Disclaimer: I own nothing of LFN.
...Home is where the heart is...
The alleyway was damp from the flooding rains that had passed through the area over the last week. Puddles filled holey shoes and left backpacks soaked when they fell after tripping. Neon lights blazed through the hazy fog, signaling bars and hairdressers and who knew what else. A sharp chill that went straight through even the warmest clothes kept consistent through the night.
Adjusting her backpack straps, Nikita groaned as her sock was drenched once again from a puddle she had failed to notice. Her misery was clouding her thoughts, and it was making her feel only worse as she searched for a place to lay for the night.
A window shattered not far behind her, gunshots searing through the thick night. With a sharp breath, her body fell hard against the wall, trying to remain concealed from whoever was causing the mischief tonight. Stealthily, she walked along until the alley stopped and a back street began. Here it was more populated by what was considered the shame of society. Dirty faces and rag clothed bodies searched for shelter from nature's wetness. It was the words bleakness and hopelessness defined.
A few men in their early twenties were rushing up the sidewalk, one running in to her hard enough to make her lose her balance, her back colliding with the cement. No one stopped to see if she was alright or not - no one ever did. No one cared. Just as these streets were the meaning of such horrid and pitiful of words, Nikita could be easily defined as the lonely teenager who was treated like everyone else around her - low as dirt.
Sirens blared angrily through the harsh silence. It was something she was used to by now, but even so, it still shook her soul and hastened her pace.
Hurrying in to an alleyway that she knew well, she was welcomed by a soft fire in a barrel below dirty cold hands and a few cans of food for those that had it. The group around this fire counted seven - the usual people she came to sit with when it was time to lay down her weary head. Yet these seven people that allowed her a spot among them would help a thief cut your throat before stopping them if they even had a hint that you might have a dollar or two on you. These weren't friends. There was no such thing as a friend. As a companion. Nothing more than strangers in an alley, being all alone together.
Nikita sat, ignoring the grumble in her stomach from not finding a meal for the night. Staring up at the high moon that marked another day that had gone by, she awaited for sleep to take her away from her hateful surroundings.
Nikita stared at the sky, watching as the full moon slowly made it's path through the velvet dark sky. As a sharp wind blew, she pulled her warm blanket around her shoulders. The air was heavy with the stench of the flooding storm that had just passed not long ago. Just the smell was enough to send her mind reeling back to more unpleasant times, making her blood run cold. Wanting to run from the feeling of emptiness that would fill her with these thoughts, she closed her french doors and hurried back to bed.
As soon as her head hit the pillow, a lazy arm draped itself around her middle, pulling her close, replacing the void in her soul with a secured one.
She kissed his hand just before a siren started to wail through Parisian streets. Even after all this time, after everything she's been put through over the last few years, that sound still made her flinch and sent a shiver run through her body.
Her mind started to whirl back to her dark past that always made her feel horrid throughout the rest of the week. But just as her eyes were growing wide with memory, Michael's arm pulled her closer.
"Are you alright?" Came his half asleep voice.
His voice in her ears had chased away her past, leaving her once again in bed, in her own safe, warm apartment, with the man she loved beside her. And these thoughts almost made her sure there was some kind of light at the end of this everlasting tunnel. For even though Section had dragged her along, trying to beat her in to being a perfect operative and was still continuing to try, in this moment, she was happy. At this moment, if she could pretend that this apartment and this early morning was the only thing that existed in life, as if it would never change.
For though her job was horrible, and though she was forced to be everything she knew she wasn't, some things that Section gave her, she wondered if she shouldn't be on her knees in thanks to them. They had given her a home free of the streets. Money to live comfortably. But the best of all - they took away her loneliness and had given her friends. She was dead to the outside world, but she was, for the first time, actually living inside their tall, unforgiving stern walls.
No, the revelation didn't make everything all better. It didn't make her heart feel alright for killing so many people, and it didn't allow her a peaceful sleep at the end of a grueling day, but it did give her something to live for. Something to keep pushing through the rough. Something to keep her head above the water.
Settling in position, she looked over her shoulder at Michael and grinned. For the first time, she felt like she was home.