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Before the World Catches Up

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"Eve" Carolyn whispered softly.

She was breathless, pain burning everywhere was mixed into a cluster of sensations.

"Are you giving up" Carolyn's voice whispered again, "Do not give up".

"Eve, I need you to stay awake." A different voice seemed worried and restless as fingers kept feeling for her pulse, "Can you hear me?".

Ignoring that strange feeling of half despair and half pain that was quickly growing deep within her stomach, Eve manages to open her eyes before fainting.

 


 

 

Everything hurt, but at the same time she just felt... Numb. Everything happening around her felt unreal.

Eventually Eve managed to pry her eyes open. They hurt too, stinging with blurring tears, but the white unfamiliarity beyond the end of her nose resolved at last into a hospital room.

Hospital? What happened?

She was lying on her back, she realized, and tried to make sense of the figures standing at the end of the bed. There were three people she didn't know, one woman and two men.

Wait. That's odd.

"Hey. Welcome back", Greeted the woman with short hair and dark eyes. "You were almost dead for a long time, you scared the hell of us."

"Jess" Kenny scolded.

Eve's eyes widened, "Oh my God!"

Almost dead? Had something really bad happened? Is someone hurt?

"Eve?" Kenny looked at her closely. "Are you okay?"

Deep breaths, she told herself. She took a deep breath and pursed her lips.

"Eve", She could hear the voices screaming.

Voices that did not leave anyone's lips. She frowned, not able to distinguish between illusion and reality.

"Eve, come with me, Baby."

"Eve, come with me, baby."

The voices would not shut up. It was too much. Just – too much. She could do nothing but close her eyes and breath.

"Something is different about her", Jess complained.

Kenny gave her a worried look. "Something is wrong." His eyes did not leave Eve for a second. "Hugo call the doctor and Villanelle. Hurry up! "

"Eve, come with me, Baby."

"Eve, I call for you"

Tears began to fill her eyes and she swallowed a lump in her throat. Her eyes were still closed, and all she wanted was for the voices to shut up. She wanted to wake up, she was sure she was asleep.

She suddenly let out a sob.

"Breathe Eve, come on." The new voice was almost hypnotic. A new woman.

One of her hands founded its way to Eve's face, tenderly stroking her cheek. Her hazel eyes were locked on Eve's eyes, solemn and earnest as the woman spoke.

Eve blinked at the woman, dazed.

Her eyes were full of commotion. "It's okay", she whispered. "I'm here, Eve."

Her hazel eyes were fixed on Eve, and Eve couldn't think nor move. She stubbornly stayed quiet, looking away from the woman, and she struggled not to flinch when the woman moved to stroke her cheek again. With the first brush of her thumb against Eve's cheekbone, a shiver ran through her body. Her skin was hot against her, just a simple touch igniting something foreign, yet so familiar.

She didn't know how long the woman stayed like that, but at some point, her lips are moving again. "Eve?" the woman asked, and although it seems like it's coming from far away, it still brings her back to reality.

The woman looks worried now, but Eve didn't understand, can't process what's happening. There's suddenly just too much going on in her head at once. There's thoughts about what she was hearing, or thinks she was hearing, because it could be her imagination, or just a dream, but at the same time it didn't feel like one.

She gave the woman a questioning look. "Do I know you?"

Villanelle had pulled her hand away when Eve finished speaking, and Eve felt an emptiness run through her all body. 

The woman laughed at the odd question and kissed the top of Eve's head.

Eve couldn't subside a gasp of wonder. Her beautiful hazel eyes had Eve undeniably trapped in their magnetic hold. Eve's heart beat almost desperately, trying to understand this.

The woman was looking at Eve so lovingly when she responded, "Villanelle."

Her eyes were full to the brim with sincerity as Eve uttered four simple words, effectively shaking Villanelle's defences. "Do I know you?"

Villanelle raised her head to look at Eve with confusión.

Eve stayed silent, looking at the… Villanelle mutinously.

There was an old sneaking numbness, a feeling of loss, understanding that washes over the Villanelle. "No". She denied, taken aback by Eve's words.

Villanelle studied Eve's face, watching as she struggled with something inside but did not know how to express it. "You don't remember me." There is too much pain reflected in her hazel eyes.

"You don't know who I am?" Villanelle repeated her statement, and Eve shook her head.

The pain is quite evident in the way Villanelle's eyes did not stray from Eve when Eve said she did not remember. Eve was particularly disturbed.

Villanelle was staring at her, eyes glassy with tears. "You don't remember me."

Eve shook her head, not knowing what she was denying, but wanting Villanelle far away from her, where the woman couldn't be disgusted by Eve's display.

What she said was true, yet why did she feel like a thousand-pound weight had just settled onto her shoulders?

Villanelle pressed her lips together in understanding, nodding as she took a step back.

Eve's throat went dry all of a sudden. She could easily drown in Villanelle's eyes and she wouldn't care, but the look Villanelle gave Eve threw away any part of her heart that was left.

And then Eve just wanted cry.

 


 

 

A sort of awkwardness filled the air. Five pairs of eyes watching expectantly.

She listened to their names. Jess, Hugo Kenny. Villanelle and Konstantin.

"What hap-" She started to say, but her throat would not let her.

Her mouth tasted horrible, her body ached, and her ears were ringing. The IV made her arm feel funny, not in a good way.

"Here." Kenny offered, giving her a cup of water.

She drank cautiously, but the water was soothing. Her throat did not feel quite so sandblasted anymore.

"What happened?" The words came out slow and low.

Kenny was kind and gave her a warm smile when he asked, "Do you know where you are?"

"The hospital", She stated, "In London."

Kenny shook his head. "Can you remember anything about last night?"

She struggled. It was confusing. But Eve tried to do it. "I went to a party with some friends."

"That's good", Kenny's voice was soft and calm. Her beautiful eyes scanned her and the occupants of the room, lingering a little longer on Villanelle.

Eve couldn't keep her eyes off of the woman. There's something about Villanelle that Eve couldn't quite figure out. She approached Eve again with more concern in her eyes, and Eve knew that everything had a deeper meaning to Villanelle than to the others. However, Eve had no idea why, and Eve was not sure that she wanted to know.

She frowned as she tried to remember something more, "Niko was there."

Villanelle stopped immediately, "What do you mean?" Her posture stiffened as her eyes shifted to Eve. Villanelle was holding a breath that she did not even need, eyes widening in surprise.

"He was at Elena's party", She sucked in a deep breath before exhaling, "He wanted us to come back."

Villanelle clenched her fists as she watched.

"What did you just say?" Villanelle whispered, her mind going completely blank.

"We broke up a few days ago, but he was at Elena's party."

"Elena's party? Kenny questioned as his eyebrows become furrowed. He was sure that Elena's birthday was not until december, and the actual month was february.

Her confused eyes flicked between the occupants of the room, "Yeah, her birthday."

Kenny raised his eyebrows with an expression that said more than any words.

Eve continued her story, "Someone screamed too loud. " She said several times as her voice grew quieter and quieter. "And... Darkness."

Silence. Too much silence.

The doctor chose that moment to appear.

"What happened to me? I can't remember", She asked slowly, glancing at Villanelle again during the conversation.

"You were in a car accident, a heavy collision. You are a very lucky woman to have survived", The man, Dr. Hazel she managed to read on his scrubs, shook his head. "You lost consciousness and your heart flat lined for a bit but we managed to bring you back."

The reality came crashing down on her, except it couldn't be true. It just couldn't.

A car accident? No… That means that… Oh god! Where is Bill? Is he okay? Is he hurt?  Eve exhaled a shaky breath, clenching her trembling hands. She felt as if there was a massive hole in her heart.

"Eve-" The doctor began.

"Where is he? Is he hurt? Please tell me", Eve looked frantically at the black-haired man as he cleared his throat.

"Who, sweetheart?" Hugo's voice sounded lower.

"Bill Pargrave", She pleaded quietly.

Villanelle's face was as stoic as before, but her eyes told a completely different story.

Bill Pargrave, she was a Eve's friend. The man she had killed at the club in Berlin. About four years ago.

"Was Bill there, Eve?"

"Why are you answering my question with another question?" She asked the doctor, her voice becoming much stronger as anger laced her tone.

She felt the need to emphasise her point, "She was with me at the party"

There was a short moment of silence, but the doctor broke it before they could do so themselves.

"Don't stress about it. You will probably get the memory back in a few days, or there is a chance it will never return. This kind of minor head trauma can cause a memory hiccup. It's fairly common and not something to worry about. Pushing can actually make a memory harder to recover, so if you leave it alone, it may come back sooner."

"I don't like not remembering."

"Listen to your body. You'll need to take it easy at least a few days. We'll get you some anaesthetic."

Everything was a blur after that. It was hard to concentrate over the dull pain in her skull, but she made out words like 'concussion' before she closed her eyes.

 


 

 

Villanelle was becoming impatient, her mind a bundle of ideas as her heart felt heavy in her chest.

She breathed deeply.

Her hands moved a couple of times before her gaze fell on Melissa. Eve had awakened again, giving the doctor an opportunity to examine her thoroughly.   Now Kenny's friend was in charge of delivering the news.

"How bad is it?" The words were forced out.

"The impact caused two broken bones."

Melissa looked at Villanelle and her heart felt even heavier in the face of silence.

"What haven't you told me?" Villanelle crossed her arms in exasperation.

The nurse rubbed the back of her neck, trying to ease out a simple explanation. "With this kind of accident we always expect some consequences. They're common in these cases."

"Just tell me already", Villanelle practically shouted.

Melissa stroked Villanelle's shoulder gently, a motherly gesture of comfort.

"She can't remember; she has partial memory loss. She knows her family, and she remembers her name now along with a few other random facts about her life, but she can't remember anything else."

"Is it permanent?" Villanelle asked her quietly.

"It's most likely only short-term amnesia but there is a chance that it might extend to long term memory loss, meaning that she won't remember a major part of her life, depending on which area of the brain has been affected. We are keeping her in for a few days. In some cases, the memories simply return when least expected, but you can't force her to remember everything without risking any serious consequences."

Villanelle touched her lips and closed her eyes for a few seconds. Holy crap, what is she supposed to do? Melissa's words were hard to listen to, leaving her shaking her head and beginning to walking.

"She will never remember me" She stated, voice shaking as much as her hands.

Her own words sink in exactly seven seconds later and Villanelle hastily leaves the hospital.


 

 

 

It was the silence that welcomed her, her body moving with heaviness as she deposited her stuff on the floor. Her head was a mess, so many thoughts developing that she was sure it was going to explode any moment.

All because of one name, Eve.

The only thing clouding her mind was her.

She couldn't help but think that she didn't deserve Eve.

Still, saying that it didn't hurt would be a lie, Eve's words still stinging in her chest.

They echo in her head, her muscles tense and her jaw tightens. For several seconds, she is scared.

"Do I Know you?" Eve murmured.

Until you get too deep, you never know who really has your heart. You do not know how much your body craves a simple I love you.

Her biggest regret is that she didn't say it out loud last night, and now everything is falling apart. Like it always does in her shit life. Something inside Villanelle is fractured, broken into pieces, and the look on Konstantin's face told her that he could see that.

"You're an idiot, Villanelle!" Konstantin shouted and Villanelle could not agree more with his thoughts.

It was not a question. She didn't try to answer.

Konstantin didn't give up, "You could not ignore this."

Villanelle gave him her best evasive look. Folded her arms like a petulant child, "Of course, watch me."

Konstantin rejected her diatribe with a nod, "That doesn't sound like fun to me."

She just rolled her eyes, beginning to talk about everything for a stretched five minutes.

Konstantin let out a sound between boredom exasperation, "You could at least try and look like you're paying attention."

"But I'm not, so why bother?" she said seriously, "Lying is bad, Konstantin"

"Vila…" Konstantin began. "Eve is-"

"I know", Villanelle yelled in exasperation, "Damn it, I know"

"Then stop only thinking of you."

"God, please no. Okay?" She argued, beginning to move away from him, "Don't say anything, she doesn't remember me. She doesn't remember anyone", Villanelle whispered softly, her eyes reflecting despair. Konstantin could see a million regrets and terrible guilt etched on Villanelle' face. It made his heart ache. "She forgot about me, and damn, it hurts like hell", She felt a painful twinge in her chest and a horrible sinking feeling in the stomach. Her heart felt heavy, "I had her only to lose her again. After all this time, I've lost her, as usual. Because this is what always happens, she gets hurt and I'm about to lose my damn mind."

Konstantin was smart enough to keep quiet.

"Somebody seriously needs to nail your ass to the wall."

"Go away!" she let out when she saw the brunette approaching.

"I'm not going anywhere", Jess assured her earnestly, "And you can't force me." She added, folding her arms stubbornly.

"Well, if we're going to play this game, I was here first."

"Calm down." Konstantin suggested, gripping her arm.

"I'm trying to talk to you. I am on a mission that your friends have called intervention", Jess confessed, "Sometimes it's necessary to see a woman's point of view. Are you afraid?" She asked quietly.

"Afraid of what?"

"That you care too much to see her suffer because of you. God knows how many bad things you've been through, how many bad things we've all been through. You're afraid of hurting her somehow."

"How deep of you. Did you get it on some medical website? Psychology for beginners, maybe?" Villanelle snapped.

"I'm serious!"

"So am I!", she replied, irritation evident in her tone, "I'm just a different person when I'm with her", she finishes, ignoring her appreciative look and shrugging. That's all. She had let it out.

Jess looked at Villanelle, her facial expression softening and a slight smile appears on her lips "Do you love her?" Jess asked so quietly that it was almost a whisper.

Yes. Of course she did, and she has known it for some time, long before something happened between them. She did not respond, she merely nodded once at her.

"If you want her," The brunette began, her voice caught her attention. "Then you have to fix this."

"Don't tell me", Villanelle sneered, faking a smile and applauding sarcastically. "Do you think I don't know that?"

"You're an idiot."

Her heart rate increased, "What's that supposed to mean?"

Konstantin could see where Villanelle's mind was drifting and placed a hand on her shoulder.

"Eve loves you Villanelle, even if she can't remember you. Dammit!", Jess was angry. "She was always be there for you. Eve never allowed any of us to give up on you. She believed in you."

Every nerve in her body felt like it would explode with that statement.

"And now she needs us. She needs you. She's a frightened woman."

She clenched her jaw, able to feel the rapid beating of her own heart.

Jess continued, "We will not leave her alone. I don't care if you're scared or you feel sad, because dammit, she needs you. And I'll kick your ass if you don't help her."

"Jess" Konstantin scolded her.

Tears run down Villanelle' face, "She's right"

"You just need a plan to make Eve remember you and fall in love with you again".

"You will not give up Astankova", Jess paused licking her lips, "We will not leave you. Got it?"

"Uh huh" Villanelle answered.

"Good. The plan on how to make Eve fall in love with you, starts over. "


 

Her steps were slow and cautious, but she was true to what she believed in, and Villanelle believed in her. Eve would come back to her. Villanelle would sure about that. She couldn't stop herself, she looked at Eve lovingly. Her untidy curls were in her face, but Villanelle didn't move them away. Everything about her was intoxicating.

Villanelle took Eve's face in her hands gently. "Since I met you, I stopped believing in coincidences. I knew because I had to, had to find someone to change my life, my way of thinking. You've taught me so much and there is so much to learn." She said aloud, but only silence hears her confession, "I don't know what, or who, I have to thank that you have crossed my path, but you're the best I could have found. I've looked at you in millions of ways and I've loved every single one."

"I wish I was brave enough to say this while you're awake", Villanelle whispered in Eve's hair, "I'm in love with you Eve Polastri."