Miz (mizubyte) wrote in gen_ficathon,
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X-Men Movieverse: "Limbo" - for monkianen

Title:   Limbo
Recipient:  Monkianen
Author:  b_dsaint 
Fandom:  X-Men Movieverse
Character(s):  Wolverine
Prompt: What if Wolverine hadn't lost his memories in the first place? How his life would have been?
Rating:  PG
Word Count:  1028
Author's Notes:  Thank you to solarcat  and babykid528 for putting up with me.  Saints, the both of you.  Hopefully this is in line with what the prompter wanted. Time line wise this takes place after X-Men 1, but before X-Men 2.  References Origins but is definitely an Alternate Universe.
Summary:   The adamantium bullet killed Logan briefly, but didn't affect his memory.  An AU look at the path Logan's life might have taken if he remembered everything Stryker had done.


Eight.  Ten.  Eight.  Ten.

He's never been a student of literature; he's spent too much time fighting and running to spend time in a library and read the classics.  But even he's aware of Dante's Inferno, the nine circles of hell.  He knows the different levels, a different punishment for every sin; the circles of mud, of fire, of ice, of blood.  He knows the deepest, darkest levels are reserved for traitors and betrayers.

He knows even Dante didn't envision this kind of hell.

It takes him eight steps to pace from the back wall to the front. Exactly ten steps from the left wall to the right. Eight steps from front to back. Ten steps from right to left.  Every corner perfectly square; exactly 90 degrees.  No joining cracks, no imperfections in the cool metal.  Even the bars are perfectly spaced, disappearing seamlessly into the floor and ceiling.  Nothing but smooth, perfect, endless metal.

Eight. Ten. Eight. Ten.

The bars are exactly an inch in diameter, separated by a gap of three inches; evenly spaced all around the cell.  He eyes the bars considering, contemplating, before throwing himself bodily at them. Sizzle. Slash. Growl. He falls back with a whimper. No change since the last time he tried.  Nothing can break through electrically charged adamantium, but that doesn't stop him from trying.

Eight. Ten. Eight. Ten.

He's lost count of how long he's been here, trapped within one hundred-sixty square feet. There are no shadows, no light to help gauge the passing of time. He has no guard rotation to learn, no feeding schedule to pace.  He tries to count seconds, keep track of minutes and hours, but even his claws fail to make a mark in the smooth metal of the floor, and he can only keep track in his head for so long. He knows it's been longer than a month since he woke up in this place, has a sinking feeling that it's been more than a year, and no way of knowing for certain.

Eight. Ten. Eight. Ten.

Within the timeless void he's spent in this place, he's seen exactly three people.

The first came not long after he originally woke up.  He recognized the man from before, from when he was still proud to be a soldier and the team still helped people.  It was a military commander, Major Jacobs or Johnson or Jenson, who'd always kept his distance; had always been awash with the stench of fear when around the team.  Now the commander had been cocky and dismissive, full of bravado, staring at the animal locked safely away in a cage. Jacobs (Jenson?) coldly informed him that he's guilty of the murder of one Lt. Colonel William Stryker.  When he'd snorted and asked when his trial was, Jenson (Johnson?) had smirked. Trials are only for people who exist, he'd been told. And you don't.

The second came later, maybe days, probably weeks.  It was a doctor, hesitant and nervous, who'd appeared and done a scan of his vitals. He'd let the man complete his scans because the doctor had the stomach turning smell of fear, and despite whatever the military said, he'd never actually wanted to hurt anyone unless they hurt him first. Later, when the scans were complete and they, whoever they were, realized his body was in the exact prime shape that it'd always been since he'd turned 30 and stopped aging, and what little food he'd been getting abruptly stopped appearing, he'd regretted not attacking the doctor.

The third and final soul he's seen since he got himself caught in this hell came by recently.  A senator who'd looked the part and sounded the part, but hadn't quite smell the part.  He'd smelt more of scales and death than of offices and politics. The senator had paced and gestured importantly outside the bars, talked about grand goals and helping his people, about making a difference and the creation of a new age.   He'd listened with half an ear, laying on his back in the middle of the adamantium floor, and methodically sheathed and unsheathed his claws.  He'd timed it to the senator's heartbeat. The senator,who wasn't really, had finally talked himself out, stared at him for a moment while smelling of disappointment and resignation, and left without a backward glance.

Eight. Ten. Eight. Ten.

There's nothing to this cell: a floor, a ceiling and four walls of bars. The cell sits inside another cell, two feet of empty space between the bars and the solid walls that block out all natural light and sound. There's a door in one of the walls; solid and invisible from this side, but he knows its there because that's where his visitors, what few there been, came from.

Inside the bars there's just him. No facilities, no bunk; just him and the clothes he wears. And his memories.

He remembers a smooth Cajun voice full of concern and sympathy. Endless questions of who, what, when, where and how can I help?  He remembers humid New Orleans evenings, late nights spent eating gumbo and hacking into government computer systems.  Of making plans and tracing clues.  Trading shots when lead after lead came up empty.  He remembers leaving in the shadowy half-light of sunrise, running and not looking back.

Because clearer than the sharp smell of tobacco and spice is the fresh scent of jasmine and Canadian mountains.  He remembers heavy dark hair and warm brown eyes; an easy smile and a soft touch.  He can recall the sting of betrayal being overwhelmed by the weight of all-consuming love, and the crashing emptiness of sudden loss.  The burning need for revenge and retribution.

Eight.  Ten.  Eight.  Ten.

A self-satisfied smile touches his mouth, a purr escaping between parted lips.  The clearest memory of all is the smell of fear as he had finally caught up with his prey, the feel of claws sinking into soft flesh, the sound of a last dying breath and the blankness that had stolen over Stryker's eyes forever.

Dante never envisioned this kind of hell-- or heaven.  Maybe this is neither.  Or both.

Eight.  Ten.  Eight.  Ten.
Tags: author: b_dsaint, character: wolverine, fandom: x-men movieverse, recipient: monkianen
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