Pardon, please! I posted this first chapter in a rush, so I didn't give credit where credit was due. This is a challenge fic, that I have Lolita tides to thank for. The consept of a Waltivia (thanks for the amazing contraction, btw) still has yet to be explored, and I'm having fun delving into the unknown.
*I do not own Fringe, nor any of the totally unrealistic pairings it inspires.^ ^
1. Insulin shock
He woke up because the sun was so hot on his chest. He only vaguely registered the amplification of the heat through the tempered glass before he let out a frightened exclamation at the sudden jostling of the vehicle, sending the articles in the cab clattering about loudly. Walter removed his parka from his face, pushing sweat away from his eyebrows with his fingertips as he sat up, his gaze blurred and thoughts hazy. But that may have been a come-down from the narcotics.
Peter glanced back at him as Walter rested his forearms on the back of his son's seat, letting out a tired sigh, "Sorry," Peter said with a small smile, "I wanted to let you sleep a bit more. But the road out here is horrible."
Walter said nothing, resting his forehead on Peter's shoulder in a lazy motion to wipe away the sweat on his brow in a joking manner. The attempt was far too melancholy- everything he did was horribly sad, these days, his assistant sometimes looked as if she were about to cry, when she watched him- and it registered only as a gentle nuzzle.
Peter smiled and sighed, ruffling his father's slightly damp hair, "You're tired, Walter." He did not scold him in any way, for his sudden closeness. He knew that it would have been insult to injury, "Go back to sleep."
Walter shook his head, "I'm parched."
"Oh." Peter looked away from the road to grab a bottle of water from the off drivers' seat. He passed it over his shoulder as Walter sat up, accepting it from him, "Sorry, it isn't cold. I'll get you a soda or something when we finish."
Walter was drinking, a small trickle of water escaping the corner of his mouth to roll down his chin and land on his collar. He finished and capped the bottle, rubbing his face on his sleeve and settling back in the seat to stare unseeingly out at the passing scenery.
Peter watched him in the rearview mirror, when he could, "Walter, are you sure about this?" he asked at last.
"Yes," Walter answered immediately, if even a bit coldly.
Peter sighed again, and they pulled past the ivy-cluttered gates of the cemetery, the junk in the back of the car jumbling around to land in Walter's lap. They consisted of a few old magazines, a pair of thick, leather soldering gloves, and an old, broken alarm clock.
Sunlight reflected from the puddles of rainwater and the clean, polished slabs of marble, and Walter squinted in the sudden glares, "The sun came out, today," he said softly.
"Yeah. The news said something about it being the eye of the storm, some crap like that."
"Huh." Walter rubbed his bottom lip with his sleeve, trying to think of nothing at all.
The storm had started when she'd given up. Or perhaps when he had decided to accept it.
"Is Peter here?" Olivia asked, standing in the doorway. Her hair was darker and clung to her black leather jacket, in the rain. She did not look well.
"No, I'm sorry," Walter had replied courteously, "He's out. With that one girl. He sees more and more of her, lately. Did you need him?"
"No," Olivia said without special emphasis. They stood in silence for a few moments.
"Won't you come in?" Walter asked, nodding his head back toward the room.
"Why are you naked?"
He retrieved her a towel for her hair and donned pajamas solely for her comfort. Olivia did not comment, even as he brought out chips and salsa. These were mainly for his own use, rather than that of his very silent guest, whom he watched quietly as he ate.
Olivia reached up to adjust the towel over her head, and Walter's brows arched sharply at the stains of blood on the sleeves of her shirt. She spotted his concerned gaze and snapped, "What? Are you going to lecture me, too?"
"You did it wrong," Walter replied, tilting the jar to get at the tomatoes.
"Horizontal. Criss-cross. Whatever you want to call it, it's wrong. Slit yourself vertically- that's the ticket. Chip?" She'd burst into tears at his offer, and he'd retracted, alarmed, "Ah- no- um, no chips. I get it."
Her face was hidden in her hands as she shook mutely.
At length, Walter had leaned across the low table between them, gently lifting the towel away and stroking her disheveled hair. "They'll heal. The scars will even fade. But the guilt won't."
"My niece found me," Olivia said quietly, her face still in her hands, "before I even had a chance to hope."
Walter sighed. Hot tears escaped the gaps of her fingers, and she sniffed. "Are you upset because you tried, or because it didn't work?" he asked quietly.
"It's your fault, you bastard!" she suddenly exploded, "You and your goddamn science fair projects! I didn't want any of this- I don't even know if my life is mine, anymore! All I've done, all I've achieved, is it mine, or some fucking plan you and Bell dreamt up while you were high?!"
Walter was quiet. His face hinted no emotion, even as she glared at him, her eyes red and savage. Unnerved at his impassive response, she went off again, "Why do you get to forget?! You don't even know how much of a bastard you are!"
"Is this the first time you've tried to kill yourself?" Walter asked calmly.
Olivia looked suddenly frightened, possibly of the prospect that he knew something she did not.
"I see." Walter suddenly smiled fondly, rising, "I'll make hot chocolate."
"To celebrate, of course."
"You're crazy, Walter. Fucking crazy. I think I deserve to hate you."
"And I deserve to hate myself just as you hate yourself, agent Dunham," he murmured.
"Am I crazy?"
Walter grinned, "What do the voices tell you?"
"Fuck you," Olivia hissed.
Walter bowed low.