- AUTHOR: MulticoloredGypsy
- TITLE: Longhand
- CATEGORY: Drama, Angst.
- RATING: PG
- SUMMARY: It broke their hearts to see Trinity; dark circles looming beneath her eyes as they strained to hold back the tears threatening to spill at any minute, her face drawn with sadness and guilt. None of them wanted to be the one to tell her it wasn’t likely that Neo would ever wake up.
- SPOILERS: Spoilers for the end of Reloaded.
- AUTHOR’S NOTES: I don’t have so much to say, except a HUGE thanks to Rae for beta’ing this for me, you’re so much help! Thanks again! You rock!
He had brought her back to life only to have his own all but taken away, everything put on hold. Trinity tried to believe that Neo would come out of it, but she was plagued with fear and doubt. You can only put someone on hold for so long before they hang up. It wasn’t fair. What had she done to have him taken from her? Was it because she disobeyed him, entering the Matrix even after he had told her to stay out? If there was a god, was He punishing her?
Zion was also affected. In a matter of days they would be wiped out, all of humanity destroyed. Everyone was depending on Neo, who was wasting away in a coma. If Trinity hadn’t been so numb, she would have gone mad, because there had to have been something she could have done. Or could have not done.
It was that moment, his hand limp in hers, that Trinity was overcome with the sudden urge to hurt him. To squeeze his hand so hard that he would feel it, slap him hard enough for him to feel it, make him feel anything because god knew she could feel it already. In a perfect world he would wake up and everything would be fine, but this world wasn’t perfect. Humanity was enslaved by the machines they created. The world was far from perfect.
“Oh Neo,” she whispered. Wherefore art thou Neo? “I still would have loved you, you didn’t have to be the One.”
She recalled a time in the Matrix when her aunt slipped into a coma after a car crash. The doctors told her family to talk to the woman who wouldn’t respond, that the comatose could hear. “What a bunch of bull.” Trinity had said, flipping through an old magazine in the waiting room (she hadn’t been allowed inside to see her aunt). “They’re only saying that to keep us out of their asses.”
She had harbored so many doubts before she had been freed. Funny how her doubts were now her beliefs, her beliefs doubts. She was living an almost perfect inversion of her old life. So she spoke to Neo, spoke as if she knew he was hearing her, hoping her words would somehow help bring him back to her. “I’m right here,” she said, pressing one hand against his cheek, taking his hand in her other. “Come back to me, follow my voice. I’m right here.” She would also talk to Bane, when she was sure no one else was around. She would curse at him, blaming him for what happened to Neo. She needed someone to blame, it couldn’t have been Neo’s fault. But there was no one else who she could blame, except for Bane.
‘He couldn’t have brought it upon himself. He just couldn’t.’
She dreaded that, and she denied it as best she could, but she could not chase his voice out of her head when he spoke for the last time. “We’re not gonna make it.” “Something’s different.” How did he know? And how did he do what he did – what was it that he did, even? His powers as the One were only useful in the Matrix, the world of computers. He would have no effect on the real world, unless, no, she didn’t want to think of that.
The medics had examined Neo over and over, smiling sad, apologetic smiles at Trinity when they found nothing, or when they had to tell her Neo was showing no signs of improvement. It broke their hearts to see Trinity; dark circles looming beneath her eyes as they strained to hold back the tears threatening to spill at any minute, her face drawn with sadness and guilt. None of them wanted to be the one to tell her it wasn’t likely that Neo would ever wake up.
Trinity was surprised to find Link standing in the doorway when she looked up. Had she been so absorbed in willing life into Neo through his hand that she hadn’t heard the door? Or it might have just been that the doors on this ship were much quieter than the Neb. She held Link’s gaze for a few short seconds before her eyes came back to rest on Neo. “Any news?”
Link took a slow, deep breath. He always hated to tell Trinity bad news – she would always get angry, but this time was even worse. This time she might cry.
“We’re on our way back to Zion. Nothing else they’re gonna do.”
“Bullshit.” Trinity said, placing Neo’s hand gently at his side before rising to her feet, her eyes flaring with anger emphasized by tears sparkling in the corners. “Promise me you’ll stay with him.” She said solemnly, staying by Neo’s side, almost afraid to leave him.
As usual, Link was questioning her plans. He never had any faith in people, and that was what was going to get him killed one day. “What are you gonna do? If you’re planning to-”
“Please.” Trinity cut him off, her voice breaking as she hesitantly stepped away from Neo and closer to Link. She held his gaze, forcing him to stare into her eyes that held nothing but pain and sorrow. “Please, Link, promise me you’ll stay with him.” She wasn’t asking – she could never ask this of anyone for fear of them responding with ‘No.’ She broke eye contact once she was sure she had Link.
He shook his head, looking down at Trinity’s feet, that haunting look in her eyes lingering in his brain. “Yeah, fine, but Morpheus won’t approve.”
“Morpheus will help me.” Although she hadn’t even spoken to her captain since Neo fell, there were some things she just knew. She knew that even though he had been proven wrong by the One himself, but it wouldn’t matter. She knew that there was no prophecy, but that could be overlooked as well because she knew that Morpheus had searched his entire life for Neo and she knew he wasn’t about to let him go without one hell of a fight.
“Morpheus will help me.” She repeated, her voice steadying, and she glanced back at Neo when she spoke again. “I don’t want you to leave him, I can’t leave him alone.”
“As long as I don’t have to hold his hand.” Link smiled – he was one of those rare people whose smiles could tell you everything. Trinity knew his word was true, but in general, he was emotionally weak, using humor in an attempt to re-assure himself that everything would be fine.
Trinity headed to the door, but Link’s strong arms grabbed her and pulled her against his body. She did not pull away or resist. Instead she clutched his shoulders, her own shaking with silent sobs, her head buried in the coarse fabric of his sweater. After she pulled away, took one last look at Neo – possibly her last – and left the room, Link found her tears on his shoulder.