Written for humanbeldot's alphabetical OTP challenge, letter 'B'

Title :Blind (though in the end, it didn' fit very well.)

Pairing: Neo/Trinity

Format: Oneshot

Setting: the Logo's medic room, about ten minutes after Trinity first saw Neo blind.

Well, this one had a major rewrite, and a lot of the original fic set in Zion had to be cut out. Nonetheless, I think I like it better this way. Great thanks to humanbeldot, who took her time to beta the original version despite not being into the fandom. I didn't ask anyone to beta this one after the rewrite, so if it looks cranky on some parts it's not her fault. I'll just trust that my English will do. Hopefully this one will be more into character than my last fic, too)

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Blind

She stood beside him, one hand holding his during the entire procedure of cleaning off dried blood and burnt skin. Every now and then a sudden gasp and a tight squeeze of her palm gossiped about the agony he was put through. It was a painful procedure, but it had to be done to avoid infections. Leaning over Neo's scorched face, Trinity sighed and bit her lip with even intervals while surveying the area for living tissue. She had assisted ship medics a few times before in similar operations, but never imagined she once would have to perform this kind of surgery on her own lover.

The worst mess was where Neo's left eye used to be. Once it was wiped clean, it just looked worse than before. Picking out a compress and a bottle of rectified alcohol from the medical cabinet, she sterilized and covered up the open cuts before moving to work on the remains of the right eye. Continuing her work under concentrated silence, she kept herself preoccupied with the task to avoid getting distracted by thoughts of the pain her lover was in.

Besides the sound of Neo grinding his teeth as another flake of dead tissue was removed, the only thing breaking the silence for a long time was the steady dripping of water from the slowly thawing ice pack Trinity had prepared. Scooping it up to press it against the area she was working on, she accidentally startled Neo who hadn't been able to predict the shock of cold against his aching brow. Quickly putting a hand to his forehead, she wordlessly calmed him.

''I couldn't find any painkillers, so I'm using ice to cool off the area. Some of the damaged parts should be cleaned up by scalpel.'' God. It hurt to say that.

Neo gulped nearly inaudibly at the last word, knowing it could possibly mean more pain, but nodded. ''I trust you.''

He didn't need to tell her. During one of the first times they had met in person, she had asked him to trust her. And he came to do so. It hadn't been said aloud until now, but his actions had always showed it. Now, when they were heading for a certain death, she got the odd feeling the loop was about to close as he vocally confirmed what she already had known their entire time together: he trusted her unfalteringly.

After a few minutes she slowly removed the icepack again. Not wanting to look at the crimson stains in the fabric longer than avoidable, she quickly discarded it onto the metal tray beside the ship's surgery table. Looking back, she leant down to study the right side of Neo's face, a small scalpel firmly pinched in her hand as she ordered him to stay as still as possible."I think the ice cooled off the surrounding areas enough, so tell me if it still hurts. It could be living tissue beneath."Neo made a slight nod before laying his head back against the metal table, Trinity's palm once again covering his brow to help him keep still.

Quietly she let the scalpel get to work. It didn't hurt, but Neo still found it unpleasant in an odd numb way. It felt like an eternity had passed before he registered the slight plink of metal as the sharp tool was put back in it's tray of disinfecting liquid. Next thing he felt was wet cloth against his face as Trinity wiped off the remaining bloodstains, and the numbing cold seeped away from his face as the last clots of burnt and melted skin were removed. Standing back a moment, Trinity grabbed hold of a rag she had found in the medical cabinet and urged Neo to sit up. Tying it over the place where his beautiful brown eyes once had been, she felt an irrelevant sting of guilt, the kind one might feel when closing the door on someone to leave them in a dark prison cell.

Emptying the ice bucket into a nearby sink, she returned to Neo's side. He had let himself slump back to the metal table, tired from pain and stress and grateful that it was over. A soft prod on his shoulder alerted him, and he turned his head sideways.

"How are you feeling?" Trinity was leaning over him, he could feel small puffs of her warm breath on his ear. Reaching up, he slowly stroked his hand through her silky black hair, pulling her a bit closer.

"Tired" he yawned quietly. "And you?"

"It's been tough so far. We should get going while we still have the time.''

Neo nodded at that before momentarily growing quiet."Trin, does my eyes look very…strange… to you now?" He felt ridiculous for being this concerned about lost eyesight when Zion probably was on fire by now- but it was still important to him to know Trinity didn't feel disturbed by the sight of him. He'd rather put a bag over his head to hide it from view than put any more psychical stress on Trinity than she already was under, even if she was the strongest person he ever had met.

A moment in silence passed before he felt her arm curl around his shoulders - despite the tender move he could sense concern in the action.

'"Neo…Not the least. It'd be idiotic to expect someone to embark on a journey like this and come back in better shape than at the departure. After this many years I've learnt that and how to deal with it, even if it still makes me sad when shit happens.''

Putting one hand beneath his chin, she directed his face toward hers, though he couldn't see it.

''Of course I'm worried about how you will manage in 01 without eyesight. But thinking about what could've happened, I'm grateful you survived at all. That you are alive. Knowing that gives me strength to deal with anything.''

Neo's expression brightened slowly at this, followed by a red stain on his cheeks. ''Thanks.'' He reached up to grasp the hand she was resting on his shoulder and held it firmly in his own.

Trinity tried to smile and rejoice in the moment, but it still felt as if something was holding her back. An unyielding feeling in her bones that their time together was coming to a close today. That she or Neo, or both, would die.

Live. She had to live now. Get up, Trinity, and LIVE. Neo needs you to.

Leaning down, she took hold of his other hand and kissed him deeply, the flicker of life within her blazing up to a wildfire as she wordlessly ensured Neo that she loved , trusted and supported him with her full being. Tensing a moment before relaxing into the sweet sensation, Neo leant in to Trinity's kiss. The incredible warmth jumping from her to him as he did so surprised him, and he could've sworn he saw the outlines of her aura on the dark field of his vision. His chest was rising heavily against hers at the time she pulled back, their unison breathing heavy from the intensive moment. They stayed quiet for a long while with their foreheads connected, before Trinity stood up.

''Let's get going'' she said, hardly believing she was urging them to move toward what was laying ahead of them. What lay ahead of Neo.

But if everything was to go down in flames she would, rather than dwelling around here to no use and draw out on what would come, deal with it right ahead.

For Neo.

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I hope you like it, that's all I've got to say. And once again, a really lame cliche ending! Was planning to use a specific idiom for the title and ending, but it showed out to have quite the opposite meaning to what i thought it meant ; And this way, it does at least re-establish the primary purpose of the fanfic: the love. )