Part 30

Jul. 4th, 2006 02:30 pm
[identity profile] posting in [community profile] if_i_trace
It's never as simple as it appears.


Steve's hand trembled as he lowered his gun. He flicked the safety back on out of habit, staring down the slope of the hill at the two still forms below.

He should be calling it in. He should be checking the guy's vitals, checking on Val -- GOD, Val... -- but he was struck immobile by the weight of what he'd done.

He'd fucked up. Badly. The SIU was gonna be all over his ass for this one, not that he could bring himself to care. That wasn't the problem. Suspension, with or without pay, he could deal with. But....

If Val was...

That guy was....

He shook his head. Holstered his gun. Reached for his radio, desperate for the familiar comfort of the dispatcher's voice or -- damnit, Shaun, why weren't you here? why didn't you follow us? -- something, anything to break the godawful silence of the scene.

He was a cop, fer chrissakes. He had to get his shit together. It wasn't like it was the first time he'd fired a gun, after all. But a shooting range was one thing....

Taking a deep breath, he radioed in as he headed down the hill.


The silence in his head was deafening.

He forced his eyes open slowly. Stars spun through the night sky overhead. It made him dizzy, as if the Earth was spinning without him. Digging his fingers into the grass and dirt, he held tight to the ground, waiting for the feeling to pass.

He could smell blood. Bright and coppery and overwhelming everything.

It wasn't his, he knew. He hurt, but it wasn't that kind of pain. He hadn't bled then, had he? Did he even bleed? If he did, would it be blood, or something....

The stars swung around suddenly and he felt pavement instead of grass beneath him.

But no... the grass was still twined between his fingers and the stars weren't moving. Hadn't moved.

There had been a gunshot... that hadn't happened last time....

Thinking made his head hurt and his heart ache. His soul screamed betrayal somewhere deep down, but he didn't want to hear it, didn't want to listen. He just did not want to think.

Cautiously, he let go of the ground with one hand and raised it to rub at his nose. He should move. Get away from the blood. But his sense of balance felt completely wrong.


He blinked and winced and stared up at the shadowed figure blankly. Wetting his lips, he searched for language. "Steve?" he managed finally.

"Are you... all right?" Steve asked, crouching down beside him.

"I'm..." hurtlostbetrayed "...okay."

"What happened?"

Val glanced away quickly, forcing his body to move so he could sit up. The world swung a slow whirl around him, but he focused on breathing, ignoring the dizziness. "They wanted me to kill him," he said shortly.

Pushing himself to his feet, he overbalanced and had to lean against Steve for a moment.

"Why?" Steve asked quietly.

Lights and sirens split the night and Val turned away, cringing. "I don't know. I can't... I can't think about it right now."

"Okay," Steve said. Looping an arm around Val's shoulders, he led him up the hill to the relative calm of his car as chaos descended on them.



Date: 2006-07-06 01:24 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Catspaw then, hmm? And Steve took his place. I like the way Steve has sacrificed a genuine innocence to protect one that was more than half illusion. It echoes Gaiden poignantly, but in the modern world, I really do fear what is going to happen to Steve, not to mention Val and the others once the news reaches them.

I fail at names

Date: 2006-07-20 02:32 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
...I'm going to cry, aren't I? *steals self for the next chapter whenever it emerges* You're an evil evil man, you. But I love this fic so yes, I'll find myself some kevlar and enjoy it through the pain. *laughs*is a fic masochist... if that's even a term. ^^;*

Date: 2006-07-09 09:09 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Very nice follow up to the previous chapter. Its clear that Steve shot Tamsin to protect Val, but was it because he feared what Tamsin could do or what Val would do?

Date: 2006-07-28 02:14 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] dead?

I really don't want to believe that right now for some reason. I've actually become a little attatched to that character despite his flaws. He's so interesting and so hard to read. Gah I still feel a bit of Tenpou in him despite him being Nii's reincarnation, but then again, Tenpou and Nii to have some similarities don't they?

Gah! Valin! Steve! Eek! *various sound-effects of shock* *face-plant*

I suppose that the flash-disks and hard-drives are now beyond this world and in computer heaven? Or can their data still be retrieved?

Steve isn't gonna get in a lot of trouble is he? And Keiran's gonna feel something about this event, being twins and all. Oh crap.

Date: 2006-10-21 12:54 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
'betrayed' - and I don't know that I can even make a preference of interpretation whether he's betrayed at what he was to do to Tamsin, what Steve did to Tamsin, what Tamsin did to him...


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