Fandom: X-Men comics Disclaimer: Not mine. Rating: 18+ Violence, death.
Notes: Timey was talking about this David Bowie song with its inoccuous title and incongruous first line. I think I did what I wanted it to do. All mistakes are my own.
Set: Er, sometime during the seven years when Domino wasn't hanging out with Cable.

Seven Years In Tibet
by ALC Punk!

'Are you okay? You've been shot in the head.' - David Bowie


It started like every mission. Get the orders, the dossier, and the profile. Sometimes the details were more than enough to plot exactly where she needed to put herself.

One shot.

Sometimes, she had to do a little surveillance of her own. Possibly, some assassins would have objected. Others would have done their own reconnaissance regardless of the information provided. But Domino had a sort of sense about whether the info was good or not.

Sight down the scope.

On the missions where she had to do her own reconnaissance, she generally ended up finding a little more about her client. All her clients had something dirty about them. Victor always knew her preferences on that, and catered well. Jonathan sometimes tried to sneak in things he thought she should do. Things she didn't always agree with.

Finger on the trigger, delicate touch.

This was one of those times. The information he'd given her hadn't been enough, so she'd done her own digging. Pushed her luck just a little until she was laying on a rooftop staring down into a seemingly deserted monastery, just one thing out of order.

She heard the scrape of a shoe sole on slate tile.

Wind was whipping around her, dragging at her hair and skin. Without the tight-fitting black ensemble, she'd be a white-skinned wraith haunting the mountains of Tibet. Bringing death with every visit. Her target was a low-level monk, a man who was trafficking in pictures. Little children with horrific things done to them.

There was just one problem.

Bullet impacted the slate, and she rolled. Another bullet and another, and she was on her feet and running as slate shattered behind her.

He was already dead.

A bullet winged her left arm, but she ignored the pain as she jumped off one roof for the next, heading towards the rope-line she'd climbed up. Someone had removed it, which left her standing like a big target in the middle of the slate. She ran for the opposite edge and stared down for less than a second.

Domino threw herself off the roof.

Grizzly used to say that he'd tried to fly as a kid. He'd ended up with a broken arm, and three stitches in the back of his head. His mother had called him every name in the book then fed him a chocolate sundae.

She had no memories to tell her if she had tried the same thing as a child.

Four stories to fall, and the ground was flying up much too fast, but she twisted and the extra line and grapple flew out, snagging a piece of rock. Almost to the ground, the line drew taught, and she swung back up to apogee, easily making the ledge she'd aimed for.

Chips of rock pelted her as another bullet barely missed her head.

The body of her intended target had been spread-eagled in the courtyard, a pool of blood shimmering in the afternoon light. It was sticky with the flies beginning to swarm around the massive hole in the man's head.

It could have been her.

Up the rock, fingers and toes finding impossible holds until she was almost panting with exertion and adrenaline.

Shots seven through ten missed her.

Over the top and then she had to hope someone up there was smiling on her, because the donkey she rode in on had disappeared.

Two last shots, and she figured they needed to reload.

Just enough time to figure out where the other assassin was. Another shot tracked across the place she went over the wall, but she wasn't there anymore.

Guns were simple, knives were simpler still.

The assassin had to be new, she was less trained at instinctively providing the best cover for herself. No instant escape route (even in the open, Domino had been faster than a bullet). She didn't make sure she was protected on all sides. Too late, the young girl heard the scrape of boot heel on tile. Domino didn't flinch as knife grated against bone.

She kept the girl's rifle until she was out of the mountains.