By Ada Adore
Yes, your eyes do not deceive you. I'm back. This is an Ada/Leon story I've been working on for a while now and it's sort of experimental and angsty, but there's plenty of action and romance too. Each chapter begins with a small prologue set in a motel where Leon and Ada are spending the night. These sections are set months after the start of the main story itself but their relevance will become clear nearer the end of the story, so don't worry too much about them now.
The story is set immediately after RE4. Ada has returned home from Spain and is contemplating her new life as a double agent working for The Organisation and spying on Wesker. The whole story is from Ada's point of view as she tries to make sense of her new world. It's rated T for some adult content but it's nothing too explicit or wierd. Promise!
It's about three times longer than Hope and I'll be downloading a new chapter every week or so. Thanks again to my beta reader and all who read this. I love reviews by the way- they're my chocolate! Feed me please :-)
Chapter One- Timeless
'The timeless in you is aware of life's timelessness; and it knows that yesterday is but today's memory and tomorrow is today's dream,'
3.36am Riverside Motel, Las Vegas
It's early morning when you wake again, your body humming with tender aches and powerful satisfaction. Perhaps you should leave now, with the memory still intact and not tainted by the inevitable goodbye and the agony of loss that you'll both have to face two months from now. Maybe. It would be the wisest thing to do. But you don't move from that spot, in fact you even grasp the pillow tightly in your hand.
Your eyes part the darkness, like fingers slipping through fabric, and trace the lines of his jaw as he slumbers beside you. The neon lights blink through the blinds of the room flicking gaudy shades of red and blue onto the grubby white sheets. Your hand slides closer to his face to catch the warmth of his life breath on your fingertips.
'Are you leaving?'
You feel a jolt tumble down your spine when he shatters the silence around you. His eyes are tightly lidded and you wonder for a moment if he is still fast asleep and if you have just imagined his voice. But the warm hand that cups your thigh beneath the sheets silences all thoughts completely.
'No,' you reply, and for once you truly mean it.
His eyes are still shut and you wonder how long he has been awake, relishing the weight of your body half-flung over his.
'How did you know I was awake?' you whisper.
'Your breathing patterns,' he murmurs, 'Plus you snore a little when you're asleep.'
'I do not snore!' you exclaim with half-hearted indignation.
He laughs, the sound rolling around you like an embrace, 'Yeah, you do. Just softly though. It's cute. What time is it?'
You shift to your side as gently as possible, feeling your sore muscles uncoil, expelling the pain like a twisting cloth shedding water. You force yourself not to cry out and try to gather your errant thoughts together as you squint at the luminous figures on the clock. The dull ache of your limbs usually acts as the perfect timepiece, its relentless ticking torturing you. Except when you're here with him. Time doesn't exist here; love is a vacuum.
'It doesn't matter,' you whisper, more to yourself than to him.
Leon opens his eyes. He understands. His expression is strong and collected as he reaches for you and you're timeless once again.
November 27th 2004, 11.52pm: Umbrella European HQ- Somewhere in France
It's been twenty-four hours, thirty-eight minutes and eleven seconds since you were extracted from that island in Spain and taken to a nearby base to recover, report and soak the bruises on your back.
You usually walked away from your…excursions relatively unscathed but this time you had had more than a mission brief to contend with. But it had all worked out in the end, with a little detour here and there.
Wesker had barely looked at you when you had handed him the sample case but his expression had assumed a mask of pensive wonder at the sight of his new toy and though he had smiled and, like always, deliberately brushed your hair from your forehead (for everything he does is deliberate) you had felt a sick shiver of uncertainty in the pit of your stomach. There was something wrong here.
Nevertheless, you learn that the meandering halls of the compound smell the same and your quarters are exactly how you left them- tightly folded sheets, Tolstoy by your bedside and a gun under your pillow. The temporary base hums with activity and a batch of clever but bland scientist will soon arrive to be absorbed into the faceless mass of this new Umbrella, just as others had done so before you had left. Quarantine was over and it was time to head back to America. Dinner was at eight as always and your flight home was at three am as ordered. You pace across the carpet letting your feet sink into the coarse fabric and inspect every ornament, every timepiece and every utility for the source of that unshakable but tender anxiety. Antique clocks, gilded with tastefully burnished metal blink back impassively at you, innocent, silent, still, clean and cold.
And it's then you realise that the only thing that's changed is you. For the first time in over six years you're not working for Albert Wesker, or for yourself. But for them. The Organisation. There was no going back now; this was no longer an idea or an option. There was nothing to fear but change.
So you let yourself relax for a second and remove your black suede heals with a well-trained kick. You ignore the phone the first time it rings, just as Wesker always expects you to, and bend slowly over the porcelain bathtub to reach the taps and wrench them clockwise. But you don't need a bath. You need a shower. You need to be overwhelmed by each pounding wave of water till your aches, your pains and those thoughts of Leon, the sight of him burned onto the inside of your eyelids is dissolved. Instead you dwell on the familiar. The craft of denial you'd honed since childhood. You'll do the opposite of what you want to do just to prove to those around you that you can, that you're not so fragile that you'd shatter if your desires weren't met. 'Yes' made you happy, but 'no' made you stronger. 'Need' was a weakness and 'want' was an option.
'You don't need much do you Ada?'
'Oh I need plenty Albert, just not anything you can give me.'
'So you don't want this job?'
Your eyes had closed for a moment and your chest had slowly swelled with air, 'What I need and what I want are two completely different things.'
Your hands are shaking as you remember that transaction. It's tempting to let them stay that way, to let them absorb the pain, to explore the feeling more closely and to indulge your morbid curiosity. But you take pity on the body you no longer recognise. You reach into your pitifully empty duffle bag and pull out a small plastic bottle. It rattles in your hand and you cringe at the sound. The instructions say no more than two a day but you know that's a lie. Or at least you hope it's a lie. You can't remember anymore. The pills are red and black, Albert's idea of a joke you suppose, and you choke them down without water.
While the bath fills, you wander aimlessly to your television and turn it on. For the benefit of the camera you know is hidden in the Monet beside the cabinet you affect a perfect pose of indifference as you flick slowly from channel to channel. It's minutes before you find your mark.
'Today at ten fifteen President Graham announced the safe return of Ashley Graham, his youngest daughter, from an ordeal White House representatives described as 'harrowing'. Though the White House had kept Ashley's abduction a well guarded secret for several weeks after her capture, a source leaked the story to a major Washington news publication three days ago. An official statement has revealed that Ashley Graham's abduction was the work of a Middle Eastern terrorist network under the direct control of Al Qaeda. President Graham encouraged the people of America to remain vigilant in the face of such threats and praised the bravery and loyalty of his Special Service agents.'
Your lips curl into a smile and you wonder how Leon reacted to the President's lies and of his conjuring a political campaign from his own daughter's nightmare. Or if he had even reacted at all. Lies and corruption had practically been your comfort zone for years until you had met him, but he had been so green, so open then. And for a split second you're back there with him, waking again to a torn dress, a wound on you side and those eyes so earnest and worried above you. You've opened the floodgates. Now you wonder how much he's changed and how much he has stayed the same. You don't just want to know but you need to know to be able to sleep at night without replaying every last minute of the past six years in your mind.
Your favourite minutes are conveniently stored on several videotapes- the surveillance tapes Wesker had had made of Leon on and off during the years following the old Umbrella's demise. You had managed to sneak a look. Not exactly Emmy award winning footage but it was educational. You now know that Leon helps his landlady take out her garbage several times a week, that he likes to jog in the rain, that he attracts blondes but prefers brunets and that he almost always returns home alone.
However this time he had found his way home with the girl, just as you had unbreakable faith that he would. Now you can see him on the small TV screen, black leather jacket and steely, unwavering gaze as he expertly steers Ashley to their car. Not so green and open anymore and you can't help but think that you were a part of that transformation. But you can't find it in yourself to feel guilty. What the caterpillar calls the end of the world, the master calls a butterfly, isn't that what Bach said? Leon's image drifts in and out of the frame as the news cameras frantically try to get a glimpse of the rescued girl and you lose yourself in him, in need and in weakness until your bath overflows. As you rush to rip the plug from the depths of the tub you realise that everything changed six years ago, but you'd been too stubborn and too confident to notice.
You decide to take a shower instead.
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