One of my characters was born to a teenage mother, who immediately abandoned him afterwards. (Note: this is a very-slightly futuristic world, set in southern California--about sixteen years from now, so very few major details are different from the world as it is now.) He was found and rescued quite quickly, and becomes Social Services' problem from there on in. He's got some serious behavior problems, and as soon as he's old enough he intentionally makes himself so spectacularly high-maintenance that most foster homes (if they pick him up in the first place) give up on him. So my question is, what would Social Services do with him then? My best guess is an orphanage of some sort--but I don't know anything about those, either.
This is something I've always wondered, and while I don't exactly need the information for anything specific just now I often write in violent settings where I might need to know someday. When someone gets shot or stabbed or is otherwise perforated, and the hole goes all the way through them--how exactly does that heal up again? I know it's not like getting one's ear pierced, where the hole just STAYS there, but I've never really known why. Does the flesh just knit together on its own?
This is a fairly simple question. I have a character who was hit rather severely in the head some time ago, which is linked to total (permanent) hearing loss in his one ear and partial hearing loss in the other. He's been told there's really nothing anyone can do about it. I'm pretty sure this makes sense, but just in case, I want to ask if it's a logical explanation.
Finally, I have a character who's a pyromaniac. After years of writing him, I already know not to just have him going "WHEE FIRE", so I have the psychological bits...well, if not accurate, then believable enough. He works for a criminal organization (think Mafia, only less Sicilian) as an arsonist; naturally, this works out quite well for him. I don't have any specific questions on this one, but any general information about arson and the methods this character might use would be helpful. ^^
I can't believe how well this community is running! Already I'm scrambling with the memories... (On that note, I'll be adding two more memory categories--Medical Questions and Grab Bag.)
EDIT: For clarification on the perforation bit--yes, I am aware that earring holes and whatnot DO heal. But what I meant was that earring holes heal up enough so that they don't bleed anymore, and they don't hurt, but the hole is still there. I'm not aware of that happening if, say, someone stabs you through the hand with a knife--you don't just have a hole in your hand that heals over around the edges and that you can stick straws through, and I want to know why that is.