THIS IS AN OLDER FIC. This is it's first posting on fanfiction.net, it has existed at the Hardline forum before now. I'm putting this up because…. It's easier to give people links to the site than to the forum!
A/N: The counseling service idea is NOT MINE. Let me put that down first of all. It was created by a wonderful author called Arashi for Rurouni Kenshin, in the fic "The Kenshin-gumi Counseling Service." Of course, since this is a Matrix fic, it's quite different, but it wouldn't exist if it weren't for Arashi. If at any time I am notified that Arashi does not like me using the idea, I will take the fic down. Okay. ( I did send an e-mail, by the way.)
But, this idea did wonders for me after Kenshin's death, and with the grieving that the Matrix fans are going through, I thought I'd try to do the same. Yes, it's silly. But it's meant to be. As for where it takes place… well… that's up to you. Everyone has their different beliefs. Be it heaven, or whatever you like to think. For me, it's the Summerlands, the resting place between lives. But this is a fic to help the fans, so it's really up to you. It does, however, take place in the days immediately following Revolutions' opening.
This fic also exists because of Danascully's urging ^.^;; (I told you I couldn't do it properly.) I also want to apologize to her for taking so long to actually create it.
The Matrix Revolutions Counseling Service
By Vitani FyreWolf
It was all because they had been bored. Well, not bored, exactly, but rather unused to not being busy. They had never had time to themselves before. After a joyful reunion, the crew of the Nebuchadnezzar found themselves wanting something to do.
And so they ended up here.
The rooms were cluttered with pieces of paper, jammed in between telephone sets, scribbled with messages to each of the former resistance fighters. They had tried to keep everything organized for a short time, but that was soon forgotten as call numbers got out of control.
Neo tilted back in his chair, peering befuddled at the ringing phone. He had been answering calls for days, or what he thought were days… it was a little hard to tell in a place that had no time system. But it wasn't the time that was confusing. It was the people on the other side of the line that baffled him. He continued to answer questions from people who seemed to know more about him than they really had any right to. Somehow, they had figured that these people knew their story – and had gotten attached to them. It was a little weird to mean so much to people you had never met.
He rolled the chair forward a little and peered out into the next cubicle, his expression turning to one of gentle amusement. Trinity was stationed in that room, and her situation hadn't much changed over the few days. Phone tucked under her chin, hair mussed and tucked hastily behind her ears, beautiful eyes wide and hands moving frantically to keep up with the rate of the calls. She had to deal with most of it, not just of the calls directed towards her but also the ones the others handled that got rerouted to her – as most people wished, for just a moment, to reassure themselves of her existence. It had become a great source of entertainment for the others, who couldn't resist slipping by her doorway with grins on their faces at the normally calm and composed woman's predicament. A flat look and a pointed comment about shirking their own duties usually sent them scurrying back to their own phones, all except Neo, because her tongue never seemed quite as sharp when addressing him.
Not that Neo didn't add to the problem too, of course. It had been a day or so into the project when Neo had encountered an issue. Some of the callers were crying. The majority of the ones crying were women. Now, Neo may have been able to fly, stop bullets, and halt the war… but he froze when it came to a crying female. After several incidents when he panicked and dropped the phone, he came up with a solution – rerouting the calls to Trinity. She would know how to handle them, of course. Neo had an almost childlike confidence in his mate's abilities.
It hadn't taken long for her to pick up on the rise in her calls compared to the fall in his, and she confronted him about it.
"Neo." She stood in the doorway, arms crossed. Where anyone else's foot would be tapping threateningly, she managed to stay still and achieve the same effect.
"Yeah?" He swirled in the chair, probably a little more than necessary, and blinked at her.
"You've been giving me your calls, haven't you?"
His mouth opened, then closed, then opened again, before he gave up. She already knew anyway, so he nodded miserably. "Well… not all of them."
She sighed patiently. "And why, exactly, are you doing that? You can't say it's because there's a lack of calls on my end."
He muttered something that caused her to lean forward.
"They're crying." He repeated, looking sheepish.
"Neo, half of the callers we get are crying! You've been giving me half of your calls?"
She sighed and pressed a hand to her temple. Neo watched her with a conflicted expression on his face, unsure if he had upset her. He was so absorbed with watching her that he jumped when she spoke up again.
"We agreed to do this together, and you actually have a bigger part in this than I do."
'Not according to them,' his mind spoke up, and he found he agreed. But she wouldn't agree, so he stayed quiet.
"So, from now on, you are going to take ALL of your calls."
He opened his mouth to accept, and she cut him off. "Without hanging up on the crying ones. That'll only make them worse."
He really wanted to pout. But that would be unfair, so he didn't. Instead, he nodded in obedience, and she heaved a sigh. "Good. Then that's settled." Without another word, she moved into his room and settled on his lap, resting her head on his shoulder. Neo had his arms halfway around her when -
"Hey, Trinity!" Mouse yelled from his cubicle down the hall. "We've got a hysterical one on the line, here! I think you'd better hurry."
Trinity groaned, rose to her feet, and dashed off. Neo glanced surreptitiously at his phone, before following her. The "fans" would have to wait for a while.
And that was that.
Neo smiled slightly at the memory, his eyes flitting towards where Mouse was stationed. He couldn't see the young fighter, but he knew already that he had plenty of calls of his own. Those who had calmed down about Neo and Trinity's deaths had soon thought back to the others, and though the rest of the crew hadn't had much directed towards them in the first couple of days, now they had more than enough to handle. Mouse probably got the most, out of that, for reasons that Neo did not quite understand. But he HAD seen Mouse blush quite a few times while listening to a call, and respond quickly before hanging up. So he wasn't the only one having trouble with his callers.
One baffling thing, brought up by Switch during one of their breaks (that was another thing that confused Neo. How long exactly did they take breaks? Since there was no time, who knew how long they were away from the phones? And then he would silently curse the Oracle for making him think too much.), and that was the reoccurring comment about "fanfics".
Many of the callers talked about fanfics. About reading about them. They hadn't quite figured out what they were, as of yet, or how they had so much information about them, but they had ascertained that whatever they were, they were almost as helpful in calming the distraught fans as was the counseling service itself. So, they decided, fanfics were a good thing.
One thing was for certain, with all this attention the crew was getting, they certainly didn't feel dead.