It's Hard to be a Man

Nov 17, 2009 22:08

Title: It's Hard to be a Man part 4

Author: Alsike

Fandom: X-Men/Criminal Minds x-over

Pairing: Emma Frost/Emily Prentiss

Rating: NC-17

AN/Disclaimer: Not my girls.

Word Count: 1681

Prompt: 028. Anonymous
Apologies: So, everyone was very emphatic that I should continue this piece of trashy porn/melodramatic tragedy. I feel like every segment of this is a different genre. Guess what this section is! (Besides not actually NC-17 at all).

There was something about field prisons that was timeless, thought Emily, as she leaned weakly against the rough slats of the wall, clutching her twisted arm to her chest. The straw was dirty and ground down underneath her, and the bitterly cold air blew through her, making her cough. Coughing hurt her chest, but the convulsions made her arm scream in pain. The bleeding had stopped, but it was red and swollen around the wound and she knew too well that it could be a death sentence if it went untreated for too long.

They had picked her up out of a mess of shrapnel, seen her insignia, and taken the bet that they could sell her back. It wasn’t likely. Emily sighed and tried to get comfortable with her arm throbbing and shivering with the cold.

“Hey sergeant.”

Emily glanced up, it was a man she didn’t know, black, with half a leg missing, but smiling. “Hey.”

He dropped what felt like an old officer’s topcoat on her. “Looking chilly over here.”


He shoved his stick away and plopped down onto the straw next to her. “M’name’s Morgan.”


“Prentiss?” He cocked his head as if trying to remember something. “Nope, haven’t heard it before. So, what day was it the last you saw camp?”

Emily blinked. “What?”

Morgan made a face. “No way to tell day or night after a while. I’ve been in here three years, give or take six months. But I can only judge by the dates others give me.” He pointed to the topcoat. “He was the last one, said it was August.”

Emily felt confused for a moment. “It’s January now.” Or was it? How long had she been unconscious? How long had been the bumpy wagon ride over alien ground?

“Yeah? What year?”

Emily felt for her pocket. There was a lump there. They hadn’t taken her wallet. She pulled it out and opened it. It didn’t hold much, but it had the important thing, the latest photo she had received from Emma, a pretty dark haired child, actually looking at the camera this time, her eyes wide and dark. The date and time were automatically recorded in the corner. Morgan looked over her shoulder, staring at the picture in the dim light.

“Who’s that?”

“My…” Emily wasn’t sure how to answer. Did it matter what a prisoner knew? Did it matter what anyone knew now that she was so likely to die? “My daughter.”

“She looks like you.”

Emily laughed. “Don’t curse her with that!”

Morgan smiled and moved the picture to see the ones behind it, more of the baby; one of Emily’s mother, stern and formal; and a scrap torn out of her cadet yearbook, a sullen pale-eyed girl in a uniform. Morgan looked at it carefully, but didn’t say anything. “I always wanted a little one, never had the opportunity. But… bringing one into this world at war…”

Emily nodded slowly. “I believe it will be over in not too long. They were already starting to give orders to not burn and destroy the cities.”

Morgan shook his head. “Perhaps, but how quickly can you end a war that’s been going on for twenty years. Even if it does end, so many have been lost. How could you risk being lost to her?”

Emily laughed weakly. “She won’t miss me. She doesn’t need me. She has two parents, two good parents. I was going to leave no matter what.”

Morgan stared at her. “You want to miss it all?”

Emily tried to swallow down her response, but it was a heavy lump in her throat and wouldn’t go. She clutched her arm even more tightly, wishing the physical pain had any prominence over the other kind. “No,” she made out, it was half a sob. “But I’m never going back. I won’t make it out of here alive.”

* * *

That night the fever hit, and Morgan yelled for the guards. The doctor there took a scalpel and slit her arm down its length, squeezing out pus and ooze. He let it bleed into a bucket, doused it in burning alcohol, then wrapped it, and left her.

She tossed and turned, sweating in nightmares and pain, for days. She dreamt, about monsters, about the dead she had seen, about stepping into that gene resequencer, her body turning and changing, dripping like jelly through the floors, heating up until it exploded.

And she dreamt about Emma, about taking it back, her pride, or whatever it was that was gone, her hands on her throat as she slid inside, so deeply, and raking her fingernails down her body. She needed to leave bruises and marks, to mark her possession. Emma fought her, scratching and biting, and then she turned and there was a knife in her hand. Emily pulled away, protecting herself, and the tip entered at her shoulder and split her apart.

And she woke up. Her arm was bandaged, though tender down to right above her elbow. She couldn’t feel it past there. She staggered to her feet, smelt the room, and had to vomit, not that there was much coming up. She leaned against the door and banged and yelled as best she could without breathing in.

No one came. She leaned miserably against the door, the dead weight of her arm pulling her down. She cried, just wanting to go home.

* * *

It was months before Emily healed. Morgan had been in the prison the longest and he was friendly with the guards as well as the fellow prisoners. The other prisoners tended to keep to themselves. The high rank ones waiting to be ransomed, the low ranks hating everyone else. Emily didn’t have any illusions about being ransomed. She just tried to regain her strength. If she wasn’t going to die from this injury, she wasn’t going to die in this prison.

Morgan was cheerful enough to keep anyone’s spirits up, but he loved to ask her about Sofia. He was shocked when she told him that she had shipped out only a month after she was born, and then he had wriggled the whole sordid affair out of her.

“I just want her to be happy, and I know it would be easier if I’m not there.”

Morgan shook his head and wondered which ‘her’ she was talking about. She tended to blur them or skip from one to another without warning and it was only later on that he realized what she had meant. She seemed to think it was more defensible to admit her feelings about the child, but Morgan wondered if she had ever really thought about having children before this whole mess was thrust upon her. He didn’t think she had. He knew well enough what it was like to be embarrassed of it. He had hidden baby magazines in his bunk often enough, but she seemed to have just put the idea away without much consideration like she seemed to put so many ideas away.

“It could be different,” he had said. “When people come, they tell me things that have happened, like Antar being taken, like that new bomb they developed, things that I couldn’t believe. They thought it was obvious, it was their truth, but to me, it was impossible. How could things change like that while I’m here? If we ever get home…”

“Shut up,” Emily hissed. “Do you think I haven’t thought about it? Do you think I haven’t imagined ways in which it could all work out, at another’s expense? Maybe there’s some balance in the world, if I give up something, maybe I’ll get what I really want. You gave up your leg. Is that going to get you anything? Anything but extra danger, possible death, ostracism?”

Morgan shrugged and made a face. “Maybe a pity fuck or two.”

Emily covered her face.

Sex was also an off limits part of the conversation, until it was late at night, and Emily’s arm and the phantom pain in Morgan’s missing leg was keeping them awake.

“I had a girlfriend once,” Morgan said softly. “More than once, I mean, but a real one once. I thought I might marry her when I was ready to settle down. I never told her that, that…” He pursed his lips, “that she, you know. That she was the one. I don’t know what she would have done if I told her. She might have laughed in my face.” He wiggled his eyebrows, and by that time Emily knew that that meant he was such an awesome player that obviously no one would think he was being serious. “But… I don’t know. Maybe it would be better if I knew she missed me.”

Emily leaned back and stared up at the ceiling. “Maybe it would. Maybe it would be worse.”

“If I get back, I think I’ll tell her. If she’s married, whatever, just get it off my chest.”

“You’re such a positive thinker.”

Morgan laughed. “So you won’t?”

Emily glanced over, brow furrowed. “Won’t what?”

“Won’t tell her?”

Emily stared at him, her eyes just slightly wider than normal, her breathing just slightly too fast.


Morgan just smiled and leaned back against the wall. “Well… my girlfriend, the way I knew she was going to be it, was the sex.”

Emily snorted.

“No, I mean it. Usually you fuck someone, and you enjoy it. It’s their body that’s attractive, that’s distracting, that’s satisfying. And I like to please,” he grinned. “That’s just me, but that’s second. First you’ve got to look out for number one.”

Emily grunted her disagreement.

“Yeah, well not everyone’s a gentleman like you. But with her I just forgot about myself. That’s what’s different, you don’t even think about it, because you’re too busy loving.” He pounded his chest. “It’s sublime.”

Emily rolled her eyes. “Where’d you even learn a word like that?”

“What, you disagree?”

Emily sat quietly for a moment. “No,” she said softly. “No, I don’t disagree.”

criminal minds, nc-17, x-men, citrus taste, emma/emily

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