Je Ne Regrette Rien



Scene Title Je Ne Regrette Rien
Synopsis Remi is woken up to klaxons and flashes of another life.
Date December 25, 2018

Ark Brig

Klaxons sound out, ensuring that nobody is getting any sleep tonight. The telepath hasn’t been sleeping well, but the sound pulls her from the light sleep she was almost enjoying.

But it feels like something is happening.

The telepath pokes her head out of the pile of blankets she’s been using as a cocoon for the past few days, blue eyes glowering up at the ceiling. There are no watches or clocks in here to indicate the time — but she knows it’s late at night, at least.

If all goes well, tomorrow she’ll be let out of this cage — only to be released into another cage, but this cage is at least bigger, from what she hears. One hand frees itself from the blankets, reaching up to rub at her forehead, and —

Everything hurts.

Everything hurts, especially below the waist.

Remi is exhausted, laying in a mess of sheets and towels soaked in blood, sweat, and amniotic fluid. Her breathing is still heavy, sweat still glistens upon her brow, and she feels like all of her energy came out along with all of that bodily fluid that will need to be cleaned up later.

But none of that matters. None of it matters. Blearry eyes focus on the form of Jaiden, her rock, the man who has always been by her side, through all of it. Love spreads through her for him, but it’s dwarfed by the tiny little bundle that he gently hands off to her.

Looking down at the tiny little person that she and Graeme created, Remi can’t help but burst into tears. Instinctively, she guides the child to her breast for her first meal, one hand gently stroking the delicate forehead of the tiny little creature even as tears stream down her cheeks. “Mon dieu, tu es si belle que ça fait mal…” She whispers to the little girl, dipping her head down to kiss the child’s head and inhale her daughter’s smell.

After losing herself for a moment, she turns her eyes up toward Jaiden, smiling. “Victoria Jessamyn Cormac-Davignon.” She gives the girl a name, first. As Jaiden rubs her back, she turns her gaze back down to the little girl. “It’s so wonderful to meet you, ma petite danseuse. I love you so much already. Your papa will be excited to meet you, too.”

Blue eyes open, and suddenly Remi sits up, clutching the blankets that are cocooning her with one hand while the other darts to her abdomen. That was — it felt real. The pain in her lower half, the feeling of the tiny person against her chest, the rush of hormones sending her into a state of elation — it felt like she was there. She never thought she would want children, but that felt real, and she was filled with a joy like she had never known before.

She brings her knees up to her chest, still bundled in her blankets, staring silently at her prison cell. She shivers despite the warm blankets around her, looking up toward the ceiling. She was so happy, despite the pain, despite the fact that this Graeme fellow wasn’t present, and she loved this Jaiden fellow about as much as she loved Jasper.

She closes her eyes —

Today has been a long time coming.

The war was long and difficult. Kabetogama was cold and miserable, and sometimes it was downright lonely. It was safe, away from everything, but that same quality that made it a great place to raise Tori also made it a lonely place. But through all of it, and even before that, Jaiden was always her rock. He made it warm with his presence, his embraces, and his ever-present kindness.

The bride-to-be stares at her reflection in the mirror, a modest yet extravagantly stylish white gown from her family’s fashion design company. It hugs her frame just right in just the right places. Her hair has been expertly styled. Her makeup done by a professional.

The years haven’t been perfect for Remi and Jaiden, which is why it’s important to her that she look perfect for him today.

Happiness again. Hope and relief and joy. Remi shudders, clutching the blankets closer to herself and tucking her face against her knees. She wishes she could stay there in these strange visions she’s having —

Remi watches fondly from around the corner as the 15-month-old Tori is carried down the aisle by Graeme, her father helping his daughter to litter the ground with petals. She chooses to fling the flowers at the guests rather than at the ground, occasionally chattering to her dad in toddler gibberish and shoving a handful of petals into his face and mouth.

The momentary distraction of her daughter is interrupted by the closing of the door, and then Remi is being ushered to her father’s side. She peers up at the man who she has finally reconnected with after all these years, smiling warmly up at him as she places her hand at the crook of his arm.

And then the doors are open, and everyone is looking at her, but she doesn’t see any of them — there’s just the tunnel vision, with Jaiden standing up there, looking so handsome. It all feels so strange and outside of her, but so right at the same time.

The love that she feels for this man can almost be felt by those gathered to witness their union, the joy that they’re finally making this official — it’s almost palpable. She’s going to marry her best friend, and she couldn’t be happier.

With a squeeze to her hand from her father, Remi starts walking slowly, one foot over the other, to the man who has always been her destiny.

“Papa,” Remi gasps into the dark of her room, tears springing to her eyes. She never did find out what happened with her parents — the Sayonara was a good ship, but she wasn’t big or strong enough to make an overseas journey to France, and so Remi’s connection to her parents was severed when the water came.

And that Jaiden fellow — she loved him, and he loved her. She could tell by the way he smiled at her, they were soul mates. A man she’s never met, and yet, for just a short period of time, she loved him, with every fiber of her being.

She shrugs the blankets off, putting her hands on either side of her on the bed and staring at the far wall. These visions need to stop soon — she doesn’t like it at all, even if they are glimpses of happier times —

Staring down at the still figure within the casket, Remi can’t help the tears streaming down her cheeks. Her father’s passing has been almost debilitating — she was never entirely close to the man, but they had gotten past their differences.

He was a good father. He was an even better grandfather to Victoria, who he clearly loved more than life itself. She was that great equalizer, the glue that held Remi and her father together. The day he met her was magical.

But he never told her that his lungs were failing him. It wasn’t until it was too late that she found out — and then, nothing could be done but to hold his hands as he went, watching him suffer until his last breath with no shortage of tears in her eyes.

It’s not fair. She finally got her father back, only to have him torn away again.

The woman reaches out, gently trailing her fingers over the man’s brow line. “Je suis désolé pour tout, mon père. Tu es avec maman maintenant. J'espère que vous vous complétez comme vous l'avez fait quand j'étais petit.“ She cups his cheek gently, the skin cold and stiff. This isn’t him any more. This is just a corpse, and the man who once resided within the corpse is long gone.

And then, she can’t handle it any longer. She turns, sinking into Jaiden’s arm and letting out a quiet sob into his chest.

This time, she can’t hold the sob in, her hand clapping over her mouth as she sits on the side of the bed, tears streaming down her face. She wasn’t ready for that — she wasn’t ready to see her father dead. It’s almost more than she can handle, knowing that, in this world she’s suddenly seeing glimpses of, not one but both of her parents are dead.

Rubbing the tears away from her eyes, Remi makes her way over to the sink in her little prison suite, turning on the cold water and splashing it over her face. It’s not real. That’s not really her life. So she shouldn’t get herself so worked up over this —

It still hurts like crazy, but this time it’s different. It’s a pain she’s felt before, yes, and everything aches from the effort she just went through. This time, it’s in a hospital bed, and there are professionals attending to her, and there is so much less fear than there was the first time.

It doesn’t make this moment any less special. The tiny bundle in her arms, with a shock of vibrant red hair atop her head, is absolutely beautiful. And her father standing next to her, his strong arm draped gently over her shoulder as they both marvel at this amazing little creature they created. Even Tori is in on this moment, the three year old’s tiny little body tucked against her mother’s as she, too, joins in on the act of marveling at her beautiful little sister.

“Bienvenue dans le monde, ma petite Lisette Ophelie. Nommé d'après ma chère amie Elisabeth, j'attends de grandes choses pour vous. Tu es tellement aimé…” She coos this gently to the infant, stroking her head. What she wouldn’t give for Elisabeth to be here, to see her little girls. All the same, life is so…so wonderful in this moment.

Remi finds herself on the floor, hugging herself, shivering. “Why is this happening to me?!” She asks this of the walls, tears streaming down her cheeks. She can’t even mourn in peace all by herself — her mind has to assault her with these visions of some other life where she had a family and friends, where she had a wonderful, loving husband and two beautiful children.

Where she was happy. Because here, she isn’t. Here is a prison, in not so many words. She can wander around as she wishes, yes, but it’s no better than the walls and fences of a prison. Here is —

“Non, rien de rien, non, je ne regrette rien,” Remi sings quietly as she drives — she could probably pull the song up on her phone and play it over the speakers, but that would be dangerous while driving — and sometimes, one just wants to sing. She’s eager to get home, to see her little girls. Lisette is walking now, and has started speaking pretty regularly, and Tori is the happiest big sister she’s ever seen.

Blue eyes flit up to the rearview mirror, just in time to see the motorcycle rider trailing behind her pull something out from behind his back. She blinks concernedly, reaching out with her ability, only to hear calculations of speed and distance. Then, she’s sending one of those awful telepathic shrieks of hers out to all within range, and there is a loud explosion sound, and her world is tumbling around and upside down, and the airbag is smashing into her face, and glass shards are glimmering around her like little stars.

Pain echoes through her entire body — her arms and hands are broken, possibly some ribs, and she is pretty sure her legs are crushed. She can only reach out to her assailant, trying to search for why this is all happening — why won’t she be able to go home to her daughters and husband tonight?

Because they were given a task.

There’s blood in her eyes, and her body is broken already, but Remi watches in terror as the gun rises. There isn’t much time left. Her mind reaches out, digging in with every last bit of strength that Remi has, pulling any information about her attacker out that she can manage. It’s vague, and it’s confusing, and she can only hope that whoever is a recipient of this last desperate call for help will assist. She’s not going to survive this — she already knows that. She’ll not get to go home and hug her children after all, which is all that she wants right now.

So she will leave what she can so her little girls can have the justice they deserve, losing their mother at such an early age. Little Lisette…will Lisette even remember her? Tori will remember her, vaguely. Both of them will grow up without her. And Jaiden…Jaiden will be destroyed by the loss of another love. Graeme…who knows how he’ll respond.

With the last of her strength, the telepath flings information into the minds that she has within her range, bits and pieces exploding out from her mind like the bomb that took out her fancy Land Rover. Aquila is the only name she can pull. A grimy, somewhat vague reflection of a man shaving in a mirror. A nearly endless stretch of road, roaming off through the desert, ripples of heat waving off the surface of the asphalt. The bare, attractive legs of a woman, with the hands of Remi’s murderer upon them as morning light filters through a window. A door, barred shut.

The saddest part about dying is thinking about those you will leave behind.

She sees the muzzle flare to life, hears the loud explosion of the bullet from the barrel, and then —

The light on the bathroom counter suddenly snaps back into existence as Remi returns to herself with a sharp gasp. Her hands find their way to her face, to her ribs, to her legs — all in tact, no injuries but the ones she received in the sinking of the Sayonara. The pain is gone, but the memory of it lingers, fading slowly. The klaxons have stopped by now, too.

After taking a moment to recover, the former starlet slowly raises to her feet, brushing the debris off of her legs and back and turning to look at her reflection in the mirror — her eyes are tired and bloodshot, her skin pale, and she’s lost a bit of weight due to her mourning fast. She’s a pathetic shadow of herself.

And she’s letting them win by remaining in this state.

She turns toward the shower, flipping the cold water on with a frown. “Tu es pathétique, Soleil.” With a frown, she removes her clothing, discarding it on the floor; there’s clean clothing set out for her that she never bothered changing into, and she’s not done more than rinsing off the blood from their first night here.

With a sound of discomfort, Remi slips under the cold stream of water, giving herself a quick scrub and washing her hair as quickly as she possibly can, before all but leaping out of the cold water, her skin bumpy with goose pimples.

After gathering a towel around herself and wrapping her head in another, she turns to stare at the mirror again, shaking her head. Jasper wouldn’t want her to mourn him like this. Geneva would probably make some rude remark. “Votre comportement est inacceptable. Arrêtez-vous bien cette minute.”

She’ll be out tomorrow, and Liz has a task for her — an important one, and she needs to have her wits about her.

With the images of her own death still lingering in the back of her mind, Remi redresses herself before climbing back under the blankets. She will sleep, and then she will get out of here, and then she will figure out how to get herself and everyone out of here.

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