TITLE: Breathe You In
SUMMARY: Trinity opens to the possibilities of becoming
part of Two.
SPOILERS: “The Matrix” and “Matrix: Reloaded”. This is a
fill-in-the-blanks piece that takes place after the cave
scene from “Reloaded”.
AUTHOR’S NOTES: I’m pretty fond of this one. Huge thanks to
my Beta Goddess, spin. And to Danascully for her mid-story
DISCLAIMER: Neo, Trinity, and the world of The Matrix
belong to The Wachowski brothers and the actors who portray
them, not me.
You alternate between perfect unconsciousness and fitful
sleep. Now, as you lay on your back next to me, your body
still for the moment, I once again marvel at just how
beautiful you are. My eyes trace over you, your dark hair
and pale skin, long eyelashes that almost touch the crest
of your cheeks, and the blush of pink that tints your soft
lips. I resist the urge to touch them now, to let my
fingertips brush against them. You need this rest, even if
it will be interrupted any moment now by your own restless
I watch your eyelids and I can see that you’re dreaming. I
want to crawl into those dreams and see the message they
bring to you. You won’t let me in, even for a second, and I
am tortured by the look in your eyes when you wake. You
believe them to be more than dreams, I know, more than
subconscious thought and unconscious desire. You analyze
them constantly, turning each detail over and over again in
your head. They weigh on you. I can see it. Don’t you know
I can see it?
You move next to me again. You turn until your back is
facing me and I can hear your breathing become shallow. You
return to your back, and then turn again, this time until
you are facing me. You want so desperately to sleep, to
rest, even if for just a few short hours. Your body screams
for it. I wish I was plagued with your dreams, I wish I
could bear their burden for you.
You are about to wake up now. I watch your face, watch as
your lips part slightly and your eyelids flutter open. Your
eyes adjust to the dark and you see me before you. My eyes
are shut and you think I’m asleep. My breathing is deep and
even and my body is still, and you are convinced even
further. I can feel you watching me, your eyes studying me.
Am I in your dreams? Do they make you fear for me? I can
feel your worry, it radiates onto me in waves. I know you
want to take me into your arms right now, wrap around me
and keep me safe. But I am safe. Right next to you, I’m
safe. I believe that. What do you know? What do you see? I
wish I could see what you see. I wish I could understand
why you can’t believe it with me.
You move towards me slightly, carefully, and it seems
natural to meet you halfway. So I do. Even in sleep, I know
I would do the same thing; it’s as natural as breathing. I
move until I am pressed against you, my head pillowed on
your chest and your arm hooked around the curve of my hip.
The contact seems to calm us both and I can feel you start
to relax. My mind starts to cloud with sleepiness, thoughts
intertwining and running into one another, and before long,
I’m drifting away into my own dreamless sleep.
I don’t even feel it when you jerk awake once more, slip
out from underneath me, and retreat from the room.
When I’m pulled from my sleep, I see you are gone, but I
can still feel you next to me. I can still feel your warmth
on the sheets. I reach out a hand, letting my open palm run
across that warmth, soaking it in until gooseflesh erupts
across the expanse of my skin. I steal my hand back quickly
until it’s tucked beneath my body, safe.
The responsibility you carry is greater than that of anyone
I have ever known. I know it and understand it, I admire
you for it and I pity you for it. When you look at me, I
see the turmoil within you and I see the determination, but
I also see something that frightens me beyond words. I
don’t even know if you’re conscious of it.
Your path is to be taken alone and while I have the
greatest of faith in you, I wonder if you will allow
yourself to do so. The sadist in me wants to find out. If I
were to get up and leave right now, would you be able to
handle it? Perhaps. Perhaps not. It’s a question that will
never be answered, so I just let the thought float around
in my mind, coming back to it from time to time. It keeps
me in touch with reality.
And I need that connection because it would be so easy to
lose myself in you. I did that once. He was the second
potential we unplugged. He was younger than you, even
younger than me. He was intense and strong and believed
himself to be limitless. He wanted me. He wanted it all.
And he believed he could have it. As the days passed, we
all began to believe it, too. It wasn’t long before I
started shoving the pieces together, turning a blind eye to
small details that didn’t seem to fit. I allowed myself to
fall in love with him and in that instant, sealed his fate.
Maybe I shouldn’t, but I blame myself for his death. I told
him what the Oracle said, just as I told you. He became
unstoppable after that. His actions became shortsighted and
his attitude bordering on arrogant at times. They killed
him with ease in the end and it tore me apart.
I know you are different. Just as I know how to breathe,
how to walk and talk. You seem inherent to me and that’s
the difference. But my guard is still up, just as strong as
it was the day he died, just as strong as it was in the
years following, when we unplugged more potentials. I can
see now how artificial my connection was to them. I was
searching for it, willing it to fruition and as a result, I
distanced myself from them. They all met their demise while
fighting for something they weren’t even sure they believed
yet as I watched from the shadows. I loathed myself after
their deaths, convinced that if I could have been stronger,
they’d still be alive. But there seemed no easy answer, no
simple solution. Damned if you do, damned if you don’t. I
began to think the Oracle was full of shit, that the
prophecy was some parlor trick to distract us from some
Then you came along. When I first saw you, my eyes reading
in the falling code, I felt it. I didn’t want to and fought
it instantly. I was doing a pretty good job of remaining
objective, too, until we unplugged you. Contact with you in
the Matrix was always a challenge, but I constantly
reminded myself of its artificiality and it seemed to be
enough to keep my uncertainties at bay. It wasn’t until I
saw you in front of me, flesh and blood and in the real
world, that I knew everything had changed in some way. It
terrified me. I wanted so badly to give in to simple
optimism, but I had seen too much to indulge in such a
thing. I needed more proof. I wasn’t about to surrender
myself again, to put myself, or you, in a position that
could prove fatal for one, and emotionally suicidal for
I couldn’t stop you from crawling under my skin, though. I
couldn’t stop myself from loving you. And I began to
believe. I knew you were The One, even if you didn’t. The
future had always been a complete unknown, but up to that
point, it had a pattern of regularity that was comforting.
You changed it all. Your presence suddenly turned the
abstract idea of an unknown future into a direct reason to
Yet, I’m still scared. Even as I lie in our bed, wishing
you were next to me, I’m terrified of losing you. My
reliance on you is just as strong as yours on me and I know
that if you were to ever leave, I would shatter beyond
repair. I struggle with the idea of it, trying to convince
myself that I am not a weaker person, or solider, because
of it. I’ve closed myself off for so long, it has become a
habit, so I hope you can bear with me while my heart learns
to work once again.
I hear you enter the room now and a calm spreads over me
from the balls of my feet the tip of my nose. I watch as
you pull your shirt over your head in the dark and feel
your way through the dark until you reach the bed. You
slide under the covers carefully and lie on your back, one
hand reaching out beneath the blankets to rest on my bare
“Still awake,” I say, not ask.
You jump slightly at the sound of my voice and turn your
head until we are face to face.
“Can I help?” I ask.
“No,” you say, after some thought.
“If you ever need anything, you know you can ask me, don’t
“Yeah,” you say. “I know.”
“Okay,” I say.
Your eyes search my face, intruding upon every detail you
see. You open your mouth as if to say something, but close
it again immediately and exhale audibly. I reach up and
curl my fingers around your neck, pulling you towards me
gently. You move until our bodies meet again and a shiver
runs through me as my heated skin presses against your
chilled body. I pull your head down to me still, nesting it
safely in the curve of my neck. Your arm wraps comfortably
around my waist, your hand splayed gently across the small
of my back. In silence, your body warms next to mine and
after just a few minutes, I smile in the darkness as I feel
you fall into what I hope will be a dreamless slumber.
And my resolve melts away just a little more, welcoming you
in, where you belong.