Disclaimer: I do not own The Matrix. I do not own The Matrix Reloaded. I do not own The Matrix Revolutions. I do not own Neo, Morpheus, Trinity, Cypher, Zion, the Nebuchadnezzar, the Icarus, the Logos, Link, Tank or the Counselor. The only things I own are the things I came up with: names mentioned in passing, the Marquis, Clutch, Gizmo, Karma, Ovid, Titan and Blackstar, and the secondary character, Anna/Athena.

Just a little thing that popped into my head.Neo meets someone who also believes in that prophesy.set before Reloaded but after Matrix during one of the few stays the Neb has at Zion.

Meetings of Chance

Neo couldn't sleep.

He knew that, simply by default, he should be able to. He was indeed tired, did want to just relax backwards again and envelope himself back into Trinity's warm and smooth embrace and do the same to her. But he couldn't. His mind was too full now. It was buzzing with thoughts that always rushed back to him in a flood after they had been temporarily forgotten during the intimate moments he had with Trinity. He was well aware that sleep would not come to him, no matter how hard he tried. He needed to relax his mind.

He quietly slipped out of bed, smiling when Trinity instantly filled the warm spot where he had been just moments before. He loved that woman. He would die without that woman. He loved her too damn much to go on without her. He silently got dressed, watching her to make sure he did not disturb her. He quietly exited their room, taking one last glance at her before leaving.

He squinted up at the "stars" Zion had. This was his second time to be in this city, and he was already getting used to it. As a soldier, he was treated very nicely, the men who didn't or couldn't fight in the war always ready to talk to him or get him a drink, old women offering him something small to eat or even an extra blanket for his cold bunk on the Neb. It was nice. He liked it, and wished it would stay that way permanently. He sighed.

No, that wouldn't last very long. He didn't know when Morpheus planned to reveal Neo to the public, but had already been told that he would have to eventually. You can't hide a gigantic disturbance like Neo forever. Every time he flew in the Matrix or did something similar, people noticed. People were indeed starting to talk. He knew it would be soon. Soon, people would know he was the One. And the anonymity would disappear and he would have to accept the attention he would certainly be getting. Thank God for Trinity.

He knew that if she wasn't there, he would spontaneously combust. The stress of being the One was already crushing him. When people found out, they would all start expecting him to do miracles and all sorts of shit like that. He didn't even know what he was supposed to do! All he knew was that a prophecy had said that he would defeat the Matrix. And that stated absolutely nothing about HOW. He had no manual. He sighed, closing his eyes and his mind to everything. He didn't want to think about anything.

He wasn't even aware of the woman until she spoke.

"I guess I'm not the only one with insomnia," a female voice said, jarring his thoughts. He jumped, looking up quickly. There, leaning against the door of one of the apartments, sat a woman, not five feet from him. She was smoking a cigarette. Her hair was brown and not very neat at the moment, and her face was narrow and pale. Warm brown eyes set amidst dark circles stared amusedly at him, while pale and chapped lips turned upwards at his scare.

"Sorry," she said, taking a few steps towards him. Neo nodded, turning back to the view of Zion. She finished the distance between them and leaned on the rails next to him.

"So is it insomnia? Or just don't sleep, like the Counselor?" she said after a moment, taking a drag on her cigarette again and blowing out a plume of smoke.

"I just haven't had good luck in sleeping lately," he answered, turning to look at her. She smiled again.

"I like sleep. I just don't get any. I suppose it's these," she said, staring at the smoking butt between her fingers. "Medical research has proven they do deprive you of sleep. It also shows they cause lung and throat cancer and that I am killing you now with my second hand smoke." She looked back down on Zion, letting the half-finished cigarette fall into the great chasm of apartments. Neo watched it fall.

"Eh, I don't think one encounter with second-hand smoke is going to kill me," he answered. She chuckled.

"Suppose not. May I have the pleasure of knowing your name?" she asked, turning to him.

"Neo."

She nodded. "Good name. I like it. I have always wondered where some people get inspiration for their names. Some of them are so beautiful. Others are absolute crap. Yours.yours is beautiful. I have heard very few names as flowing as yours is. It just.it falls out of your mouth with the grace of a cat. Gorgeous," she said, smiling. Neo grinned back.

"Thanks. Will you grant me the same pleasure of knowing your name?"

"Anna. My name is Anna."

"Were you born here?"

"No."

"Then why "Anna?" Those who fight in the war always have a hacker name. And you do have plugs," he said, glancing down at her arm and the ugly black flaws every free person had. She closed her eyes and looked down.

"I just wanted to change it. But we'll get back to me later. I wish to know about you. You interest me. I have not seen your name on the roster at all. What ship do you serve?" she said, quickly changing the subject. Neo was bothered, but did not push it.

"The Nebuchadnezzar. I've been there for only one month, though," he responded.

"Strange. Every person who is freed or transferred is supposed to be immediately posted. You are not. They do it to make sure captain's don't have larger crews than they are supposed to, or if someone needs to be transferred and all that whatnot. You aren't on the Neb's crew list. Morpheus's records show that he has only filled one position since.well, since the Cypher incident. And that was just a few days ago. I heard the operator-Tank, right?-died from complications two weeks ago due to the injury he sustained from Cypher. So, either you are lying or Morpheus is lying. Which one is it, my dear?" she said after a pause. Neo blinked.

"I didn't know I wasn't on the list. I'm sorry. But I am a crewmember onboard the Neb. Scout's honor," he said, grinning slightly. Anna smiled back.

"Well.I suppose it's my fault. I shouldn't check that list, all it does is bother me," she sighed, staring down at Zion again.

"Why?"

"It reminds me that I'm not a captain anymore."

"You were a captain?"

"Mmhmm."

"For how long?"

"Oh.ten years. Not very long in comparison to others, but a damn long time in comparison to this war," she said, leaning forward slightly. Neo leaned forward as well, elbows on the safety railing.

"What was your ship?"

"The Marquis. It wasn't all that bad. And it had an excellent crew."

"Who were they?"

"Karma, Ovid, Gizmo, Clutch and Titan. Ovid was my second in command," she said, sounding proud.

"And what was your name?" he asked, curious still. She paused for a while before finally answering.

"Captain Athena," she said softly, frowning.

"Captain Athena.I swear I've heard of that before," Neo said, scratching his head. He was sure he'd heard it, knew he'd heard that name and the ship and even the crewmembers' names before. She snorted.

"Oh yes. I'm sure you have. I'm in the history files. The history/myth files. That's where people throw all the nutcases," she said knowingly, nodding at him. Neo frowned.

"Nutcases?"

"Religious wackos, captains who went berserk and killed their crew and themselves, people who had a little too much faith in themselves," she said, shrugging as if it were an everyday occurrence.

"Then why are you in there? What category do you fall under?" he asked, slightly amused at her explanation. She grinned in a parody of amusement.

"All of those. Technically," she answered. Neo blinked.

"I, uh."

"Nah. Don't say anything. Was a young, arrogant new captain. Had a good crew. Really good. And a good ship. Not the top of the line, of course, or the fastest, that honor is still on the Logos and the Icarus. But I heard of the prophecy, and the One.oh boy, I wanted to find that guy before anyone else did. THAT would guarantee me instant fame. So I set about searching. Became rather obsessed.and got careless. Desperate. One of my good friends told me that he had been told by the Oracle herself he would find the One. I finally found someone after nine years of searching.I truly thought it was the One. Most of the crew did, too. Everyone thought that it HAD to be him. So I pulled him. Jake Thompson, also known as Blackstar. Also known as the man who betrayed me and my crew to Sentinels," she said quietly, closing her eyes again. Neo stared at her, torn between feeling utterly sorry for her and wanting to leave. He didn't really want the fact that HE was the One to come up in conversation, and the way this was, there was a chance. However.he couldn't just leave.

"Blackstar went a little crazy. Shit. A LOT crazy. He was fine one minute, the next.I guess rejection does that to a person. Karma was a beautiful woman. Blackstar wanted to get into her pants. She said no. He tried to rape her. He was punished. Things just went downhill from there. He got obsessive, went completely insane when he discovered the fact that Karma and Ovid were beginning to have an intimate relationship. I wish I would have paid more attention to the rest of my crew instead of just his prowess in the Matrix.I would have seen it. All captains are under strict orders to quickly separate two individuals trying to start a relationship. I could have sent Karma off the ship," she said, shaking her head. Neo, however, was unable to stop himself before he asked the question she had just raised.

"Zion won't allow people with relationships to stay together?" he asked, alarmed. Anna raised an eyebrow.

"No.it jeopardizes the crew," she answered. Neo reminded himself to thank Morpheus for not sending Trinity away before Anna continued.

"And it did. It did more than jeopardize them. It killed them. Blackstar betrayed my crew and me. His obsession with Karma killed my crew. Ovid and Gizmo had been in the Matrix at the time.we couldn't fire the EMP until they got out. But time ran out. I had no choice. Titan was about to be mutilated. Karma was badly injured. Gizmo was dead because of an Agent. Clutch had been killed instantly when a piece of the hull buckled and crushed him. I realized the instant I turned the key and saw Blackstar grinning crazily at Ovid, still in the Matrix that he had done it. So, I turned the EMP, killed Ovid and then jammed a piece of a fallen catwalk into his gut. Karma died from injuries sustained from a Sentinel. Gizmo was shot to death by an Agent. Clutch had been smashed. Ovid had his brain fried. I myself killed Blackstar. The Marquis was damaged beyond repair. Usable parts went into usable ships. I resigned a few days after. Only Titan survived the incident, other than myself. He's operating onboard the Poseidon. I also hear he's excellent at what he does," she said, smiling slightly. She turned and looked up at him, still smiling. "So ends the story of Blackstar and Captain Athena. Two lost causes in a world that simply cannot deal with lost causes," she said, folding her arms across her chest. Neo stared at her for a few moments before turning back to stare down at Zion.

"I'm sorry," he said lamely, unable to think of anything else to say. She smiled wryly.

"It doesn't matter anymore. It's over and done with. I changed my name because I felt it no longer suited me. when I had the name Athena, it was to feel powerful. I chose it because it made me feel goddess-like and intelligent on the Internet. A place where I could be a goddess and have no one know I was just skinny, freckled, and got pushed in the mud every other day for being a nerd. I changed it because it most certainly did not suit me. Athena was the goddess of wisdom. Wisdom is something I lack, obviously. So I changed my name to Anna and cut off all contact with Titan, the last surviving member of my crew. Now I keep track of Morpheus.and the people he's found. Your story is very suspicious, Neo," she said, glancing at him now with interest again. Neo looked up at her.

"I swear, I don't know why my name isn't on the list," he said defensively. She smiled, laughing lightly.

"I do, though. The friend who was to find the One, as I am quite positive you know, was Morpheus. He already had a full crew a month ago, right before the Cypher incident. If he had freed someone a month ago, he would have been instantly required to return to Zion and give that person up to another crew. No." she turned to him, eyes wide and gleaming, "Morpheus wanted to keep you."

Neo swallowed. This wasn't beginning to look very good. Morpheus had not wanted to reveal Neo's status just yet. He had wanted to wait a bit longer then show what hope had just sprung from the Matrix. Anna grinned.

"You're him.aren't you? You are the One," she said softly, staring at him. When he didn't answer, she chuckled. "Your silence confirms it. Wow. The One has finally been found," she said, staring up into the illusion of a starry night sky above them.

"No one was supposed to know yet," Neo said, knowing that denying it wouldn't get him anywhere and he couldn't just sit there. Anna smiled.

"I guessed that much. Morpheus likes his little toys. Doesn't want anyone to play with them until he knows they are ready for public consumption. And I don't blame him. He seems very well aware of what's going to happen once the cat runs out of the bag," she said. Neo didn't say anything. He knew what was going to happen too, but had come out of his room for the purpose of forgetting it. it seemed it was following him everywhere.

"So. You're here to save the world," (Neo shuddered, remembering who had last said that) "and you don't know a damn thing about it, do you?" she asked, half-grinning. Neo paused and finally nodded.

"Must be scary. Especially for someone like you," she said, eyeing him. Neo frowned.

"What do you mean?"

"Well, you said you have been on the Neb for one month. That means you were freed last month. And I can tell you are WAY past the age limit. The limit is twenty-five.and you look about thirty-five. Correct?"

"Thirty-eight."

"Shit. How on earth do you survive?"

Neo smiled. "I have lots of support." Anna laughed.

"Yes, I suppose that matters. Well.believe me, I am definitely one of the people on your side. I have faith you can do it. I have faith you'll find the weird and twisted road that leads to the salvation of humanity. You," she said, pointing at him and the sleeping city, "are these people's Jesus Christ now. He knew what he had to do. You'll know what you have to do soon."

Neo wasn't sure how to respond to that at all, so he didn't. She seemed to understand and went back to staring at the city. They were both silent for a while until she finally spoke back up.

"Well, I think sleep has finally come back. You?" she said, backing up from the edge. Neo did the same.

"Yes, I think I'll be able to sit down and go back to sleep now," he said. She smiled.

"And don't worry. I will say nothing. I am content with knowing, not telling," she said reassuringly, patting him on the shoulder. He sighed in relief.

"Thank you.I was afraid you might."

She nodded curtly and turned, walking back to the door she'd been leaning on. Just before she opened it, she looked back to him, smiling broadly now.

"And I want to congratulate you," she said, sounding as if she were about to laugh. Neo raised an eyebrow.

"For what?" he asked, slightly wary. She giggled.

"You are certainly virile. You make your women scream," she said, laughing and disappearing into the darkness of her room.

Which was right next to his.

Neo felt a flush creeping up his shirt and quickly went back into his own room, feeling both proud of himself and embarrassed. He'd been determined to make Trinity happy tonight and had achieved it.he just didn't know that other's could hear her.

"Mmm.Neo?" He glanced up at Trinity, who was half-awake and looking for him in the semi-darkness. She sat up slowly.

"It's okay. I just couldn't sleep. I think I can now," he said quietly. Trinity slumped back down, and Neo couldn't help but smile to this. Trinity always slept like a rock in Zion. She felt safe, he guessed. He undressed, going over all in his mind what had just happened.

"You're these people's Jesus Christ now. He knew what to do, and so will you."

Neo, as he slid back into bed, wished it were that simple.

*****

I know, kinda weird and a little pointless. I just wanted to throw it out there, because there HAVE to be more people who wanted to find the One. I just kinda wanted to write a story showing how manic Morpheus could've been. So there. Review if you want to, don't if you don't want to. I take flames, constructive crit and happy reports. I REALLY want the middle choice, really, because this is my first fic I have posted here. PLEASE tell me if she is at ALL Mary Sue. If you liked Anna, I might find time to write the story of her and Blackstar and those misadventures, but if no one liked her at all, I'm peachy with that too. Whatever you guys want! I am your humble servant. Thank you for tolerating me till the end.