Jacqui (wily_one24) wrote,

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Fic: Elle Table, prompts #001, #002

Title: Sweet Like Chocolate.
Author: Jacqui, wily_one24.
Prompt: #001: Lies.
Word Count: 265.
Table: Here.
Rating: PG13.
Spoilers: Let’s say… everything they’ve shown for Elle.


When Elle was very young, she liked the Haitian.

He was warm and smiled and nodded to her in the hallways. He smelled of spices and his eyes were friendly in ways that others’ weren’t. Sometimes when he would visit her in her room, he would bring her candy, sweet chocolate that would melt on her tongue as he brought his finger to his lips and warned her to keep it quiet.

On her ninth birthday, she had collapsed on the floor with large, hacking breaths gasping through her mouth and struggling all the way to her lungs, the air burning and bursting in her throat. Her fingers grasped at the floor, fingernails catching on the cement.

Her body was wracked with aftershocks, white hot bursts of pain that shot through her like glass and fused her teeth together and her eyes shut, nothing but whimpers coming out as she hitched, jerked, the smell of burning flesh in her nostrils.

The Haitian came in and knelt down next to her, laid his flat brown hand on her back; she felt it like a starfish, five points of comfort that sang. He shook his head and murmured warm honey notes under his breath, his wide white eyes filling with anger aimed at someone not her.

He sat her up, placed his hands on either side of her head and murmured the only words she remembered hearing from him, I’m sorry.

Her eyes opened and she smiled as he slipped another bar of chocolate into her clammy hands.

When she was very young, Elle liked the Haitian.


Title: Unmasked.
Author: Jacqui, wily_one24.
Prompt: #002: Truth.
Word Count: 464
Table: Here.
Rating: PG13.
Spoilers: Let’s say… everything they’ve shown for Elle.


Elle was not stupid.

She was observant and analytical and shrewd in ways few people cared to notice. She watched the people around her, she devoured media as sources of information about people and life in general; she deduced habits and patterns and roles. She knew her life was not normal, had known it for a long time.

She was long past accepting things at face value.

For example, she knew that her daddy loved her. He didn’t always show it, would brush off any attempt she gave to wheedle it out of him, but she knew because when she was a good girl and did everything he said, he would smile at her and his eyes would be proud and she wouldn’t think at all about the action that had brought that expression to his face.

But she also knew that his version of good was not the mainstream version of good, and that sometimes his good hurt other people and his good caused secret arguments behind closed doors that she wasn’t supposed to overhear or understand or know about.

Her father’s good often sent the Haitian to see her and she knew what that meant, had known it for a long time, but she played along, because sometimes her father’s smile was worth it. She knew what that smile meant, even if he never said the words.

She knew what the look behind the Haitian’s eyes was. It was pity.

Pity, that made him gentler with her, that let him share the occasional word with her when she knew others believed he hadn’t spoken in years. She kept that secret, because if her daddy had taught her anything, it was that secrets were valuable, more valuable than money.

Secrets were power, people protected them with their lives and the lives of their loved ones, people could withstand surprising amounts of pain and forceful coercion to keep a secret. The potency of a secret was directly proportional to the knowledge of its keeper of how and when to use it.

Elle knew keeping the Haitian’s secret gave her power; it gave her the ability to ask him to keep hers.

The next time he came to her and she was sucking air through clamped teeth, her hair plastered to her scalp, crackling shocks sparking like tics through her muscles, Elle looked him in the eye and asked him not to take it away from her.

He nodded sadly, as if he had expected no less, had been waiting for this moment, and asked her if she was sure.

She nodded and he gave her a smile that was sadder than his nod and left.

For the first time in sixteen years, Elle remembered her father’s face as he gave the orders and watched.

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