Hey guys! I'm baaack! It's been awhile since I've written anything, but I got this request from a guest a while ago.
Anyway, enjoy! (Rated T for some language.)
As always, I own nothing.
Cosette stumbled into a shoddy, dilapidated building. Inside, chairs and tables were overturned and broken glass lay everywhere. Nobody was inside, save one little girl. Cosette let out a slight gasp as she drunk in the sight of the girl. Her dress was torn to shreds. Her face was dirty and her hair lay tangled in a matted mess. Cuts and bruises littered her arms and legs. She wore no shoes on her feet. Still, a soft tune escaped the girl's lips as she pushed a broom twice the size of herself.
Cosette recognized the girl as her younger self. She took slow, steady steps with an outstretched head as if to help the poor girl. Suddenly, she halted. As if an invisible barrier stood before her preventing Cosette to go any further. A gravelly - yet familiar - voice screamed at the poor girl causing young Cosette to freeze.
A woman Cosette recognized as Madame Thénardier stormed into the room. She was obviously drunk, (as was her usual state.) and she held a large glass bottle in her hand. Staggering toward young Cosette, Madame started screaming.
"You little girl." She sneered. "We shoulda killed ya when we had the chance! You're good for nothing! Just like your mother was, the little WHORE!" The Madame's face grew red and angry as she staggered closer and closer to Cosette.
She threw the glass bottle straight at young Cosette who stood crying, clutching to the broom as any sort of comfort. The bottle barely missed the girl.
"Please!" She begged. "Please! I'll be good. Madame, p-please!" Madame Thénardier ignored Cosette's cries to stop. She stumbled into a table and reached over. Raising her arm to point straight at Cosette, a pistol gleamed in the light.
"You never deserved to live anyway you little bitch."
The shot fired.
"NO!" Cosette screamed, near the point of hysteria. Here hands flew to her face "No, no, no!"
Cosette gasped for air and sat straight up in bed. Blinking away tears, she reached over to where her husband lay.
"M-Marius?" She whispered, gently shaking him awake.
His eyes fluttered open to the sight of Cosette's tear-stained face. He sat upright, face full of concern, and drew Cosette into a tight hug.
"Cosette?" He asked gently. "What's wrong?" Cosette broke down in his arms. He rocked her gently back and forth, smoothing her hair and rubbing her back. He planted small kisses to head and calmed her down. Once Cosette's sobs tuned to sniffles, he tried again.
"What happened?" Cosette let it a shaking sigh and told him everything.
"When I was young, as you know, my mother left me with the Thénardiers. They treated me as if I was nothing. Practically using me as their slave." Marius nodded along, holding her gently as she told her story.
"One particular night, I was sweeping the inn, as I always did at night, and Madame Thénardier came down to yell at me. She had been drinking a lot, and well..." Cosette broke off and shook her head, unable to continue.
"And?" Marius inquired. He didn't know much about Cosette's background and early childhood, but he did know a thing or two about nightmares. And if there's anything he knew was that keeping it all locked up never worked. You had to share your secret. Whatever it was that was haunting you had to get out in the open otherwise the nightmares would never stop.
"Cosette," Marius pressed gently. "Please tell me the rest. You need to talk. Get it all out in the open. Otherwise, the nightmares will just keep coming back. Please, love, talk to me. I'm listening." The couple lay in silence as Cosette considered Marius's words. Tears slowly dripped from her eyes as she thought back to the painful memory.
"She pulled a gun on me." Cosette spoke so faintly, Marius almost didn't hear her. Cosette's lip quivered. "But she was so drunk, she missed. She passed out immediately afterwards." Marius nodded and gave Cosette a reassuring squeeze to her hand. Cosette continued. "I don't remember much of my time there. Just little pieces here and there. But that night... I don't think I'll ever forget.
"Well," Marius began slowly. "I know I can't go back in time to change what happened, but I do know that as long as I'm here, by your side, I will never, ever let anyone harm you, love. I love you so, so much." He drew Cosette into his lap and peppered her with kisses everywhere, before settling in on her lips and giving her one long kiss.
As they pulled away, Cosette smiled. Unspoken words were exchanged between them. And when Cosette rolled over to go back to bed, Marius snuggled up next to her and pulled her close before they both fell fast into a deep, dreamless sleep.
Thanks for reading! As always, please review and let me know what you think!