Jane was rather upset that she didn't dream, because she was hoping that they would spark some memories of her past life. After her flashback in the first episode, I think it's quite realistic to think that the dream situation would change. And with the mysterious circumstances surrounding Jane's memory loss, I don't think any dreams she does have will be pleasant.
This starts out with a lot of angst and sadness, but don't worry, there's a happy ending... or rather, maybe a hopeful ending?
A week ago, she would have given anything to dream. To remember something from her past.
Now though, she just wanted to go back to the time before. To lying unconscious in that bag. Back then she had been a clean slate. No memories, but also no worries. Her sleep was peaceful and undisturbed.
Ever since she came out of the bag though, her life had been a living nightmare. She knew nothing yet she knew everything. The polygraph guy asked for her name and she didn't know. And yet she was able to read and speak Chinese without a second thought. Dr. Borden asked if she'd rather have coffee or tea, and before sipping she hadn't known her preference. But then again, she was able to take on two guys at once so her drink preference was relatively unimportant in comparison.
She told Kurt, the man whose name was tattooed across her back, that she felt like nothing was real. At the time she'd been partially convinced that everything she was experiencing was in fact a dream or nightmare.
But now she realized how foolish those thoughts had been. She was certainly alive. It was real. For now that she actually was dreaming, the difference was startling. Awake she could act on her own free will. In the scenes that played out while she was sleeping though, she was a slave to her mind. Like a puppet, her actions were not her own and she was pulled along by the strings, made to act by some unseen force.
She had started dreaming again on her second night in the safe house. It was right after she shot Chao and had her first flashback. It seemed like her mind had latched onto the shooting as a gateway, because guns were everywhere in her dreams. In her hands, in the hands of others. Being loaded, being shot. Blood. Bangs. Death.
It was too much. For going from not remembering anything to only remembering those horrific images, it was too much for her to take. She couldn't handle another night watching helplessly as she shot another person, killed another living, breathing human being. It didn't matter if they were the enemy or not. Death was death.
And death plagued her everywhere.
After waking up, she tasted death on her breath, felt it through the tips of her fingers and down to the soles of her feet. The memories filled her up like lead.
It was too much and she couldn't handle it anymore.
She stopped sleeping.
It was the simplest solution her mind could come up with, and really, after the first night, it wasn't that hard. After spending her days at the FBI being asked questions she couldn't answer, and only helping occasionally with questions she could, Kurt or another agent dropped her off at the safe house again. She had dragged a blanket downstairs. The house had a draft, and so, tucked into the blanket and with a cup of hot tea in her hands, she spent her nights watching the television.
She didn't discriminate between shows at first. After all, she didn't know what she liked or disliked, just as before with the coffee and tea.
Soon she had developed a schedule though. She wasn't a fan of reality TV, which was really quite unfortunate as there seemed to be an abundance of shows involving celebrities acting dramatic, or contestants competing in insipid competitions.
At first she thought she liked police procedurals, but the violence became too familiar to what she was trying to escape from. Instead she rotated between the English and Chinese channels, watching a variety of dramas, comedies and news programming.
One early morning she discovered cartoons, which opened an even larger world of possibilities. She was quickly drawn into Scooby Doo in particular. She liked how in one short episode the main characters were able to follow the clues, solve the mystery, and find the bad guy. No one ever got shot or seriously injured. But they always solved the case, something that struck a deep chord within her. If she couldn't figure out her own mystery, at least she could solve the ones on television.
Within a few days though, she realized that she couldn't operate without sleep for much longer. Her overall reflexes were slower, she was bumping into things that were easily avoidable, and she had a hard time concentrating on the simplest of tasks.
She didn't think anyone really noticed, or if they did, they didn't care. Of course, Kurt noticed. Kurt saw everything. When she dozed off while going over the tattoo symbols with Patterson, the head of the forensics unit, she had quickly apologized and gotten back to work, but not before seeing Kurt pass by and look over in concern.
After that incident, she experimented with taking short 60 minute naps. There was some documentary on the Discovery channel about REM cycles the other night. She figured if she timed herself, and pulled out of sleep just before she hit that certain point, maybe she could forgo dreaming altogether.
It was ridiculous and tedious. But it worked. She was still tired, but not nearly as much so. She could average about four or five hours a night if she started as soon as she got back and set the timer on the kitchen stove.
And she still managed to squeeze in some cartoons in the morning before heading in.
One night though, there was a horrible thunderstorm and she lost electricity in her apartment. It was in the middle of her sleep though, so she didn't realize it at first. Then she had her first nightmare in days.
It was like all of the ones she missed had piled up together and unloaded all at once. She saw a field of tall, dry grass surrounded by trees. In the middle of the grass was a bullseye, and in front of it, a chair. At first, she was too far away to see who was in the chair.
That didn't stop her from making a perfect shot.
Of its own accord, her hand rose in the air and she fired the gun. She took a step closer and someone new took a seat in the chair. Over and over it went. As she got nearer to the target, her hand was shaking wildly, but she still managed to have perfect aim every single time.
Eventually a face came into view. She tripped over her feet when she recognized the person as the assistant director of the FBI, Agent Mayfair. After she stood back up, the woman was dead in seconds.
She didn't think she could go on when Patterson was the next person to take a seat. It helped when she closed her eyes. Although the shot seemed louder then, at least she didn't have to witness the bullet hitting the center of their foreheads.
When Kurt sat down, she was inches away. He looked at her with warm, compassionate eyes, completely different than how he had greeted her in person. "It's okay," he said, and only then did she pull the trigger.
When she woke up, she was gasping and shaking. What at first she thought was sweat, she soon realized was tears running down her face.
The living room was pitch black and the clock on the stove was blinking to indicate a power outage. Just like with everything else, she didn't know how she knew, she just did. Instead of resetting the timer though, she turned on all of the lights on the first floor. She needed light and warmth and no more darkness and death.
Wiping away the tears from her eyes, she settled back down onto the sofa with a cup of tea and a box of cereal. She flipped on the television and spent the next several hours numbing herself with the laughs and jokes of Cartoon Network.
That's how Kurt finds her the next day. Usually they just wait outside for her; no one had come in since that first day. They brought her food when she requested it, but they never ventured farther than the doorstop.
Kurt is early though, and doesn't knock since he has a key. When he walks into the safe house, she is still in the same spot, watching Scooby Doo run away from a monster who they will no doubt later find out is the janitor or something.
She doesn't realize he's there at first. It's only when he comes around the couch, that she turns her gaze to him. Immediately she tugs off the blankets and brushes the cereal crumbs from her lap. "Sorry!" she mutters, keeping her gaze down and getting up to go get ready.
"No, no," Kurt says with a shake of his head. "I'm early. It's fine."
Still, she scrambles to put her stuff away in the kitchen and heads towards the stairs. Her hand has just clasped around the banister when Kurt speaks.
It's the command, but not the name that makes her comply. After all, she's only had it for a little more than a week, and it's not truly her name. It feels like it doesn't belong. Like a placeholder.
She turns to Kurt, and she's surprised to see his brows furrowed and his lips set in a thin line. He motions for her to sit down again, and it's only when she does so that she thinks about what she must look like.
Wild hair. Rumpled clothes. Camped out on the sofa with dark circles under eyes. When he opens his mouth, she expects him to tell her that she's done. That they're giving up on finding out what all of this means. She scratches at her peeling skin, at the healing tattoos that cover three-quarters of her body. She feels like crying.
Instead she plants her feet firmly on the ground, and not tucked up underneath her on the sofa like she wants to. After all, there's no point in getting comfortable if she is about to be kicked out soon. She stares at her hands, wringing them together. The black sleeves of her shirt are long enough to cover the tattoos on her wrists. She doesn't need the reminder.
"Jane." Kurt's voice is low, almost imperceptible. She forgets that he is talking to her until he says her new name again.
She lifts her head to meet his gaze. "Yes?" Her voice is neutral. Good. If he's going to give her bad news, the worst thing that she could do was breakdown as he did it.
Kurt opens his mouth to say something else, and then, apparently thinking better of it, closes it again. With a sigh, he circles around to the other side of the sofa and sits down. He stares for too long at the blanket still rumpled up beside her. Immediately she begins to fold it, and places it delicately on her lap, fiddling with the fringes on its ends. Kurt looks away and places his elbows on his knees.
Finally he speaks. "We don't have to be in for another few hours today, so I was thinking we could talk."
Her fingers still, going over what he just said, but it gets her nowhere. His sentence could have a dozen different meanings. "Okay?" She didn't intend to make it sound like a question.
"Just for a little bit," he says slowly, carefully, as if she is going to dash out at any moment. "Then we'll go in and you can continue your work with Patterson."
A smile threatens to spread over her face, but she reigns it in, biting her cheek. Inside though, she is filled with joy. Her work with the FBI every day is the only sense of a life she has right now, and with no memories of anything else, she doesn't know how she would cope if it was all to suddenly just end.
She is too consumed with the overwhelming feeling of relief, that she doesn't even notice when Kurt starts talking again. "Sorry," she interrupts with a shake of her head, turning towards him, "What were you saying?"
There is that frown from before. His eyes pierce hers in an analytical sort of way. He looks at the blanket again, and then at the television. When he turns to her, his face holds a question. "What time did you get up this morning?"
Momentary panic flares inside her as she tries to figure out what to say.
Then she sees the clock still blinking on the stove. She shrugs her shoulders, relieved at having a good excuse. "I don't know, the electricity went off and I haven't reset everything yet."
He seems to believe her, but then he goes and asks another question, somehow shattering her calm in one fell swoop. "What time do you usually get up?"
She can feel her eyes widen, just as her heartbeat quickens. If she tells him she's not been sleeping, she doesn't know what he'll do. Her brain shows her images of the psychologist that they set her up with the first day and that she's been seeing frequently, although she's not entirely sure why. Maybe it's the memory thing again. If she's not sleeping, perhaps they think talking about it with a doctor would help. And medicine. She doesn't want to take medicine. Her mind is already screwed up enough as it is.
When she opens her mouth to answer, no words come out.
"Have you been having trouble falling asleep?"
That she can answer. She shakes her head no.
She hesitates, then nods.
This doesn't seem to surprise Kurt at all. He leans back, sinking into the sofa.
She speaks before she even realizes her mouth has opened again. "I dream about guns."
Kurt's head jerks towards hers. A flash of concern passes over his features, but then he has stilled them into that passive, somewhat grim expression he always seems to have. "Guns?" he asks, voice light.
"Guns and shooting," she clarifies, gripping the blanket tighter. Some part of her is screaming that she shouldn't have told him, that she should have kept that information to herself. She thinks that is probably her conscious from before, with all of her memories intact. That part of her is probably right, but since she doesn't want to offer up any further explanation or evidence, she's going to listen to the other part that says Kurt is on her side. Maybe he can help.
He doesn't say anything else, seeming to be waiting for her to continue.
So she does. "I shoot a lot of people." She tilts her head to the side, then rephrases. "In my dreams, I mean. In my dreams, I shoot a lot of people." Involuntarily an image of Kurt's face flashes into her mind, followed by a slow motion visual of the bullet piercing his temple. She cringes.
"Do you shoot me?" he asks, not sounding angry, just curious.
"Yes," she croaks out. She's worried admitting that will make him stop helping her, but it's the truth and she has no reason to lie.
He nods his head again, as if confirming some suspicion he had long been harboring. Knowing how perceptive Kurt was, he probably had known about her sleepless nights since they started happening. She recalled him seeing her doze off with Patterson, and him always being the one to make sure she was okay after bumping into something in her sleep-deprived haze.
Then, he surprises her by smiling. "Don't worry, we'll get through this. It happens to the best of us."
She's shocked beyond words, not just by the smile, but by how his reassurance had instantly made her feel so much better. She feels less alone somehow, and not quite so hopeless.
Pulling out his cellphone, he checks the time. He looks to her and nods his head towards the television set. "Still an hour or so before we need to head in. Want to show me what you've been watching the past week in the wee hours of the morning?"
A grin pulls at her lips, and this time she doesn't bother to hide it. She even laughs a little, and grabs the remote control.
For the next hour, they watch Scooby Doo in almost complete silence, except for the moments when Kurt butts in with his expert opinions about who the bad guy is. She's already seen the episode though, and knows it's the museum manager, but she keeps quiet because she likes to hear Kurt talk.
Sitting there, she no longer felt like it was all too much. The questions still remained, and they were ever growing; however she didn't feel like they were suffocating her anymore. Instead, for the first time since she had woken up in that bag, she felt at peace.
I was really intrigued by the first episode of Blindspot! I'm not entirely sure I like it yet, but I'm interested. There are so many ways the show can unfold, so I'm going to wait to form an opinion. (Does it remind anyone else of Kyle XY? And not just because it has the same main actress, Jaimie Alexander?).
Agent Weller and Jane Doe are awesome characters though, no matter what I think of the show. I really like seeing the interactions between them, and am dying for more.
I have absolutely no idea what's going to become of all the tattoos on Jane's body, and I'm excited for the big reveal.
Note: All mysteries remind me of Scooby Doo, and because it is one of my favorite shows of all time, I couldn't help include it in this fic.
I hope you enjoyed this! It's only roughly edited, and no beta, so I apologize for any mistakes. Let me know what you think!