after my father in an assisted suicide attempt.
"I knew it was Callaghan because he explicitly told me. Trudy, his niece, also told me before we battled it out. That was why she wanted to make my life miserable. It's hard to understand why it had to be Callaghan doing this to all of us, but one thing I know for sure is that whatever he did didn't break me entirely. I may have had so many burdens on my shoulders, but thanks to Hiro and Melanie and Aunt Cass, I managed to get most of the pain away."
"Mr. Taillot Lacitier, are you legally her guardian?" the police asked further.
"Yes I am," he nodded. "I arranged this with her lawyer."
"Can you show me the papers?" he asked.
Mr. Lacitier nodded. "I knew this would happen, so I brought photocopies." He handed the documents over to the police, who nodded.
"I will keep this on file," he decided, storing the papers in his filing cabinet. "Do you have any connections to the (Y/L/N) family at all?"
Mr. Lacitier nodded again. "Yes. I am her father's closest colleague and her mother's closest friend."
"Ahh. I see." The police nodded and then turned to Aunt Cass.
"Ms. Cass Hamada, you claim that Mr. Tadashi Hamada is your nephew?" the police asked her.
Aunt Cass nodded. "I have two nephews, Tadashi and Hiro."
"Melanie, can you claim on your parents' behalf that Gisele is truly your sister?"
Melanie nodded. "She may have changed a bit, but she's grown older. And with time we would probably bond together again and live the way we once did, as younger children."
The police nodded. "We'll call your parents in the morning and decide what to do with Gisele. In the meantime, we recommend that the both of you stay here. I will let your parents know where you are."
"So do I still have to go to school tomorrow?" Melanie asked. "Though I'll admit it, I'm a bit tired."
"You will be spending a day here, so you don't have to go if you don't feel like it. We will let the teachers know, however."
"Thank god!" she cried, turning to you and giving you a big hug, which you accepted.
The police then turned to Aunt Cass. "Would you still like to claim Tadashi Hamada back to your household?"
"YES!" Aunt Cass cried. "Of course I would! Why would I not? He's my nephew! It's about time he gives me a good explanation!" She then gave Tadashi a death glare, and he gulped.
"Um, Aunt Cass? Isn't an explanation to the police already enough?" he asked shakily.
Sighing, she nodded. "I suppose."
The police finally turned to you. "And you, (Y/N). What are you going to do? From what I heard from Aunt Cass, she is willing to give you a room if you stay with the Hamadas. But you also have the option for Mr. Lacitier to stay with you, since he is your guardian. It's up to you."
You didn't want to be obligated with any more choices, and you hated the fact that you were put in the spot again. Wiping the sweat on your palms on your skirt, you looked at both Aunt Cass and Mr. Lacitier with a look of conflict. You loved Aunt Cass to bits, with her cooking and her concern for your family, and you wouldn't mind spending a bit more time with Hiro if that was what staying with the Hamadas meant. But then Mr. Lacitier never got a chance to truly show you how good of a guardian he could be. Like Aunt Cass, he had a connection to your mother, but he also had a connection to your father. Something in you told you that he isn't as bad as you originally thought of him to be. You just have to give him a chance to show you just how caring he is.
"Mr. Lacitier, I just want to quickly apologize for my attitude earlier," you said, looking at Mr. Lacitier. "I mean, you may have a really strange look and that may put you down--I'll admit it did for me--but inside I know you have a good heart. You have good intentions, being my guardian. I trust you wholeheartedly."
Mr. Lacitier nodded. "I accept your apology, (Y/N). I'll admit I don't know how to take good care of children yet, but maybe with time I'll get the hang of it. But the decision is yours. If you want to stay with the Hamadas, I'm okay with it."
You looked at Aunt Cass again, then at Mr. Lacitier, and then you turned back to the police, making up your mind. "As much as I want to stay with the Hamadas, I know that they need a moment to get used to Tadashi back with them," you said. "I mean, they've been nice, but something tells me I should give Mr. Lacitier a chance." You took a deep breath and then stated your final verdict. "I would like Mr. Lacitier to stay."
Hiro smiled and hugged you, glad that you made this decision, and you hugged back. "That's actually a really good choice, (Y/N). I'm really happy you made it."
You hugged him back tightly. "But I don't know, Hiro. Would I still see you again?"
"Hey," Hiro smiled, letting you go. "I asked Mr. Lacitier while you were gone if I could be your boyfriend, and vice versa. And he gave me full permission. Of course I'll still be able to see you! Though now you mention it, I kind of want to do this formally." He got up from his chair, got down on one knee, and held your hand in his.
"(Y/N), would you like to be my girlfriend?" he asked you.
Your heart racing, you nodded excitedly. "Yes Hiro! Yes, I would love to be your girlfriend!"
Hiro smiled as he twirled you around in the air, then put you down and gave you a full-on kiss, full of love and passion and happiness, and you kissed him back with equal fervor, adrenaline rushing through your system.
When you finally let go, you looked at the police. "Um, sorry."
"That's alright," the police sighed dreamily. "Ah, young love."
You smiled as you let Hiro go, returning to your seat.
"Okay, so...the next step..." The police turned to you. "Here's what I want you all to do. Ms. Cass Hamada, you can take your nephews home. Melanie and Gisele, you stay here. We will pick your stuff up from the Hamadas' place and bring that over to you. Ms. (Y/L/N), you and Mr. Lacitier can remain at your house. Do you have any questions?"
No one spoke, until Hiro asked hesitantly, "Can I stay with her for just tonight?"
This took everyone by surprise, including you. But you nodded. "Why not? You're always welcome."
With that, the court was adjourned. Melanie and Gisele were offered a room in the department, and before she left she gave you a hug.
"Thanks for finding my sister," she whispered. "Hope everything goes okay with you."
You chuckled. "I'll say the same for you. Tell me how it goes tomorrow, okay?"
She nodded. "I promise."
Then she hugged Hiro. "Thanks for just being there. I really appreciate it. And I'm happy you got your brother back."
Hiro chuckled too. "I hope everything goes well with you and your family. You are always free to visit the Lucky Cat, you know."
"I'll keep that in mind," Melanie promised.
With that, they were both escorted away, and you and Hiro waved after them. Then Aunt Cass and Tadashi approached you.
"Whatever you do, don't do any rough business with my nephew," Aunt Cass warned you. Then she turned to Hiro. "And don't you mess with my employee."
Hiro laughed. "Don't worry, Aunt Cass. I've got everything covered."
Tadashi tackled Hiro with a brotherly hug and a fist bump. "I'll check on Baymax when we get back. We need some time to catch up when you get back from SFIT tomorrow."
"I'll make time for that," Hiro promised. Then his eyes widened. "Shoot. We forgot to ask about your position in SFIT."
"That's alright," Tadashi chuckled. "I'll call them up tomorrow. Or we can go together. And then I'll talk to the front desk or something."
Hiro smiled. "It's good to have you back, bro."
Tadashi smiled back, and then turned to you. "Take good care of Hiro, okay?"
You nodded. "That's a promise I'll keep."
With that, Aunt Cass and Tadashi were escorted back to the Lucky Cat Cafe by the police. Then you turned to Mr. Lacitier.
"Shall we be heading back as well?" you asked him.
Mr. Lacitier nodded. "I guess we need an escort as well, don't we."
You nodded, but then the police who interrogated you spoke up. "I can send you back. What's your address?"
You gave that to the police, and then he lead you to another police car, had you all enter it, and drove off back to your place. It didn't take long, and soon you saw your house looming into view.
"Thank you, sir," you beamed as you got out of the car.
"No problem. If there are any more problems you can call us," he said, bowing before entering the car again and driving away.
You then turned to Hiro. "Shall we?"
Hiro nodded. "Of course."
You turned the key in the lock, and the three of you entered the house.