Variations on a Theme
- AUTHOR: Mara Trinity Scully
- TITLE: Variations on a Theme
- CATEGORY: Drama, Post-movie.
- RATING: PG-13, serious theme.
- SUMMARY: Devastating news.
- AUTHOR’S NOTES: This was inspired by… damn, everything important to me in my life at this moment. Feminism, my mom, my search for the understanding of the phallic mother, Lord of the Rings (kudos if you catch the two bizarre references), my darling Centaur, (LOL) all of the Matrix Girls’ writings, and my love of the return key. Anyway, this piece means a lot to me. (btw, can’t you tell that me and centaur listen to the same music? I wonder why…dude, most of the music I listen to is from her…) Feedback: Yes please! Thank you: To Centaur for telling me this wasn’t crap and actually postable…whoa, I love that girl. You’re the bestest!
- DISCLAIMER: Wachowski & Warner Brothers? Hey there, love you guys. Kiss kiss.
Variations on a Theme
And [Eoywn] answered: “…But I am of the House of Eorl and not a serving-woman. I can ride and wield blade, and I do not fear either pain or death.”
“What do you fear, lady?” [Aragorn] asked.
“A cage,” she said.
JRR Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King
I just wanna be a woman.
Portishead’s “Glory Box”
- Don’t touch me, she said. Don’t touch me.
I move away from her, slowly to let her know that I will not leave her. I cannot leave her like this.
- Her slender back is leaned up against the harsh metal wall, her sinewy arms wrapped around her knees. She looks at me with determined eyes. I won’t cry, she tells me. This will not break me. I will not break.
I don’t understand. Trinity, what happened. I ask. Morpheus told me you had a message. From Zion.
- Her eyes close and her whole body shakes.
I want to hold her, I want to tell her everything will be okay.
What was it, Trinity? What did they send you? I break my gaze to stare at the floor, I can’t stand this angst. I want it over. I want to know the problem. I can fix it. I can fix anything.
- Trinity lets out a breath, it sounds raspy and cold. She looks down between her knees. Quietly she murmurs to me. You wouldn’t understand, Neo. You can’t understand. And I’m glad that you can’t. It would be wrong if you could just…change reality.
Tell me. Tell me what you read, what you found out. I have to resist from shouting, the quiet intensity of the room is almost boiling over. I can’t stand it. I want to reach down and pick her up onto her feet and shake her, forcing her to tell me what is wrong. But I can’t do that. I can’t do anything but wait for her to let me know.
- Silently she sits. The room echoes quietly with the sound of my breath.
- Do you remember your mother? She asks at last.
This startles me. I haven’t thought of my mother…I mean, the mother the Matrix gave me in years.
I close my eyes and smell the air. Vanilla. That was my mother’s smell. A nutty vanilla smell. Her eyes were alive and vibrant. Green/brown eyes. Intoxicating. She had dark hair, brown hair in magnificent waves. Pale skin and red lips. She was Snow White, my mother, beautiful Snow White. Her mouth was always in a smirk. But her face was kind, loving. She wore red as often as she could. I remember a particular crimson dress she owned. It was a party dress. She would go upstairs to my room and smile at me. I would nuzzle my face in her embrace, loving the softness of that dress. Then she would leave me with my nurse and I wouldn’t see her for days. I always thought she was a queen when I was that small. A queen who had people to rule and control. She never had enough time for her princeling, as she called me, but she always loved me. I knew that.
I finally speak. She was a beautiful woman. Always laughing. A sweet merry laugh. It’s strange, I haven’t thought of her since…Her name was Michelle. Michelle Anderson. She was a lawyer and a socialite…an incredible woman of great personal strength.
- She looks at my eyes. She died of childbirth when you were in high school. And your father disappeared.
I remember. I never heard from him again. He left me money, he left me his name. And he left me her body. And the baby. I buried them alone…I suppose his disappearance was one of the few glitches in the Matrix where they delete a person by accident.
- Her eyebrow raises, When has the Matrix ever done anything by accident?
Point taken. Why do you ask? Have you heard anything about them?
- No, her eyes say. No.
Then what is it that is torturing you. What is it that has you racked in pain. And what can I do…
- She cocks her head to the side. I got a message from Zion today. From the Zion Medical Center. Dr. Ioreth finished the testing and sent me my results.
- She stops. She breathes in air and lets it out slowly. She stares in between her knees again.
- I can never bear children, Neo. My womb is completely dysfunctional and cannot be repaired.
Wait. Wait. What are you talking about? I don’t understand. I feel helpless.
- Her voice is sharp. Pained. The machines mass-produce the human race. Why bother to make sure that the reproductive organs are functional? Why perfect the reproductive system in the energy source that never will have the chance to breed on its own? It was eventually a safety implementation brought about when the machines realized that their humans were escaping.
- We encounter this often with the unplugged. Sometimes the womb is in perfect condition, sometimes it needs surgery, and sometimes…it doesn’t work or isn’t there at all.
Her pain, her anguish refuels my anger for the machines. We are marred. We are not whole. There are countless other examples of where the mass production of the field grown humans screwed up on the vital organs, bone structure, body mass, and so on. But I had never thought of this before. I never thought of Trinity as…barren…and without hope…
- She looks away. Without any feeling in her voice at all, she speaks quietly.
- I have no ovum and my body would reject any foreign ova injected inside me. I can never be a mother. I can never hold my child in my arms. And so I will always be a warrior, never a woman.
You are a woman, Trinity.
- I will never feel life growing inside me, Neo. I feel empty. I feel dark.
Let me fill you. It’s on the tip of my tongue. Let me fill you Trinity. With my light.
- The machines have no idea how important this is to us. Even in the Matrix, they don’t expand on the idea that the symbiotic relationship of mother and child is mind blowing…and precious.
I think back to the old times. I remember reaching to my own mother, hold me hold me before you go momma hold me. I want to hold you my darling but I have to go…it’s my time…She wanted to hold me but something held her back until I touched her hand…
- Neo, don’t touch me. Don’t touch me yet.
My eyes are closed, my fists are clenched, my mind buzzes. I am helpless. I cannot save her.
- I never realized how much I wanted…
The loneliness and the pain hits me hard in the chest. I love her and she’s out of my reach. There is nothing to do but hold her…
My eyes fling open.
Eyes are staring into mine, dark hair surrounds the face. It takes me a moment to drink the image in. Trinity.
I move away and sit down a few feet away from her. I can smell her pain down her. It’s bitter and harsh. There is something else.
- Switch’s results also came in.
And they were positive.
- They were positive. Her womb was in satisfactory shape. She and Apoc would have been so happy.
- It feels strange to envy her now.
I tell her I love you. This doesn’t change how much I love you.
- I know. I know it wouldn’t.
I wait. I wait, listening to breathing, listening to my heart beat, listening to the mild hum of the ship. Listening to the agony in the air.
Finally. Let me hold you.
- She does.
- I slide in and place my hand on her stomach, empty and barren. She places her hand on my hand, her eyes are dark, misty.
What strength I have, let it pass to you.
- I don’t need your strength, Neo. I need you. Touch me. Make me whole.
You don’t need me to make you whole. And you are everything. You are.