Author's Notes: hmm this is a funny one. Combination of two things I rarely indulge in; song based and first/second person perspective. The songs come from Emily Haines and the Soft Skeletons. The reason for the perspective... it's half because I wanted to accentuate how close Abby and Connor are, by making them "we", and because I wanted this closeness to create ambiguity about which of them is talking. Please do say which of them you see it as. Might be interesting to see what people think :D
Setting: Post Series 3, Pre-Series 4, Cretaceous.
Cut in Half and Also Double
It didn't take long for this world to change us. To change... everything about us. We don't belong here. Neither of us. Everything we knew from our old lives was gone; useless to us in a world as unforgiving as this. We had to forget it all, and learn how to survive.
We had, at first, blindly believed that we would, somehow, be rescued. That if we could only find Danny, together we would find a way out of this place. We had stumbled through the trees, following his footprints. It kept us going, thinking that we were doing something. For an hour or two, we thought that, maybe, if we were all together, an anomaly would magically appear to whisk us home. All would be right again.
But then his footsteps stopped. There was nothing that showed whether he had caught up with Helen... though, likewise, there was no sign that he had been attacked, though there were raptor-footprints here and there. Wherever he was, he was out of their reach. Suddenly the hope that had kept them warm through the night seemed to burn a little less bright. As we looked at each other for a long moment, I saw my own feelings reflected in your eyes. We were alone. The device that brought us here was dead. There was no way forward. No way back. No way for the people back home to know if we were still alive, let alone for them to reach us. No way for us to know if Danny had caught up to her; whether her plan had succeeded. No escape. No-one else.
It didn't take long for our rations to run out. We didn't have much in our bags anyway, just snacks that were in them anyway. Too soon, we had to learn what the world we'd left behind had forgotten. We had to learn what we could hunt that wouldn't kill us first. What plants were edible. What tasted half good. Violence became our lives. Brutality to avoid becoming its victim.
Do you remember how difficult it was, at first? Trapped in that uneasy space between friendship and more. We had never been that uncertain before. Each of us cursed with a love that we couldn't express. Stumbling, lost in two worlds at the same time. One where we had to hide from deadly creatures, one that we had from our feelings. Awkward and frightened, confused and uncertain. It almost killed us. In a world as dangerous as this, there was no room for fighting. We had to keep keep each other breathing. Breathing, not wasting our breath of hurtful, untrue words.
But that life changed us. The only two people in the world; we had to trust each other. We stopped pushing each other away, and started drawing closer. Pettiness couldn't survive if we were going to. Jokes kept us going, yes, but to live... to live, we needed solidarity. Out here, screaming at the cruelty of this world. The life that we fought through was gone. Helen's plans threw us from the edge of what we knew, leaving us floating in an unknown world, drifting towards the beach. We could only huddle together in this place. Wandering. Hoping that there would never come a morning when we'd wake up lonely.
I would rather give the world away than wake up without you.
Now... everywhere and every way, you're here with me. I'm glad that it was you. I can't imagine being here with anyone but you. This is our hell; we can't escape it, or the fear, or the numbing hunger, or the sleepless nights. The lonesome lows don't go away overnight, and they get at both of us. You hide it better than I do. We both pretend we don't miss a thousand things from our old lives – Rex, Sid and Nancy, warm beds, easy food, the team, their jobs – the memories couldn't be forgotten. But together... maybe we can colour in the black hole that's been left in our lives that that past, that future has left for us. Maybe we can make it a little more bearable.
Sometimes I think that maybe you're my prize. My reward. We have to suffer this hell, this constant torment. But we have each other to make the pain feel a little better. And do you know what? Perhaps if this is what we needed in order to see what we had... maybe what I thought it was, it isn't. Because hell... hell is something I would suffer a thousand times for you.
You make this hell a good life.
Yes, my hands will shake. Your eyes will burn. Our throats will ache. But we can survive. We can live. I know you get frustrated. I know it gets to you. It gets to me too. But if you take my hand when it shakes, I'll wipe away your tears when they fall.
I know you don't believe in dreams anymore, and that you don't like to close your eyes. I know it makes you feel weak when you wake up screaming. Neither of us will stop screaming. Our throats won't stop aching. But I'll be there to hold you when you do. I'll always be there, watching over you. You'll never wake up lonely. Nothing about this is fair, and if I could suffer your boredom for you, I would. A thousand times, if it would save you from it.
But all we can do is hold each other, weathering the storm. Finding solace in the fact that, even if we have nothing else in this entire world. But we're never alone. We can never be alone. If we keep each other safe, keep each other breathing, the we'll never live a day here alone.
We can't stop the sun rising on a new dawn. A new day of fear. But we if we can live to see it set, we can watch it together and hope... just hope that next time we see it rise, it's rays will fall upon those glittering, convulsing shards of broken time. It will rise on a way for them to get home.
As long as I've got you, alive, warm, breathing... you are my hope.
The world might be cruel, harsh and cold... but hope isn't.
We can't let go of hope.