Cold Comfort

Cold Comfort

  • AUTHOR: Minka
  • TITLE: Cold Comfort
  • CATEGORY: Drama, Romance.
  • RATING: PG-13
  • SUMMARY: One-shot fill-in piece for the DVD chapters ‘Cypher’s Burnout’ and ‘Matters of Belief’, telling of Trinity’s feelings and thoughts regarding Cypher’s betrayal, Apoc and Switch’s death and the fact that it is her destiny to fall in love.
  • AUTHOR’S NOTES: Written on a bad day and to get my own anger out. This is also my first The Matrix Fanfiction story, so any feedback and comments would be greatly appreciated. July 2003.
  • DISCLAIMER: I own nothing, and after the headache that this gave me, I am rather quite glad!

Cold Comfort

Looking at him, Trinity could feel all her hate and anger build up inside, escalating into a fit of blinding rage. She could not think straight, sort her thoughts or even concentrate as her hands twitched spasmodically at her sides and her eyes blurred. It was so strong, the seductive pull of burning hatred that ripped at her being that she could not even attempt to resist it, not even if she wanted to. It felt as if she had not experienced anything until that moment; that when she surrendered herself so willingly to the churning fire of anger, all that she had once believed to be emotion disappeared from her body like smoke from a chimney. That was all it was, her feelings, an illusion, a fragment of her mind that was destined to fade away in order to make room for the one thing that she could truly count on. Rage. Fury. Abhorrence.

It coursed through her blood, boiling it as if she had taken a lethal dose of ecstasy and made her muscles twitch with pent up tension. As she looked at him, it appeared as if she had never before used her eyes; as if she had never seen the world for what it truly was until she witnessed it cloaked in a deep crimson tinge. All that mattered in the world, all that existed, was herself and the man before her, bound together in a tight and horrendously cruel loop of fate that slowly crushed in on them, cutting off breath and circulation alike; both feelings that she strangely relished under the given circumstances.

She knew it was wrong, knew that the way her body responded to the sight of the man was not right, but she could not make herself feel otherwise. Ever since her life in the Matrix, her life that, when she lived it, she would wake up every morning praying that it had all been a dream, she had known that her hate was her driving force. It was her odium that kept her the way she was, that encouraged her to fight, to work to become the second in command on the Nebuchadnezzar and to manipulate her knowledge of computer systems so that she was better equipped to think tactics. It had always been that way and, even now, she knew that it was this that would keep her going through such hard times.

But deep inside, somewhere lost and buried beneath the burning embers of her relentless anger, she knew that to harbor such feelings against a dead man was wrong.

Or was it?

He had betrayed them; four of them had died due to his treachery, two murdered by his hand! All that he had done, all that he had once been did not deserve to be brought up. Nothing that he could have done in the past could right, justify, or even balance that which he had done in the present.

Apoc, her friend from the very start and the first person that she saw unplugged after herself, was dead; deceased and never again to return. Not in a fight with an Agent, not in a grueling battle to the death for some valiant cause, but ripped from his body by one of their own. Switch, the one that she could identify with even through their differences, was now gone. They may not have always seen eye to eye, but she was a member of the crew nonetheless, an impressive tactician and as selfless as they came. Dead, both dead and under Trinity’s clock.

Feeling the hatred edging away, Trinity fought to keep a hold of it, desperately trying to keep it afloat as she knew the consequences if she failed. Her conscience would kick in, reprimanding her for the way in which she now regarded Cypher. But that was not the worst of it, not by far. If her contempt for Cypher slipped, she would have to face the truth that threatened to be far more damaging then that which their previous crew member had inflicted. She would have to see that it was her fault. That Switch and Apoc were under her command, that she was responsible for them, just as she was responsible for protecting Morpheus.

Something about that haunted her. The fact that her face was the last thing that both of them saw, that both of them looked at her was a thought that terrified her. They did not seek out her eyes due to some Matrix forced feeling of friendship or respect as they died, they looked to her for the answers. When things went bad, they sought her guidance – her leadership – trusting that she would have the remedy and that she would be able to save them.

Yet what had she done? She had stood there, phone pressed to her ear as the running codes of the Matrix told her that she felt like crying. That she should be shaking and terrified instead of trying to find a solution. She had done what she vowed never to do. Walking out of that apartment building, only minutes after her audience with the Oracle, she had told herself that she would not fall in love, that she would not feel even as the construct pounded the notion into her mind. She had lost them, lost them just as she had betrayed herself by shattering her resolution and surrendering to the reactions of the Matrix.

Tearing her eyes away from the burnt figure before her, she moved slowly about the core of the ship, her arms wrapped tightly around herself in what was an attempt of gaining something that she could not place; warmth? Solace? Equanimity? It didn’t really matter either way, not once she found herself, as if pulled by invisible strings, standing in front of the four blanketed figures which had not all that long ago been standing by her side.

It had been a decision made in silence, words and thoughts spoken through hallow, practically unseeing eyes, not to put Cypher with them. A cold comfort really; to finally separate the bad seed well and truly after it had spread its destruction. Trinity had no clue why they had done it, her thoughts telling her that it was in a sign of respect for the deceased; a parting gift.

Or was it for their benefit? Not to include him with the others in a feeble attempt to push him out of their minds; to make them think that he had never existed and thus their blindness to his betray remain unknown?

The unwanted touch of a warm and inviting hand pressing gently on her shoulder caused her to automatically pull away, her beliefs on emotions being fake still holding strong even though her defensive amour threatened to crumble. As he said her name, the questioning and what appeared to be concern so obvious in his voice, a rush ran though her as she entertained the notion of snapping that blasted Oracle’s neck. How wrong she had been! Trinity didn’t need love, she never would and the Oracle should have known that. But that was always the way, wasn’t it? Instead of voicing the things that needed to be told – as an alternative of giving a warning about such a disaster – one was told about love and other such delusions that were mere fabrications of the Matrix and its design.

Then why did her heart flutter ever so slightly at the knowledge that Neo was looking at her so intently? She was not in the Matrix now; she could not convince herself that it was a thread of code telling her mind to set off such a chemical reaction. This was the real world, the place where she had complete control, not some computer system that she had to strive to bend.

In a day, hell, in a matter of mere hours, everything that she had come to believe in shattered. The strange feeling that Morpheus was invincible, that he would always be there with the answers that they needed, that all of them could be trusted – that they were a team that were bound together in faith and reliance.

Despite her initial retaliation to the touch, she felt Neo’s hand move around in front of her, lightly grasping her right arm so that he could turn her around.

…So gentle…so careful…so impossible it resist…

Attraction – it was there like a magnetic field, pulling her eyes up to lock onto his even though the last remaining guard that stood upon the wall of her emotional barricade told her not to.

“It’s not your fault,” he said softly, as if he could read and mull over every thought within her head. The amazing thing was that the care and truthfulness that his voice and eyes spoke of did not waiver once, not even when met with the chilled and seemingly emotionless expression that Trinity offered in return.

…If only he could see…if only he could truly look into her and see that she was not cold…that her exterior was the exact opposite of her interior…that she was losing the fight against the deepening emotions…

…Or did he already know?

“There was nothing that you could do,” he said sternly, striving to prove his point and make her believe it.

…Why did she have to feel as if her very life depended on believing him?

Eyes darting to the floor, Trinity tried to tell herself that she looked away in disbelief, not that she had done such out of fear of him reading her eyes like an open book.

…He knew…he had seen it and he proved it by tucking a part of her normally slicked back fringe behind her ear.

Neo turned away and, with everything that she stood for once again abandoning her, she found that she already mourned the loss of contact. Knowing where he was going and aware that she could not yet bring herself to look at Morpheus’ deceivingly clam expression, Trinity just turned back to the four bodies that lay covered before her.

“There must be something that we can do…” the words of a hopeful man. A man that was meant to break all that she had become, this having been pre-decided long before she was even aware of her true surroundings.

…She could already see the cracks appearing; the faults in the high walls crawling forever higher like a vine in search of the sun. Soon it would break, soon all that she had shut out would come swirling in like a high tide and there was nothing that she could do to prevent it – after all, it was fate, wasn’t it?

That’s why, even after he proclaimed that he was not the One, she still believed in him. Why, when he suggested his plan, one that she would under any other circumstances call crazy and utter madness, she had the urge to follow.

Long ago, even before her question had been answered, Trinity had convinced herself that she did not believe in love…but long before that she had surrendered herself to fate. She believed in that with all that she was, so who was she to question something that was already destined to happen, even if it meant proving herself wrong in the process?

“I’m going with you.”

The End.

Soundtrack: Massive Attack’s ‘Dissolved Girl’

Fade, made to fade
Passion’s overrated anyway
Say, say my name
I need a little love to ease the pain
I need a little love to ease the pain
It’s easy to remember when it came

‘Cause it feels like I’ve been
I’ve been here before
You are not my savior
But I still don’t go, oh

I feel like something
That I’ve done before
I could fake it
But I still want more, oh.

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