• Published 26th May 2014
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Rehabilitation - moviemaster8510



After managing to survive the rise and fall of Heisenberg, Jesse Pinkman, his mind and body shattered seemingly beyond repair, winds up in a place where he may finally be able to rest...

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Chapter 1: Pilate

East.

This was the only direction Jesse Pinkman wanted to drive. It didn’t matter how far he needed to go. All he knew was that he wanted to be as far from Albuquerque and all of its evils as possible. What he planned to do, he didn’t know either. Todd had decided to leave a couple of ten-thousand dollar stacks in the glove compartment of his El Camino, probably just enough to jumpstart his life and find a way to get things back on track.

How he would do this, however…

Jesse’s mind was swimming with delirium. After months of sleeping in a concrete cellar and serving as a slave to cook Blue Sky with Todd for Jack and his gang of white supremacists, all Jesse wanted to do was rest in an actual, comfy bed. He would be plagued with nightmares, no-doubt; from countless brushes with death, the killings he himself witnessed, his small period of homelessness, his killing Gale, as well as losing Jane, Adriana, Mike, and nearly losing Brock twice, sleep seemed like a complete impossibility.

Perhaps, he needed something to eat…

Yes.

At the next 7-Eleven, he could eat some real food, drink a few beers, buy some toiletries and clean himself up at the closest motel. Lord knows he could use a shave. But not before a nice long nap. Signs along the building-laden highway pointed that Indianapolis was only a few miles away. There would definitely be something there.
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Behind the counter of the 7-Eleven, a black-skinned woman was sorting through the bills in her register, making sure that there wasn’t a dime out of place. With the few people inside still browsing the shelves, the cashier was inclined to take her time.

With the doorbell ringing, signaling the arrival of a new customer, the cashier instinctively looked to the door, but found her gaze stuck on Jesse, who stood limply at the entrance, looking at the cashier intently. His dusty, black, oversized, long-sleeved Henley shirt, his baggy black pants reeked of blood and sweat. His sandy-brown hair was messy and oily and a short beard ran along the bottom half of his face, not a sign of grooming on it.

His repugnant stench began to fill the noses of the customers and the cashier, who tried their best to mask their disgust. Jesse was too exhausted to notice, only concerned with one thing.

“Yo,” he rasped politely. “Do you know where I can find the razors?”
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Jesse emerged from the steaming motel bathroom, rubbing a towel through his smooth, hairless chin and jaw where his mangy unkempt beard had been. His greasy, disheveled hair was now smooth and combed out, matted down by the moisture that his towel couldn’t dry. Naked in the solitude of the nauseatingly yellow room, his body, head to toe, was covered in cuts, scars and bruises that he endured through Jack’s slavery.

While sleeping on a bed was one of the greatest pleasures he felt in months, he still felt far from fully rested. Stumbling towards the bed, he leaned forwards, falling on top of right on top of it. Jesse let out a relaxed sigh, appreciating the chilly feeling of the sheets as he slowly ran his arms up, keeping his hanging legs from dragging him back down.

Right now, nothing could bring him out of this moment. For all extents and purposes, he was free. And as long as he didn’t return, he would continue to be free.
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Jesse stepped out of an El Arado, his hands in the pockets of his new grey, stone-washed jeans. Jesse took one hand out to brush tortilla crumbs off of his expensive blue t-shirt, a light-grey long-sleeved t-shirt underneath. His longer hair was also trimmed and spiked-up, giving Jesse a far more acceptable image than when he entered Indianapolis.

Jesse even felt a lot better with himself and his new look. No one in this city knew who he was, and he didn’t know any of them. He had the best protection that not even Mike could provide for him back in Albuquerque; complete anonymity. As long as he didn’t cause any trouble, not that he would want to anymore, he would be just fine.

Walking east down north side of the street, he looked for another place that he could settle down for a while. Looking along the windows of the buildings, there was one that made him come to a halt, suddenly hit with a wave of nostalgia.

Written on a giant word bubble, in large, goofy, yellow letters read: The Hero House. Browsing through the windows, he looked at the numerous comics and graphic novels on display, as well as the people inside and browsing through what the store had to offer. With shimmering eyes, nothing else compelling him to continue his walk, Jesse made his way inside the store, too eager to kill some time.

Jesse walked past the shelves of collectables and candies and underneath the novelty t-shirts featuring the decals of several famous comic book heroes, and straight for the boxes of comics further in. Fanning through the first unoccupied one, Jesse fanned through the individual comics protected by plastic sleeves. It really didn’t matter what he was in the mood for. Just to spend a few hours looking through some comic books and reflect back to simpler times was all he needed at the moment.

“Can I help you find anything?” asked a male employee in a black t-shirt uniform, startling Jesse.

With his train of thought momentarily broken, Jesse searched for an answer.

“Naw,” he sighed with a dismissive wave, “I’m good. Thanks.”

Without a word, Jesse resumed his browsing, allowing the employee to assist another customer who would actually require his help.
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Jesse sat on a toilet inside a blue cubicle of the Hero House, his pants up as if he were merely sitting on a chair. A plastic bag filled with sleeves of comic books stood propped against his leg. The time he had spent inside had been very therapeutic. While it was merely a drop of ointment over the gash that had been the last two years of his life, it gave him plenty of clarity of where to go from there. Perhaps he could draw again like he used to in high-school; start his own comics.

Maybe he could find something in Indianapolis, or even continue east to New York and make it big there. The possibilities were endless. However, a grumbling stomach removed Jesse from his musing. Pulling back the sleeve of his shirt and examining his watch, he realized that it was 7:00 already.

It seemed jet-lag was even possible driving in a car.

Regardless, it was time to find something for dinner and get some more sleep at the motel. Standing up, Jesse straightened his pants and stepped out of the cubicle and towards the sinks.
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Jesse plopped back down on his bed with a large Styrofoam carry-out box in his grasp, his bag of comic books hanging on the palm of his hand. Setting the box down, he slipped the handles of his bag off and let the comics slip out and spread over the bed. Jesse was looking forward to an idle moment such as this for far too long: a fresh, greasy burger and fries and a night of reading comics.

Flipping the lid open, Jesse took out two fries and chewed them as he began pulling the sleeves off each comic. Upon grabbing the third one, revealing an X-Men cover, he pinched the bottom and yanked, hoping to get the book out in one effort, only for it to get stuck. Jesse had one hand on his fries, the other on his comics. With another forceful yank the books would not come free.

“Come on, you bitch!” growled Jesse as he shook harder and harder, only for the top inches of the book to come out. “Screw it.”

Jesse relinquished his fries, wiped his hand upon his pants, and grabbed hold of the book. As he gently slid the comic out, he felt a second book begin to slide out from behind the first. Jesse chuckled, amused by the prospect of getting a free book with the one he bought.

“Whoa,” Jesse giggled in a low, uncomfortable chuckle, “what do we have here?”

As he slid the second book out first, allowing X-Men to fall free. Upon seeing the cover of the mystery comic, his face contorted into sheer confusion.

“The fuck?” he thought aloud.

The cover of the book featured the skyline of a metropolitan city with the giant figure of what looked like a horse on the cover. The horse had a blueberry-colored coat, which was covered almost entirely by a purple latex suit with black leggings. The horse’s mane and tail were a bright green, which looked to be flaying about as if her hair were like tentacles. On the top of the cover read the title: Power Ponies.

Jesse, still unsure just what he was looking at, examined the book in detail; flipping briskly through the pages, examining the back and front covers. He still couldn’t tell what he had just gotten, but it looked like the dumbest looking comic he’d ever seen. Minus the fact that it’s colorful equine characters (and a dragon sidekick), screamed “for prepubescent girls,” the artwork itself looked unbearably cheesy, as well as the dialogue that he managed to catch through his flipping.

But hell if he couldn’t have a laugh at it.

“Well,” sighed Jesse, reaching for his burger, “I know where my evening’s starting tonight.”

Jesse flipped the comic over and turned to the first page, biting off a hefty chunk of his sandwich, ketchup and mayonnaise caking the corners of his mouth. On the opening panels, a pink colored pony with a long blue mane and tail fell off a catwalk into a vat of chemicals, promptly emerging as the horse on the cover of the book.

“Yeah,” chided Jesse through his mouthful, “totally not a ripoff of the Joker or anything.”

Jesse placed his burger down and flipped the book upside down, getting off the bed and walking to the mini-fridge beside the TV. Opening it up, he pulled out a can of beer, popped it open with one hand and sipped the head that began to seep out. Plopping back to the bed, Jesse flipped the book back over and resumed his night of enjoyment.
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Jesse was nearing the final pages, and he had a slight smile on his face. As he ate more burger and fries and finished another beer, tossing the empty can at two others scattered on the floor, his comments began getting more belligerent and hateful.

“God damn,” he slurred, wiping ketchup from his mouth with his sleeve, “if this is what gets printed today, I just might become the next… Stan Lee, or something.”

Flipping the page over, he faced the front of the back cover on the left, only having a few panels left. The final panel featured the Power Ponies, all six of them, he couldn’t even be bothered to remember their names, all gathered at the top of a building across the street from a museum.

“A th– A th– A th– A th– a that’s all, bitch!” Jesse gurgled in the best Porky Pig impression his drunken stupor could muster.

Flipping the book up, hoping to remove it from his sight, it landed right back at the front of the back cover, the rest of the book folded under it. Jesse reached for the comic once again to swat it away, only to be caught by a small line of text at the lower right-hand corner.

“Oh,” he exclaimed. “I wonder if I won a prize, or some shit.”

Pressing the page close to his face, he finally could make out the words written out.

“Take a closer look,” he recited, “to join the adventure in this book.”

Jesse looked over the words once again, almost as if trying to decode some intricate meaning from them. Finally…

“Nope!” he shouted, flicking his wrist and sending the comic towards the TV. “Not happening!”

The book hit the screen of the television, clattering to the floor and open to the last page and back cover.

“Now,” wondered Jesse, “what else was there? X-Men?”

At that moment, a tremendous light zapped out from the book, a bright, sparking orb floating just above the pages. Immediately, the noise and sight shot Jesse up from his bed, crawling closer to the bottom edge to see what was happening. Seeing the orb for himself, he nearly jumped backwards in fright.

“Whoa!” he shouted loudly. “What the fuck is going on?”

As he tried to crawl to the back of the bed, he felt an odd force pull him back to the front and towards the orb.

“What?” Jesse screamed in anguish as he struggled to get back. “No! What’s happening?! Help! Somebody!”

Jesse tried to leap up again to pull away, only for his flailing legs to spin his body slightly and bounce on the bed, causing his legs to fall off the edge and dangle inside the portal of the comic. Jesse grabbed the sheets of the bed in vain, pulling them and the remains of his dinner with him as he fell into the book, disappearing in the light.

Jesse screams were silenced as the portal closed, the comic disappearing with it. The sheets of the bed flew from the bed from Jesse’s pull, knocking fries and his nearly finished burger off, otherwise, leaving no trace of Jesse behind.
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Inside the ruins of a large castle library, wooden shelves filled every space of the massive room, minus the aisles that one could walk through. A bright ball of light appeared in one of the aisles, spreading beams of light and zapping sounds all around.

Still screaming in fear, Jesse was hurled out of the portal and into one of the shelves, knocking several books off the higher levels. One book struck Jesse in the gut as about a dozen more began to rain on top of him, forcing him to cover the back of his head for protection. Not long after the last one fell, Jesse shot back up, standing on his feet and looking around him.

“What the fuck?” Jesse wheezed. “Where the fuck…?”

Seeing the mass of shelves around him, he looked down the length of the room to see a large stone window with no glass to see, one of its pillars broken away, bringing in a cool, evening breeze as the sun began to set. Jesse, finding the place uncomfortably alien, backed up down the aisle, wobbling at the knees.

“Yo…” Jesse shuddered, feeling sick and afraid. “This isn’t cool…”

The back of his heel tripped over a book, sending him toppling over to his back. Jesse woozily got up, looking at the pile of books that had gathered where he appeared. Spinning to his knees, Jesse crawled to the pile books, shoving them off to the sides and grunting angrily as he searched for the Power Ponies comic.

“Where are you?” he shouted. “Where the fuck are you?!”

As he crawled around the aisle, searching underneath every book, violently tossing them away once he was finished with them. However, the floor revealed no trace of the book. As Jesse continued crawling around on the floor, searching in vain for the comic book, his body began to give in to depression as he collapsed to his side, weeping like a baby with his hands in his wet face.

Jesse Pinkman was far from home, farther from home that he never thought he could be. He was afraid, he was lost.

Above all, he was alone.