Jackie: "Would you cover for me? I'd like to slip out early, have dinner with my kids."
Kelly: "Sure. If it makes life easier, yeah."
It's the only thing he could have said, at the only time he possibly could have said it, to make her drop the attitude with him. As much as knowing how many words it takes, also important is knowing to stay on your side of the line, say as little as possible. The respect of not caring, sometimes.
Grace, sitting at the foot of the Peytons' bed: "How long till I feel it?"
Jackie: "I don't know, baby. It's different for different people. You've never taken anything before, so it shouldn't be long. How are you feeling right now?"
Grace: "It's like I'm on the edge of having ten ideas, all at once, only... Maybe I don't have to have them. Like I could say Freeze, and walk right up to them, and see if I want to let them in or not. I don't think they're ever gonna go away, but... If I don't want to think them, I don't have to."
Jackie: "No. You don't."
Grace, smiling: "My heart is moving... A little slower."
She grins at her mother; she grins as she realizes she can't even really tell if anything's happening. Not really. She smiles, at peace. Jackie nods, knowing, and you can see the ways they're tied together. It's so bright, suddenly, after three years of darkness, the space between them. These two geniuses, ten thoughts a second, a million thoughts at once; two burning-hot saints finding a port in a storm. Just for a second. Just for now.
Grace's real burden was never her mother's faults. Not the cheating, not the drugs, not the armor that closes her up like a fan. It's been a game of misdirection, what goes on in the mind of an eleven-year-old. The only thing more terrifying than your mother's weakness is her strength.
Grace is attended by the same angels, tested just as harshly; just as close to the fire, and just as close to the moon; carrying the same sword, fighting the same dragon. Something she never knew, until she sat here at the foot of the Peyton bed, watching her daughter wait for peace. Knowing it never stays for long.