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American Made

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It was only a couple months before his accident.

Mother’s Day.

His class was making paper flowers and using some sort of clear glue to stick tissue paper to milk bottles for vases.

Matt hated it. He was the only kid in his class who didn’t have a mom at home. Some of the kids only had their moms. He was the only one with just a dad. A dad who didn’t really appreciate paper flowers and sticky milk bottles.

“Matthew, dear,” his teacher, Miss Jessica, said softly while crouching beside him. “Why aren’t you making flowers with everyone else?”

All the other kids were gathered around large tables at the back of the classroom while he was just sitting at his desk.

“My dad doesn’t like flowers.”

Miss Jessica pauses then smiles.

“How about you draw a picture for your father, then? One that he’ll like better than flowers.”

Matt nods and starts pulling out construction paper and crayons . He’ll do it to make his teacher happy, to make her leave him alone, but he knows anything he gets his father around this time just makes him sad. Every mother’s day Matt can remember ends with his father passed out on the recliner, empty bottles on the floor.

He draws a boxing ring. Puts his father in the middle, arms above his head and a referee holding on to one of them. A picture of his father winning.

At the bottom he painstakingly writes out, “I love you” and his name.

His father cries when he receives it the following Sunday.


Matt hears a knock on the door and pauses – listens to who could be out in the hallway.

“Ignore it,” purrs the girl from Family Law 101 and tries to pull Matt back in for another kiss.

Matt detects that it’s Foggy whose out in the hall, which makes sense since it is their dorm room.

“It’s probably Foggy,” The girl tries again when Matt still isn’t moving. “You put a note on the door – that’s what notes are for.”

Matt agrees and goes back to the girl – Mary, Melissa, Mandy – pushing her into his bed and grins into her giggle.

“Matt,” calls Foggy from outside the door. “I can’t read your stupid note.”

The girl groans and flops her arms out in frustration.

“Just-just, give me a moment,” Matt breathes and is off the bed and to the door in record time. He cracks it open.

“Hey, Foggy, I’m a bit busy-“

“What does this even say?” Foggy is staring down at the post-it note in his hand. “Glove died – don’t remind?”

“Girl inside – don’t come in,” Matt grinds out and Foggy nods in understanding then-

“Oh! Oh! Sorry dude!” Foggy grins and starts backing up. “Gotcha, I will be in the library. Away from here. Good luck!”

Matt closes the door and turns back to the girl and smiles.

“Where were we?”


Foggy is literally pulling his hair out.

“What does this say, Karen?”

Karen leans over to read the writing on a yellow post-it note.

“Uh… Something about a chicken? Is this a grocery list?”

Foggy groans and slams the note onto the table in the office conference room.

“No, it’s Matt’s notes from the precinct. Which I can’t read.”

Karen frowns.

“Why was Matt taking notes at the precinct? Why weren’t you with him?”

Foggy cradles his head on his arms and sighs.

“Because I was meeting with another possible client and you had that doctor’s appointment. He said he could manage.”

The two are silent for a few minutes.

“Goddamn it, Murdock,” Foggy mutters.

“Language, Foggy,” Matt says as he wanders in.

“Matt!” Foggy yells as he sits up straight and starts brandishing the note at Matt. “What in the world does this thing say?”

Matt grabs it and starts running his fingers over it. A small blush appears on his cheeks.

“Sorry, Foggy. I was writing down some things I needed at the grocery store while waiting for Mr. Hardy – I must have passed you the wrong note.”

Karen Aha’s at Foggy while Matt starts rummaging around for the correct piece of paper. Upon finding it – this time bright pink – he hands it over.

Foggy stares at the paper. And stares. And blinks.

“What the hell does this say?” Foggy exclaims and Matt gives a sheepish smile. “No more notes, Matt. All your letters overlap and it makes no sense. It looks like-“

“Like a child wrote it?” Matt finishes quietly.

Foggy stops and sighs.

“Yeah, like a child. Sorry, buddy.”

Matt shrugs and finally sits opposite Foggy and Karen. The atmosphere is a bit sad but then Foggy starts making baseball jokes and Matt jumps in and Karen’s just confused.


Matt scrawls something down on a napkin and passes it to the dark haired girl, Lisa, sitting next to him at the bar.

Between sips of her drink Lisa looks at the napkin and laughs. Matt frowns.

“Is something funny?”

Lisa shakes her head and starts pulling out her phone.

“Here’s a piece of advice - Next time you want to give someone your phone number, don’t write it down.”

She starts clicking away on her phone and Matt’s about to head back to the table where Foggy is sitting, assuming he’s now being ignored, when Lisa pauses.

“Okay, what’s your number?”

Matt tells her and hears her tap it into her contacts.

“There we go. Now,” she places a hand on his bicep. “Care to buy me another drink?”


A note is passed to Matt in court.

Matt frowns. Who passes notes during a court case? Especially during the prosecutions direct examination? They should be focusing on more important things – like their examination.

We know you’re not blind.

Matt snorts softly and passes the paper over to Foggy. He can feel Foggy tense up beside him. Matt places a hand on Foggy’s wrist and feels him ease up.

Another note is passed and Matt resists the urge to roll his eyes. The prosecution is ridiculous.

Don’t put on a show for us, pretty boy.

Matt is a bit insulted that’s the best they can do.

“Your honor,” Matt begins as he stands. “I’d like to call a meeting in your chambers.”

There’s silence and he can hear the steady heartbeat of the judge and the erratic heartbeats of the lawyers across from him.

“Granted. We will have a small recess while we meet in my chambers.”

Matt grins and grabs his cane.

Ten minutes later, once Foggy has calmed down after being threatened to be thrown out, they’re back in court.

Matt scribbles something on a piece of paper, which gets passed to the prosecutors. He can tell, by their murmurs, that they’re confused and irritated.

Afterwards, Foggy asks him what he sent to them.

“Oh, you know. I drew the 3 blind mice. Or, at least I think I did.”

Foggy laughs and Matt grins as they head down the steps outside the courthouse.


Matt is sitting in the waiting room. Of a hospital. He wants to run screaming.

Foggy drops a hand onto Matt’s shoulder as if he can read thoughts.

“It’s going to be okay, Matt. It’s just a routine surgery.”

Matt hates those words. Routine Surgery. There isn’t anything routine about having his body cut open for people to poke and prod at and to remove organs from.

“Matthew Murdock,” calls one of the nurses. Matt stands up but before he’s taken a step the nurse is in front of him.

“I need you to fill these out,” The nurse hands over a clipboard with several pages on it. “Once you’re done, please return them to the desk.”

She’s gone before anything else can be said. Matt sits and gives an empty stare to the clipboard in his hands.

He hears Foggy sigh and shift and then the clipboard is gone.

“I’ll fill these out,” Foggy states before starting at the top.

Matt slinks down in his chair, grateful for Foggy being there for him despite everything that’s happened.

“You’re allergic to penicillin, right?”

Matt nods and hears the scribble of pen to paper. Foggy continues with the forms, standard medical and insurance questionnaires, asking a question here or there but silent for most of the time. Foggy points to where Matt needs to sign on all the pages before he brings them up to the desk on Matt’s behalf.

“The nurse said maybe another 10 to 15 minutes before they bring you in to get changed.”

Matt nods absentmindedly. After everything he’s done, after all those fights, gallstones are what finally get him into the hospital.

“Cheer up, Matty,” Foggy tries. “It’ll be fine and then you’ll get the good drugs – which I cannot wait to see you on, by the way.”

Matt gives a small laugh and counts his blessings that Foggy’s still around to cheer him up and fill out forms for him time and time again.