The sound of typing fills the room as Widowmaker steps inside.

It's dark as dusk, save for the overbright screens—four of them, all angled towards a woman silhouetted against the glow, seated comfortably in an office chair, spinning lightly from side to side as she keeps typing, occasionally glancing at a different screen, muttering under her breath as she works.

The sniper takes three steps into the room when the other woman's voice drifts over.

"It's polite to knock, you know," she calls. A pause. Widowmaker can hear the smile in her voice. "Or do spiders not have manners?"

Widowmaker lets the jab go. Sombra's good mood will not last—of this she is certain.

"It's strange," Widowmaker drawls, detaching herself from the shadows to step smoothly into the glow of Sombra's setup. The watery blue light turns the sniper's lilac skin ivory where it hits. Sombra keeps typing away at her keyboard, eyes trained to the screen.

"What's strange?" she asks, keeping her back to Widowmaker. The other woman smirks, amused at Sombra's tenacity. Her refusal to heel is an endless source of frustration and annoyance from Reaper, and an endless source of entertainment for the sniper.

"Strange, about that alarm," Widowmaker elaborates. "You are not one to make such simple mistakes, Sombra."

A pause. Hesitation seizes Sombra, if only for a moment. She casts a quick sideways look at where Widowmaker stands beside her monitors before dismissing her with a scoff.

"Please. Don't blame me for your missed shot, Widowmaker," she retorts. "You had plenty of time to take her out."

"Of course, forgive me," Widowmaker offers smoothly, smiling lightly to herself. "I did not mean to blame you—you were clearly very distracted." Her ocher eyes gleam in the near-dark. "The alarm isn't the only thing that seemed to slip your mind, is it?"

The clicking of the keyboard stops. Sombra's hands freeze—hanging suspended over her computer.

"What are you talking about?" she asks lowly, the arrogant edge to her voice dead in her mouth.

Widowmaker smirks, drifting closer. Sombra turns her head, assessing the woman sharply from the side.

Widowmaker—slowly, so slowly—lifts a hand to tap a slender finger against the side of her headgear, lips twisting in dark amusement when Sombra stares at her in angry confusion.

She so rarely get the drop on the little shadow—she's going to have a little fun with it.

"You forget, ombre," she murmurs, voice low, accent smooth. "Infrared."

Sombra balks—Widowmaker lowers her hand to stifle her laughter—and pushes out of her chair so quickly it topples over, clattering to the floor, wheels still spinning.

"Mentiroso," she accuses the other woman harshly. "Your infrared needed recharging." She settles back then, temper falling back to her familiar defense of calm superiority. "I know how your tech works, Widowmaker."

She twists the word like a knife—tries to draw blood with her voice. Widowmaker just shakes her head, amused.

"You may have been able to break Volskaya," she murmurs. "But you will have a much harder time with me." She leans closer, standing over the shorter woman, pulling her lilac lips back in a vampire smile. "Amiga."

The foreign word sounds completely wrong in Widowmaker's native accent, but Sombra goes still all the same, eyes narrowing.

"What do you mean?" she asks slowly, overconfidence bowing to caution. "There's no way you could have—"

Widowmaker scoffs, rolling her eyes, and Sombra breaks off, watching the other woman carefully.

"If you gamble against the clock, you will always lose," Widowmaker scolds her. "I hope you do not make a habit of it."

Sombra just stares at her, waiting for an explanation.

"The time it took for you to catch up with Volskaya and slip into her room was more significant than you realize," she explains, crossing her arms across her chest. "My infrared was not fully charged, but it was enough for me to get an idea…" she trails off, smirking. "You are somewhat…theatric, Sombra."

She colors at this—dark skin turning red under the other woman's judgment, and finally she cracks.

"So, what's your game?" she bursts out, glaring fiercely. "Going to report me? Huh? Going to tell Reaper?"

Widowmaker leans back, entertained. Sombra plays at indifference, but she knows the younger woman well enough—this shadow is spooked.

"What would I tell him, Sombra?" she asks, giving her voice an innocent lilt that has Sombra scowling in reply as the sniper moves to cross the room carelessly. She feels Sombra's gaze on her as she walks, and her lips curve with another smile.

Sombra can blackmail better than anyone—she's death to politicians and businessmen. Anyone with any ambition would be wise to watch their back for a shadow that's not their own.

Widowmaker is not so formidable on that front. She isn't a hacker—she can operate her own tech and that's enough—but she knows people better than Sombra knows any kind of computer. She may not be able to rebuild motherboards from scratch, or disassemble security cameras, or reroute power from turrets, but damn if she can't play people any way she likes.

She usually lets Sombra do whatever she wants—the little imp is Reaper's responsibility, not hers—but she doesn't mind flexing her manipulative muscles every once in a while, just to remind everyone who is the superior spy.

"Would I tell him that you tripped that alarm?" she asks, glancing over her shoulder to see Sombra staring at her rigidly in the gloom, the light from her screens throwing shadows across her face. "Would I tell him you had planned this all along? Tell him how you confiscated that photo of Volskaya for yourself, instead turning it over to Talon?" She spins lightly on her heel, turning to face the other woman head-on, quirking an eyebrow. "Or should I tell him about your new…friend?"

"What do you want?" Sombra spits.

Widowmaker leans down to pick up Sombra's forgotten chair and rights it, smoothly lowering herself down and pushing off the ground to wheel her way back in front of Sombra's screens, smirking as the other woman glowers at her.

"That's quite the blank check, amiga," Widowmaker muses, reclining back in Sombra's chair and propping her long legs on the desk. She settles back, ocher eyes alight with amusement at Sombra's anger.

"What do you want?" Sombra snaps again, stepping closer, teeth bared in a snarl.

Widowmaker holds her gaze a moment longer—part of her wants to keep this up for a week, just to teach the younger woman a lesson—but she resists, drawing her legs off the desk and pushing to her feet, once again standing above the hacker.

"Nothing you can give me, regrettably," Widowmaker tells her, voice void of the mocking sweetness it had held a moment before. She shifts her weight, placing a hand on her hip. "Do what you want with Volskaya. Kill the omnics, advocate for them, bring down all of Russia or make it a superpower…" she trails off, waving a lilac hand carelessly. "It makes no difference to me."

Sombra visibly relaxes, but her eyes narrow in suspicion.

"Then why bother with the production, viuda?" she asks, lip curling with dislike.

Widowmaker stares her down. "Because next time, it won't be me who sees you," she warns lowly. "And if Talon finds out you are working against them—or at the very least hiding things from them—they will destroy you."

This makes the other woman go still. Widowmaker continues.

"I have seen agents come and go, Sombra," she tells her. "And when they go, they are never seen again. You boast one of the most brilliant minds of this age, but there is no way to defend yourself against Talon once they have marked you."

Sombra stares up at her, mouth slightly slack, and Widowmaker exhales sharply, folding her arms and looking away.

"Keep your head down, keep your hands as clean as you can. Give them no reason to doubt you or your loyalties. Practice lying in the mirror if you have to, I don't care. Never let them catch you with your guard down." She glances back, arching an eyebrow. "Comprenez vous?"

Sombra nods once—the movement sharp and jerky. Widowmaker nods back before turning on her heel to leave the room. She still has to debrief with her retainer, fill out her mission report, collaborate with Reaper on what the story is going to be, probably coach Sombra on lying her way through a Talon interrogation, take a damn shower—

"Amélie," Sombra calls softly, and Widowmaker goes still at the sound of her name. Of course she knows it. The hacker knows everything.

There's a pause, and then Sombra says, very quietly: "I'm sorry about your husband. That's…that's fucked up, even for Talon."

Wiowmaker swallows hard, composing herself, before striding out of the room, muttering a quiet, "just keep your hands clean, ombre," over her shoulder.

Let Talon burn, Widowmaker doesn't care. If the time comes, she'll help Sombra strike the match.

Nothing you can give me, regrettably, she'd said of the little shadow's offer.

What about revenge?

Widowmaker stalks through the halls of Talon, chin up, dutifully ignoring the lingering gazes of other agents.

Now that's an offer she might just take.

So…Sombra's a thing?

before you ask no I don't know why tf I named it Crux let's all just move on okay I know it's a dumb name

I dig it man I dig it so much she's awesome that short was awesome and I went back and forth on all the things I could write about and finally settled on this but ugh I'm so happy she's so wonderful and all the discourse about her can fuck right off because y'all are grasping at straws like just let us have Sombra and let us love her okay dang fam

I've been seeing a lot of incredible Overwatch art lately, and that includes this lovely little comic by artbytesslyn which is pretty much what made me wanna write this fic in the first place, so there ya go! I fudged on some of the infrared stuff but like shhhh suspension of disbelief

Anyway, this is my last fic for quite a while because shit fam I'm writing a book and I gotta hop to it to stay ahead. I might throw up some little ficlets or scenes from larger, incomplete works, but for now we'll call it quits!

As always, feel free to shoot me and ask or a message if you want to chat! Have a good week kids!