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Cafe5to2 Waitress
 Post subject: Adopting Laura
     
         
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Missing since: 03 Jul 2009
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Last seen at: Arkham Asylum
So, I've searched through all the threads dealing with Laura and the Leave ending and I can't seem to find anything about how James would adopt her after the Leave ending. It's been mentioned before, but could he even legally adopt her? Wouldn't the cops be looking for him after what he did? It's revealed in Silent Hill 4 that both James and Mary disappeared so I'm assuming that James would have had to change their names maybe? But how easy is it to do something like that when people are looking for you? I'm asking all these questions because I was writing fanfiction that takes place after the Leave ending and I suddenly realized that I'd have to explain how the hell James adopted Laura, whether legally or not.

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Historical Society Historian
 Post subject: Re: Adopting Laura
     
         
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Missing since: 01 Aug 2006
Notes left: 11371
Last seen at: I'm here, and waiting for you
He can do whatever the hell Harry did.

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I thought he meant the special powers of her vagina.


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Historical Society Historian
 Post subject: Re: Adopting Laura
     
         
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Missing since: 12 Feb 2009
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^ Yeah. Changing the names and the looks would be a start.

But as I said before, I don't think Laura would want anything to do with James after she found out that he was Mary's murderer. But... Since it's a fan-fiction so whatever...

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Historical Society Historian
 Post subject: Re: Adopting Laura
     
         
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Missing since: 01 Aug 2006
Notes left: 11371
Last seen at: I'm here, and waiting for you
Well, one can very easily make the argument that Laura had her own meeting with Mary; else why would she be leaving town? She'd already clearly had atleast suspected Mary was gone, she's not stupid.

I'm also not convinced her anger at James for killing her isn't momentary. As soon as she has her outburst, she's fairly calmed down and just asks him why. Like she knows he has a reason, but didn't understand it. And at that point in the story, she'd clearly warmed up to James that was was willing to be around him.

Laura almost definitely has it in her to forgive James, even more so if it's Ghost-Mary's last wish.

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BlackFire2 wrote:
I thought he meant the special powers of her vagina.


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Rosewater Park Attendant
 Post subject: Re: Adopting Laura

Missing since: 12 Jan 2008
Notes left: 1299
Simply, there are two possibilities for how Laura's journey through Silent Hill ended:
1. She had her own encounter with Mary, allowing her to gain closure, let go of her anger at James, and begin to move on with her life.
2. She did not encounter Mary, forcing her to work through the loss of her friend and would-be mother on her own.

Further, since all we see are James and Laura leaving through the graveyard (some distance apart), there are three interpretations of the "Leave" ending.
1. James and Laura were both leaving the town, on essentially parallel courses. James drove away in his car, Laura walked or hitched or got picked up by a passing cop car and turned over to social services.
2. James and Laura left the town together. James returned Laura to whatever institution she lived at, then left to go on with his life.
3. James and Laura left the town together; James adopted Laura (presumably informally) and raised her as his own.

If Laura did not encounter Mary, then the first two interpretations are plausible, the third is off the table. Laura would not want anything to do with her "mom's" killer unless Mary herself intervened and explained things to her.

If Laura did encounter Mary, then the second and third interpretations are the most plausible. Mary would have explained the truth to Laura, and she would at least have consented to leave town with James, even if the two chose to part ways afterward.
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EDIT...

As for why lots of people theorize that James adopted Laura after the "Leave" ending, consider:

Essentially, "Leave" is the counterbalance to the three "darker" endings: James escapes Silent Hill with his life, sanity, and soul intact. And since it is SH2's answer to the "Good" ending, since Laura is in it, and since it is known that Mary's dying wish was to adopt her... well, people will naturally make that assumption. It's easy to see why: Mary did not exist in a vacuum. When she died, James lost his beloved wife. When she died, Laura lost the mother she had longed for. But consider that in addition, the happy family that they would have formed, had life been less cruel, was removed from existence as well. What better way for the "good" ending to play itself out than for that family, on some level, to be restored? And what better way for James to atone for his actions (whether they were monstrous or merciful) than to carry out Mary's final wishes in her stead?

Even though I personally tend to see the most sense in the middle scenario (that James took Laura to safety and they parted ways afterward), I am as subject to this phenomenon as anyone. If you've ever read my "Rejected Endings" topics, nearly every game I visit has a scenario in which everything turns out all right. In one, James wakes up in Room 312 of the hotel with Mary and Laura at his side (and their best friends, Eddie and Angela, in the room next door). In another, Heather is saved from the game's final boss by a very-much-alive Harry Mason. And even the lonely Travis Grady finds love and purpose by adopting every creepy little girl the SH franchise has produced.

We may not all be suckers for happy endings, but enough of us are that when we encounter an ambiguous ending like "Leave", we try and put the best spin on it that we can. And for those of us who feel otherwise, we can either associate ourselves with another ending (the four "serious" ones are all equally canonical), or choose a different interpretation of this one.

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Moderator
 Post subject: Re: Adopting Laura
     
         
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Missing since: 15 Apr 2004
Notes left: 11052
Last seen at: In the anals of forum history
MistahJ wrote:
So, I've searched through all the threads dealing with Laura and the Leave ending and I can't seem to find anything about how James would adopt her after the Leave ending. It's been mentioned before, but could he even legally adopt her?


I doubt it would be done through legal channels.

Quote:
Wouldn't the cops be looking for him after what he did?


They might look for James and Mary as missing persons, but they wouldn't have any evidence, or even any reason to suspect, that James killed her, assumed a new identity, and vanished into the black.

Quote:
But how easy is it to do something like that when people are looking for you? I'm asking all these questions because I was writing fanfiction that takes place after the Leave ending and I suddenly realized that I'd have to explain how the hell James adopted Laura, whether legally or not.


Here's how I see it, in this particular scenario. YMMV. I assume scenario 1 in Oddish's post, as well as the things I said above.

Laura and James both take on new names. James finds people who can establish new identities for the both of them (admittedly, the most difficult part of the whole thing to pull off, but far from impossible). Their new identities establish their relationship as father and child. He has no contact with anyone who ever knew him, so as far as any of them assume, James and Mary disappeared. Perhaps some assume that it was a murder-suicide. Perhaps others assume that she died on her own and he killed himself. Perhaps others assume they both committed suicide together. Or that they ran away to Mexico in a desperate attempt to try 'miracle treatments' that responsibly-regulated American health care would never allow.

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Rosewater Park Attendant
 Post subject: Re: Adopting Laura

Missing since: 12 Jan 2008
Notes left: 1299
Reading between the lines, it seems as if Mary had very few visitors in the hospital; her primary relationship was with Laura, a fellow patient. Maybe her fits of rage drove everyone else away.

James very likely retreated into himself as Mary got sicker, took to drinking, basically fell apart at the seams. If he had friends, he probably withdrew from them.

Laura was an unwanted orphan, a resident at some institution or other. Probably one of the "sisters" least favorites. She has a history of running away, by her own admission.

A terminal patient, a recluse, and a chronic runaway... just the sort of people who could vanish into oblivion, since no one would miss them. The police would go through the motions, then put them in their "unsolved" files, and turn their attention to missing persons that people actually cared about.

James commits Mary's body to Toluca Lake, maybe pushing his whole car into it. If he's still in Misty Silent Hill, it may never turn up in the populated town where people might be searching. He and Laura hitch or take a one-way bus trip to some other part of the country. And then, as Ryan said, it's just a matter of establishing new identities. They're both blond-haired and blue-eyed, so they'll pass for father and daughter at first glance. And if they're reasonably canny, there won't be a second.

Completely plausible, even within the story that James never returned from his trip to Silent Hill.

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Historical Society Historian
 Post subject: Re: Adopting Laura
     
         
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Missing since: 26 Dec 2004
Notes left: 2560
Last seen at: Insomnia land, where I am Queen!
From what I have seen in the numerous true story movies I watch, James could look through old newspapers from the year he was born, find a baby that died, and take that name and apply for a new license, social security card, etc. Then he gives Laura a new name and there you have it.

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Rosewater Park Attendant
 Post subject: Re: Adopting Laura
     
         
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Missing since: 06 Mar 2008
Notes left: 1336
Last seen at: Colonia Claudia Ara Agrippinensium
I'd also like to point out that, despite Frank telling Henry that James and his wife disappeared in Silent Hill, it doesn't necessarily mean that they actually disappeared. It could simply just mean that Frank doesn't stay in touch with his son anymore. James could be anywhere, living a new life far away from Silent Hill. Maybe he moved to Thailand and opened a beach bar. And Dahlia could be a robot.

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Historical Society Historian
 Post subject: Re: Adopting Laura
     
         
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Missing since: 26 Dec 2004
Notes left: 2560
Last seen at: Insomnia land, where I am Queen!
To be fair, if my dad was hoarding an umbilical cord from a random baby that was abandoned in an apartment, I wouldn't go out of my way to contact him if I could avoid it. :D Maybe he adopted Laura, moved to the UK, became addicted to Doctor Who, and he has robot Dahlia cleaning his house.

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Rosewater Park Attendant
 Post subject: Re: Adopting Laura

Missing since: 12 Jan 2008
Notes left: 1299
Here's a thought, adapted from a "rejected ending" proposed by Inner Eye

Homecoming Ending.

What Happens: After James and Laura walk off, it shows James driving up to South Ashfeild to see his father. James gets down with Laura and intorduces her to his father. It then ends with James saying he is going to adopt Laura.

===========

It's conceivable that James showed up in South Ashfield with Laura, Mary's body in the trunk of his car, and a (cut-down) story of what happened. Basically, Mary was dying, he helped her along, now he and Laura have to disappear. Frank, caring father that he is, helps out. He and James drive out to some swampy area; they sink James's car in the muck and drive back in Frank's. Frank buys James and Laura a one-way bus ticket to Wyoming or North Dakota or Alaska, then promises that if anyone asks about them, he will tell them that last he heard from James and Mary, they were taking a trip to Silent Hill together. Maybe he does have contact with James, but never mentions it to anyone.

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Historical Society Historian
 Post subject: Re: Adopting Laura
     
         
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Missing since: 26 Dec 2004
Notes left: 2560
Last seen at: Insomnia land, where I am Queen!
I don't think Henry asked him though, I think Frank just mentioned it. "Nice picture. My son and daughter-in-law disappeared there. I need to go check on my umbilical cord. Good day." :D

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Historical Society Historian
 Post subject: Re: Adopting Laura
     
         
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Missing since: 01 Aug 2006
Notes left: 11371
Last seen at: I'm here, and waiting for you
PeachySakura24 wrote:
To be fair, if my dad was hoarding an umbilical cord from a random baby that was abandoned in an apartment, I wouldn't go out of my way to contact him if I could avoid it. :D Maybe he adopted Laura, moved to the UK, became addicted to Doctor Who, and he has robot Dahlia cleaning his house.


Uh, that's a thing a lot of Jewish and Christian people do. It's entirely reasonable that Frank would hold onto it instead of his parents, as the only consolation he can give the kid. It's this weird talmudic religious thing.

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BlackFire2 wrote:
I thought he meant the special powers of her vagina.


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Rosewater Park Attendant
 Post subject: Re: Adopting Laura

Missing since: 12 Jan 2008
Notes left: 1299
It's conceivable that Frank might have mentioned his "cover story" for James's disappearance even if he wasn't asked.

I'm sure you know the old saw: "A liar better have a real good memory." To ensure that he never lets the truth about his son pop out, or (more likely) tells more than one people different lies (and have them get together afterwards), Frank would want to get his story straight. Furthermore, if there was a chance that someone might wonder afterward why he hadn't mentioned it, he might do so. Whether you're lying for the right reasons or the wrong ones (and I leave it to you to decide which would be the case with Frank), you have to lie convincingly and without inconsistency. Otherwise, Frank and James wind up wearing matching orange jumpsuits, and Laura's back at the orphanage making the nuns' lives miserable.

Another possibility: I never played SH4, don't know the Frank Sunderland character, no idea how much (or little) integrity he possesses. But if you're a fundamentally honest person who finds himself forced to lie, it's commonplace to (through rationalization) start believing the lie. After all, James and Mary did make a trip to Silent Hill, and both disappeared in the process of it. So in a sense it's the truth, if not the whole truth.

Not saying James did tell Frank anything, just saying that it's conceivable that he did. ;)

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Historical Society Historian
 Post subject: Re: Adopting Laura
     
         
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Missing since: 26 Dec 2004
Notes left: 2560
Last seen at: Insomnia land, where I am Queen!
AuraTwilight wrote:
PeachySakura24 wrote:
To be fair, if my dad was hoarding an umbilical cord from a random baby that was abandoned in an apartment, I wouldn't go out of my way to contact him if I could avoid it. :D Maybe he adopted Laura, moved to the UK, became addicted to Doctor Who, and he has robot Dahlia cleaning his house.


Uh, that's a thing a lot of Jewish and Christian people do. It's entirely reasonable that Frank would hold onto it instead of his parents, as the only consolation he can give the kid. It's this weird talmudic religious thing.


People keep umbilical cords from babies not related to them for religious reasons? Why? I am genuinely interested since I have never heard of such a thing.

Oddish wrote:
I'm sure you know the old saw: "A liar better have a real good memory."

Is that why Judge Judy always says "If you tell the truth, you don't need a good memory?" My memory is awful, so I must be honest. :D
I don't think Frank knows what happened, to be honest. I think that if James left Silent Hill alive, he just decided to cut all ties and start over fresh.

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Rosewater Park Attendant
 Post subject: Re: Adopting Laura

Missing since: 12 Jan 2008
Notes left: 1299
I think as you do. I think Jamesie severed all ties. He delivered Laura to the authorities, got rid of Mary and his car, moved out of state, dyed his hair, changed his name, lived off-grid for a few years, then very carefully reentered society. It's just fun to speculate.

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Historical Society Historian
 Post subject: Re: Adopting Laura
     
         
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Missing since: 01 Aug 2006
Notes left: 11371
Last seen at: I'm here, and waiting for you
Quote:
People keep umbilical cords from babies not related to them for religious reasons? Why? I am genuinely interested since I have never heard of such a thing.


Like I said, it's usually their own child, but there's no one to do that for Walter. Frank clearly pitied the kid but had to give him to an orphanage, so he probably held onto it as a way of remembering to pray for his well-being or something.

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BlackFire2 wrote:
I thought he meant the special powers of her vagina.


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Rosewater Park Attendant
 Post subject: Re: Adopting Laura

Missing since: 12 Jan 2008
Notes left: 1299
Funny how the SH universe has orphanages all over the place, though you don't see very many of them IRL nowadays. Probably a combined result of birth control, abortion, and greater societal tolerance for single parenthood.

And Judge Judy's quote (mine as well) could be attributed either to Abraham Lincoln ("No man has a good enough memory to be a successful liar") or Mark Twain ("If you tell the truth, you don't have to remember anything."

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Historical Society Historian
 Post subject: Re: Adopting Laura
     
         
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Missing since: 26 Dec 2004
Notes left: 2560
Last seen at: Insomnia land, where I am Queen!
AuraTwilight wrote:
Quote:
People keep umbilical cords from babies not related to them for religious reasons? Why? I am genuinely interested since I have never heard of such a thing.


Like I said, it's usually their own child, but there's no one to do that for Walter. Frank clearly pitied the kid but had to give him to an orphanage, so he probably held onto it as a way of remembering to pray for his well-being or something.


Do you think he has James' umbilical cord too, or just Walter's? If we didn't find the memo about Walter and the grave in SH2, you could theorize that he kept it because his own son was gone, but it just doesn't work.

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Historical Society Historian
 Post subject: Re: Adopting Laura
     
         
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Missing since: 01 Aug 2006
Notes left: 11371
Last seen at: I'm here, and waiting for you
PeachySakura24 wrote:
AuraTwilight wrote:
Quote:
People keep umbilical cords from babies not related to them for religious reasons? Why? I am genuinely interested since I have never heard of such a thing.


Like I said, it's usually their own child, but there's no one to do that for Walter. Frank clearly pitied the kid but had to give him to an orphanage, so he probably held onto it as a way of remembering to pray for his well-being or something.


Do you think he has James' umbilical cord too, or just Walter's? If we didn't find the memo about Walter and the grave in SH2, you could theorize that he kept it because his own son was gone, but it just doesn't work.


He might? But if Mrs. Sunderland is deceased, and I think she is, it's common practice for mothers to be buried with these preserved umbilical cords as a Hebrew tradition.

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BlackFire2 wrote:
I thought he meant the special powers of her vagina.


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