"Trigger": Rose Canton wakes from a restless dream that feels like a memory. Unusually, she is still wearing last night's clothes instead of her pajamas, and she feels a strange burning feeling on her back. What's worse, when she finally throws off the sheets, she r
- I don't want to wake up covered in mystery blood. I want to wake up in my unicorn pajamas!
- -- Rose Canton
Appearing in "Trigger"
- Melinda (Single appearance)
- Aunty Cate (Single appearance)
- Rose's Father (Single appearance)
- Skye (Single appearance)
- Troy (Single appearance)
Synopsis for "Trigger"
Rose Canton wakes from a restless dream that feels like a memory. Unusually, she is still wearing last night's clothes instead of her pajamas, and she feels a strange burning feeling on her back. What's worse, when she finally throws off the sheets, she realizes that she is covered in blood.
Trying to hide her scream of horror from her Aunt Cate, Rose strips out of the stained shirt and underwear, and tries to wash it off in the shower. This brings her to the upsetting realization that this is not her blood. It belongs to someone else. When the hot water from the shower sprays against her back, Rose screams again, and is startled to find a bandage taped to her lower back. Peeling it away, she is startled to find a tattoo. This is most uncharacteristic. Rose would never get a tattoo - especially a gaudy one like this: a rose, with the word "Thorn" written over it.
Trying to ignore the strangeness of her morning, Rose gets dressed for school and sits down to breakfast. Her aunt, concerned, wonders what Rose was doing out so late, assuring her that she knows it is hard to transition from an institution to a new school. Rose has no appetite for her breakfast, and leaves it for the cat to eat, riding with Cate to school.
At school, Rose is surprised to find Skye, one of the popular girls, has taken an interest in her. The girl claims that they both know Rose is not as boring as she pretends to be, calling her by the name "Thorn". Apparently, Rose was vigorously making out with Skye's ex-boyfriend Troy the night before, but of course, she has no memory of it. Skye suggests that she might have gone home with him last night, too, which might explain why Troy isn't at school today. This news is particularly disturbing to Rose, given the blood she woke up covered in. Skye gives Rose Troy's number so she can call him, and leaves her alone.
Rose's friend Melinda is confused at the company that she has apparently started keeping, but isn't too put out by the change. Rose wishes to tell her about the strange morning she had, but the last thing she wants is to be put back into the institution. Fortunately, she is spared having to explain anything by the bell, and they head to science class, where they will be dissecting frogs.
Rose seems particularly disinterested in class, despite her usual zeal. Some of the popular kids distract her by giggling over a photo she apparently posted last night of her making out with Troy. Melinda is disgusted, but Rose is unable to defend herself. A voice in her head has begun screaming "Mine!" over and over, and Rose becomes so overwhelmed that she faints.
Worriedly, Melinda walks Rose to the school nurse's office, but Rose asks to stop at her locker first. Suddenly, Melinda goes quiet, and begins apologizing for acting strangely the other day. Rose has no memory of it, but apparently, she told her friend how her father was killed - a very personal subject for her - and to top it off, she had tried to kiss her. Unfortunately, Melinda actually seems interested in giving a relationship a try with her. Rose worries that actions she doesn't remember could ruin the one friendship she has.
Troy won't answer his phone. Uncomfortably, Rose ditches school and gets a cab to his address. On the way, she receives a friend invitation on Facelook from Thorn - a girl who looks exactly like her. Thorn's Facelook timeline is a gallery of underaged drunken debauchery, hanging out with Skye, making out with Troy, and molesting Melinda.
Upon arriving at Troy's address, Rose has flashbacks to the previous night, when she allowed Troy's father to tattoo her back - and then seduced him. Suddenly, Troy's father appears in the doorway and asks what she is doing back there. He promises he will get her the names she asked for, if she gives him time. He knows that she owns him. Rose looks him over, and realizes that he has a bandage on his chest, with the word "Mine" bleeding through. Last night, she had clumsily tattooed the word on his chest, taunting him, and warning him that she would blackmail him with compromising photos of him with a minor - her - if he didn't do as she said. Rose makes to run for it, but he calls after her, wondering if she did something to Troy. He didn't come home last night.
At home, Rose feels sick, and the feeling doesn't subside when she receives a message from Thorn. Attached are several of the images she took of herself with Troy's dad. Additionally, Thorn leaves a video message for her. In the video Thorn apologizes for taking over lately, and explains that Troy's father knew their - her - father, only Rose doesn't remember it.
Hearing this, Rose's memories come flooding back. She remembers riding on her father's shoulders. Thorn explains in the video that she wants answers as to what happened to their father and why. In the meantime, Thorn will hunt these people, because Rose can't. All she asks is that Rose stay out of her way. Neither of them wants to go back to the institution.
Rose is interrupted by a visitor. It is Troy, apologizing for ditching her before she got to his place. Quietly, Rose sends a final message to Thorn, before closing her laptop to hide the photos of Troy's dad. She returns her attention to Troy after telling Thorn that she'll cooperate with her plan.
- This book was first published on September 26, 2012.
- The National Comics one-shots published in 2012 were "pilots" for possible ongoing series, and were written without much concern where they fit into continuity. If this comic had been successful and lead to a Rose & Thorn series, then a decision would have been made whether it happened in the main continuity (Prime Earth) or somewhere else in the multiverse. For the time being, we have indexed this story as happening on Prime Earth, but that may change in the future if this version of The Rose and the Thorn appears again and matters are clarified.
- No trivia.
Links and References
- No external links.