DISCLAIMER: The characters herein are used without permission. No infringement intended.
SPOILERS: Assumes some events of season 2 and season 3.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.
FEEDBACK: To chava3040[at]gmail.com
Watchman, What of the Night?
A sudden shift in direction knocked what little breath was left out of Myka's chest. She uncurled at the force of the change in direction; gasping in an attempt to alleviate the sudden vacuum in her chest. She felt herself being pulled upward right as she was about to collide with the wall. Looking down, she saw the tiny figures of Pete and Helena leaning over a prostrate figure on the floor of the Warehouse. Before she could truly contemplate what was happening, she was rushing further away as she continued to sweep upward. The figures below her were quickly disappearing to tiny specs of nothingness.
The force pulling Myka appeared to be generated by the feather still clutched in her hand. In an attempt to slow her velocity, she tried letting go of the seemingly innocuous object. To her dismay, the feather held fast in her closed fist. Concentrating on her hand, willing it to unwrap from the feather, Myka was more than a little awed at the realization that the feather had a hold on her, and not the other way around.
Beams of light were spilling from the feather and curling around and up her arm. Noticing the light for the first time, she took a moment to take in its incandescent beauty before promptly freaking out at the fact that the light was moving up her arm. She tried to sweep the light back, but her fingers went through the insubstantial substance. Before she knew what was happening, she was encased in the glowing brilliance. The force propelling her was now all around her.
Heart in her throat, Myka tried to still the rush of fear that swept through her as she was ushered into an enormous chamber. Nausea overtaking her at the sudden stop of her forward motion she bent at the waist before dropping to her knees and heaving in several cleansing breaths. Feeling eyes on her, she looked up to see a sea of faces. Heart thudding painfully in her chest, she stood on wobbly knees. Looking with false bravado at the faces across from her she tried to keep from collapsing.
Looking around to get a better idea of where she was, Myka noticed several things at once: the figures across from her were enormous beings; those same figures were closing the distance between them at an unbelievably fast pace; she was standing on what appeared to be an enormous scale; the feather that had been clutched in her hand was now on the other side of the balance. Myka was not sure what it all meant, all she knew was that she was afraid. She was feeling the kind of fear that makes its presence known only in darkness; the kind of fear that knots the stomach and makes a cold sweat break out on the brow; the kind of fear that settles between the shoulder blades and presses unmercifully until the chest is constricted to the point of pain. The kind of fear that resides within the ribcage and once released poisons the blood with each beat of the heart. Myka was experiencing that type of fear; the fear that she was in over her head with no rescue in sight. She was not only scared that she was in a bad situation, but she felt real unadulterated fear that is only experienced when in the presence of something supernatural.
Now surrounded by the fearsome figures, Myka felt faint. She recognized several but could not wrap her mind around what she was seeing. She gulped as her eyes landed on the fierce visage of the jackal headed figure. She knew she was staring into the face of the ancient Egyptian god Anubis. Closing her eyes against what she was seeing, she prayed she was just in a very bad dream. Shuddering, she considered her position. She stood weighed in the balance of an ancient system for unknown reasons. And above her, meting out judgment, were a committee of beings that should not exist. All looking at her as if she were about to be dumped into the deepest punishment.
She unconsciously took a step back, coming dangerously close to the edge of the scale. Anubis turned his head to pierce her with a steely glare. "What is this?" the jackal swiveled his head toward Osiris. "She is not the one the feather was to attract." Myka wanted to run, but she had nowhere to go. Heart thudding in her ears, breathing near hyperventilating, Myka tried to be as brave as she could given the circumstances. "Child, be still," echoed a booming voice through the chamber in a voice that was at once soothing and terrifying. The elegantly decorated Pharaoh said nothing more; his green skin doing an excellent job of adding menace to his imposing figure. Myka suddenly knew how Dorothy felt facing off against the Wicked Witch. Although, her mind screamed at her, a bucket of water would probably do her no good in this situation.
In the back of her mind, her curiosity was peaked. She knew she should not suddenly understand a language dead for many centuries. Myka considered the phenomenon that she was experiencing at the moment, before her fear made itself known once again at the distinct arguing happening around her. Her fear lessened marginally when she realized the figures were mad at each other and not necessarily at her. Suspending her idea of reality for a moment and taking a mental step back while the figures argued, Myka considered what she was seeing. Ancient Egyptian gods of two completely different time periods were working side by side (though not very well, as evidenced by the constant arguing) to achieve some common goal. She could not discern the common goal, but she knew it had to be important to get two different ages of gods to cooperate.
Tuning back into the conversation happening over her, Myka tried to make sense of what she was hearing. She listened transfixed as the two gods of the dead argued back and forth.
"The one that entered our sanctum a century ago was supposed to be attracted to the feather," Anubis said, annoyance coloring his tone, "instead, we get this innocent whose soul is lighter than the feather."
"There must be a reason the feather choose her and not the other," the booming voice of Osiris answered. "The feather is truth and justice. And, it does not answer to us Anubis. We simply asked for protection to keep existing. The feather will provide us that through this innocent."
Forgetting she was at the edge of the balance, Myka took a step back when all the attention was once again focused on her. She tensed when she felt herself begin to fall. A large hand on her back, however, stopped her decent before it started. She was gently pushed back onto the balance. Turning around to see who had saved her, Myka was momentarily shocked speechless. A breathtakingly beautiful creature stood before her. She had the perfect figure with two blindingly white wings spreading across her back, a throne sitting atop a flawless face. Myka mutely nodded in thanks to the goddess Isis. The goddess stepped back smiling.
Turning to Osiris and Anubis, Isis began to speak in measured, honeyed tones, "This innocent is connected to the one who sought to destroy the world with one of our weapons. She is connected to both her past and her future. The feather chose her because she is the only one who can truly change the injured one's heart. I see a bond, threadbare but present, connecting this young one to the other one. She will save the world," here she paused and looked directly at Myka, "if she lives through the experience that connects her to the injured one's past."
"Can we not just tell her?" Anubis asked staring hard at Myka.
"It would not be sufficient," Isis answered, looking at Myka compassionately, as if wishing she could spare her the experience.
"She must experience the truth," Osiris said with finality.
Unable to stay quiet anymore, Myka gathered her courage and asked, "What truth?"
"Your truth," all the gathered gods answered simultaneously.
At that, Myka's world exploded. She was engulfed in light and hurled down and back. She could see the world around her. She was rushing over deserts and forests and cities. She was headed to the heart of what appeared to be London, except it was rougher around the edges than she remembered. She was headed to an abandoned area of the city to a decrepit warehouse, where a young man was dying under the weight of a wooden beam that seemed to have exploded in an artifact induced accident.
She covered her face and head as she rushed to the ground. She hit the ground hard. The wind completely expelling form her lungs. Gasping, she tried to pull in breath, but something was constricting her chest. Myka heard steps and tried to call out for help but could not get enough breath in her lungs to make her vocal cords work. Wheezing in short breaths, she hoped someone would appear and rescue her.
The blinding light that had engulfed Myka dissipating, Pete and Helena rushed to Myka's prostrate body. Both agents breathing hard at the exertion of trying to reach Myka in time, their expressions grim as they inspected the body of their fallen friend. Pete checked for a pulse, while Helena busied herself with ascertaining if Myka had any grievous injuries that they could not see.
Feeling a thready, but evident, pulse, Pete expelled a heavy breath. Looking up at the sound, Helena searched his face, "What is it?"
"She's still with us but something is wrong," straightening out he looked over Myka's body. Not finding what he was looking for, he began sweeping his eyes to the area directly surrounded them. "Where is it?" He mumbled to himself, forgetting Helena was there with him and letting panic enter his voice.
"What are you looking for?" Helena asked not lifting her head from her assessment of Myka.
"The feather." He said in something approaching desperation. "We have to find that feather." He moved to circle the area near the statues. "We have to neutralize it." He paced back to where Helena now stood over Myka's body. "We have to get her back." He paced another circle around the immediate area, eyes looking frantically for the object. "We have to find that feather, so we can get her back." He quickly paced back toward the wall, eyes desperately searching the floor. "She can't be gone. She can't leave me." Quickly whirling around in his anxious search, he let out a frustrated growl at the fruitlessness of his hunt. "Where is the damn feather?" Frustration welling up inside him, he slammed his hand on the nearest thing to him.
"Get a hold of yourself Lattimer," Helena snapped, her anxiousness making her short with the other agent, "And for the love of God, do not touch anything." She glanced up at where his hand was precariously placed. "I cannot possibly get Myka out safely if you are both out of commission. Do try to be an aid and not a hindrance." She did not even spare Pete a glance as she voiced her opinion.
"Listen lady, I have every right to be freaking out," he responded hotly, approaching Helena and stopping on the opposite side of Myka's prone form. "Why aren't you freaking out? Shouldn't you be more frantic than I am?" He leaned in closer to Helena his voice turning sarcastic, his innate dislike of her urging him to goad and ruffle her unflappable attitude. "She is only your lover," he smirked at the slight widening of her eyes. "Or was she only a good lay. Another notch on the great H.G. Wells' belt." Knowing he had hit a nerve at the narrowing of Helena's eyes, Pete continued to verbally poke at the rapidly steaming woman. "She was one of many, as I recall." He brought his hand up to his chin, and partially mimicked The Thinker, "What was it you said?" He pretended to contemplate it for a moment before he made an exaggerated gesture of a eureka moment, "Ahh yes, something along the lines of 'many of my lovers were men.'" Pete accompanied the statement with air quotes and falsetto voice in imitation of Helena before dropping the pretense and looking hard at the woman. "So, what exactly was Myka?" He asked, scowling at the inventor. "Maybe a distraction? A fun way to pass the time until you found something better? Or, just someone to get your blood flowing after spending a century in the bronze sector?"
The sound of a resounding slap echoed through the suddenly quiet Warehouse. Pete's head jerked back at the force of the slap. Years of close quarters combat training had his fist flying at his opponents face before he even registered that he was retaliating. Unable to stop now that he had his entire weight behind the punch, Pete just closed his eyes and cringed at the fact that he was about to hit a woman. A second later, when his fist should have been solidly connecting with a very pretty Victorian jaw, the entire force of his punch was absorbed and stopped by a surprisingly strong grip. His eyes snapped open to see Helena's hand firmly curled around his fist, a mere inch separating the space between their clasped hands and her face.
His eyes cut to her blazing brown orbs. "I am quite a bit more formidable than you give me credit for Agent Lattimer," she practically spat at him. Helena was fuming. She tossed his fist aside, leaned over the space separating them, finger pushing firmly into his chest. "How dare you?" she bit off every word, not yelling, but more intimidating in her quiet fury. "You have no idea what is between Myka and myself. You have absolutely no right to question my motives and intentions. Our relationship is none of your business."
Not one to be outdone in emotional outbursts, Pete swatted Helena's hand from his chest, squared his shoulders, and leaned to within an inch of the inventor's face. "I have every right," he snapped back at her. "I'm the best friend that watched her pine for you for a year before you even acknowledged her attraction. And, you couldn't let her down gently once you finally deigned to recognize her infatuation." Pete gestured wildly with his hands, trying to emphasize his points, his voice inflecting more the angrier he got on Myka's behalf, yet he managed to stay in Helena's face. "Nooohooohoooo. I was the one that had to hear about how hot and cold you were; how you flipped form yes to no every second; how you were in and then out; and how you were up and then down. God, I think Myka wrote the lyrics to that stupid, but very catchy, Katy Perry song." Pete took a deep breath, winding down from his rant. "You, lady, should've just "
A seismic tremor, that shook the entire Warehouse, swallowed up what Pete was going to say. The shaking continued for an endless moment, sending both agents crashing to the ground. When the final vibrations subsided, both Pete and Helena scrambled to their feet, a silent truce agreement communicated through a quick look. "We have to get out of here," Pete said unnecessarily. Helena barely contained the urge to roll her eyes at him.
"Very astute observation, Pete," she mocked, unable to forgo a final jab at the man. Pete grunted but refrained from commenting. Making their way over to Myka's prone form, both agents considered their next move. Bending to get closer the woman who was drastically changing everything she had planned for over a century, Helena let out a pained sigh. She tenderly tucked a strand of stray hair behind Myka's ear and cupped a cool, deathly pale face. She refused to consider the very real possibility that the weak heartbeat she felt under her hand could possibly stop. "You mustn't leave me a second time, my love." Helena took a shuddering breath, momentarily overwhelmed by a familiar feeling of loss blossoming in the center of her chest.
Feeling like a voyeur witnessing a private moment, Pete stepped back and averted his gaze, attempting to give Helena the moment she needed. For all his bluster and righteous anger, he knew that what was happening between his partner and Helena was serious and deep.
Composing herself, Helena got up and addressed Pete, "How shall we proceed?"
Pete took a moment to consider their situation but was cut short when another tremor shook the Warehouse. Knowing they had little time for finesse, Pete got down next to Myka, and as gently as he could, lifted her up into a fireman's carry. "You're definitely lighter than I thought Mykes," he muttered softly looking at his partner's ashen face. Expelling a breath, he adjusted Myka as he stood and looked to Helena, "I guess now we hope we get lucky and find the way out."
Assessing that the other agent had a good hold on Myka but not responding, Helena began walking through the maze of aisles not hesitating as she expertly lead the way. Pete, lagging slightly at the added weight on his shoulders, looked over his shoulder his brow furrowed in confusion, "Hey," he called at the quickly moving woman, "how do you know where you're going?" He caught up to Helena (who had paused to wait for him), "Are we even going the right way?" He looked around the area skeptically.
"Yes," Helena began moving again, "we are going in the right direction."
Huffing, but moving at the inventor's pace, Pete shot her a sidelong look, "How do you even know that?"
Turning at a bend he had not noticed, Pete only heard her disembodied voice as he backpedaled and followed Helena through the hidden fissure, "How can I put it in a way that you would understand?" He caught a quick view of her, before she turned at another bend and disappeared from view again. "This is not my first rodeo, Agent Lattimer?" Stepping through to follow, Pete had to stop and close his eyes at the sudden blinding light hitting his face.
They were standing outside the Warehouse, sun high in the sky and sand as far as the eye could see.
"Wells," the tall man called to the inventor. "Kataranga said the curiosity originated in this general area, but we have yet to find anything. Perhaps, if we spread out and make a wider search, we will actually find something."
Nodding at his suggestion, Helena moved to widen the perimeter of her search. Carefully making her way through the rubble of the explosion, she startled at the pained groan that erupted from a figure she had missed lying in the shadows beneath a fallen wooden beam. Quickly assessing if the figure was a threat, she cautiously made her way to help, "MacShane," she called over her shoulder, "I think I may have found something."
She could hear MacShane's heavy gait approaching behind her. Feeling sufficiently covered if anything were to transpire, Helena closed the final distance between herself and the stranger. Looking down at a face contorted in pain and quickly losing consciousness, she saw the most beautiful green eyes looking up at her through the haze of pain.
"Helena," a pain roughed voice rasped in something akin to surprise, "What are you doing here?" Helena's eyebrows rose in surprise that this stranger knew her name. Before she could ask the question at the tip of her tongue, MacShane let out a bark of laughter. Two pairs of eyes cut to the man who had just reached them.
"An American, Wells," his eyes twinkled in amusement as he spoke. "You certainly have interesting tastes." Before she could interject that she did not have any idea who the stranger was, MacShane continued speaking (amusement still evident in his tone), "Let's get this thing off you then, shall we," MacShane stated as he grabbed one end of the beam. "Would you be a dear, Wells, and help me rescue this good American?"
At a loss for words in her surprise, Helena simply acquiesced and helped MacShane remove the beam. MacShane helped the stranger up who most certainly had a few broken ribs if the grimaces of pain and inability to pull in a full breath were any indication. Gently looping his arm around thin shoulders, Macshane steadied the swaying American. "Steady there, I think you may have a couple of broken ribs," MacShane stated as he helped the stranger move toward the waiting carriage.
Shaking out of her momentary funk, Helena moved to catch up to the figures already seated in the carriage. Sitting directly across from the stranger, who looked ready to lose consciousness at any moment, she asked what MacShane had prevented her from asking before, "You have me at a disadvantage," she made sure to make eye contact before continuing, "you seem to know me, but I cannot say that we have met before." She saw and felt confused green eyes track over her face. Taking a half breath, the stranger let out a name.
"Micah," Helena tried the name out on her tongue.
Nodding, green eyes clouded in pain locked on hers and looked deep into her soul and tugged at her heartstrings, the American repeated the name in a rough, deep voice, "Myka Bering."
Myka's world turned dark as the carriage hit an uneven patch of road that pushed broken ribs into soft tissue which caused the pain to cross the line of tolerable pain the body could handle.
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