Title: Body Warmth is the Best Defence Against the Cold
Author: GrinningRandomElf. That's me! *points to self*
Summary: After the war, Trinity and Neo have some trouble in their relationship. It's up to Trinity to take action, and the consequences are far better than anything she could have imagined. Fluffy, fuzzy feel-good thing.
Disclaimer: If I owned the Matrix, I would not be writing fanfic, I would be making movies and lots of money. Since I am writing fanfic, one must conclude that I do not own the Matrix. The film/character/story rights go to the Wachowski brothers, and WB. I own nothing in this fic except the plot. And Feather. Also any caffienated beverages mentioned. *Wanders off to look for coffee*
Rating: PG, for sexual references. It's an almost-tasteful fade-to-black and some smutty pillow talk, but it's definitely there.
Spoilers: Post-Reloaded. Spoilers are minor, but there.
Author's notes: Ah, romance. What we have here is a little N/T fluff. I've tried my best to keep them in character while injecting as much sugar as I deem safe into the story, and now send it out for consumption of the fans at large. Please tell me what you think.
The ship was never silent, Trinity mused quietly. Even in the dead of the 'night' when most of the crew was asleep, the mechanical sounds continued - humming, clanking, buzzing. Silence was unnatural. Silence meant that everything - including the essential life support and heating systems - had been shut down, and that could only mean one thing: sentinels.
Not that that had happened recently. Since the invasion of the machines into Zion had failed and all the attackers been destroyed, not one ship had reported any altercation with any form of machine, not even having to hide from a sweep. The analysts in Zion estimated that over ninety-five percent of the machine forces had been destroyed. This news had been some balm to the Zionites - thirty thousand had been killed fending off the invaders, which meant that nobody was unaffected.
The rebuilding had taken months, but Trinity had missed most of it - she had been in hospital, convalescing. During the final battle, she and Neo had volunteered for the front line. Though they were standing barely inches apart, fate decreed that she was the one standing in the way of the collapsing section of roof, while he remained relatively unscathed. C'est la vie.
The mess hall of the Nebuchadnezzar II was empty at this hour. It was the middle of the 'night' - the graveyard shift when you were either on duty or in bed, sleeping. Or one other activity between consenting adults, which was of course the problem.
She sighed and curled her legs up to her chest, grunting with pain as the movement pulled at the wounds in her left thigh. She held the position for a moment longer, and the pain slowly faded to a dull ache. She could live with a dull ache. Massive injuries to left leg. May have to amputate. Don't you dare, said Neo. She had been mercifully unconscious at that point, but Link had told her. He hadn't let them take her leg. Severe damage to internal organs. She's bleeding internally. Severe concussion, possible brain damage. By rights, she should be dead. Her brains should have fallen out her ears from that knock on the head. They hadn't understood it, how her ruined body had held together the way it had, nor how she had healed up so fast. Neo, of course. He had held her together and made her heal. And now, now he wouldn't even...
"Why aren't you in bed?" She glanced up. Morpheus, looking tired. He had his father-face on tonight, not captain-face. She knew he often couldn't sleep, and wandered the ship compulsively. It was just another night-noise to get used to. She slept better feeling like he was watching over her. Or she had slept better.
"Couldn't sleep," she said listlessly by way of reply.
He nodded sagely. "Know the feeling. Do you want to talk about it?"
"Not particularly." She didn't, she really didn't. He sat down opposite and looked at her through half-lidded eyes, waiting. "It's just..." She sighed, unsure how to put it.
"Having problems with Neo?" he asked softly, understandingly. She felt her face heat up and nodded.
"I feel like he doesn't love me anymore." At the look on his face she rushed on before he could interrupt. "I know he does. I know he saved my life, but it's just - he never touches me anymore. No more than he absolutely has to. He sleeps in his own room now, we don't share anymore. And even when we're alone, he's always so distant. And I don't know..." she trailed off, fighting back tears. "I don't know what to do," she finished lamely. "We never had to talk about this stuff before. We're neither of us any good at talking, and we never needed to, it always just happened." She felt herself go red, and hunched her shoulders, wrapping her arms tightly around herself. "I can't help thinking, what if he isn't attracted to me anymore? Because of these?" and she thumped her closed fist against her leg. Beneath the layer of fabric, her leg and a good section of her lower torso were badly scarred.
Morpheus nodded quietly. "It's okay, Trinity," he said reassuringly. "He still loves you. He can't not love you."
"How would you know?" she muttered, angry at herself for divulging so much information, even to Morpheus, whom she trusted beyond anyone.
"Because he was agonising to me about it not three hours ago. It's taking every ounce of self-control he has not to drag you off to his room and ravish you."
She sat up straight and stared at him. "Then why in hell doesn't he?" she asked incredulously.
"Because he's scared," replied Morpheus simply. "You really don't realise how bad you were hurt, Trin. You should have been dead, ten times over. And nobody, not the doctors, not me, not even you, know as well as he how bad it was. He was inside you, he put you back together piece by piece and held the bits until they stayed. And now -"
"He's afraid he'll break me again," she murmured, suddenly understanding. She gave a shudder of relief. She had just been being paranoid. Of course he loved her.
"Exactly." Morpheus' reply was soft.
"But he won't," she protested.
"Doesn't stop him being scared."
She slumped again, feeling helpless.
"It's not good for either of you to be denying yourselves this way," said Morpheus calmly. "It's affecting your work. I expect the situation to be remedied, Trinity. Understand?" She looked at him. Yes, he still had his father-face on, but he was speaking with his authoritative captain-voice. She nodded.
"Yessir." A pause. "How? If he doesn't want..."
Morpheus grinned suddenly, his teeth very white in his dark face. "Oh, he wants, Trinity. Just push a little. See how fast his self-control will crumble when he wakes up with you in his bed."
For the third time in the last five minutes, Trinity blushed bright red.
"Go to bed, soldier. That's an order," said Morpheus, sounding far too satisfied with himself.
"You too, Mr Hero of the People, sir," she replied cheekily. He scowled childishly. "Go on, to bed with you. Niobe will be getting cold." If he was allowed to play father to her, she was allowed to mother him occasionally. He gave her a mocking salute and a grin before heading off in the direction of the room he shared with Niobe. Trinity shook her head before making her way in the other direction, towards Neo's cabin. No time like the present, she decided.