She didn’t know how it happened, just that one second they were being carried away to the past and the next they were being spat out of the portal and onto the streets of… well, not their hometown. Vanya was starting to drift into consciousness, and Allison was thankful that she wouldn’t be lugging her unconscious body around.
“Allison, where are we?” she whimpered, and she grabbed Vanya, holding her to her chest protectively. “What happ—“ Once Allison caught sight of her face, she let her go, stepping away while Vanya vomited all over the pavement, clutching her ear.
Fuck. Her ear.
“Can you hear me?” Allison asked. Or, at least that’s what she’d intended. It came out as a bunch of guttural noises, and she remembered, with horror, that she couldn’t speak.
Well, if she’d caused Vanya to lose her hearing, at least this would truly be the most optimal timing to have lost her voice.
Vanya seemed to remember just as Allison attempted speech that she couldn’t speak anymore, and her wide, brown eyes filled with remorse. She reached out to squeeze Vanya’s hand, letting her know that she’d forgiven her. There had been a chance to kill her, and she hadn’t taken it. It only made sense for her to choose forgiveness now, even though she wished she could actually say that out loud.
“What do we do?” Vanya said, glancing around. “Also, am I allowed to hug you because I’m really stressed and could use—”
A small, sweet, disgruntled noise escaped Vanya as Allison embraced her, and then they pulled away, figuring out what they were supposed to do.
The option was chosen for them, before they could. As soon as Vanya heard a man yelling something awful, indicating to them when they were, at least that they were in the past, Allison realized what was about to happen. Her life was flashing before her eyes, the mental image of Claire—
“He’s dead,” Vanya chirped, sounding way too excited of the fact. “And… we should probably run.”
Grabbing tightly onto her hand, they ran. Allison wanted to either throttle Five or find a way to steal his powers. Based on the fashion they were seeing as they darted through the streets, something of a force-field hovering over them from Vanya, they were in the 60s. The accents all indicated that they were in the south.
Eventually, they were both struggling to stand, but they’d managed to find a somewhat hidden place, surrounded by thick trees near a highway. Allison was surprised to find her writing pad in her jacket, and she scribbled a note quickly for her.
You think we’ll get run over?
“No? We’ll hide away from the cars. Hopefully, Five will—”
Don’t count on it. He fucked up enough for all of us to be spread out.
She raised her brows, opening her mouth to argue.
He could be dead.
Vanya closed her mouth, letting her write with a distressed expression. Vaguely, Allison remembered how close those two had been, that he’d pretty much been her only friend.
Let’s hope he’s not.
They lay back, holding each other’s hands. Allison didn’t comment when Vanya cuddled up to her side, wrapping her arms around her, listening to Vanya hum softly to them. She remembered something, shifting them just a little.
How is your hearing?
A small frown crossed the woman’s features, and Allison just then realized how pallid her skin was, how she’d clearly been trying to resist squinting up her features and giving away that she was in pain.
Most shocking of all was the blood coating her white suit.
Vanya tipped her head to the side, revealing where all the blood had come from. “This ear is ringing,” Vanya explained. “And I’m betting that I’ll lose all hearing in it before F— before we see anybody we know. Though my hearing is still pretty strong in the other, so… Hopefully, my powers aren’t fucked over. That would… suck.”
Clearly, she was trying to avoid talking about what had happened with Allison’s powers.
I don’t care if you talk about it, you know. I’ve forgiven you.
Taking her back into her arms, needing the comfort of her body when they were all alone in a time they’d never experienced before, she nodded.
They found a non-temporary shelter two weeks later. Or well, they were squatting in an abandoned home, seemingly in the middle of nowhere.
Feels like we’re going to get murdered by Leatherface if we stay here.
Vanya grinned. “I don’t think that movie has even come out yet.
Wasn’t it inspired by true events?
“I think we could handle a serial killer, with my powers and your training.”
Allison didn’t argue, mainly because she’d killed plenty of people in her Academy days. Plus, Vanya was right. Even with her powers only at half capacity, she could still likely protect them from anybody. Assuming she didn’t get drugged by anyone.
“If Five doesn’t hurry his ass up, I might kill him too,” Vanya grumbled, cheeks pink. Allison wondered if she was about to start ranting about him, not ever having been forced to experience girl talk before and sincerely hoping that this wouldn’t be the first time. Instead, Vanya started searching the place for non-perishables, tossing cans aside that looked tampered with in the slightest. Eventually, she found two cans of sliced peaches, handing Allison a knife that Vanya had found three days ago, having immediately started waving it around excitedly like, ‘Look! I can provide for us too!’
Remembering all of the breakfasts spent hearing survivalist recordings, Allison worked at the cans until they were both open, giving one to Vanya, who had no shame in slurping out the juices, looking vaguely like a feral, homeless cat that had pilfered food from a trash can.
Two weeks ago, Allison probably wouldn’t have found the way she was eating so endearing.
Are you enjoying yourself?
“‘Course I am. This is the first thing I’ve eaten all day, and, without my meds causing a stomach ache, I’m fucking starving.”
Sincerely, she hoped that she wasn’t experiencing Vanya having some sort of breakdown. This was the first day she hadn’t appeared to be experiencing the symptoms of withdrawal, though, which was a blessing.
Gingerly, Allison stabbed a peach slice, lifting it to her mouth. Vanya watched her nibble at it delicately, snorting before tossing a few back without any grace. She’d never seen Seven eat like this, her memories supplying images of her shoving around her food. When Five and Six had been around, they’d often take a few bites from her, offering her a quick, reassuring smile. Maybe this was some sort of protest against them, which she’d love the two of them to see. Not only did someone need to humble Five, but she’d kill to see any of the people they’d grown up with about now.
Don’t murder me in my sleep. I haven’t done a single thing wrong to you.
Vanya giggled, and Allison wondered if she’d somehow found some liquor, realizing that her breath smelled a little—
Are you drunk?
“Just a little bit.”
And you didn’t share?
Reaching into her suit pocket, she produced a bottle that looked delicately crafted, like most things had at this time and before. “Found it last week. Originally, I did intend to share with you, but I think I deserve a drink, you know?”
Allison rolled her eyes, tossing back the liquid and not wincing or making a face, mainly because she was trying so hard to show no reaction whatsoever, thinking Vanya might judge her if she did. She’d become hyper-aware of everything she did around Vanya, and she didn’t care to think about why. There was a very glaringly obvious reason, one that would likely clearly explain why she’d been able to forgive her so easily, but she knew that if she started to analyze it, she’d only stress herself out for no reason.
“What’s wrong?” Vanya asked, reaching for her hand. She didn’t let her face react, then, either.