edge of the knife

Fandom: Revolution
Genre: General, Drama
Rating: K+
Word Count: 433

Summary: Nate has been preparing for this for a long time. Inside the mind of one of Monroe's men during 1x1. Ficlet.

Author's Note: Trying to get inside that pretty boy head of Nate's during the first episode. This will probably be horrifically AU and/or OOC once the second episode comes out. Yes. I am quite the rabid fan-ficcer.

Disclaimer: I am not in any way affiliated with Revolution, NBC, J.J. Abrams, Jon Favreau, Eric Kripke, or anyone else involved with the show. No profit is made from this story.

He knew what desperation was. It was gray city walls, ivy clawing at the cracks. It was water dripping from a grimy roof gutter in a back alley. It was stalking rats in the darkness like an animal, tearing them open with fingers and teeth while blood gushed onto his hands. It was smoke and rising water and burning sun and hiding in the shadows.

So when Monroe found him, it was salvation. A clean bed, two meals a day, suitable clothing. And most of all, something to believe in. Realizing that smoke and rising water and burning sun and hiding were not all there was to reality. Or rather, that reality could be changed. And Monroe would make it change, if only they believed in him. Nate would give him all, because he believed in that vision, too.

So Nate trained and grew, learned to fight and hunt, lie and lead. He became strong, skilled, ready for the mission that would help to change the world.

When they sent him, it had been a little strange at first. He hadn't been outside the compound on his own since he was ten years old. He hadn't known a moment without his comrades since he set foot inside its walls. But Nate was a soldier, born for this moment, and it wouldn't faze him.

And then he saw her, and maybe he was fazed after all. Because she was naïve and sweet and beautiful, and nothing was like what his debriefing had prepared him for. It was too easy to lie to her. It was too easy to gain her trust. And she needed someone, like he had needed someone, only he knew somehow that what Monroe had to offer could not satisfy her. She saw a world beyond the walls and ideals of the compound. She loved something called freedom, while he had grown comfortable with discipline and rigidity.

He was stuck really, two sides warring in his head. On the one side was everything he'd ever believed in, familiarity and commitment. On the other was something too new even to comprehend, but it was something tantalizingly lovely and wild. And risky. Too risky.

Nate chose familiarity. But then he saved her life, and when she looked at him, she made him feel like he was missing out on something he was meant to be doing, losing his shot at the person he was supposed to be.

He left her. He headed back to the life he had chosen.

But deep down, he knew this was a war that had only just begun.