she saw you as soft, a weak human who needed guidance and protection. and it wasn’t like she wanted to love you. no, love was an emotion too stubborn to be kindled into a thing like herself. she was stone, both inside and out, long since fractured by the touches of men and women.
at first, north tried to form a connection with markus, who she saw as the only person in the world who might understand her. yet still, markus’s mind was plagued by the revolution, and he had no personal interests in pursuing a romantic relationship.
still, in a twist of cruel fate, she met you. a human who was close to that deviant hunter turned deviant. you described yourself as connor’s friend, a fellow investigator who became another player in the civil war. instead, you transformed into the centerpiece of her story. unwanted. unrelenting.
she didn’t need a human in her life. and yet…
“we can’t die…” your voice was so small and delicate in its tone as you looked up at her. “you can’t die, i–” you stopped, wincing from the pain in your left arm.
there was a short pause, in which the only noise was of the distant bullets and the screams of her people. north closed her eyes, pretending that there was nothing here but you. she was injured, with bullet holes lodged in her chest, lower stomach, cheek, and hip. but she didn’t feel pain, only defeat, and imminent failure. you were different, however, and at that moment, all of her thoughts were about you.
the last time she saw markus, he said he was going underneath to detonate the bombs. simon and josh were still trying to escape and connor was with them. still, it had been too long for no news to come to her and markus would have sent a message to all androids if he came across trouble he couldn’t fix. slowly, north was losing hope of ever seeing them again.
they are dead…or they left us.
it wasn’t like north to be pessimistic, but how long has it been since you and her were stranded here? just the thought of dying a slow and torturous death sends an ugly shiver down north’s back. her hair was sticky with blue blood from those of her brethren; the lower half of her clothing was stained dark: your blood.
if she was of a clearer mind, she could try self-repairing. but, she realized that even if it was successful, she couldn’t escape jericho with you. there were far too many human soldiers in the freighter and with each passing second there will be more. soon, they will have you two surrounded.
“north,” your voice was stronger now, as one hand clasped onto her shoulder. you, the weak-willed and meek little human, wore something she never saw once on your blood-streaked face. for a second, she saw the fire she longed to see on you, even if it was small and hesitant.
“they will come for us, (name), they will come and we will leave,” was her response, pausing shortly as she processed the information. “-together.” how strange, your own determination has sown seeds of forced optimism into her.
still, her old self spoke in the back of her mind, its voice cold and cruel. nobody will come, this was what the humans wanted. extermination. extinction. and, perhaps, (name) will die too.
“i love you, north.”
your voice cut through her dark thoughts with such tenderness. once she would scoff, having heard it said many times from humans in their throes of intense passion. yours was different; it was the truth, said with so much affection, and filled with so much honesty.
i am always honest with my feelings. you once told her, smiling in a way that kept her eyes to your face, a spider enchanted by the fly.
and in that moment, north felt the gentle tidings of love for you. it was different from her feeling for markus. when one was an intense need and hunger for passion, this one with you was a gentle embrace, warm and comforting. a willingness to cherish and protect and -
north slowly pulled you into an embrace. it wasn’t exactly how she planned, with you awkwardly half touching her with your good arm as the injured one hanging limply to the side. both of you weren’t sure if that one can make it. at the very least, a tourniquet was wrapped around it, stopping the blood flow from now. still, it was a painful reminder of what was happening.
the voice inside her remained stubborn, however.
no, you will shut down and (name) will die. wouldn’t that be good, too? you two will live together, in death.
“i don’t want you to die (name),” north said, quietly. she buried her face into the crook of your neck, smelling the hint of perfume and your own natural fragrance intermingled into one scent. everything about you was slow and gentle. unlike her, and unlike the humans she entertained.
yet, fate was cruel and punished her in the most unkind of ways.
/error: serious malfunction detected
north opened her eyes, raising her head up to look past your shoulder. her world was inky splotches, slowly growing in numbers and expanding with each blink of her eyes. the damages were done, she knew it, but you didn’t.
for your experience dealing with androids, you were still naive to their bodies and functions (i am new…a rookie, you had told her). so you looked at her, calling her name, reaching up with one arm to caress her cheek.
how weak, how pathetic…!
even with you by her side, she still couldn’t protect you. she inwardly laughed, bitterly. the future she wanted was no longer achievable. why was she hated by everything? why can’t she have something good, and keep it forever?
with the force of hatred towards herself, and to the humans that caused this chaos, she pushed you off. there was shock on your pale face, nevertheless, you returned to her with trembling arm holding onto her. perhaps, you realized something wrong at that moment, and once again you looked soft.
“n-north, please, tell me you’re okay!” your cries and screams were a distant thunder, somehow still comforting and warm to her. north smiled, weakly, and took a hold of your hand. even with the pain, you chose to come to her. the red was still bleeding from your wound, and she hated it.
“go…you are human, you need to live,” came her distorted voice, as you watched and begged and screamed.
humans are a menace; they will kill her for siding with your kind.
north closed her eyes and willed the thoughts away. she even tried to drown your voice, however far away it was now. soon, she realized that she had no more energy to even move, or open her eyes fully.
of course, you remained by her side, even as the ship started shaking uncontrollably. even as a dark figure rushed by and took a hold of your arm. north watched as you tried to shake yourself from his grip, screaming for her.
no connor please, take north too.
the sky was falling, like black raindrops on stone.