Characters: Niki and Jessica
Spoilers: For the Season One Finale
Word Count: 1,264
Written For: havocthecat
Prompt: I'd like to see Niki and Jessica come to some kind of an accommodation with each other. Can be set whenever in the chronology you want. Can include any other characters you feel necessary to the story.
Author's Notes/Summary: Niki is just full of surprises
She wasn't losing her mind.
She knew this for sure now, and besides, losing her mind would be a damn sight easier to deal with.
"What makes you think it would be easier? Look what happened last time when you thought you were crazy and we were locked up. I wouldn't think that you would call that easy."
"That's not exactly what I meant. I just meant that this made for an unusual situation with no easy way to decide things. When I thought I was losing my mind and that I was crazy or that you were a figment of my imagination, some decisions were much simpler to make."
"You make everything always sound so complicated, Niki."
"In this case it really seems to be."
"How do you figure? You proved you were the stronger one. You saved our son."
"You spared DL's life. You wouldn't kill him even when Linderman offered you everything to do so. You refused to kill him and you let me come back."
"He still got shot."
"But not because of you. He got shot because he got between us and a bullet. That was nothing caused by you." Niki looked at the image of the woman sitting across from her. "Jessica, you helped me save our son. Without you, she would have killed me... allowed me to believe that in a blackout I had hurt Micah."
"There is no way that you would ever do anything to hurt Micah, Niki. Even when you saw the illusions, deep down you knew that it wasn't real -- that it couldn't be real. All I did was remind you of that truth."
Niki let out a soft sigh and Jessica tilted her head. "Okay, first, we need to set up some ground rules."
"So we can find a way to co-exist with each other."
"Co-exist? I thought I was the evil bitch in your mind that you wanted gone."
"I thought so, too," she said quietly. "But things change. Thoughts change."
"Why the turnaround, Niki?"
"Because you were right. You have always been the one that has taken care of me... and of Micah. You did things that I never could have done to keep us alive and whole."
"You are stronger than you have ever been able to give yourself credit for, Niki. You did what you could to make a life for Micah when... when things went so wrong."
"I should have helped you more when Dad..."
"You stop right there, Niki. No beating yourself up about that. You were just a kid. We both were. We had no way to defend ourselves against him."
Niki drew her knees up to rest her chin on them. "You've been here ever since," she said tapping her head. "I never knew, but you were always here."
Jessica nodded. "I had to make sure I was. You needed me to protect you from Dad. I didn't want the same thing to happen to you that had happened to me. One of us had to stay alive."
"Is that why I don't remember a lot of it?"
"What was the point in letting you remember everything he did to you, Niki? I knew and as far as I was concerned, that was enough. Then you grew up and got away, and I wasn't needed as much any more. You started living a better life and you found DL... had Micah." Jessica looked at her. "Things were starting to go so well and I was able to relax for you."
"And then Dad showed up."
"Yeah, then that bastard showed up with money to pay you off and fix your problems. But he screwed up and upset you by yelling at Micah and scaring you both. I couldn't have that happen." Jessica's glare was fierce. "I wasn't going to let him put that look back in your eyes again."
"So you took care of it."
"I took care of it. I wasn't about to let him tear your life apart. Not when you building a new life for yourself with your husband."
"Were you trapped with me all of that time?"
Jessica let out a sigh of her own. "Still thinking with the negative, sis," she said. However, there was affection in her tone. "I never thought of it as being trapped... well not until you decided to get yourself arrested and have us both locked up in a cage."
Niki looked away for a long moment before meeting her eyes. "You were trying to kill DL at the time...."
"He tried to kill you."
"You attacked him and betrayed him."
"He took our son away from us and was going to keep him away from us."
"He thought he was protecting Micah from me..." Niki said quietly. "He didn't know about you until Micah told him... although how he knew...."
"Micah is a very perceptive little kid." Jessica smirked slightly. "He realized I was a part of you before you did."
Niki rubbed her forehead. "Okay, first, no sleeping with my husband while pretending to be me."
Jessica blinked. "What?"
"Exactly what I said. You will not try to seduce DL while pretending to be me. That's not fair to him... and it's not fair to me."
Jessica seemed to be caught off guard as Niki kept talking.
"Second, you will not try lying to Micah about which one of us you are. He knows me and he knows you and he will not be fooled again, so don't even try."
"Niki, what the hell are you doing?"
"Third, you will not get involved in every battle I get into. You have to let me stand on my own two feet sometimes, Jessica. Let me find my strength and fight my own battles. I'm not a little girl any longer."
"I am not just going to stand by and let you get killed, Niki!"
"I understand that and I would never expect you to," Niki said gently. "But Jessica, sis, I'm not fragile and not always in need of protection. There are times you are going to have to hold back and let me fight for myself. If it looks like I'm in trouble and in over my head, find, step in, but give me a chance to take care of it myself before you do."
"I can try. I've always looked after you and protected you... but I can try to let you fight your own battles. I won't be perfect, but I'll try."
"As long as you promise to try. That's all I ask."
"You want to tell me what's going on here?"
"Compromise and accommodations, Jessica. Compromise and accommodations. Rather than banish you somewhere and your spirit ends up God knows where, we figure out some sort of compromise for you to exist here."
"You're not serious?"
"I am very, very serious."
"Why would you be willing to do this?"
"Because... you're my sister," Niki said quietly. "You had your own life taken away from you by someone who should have protected us, and you spent the last several years trying to protect me."