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[personal profile] angel_gidget
Title: Bound in Walls
Fandom: TID
Rating: PG
Word Count: 346
Disclaimer: Not mine.
Summary: Done for tumblr prompt. Quick exploration of old plot bunny--AU. Mortmain captured Tessa and bound her to him in a marriage ritual years ago. Jem is his prisoner, and grows closer to his captor's wife every day.

In some ways, the walls that trap him are thin. So terribly, terribly thin.

Jem can hear them if he put puts his ear to the door. He hears Mortmain’s voice, subtle and oh-so reasonable until suddenly it is not, and he hears the growl, “Change!”  followed by the sound of a slap and something tumbling and breaking.

He hears the feminine gasp of pain, followed by a silence.

She won’t cry. He knows it. She won’t Change until he’s given her at least half an hour more of hell, and she won’t cry until her thrice-damned husband is out of sight.

When she unlocks the door to Jem’s cell of a room an hour later, he can see the angry red shadow of a hand splayed over her cheek.

He takes the food she brings in silence. And moves to the furthest corner of the room away from her, gesturing towards the bookshelf.

Jem had wondered at the soft decor of the place when he’d first been imprisoned. But he now realizes that this was her room. That Mortmain, for want of a true cell, took her library from her, one of her few pleasures.

Mrs. Mortmain… No, that’s not right. She’s not his wife. Not really… Tessa slowly steps over to the shelf, and pulls out an old tome from it, clutching it with the sort of desperation reserved for dearest friends.

She seems oblivious to the tears that escape from wide gray eyes, and Jem feels his own breath catch.

He feels to compulsion to move, yet forces his legs to freeze and his arms to remain at his side.

“Thank you,” she whispers. Soft voice, harsh accent. Completely beautiful.
As she slips out and locks the door behind her, Jem exhales, and stretches out his hand to observe it.

It trembles, no, shakes.

Perhaps he can blame it on the fever dreams that are minutes away, the lack of yin fen in his blood—but for the first time, Jem does not simply dream of escape.

He dreams of murdering his captor too.


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August 2015

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