Word Count: 23,000+
Rating: NC-17/ Mature Content
Summary: Eureka plunges into a dark fairytale world where its citizens must figure out the curse of the Red Witch and break the spell in order to get back to their lives. Written for the Marshal Science August Challenge and Musingdarkly/Becca who wanted "anything, hot smut would be a plus". Hope this works ;)
“Read me another one Mom.”
Kevin held up the thick book of fairy tales in Allison’s direction. She took it out of his hand and put it on one of the lab counters. “I've read you four stories already and you need to go to sleep.”
“I can't. Not here.”
“I'm sorry sweetie, but I have to supervise this experiment. No one else was available.” And I wasn’t going to ask Nathan, she thought. Their engagement lasted a couple of weeks before she came to her senses and realized they were never going to go back to happier times and more importantly, it didn’t feel right.
Allison giving back his engagement ring didn’t make her relationship with Nathan any easier – at work or outside of it. Mostly, they’d settled into avoiding each other whenever possible.
The lab was quiet enough and the couch comfortable, so she was fairly sure Kevin could in fact go to sleep there. An eccentric architect had even added a window looking out underneath one of Eureka's larger lakes and the low lights reflecting off of the dark water provided a nice, soothing atmosphere.
“Why can't I stay with Nathan?”
Allison sighed. “We've been over this. It isn't fair for us to keep letting him get close to us when it's not going to change anything.”
“You should marry him again.”
“I can't do that.”
“It wouldn't be for the right reasons.”
“You don’t love him anymore?”
“No it’s not that,” she paused for a moment, searching for the right way to explain it. “When we broke up, I changed, and the person I’ve become isn’t his wife. I'm sorry sweetie, but we don’t fit together anymore and I can’t pretend we do so that he’ll be here for you. It’s not fair to him or me or even to you in the long run.”
“Why do things have to change?” Kevin sulked.
“Life’s about change – anything else is just boring. You can’t fight it and refusing to accept it only makes you miss all the good stuff. It’s like being upset you’ve become a butterfly because you miss being a caterpillar. I know that probably doesn’t make much sense, but it's late and I'm tired,” Allison yawned and stretched. “Maybe someday it will make more sense to you.”
Keven fell silent and Allison turned her attention back to monitoring the data stream from the hyperfusion reaction currently running. She had just found a working rhythm again and Kevin’s breathing deepened enough to indicate he was drifting off when a clattering somewhere out in the hall made them both jump.
“What was that?”
“I don't know, but don’t worry. I'll call security to check it out.” Allison walked over and locked the door from the inside before sitting on the couch next to Kevin and tucking him in. “Now I want you to close your eyes and go to sleep.”
Beverly hurried down the hall, hiding in one of the many dark niches that seemed to be scattered around the Global Dynamics whenever she heard someone approaching. Dropping the grate when coming out of the ventilation system had been clumsy of her, but she managed to secure it convincingly enough before a guard came to check out the scene. The security at Global Dynamics was still appallingly simple to get around once you knew a few codes and their standard procedures. She made it all the way down to Level 5 without any more incidents.
“I.D.” The security guard demanded.
Beverly handed him a stolen ID card and smoothly jabbed him with a needle lined with enough poison to immediately knock him out. The other guard's first instinct was to try to help her partner, giving Beverly the perfect opportunity to get her too. “Entirely too easy,” she quipped as she entered in the stolen pass codes and applied the forged hand print film to the reader screen.
Beverly and her connections were tired of trying to go through intermediaries. She planned on getting to the bottom of the mystery surrounding the artifact once and for all. And now she had the perfect tool to accomplish her goal. Once she suited up and entered the long chamber which led to the artifact, she affixed the blinking round mechanism to one of the curved walls.
“Thank you Dr. Stark.” It was his invention after all. “Smart, creative. If you weren't so damned repressed you'd be one sexy man.”
Once she was sure the device was operating properly, she pushed the button to open the door between herself and the artifact. Energy pulsated out and she backed up slowly, but when it hit the dream device, it arched out and shot through her within the time it took her to blink.
Beverly could feel memories and experiences pouring out of her and into the energy. Some simple, some violent and some so erotic in nature they made her writhe from invisible touches.
She'd meant for it to work the other way around – for information to flow into her.
Then Beverly felt the energy reach past her, search for a familiar point of contact. In a flash, she felt other memories and thoughts pour into and through her. Ones filled with deceptively innocent dark woods and mythological creatures.
The energy retreated and she was able to sit up enough to look at the artifact. The light of the energy seemed to pull back to the very center of the matrix; then it swept out from the center in a rush.
And then there was darkness.