Post #1

Apr. 16th, 2011 07:02 pm
fringekink_mod: Olivia, in bed and naked under the sheets (what? Totally!), eyes closed, smiling blissfully, hair fanned out on pillow (Default)
[personal profile] fringekink_mod posting in [community profile] fringe_kinkmeme
This is a kinkmeme. You may just be familiar with the concept.

If not: explicit, adult content; read at your own risk, and keep the kids -- wherever that arbitrary line is in your jurisdiction -- out. Also, please wear your seatbelt.

RULES

1. When prompting, use the comment field to jot down character, pairing, or moresome first, then the kink(s), then any other prompt elements; after a line break, you can elaborate via words, images, or links. Like so?



2. When responding, use the subject line for the original prompt (plus your title, if you have one).

3. All kinks are welcome -- sexual, emotional, conceptual, likewise all gen, het, slash, bitextual and other fic from crack to drama.

4. Anon is encouraged but up to you.

5. Mark all spoilers, mmkay?

6. Go for it!

REMINDERS

7. With a view to some prompts: Spell Check is your BFF. Don't make Alt!Astrid cry, please?

8. A kinkmeme's more than a promptmeme. Here's [personal profile] eliade's non-definitive and non-exhaustive (but pretty illustrative) List of Fan-fiction Kinks, Tropes, Clichés, and Fetishes.

9. Could you -- in the subject line or the first line of the body of text -- draw attention to the fact there's rape or non-con, major character death, underage, and/or graphic violence in your response (which is the Archive Of Our Own (AO3) policy).

Date: 2011-04-16 09:45 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Olivia/Olivia, pairing is kink enough?

Everything's fallen apart and all they have left is each other.

Ring of Posies - Olivia/Olivia - shades of peter

Date: 2011-06-13 09:00 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
He awakes at 2:15, the smell of sex and cheap cigarettes rank on his skin. Her body’s stretched out beside him, silk hair obscuring her features; the slope of her spine painted delicate blue with streetlight.

A sixth sense drives him to pull jeans on, stuffing his feet into boots and tying the laces haphazardly. He’s pulling the Henley over his shoulders when the light under the door flickers - shadows interrupting the narrow beam from the hallway – and it’s the only warning Peter needs. One hand on his hoodie the other on his weapon, he takes the fire-escape, both legs swinging over the rusty banister to drop ten feet to the ground. The impact jars his knees together, teeth clacking. From above, a door’s kicked in. “FBI! Freeze!”

Peter doesn’t know about the first. But freezing only implies you’re standing still when the bus hits. He hears Jess scream, startled, half awake. Peter takes a second to memorise them – two women, one blond the other red, similar size, similar shape, standing blurred in front of the bedroom window – then melts into the shadows.

***


It starts like this:

After three months of the Walter’s tearing their hair out and being talked from the brink of ‘self’ suicide they drum out a solution. It’s highly theoretical; it makes Olivia wonder why she never paid attention in science class, makes her curious if her double can actually parse this shit or if Dunham perfected a look of knowing out of self-preservation.

Olivia isn’t a scientist, she’s a soldier, and three months of twiddling her thumbs waiting for someone to find a solution has left her ratty, snide with boredom. To implement the solution they need to separate the worlds again, dismantle the bridge; and while Olivia’s double is a wunderkind - able to manipulate force-fields and catch objects with her mind - the Machine is not and never has been tailored to her particular brand of magic.

It leaves everyone in the bridge-room decidedly irritable.

“Picard!” Walter snaps his fingers, seemingly unaware of how Broyle’s jaw tightens at the moniker. “It’s a repeating DNA sequence, seen here, here, and here. The Machine is designed for a specific individual, it’s a map of the genome if you will.”

“That doesn’t tell us who the individual is,” Broyles says succinctly.

Astrid raises an eyebrow. “Did this individual create the bridge to begin with?”

Walternate’s supposition said the bridge formed when both realities finished assembling the Machine – that it was automated - a theory not as valid as they first assumed. “Good question with no answer, my dear, let’s move on shall we?” Walter rubs his hands together. “Do you suppose we could grow the specimen out of a vat, we have the DNA sequence if not the genetic sample?”

“No,” Dunham says flatly.

“But…” Dunham turns her head to stare at him, buttoned down pea-coat and golden wisps escaping the braid down her back.

Walter vibrates.

Olivia doesn’t think Walter’s afraid of Dunham but there’s a give and take to their relationship she finds hard to define. Olivia’s seen Walter’s arm; the flesh corrugated rough like melted plastic, withered from wrist to forearm. Olivia’s world has the technology to remove the scarring, but the Secretary’s failed to offer it to his double, and Olivia doesn’t think Walter would accept. He wears long sleeves for the most part; writes with his left hand, Olivia’s seen Dunham trail her fingers down his forearm, a soft caress over third degree burns. Walter’s not afraid of Dunham but there are certain boundaries he knows not to test; apparently growing a test-tube baby out of a vat is one of them.

“He’s got to exist *somewhere*,” Walter says.

The Secretary glances over, eyes hooded. “What do you propose to do? Set your infernal contraption up yet again, and tear apart more realities?”

“No,” Walter counters, his hand reaching for Dunham blindly. “Olivia can slip between realities without adverse effects, it’s how the cortexiphan gifted her.”

It’s been three months and Olivia’s not immune to the comparison syndrome.

Olivia comes from a team she loves, a mother she adores, she can hit a moving target from 1500 meters and she’s a qualified sharpshooter. None of these abilities ought to be sniffed at. None of them compare to a woman who can literally reach into her world from another dimension. Everyone on the bridge-team has done the inevitable self-comparison; eyed their double and thought what if? Olivia feels like her skin’s been rubbed raw; it makes her louder, cocky, more impatient. In opposition, Dunham’s locked down tighter than an oil drum. On the few occasions Olivia’s seen her angry or frustrated, the woman’s eyes flare amber green, bright as a forest fire. Walter might not be afraid of her but Olivia *is* and it makes her want to front up. She thinks Walter’s assistant summed it best, quiet, unassuming Astrid.

“It’s like the worst case of anorexia known to mankind, we’re all staring in the mirror and hating ourselves.”

*Dunham* is the one with the super-powers. The one with Walter Bishop’s unwavering belief, she’s the one with the stable world and the sister and niece to match. Olivia has better looking cargo pants and a cheerier disposition; she’s still weighing the pros and cons of this particular argument. Dunham’s eyes fix on the wall and Olivia wonders idly if she got the better deal after all.

***

“It’s like a rolodex of images,” Dunham tries to explain.

Intrigued, Walter asks, “The same image?”

“No.”

“And only when you approach the Machine?”

“From the first step onwards.”

“Always the same man?”

“Yes.”

Walter taps his pen against a pad, a rat-a-tat-tat as he keeps beat with the music. “You’ve never seen him before?”

“No,” Dunham replies evenly.

Olivia watches them, her arms folded. Walter’s desk is buried under snow-globes, the Doors playing so loudly Olivia can feel the bass in her chest. The older man slaps his hands against his knees, eyes bright as a child as he leans forward.

“Alright then. Imagine one of these worlds, Olivia, self-contained in its glass bubble. Now concentrate dear. Imagine what it is you wish to see, try to feel its location…” Dunham’s face washes blank, pale as a statue, kinetic energy replaced by something older, fundamentally still.

Olivia finds herself staring, and wants…

She wants to bring some animation back into those features; she wishes there was someone other than a madman for Dunham to confide in, to watch her back. She wants these things for her double because they’re things Olivia wants for herself and Dunham’s her, the mirror darkly. Olivia steps near, the decision simple, and hooks her finger into Dunham’s coat…

They materialise on a grassy knoll with the sky burnt sierra orange. Dunham stumbles, swinging around sharp and furious.

Olivia jumps back, voice terse, louder than she wants. “You don’t do this alone. It’s what team’s for, you understand?” Her hand rests against her hip, close to her weapon, a form of habit, and Olivia’s already scanning the new environment. “Besides, if you get to jump across universes so do I. Fair’s fair.” It’s competitive, childish, it doesn’t even scratch the surface of what Olivia’s trying to say.

Dunham looks away. “Trust me, being the sole focus of Walter Bishop’s regard isn’t a good thing.”

“And you envisioned a graveyard as the perfect getaway?”

Dunham turns a slow circuit. The place is dishevelled, over-run by weeds. The gravestones run in a jagged line like teeth; it’s eerily quiet, devoid of noise, unattended for years. Olivia leaves Dunham to rummage through the tombstones, hands brushing against masonry, crumbled stone, and walks to the nearest bluff, staring down at a quiet town nestled between mountain hilltops, the leaves turning red and gold and autumn brown.

“Here,” Dunham calls presently, her tone cautious. “Did the Secretary have a nephew or a son?”

Olivia turns away. “No. He’s a state official, the public bio’s pretty extensive and there was no mention of either.” She squats down beside the other woman, touches her fingertip against stone. “Peter Bishop. 1978-1985.”

There’s no further inscription, no sentiment or expulsion of grief. The words look bereft, terribly alone.

“I don’t think we’ll find anything here,” Dunham says quietly.

Olivia glances at her, the other woman’s face gilded by dying light, and wants to place her hand on her cheek, map the unwritten sorrows.

They rematerialise in the bridge-room. Olivia takes a breath, expands her lungs and chest then does it again. It occurs to her belatedly if Dunham actually hated her it was the perfect opportunity, to leave her behind, to abandon her, a less messy form of murder.

Dunham works her neck from side to side; she picks up the snow-globe she was previously studying and drops it in the bin.

***

He’s nearly at the end of the alleyway when the high whine of a bullet catches his forearm. He drops to his knees then scrambles upright, hurtling over the road and down a ditch. He uses his hands to claw up the other side, feet skidding in soft dirt and hears one of the woman yell out.

“No! Don’t!”

The second bullet kicks the dirt into his face and if Peter wasn’t impressed before he’s fucking alarmed now. That’s not a rifle the redhead’s wielding and they’re not exactly close.

He drops to his belly and rolls into the foliage. Know thy exits, Peter takes a second to orient himself and checks the clip in his gun. There’s blood leaking down his forearm, tacky and hot, but the pain won’t register until his body dumps the adrenalin surge. The blonde’s closest to him. Last Peter saw she was sprinting down the alleyway ahead of her partner. He slips through the trees, circling toward the waterways, trying to figure out just who the hell he’s pissed off now and what they want. Two against one, the available evidence suggesting the redhead’s a sharp-shooter – he hopes that makes the blonde the easier m
From: (Anonymous)
This is fantastic, tense and sharp and full of promise!
From: (Anonymous)
Wow! This really fantastic.
From: (Anonymous)
I'm really enjoying it! :)
From: (Anonymous)
Oh this is so good. Love the Trek references and the POV you picked to tell the story.
From: (Anonymous)
He drops to his belly and rolls into the foliage. Know thy exits. Peter takes a second to orient himself and checks the clip in his gun. There’s blood leaking down his forearm, tacky and hot, but the pain won’t register until his body dumps the adrenalin surge. The blonde’s closest to him. Last Peter saw, she was sprinting down the alleyway ahead of her partner. He slips through the trees, circling toward the waterways, trying to figure out who he’s pissed off and what they want. Two against one, the available evidence suggests the redhead’s a sharpshooter, Peter hopes the blonde’s the easy target.

***

“Peter?” Walter says, pole axed. He’s holding an Erlenmeyer flask in one hand, a toad in the other, eyes darting between Olivia and Dunham. “It was a name my wife and I considered…but the child was lost before we…I mean…Elizabeth couldn’t conceive after that.” Walter swallows convulsively. “May I ask how old?”

“Seven,” Olivia says, not unkindly. “The surname might have been a coincidence.”

Walter sits down abruptly, legs giving out. “Oh.” The toad squirms in his hand, protesting the tightening grip.

Dunham places a hand on his shoulder, her voice a steady murmur. “Walter, which snow-globe would you like to choose next?”

And so it goes.

They land in a world with cars in the sky, billboards flashing green, a supplanted forest. They materialise briefly in a desolate wasteland, nuclear winter burying the skeletal remains of a city under a cloak of white snow (Don’t leave me, Olivia reminds, only half joking). They find Peter Bischoff, 1978-1981, and Peter Bishop 1978-1990. For a thousand realities with multiple possibilities, ‘Peter’ doesn’t exist in many, when he does he doesn’t survive past childhood.

“Fate really had it out for this kid,” Olivia says disgustedly, kicking at the mound of another grave.

If Peter can control the Machine then Olivia figures Nature’s first defence is a good killing spree - taking the wild card from a stacked deck.

The ‘journeys’ are staged a fortnight apart, allowing time for Dunham to recover - to find whatever mojo she needs to drag Olivia and herself through alternate states - most of these attempted journeys are a complete bust. Dunham will pick up a snow-globe, cupping New York in her hand, and nothing will happen. *Imagine what you want to see, Olivia, imagine where it is.* Minutes will tick by until the other woman snaps with budding frustration. “He never existed there,” and toss the snow-globe from the diminishing pile.

“Maybe you ought to bring his remains back?” the Secretary says briskly. “The next time you find Peter’s grave, that is?”

Walter holds the lab-coat across his ribs, hugging himself tight. He looks up sharply at the Secretary’s words then turns away, but not before Olivia sees his face wash pale, white as milk. He looks ill, unguarded, with none of the glee he used when talking about vat babies. Dunham doesn’t answer the Secretary; her head knocking gently against the wall, breathing through her nose.

Olivia spends the downtime working Fringe cases in her own universe. She has sex with Charlie, the two of them waking up sweaty under the covers, sharing a rueful kiss and a Panadol before separating, neither speaking of it again. She teases Lincoln, unable to help herself; but mostly, Olivia waits for Dunham’s call and wonders when she made the decision. She goes along with the trips because people always need backup, Olivia goes along because somewhere along the line, she realised Dunham’s vital to their success.

The next snow-globe brings them to a world hazy with summer heat – concentrate on his location, Walter whispers – and Peter’s location’s six feet under. It’s the same bluff Olivia saw on her first journey, and like the first journey, she watches Dunham squat beside the grave, brushing the dirt away in a ritual Olivia can’t fathom.

Impatient, she turns away. Olivia’s starting to consider the Secretary’s advice, to bring the remains ‘home’ for a DNA sampling, provided Peter wasn’t cremated. “We need a shovel,” Olivia says sharply.

Dunham tightens her shoulders; head inclining toward Olivia’s position. “No.”

“Oh for Christ’s sake…Olivia, you don’t know this kid. You saw his face in a mental film roll! We don’t even know for sure if the boy and the man are the same. We’re going on gut instinct and frankly your gut’s killing people in my reality. Every minute we delay, Olivia, every second will have consequences. Please.” Stop wallowing in imagined wrongs Olivia wants to scream. “Everywhere we’ve been the boy’s no longer alive, or he never existed to begin with – this might be our only option - help me dig him up.” Dunham faces her, Olivia was incorrect when she thought there was no animation in her features, there’s a whole storyboard of emotion, subtle riffs on anger and isolation.

“He existed in our world at one time. I know it…I just can’t feel it. He exists somewhere out there too.” Her double closes her eyes, tongue wetting her lips, voice steady. “I’ve always been good with other people, knowing what motivates them, what drives them to do the things they do…maybe less so about myself.” Blind to Olivia’s scrutiny, Dunham’s tilts toward her; a complementing mosaic of soft and hard edges. “I don’t want to give up on him.”

Olivia’s voice turns husky. “Why?” If Peter existed in either of their time-lines he doesn’t now. Dunham can’t feel him because there is no connection to be felt; it’s what non-existence means. Voided blank. Dunham opens her eyes, her stare direct, piercing through Olivia’s thoughts.

“People always die in movies and in books, sometimes heroically, sometimes not. If you’re exceptionally lucky, someone might erect a statue in your name. If you’re average, a few friends might gather, raise your name to the sky before they set your soul to sail,” Dunham shrugs, her fingers touching fleetingly on a boy’s name, her skin painted apricot under the golden sun. “It’s a comfort, both to those left behind and to the person who gave their life to know someone will remember them. He gave us the Bridge, Olivia, a chance to fix things and in return…he didn’t even get that. I want to know who he was, do you understand?”

“Perfectly,” Olivia says harshly. “And it’s not worth the lives you’re risking.” Furious, she walks away. Dunham doesn’t call her back. To a degree it’s an exaggeration, the number of Fringe events has dwindled since the Bridge was formed but Olivia likens the behaviour to the eye of a storm, forever braced against a coming whirlwind. She’s staring over the same bluff when Olivia sees a boy at the edge of the graveyard, red hair and a smattering of freckles, maybe fourteen. He’s wearing an army jacket three sizes too large and his eyes are brown, melting soft. There’s a blood splatter on his torso.

From ten meters away he says, “Sit,” and Olivia’s legs fold, a puppet with no strings. He laughs, low in his throat like a warning growl, and jumps over a fallen log. “I’ve seen your face on the List. Haven’t come into your own yet, have you? That’s alright, missy.”

He’s fourteen and Olivia wants to missy him over the edge of the cliff.

His smirk’s the sickle curve of a blade, full of malice, there are fingers crawling through Olivia’s brain, her mind growing dark with a swarm of bees. The Secretary said the Other side was filled with monsters and this is it standing before her. Dunham always seemed to be in denial over what had been done to her - the other cortexiphan kids ran the gauntlet from horrified to traumatised - but the red-headed boy’s the first Olivia’s seen who exults in his abilities, careless with his intentions. Olivia can’t move, blood pounding in her head, a wall of agony.

“I know what you are,” the boy sing-songs, staring at her like a slab of beef, his eyes trailing down her body, lingering on her breasts. “You’re Olivia Dunham.”

“So am I.” Dunham walks into the clearing with her gun raised, the boy held in her sights. “Let her go, Tyler.”

Tyler startles, he takes an uncertain step, eyes narrowed as he stares at Dunham. “I can multi-task, you know. Two, or even three people at a time.”

“It won’t work on me. Let her go.”

Dunham advances. Tyler scowls, arrogance diminishing with each step Dunham takes, his voice takes on a blustery waver. “I could tell her to jump off the cliff and you couldn’t stop me.”

“I could shoot you,” Dunham says evenly.

No you wouldn’t, Olivia thinks, frozen in her own body. The little tyrant’s only fourteen, and there are twin spots of anger on his face, his fingers twitchy as he looks between them. He sneers at her. “Run.”

Olivia explodes upward, arms and legs pumping, mind screaming denial as her feet take her over the edge. She sees Dunham drop the gun and sprint, stride for stride, t-boning her as they twist mid-air.

It’s a freefall, a rush of colour, the blurred ground approaching fast. Don’t leave me, Olivia thinks, arms clawing at her double.

There’s a good reason why Walter began the experiments in a tank of water, for one, it’s a soft landing if Dunham inadvertently jumped universes. Concentrate on where you want to be, except its difficult when plummeting to the earth. They materialise mid-air in the bridge-room, feet running on nothing like cartoon characters, three meters up. They hit the concrete with jarring impact, rolling apart, Olivia flat on her back, Dunham curled on her side. There’s blood on Dunham’s mouth where she’s bitten her lip clean through, holding one arm close to her body as she rocks silently. Olivia let’s loose with string of profanities, trying to shake the pain off as the personnel in the room – momentarily frozen with shock – swarm around them.




***
From: (Anonymous)
So spellbinding yet again - rich and tense and full of fierce insights into the characters, even in throwaway sentences: I adore this, more-or-less-anon! ;)
From: (Anonymous)
This is absolutely incredible.
From: (Anonymous)
Please, Anon, may I have some more?
Really loving this.
From: (Anonymous)
(this would be the kink-part of the fic. Warnings for imitations of slash between two women; warnings for unlawful kidnapping, and an apology to the OP, I promise I'll never post a wip to this comm again)



There’s a good reason why Walter began the experiments in a tank of water, for one, it’s a soft landing if Dunham inadvertently jumped universes. Concentrate on where you want to be, except it’s difficult when plummeting to the earth. They materialise mid-air in the bridge-room, feet running on nothing like cartoon characters, three meters up. They hit the concrete with jarring impact, rolling apart, Olivia flat on her back, Dunham curled on her side. There’s blood on Dunham’s mouth, where she’s bitten her lip clean through, holding one arm close to her body as she rocks silently. Olivia let’s loose with string of profanities, trying to shake the pain off as the personnel in the room – momentarily frozen with shock – swarm around them.

***

“Who puts a cemetery near a cliff?” Olivia spits, vicious and hurting. “Bam a husband dies, let the widower take a nice stroll over the grounds, it lacks a certain foresight…and Walter, if you shine that light in my eyes again I swear I'll shoot you.”

“You seem your normal delightful self,” Walter observes candidly.

Her head won’t stop pounding; Olivia doesn’t know if it’s from the fall or what Tyler did, his fingers scrabbling in her mind, she looks away hurriedly. “I couldn’t do anything, Walter. God, how are we meant to *fight* people like that?”

It’s the wrong Walter and the wrong question. The Secretary would have given a rousing speech about defending home and hearth no matter the cost, but for the man who’s partially responsible for these so-called Soldiers, there is no answer. Walter’s eyes are watery, filled with remorse, he opens his mouth twice before he shuts it. You thought we were a threat all the way back in 1981, Olivia wants to accuse. Walter, who has the foresight to build armies decades in advance, doesn’t know how to respond to a question posed face-to-face with his enemy. Olivia wants to shake him by the shoulders.

“It wasn’t about war, not for Belly and me,” Walter defends, his voice wavering. “It was about science, we never intended…”

“You worked for the military,” Olivia interrupts tiredly. “How did you *think* it would pan out?” He conducted experiments on military bases with military brats; it’s at times like this Olivia thinks he’s more of an idiot savant than a true genius. “You don’t think about the consequences, Walter, or how people might use them. They’re nothing but monsters.” It’s the Secretary’s choice of word, but it feels good to let it go, to let the memory of Tyler, the film of black oil that smothered her self-control, drift away.

Walter’s eyes focus on a point over her shoulder.

When Olivia turns her head she sees Dunham walk into the change-rooms, her shoulders erect against any sign of discomfit. Olivia swears again, savage, under her breath.

The showers are hazy with steam. Dunham stands under the spray, eyes closed, water streaming down her body; out of sight of observation she holds one arm stiffly against her ribs and breast. The wing-span of her shoulder’s completely black, the tip of the bruise ending near her ribcage, the colours dwindling into malevolent storm-clouds, shot through with violets and greens. Nothing’s broken, but Dunham won’t be able to move her arm tomorrow. Her eyes are closed, the water on her face resembling tears. One foot’s arched, weight resting lightly on her toes, the line of muscles running from calf to thigh defined in subtle swells. Olivia’s never really looked before, never seen herself with a stranger’s eyes; from the pale column of a throat to the swell of firm breasts, flat stomach supported by the curve of her hips, light hair between her legs, this is the topography of Olivia’s body.

Olivia pulls her shirt off and skims out of her cargo’s, shares the same water under the same spray. If Dunham overheard her, Olivia can’t muster an apology. She thinks somewhere in Dunham’s hindbrain she agrees with what Olivia said; it twists her up inside, makes Olivia ache, as if it’s her own body bruised from multiple falls. She takes the soap and the wash-cloth, her actions meditative, quiet, and runs the cloth down the other woman’s back, gentle over the bruise, firm across the swell of her buttocks, discreet between her legs. Olivia takes her time, eyes lowered to the task, shares the silence, the ritual of wiping something clean and turns the other woman into the spray, lets the suds run from her body. Olivia stands upright, staring into eyes moss green. Dunham fits, perfect height, perfect size, the other woman drops her head and Olivia catches her, her breath moist and wet, her body juddering quietly, face tucked into the crook of Olivia’s neck.

“I’m sorry,” Olivia doesn’t say.

***

“I want to try one more time,” Dunham says a week later.

The Secretary frowns, he’s been pressing on them to return to the last reality, where Tyler was, where they know for sure Peter’s body can be found. Olivia turns from him and focuses on Walter. “Would you like to choose again?”

There are only a handful of snow-globes on the table. Walter hesitates then selects the one furthest to the left, holding it toward Dunham as if it’s precious, infinitely fragile.

Dunham holds her hand out and Olivia takes it, fingers intertwining, letting Dunham slip into distance, the celestial space she requires. Nothing happens, until suddenly it does. It’s not a bluff and it’s not a grave. They’re standing in the hallway to a motel, doors leading to either side, the muted sound of a television competing against quiet conversation. The import doesn’t strike Olivia until Dunham turns, her face sharp, predatory, and says. “He’s here.”

***

Peter walks on the edges of his feet, soundless, weapon canted toward the ground. Merrill’s hut lies fifteen minutes away, due west, a broken old pick-up’s parked on the property; Peter can hotwire it in less than five seconds. There’s a low mist hugging the ground, the moon’s weak light only bright enough to be misleading. Peter hears the woman before he sees her and drops into a crouch. FBI sounds suspiciously official but it’s nothing Peter’s heard before. He’s had a few run ins with the CCD but most people who expend energy finding him don’t have Peter’s best interests at heart.

And CCD doesn’t allow relatives to work together, let alone twins.

The blonde’s had military training at some stage, unlike Peter she doesn’t keep her weapon canted down but level with her eyesight, wherever her head turns the weapon follows. It cuts down on crucial seconds if there’s a gunfight. Peter’s earlier hope she might be less efficient than her partner, dwindles.

This better not be another ghost from his father’s past, he thinks bitterly.

It’s a universal habit for people to waste time assigning blame on someone else – Walter Bishop was executed twenty-six years ago for unlawful experimentation – but it hasn’t stopped people from turning the surname Bishop into a pariah. It hasn’t stopped people from trying to extract revenge on Walter’s remaining family. Peter grew up in schools where kids spat on the pavement as he walked past, where he came through the doorway of his house with bloody noses and torn clothes.

He watched his mother grow dark; her hands beginning to shake with tremors, reaching for alcohol, pills, escape. They moved houses so often Peter lost count. He’s come home to windows smashed in - to walls graffitied with animal’s blood - he’s come home to a cooling body, her hair a mess of riotous curls, a parentless house. Peter’s thirty-three years old; he’s had more names than a Russian novel and he’s been hated long enough to know the best defence is, hating everyone else in kind. He’s more criminal than legitimate; he’s own personal way of saying ‘fuck-you’ to the system that branded him before he reached ten.

If someone’s trying to shoot Peter in the middle of the night, he wants to know why.

The blonde walks past mere feet away and Peter rises, pivoting on one foot, one hand to her nape, the other on her upper shoulder, and slams her forehead into the tree. The punch is angled under her diaphragm, a quick jab, little force with maximum damage and the woman drops her weapon, feet buckling. She strikes out anyway, rattlesnake quick, one foot driving into his instep. Eerily, the fight’s silent, Peter from necessity, the woman out of self-habit.

Peter lifts her bodily and throws her, snatches the weapon she dropped on the ground, and aims, breath frosting the air.

She rolls into a crouch, one leg extended to the side, hand braced against exposed roots. She’s bleeding from a cut above her eyebrow and the expression on her face is nothing but fierce. She’s not the type to go quietly, there’s a part of Peter, locked down tight with control, which admires the tenacity. She’s beautiful; in a scary terminator kind of way, Peter lets his mouth tilt and asks cordially. “Were you looking for me?”

He’s perfectly happy being polite if he’s the one holding the gun.

She’s staring at him like a ghost; like Peter’s someone she didn’t expect to find. Her voice is low, musical. “Are you Peter Bishop?” When he doesn’t respond the woman frowns; she shifts position, drawing her leg in until she’s balanced on her haunches, arms resting carelessly on her thighs. “My name’s Olivia Dunham, we need your help.”

There’s something laughable about that, considering he’s been shot and chased from his motel. Peter lets his tone turn condescending, as rude as he can possibly be. “Darling, I’m all for having three beautiful women in my room, but there’s a little formality called ‘invitation’, and I don’t recall extending it.” He lets the smile drop, leans forward. “Who do you work for?”

“The FBI,” Olivia says evenly, as if the acronym isn’t gibberish.

“And what does that stand for?” Peter says sarcastically. “The Federal Bureau of Insanity?”

“A closer descriptive than I care to admit.” Her mouth curves; oddly, Olivia doesn’t seem phased by her position, her body relaxed, bright and intent. She wipes the blood from her eye as if it’s nothing but an irritant. “I need you to stay put for a minute and listen to what I have to say.”

“While your partner approaches from behind?” Peter puts his back to the tree, his voice nonchalant, at odds with the tension in his frame. He looks past Olivia and calls out. “You’re not going to kill me, you already had the chance, and you’re making my trigger-finger itchy standing in the shadows.”

The redhead emerges, weapon pointed true. “How’s the arm?”

“Peachy.”

She smirks, her eyes taking in the blood on Dunham’s face. “Liv?” she asks quietly.

The blonde shakes her head, the smile slipping the corner of her mouth up, a token reassurance as the three of them stand off against one another. “I’m going to tell you a story, Peter, and you’re going to listen, if you don’t, Olivia here will shoot you in the leg, and trust me, their medical technology can fix any injury she inflicts.”

He blinks rapidly, parsing out her sentence and coming up short. “You have a strange way of asking for help.”

“It’s true,” the redhead mutters, half under her breath.

Dunham lays the story out, the bare-bones of a universal cock-up, a war barely averted, a Bridge that needs to be separated, and a DNA code, a force of will to guide it. Peter doesn’t blink throughout the recital, nor does he lower the weapon. The redhead doesn’t shift position either and Peter feels she could stand there forever, her aim never wavering. When Dunham finishes there’s silence for almost two minutes.

“You’re telling me he built a Bridge, and in doing so, wiped himself out of existence. And now that you’ve found the solution, you want me to dismantle the same Bridge and…what? Wipe myself out of existence, too?” Peter’s smile is all teeth. “Sweetheart, I’m sorry to say, but colour me unenthused.”

“You did it before.” Olivia says, the gun a comfortable weight in her palm

Peter looks over defiantly, words sharp enough to cut glass. “Whatever experiences *your* Peter had, they’re not mine. Find yourself another solution.” He slips to the left, leaving the shelter of the tree. “I'm sorry ladies, but I can’t help you.”

Olivia refocuses, drops the sight a fraction to the left. Dunham waves her hand, watching Peter intently. He’s almost out of sight when Dunham sighs, palm upturned, and Olivia remembers Tyler, telekinesis or mind-control, her will pushed down like a bug in her own skin.

Peter drops abruptly, face down on the ground, all four limbs stretched as if chained, the muscles in his body corded, spine arched. Olivia hears him grunt, lungs expelling air. Dunham says tonelessly. “Stop fighting.”

Olivia holsters her weapon, trots over briskly and snaps the cuffs on his wrist, binding his hands behind his back. Peter's eyes are squeezed shut, blood flowing from his nose as he struggles. Olivia ruffles his hair in commiseration. “It’s a bitch, isn’t it?”

Whatever’s holding him releases. Peter curls inward, coughing helplessly. Olivia snags her finger on the chain and forces him upright onto his knees. He twists to stare over his shoulder, searching for Dunham. Up close he’s younger than Olivia first thought, the stubble hiding it well. His eyes are blown wide, startled. Olivia stands, waits until Dunham’s close, then wipes the blood from her forehead, kisses her once on the lips in celebration, a barely-there touch, because this is it, they found him. “You wanted to know what Peter Bishop was like,” she teases.

Dunham looks at her solemnly, regret already written in her eyes.

“Wait,” Peter says, he’s dropped the attitude, his voice raw. “Wait…please. If you take me *anywhere* against my will, if you put me near that Machine, I swear to god I’ll make your life difficult.” He looks between them, reading their combined expression as if it’s the written page. “Please…”

Dunham wraps her fingers in Olivia’s hand, blood tacky between them. With the other, she wraps her hand around Peter’s neck, palm against throat, her thumb jabbing into the soft flesh under his chin, forcing his head backward. “I’m sorry,” Dunham whispers, and lets his world fall away.
From: (Anonymous)
Jesus Christ. It was amazing. Thanks, thanks, thanks a lot.
From: (Anonymous)
Damn. This is one of the best Fringe stories I've ever read. I love this so very much.
From: (Anonymous)
Love love love.
goodbyebird: Fringe: Two versions of Olivia, one blue and one red. (Fringe and then there were two)
From: [personal profile] goodbyebird
Absolutely marvelous! Straight into my Top Ten. *snuggles this forever*

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January 2013

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