chichuri_fic: Mask (Default)
chichuri_fic ([personal profile] chichuri_fic) wrote2010-12-17 02:14 am

Ficlet: Fractures in Triplicate (Nick, Olivia, Peter)

Title: Fractures in Triplicate
Fandom: Fringe
Author: [personal profile] chichuri
Characters: Nick, Olivia, Peter
Word Count: 686
Rating: PG
Summary: Peter leaving broke all three of them. AU.
Warnings: Angst.
Spoilers: None.
Disclaimer: I don't own Fringe or its characters.
Author's Note: This is set in the Choke Chain 'verse, an AU where Peter, Olivia and Nick all work for the ZFT. This is a prequel to both Slip Off the Choke Chain and Chain You Down.  

Fractures in Triplicate

Olive is irritable and restless again, not sleeping for hours then drifting into nightmares when she finally succumbs. Just another sign things aren't right anymore. Nick doesn't know how she's doing, really, because she refuses to let him in all the way, but she's broken in ways he doesn't know how to fix. All he can do is watch and wish there was more he could do.

He misses Peter. When Peter was here, she never locked herself away. The car accident wrapped her up tighter within herself, but it started with losing Peter. There's a loneliness where he should be, worse because Olive won't even acknowledge he's missing.

Won't acknowledge that Nick lost Peter, too.

Back when he went to school, back Before, the other kids never understood him, never wanted to. Nick didn't care; he had Olive, only a thought away, and Peter, a whisper of a reach further out. Now all he has is Olive, and he doesn't know how to be everything she needs.

He sighs and settles deeper into the blankets, forcing himself to relax, to let sleep claim him. He forces himself to sleep because synching with his sleeping mind calms Olive and sharing in her uneasy dreams helps convince her he's still there. Always.

Because that's the only comfort she'll let him give her.


Olivia lies awake, staring at the ceiling. She knows it's grey, just like the room, but all she can see is shadows upon shadows, even this close to morning. They've been here three days and she doesn't like this place today any more than the last two days.

Doesn't matter. Nick is here, so one place is as good as another. She reaches through their connection to feel him sleep. Listens to the even breathing across the room. Stops herself from reaching for the other presence, the one that's been gone for over a year. She knows the hollow emptiness at the other end of that connection too well.

During the day she can forget, can lose herself in the weight of a weapon in her hands, in the exhaustion of muscles aching from hard hours of training, in the intricacies of the knowledge their teachers drill into them as quickly as she and Nick can soak it up. But at night the emptiness echoes, resonates with her guilt, and she can't escape memories of who she's lost. She never could feel her parents or Rachel, not the way she felt Nick and Peter, but she knew they were there. Now they're gone.

Like Peter.

But Nick's here. She has Nick. The only one left. She can't lose him, too.

No matter what.


Some nights, Peter has dreams. Mostly impressions, images. A little blonde girl with sometimes too serious hazel eyes. A watchful blond boy who shadows her. Sparring matches that usually end with Peter on the floor and the girl on top, grinning. A pistol grip in his hands, kickback that hurts his wrists. Workouts of both mind and body, grueling but satisfying.

And sometimes he dreams of fire, hungry and terrifying.

He doesn't tell Walter. He used to, once, but Peter always ended up with extra sessions of injections or shocks or whatever the hell Walter was on to that day. Sessions that always left him with the emptiness that claws at him gaping even wider.

Instead, when he wakes from uneasy dreams he bikes to the beach, sits on the sand and watches the waves crashing. A continent away from the ocean he grew up next to, but although the sun rises and sets in the wrong places, the sand feels the same, the waves look the same, the scent of the air and crash of the waves and cries of the seagulls overhead are all the same. If there are any differences, they're locked in hidden places of his mind.

He buries his hands and feet in the sand to feel the itchy prickle of grit between his fingers and toes, lets the cold shock of the waves swirl up around him.

And wonders why he feels so lost.

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