Title: Fresh Wounds Amid Old Pains
Summary: Leoben decides that Kara needs a lesson. Warning: This work is dark and contains a scene with torture and rape.
Timeframe: Takes place after Exodus Pt 1 in Kara's experiences but (obviously) strays from canon in what occurs.
Rating: M for rape and torture
Disclaimer: No disrespect meant to the creators of Battlestar Galactica.
Notes: This work is dark and not very pleasant. Have I given enough warnings? Am somewhat nervous about posting this.
Kara noticed he was different. He put Kacey to bed with little in the way of laughter. It wasn't normal. Leoben liked to play with Kacey at her bedtime, get her riled up and then tell her to go to sleep. As if a child so wound up could settle down. She crossed her arms and shook her head. What had happened? Why the change? Was he messing with her? Or did the toaster have real mood swings just like humans?
Leoben had been distracted all evening, watching her more than usual, his eyes rarely leaving her save when he'd decided Kacey should go to bed. Kara had the strange feeling that he was regretting something, but what? She retreated to wash and dry the dishes from dinner. A nice, domestic chore that he enjoyed seeing her perform. It was also something to do to relieve the boredom of her evenings. The motions were repetitive, even soothing.
Leoben's voice was too low to hear the words. What was he telling Kacey? A story or was he just talking to her like Kara did? Gradually the sound of his voice faded away, silence descending. Kara worked in the silence, washing one dish, then the next, scrubbing the silverware and pans all in slow motions. He'd used a lot of pans and plates making dinner. It didn't matter if this task took her all night. She had the time.
With any luck, he would leave before she was done. Sometimes he did. Sometimes he left and she didn't know he was gone until she looked around the apartment. Small favors. Once the dishes were all washed, she began to dry them. As each thing was dried, she put it away, idly noting that several of the more deadly items were missing from the cabinets. She allowed an amused smile to curve her lips. Aww…Didn't he trust her anymore?
Finishing the last plate, she turned, discovering Leoben behind her. She hadn't heard him there. He stepped close, too close, one arm slipping about her waist. "Back off there, Slick." Raising her right hand, she placed it on his chest, giving him a shove. It wasn't much of a shove and didn't really move him at all. He hardly swayed.
Leoben grasped her forearm. His grip was firm but not hurting. Still, he said nothing, merely stared at her with an unreadable expression.
"Let go already." Kara tugged and as she tugged, she was overcome by the wrongness of the situation. The air between them had changed and if she was reading it right, it was for the worse. A shiver worked along her spine. "What?"
He took the dishtowel from her, set it aside. One finger raised, laid along his lips. "Sshhh. Not a word," he whispered, the hand holding her arm massaging. Embracing her again, he leaned in, ignoring her jerk backwards. When she had gone as far as she could go, he leaned in further. "I have to make you see," he whispered against her mouth.
Intent burned in his gaze and Kara felt his body tensing, strength coiling, that split-second notice she had that he was going to strike. She lashed out before he could, going for his eyes and missing, nails dragging down his cheek instead. His fingers tightened on her arm and then she was being turned, twisted, her arm behind her back and her body crashing into the wall with him slamming against her. Her arm was trapped between her back and the wall, his hand pressing.
All in seconds.
Something in her shoulder popped, agony so sharp that she couldn't even cry out as it took her over. Kara's eyes watered from it, her body jerking. Leoben didn't release her arm, keeping the pressure -- and the pain -- constant.
"Scream, Kara. You know you want to, but softly, hmm? Wouldn't want to wake Kacey and have her see mommy and daddy getting busy now would we? It might scar her for life."
Her free hand grasped his shirt, fingers struggling to work under the two shirts he wore to reach skin. Hurt him back. Have to hurt him back. The layers refused to cooperate, tangling and leaving her holding only cloth. She craved the feel of his skin tearing under her touch and the warmth of blood flowing over her fingers. She thought it would be pleasant to rip out his guts with her bare hands. "In your dreams," she gritted through clenched teeth, words tapering off into pants as she tried not to give him the satisfaction of a scream.
Kacey didn't need to see any of this.
"Frequently." His teeth flashed for an instant in more of a snarl than a smile, a predatory baring of teeth. That's what he was, a predator stalking her everywhere she went in this apartment. "I dream of you every night."
"Psycho," she spat. "Freak."
"We are what God makes us." Leoben added pressure to her arm.
Her shoulder felt stretched now, almost separate from her body. Nausea crawled about her belly and she wondered how upset he'd be if she tossed her dinner all over him. He'd taken such care to cook the meat the way she liked it….
"I don't want to hurt you, Kara, because I do love you, but this is to teach you a crucial lesson. We all need lessons from time to time. You're no different. This pain you're feeling…. It's aching and so blinding you can barely think."
Her glance strayed over his shoulder. Please, let Kacey still sleep!
"You and I both know you're no stranger to pain. You wallow in your pains, alternately wanting to end them and afraid to lose them."
Kara moaned, shaking her head. She kicked at his legs in frustration, unable to hook a foot and topple them. Unable to stop him. It occurred to her that every time she'd managed to hurt him, to kill him, it was because he had left himself open. He'd let her, hadn't he?
"Who would you be without the pain, Kara? We are here together on the precipice of change, dancing along the edge of that cliff pain, wanting to end it one way or another. Why fight it? Why fight me? You know there will be pleasure simply from the lessening of the pain."
With a twist of his hands, he realigned her shoulder. There was another pop and only his body pressing her to the wall kept her standing. His mouth swooped down on hers, swallowing her whimpers of relief. She couldn't avoid the contact, hated having to endure it.
Pulling back, he kissed her temple. "Feel it? Relief. Pleasure. The complete release of that pain into the sea of the past." His head lowered, lips caressing her injured shoulder. "There's a little numbness growing…" He gasped, breath hot, lean body moving, his hips grinding against hers. "…but it only heightens the relief. The pain of the moment is gone, Kara."
Horror blossomed with each suggestive motion he made. This was exciting him. Kara's upper lip curled. The sudden idea that she should have somehow remembered that fact surfaced. He was getting off on her pain and helplessness. It fed him. "You're a sick frakking toaster."
"So you tell me." Abruptly, he stepped back, releasing her from his grasp.
Kara's legs would not hold her and without him anchoring her, she slid to the floor, left hand moving to cup her right shoulder. She trembled, hate coloring her voice. "I'm going to kill you."
"I look forward to your next attempt." Stripping off the loose shirt, he tossed it aside, then removed the second shirt. "You're a delightfully inventive woman."
It always chilled her how very flat his gaze could be. "Lesson over, teacher? Is class dismissed?"
Mommy and Daddy getting busy, he'd said.
He laughed and crouched down at her feet. "In good time." Blood from the cut she'd inflicted was smeared along his cheek. Too bad she'd missed his eyes. Feeling one or both eyeballs pop like ripe grapes would have been satisfying, more so than that simple scratch.
Kara wondered when she'd become so violent in her desires.
Stretching out his hands, he grasped her ankles. "Kick me," he said in a pleasant tone, "and the pain from your shoulder will be a tickle compared to what I'll do to your legs."
"Liar." She narrowed her eyes, debating if one single kick was worth…what? What would he do? He'd hurt her now and then, rough her up the way he wanted in the course of supposed 'lessons', but nothing that left permanent marks. Each wound healed without a scar to show it on her body.
Her soul however. That was another matter. Kara didn't know how many scars a soul could handle, but was somewhat afraid he'd make her find out. He'd given her many soul-scars.
"Try me. Bodies heal, Kara, and everything I do will heal eventually." With a tug, she was on her back. Before she could come back with a comment or formulate some plan of action, he slanted a thoughtful glance at her, his fist striking down on her abdomen right in the solar plexis, crushing the breath, the very knowledge of how to breathe, from her.
It felt as though she'd fallen from a distance and landed flat on her back. No air went into her lungs. Black spots swam on her vision, his image tilting sharply. Her nausea increased, the possibility of losing her dinner becoming a real probability.
Gods! Help me!
"This lesson is not over until I tell you it is." He straddled her body, leaning down until his lips could brush hers. "We're moving on. You remember this part, I trust? It hasn't been that long."
Just when she thought she'd pass out from lack of oxygen, her body remembered the process of breathing. Blessed air entered her lungs and she threw her head back, drinking in that air, exposing her throat, but she didn't care.
His hand closed over her throat, squeezing and then he was upon her like an animal, all strength and aggression, working her clothes from her and when they wouldn't give, he tore them. A feral light claimed his eyes, madness glinting. It would remain until he was finished with her. It always remained until he looked down at her -- on the floor, couch, bed, wherever -- and then he'd begin babbling about love again and how much he loved her.
Yes, she did remember this part after all.
The rending sound of her clothes tearing was just one more thing that would haunt her later, a new pain to replace old ones. She knew her struggles were ineffectual, yet still she tried. Had to fight him until she couldn't do it anymore.
She bit her lip, blanking her mind during his assault. It wasn't happening. It never happened. Leave it all behind and visit a nice place. Kara held her breath, occasionally grimacing as she consciously felt him on her. The press of him inside her, the sensation of his hands and lips on her breasts. In her mind, she was back on Galactica and this was nothing more than a nightmare, conjured up in the darkest hours of the night. It wasn't real. It didn't happen.
But it did.
She didn't realize he'd finished with her until the cool air of the apartment brought goosebumps onto her skin. Kara stared up at him. Numbness worked through her, encased her and she let herself drown in it.
"Next time it'll be better," he said, fastening his pants and reaching for his shirts.
She remembered now that he said that every time. He claimed to love her, but there was no love in anything he did to her. Did he have any idea what sex with love felt like? No, how could he? He wasn't human and therefore couldn't feel love. "There won't be a next time."
Dressed, he knelt beside her, gently touching her shoulder. "Shall we bet on that?"
There would be a next time, and a next and so forth, despite her hopes to the contrary. He would get himself worked up over her and someday in the future, after her shoulder had healed, he'd feel the need for another 'lesson'. Those wants he suppressed while playing the nice guy would get the better of him. Kara almost wondered what he'd use as the basis for the next 'lesson' and decided she didn't give a damn.
He 'tsked', in 'normal mode', that caring, man-of-your-dreams act. He still tried to convince her he cared. "We'd better get this looked at. You go wash up and get dressed. I'll wake Kacey."
She slept in the bed that night, the one upstairs that Leoben wanted her to share with him, more because the couch hurt her shoulder than from a wanting of lying beside him. She drifted on a sea of drugs that kept the soreness of her shoulder at bay and giggled when she told him that Gaius Baltar was a better lay than he'd ever be, then giggled louder at the annoyance that crossed his face. It didn't escape her that she could hear her own hysteria.
"Maybe so," he tucked the covers about her, careful not to touch her shoulder, "but I'm willing to bet I'm far more memorable." With a kiss to her cheek, he turned out the lights.
In the morning, Kara found a pile of new clothes set on the end of the bed. She struggled into them, crying out a little when drawing on the shirt caused a ripple of pain in her shoulder. She sat still, toying with the hem of the shirt a long while before fumbling with the buttons down the front. There was no way she could wear her usual clothes. As she finished the final button, she stopped, taking a closer look at the shirt.
It was one of his.
"Frak," she whispered, but as it was too much trouble to remove it now that she'd spent what felt like half the morning trying to put it on, Kara decided to leave it. More time was spent trying to draw on and fasten her pants and once that was accomplished, Kara had abandoned the idea of shoes and socks. Moving hurt too much.
Padding down the stair, she saw Leoben and Kacey at the table. He had her on his lap and was singing to her as he made a stuffed animal dance on the table. She stared. Such a nice, normal domestic scene.
He paused, looking over at her. "Well there you are. I was beginning to think I'd have to come wake you. Want some breakfast? We waited for you." There was that reptilian coldness in his eyes again, just a machine going through the motions. He watched and waited, like he always did. Constantly watching. Constantly waiting. Didn't he ever get tired of it? With a blink, that coldness was gone, concern replacing it.
Kara let a small sigh slip from her. Another day in captivity. No different from others she'd endured. "No. I'll eat later."
"Nonsense." Leoben set Kacey down on the floor and handed her the toy. "You have to keep your strength up." He came to her, glance flicking to her shoulder and back. "Your medication is in the bathroom. Take it. You'll feel better. Breakfast in ten."
She took the medication and sat on the couch, watching Kacey play on the floor. There was a little numbness growing inside her and she leaned her head back, turning her regard to the ceiling. As she sat, she boxed away the events of the previous day in her mind and set them on a shelf with all of the others before locking that shelf and swearing she'd never let him add another memory to them. It didn't happen and never had. He'd hurt her shoulder, that was all. Maybe some day when Galactica returned and she was free…. Maybe then she'd remember those things she made herself forget and allow herself to contemplate them. Maybe.
For now however, it was best to make herself forget. She couldn't function if she dwelled on it. She'd go honestly, frakking insane.
Her mind worked an inventory of all of the little things in the apartment and how she could kill him a sixth time. She'd have to plan better so as not to scar Kacey for life. No kid should see what she was going to do to Leoben.
"Set the table for me, Kara," he called out.
"Sure." She took great care in the placing of the silverware, but she was off in her own little world.