-Of Sickness and Sunglasses-
A Psychonauts Ficlet by Digitaldreamer
What? You mean someone's actually reading this?
Er, I mean...hello all! My name is Digitaldreamer, and I'm a newly converted Psychonauts addict. Er, I guess. Anyway, after playing through the game I've found myself being attacked by entire armies of plot bunnies. Little buggers bite, too. Thus, in an attempt to pacify the soul-devouring creatures, I decided to try my hand at writing some Psychonauts fanfiction.
This is the result. Yes, I know the title is terrible, I apologize. Granted, I'm not the best writer, but I think it's alright for a first try at writing these characters. I really would have preferred to write something with Raz, since he's my favorite character, but this bunny hit me and wouldn't go away until I wrote it first. Ah well, I'll just have to write some Raz goodness later.
Right, so uh...reviews are greatly appreciated! Even if all you have to say is that you liked it, please review, I'd like to know if people actually read this thing or not...Oh, just a warning, but this fic hasn't been betaed, so I apologize sincerely for any typos.
Er...right, on with the fic!
Disclaimer: Does anyone even check these things anyway? Alright, alright, I don't own Psychonauts or any of it's characters. There, you happy?
The sound of the sneeze rang through the cold, metallic interior of Sasha Nien's secret lab, echoing against the stained-glass stairway stacked with boxes and papers. Books were piled neatly around the room, covering the chairs that, while spotlessly clean, had clearly not been used in ages. The Brain Tumbler at the center of all this hummed, some of it still internally working when not in use.
The owner of all these things currently stood in front of the dark red controls for the machine, long gloved fingers typing away furiously on one hand while the others reached up to rub at a nose tinged with pink. "Ach..." Sasha Nein muttered as he snatched a tissue from the black and white box near him. The German Psychonaut blew quickly into the tissue before throwing it into the nearby trash bin, which was half-filled with similar crumpled, used Kleenexes.
He had returned to his work only for a moment before he felt his nose tingle. "Ah...AH-CHOO!" Sasha reached up to cup his hands over his nose. "Damnit."
"Sasha? Are you down there, darling?" Milla's cheerful tone echoed through the lab.
Sasha paused a moment in wiping his nose, tensing. Milla was here? Normally Agent Nein didn't mind her so much, on the contrary some days she wasn't bad at all, save for her occasional sporadic attempts to brighten his lab up with her "style". But that woman had this innate ability to somehow show up whenever he was working, and it drove him up a wall. And then of course as soon as she showed up she'd start talking on and on while he was trying to work and she'd never go away and...oh, this was not good.
And of course, there was the fact that he was feeling slightly under the weather. There was no way in Hell she wasn't going to notice, he swore she had some sort of seventh sense about this sort of thing. Sasha remembered quite well the few other times he had gotten sick, they had burned a permanent dislike of chicken soup and all sorts of medications into his mind.
The German Psychonaut sighed, tossing away the used kleenex and trying to nudge the waste basket out of view with his toe. He hadn't managed to fool her before, but that didn't mean he couldn't try to act like there wasn't anything wrong. He brushed a strand of black hair out of his eyes and adjusted his sunglasses before looking back to the screen. The man let out a small, exasperated sigh before speaking. "Yes, Agent Vodello?" He asked in his usual monotone way of speaking.
Milla came floating down gently from above, silky chocolate brown hair flowing behind her as she landed, catlike, on her feet. "Sasha, darling, I think the--" She paused, brows furrowing, the ends of her mouth tugging into a concerned frown. "Are you feeling alright? You sound as if you are sick."
Well, that took all of three seconds. Sasha mused. How does she do that? Outwardly, he didn't even blink as he went back to typing. "I'm fine." He stated.
The Mental Mix frowned, eyes flitting over to the wastebasket next to the desk. "Is that so? Then what's with all these tissues, hm?" She asked, folding her arms and tapping one foot.
"Allergies." Sasha replied without skipping a beat.
You're sick, aren't you darling?" Milla asked, moving to his side
and peering up at him.
Sasha sighed as he turned to face her. "Agent Vodello, I am perfectly--" He was cut off by a loud sneeze that echoed through the entire lab. He gave a groan and rubbed at his nose before speaking again. "--fine."
Milla didn't even blink, she just glared at him.
The German Psychonaut let out an exasperated sigh. "It is just a small cold, it's nothing serious." He stated.
"You're paler than usual." Milla stated curtly.
"I'm fine. It's nothing to work yourself up over."
"Really. It will pass soon enough."
Another sigh. "Milla, please, I do not have time for this. I have to get this done or--" Sasha was cut off as the back of a deeply tanned hand was pressed against his forehead.
Sasha's eyes widened behind his sunglasses before he took a quick step back, brushing Milla's hand away. Sasha Nein was a very firm believer in keeping his personal space, he did not appreciate being touched. "Milla, I told you not to--"
"I thought so. You're definitely warm." Milla said as she pulled her glove back on, glancing over at Sasha. "You have a fever, darling."
The German Psychonaut stood there for a moment, still slightly tense. Finally his shoulders relaxed a bit and he brushed the strand of black hair away once again. "It's not a bad one, it will pass. I will rest later." With that Sasha made as if to move back to the Brain Tumbler controls. "But for now, I really need to get back to work."
"Oh no you don't." Milla said, moving between him and the machine. "You have a fever and you are going to get some rest now." She reached out place her hands on Sasha's shoulders and began to gently push the dark-haired man towards one of the red, oval-shaped lounge chairs in the lab. " If you don't you're going to get even sicker, darling."
Sasha glanced back over his shoulder at her. "But, Milla--"
"Don't you 'But Milla' me, young man!" Milla said with a small, playful smile, though there was concern in her eyes. "You need rest, sweetie. Now just lay down, alright?" With that she gently gave Sasha final push towards the chair.
He glanced back at her for a moment, then gave a defeated sigh and quickly moved the books and papers off of the chair. He supposed if it would make her stop the whole 'mother' routine, it would be alright. "Fine, fine." He muttered, pinching the bridge of his nose in an attempt to alleviate the pounding ache in his skull. "But as soon as I'm better I am going to finish that project." Wth that, he allowed himself to lay down.
Milla smiled, walking over to his side. "Good. Now you just lay back and rest, got that?" She said, reaching as if to take off the man's sunglasses.
Sasha, however, held up a hand to stop her. When she glanced at him questioningly he just shook his head. The brunette sighed, but then flashed a soft smile and moved back to give him his space. "Alright, I'm going to go get some cold medicine. You just stay here, okay darling?" She turned and began to walk away, pausing only to glance over her shoulder and wave a finger at him. "Don't you dare leave that spot or you'll be sorry young man!"
The 'young man' rolled his eyes and waved her off before settling back in the chair. Sure, this entire thing was a bit annoying, he really didn't have time to be sick...but it wasn't so bad. No one else had ever cared enough to bother to do this sort of thing for him...
When Milla returned, she found Sasha fast asleep in the chair. The Mental Minx felt a soft smile creeping over her face as she walked over, pausing at his side to gaze down at him. Sasha looked so different when he was asleep, so much more relaxed and at ease. He was much less stiff, his slow and even breathing causing his chest to rise and fall below the tan striped turtle-neck.
She reached down and removed Sasha's sunglasses with care, folding them and placing them on a small table near-by. He'd want them when he woke up, after all, they were his shield, his way of controlling and protecting himself against a harsh world. But for now, just for a little while...he was safe. It was okay to let things loose, if only for a little...
The brunette gazed down at Sasha's pale face, at the closed eyes whose color would always be hidden from her. She hoped to see them, someday, but that was unlikely. For Sasha to trust someone like that, to just throw away his control to anyone like that...it would never happen. It just wasn't Sasha.
Milla sighed, brushing that strand of black hair out of his face, it never seemed to never stay put. Then, before she could lose her nerve, she leaned down and planted a soft kiss against Sasha's head.
This task done, Milla stood up straight once more and turned away, the sound of her boots echoing throughout the lab. She flicked at the light switch to dim the lights high overhead, then made her way out of the lab, leaving the sleeping Sasha behind her.
He was never going to notice. She was never going to see his eyes. But as long as she got to be near him...as long as she was allowed little moments like these, as long as he needed her...
That was good enough.