A/N: First fanfic, so be gentle. Reviews very welcome.
It's been nearly three weeks since Cassidy almost destroyed the Trager family. Life in the Trager home is slowly returning to normal. Jessi awoke with a start and began her usual morning routine. After her morning run was finished she showered, got dressed and headed for the kitchen.
Nicole was making breakfast and looked at her adopted daughter with concern upon seeing Jessi's uneasiness. "Trouble sleeping?" After a terse nod from Jessi she quickly added "Do you want to talk about it? You've been distant lately."
Jessi studied Nicole thinking "I've been trying to hack a file from Latnok but I haven't been able to yet and that bothers me. No, you'll only worry about it." Finally saying "No, Nicole, I'm fine, just going to check on how Kyle is doing." As Jessi leaves the kitchen she flashes a small smile at Nicole as proof she is okay.
"I need to tell Kyle about this file, the encryption is too difficult." Jessi thinks to herself as she walks to Kyle's room. As she was about to knock on Kyle's door, Jessi was nearly overwhelmed by the waves of raw emotion coming from Kyle's room. "What is going on in there," she wondered as she took a breath to steady herself and entered Kyle's room.
When Jessi looked at Kyle in his tub she was hit with a new wave of anguish and pain, this time her own. Kyle was unconscious, his skin several shades paler than usual, beads of sweat were on his face. "He looks like a zombie from one of Josh's movies." she thought to distract herself. "Kyle." Her voice almost a whisper "Kyle...Kyle!" Her voice shaking with emotion. When she saw that there was no response she reached out to touch his shoulder.
In the kitchen Nicole has been joined by Stephen, Lori and Josh. "Where is Jessi? She is usually already staking her claim on the best food by now." Lori asked her mother with a sardonic tone .
"She went to check on Kyle a second ago." Nicole responded trying to hide her smile at the comment.
"Kyle rejoined the living yet?" Josh sarcastically asks his parents. At their reproving glances Josh retorts "What he's been holed up in his room for almost a week. He hasn't been like this since Amanda dumped him, just saying."
Stephen starts to admonish his son "Josh I ca-" when he is interrupted by the sound of screaming from Kyle's room.
"NICOLE!!!!" The Tragers look at each other and quickly run to Kyle's room, each with an identical look of concern.
When they see the state Kyle is in their looks of concern immediately become that of shock and worry. "What's happening?" Lori asked as tears roll down her cheeks.
"Yeah, what's wrong with him?" Josh quickly added as guilt from his earlier comment stank in.
"I...I've never seen anything like this before, Jessi?" Stephen queried in a tone only heard in a parent afraid for their child's safety.
"I don't know!!!" Jessi frantically shot back. "I came to check on him and I found him like this. He didn't respond to me and his body temperature is at 103º and it's still climbing. I tried to heal him but nothing happened, I don't know what to do."
Nicole found her voice and said "I do, I've seen these symptoms before. When Jessi found out about Sarah, she had very similar symptoms."
"I don't...remember that. But how did I recover?" Jessi pleaded with Nicole
"All I know is that I was going to call for help, but Kyle said he was going to try to use your connection to enter your mind. After a few minutes you recovered."
"Okay, I have to try...I can't lose him!" Jessi exclaimed with unrestrained emotion.
"Jessi, hurry please." the Tragers said almost at once. Jessi concentrated on the connection as she had in the past and entered Kyle's subconscious.
Almost immediately after entering Kyle's mind Jessi was bombarded with memories of Kyle and Amanda, but before she could break the connection a new set of memories were thrust upon her. Only this time they were memories of her and Kyle.
The unexpectedness of these memories caused her to lose her focus and exit Kyle's mind gasping in shock.
"Jessi, what happened?" Nicole asked her voice full of concern.
"I was in Kyle's mind and he was remembering all these moments he had with Amanda." Jessi replied still partially in shock.
"Oh, Jessi I don't think-" Nicole and Lori started to say when Jessi cut them off "...and then he was remembering moments he had with me." while turning back to Kyle so no one would see that she is blushing.
"I'm going to try again." Jessi said to the family, and reentered Kyle's mind. After pushing through the memories of Amanda and herself, Jessi found herself sitting with Kyle in their booth at JP's Diner.
"Kyle." Jessi said in the most calming tone she could. Kyle looked at her with confusion clear on his face "Jessi, what are you doing here?" He asked not quite sure if it really was her.
"There is something wrong with you. Nicole said you did this for me when..." she said unable to finish .
"Well I don't want you here, you should have asked first." Kyle reprimanded her in a harsher tone than he intended.
"Your temperature is 103º and rising, I had to go into your memories. I didn't have time to ask permission" she replied with a frustrated huff.
Kyle studied her and seeing that she didn't mean any harm and the genuine concern in her eyes, he felt a twinge of guilt for lashing out at her. "She really is just trying to help me." Saying finally I'm sorry Jessi. I know your just trying to help, but I was-" Kyle sighed in defeat knowing that not only would he have relive the memory his body was trying to burn away like an infection, but also show Jessi the truth. "Jessi I'll show you what really happened the night Cassidy broke in." Kyle said glumly.
"What does he mean, what really happened?" Jessi wondered before realizing she has never heard Kyle speak with such a despondent tone before. "What really happened?" She questioned with a slight arch of her eyebrow. "There was more than what you told us?"
"Yes." Kyle replied unable to meet her eyes. He extended his hand which Jessi took and the left the dinner. They exited the dinner and the world around them dissolved into a barren grey landscape.
"Jessi I hope that what you see won't change the way you see me." Kyle spoke in much the same pleading tone Jessi had when she told Kyle about the night she was 'born'.
Before she could respond the greyscape was suddenly replaced and they found themselves in the kitchen of the Trager home. It was just as she remembered, the broken glass and shattered wood. The only difference was standing in the doorway was Kyle holding Cassidy off the ground by the throat with a look of pure hatred and rage, she was unaware Kyle was even capable of making.
The memory began unfolding and Jessi watched the interaction between Kyle and Cassidy. Cassidy said "You won't do it."
"What makes you so sure?" Kyle replied with barely restrained rage.
"Because...Grace Kingsley...my mother." Cassidy said gasping for air.
"What about her." Kyle questioned not wanting to be distracted
"She's your mother too, I'm your brother." Cassidy revealed smugly
"It doesn't matter." Kyle threw the words like they were punches, but didn't alter the pressure on Cassidy's throat.
"Kyle, you need to stop!" A gruff voice commanded. Kyle turned to see Foss on the patio three feet behind him. In his rage he hadn't heard Foss' heartbeat.
"You of all people should understand why I have to end this. I won't allow him to cause more pain!" Kyle spat the words.
Jessi gaped at the ferocity of his words, but quickly took an impartial appearance hoping Kyle hadn't noticed. The memory stopped abruptly and she knew that Kyle had noticed.
"Kyle, please continue the memory. I'm just not used to seeing you so..." Jessi said pausing to choose her words carefully. "forceful" she finished.
Kyle sighed, he was placated for the moment, and the memory resumed.
Foss walked to Kyle and places a hand on his shoulder, saying "I do understand, he does need to be stopped. But you shouldn't be the one to do it...Adam wouldn't have wanted that and neither do I."
Hearing Adam's name snaps Kyle back to reality and he releases a gasping Cassidy to the ground. Foss gives Kyle a faint smile saying "I'm proud of you. While killing may be necessary at times I don't like the idea of you taking a life,"
Cassidy seeing both of them are distracted heads quietly to the front door but his cockiness gets the best of him. "You should have done it, mate. I know where both of your little bitches are right now, and when I get done with them, not even you will want what's left. Cassidy said unable to help but push Kyle's buttons one last time.
When he heard the threats against the two women he loves and the smug expression on Cassidy's face something in Kyle snapped, he had heard the expression 'seeing red' but never imagined that it could happen literally.
As Cassidy neared the door Kyle felt a primal feeling awake in him, it was terrifying. Before he knew what was happening a wave of Electromagnetic Radiation surged from his body into Cassidy. Cassidy collapsed in convulsions as the wave hit him his face locked in a twisted silent scream.
Foss ran to Cassidy checking his vitals saying "His heart has stopped, he's dead."
"No!" Kyle screamed more upset over the taking of a human life than the specific life itself. Kyle placed his hand on Cassidy's chest and concentrated, hoping that it was still possible to revive him. The lights in the house began to flicker and across the street a transformer exploded in a shower of sparks as Cassidy gasped back to life and Kyle collapsed from the exertion.
"I'll take care of him." Foss said grimly. When Kyle gave him one of his 'killing is wrong' look Foss couldn't help a small smile before saying "Don't worry I won't kill him, for your sake. I'll just drop him in the parking lot of a hospital."
When the memory ended, Kyle turned to Jessi his face wet with tears. Jessi met his gaze with a look that can only be described as a deer in headlights look. In another situation Kyle would have found this amusing and wondered if he looked that funny as well. But not today there was nothing amusing to Kyle about the situation he found himself in.
"I had no idea Kyle was wrestling with this much darkness, I thought it was only me. This must be why he is so controlled all the time to keep this in check." Jessi mused realizing that she and Kyle were more similar than she had previously believed. Shaking herself from her thoughts she smiled at Kyle reassuringly before saying "Kyle, this doesn't change the way I see you in any way. It actually proves to me how good and noble you are."
"How can you say that? I killed him, Jessi!" Kyle practically screamed.
Pulling Kyle into a compassionate embrace, Jessi whispered in his ear "because Kyle not only did you bring him back, you made sure that Foss didn't do anything...which is more than I would have."
Kyle tried to pull away but Jessi held him even tighter. "Kyle I have killed before and before our friendship if threatened I wouldn't have hesistated to do it again, but now...I would not unless I have no other option. That's because of you." She spoke gently but emphasizing you.
Jessi reached out with her mind saying "You aren't to blame, he knew what to say for your emotional trigger, and you found a new ability. We never have control over new abilities."
Kyle sniffles at her words and hugs her tighter. "You need to forgive yourself , you did the best you could in the situation." Jessi counseled not knowing if she was talking to Kyle, herself or both.
Surprised at her words Kyle pulled back enough to look at her face. Jessi met his gaze and had a look of compassion and tact that he had only come to expect from Amanda and Nicole. He could not help but flash a brilliant smile at Jessi and say "Thank you, Jessi. You don't know how much that means to me."
Jessi smiled back realizing that until now she has only seen Kyle smile like this to Amanda, and blushes at the realization.
Seeing her reaction Kyle says "I..I think I'll be fine now. You should let everyone know I'm okay." with a hint of sadness.
"Are you sure your still seem like something is bothering you." Jessi remarked with renewed concern.
"Yeah, I..still haven't made a decision yet." Kyle stated with discord heavy in his voice.
Jessi immediately knew what he meant, and her good mood from bonding with Kyle diminished as her own insecurities bubbled to the surface, she said "okay I'll leave you alone then."
"Thank you, and Jessi please don't say anything to them. I'll tell them when I'm ready." Kyle said
"Why would I do that?" Jessi replied in her usual apathetic tone and left Kyle alone in his mind.
"What happened, is everything okay?" Nicole questioned, her words dripping with worry.
With the entire family staring at her with pleading eyes Jessi announced "Kyle will be okay now, we dealt wit-" stopping herself from saying anymore.
Relief was immediately apparent on everyone's face. "Well what was bothering him?" Stephen asked.
Jessi looked at Stephen and Nicole before saying "You'll have to ask Kyle, I can't tell you." and quickly walked out of the room before she broke into tears.