Shop Forum More Submit  Join Login
She stays in the Gallery.  She knows she could leave; he wouldn't stop her.  She could return to the world above, heal, perhaps live for a time, and die there.  She doesn't fear this inevitability, but she does recognize the uselessness of it.  There is nothing for her in that world.  There hasn't been for some time.  Here, she has herself – someone previously unknown whom she can nurture and discover in this in-between place.  There is nothing to fear here; she's been shown that.  This place will be whatever she makes of it.

And so she stays.

*

He wakes, rises, goes through the motions of his morning ablutions and is halfway to the dressing area before he remembers - she is free.  He doesn't have to do this anymore.

His hand flies to the wall to steady himself and he nearly weeps for joy.

*

She barely ever sees him.  The Gallery is silent except for her footsteps as she wanders, gradually regaining the endurance to be on her feet longer than a few minutes at a time.  Circuit after circuit is made through the stone hallways, each one a bit longer than the last.  The Shadow Gallery seems huge and yet smaller to her now in the wake of her transformation.  She passes doors, occasionally opening them to see what lies beyond.  None are locked.

None of them are ever locked.

*

It occurs to him that there is no fresh food in the kitchen.  There wasn’t a need for it - for either of them - in the prison.   Neither of them seems to miss it now.

That thought is suddenly inordinately disturbing.

*

She has healed now to the point at which hunger is a separate sensation once again rather than a constant undertone.  She is returning to solid food and can now muster the energy to prepare simple meals for herself.  Nearly every time she goes to the kitchen, something new awaits her.  Fresh bread.  An herbal tea.  

Once she even finds strawberries.

*

"Good Morning," he manages to say to her.  And "Good Evening."  "Pardon me," if they pass in a hallway.  Even a "Bless you" once for a sneeze.  

Small, safe sounds.  Empty and horrible.

*

The language of the everyday has become foreign and wrong-sounding to her.  "The pantry is out of sugar," she says, and the syllables crash together in awkward dissonance.   There seems to be no language for the words that truly need saying.  

At least not one she can master.

*

He won't say it.  To say "I'm sorry" would be expressing regret for his actions, and he has none.  Looking on her now, he is captivated by her strength.  It was always there, hiding under layers of fear and neglect, crying out to be released.  He could sense it, every day since that first night when the Fingermen cornered her.  That tiny spark in her eyes was there even then, pulling him to her.  He showed her how to see that spark in herself, just as he himself had been shown.  Now it burns, not in fleeting starts, but steady and strong.  

But he still knows what he did to her was wrong.  

*

She thinks she hears him as she passes his room.  A single gasping breath, tinged with the faintest trace of his voice, cut short.  Pain, stifled.  She could go in… this door, like the others, is unlocked.  She could confront him.

She doesn't.

*

He stands before the jukebox, fingers hovering over the keys.  He wants something to fill the silence.  Something to reflect some fragment of what he's feeling.  Something besides the voices in his head.

Twelve mute minutes pass.  He walks away, defeated.

*

She notices books in new places.  Poetry, essays, novels… Rich, beautiful tapestries of words chronicling lives, dreams, tragedies, triumphs.  Observations, laments, anecdotes all speak to her in their whispering voices.

In his voice, for she recognizes his attempt at contact.

*

He blinks, and the Blake painting is suddenly before him.  He is standing, fully dressed, with no memory of how he came to be there and no awareness of how much time has passed.  He looks about him; mercifully, he is alone.  Keeping alert for any sign of Evey he sets off for his room and reaches it without further incident.

It’s begun.  He has less time than he thought.



~ Finis ~

Sequel to "Questions", leads up to "Gifts". It seemed to make sense at the time.




[Obligatory Disclaimer: I claim no ownership of anything except the words I have written. The characters and their universe are their own.]
Add a Comment:
 
:iconewigestudentin:
ewigestudentin Featured By Owner Mar 24, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I think it's my favorite from the whole series.
Love its mosaic-like structure and the fitting title. Love the pain they both are in - you have the most wonderful way with words, just like with your pencils. Love the feeling of foreboding from the last bit.

Did you have a particular Black painting in mind? I am afraid I am missing the significance :blush:
Reply
:iconfuguestate:
FugueState Featured By Owner Apr 11, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
This one was fairly clear in my head as I was writing it - one of those stories that made me feel less like I was composing, and more like I was just taking dictation as they went!

I think at the time, I was thinking of what was visible in the Shadow Gallery in the film. I didn't want to mention the Bacon painting for some reason - I think it was because the painting in the film was actually a faux work "inspired" by the painting they couldn't get the rights to(!) - and I may have stumbled upon Blake as an alternative while looking at what other works were visible. I don't think I had a particular work in mind; I just knew that that artist had created several evocative pieces that seemed appropriate. xD
Reply
:iconewigestudentin:
ewigestudentin Featured By Owner Apr 12, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
To my utmost shame, I am completely unfamiliar with the paintings on movie!V's walls :(
I didn't know that they were unable to get the rights for some of them - oops! lol thanks for telling me about that!
Reply
:iconfuguestate:
FugueState Featured By Owner Apr 14, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Nothing to be ashamed of - just think of it as an opportunity to learn a whole lot at once, considering how many paintings are there! ;D Here is an excellent post that identifies a whole bunch of them, if you'd like to check it out. :)
Reply
:iconewigestudentin:
ewigestudentin Featured By Owner Apr 15, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Oooooh! THANK YOU so much!
*gobbles up the knowledge*
Reply
:iconsmoppet:
Smoppet Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2011
This a very beautifully written piece! Lovely job.
Reply
:iconfuguestate:
FugueState Featured By Owner Aug 6, 2011  Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you very much - I'm glad you enjoyed it :)
Reply
:iconsmoppet:
Smoppet Featured By Owner Aug 6, 2011
No problem! (:
Reply
:iconangelstained:
angelStained Featured By Owner Apr 4, 2011   Writer
You've got a simple but unique style. Also, it's great how you paced this little story.
Reply
:iconfuguestate:
FugueState Featured By Owner Apr 6, 2011  Hobbyist General Artist
Thanks! :)
Reply
:iconsorairo:
Sorairo Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2009
I've been catching up on your stories lately and they're all beautiful <3 You have a wonderful way with words :) I look forward to more! And your lovely sketches!
Reply
:iconfuguestate:
FugueState Featured By Owner May 24, 2009  Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you!! :aww:
Reply
:iconaoluas:
Aoluas Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2009
I don't come on Deviant Art to read, partly because I have other sites for that, partly because what I've read before has often disappointed me. But this.
This is superb.
It's a beautiful, painful, sorrowful, accurate representation of what it must have been like for Evey and V to live together after her imprisonment. I love it.
Reply
:iconfuguestate:
FugueState Featured By Owner Feb 21, 2009  Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you! :thanks: It's always frustrated me that this transition wasn't covered in either the film or the GN. (of course, that just leaves it open for us to fill in! ;) )
Reply
:iconwibskelds9:
WibSkelDS9 Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2009  Hobbyist General Artist
Wow, that was beautiful. A befitting interlude. Keep up the good work; I'll be rooting for you! :w00t!:
Reply
:iconfuguestate:
FugueState Featured By Owner Feb 21, 2009  Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you! :aww:
Reply
:iconswords-and-bandages:
Swords-and-Bandages Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2009  Hobbyist Writer
How thin the veneer that separates the fighter from the man. How deep the flesh the man possesses which encases his ideas, those amorphous yet bulletproof masses over which not even death can assert power.

Humanity is a masquerade. It's painful to become so bonded with your mask that you don't know how to deal with what's underneath anymore.
Reply
:iconfuguestate:
FugueState Featured By Owner Feb 21, 2009  Hobbyist General Artist
Agreed. I'm glad my story was able to bring out that thought. :thanks:
Reply
:iconswords-and-bandages:
Swords-and-Bandages Featured By Owner Feb 21, 2009  Hobbyist Writer
Very nicely written, I must say.
Reply
:iconsnurtz:
snurtz Featured By Owner Feb 15, 2009  Student Writer
You have such a masterful power over the English language, and you use it beautifully. I love the whole setup of it, in short, little vignettes, and your descriptions are unique yet fitting, and for that reason, they stand out. =D I love it!
Reply
:iconfuguestate:
FugueState Featured By Owner Feb 21, 2009  Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you very much :hug: I keep wanting to unravel this period in their timeline, and I'm allllmost there now!
Reply
:iconwhimsysmile:
WhimsySmile Featured By Owner Feb 13, 2009  Professional Writer
Very beautiful. Very powerful! You do a great job at filling in the gaps with your own personal touch. You have a wonderful gift.
Reply
:iconfuguestate:
FugueState Featured By Owner Feb 15, 2009  Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you very much :thanks:
Reply
:iconwhimsysmile:
WhimsySmile Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2009  Professional Writer
:XD:! Welcomes!
Reply
:iconpiratephantom:
PiratePhantom Featured By Owner Feb 13, 2009  Student Writer
:heart: loved it
Reply
:iconfuguestate:
FugueState Featured By Owner Feb 15, 2009  Hobbyist General Artist
I'm glad :aww:
Reply
:iconjkthedragon:
jkthedragon Featured By Owner Feb 12, 2009
This is beautiful! I think it's worth mentioning that, because I watch so many people, I forgot that you're the V for Vendetta fan and I didn't realize that this was fanfiction until I got to Evey's name. Until then, reading through it in the context of two unknown characters in an unknown situation, it was equally beautiful as when I reread it in context. Excellent work. :D
Reply
:iconfuguestate:
FugueState Featured By Owner Feb 12, 2009  Hobbyist General Artist
Oh wow - thank you very much for such a wonderful compliment! :)
Reply
:iconjkthedragon:
jkthedragon Featured By Owner Feb 12, 2009
No problem. :aww:
Reply
Add a Comment:
 
×

:iconfuguestate: More from FugueState



More from DeviantArt



Details

Submitted on
February 12, 2009
File Size
5.1 KB
Thumb

Stats

Views
627
Favourites
8 (who?)
Comments
29

License

Creative Commons License
Some rights reserved. This work is licensed under a
Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.
×