Note from Zee Techie: So, I'm sorry about the long wait. I've been swamped with work and I had to leave the sanctity of my own home. Nah, I'm not really complaining. My boyfriend is being kind of enough to let me use his fancy Mac Book! This thing is beast and inspires me.

So I'll cease my verbiage and get on with Engie/Snippy! This is all for the minions on the RA forums…thanks for the support.

He was exhausted, ready to drop.

It was becoming more difficult to fall asleep at night. He used to be able sleep soundly for four hours before he was jerked awake by a twisted nightmare. But lately it had been decreasing dramatically. Last night he had gotten a little less than an hour, it was an on and off sleep. All the images he saw were terrifying, they tore him apart. Whenever he awoke he would rush to the bathroom, searching his body for wounds or holes.

But there was none to be seen.

And this morning was no exception. Once vibrant blue eyes turned towards the mirror after the routine check. They were staring at the form of ragged man. He needed a shave and some food; he was getting a little small. He had already requested a new uniform from work due to the weight loss. His boss had laughed at him but handed over the new uniform. It was humiliating.

"Need coffee…" He mumbled as he dragged himself to the kitchen. The smell of coffee brewing filled his nostrils. It would have been a welcome scent but instead it sent a nauseating feeling to his stomach, "Need coffee…"

He pushed aside the sick feeling and poured himself a cup of the steaming caffeine. Adding cream and sugar he took a big swig from the cup. It burned his throat and sent a wave of nausea to his stomach but it started the wheels in his brain. He was slowly becoming aware of his surroundings.

It was time to go to work.

He wanted to kill himself.

He had just spent seven thousand credits on a cup coffee. He was glaring at the beverage sitting on his desk with a burning rage. But it had been worth it. Half of it was already gone. While it assisted in keeping him awake it didn't make the sick feeling go away.

"Tell me something, Charles. Is that coffee going to solve all your problems?" Charles Snippy didn't dare look up. He did not want to face his tormentor, "What's wrong? Cat got your tongue? Or perhaps it's Annie?"

He sighed and gave in, blue eyes gazing up.

Standing there with a smug look on his face was Dr. Alexander Gromov, the creator and head admin of ANNET. The reason he couldn't sleep at night. He wanted to tell the man to go fuck off and die but before he could open his mouth a folder was slammed onto his desk. He turned his gaze to the female standing before him.

"Got more tourists, Snippy. Better get ready. Oh and try not to suck this time." The woman said before she walked away. His head dropped and slammed into the surface of his desk. He could still feel those glowing amber eyes on him.

"Troubles with your new position? And after you requested it?" Gromov asked. Charles took a moment to look up the doctor before rising up from his seat, grabbing the folder and storming off. He had a job to do.

No matter how much it sucked.

As he pulled on his gear all he could hear were voices.

'Mr. Snippy! Fetch me these supplies!'

'Why don't you just go away, you jiggly slug? That way Captain and I can be together forever!'

'I'm sorry, Charles but you've been rejected by the Neural Network.'

'Come on, Mr. Snippy! We have work to do! Minions don't have time to slack off!'

'Don't you talk bad about Zee Captain!'

"Charles, are you alright?"

The man nearly jumped out of his skin when he heard that voice. He looked up and saw the woman from before standing there. She looked a little concerned and confused, "You've been acting weird all morning. Is everything alright?"

"Fine…just need more sleep." He muttered as he adjusted his goggles and walked out. There was a group of people standing around in the lobby. They had all the proper gear to go out into the Dead Zone, "Alright people, if you'll just follow me! Make sure your gear is on properly and secured tightly! We'd hate for you to become radiated! The Good Directorate won't be held responsible…"

The last sentence had been mumbled.

As the group filed out and into the armored vehicle he could hear them talking. They had nothing nice to say about him. None of them ever did. He was seen as the idiot who couldn't connect to ANNET and was stuck with a dead end job. It wasn't like he asked for this. He didn't ask for the headaches or horrid nightmares.

What sane person would?

The tour had gone swimmingly.

As he stood in the strawberry-scented decontamination shower he thought back to. This one had gone decently better than the others even with him running on less than an hour of sleep. The smell of strawberries started taking over his senses. It was strangely soothing.

'Maybe…I can get some sleep here. There's no Captain…no Pilot…no Directorate…No stupid tourists.' He thought. His body started swaying, 'No ANNET…No Gromov…'

As Snippy closed his eyes he didn't hear the voices screaming at him. He didn't feel the pain as his body slammed onto the tile below. He didn't hear the door to the decontamination room open or the familiar Russian accented voice calling his name. Everything was dark.

And for once, there were no nightmares.

His head pounded like something fierce.

When he awoke he was in a dimly lit room, lying upon a couch. It was comfier than the bed he had back home. There was no alarm clock to wake up and no smell of nauseating coffee. They were replaced with an oddly peaceful clicking noise in the background and the smell of aftershave. Blue eyes glanced down and noted the thick fleece tossed across his body.

"Don't get up so quickly." He knew that voice. His body jerked forward but he deeply regretted it. A searing pain shot up and down his spine, straight to his head. He fell back against the soft pillow and buried his face into its plushness.

"I tried to warn you, Snippy." He felt a hand touch the top of his head, "You're suffering from a mild concussion, it's best you remain still for the new few hours."

Snippy would have complained about Gromov touching him but it soothed the pain. When those nimble fingers started massaging against his scalp he couldn't help but move closer to the soothing touch, "So, where am I? Shouldn't I be at a hospital?"

"You would be, if you could afford it." Alexander stated as he pulled his hand back, "But one look at your finances and they were about ready to just ship you home. I volunteered to take you home with me and watch over you."

Snippy felt an odd feeling settle in his stomach. He was lying in Alexander Gromov's house on his insanely comfy couch. He had to get out of here and fast. He slowly rose up, "Listen, I appreciate your offer. But Gromov, you and I both know we hate each others' guts."

He was pushed back down.

"What the-...?" He growled. His blue eyes turned upwards and were met with equally fired up amber eyes. They were filled with this dominance that Snippy had never seen in Gromov before.

"You're staying here, Snippy. Accept it and rest. If you so much as twitch to get off that couch, I'll have Annie come and personally give you nightmares." Gromov said as he turned around and sat back down at his computer, continuing his work. The blue-eyed tour guide let out a frustrated sigh and sank beneath the covers.

'Might as well catch up on some sleep. If Gromov is offering his quiet home…I won't complain.' Snippy thought as he closed his eyes.

He felt that searing pain again.

That giant mass of death had him in a death grip. It was piercing his body, slithering through him. He struggled against it but it only angered the beast. He felt those tentacles wrap around his organs and squeeze. One tentacle managed its way up his torso. Slowly it wrapped around his heart and pierced it.

"You can't hide anything from me, Mr. Snippy."

He let out a scream.

He shot up from his bed and screamed, clutching his chest. He felt two strong hands grip his shoulders and tried to brush them away, struggling to get away, "Get away from me! Don't touch me!"

"Damn it, Charles! I'm trying to help you!" Fearful blue eyes turned and were met with the sight of a worried Russian doctor. Those amber eyes were filled with confusion and concern, "See? It's just me."

Those hands returned and grasped his shoulders gently, pulling him close. Callused fingers brushed through his sweat soaked hair, sending a soothing chill through his body. He didn't realize his own hands had reached up and clutched onto the front of Gromov's shirt.

Something to anchor him to reality.

Although he couldn't understand, the Russian words the doctor spoke mixed with the smell of aftershave was oddly comforting, 'Never thought I'd find myself being comforted by Gromov…the creator of my misery. But for someone who made something so awful…he's being awfully nice.'

Snippy allowed his body to relax against Alexander's. It was nice to be taken care of for once. Whether this was the first and last time, it didn't matter. He didn't have a worry in the world, "Comfy, Snippy?"

"You know what?" Snippy asked as he nuzzled into Alexander's chest, "I am."

Alexander was taken aback when the tour guide admitted it. Even more shocked when the smaller man moved closer to him. A smile spread across his lips. He reached down and tilted Snippy's head up so their eyes met.

"Good." Was all he said before he captured those pouty lips in a kiss.

End Note from Zee Techie: Sorry if it ended the way it did. It's 1:00 am where I am and I wanted to give them a fluffy/romantic moment. So I figured, "let's end this with a kiss". And it did.

Next: Writing Engie/Captain and potentially another Engie/Snippy (make it better and not written at 1:00 am)