Just a little something between my two favourite video game sisters, a quiet moment the night before they go to Helios and all hell breaks loose. I love their relationship.
Tomorrow was the big day. It was getting very late and Fiona could see stars twinkling against the dark Pandoran sky from where she sat in the cockpit of the caravan. The caravan that had been turned into a massive goddamn space ship. It pointed upwards, aiming for a large opening in the ceiling of the cave that housed her home. Hollow Point. It was possible, she thought idly, that this might be the last time she would ever see it. Fiona ran her fingertips across the newly-installed buttons and dials that scattered the dashboard and felt a wave of anxiety pass through her. She was the one who was going to be piloting the thing. She'd never even been in a space ship before and now she had to fly one up to the big H that loomed in front of the moon.
Hell fire, what had she gotten herself into?
Maybe Sasha should stay behind, Fiona thought as she stared at the unfamiliar instruments on the dashboard, so she won't die when I accidentally crash this thing.
Speak of the devil. Fiona turned in her seat to smile at her sister as Sasha climbed the ladder through the hatch, sending a warm smile back at Fiona.
"Hey. Can't sleep either, huh?"
"Nah. I keep thinking about the hundred thousand ways we might die tomorrow. Kinda makes it difficult to drift off." Sasha climbed up to the cockpit and positioned herself as comfortably as possible next to Fiona's seat, sitting on the bars separating the cockpit from the rest of the caravan-ship. She looked up through the opening of the cave to the sea of stars in the sky. "I can't believe we're actually going up there."
"Yeah," Fiona swallowed the anxious lump in her throat, "as long as I don't crash this thing before we even make it off the ground. Why am I the one driving this thing, again?"
"If anyone can make sure we don't all die in a horrible fireball, it's you, Fi. Who else would you trust to pilot this caravan? August? Finch?" She snorted loudly and grinned at Fiona. "Rhys?"
Fiona let out a loud laugh and it felt good. "Fair point. He was the one driving when the whole back end fell off this thing."
"That's the spirit!" Sasha looked up at Fiona, who smiled down at her, but Sasha didn't miss the tension she tried to hide from her face. "Hey," she took Fiona's left hand in her right one and gave it a gentle squeeze, "it's gonna be fine. It's not the journey part I'm worried about. You got this."
"Should be me comforting you, not the other way around," Fiona mumbled, giving a return squeeze to Sasha's hand.
"Older sister duties, right? Fi, you've spent your entire life looking out for me." Sasha turned to look back up at the stars again. "Even when Felix was taking care of us. It was always you doing the worrying for me, making sure I never went without for anything. It's ok to be worried and you don't have to hide it. I'm a grown woman, now," and she preened a little, tossing her hair over her shoulder with her other hand, making Fiona snort loudly.
"Yeah, I'm not sure 'baby sister' really covers it any more. But... you are my baby sister. I just... I don't want anything bad to happen to you."
"I don't want anything bad to happen to you, either. You think baby sisters don't worry about their big sisters, too? That's why we look out for each other. And you gotta admit, we do a great job of it."
"We do, don't we?" Fiona grinned at Sasha, feeling a little lighter than she had five minutes ago. "I would've been toast if you hadn't jumped in to stop Finch and Kroger from killing me at the dome."
"You would've figured something out," Sasha said fairly, before grinning back at Fiona, "but yeah, we kicked ass."
"We escaped Athena. Y'know, before we, uhh, found out she's on our side." Fiona looked up at the sky, chewing her bottom lip slightly. "I hope she's ok."
"Me too. Maybe we can help Janey kick some ass when we get back, if she hasn't kicked enough by herself. Kinda feel like she'd be pretty good at it, too?"
"Yeah, agreed. I don't know who scares me more," Fiona chuckled. "They really are a match made in heaven."
The two of them fell into a comfortable silence, both staring up at the sky. Fiona's stomach churned as she considered the upcoming day. Despite their life of conning people, some of them incredibly dangerous, this was easily the most dangerous quest they were likely ever going to embark on. Helios, of all places. If it had been anywhere on Pandora, they'd have been ok. Pandora was dangerous, constantly throwing threats at anyone just trying to survive on it. But Fiona and Sasha had survived on it, for their entire lives. They were more than equipped for whatever the planet could throw at them. But Helios was a completely unknown beast. Sure, they were going to have Rhys with them and he knew it better than anyone. However, he was going to be elsewhere in the station, disabling security and making sure Hyperion wouldn't know they'd been infiltrated. Fiona and Sasha were going to have to do a lot of figuring out on the job, something which put Fiona on edge. Good thing they'd had a lot of practise at improvising.
"Ready to get your best bullshitting face on?" Sasha asked her, as though she knew what Fiona was thinking.
Fiona smirked at her. "Please. Those Hyperions aren't going to know what hit them. Mainly 'cause they're not even gonna know we're not supposed to be there."
"There's the Fiona I know and love."
"I still can't believe we have to go to asshole-central. Hyperion, of all places. Ugh."
"Yeah. It's gonna be weird to see Rhys and Vaughn's origin story. They voluntarily went to work there. Who would do that?!"
"Assholes," Fiona reasoned, causing Sasha to snort. "Let's face it, Hyperion hasn't exactly been kind to our planet."
"Well, to be fair, they were under the rule of the biggest asshole in the universe," Sasha said darkly and Fiona nodded in agreement. "Maybe they're just slightly less asshole-y now he's thankfully gone. And, to also be fair, Rhys and Vaughn... well, they're not... awful."
"You can go ahead and say they're decent," Fiona grinned at her. "No-one's more surprised than me. When we first met them, I seriously wanted to push them out of the caravan."
"Me too," Sasha agreed quietly. "Man, you should have seen them at the deal before everything kicked off. Vaughn was kinda quiet, but Rhys put out so much bullshit, he could rival even you. All this crap to August to convince him to sell the vault key, even though it was already a done deal. Such a salesman."
"And then when they tried to steal our caravan," Fiona chuckled as she thought back to that moment, "Vaughn was straight-up just like, 'yeah, you got us' and Rhys just tried to bullshit his way right out of it!"
"That crap would probably work on Hyperions, but not us," Sasha said, smiling fondly. "We expected assholes when we met them. Guess we misjudged them."
"Yeah, but then I don't think they thought much of us when they first met us, either. 'Pandoran scum', or something like that, anyway."
"Yeah. Though I wonder how much of that was Rhys and Vaughn, and how much was Hyperion."
Fiona made a small noise of agreement. It was fair to say they'd all learned a lot on this strange quest they'd been thrown into. Mere weeks ago, Fiona would have been convinced that someone like Rhys would betray them the second they stepped foot on Hyperion's doorstep. But she knew better, now. They'd all grown unexpectantly close during their journey and she was as surprised as anyone to find that she trusted Rhys with everything. He wouldn't betray them, stab them in the back and leave them on the space station. She reasoned that Rhys and Vaughn would have had every reason to believe Fiona and Sasha would stab them in the back. Stranded on Pandora, blacklisted from Hyperion and with no way off the dry husk of a planet, they would have been screwed.
What a strange few weeks it had been.
"Hey. Say we don't die tomorrow. We somehow pull off this ridiculous plan, avoid death by Vallory when we get back, and get rich from a vault. It could happen!" Sasha exclaimed at the skeptical look Fiona threw at her, laughing and shrugging. "I mean, what next? Just pretend for a sec that we actually do this thing. Ten million dollars, maybe even more. What would you want to do with it?"
"Get off this rock?" Fiona grinned at her. "That's been the plan this whole time, right?"
"Sure," Sasha smiled back at her, before it faded slightly. "But... that's what I've wanted. I hate this place and I've never made a secret of that. But, you've always been more comfortable here than I have."
"Didn't have much of a choice," Fiona countered softly. "We've been stuck here our entire lives. Had to learn how this whole planet worked if we were ever gonna survive here."
"Ha. Yeah. Fair point. I just... I just don't want you to feel like you have to take care of me."
Fiona frowned at her. "Where's this come from?"
"Nowhere in particular," Sasha smiled reassuringly at her. "It's just that, whenever we've talked about striking it rich, it's always been 'let's use the money to get out of here', because that's all I've ever talked about. You've always looked out for me and I know that you've worked so hard to get us the big score, so we could get out of here. And... you've never had the chance to do what you wanted. Do you even know what you want?"
Fiona stared at her, at a loss for once. What had prompted this?
"If we do get this money, or treasure, or whatever, I know what I'm doing. There's so much out there that I want to see. Remember those old books Felix had? About all the different planets out there. I want to travel and explore and just... see what's out there. Maybe I'll finally find somewhere I love enough that I'll want to stay," Sasha continued softly. "I think... it's time you thought about yourself, Fi. About what you really want out of all this."
I want you to be safe, she thought, but Sasha was right. Her baby sister was twenty-four years old, now. The number of dangerous situations they'd found themselves in before, and Sasha had always, always been able to hold her own, even when things had turned south.
"I guess... I'd never really given it much thought," Fiona conceded quietly. "Too busy trying to plan everything, to make sure it all goes off without a hitch. Well, as much as possible, anyway."
"Well, just, think about it. There's an actual possibility that we might be ok after this. I don't want to hold you back from doing something you'd love."
"Sasha, you could never hold me back," Fiona found Sasha's hand again and she just held it tightly. "You never have. I love you, you dope," and she grinned at Sasha. "Everything, everything has been worth it. I promise I'll think about it. But, whatever goes down, and all the stuff that has gone down, I couldn't ask for a better sister to do it all with."
"Same right back at you," Sasha squeezed Fiona's hand, smiling freely for the first time in days. "And we will be ok. Vallory and her useless goons aren't gonna stop us from busting open this vault and doing whatever the hell we want with our lives. Like... hey, what about vault-hunting?" Sasha looked at Fiona, wide-eyed and excited. "I mean, we're about to open one, but there are so many more out there!"
Fiona snorted loudly. "I appreciate the confidence, Sash," she chuckled, before becoming serious, "and, honestly, I can't say I haven't considered it. In passing. But, honestly? I don't know if I'm cut out for it."
"You kidding? You fought off two vault hunters with Athena. Athena told us she would train us... but it's you she chose to take with her through the dome. She saw something in you, Fi. I see it, too. You're tougher than you give yourself credit for."
"... Huh." Fiona stared at the stars for a moment, feeling suddenly and oddly giddy at the prospect. Then turned to her sister, smiling warmly. "Thanks, Sasha."
"Love you too, you dope," Sasha smiled back. "Let's just... get through whatever tomorrow throws at us. We got this."
"We got this," Fiona agreed, feigning confidence. She squeezed Sasha's hand one last time. "C'mon. We're gonna be stuck in this caravan for a while tomorrow. Let's grab a hot drink. If we can't sleep, we might as well enjoy these last few hours while we can."
"Sounds like a plan. You're buying, right?"
"Don't I always?" Fiona asked dryly, causing Sasha to giggle as they began to climb down the ladder.
Fiona felt lighter than she had done in days. They'd be ok. Somehow. They'd face whatever tomorrow decided to throw at them, together.
And kick its ass.