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No Ordinary Love

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Eve stood at her kitchen sink gripping the counter top around it so hard her knuckled turned white. What was she trying to hold onto? Not her marriage. That had slipped from her grasp in the deluge of what happened at that bohemian shabby chic apartment. A confrontation so explosive it managed to turn her world upside down in the 4 months that had followed and yet in direct contrast her relationship with Niko or what was left of it by that point had simply ended with a whimper. Was it her career she was gripping? The serial killers, the psychopaths, the murderers, the most treacherous criminals she was charged with tracking every day when there was only one who consumed her every waking and breathing thought. The one she hadn’t laid since that fateful night. The one she imagined lying in a gutter somewhere bleeding out or dying from some kind of horrific infection because of what she’d done. Or being severely compromised by the injury during a confrontation with a member of the twelve and having the light extinguished from those incredible cat like hazel eyes of hers. Eyes she wished she was looking into earlier that day when a very clear message had been delivered to tell her she’d been digging too deep into the activities of a murderous paedophile MI6 were tracking. It had happened so quickly. Thick black gloved hands around her throat squeezing the life out of her. And even as her world started to go black all she could see was Villanelle.

Her house was surrounded by agents tasked with protecting her. If she was being watched moving to a safe house at that point would have been futile. She told herself she was tough and brave. That as she slipped further into the depravity of the psychopathic playground she’d honestly been thriving on playing in dances with danger such as surprise attacks had to be occupational hazards. But the truth was she was scared. Scared and alone.

Villanelle stood on the exterior of Eve’s house watching her carefully through the window, her delicate features twisted in worry she might have kicked herself for displaying if she wasn’t so transfixed by and concerned for the beautiful disaster in front of her. She had never known the object of her obsession to look so defeated.

Carolyn Martens finished touching base with the agents and turned to watch the young assassin with interest. She had been more than a little shocked when Villanelle had made contact to tell her she was infiltrating a paedophilia and sex trafficking ring on a freelance assignment to take out the king pins and had found a photo of Eve with a hole in the middle of her forehead. As it would turn out, they’d all been tracking the same suspects. She’d told Carolyn to close ranks around Eve immediately and she’d be on the first plane to London. If the attack on Eve earlier that day was anything to go by, the warning was very much warranted. Perhaps she’d been a little hasty in actively keeping them separate from each other. She was beginning to think it was like trying to separate the sea from the sand.

“Tea?” Carolyn said as she approached Villanelle with a hot Thermos mug and Villanelle eyed the mug longingly and then Carolyn gratefully. “Thank you Carolyn that would be lovely” She took the mug of perfect not too hot tea and sipped it blissfully as Carolyn regarded her in bemusement. For a trained killer her manners were impeccable.

“Mmmmm this is good. I think that nobody makes tea like the English. Especially home made!” Villanelle mused and Carolyn nodded “I would say I’m biased but I have to agree! How’s Eve doing?”

“Fairly shitty. She’s in shock, and a hideous cardigan!” Villanelle replied honestly. Carolyn bit back a chuckle. “And her attacker?” she questioned further.

Villanelle shrugged “He was just a minion. But I cut off each of his fingers one by one before I killed him. And then I made him eat the fingers from one hand but I kept the ones from his left hand to show Eve he won’t be trying to strangle her ever again! They’re in a container in my bag!”

“Quite the lengthy kill given your track record Villanelle. Venting some frustration were we?” Carolyn probed her and Villanelle’s eyes turned cold and possessive “I don’t like that someone else was putting their hands on Eve’s throat!”

Carolyn watched in astonishment as the ice in Villainelle’s eyes thawed as quickly as it appeared and her face took on a look of genuine anguish. “I don’t like that he hurt her. Like this!”

Even Carolyn’s expression softened. “Yes I can see that!” She took a deep breath and ventured further. “The way you two communicate is most unconventional, you kill her friend, she destroys your apartment and stabs you, she spends months pining for any sign of life from you, you torture, dismember and murder someone who attacks her and save her bloody body parts. Have you ever thought of perhaps just sending her flowers?”

Villanelle scrunched her nose up “You know what? I have but it’s so hard to know the quality you’re getting when buying flowers online from an international location! Some of them look so nice in the pictures but then you get them and they’re really ugly!” she remarked distastefully and Carolyn wondered if there was a question on earth the younger women didn’t have an answer for. The frustrating thing was, despite her attempts to take very few things seriously, there was significant merit in what she said.

“And I just knew Konstantin snitched on what happened in Paris! That mouthy little old garden gnome!” Villanelle added sulkily.

This time Carolyn did chuckle out loud. “It’s been a long day. Why don’t you come over for some more tea tomorrow and we can discuss the finer details of more permanent employment with MI6 if you’re interested of course. Believe me, I’m aware the dangers of trying to cage a wild bird especially one as deadly as you. But you’d be an invaluable asset and I believe we could arrange tasks where you could fly freely as you needed to.” She looked at Villanelle knowingly and Villanelle regarded her carefully.

“I suppose am getting bored with freelance.” Villanelle pouted and Carolyn gave her a guarded smile

‘Excellent! Tomorrow then.”

As she was walking away Villanelle called after her ‘Carolyn can we have cake too?” Carolyn turned back to see the cheeky hopeful grin on her face and marvelled at the contradiction of the assassin with an almost child- like innocence about her. It was very disarming and rather endearing. She could almost see why Eve had fallen so deep into her web. She was beginning to see the two women were just as entangled in one another.

“I think that can be arranged!”

Villanelle smiled brightly “I would like that very much thank you. Goodnight Carolyn.”

One of the agents approached Villainelle to speak to her but she simply put her hand in his face and said “You are annoying, go away!”

“So you’ve been pining for me Eve Polastri” Villanelle whispered into the dark with a little sigh of relief.
*********************************************
Villanelle continued to watch Eve through the kitchen window. “How long can you stand there for Eve?” she wondered as she checked her watch and realised it must have been close to forty minutes by now. But she knew the answer to that. Once upon a time she too had been new to the dangers of their world. And though when physically attacked for the first time she’d pretended to be fine and focused only on vengeance it had mainly been to get Konstantin off her back because the truth was she’d been shaken to her core. Not that she’d ever be able to admit that aloud to anyone. Or could she?

She couldn’t get the look of terror she had seen on Eve’s face out of her mind. She’d landed at Heathrow and headed straight to MI6. It was enroute she’d seen Eve heading to work and the protective agents following her from a distance, likely so she was unaware of the situation until she reached Carolyn and a plan could be made. But her unparalleled instincts told her something wasn’t right. They had been so far away from Eve. She was so far ahead of the agents and they weren’t following her nearly closely enough. She placed an immediate distress SOS to MI6 and then suddenly she was out of the cab and running. Running as fast as her legs could carry her. Running down an alley and around the corner of the MI6 building straight into the masked assailant strangling the life out of Eve. She’d stuck her knife right through his back and he had screamed in shock and pain and let go of Eve and she’d managed to lunge for one of Eve’s arms and pull Eve into her own where she fell like a limp rag doll losing consciousness.

“Eve!” she’d screamed shaking her to check she was still breathing and when she saw that she was she had practically thrown her at Carolyn and Kenny who had arrived at the scene. “Help her!” she’d yelled as she chased after the unknown assailant making his escape. But her face. She’d gotten a look at the terror on Eve’s beautiful, vulnerable face. And it had brought her far more undone than she liked. Carolyn had told her that Eve didn’t seem to have any memory of her presence at the scene but that didn’t matter. There would be time for revelations later. So she was here to make sure the useless agents were doing their job.

Villanelle regretfully finished the last drop of tea and placed it on the ground at her feet, noting it was the first shred of sustenance she’d had since landing early that morning. She was vaguely aware of the agents organising a dinner run and made a mental note to play nice long enough to get a burger. It was then that she registered one of them saying something about checking if Eve would like something.
“No that is very bad!” Villanelle said aloud to herself trying to place which agent had spoken. Approaching someone in shock like Eve was without them expecting it could be very harmful.She whipped around to see an agent almost at Eve’s back door.

“Shit!” she cried out as she took off after him and crash tackled him, both of them rolling into the side of the house with a thud.
Eve must have heard the crash because she screamed and Villanelle punched the agent in the leg. “Now look what you’ve done. Moron!” She took the keys to Eve’s house out of her pocket and opened the back door as quickly as she could.

Eve turned from her position facing the window and gripped the sides of the kitchen counter once more. Her eyes darting frantically around the room.

“Who are you? Who is out there?” She cried out and was stunned as a lithe figure dressed all in black with a black baseball cap and pretty cheeks flushed pink from the cold evening stepped into her kitchen.

“It’s okay Eve. It’s just me” Villanelle said softly as she took off her cap and smoothed the flyaway hairs back into her ponytail.
Eve stared at her in disbelief “But...but I stabbed you!”

Villanelle gave her one of her theatrical mock serious looks “I know! You’re so annoying and you were such an arsehole that day. We can talk about that later!”

“You’re here to kill me aren’t you? You’re working with that man from before. They’re trying to kill me” Eve began to gasp as she became more and more upset and Villanelle shook her head.

“No Eve I’m not here to kill you, I’m here to keep you safe”

“No you’re not! Help! Someone help me!” Eve cried and Villanelle sighed in frustration.

“EVE!” she yelled over the top of her wailing and went to where she stood, grabbing her under the arms and shaking her only for Eve to cry harder.

“EVE STOP IT!” Villanelle yelled much louder the second time. She lifted Eve up onto the counter and slammed her onto it then still holding under her arms, moved her face so close to Eve’s that Eve fell silent finally.

“You are hysterical Eve. It’s okay. I get it. The first time I got attacked on the job I was very upset!”

Eve looked at the beautiful young woman who let her guard down so rarely in wonder. It was so hard to imagine her being emotionally affected by violence. She watched in amazement as Villanelle threaded her fingers through both of her hands and leant in, pressing her forehead against her own.

“Just breathe with me Eve!”

Villanelle wanted to kiss her so badly but she forced herself to remain very still as she felt Eve’s breathing begin to return to normal and her pulse slow. She closed her eyes and continued breathing with Eve. Until she felt a shaky hand on the side of her face and saw Eve staring back at her with so much raw emotion and regret in her eyes she honestly didn’t know what to do.

“I’m so sorry I hurt you! I think about it all the time!”

Villanelle felt the beginnings of tears in her own eyes. She was unsure of what she should say but still she grasped Eve’s wrist and leant into her touch.“It was a little bit sexy.” She said cheekily then added “And a lot annoying” She rolled her eyes and Eve shook her head, unable to supress a small smile.“And painful. In different ways. Which was new. For me” She said so softly as she avoided Eve’s eyes that Eve almost didn’t hear her. But she did. And somehow she knew Villanelle wasn’t just talking about the wound.

“Oksana…” Eve said breathily. “Sweetheart…” She gently brushed the wispy tendrils of blonde hair back from Villanelle’s beautiful face.
Villanelle was surprised at how little it bothered her when Eve called her by her name but nothing quite prepared her for the term of endearment. Or the way it seemed to make her heart sing. She shook it off and put some distance between the two of them.
Eve understood. She’d seen the look of rapture and raw honesty flash across Villanelles face before she’d supressed it. But it had been there. It seemed there were two frightened women standing in her kitchen.

“I’m sorry you could have died today. In that awful cardigan. It would have been very sad. The dying part. Especially in that horrid monstrosity” Villanelle eyed the garment in distaste and Eve slapped her playfully.

“What is so bad about this cardigan?”

“Where would you like me to start Eve? To be fair when I think of you you’re generally not wearing a lot of clothes at all but I can assure you, you’re never wearing that!” Villanelle countered suggestively and suddenly the air was electric between them again.
Villanelle watched as Eve seemed to grow shy. It was very sexy. And kind of…endearing.

“It’s okay Eve. I’m not here to seduce you. I wouldn’t be dumb enough to do that a second time without frisking you for a knife and besides, sex with traumatised people is no fun and goes against my principals!”

Eve looked at her in surprise and Villanelle put her hands up in the air like she was revealing a magic trick.

“I know! The assassin without a conscience for the most part has a couple of ethics. Who knew?”
Eve’s face clouded over as she pondered the “traumatised” part of Villanelle’s words and as though she could read Eve’s mind she gently said.
“That piece of shit won’t ever bother you again by the way. I took care of it!”

“Why did you take care of it?” Eve asked.

“Because he did this.” Villanelle said as her eyes filled with rage and she brushed Eve’s glorious curls away from her neck to examine the thick fingerprint bruise marks on her delicate neck.

“Because he did this to you Eve.”

Eve was shaking as Villanelle leant in to place the most delicate, feather light kiss on the side of her neck.

“Villanelle” she whispered almost desperately and Villanelle moved back from her neck to gaze into her eyes.

“I think maybe I don't hate it when you call me Oksana!” Eve felt a nervous little lump rise in her throat but she swallowed it.

"Oksana. What did you do to him? I want to know."

Villanelle smiled. How astonishing it was to meet someone as fucked up as she was. Even more astonishing, was the fact that Eve finally seemed to be realising this was the case.“I cut off his fingers one by one with a variety of instruments. And then I made him eat them. Well only some of them. I kept the rest to show you so you knew he wouldn’t be strangling you again. Then I killed him slowly!”

Eve’s eyes widened in surprise and more than a little pride. “You cut off his fingers and brought them to me?”
Villanelle nodded with a mischievous grin “I did. And I took some cool crime scene pictures just for you. Carolyn said maybe I should just send you flowers but….”

“Oh no way! Severed fingers of my attacker are so much cooler than flowers!” Eve exclaimed vehemently.

“I know right?” Villanelle’s face lit up and both women began to giggle. “They’re in my bag outside I will go and get them!”

Eve grabbed Villanelles arm as she turned to leave and pulled her back. She stared at the young woman before her and marvelled at her dichotomy. She was sociopathic but in this moment, oddly sweet. Cold but so warm and funny. Dressed so much more plainly than she was accustomed to seeing her attired but still so very beautiful. And she had come back to her. She had come back to Eve when she’d been terrified she would never see her again.

Villanelle looked at the conflicted expressions flashing across Eve’s face with concern. Was she having another meltdown? Was Eve scared she was going out to get a weapon? Should she tell Eve the extent of her role in protecting her from what had happened?
Suddenly Eve lunged forward from her seated position on the counter and threw her arms around Villanelles neck. “I missed you!”

Villanelle felt her chest grow tight and her lower lip tremble a little. She threaded her hands through Eve’s hair, inhaling the subtle cherry blossom fragrance of her tumbling curls before wrapping her arms around her and lifting her off the counter.“I missed you too baby!” she whispered as she stood in the kitchen holding Eve in her arms.

Eve began to sob softly when Villanelle called her baby but Villanelle only pulled Eve’s legs more snugly around her hips and whispered.
“Just breathe with me!”

Chapter Text

Eve’s eyes fluttered open on the couch and as she became more lucid her senses registered an incredible smell wafting through the house. Pulling herself into a sitting position she realised she must have fallen asleep on the couch. She suddenly realised how hungry she was. Standing up she noticed how cosy and warm the house was and as she walked towards the kitchen she was surprised to see Villanelle preparing dinner. Though she’d never seen her like this.

She was wearing a pair of dusty pink beautifully cut lounge pants and matching unzipped hoodie over a blush pink top that said ‘Wake me for champagne’ in metallic rose gold cursive. Her hair was freshly washed and tumbled around and underneath her chest like a golden honeyed halo, longer than it had been the last time Eve had seen it and with a slight wave she didn’t realise was there. It was parted on the side, coming across her forehead to tuck behind her ear. And her face, her beautiful face was completely makeup free. She looked so soft, so fresh and so very young. So effortlessly pretty.

As Villanelle stood tossing the salad Eve noted she was also a little slimmer not that she had needed to lose any weight. She couldn’t get over how at ease she suddenly felt with Villanelle. She didn’t know if it was the events of the day or if she was in a total state of shock and had lost her mind. She just knew she was grateful Villanelle was still there.

As though sensing her presence Villanelle looked up and gave Eve a big smile. “Well hello there sleepyhead. I hope you’re hungry!” her voice was full of warmth and Eve moved closer, unable to stop the surprising pleasure at Villanelle being so pleased to see her.
“Starving actually. How long was I out?”

Villanelle took a moment to take in the sexy adorableness that was Eve with sleep mussed curls. How desperately she wanted to thread her hands through it and fuck her senseless. Shaking herself out of that little fantasy she looked at her watch as she took the salad bowl over to the table.

“Only about an hour and a half!” She turned back to Eve and gave her a slightly unsure smile ‘I sent for some of my things, and dinner ingredients. And I used your bathroom. I had blood all over me.”

Eve laughed in spite of herself, trying valiantly to get her mind off Villanelle in her shower and wondering why her mind had gone there so quickly and naturally. “That’s fine. And whatever you’ve made smells divine. Can I do anything to help?”

“ Yes. Have dinner with me ?” Villanelle said as she walked to where Eve stood and took her hand in a gentle yet somehow commanding manner. The electricity hit Eve like a lightning bolt and she stood staring at their interlocked hands.
“Fuck” Villanelle cursed to herself as she felt Eve’s hands in hers. Where had that come from? She’d never felt anything so powerful from just a simple touch and forced herself to poker face. “Sit please!” she said as she led Eve over to the chair and pulled it out for her to sit.
Eve sighed a little at the loss of contact when Villanelle let go but her eyes soon fell to the incredible smelling tagliette bolognaise in front of her.

“Please help yourself to some food Eve” Villanelle encouraged her as she poured them both a glass of wine and Eve heaped some pasta onto her plate before passing the bowl back to Villanelle. After scooping some salad Eve realised Villanelle had only placed a small amount of pasta on her own plate, no salad and wasn’t eating with nearly as much gusto as she had burst into the house and asked to have dinner.

“Oksana aren’t you hungry? ” Eve asked gently and Villanelle was a little surprised by her attentiveness.

“Oh…I had all my wisdom teeth taken out a couple of weeks ago. They were causing problems. It’s been a bit of a bumpy ride and I’m still on a stupid semi soft food diet, nothing too hot. Have to take it slow, let it heal. Boooooooring! I hope the pasta is okay for you though?”
“The weight loss” Eve thought to herself and the tell-tale slight rounder face around the jawline that Eve noticed at that moment from the last of the swelling.

“The pasta is great. I’m so sorry. I had mine taken out when I was about your age too and it was horrific. What hospital were you in? Are you still in pain?”

Villanelle shrugged nonchalantly “It’s not so safe for me to be in a hospital when anyone can just come and find me. I had it done in the dentists’ chair. At an exceptional facility of course and then just took all the pain killers home with me and rode it out.”

Eve was horrified as she remembered the endless bleeding, the vomiting, the nausea, swelling and the pain. “Oh my god! By yourself? You poor thing, that’s awful!” It occurred to her she’d focused so much on the extravagance and zero fucks given of Villanelle’s life she’d never really pondered how lonely it must be sometimes.

Villanelle didn’t know what to do. Eve was visibly affected by her plight and the fact that she was so affected by it was now affecting her.
“It’s okay Eve, really I’m pretty tough remember?” She tried so valiantly to shrug it off.

“No it’s not!” Eve countered and stared straight into Villanelles eyes. “You should have had someone taking care of you.”

Villanelle leant forward, challenging her “I don’t need anyone taking care of me Eve. Nobody would want to tak..”

“I would have!” Eve cut her off vehemently. “I would have taken care of you!”

Villanelles eyes widened in surprise and the defensiveness in her posture was instantly diffused. “You…You would have? But why Eve?”

Eve suddenly felt very small and scrutinized “I don’t know. Because you’ve taken care of me tonight? Because that’s what you do when you like somebody. You take care of them when they’re sick”

“Oh Eve. You like me?” Villanelle almost whispered as she smiled in delight.

“I don’t know” Eve gasped as she began to unravel. “Yes. No. Yes. I like you and then I loathe you but still I can’t stop liking you. You infuriate me completely yet somehow endear yourself to me especially sitting there all fresh faced and adorable and I don’t know what’s come over me tonight but I’m just so glad you’re here and it’s really nice. It’s just so nice you know? And I don’t know what to do!”

Villanelle was normally unsure how to appropriately respond to an emotional outburst of this kind but this was Eve. Her Eve. And she’d just been brutally and so beautifully honest so she knew she had to say something ‘Please let me get this right! Don’t fuck this up” she internally pleaded with herself.

“It’s okay. You don’t have to know what to do Eve. You could just eat your pasta!”

“NO it’s not alright!” Eve snapped becoming even more agitated and Villanelle reached over to run her fingers through Eves wild curls soothingly.

“Eve, did you ever think that maybe when you run from me you’re really running from yourself? Because you fear what is inside of you. That you tell yourself everything about me disgusts you because you feel fear and shame for who you are when really you have no reason to because that darkness inside of you, the one that makes you different, makes you feel lonely and the one that draws you back to me again and again is what makes you exquisite?”

Eve was rendered speechless by Villanelles very perceptive assessment of her internal vicious cycle.“No…Well maybe. Not quite in a nutshell like that till now” she said almost in a whisper as she let the weight of Villanelle’s words wash over. “You think I’m exquisite?” Eve asked and felt herself melt a little as the younger woman’s piercing gaze suddenly became uncertain and self-conscious.

“Well yes. A little bit. Sometimes. Most of the time. You know what? You’re right tonight is weird. I don’t hate it though I mainly like it. You know we could always fight or something? I could get my weapons out. I have a knife in my bra!” Villanelle pulled a knife out from under her top and Eve rolled her eyes.

“Of course you do! Brat!” Eve teased.

Villanelle rubbed her left breast “I’m going to leave that out actually it was pointy against my tits”

Eve had to bite back a smile. Why did this girl have to be so damn amusing? It was infuriating.“Do you really want to fight me?” Eve asked her with a piercing gaze that rocked Villanelle and it was Eve’s turn to waver as Villanelle’s face took on the most ethereal yet predatory expression.

“Yes. I mean I’ve had dreams about it. But in my dreams we fight each other. And we’re in the bedroom. In our own twisted chaos. And I get to make you scream over and over again all night long until you collapse in my arms a quivering mess”

Eve picked up her glass of wine and took a very large gulp as Villanelle chuckled.

“Eve, drinking your wine won’t take the picture out of your head baby!” Eve blushed, something that Villanelle found to be incredibly cute and arousing. But still she decided to through her dinner companion a life ring.

“You know it hasn’t been all bad! The liquid diet helped me shed a few pounds. After all the bread and pastries in Paris, All it took was for me to get my period and I’d have a cupcake top!"

Eve looked at her in confusion “A what?”

Villanelle looked at her in surprise “You know! A cupcake top! When your hips and stomach bulge over your favourite tight jeans and pants. A cupcake top.” Eve burst out laughing and Villanelle was mystified “What? Why are you laughing?”

“You mean a muffin top! The bulge you’re talking about is called a muffin top. Not a cupcake top” Eve said in between giggles and Villanelle scrunched her nose up.

“Okay genius! English isn’t my first language. Besides, why would I want a muffin top? It’s basically just a more healthy yet depressed and naked cake. I want the cupcake top with the frosted buttercream icing and pink sparkles! But then that’s probably how I ended up getting the cupcake top!”

Both women cracked up laughing and Eve shook her head. “Do you know I haven’t laughed this much in so long?”

Villanelle beamed “I’m glad. You should do it more often. You have a pretty wonderful laugh Eve!”

“Thank you” Eve said softly as she let her eyes roam over Villanelle’s beautiful face lit up in a rare moment of honest unguarded joy. There was something so real and reassuring about the fact that as stunning and seemingly confident as she was, she fell victim to the same insecurities as other women.Feeling bold Eve leant a little closer, her eyes coming to rest on one particular feature and now it was Villanelle feeling the scrutiny.

“What is it?” She asked in confusion and Eve’s lips curled into a delighted smile.

“It’s nothing. It’s just the cute little freckles along your cheekbone. I’ve never seen them before. They’re gorgeous”
Villanelle bit her lip and put her hand up to where her freckles sat. An almost shy little smile curling at her lips.

“So cute” Eve thought to herself and wondered if she was twisted for feeling incredibly proud that she was likely the only person the great and powerful Villanelle ever let her guard down enough to be so vulnerable and soft around.

“We should eat” Villanelle said almost pleadingly, not sure what to say or do. Wishing she could scrape the freckles off her face but wanting Eve to look at them and be fascinated with them forever. Eve could see her floundering and took a big spoonful of pasta. Of course it was heaven.

‘This is amazing!” she said appreciatively and Villanelle tasted her own handiwork.

“It‘s pretty good” she agreed. They ate in silence for a few minutes and then Villanelle took a deep breath.

“I’m not good at being taken care of Eve. I don’t really know how. But you looking after me. I think I would have liked that.”
The honesty of Villanelle’s confession almost brought Eve undone. She knew how hard it was for her to say that. She could see her struggling. She didn’t say anything in reply. She simply put her hand up to her face and cupped Villanelle’s cheek with a tenderness she didn’t know she possessed. And as she had done in the kitchen, Villanelle leant into her touch, grasping her wrist. But this time, she closed her eyes, just quietly existing in the moment. And Eve didn’t think she had ever seen her look quite so beautiful.

Chapter Text

Villanelle finished the last of the dishes then headed upstairs to check on Eve. There she lay on the bed wearing a horrid navy and red checked pyjama set that was at least a size too big for her and could have belonged to a man. Villanelle found herself smiling at Eve’s hopeless fashion sense as she shook her head and made a mental note to facilitate a wardrobe update.

“Hey” Eve said softly as she noticed Villanelle standing in the doorway smiling at her. “You probably want to go get checked into your hotel huh?”

Villanelle noticed there was a little disappointment in her tone and it warmed even her usually cold heart. “I can stay a while. I want you to feel safe. Why don’t you get under the covers?” She walked to the bed and pulled back the covers while Eve shuffled under them.

“You can get in if you want?” Eve offered in a small voice, unsure of where it even came from.

Villanelle pondered her offer. She wanted to, she really wanted to get in the bed. But she couldn’t help but remember what happened the last time they’d been lying in bed together. And without even realising her hand came up to the now healed stab wound.‘It’s okay, I’m good here!” She said as she tucked Eve in and cautiously sat on the other side of the bed but on top of the covers.

‘Too soon?” Eve said regretfully as she looked at Villanelle’s hand clasped to her side. She somehow knew she’d hurt the young assassin much more than either of them had admitted thus far.

‘It’s fine!” Villanelle said dismissively as she realised she’d shown her vulnerability and Eve sighed

“It’s not fine!” she countered and Villanelle looked at her dangerously, but couldn’t hide the small smile that toyed at the corner of her mouth.

“Eve I can always bust your ass over it when you’re not recovering from something so shitty if it makes you feel any better!”

“A little!” Eve conceded and Villanelle’s eyes filled with lust “I knew you’d like it rough!”

“Oh uh….I wasn’t implying that….um” Eve stammered as Villanelle brushed a wayward curl away from her forehead and back onto the pillow.

“It’s okay. You and I are going to happen Eve. It’s inevitable. You’re just not ready yet. I get it. Come on close your eyes and let the medication you took to help you sleep do its work.” Villanelle inched closer and began stroking her hair.

Eve couldn’t believe how aroused she was by Villanelles quiet confidence that the two of them would be lovers. It was so different from the cocky arrogant kind she’d seen from her. And the way Villanelle had just established she wasn’t ready yet and wasn’t looking to push her. What was that about? She would have thought of all people, the assassin who usually showed no mercy would just take what she wanted. But oh dear god her hands stroking her hair felt like heaven after such a horrific day. She even found herself closing her eyes.

“That’s it Eve, close your eyes and go to sleep……so I can throw out all your hideous clothes!” Villanelle teased and Eve wrinkled her nose.

“I like my clothes!” she protested but could feel herself sinking more and more deeply into the mattress.

Villanelle continued stroking Eve’s hair until she was certain she was sleeping. And then, suddenly feeling incredibly weary from the events of the day and with her reservations forgotten, she peeled back the covers and slipped into bed beside her.

“Goodnight beautiful Eve!” She whispered into the darkness.

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Eve tossed in her sleep. She could feel the thick fingers around her throat, see the rage in his eyes. She couldn’t breathe. Why couldn’t she breathe?
Villanelle woke to the sensation of Eve thrashing around in the bed and took a moment to register where she was. “Eve’s house” She remembered foggily.

“NO! STOP! LET ME GO! PLEASE! IT HURTS!” Eve screamed and Villanelle’s heart started pounding. Eve was having a nightmare. She sounded terrified. How was she supposed to fix it? How could she stop the pain?

“Eve” She cried loudly as she shook the frantically tossing woman beside her and gasped when she felt the dampness of her pyjama top and the heat in her skin. “Eve you’re having a nightmare!”

“I CAN’T BREATHE!” She screamed and Villanelle grabbed Eve under the arms and shook her.

“EVE WAKE UP!” She shouted frantically and Eve’s eyes flew open, darting wildly around the room.

“Shhhhh good girl!” Villanelle cooed as she pulled a sobbing and shaking Eve close “Jesus you’re burning up Eve!” she murmured into Eve’s cheek as she brushed her damp curls back from her face.

“You were having a nightmare! Let’s get you out of this wet top” Villanelle grasped the bottom of the Pyjama top and pulled it up and off a still totally incoherent Eve before pulling her back into her arms.

“You’re safe. I’ve got you!” Villanelle whispered as she rocked Eve gently in her embrace, pulling the cover up around her bare shoulders when she shivered.
Eve felt the terror that had gripped her so tightly begin to dissipate yet she snuggled more deeply into Villanelle’s embrace, revelling in the soothing touch of her fingers stroking her bare back.

“You got into bed after all!” Eve sniffled in surprise and Villanelle chuckled

“Don’t be thinking you’ve won Eve Polastri! It was a long flight and an even longer day!”

“I’m Sorry! for what just happened” Eve whispered in a raspy voice as she pulled back to look at the young woman holding her with such surprising tenderness and Villanelle stared at Eve in lustful awe. Her beautiful face wet with tears, her skin flushed and damp. Little tendrils of curls stuck to her forehead, shudders from the aftershock of her nightmare running through her body. She was a completely broken and undone mess. And she was exquisite like this.

“Don’t be sorry. How do you feel?” Villanelle asked with genuine concern and Eve pursed her lips tightly together, trying to say anything other than what was on her mind but failing.

“I feel naked!” she practically squeaked and Villanelle’s eyes widened in delight.

“Did you just squeak? Eve that is very cute….and kind of sexy. I think want to make you squeak like that! Besides you’re not naked you’re only topless. And I didn’t look!”

“You didn’t? Why not?” Eve whispered shyly and Villanelle wrapped her finger around one of Eve’s curls.

“Not because I don’t want to. Because I want to very much believe me. But because taking things from you is no fun if you don’t give them willingly. If you’re not of sound enough body and mind to give them. I will take many things from you Eve. But only when you’re ready to give them to me.”

Villanelle cupped Eve’s face between her hands and wiped the last of her tears away with the pads of her thumbs. “This is how I keep you safe. And how you believe that I can” she said with a sincerity that took Eve’s breath away.

She brought her hands up to rest on Villanelle’s at her face “I believe you. I don’t know why. But I do!”

Villanelle pressed her forehead against Eve’s and shivered as she felt Eve’s arm snake around her hips and slip underneath her shirt.“Eve...” she pleaded as Eve’s fingers began to trace up her spine, making her shiver. But nothing prepared her for Eve’s lips on hers suddenly, kissing her so tentatively and with such a beautifully fragile uncertainty she felt her breath catch in her throat. Villanelle deepened the kiss, rolling Eve onto her back and kissing her passionately and as her hand began travelling down to the waistband of her pyjama pants she managed to check herself, just barely, remembering Eve’s state and broke the kiss.

Both of them were gasping for breath and if the kiss was Intoxicating to Villanelle then the sight of Eve lying beneath her, the rise and fall of her chest, her delicate collarbones and the line of her sternum leading down to her beautiful breasts, her tiny waist and delicate creamy pale skin was enough to make Villanelle want to throw her against the wall and fuck her until they both broke to pieces.

“Do you have any idea how beautiful you are Eve?” Villanelle asked so earnestly that Eve threw her arms around Villanelles neck and kissed her much more fervently this time, lips, mouths, tongues duelling as months of barely repressed passion and emotion was unleashed.

“Eve….baby we have to stop!” Villanelle whined between kisses but Eve pulled her back defiantly

“I don’t want to!”

“Not the first time, Not like this when you’re hurt. If we start this, You know it won’t be gentle.” Villanelle tried to reason with her but kept getting sucked back into the vortex of her heavenly mouth. “Fuck” Villanelle moaned as Eve brought her hand up to her bare chest and placed it on her breast

“Touch me!” Eve encouraged her and Villanelle flicked her nipple with her thumb, groaning as Eve instinctively pressed her pelvis against hers.

“ I knew you’d be so hot” Villanelle gasped against Eve’s neck as she ran her tongue up the length of her throat and when Eve’s hand slipped up her t shirt towards her breast she abruptly pulled away and sat up, pulling Eve up by the wrists with her.“Okay, come here!” She said as she took off the hoodie she still wore and slipped it onto Eve, zipping it up at the front.

Villanelle was more worked up than she had ever been but as she looked at Eve in her hoodie that was quite oversized on the smaller woman she found herself smiling indulgently “You’re smaller than I realised. You’re such an engaging mesmerising presence Eve I don’t think I ever quite noticed how petit you are!”

Eve shrank back from Villanelle. Confused by what had just happened , feeling suddenly bereft at the loss of contact and overcome with sudden shyness at the scrutiny of her lover’s gaze.

“Yeah well. I come from generations of small Asian women!” she explained in a small voice as she lay down on the bed and curled up on her side.
Villanelle sensed the change in her demeanour immediately and realised Eve had assumed she disapproved.

“I love it!” She said emphatically as she lay beside Eve and Eve turned to stare at her in surprise, her response clearly unexpected.

“You do?” Eve implored and Villanelle kissed her nose.
“Yes I do, my sexy little Korean doll…….hmmm I wonder, do you bend like a doll too? We’ll have to find out sometime!”

“Well I was clearly trying to show you, you were the one who stopped me!” Eve said sulkily but couldn’t stop the small smile that danced in her eyes and Villanelle cracked up laughing.

“Yeah okay I will give you that one now come here and don’t make me regret my decision any more than I already am right now!” Villanelle rolled Eve over so she could spoon her and caught Eve trying to unzip the hoodie.

“Stop that! come here мое сердце!” The Russian phrase had left Villanelle’s lips without her even thinking about it until it was sitting in the air and she found herself holding her breath.

“What does that mean?” Eve asked, her back to Villanelle and Villanelle was silent for a moment, unsure of what to do or say. She closed her eyes and took a deep breath before wrapping her arms around Eve’s waist and pulling her closer.

“It means my annoyance! Now go to sleep Eve!” She said sternly and Eve shook her head and giggled.

Villanelle buried her face in Eve’s curls and let herself be lost in the serenity of the moment. Maybe the words would come with time.

Chapter Text

Eve sat in a trendy bar for Kenny’s birthday drinks hoping to see Villanelle. It had been a week since she’d stormed back into Eve’s life. She was now a valued employee at MI6 at Carolyn’s invitation and though Eve had seen her in the tiny office she shared with Kenny and Jess a couple of times, Villanelle’s “unique” skill set was being utilised in a different department for the time being. Which wasn’t necessarily a bad thing. Villanelle had been nothing but supportive of Eve since her attack. Guarded at times, but supportive, attentive, nurturing.

 

Still, the fire always flickering between them flared every now and then and there had been some tension. Mainly because every time things got too intimate between the two of them, Villanelle stopped it. She always cited Eve’s trauma and bruising as the reason but Eve had gotten frustrated the evening before Villanelle has left for a mission only 4 days after she had re-entered her life and asked her if it was the fact she’d stabbed her the last time she truly let her guard down. And the ensuing fight had been a doozy.

 

One that ended with Villanelle spitting a barely coherent rant of furious Russian at Eve that she didn’t remotely understand and then storming out. Villanelle had returned that morning and the only sign Eve had she was back was that she’d found a beautifully packed bento lunch box that looked almost to artistic to eat with a note that said “Sorry baby!” on it. Carolyn had said Villanelle was in the building but hadn’t said where. She wouldn’t reveal what had transpired while Villanelle was gone. All she’d told Eve was that she’d invited Villanelle to Kenny’s birthday gathering. Eve didn’t know how Kenny had felt about that. There had certainly been some reservations from he and Jess at Eve and Villanelle’s obvious growing closeness

 

Eve hadn’t wanted to admit it but she’d missed Villanelle terribly while she was gone. The young woman was like a stray kitten who had crept inside her home and her heart and endeared herself when Eve wasn’t looking. A dangerous mysterious killer stray kitten who equally bewitched, delighted and confused her. No one could make her as furious as Villanelle could. Yet no one could make her feel as comfortable, as at peace and yet utterly alive at the same time. She figured she had better buy the birthday boy a drink but when she moved from the booth she stopped In her tracks at the sight of Villanelle standing down the other end of the bar talking with Carolyn, Kenny and some other young woman she didn’t recognise.

 

Villanelle was wearing a pair of high waisted dark denim jeans that fit her like a second skin and a dusty pink midriff top with blouson sleeves that wrapped around her upper torso and tied in a gorgeous bow at her back, leaving inches of her creamy skin bare. Her hair was parted in the middle and pulled back into a simple bun and she had honey blonde layers loosely framing her beautiful face. She looked so very beautiful, so young and fresh. Though Eve had become aware pink was Vilanelle’s favourite colour and she seemed drawn to many pastels and sorbet shades, the juxtaposition of the doll like exterior and the killer within still took her by surprise. And as Villanelle caught sight of Eve and a huge smile of delight spread across her delicate features Eve couldn’t help but smile back.

 

Especially when Villanelle walked over to Eve with child like glee and picked her up, spinning her around before placing her back on her feet, gently kissing her forehead and whispering ‘Hi мое сердце I missed you!”

 

“My annoyance!” Eve thought as she let Villanelle’s playful russian term of endearment wash over her an looked her up and down appreciatively once more “You look stunning!”

 

Villanelles face lit up “Thank you Eve, you’re looking very beautiful yourself. I knew that outfit would look amazing on you.”

 

Eve looked down at the cream coloured off the shoulder blouise and black perfectly tailored pants Villanelle had insisted on buying her among other things and smiled.

 

“Okay so it feels kind of amazing!”

 

Villanelle shrugged and said “I’m not going to say I told you so!”

 

“Your face is saying it now you incorrigible little shit!”

 

Both of them cracked up laughing and Eve put a hand up to Villanelle’s face. “I missed you too!”

 

Villanelle leant into Eve’s hand for a moment and then threaded her fingers through it and gently tugged Eve towards the bar. “Come, I’m with the most gorgeous woman in the bar and I want to buy her a drink.”

 

Eve blushed a little but followed, feeling better than she had in days.

 

Eve and Villanelle had found themselves two chairs in a darkened little nook at the bar. “Who is that woman with Kenny?” Eve asked curiously as she looked at the slightly geeky but attractive in a girl next door kind of way young woman who obviously had Kenny enraptured.

 

Villanelle sipped her wine and passed a glass to Eve. “It’s his birthday present. I found her in a café this afternoon. Pretty little nerd. Loves computers and the internet. Wanted to meet nice boy to do sad geek things with. So I said I know a boy like this and it was his birthday and brought her to Kenny”

 

Eve bit back a chuckle at her explanation “You got him a girl for his birthday?”

 

Villanelle threw her hands up. “It’s his birthday, Everyone deserves birthday sex on their birthday. And goodness knows Kenny needs all the help he can get!”

 

“Careful Oksana, people might start to think you’re nice!” Eve teased and Villanelle scrunched her delicate nose up.

 

“I know, I worry about this too, but I killed someone yesterday and I’ll probably keep doing it. I think I still have balance!”

 

The offhand manner in which she said it as though she was saying she did a load of laundry equally unsettled and fascinated Eve. She decided to press a little further and see if she could get some answers about the way she’d stormed out

 

“Yes, your mission. You were furious when you left my house the evening before and…..”

 

“But I made you that lunch today and left you a note. I said I was sorry!” Villanelle cut her off and Eve found herself looking into eyes full of such child- like innocence it was hard to believe they belonged to anyone capable of killing but then that was part of Villanelle’s charm.

 

Eve took her hand. “You did and it was so lovely and I really appreciate it but we need to….”

 

“You should really eat better Eve, It’s lucky I’m back to take care of you.” Villanelle cut her off again and Eve shook her head.

 

“I don’t need you to take care of me!”

 

Villanelle kissed Eve’s nose “It’s okay, I like doing it!” Eve had to fight so hard not to melt at the earnestness of her sweet little gesture and harden herself.

 

“You don’t mind taking care of me, you’re just not attracted to me, you don’t want to have sex with me….you….you don’t want me” Her voice trailed off to a whisper as she laid bare the insecurities that had been tearing her apart.

 

Villanelle’s eyes widened “That’s what you think? You think that I don’t want you? Eve every time I’m with you it’s all that I can do to stop myself from throwing you against a wall and fucking you until you can’t even see straight. I think about it all the time.”

 

Eve didn’t understand “Then why don’t you? I feel like every time we get close you pull away from me, and if it’s not because you don’t want me it must be because I stabbed you and now you can’t let yourself get close to me”

 

“It’s not that” Villanelle snapped and then sighed as she saw Eve’s completely bewildered expression. “Maybe it’s a little bit about the stabbing but it’s not in the way that you think.”

“Then explain it to me!” Eve implored in exasperation. Villanelle was silent but she didn’t need to speak. Eve could see the entire gamut of conflicting emotions running across her face. It suddenly occurred to Eve that she had never seen the younger woman look so fragile.

 

“Sweetheart please…” She pleaded as she brushed Villanelle’s hair out of her eyes and was encouraged by Villanelle’s softening body language. Slipping off the bar stool she stood between Villanelle’s legs. “My beautiful girl, talk to me” She placed a soft kiss on Villanelle’s cheek remembering how the young assassin had absolutely melted in her arms when they’d been making out on the couch and she’d let that slip possessively. She’d thought Villanelle would fight it but she seemed to submit even further into Eve’s embrace, and then she’d shut down and left yet again.

 

Villanelle took a deep breath “I loved my life before you. Or at least I thought I did. But I liked the freedom, my cool flat, the money. But it was also Lonely. There was just me, and sometimes Konstantin. I would go on missions and come back injured sometimes and say I was fine but sometimes I would be really hurt and I can’t go and just get help like other people because of what I do, I could be found. So I would just go home to my empty flat and pain killers and a bag of ice and wait it out. Often there would be threats from my employers about mistakes they felt I’d made, I’d be sent on another mission whether I was recovered or not.” She stopped for a moment and took a big gulp of her wine.

 

Eve’s heart went out to her. When she’d gone in and trashed her apartment all she had seen was the excess of Villanelle’s life. She’d never really pondered just how alone she was in it all.

 

“But then today I got back early enough to make you lunch. I got brought back to MI6 where I had immediate debriefing with Carolyn. I knew exactly where I stood, no threats of paying for any mistakes she believed I’d made. I had a psych evaluation, immediate medical treatment including an X ray of an old broken ankle that flared, physiotherapy, prescription medication for the pain given to me. Then I was told it was company policy that I have the rest of the day and evening off to rest. Everything over and wrapped up neatly. And for the first time ever I had somebody to come home to. I didn’t even care if you were mad at me. I just knew that I would break into your house and cook you dinner and let you yell at me for a while then kiss you. Maybe put a knife at your throat if the yelling was irritating me and threaten you a tiny bit but mainly kiss you. You know before Kenny’s party happened at least.”

 

“Such a romantic!” Eve teased and Villanelle smiled sheepishly and shrugged. “I’m not good at feelings. Most of the time I don’t even know what they are. I just know I have a lot of them about you!”

 

Eve felt Villanelle’s revelation go straight to her heart. ‘You’re actually doing really well. Better than I ever gave you credit for being capable of actually’ She gently played with a tendril of Villanelle’s hair and continued to gently peel back her layers. “But I’m just a little confused about what this has to do with us.”

 

Villanelle skulled the rest of her wine and pleaded with herself internally for the courage to give Eve what she needed so that she didn’t feel lacking in any way. “It’s nice. It’s nice to have support. To have proper doctors and medicine. It’s nice to be less alone. To be less lonely. To have more in my life than work. To have someone to come home to. Last time you and I were on a bed and things got sexual you were so freaked out you stabbed me. I know you wouldn’t do it again but……”

 

Eve inched closer as Villanelle looked down and avoided her gaze.

 

“If we fuck and you wake up disgusted with yourself that you had sex with the psychopath assassin and want me out of your world. Nice life goes away. Less lonely goes away. But the most important thing, the most important person to me….goes away too”

 

When Villanelle looked up again Eve was aghast to see unshed tears in her eyes.
“Oh Oksana, sweetheart no. That’s not going to happen. I’m not going to go anywhere!”

 

She threaded her fingers in between Villanelles but as if Villanelle suddenly became aware of her
vulnerable and emotional state she suddenly snatched her fingers out.

 

“What is happening? There is something in my eyes!” She exclaimed, clearly unnerved and Eve tried to reassure her. “It’s okay they’re just tears!”

 

“How do I get it out? I don’t like it, it burns!” Villanelle gasped, her panic increasing and Eve realised she probably very rarely let herself cry.

 

“You just blink and they fall out!”

 

“No that is a bad idea! I’ve seen girls do that before, sometimes when I kill them and their mascara runs and it leaves wobbly streaks all down their foundation. I look incredible that would be stupid!” Villanelle flapped her hands towards her as though she could dry her eyes and Eve shook her head, looking at her adoringly.

 

“Do you have any idea how cute you look right now?”

 

“I am not cute! I am a psychopath remember? I am a highly skilled assassin. I do evil mean shit. All the time! Look!” She leant over and pinched Eve’s bare shoulder, causing her to jump.

 

“Ow! You little shit! That hurt! You are such a child!”

 

“I’m sorry, I shouldn’t have done that Eve! I don’t know why I did!” Villanelle apologised sincerely as she leant over and placed little kisses on Eve’s shoulder.

 

“Because you’re an incorrigible little shit that’s why!” Eve exclaimed but her voice was full of affection.

 

“Just get it out!” Villanelle pleaded and Eve reached for a napkin, folding it up carefully.

 

“Okay Okasana, just hold still!” she urged her as she placed the napkin up to her eyes and gently pushed Villanelles head forward, guiding the tissue to each of her eyes and drying them with infinite tenderness.

 

She then used the pads of her thumbs to even out the ever so slightly smudged eyeliner under Villanelle’s eyes. “There you go baby. Perfect!”

 

Villanelle closed her eyes as she let Eve’s throatily whispered term of endearment wash over her. ‘I swear Eve if you call me that while we’re here one more time I’ll slip my hand in your pants, hook my fingers into your pussy and use it to pull you up to me and suck your tongue until you can’t breathe. Believe me when I say I don’t even care who sees”

 

Eve blushed furiously but couldn’t stop herself from challenging Villanelle. “Promise?”
“Eve!” Villanelle groaned in desire and frustration and Eve stroked her beautiful face.

 

“I understand now. Thank you for explaining it to me. I know it wasn’t easy for you. I’ll stop being so pushy about the sex stuff!”

 

Villanelle shook her head. “No don’t do that, I love that you’re so pushy about the sex stuff. I masturbated about it a lot. I came so hard in the toilet on the plane coming back that I almost blacked out. Have you ever worn latex?”

 

“Oh wow…..okay” Eve stammered and Villanelle picked up on her surprise.

 

“Too much again?” Villanelle asked, unsure of how much she should be revealing.

 

“Yes….No…..I don’t know” Eve said as she eyed Villanelle thoughtfully. “Somehow you always know how to be too much and just the right amount for me all at the same time!”

 

Villanelle’s beamed. She was smiling from the inside out and it was the most beautiful thing Eve thought she had ever seen. Her thoughts all went blank as Villanelle’s lips pressed against hers passionately.

 

When the kiss broke Villanelle pulled Eve even more tightly in between her legs and Eve let her thumb gently stroke the bare skin on the younger woman’s back.

 

“You are a killer…..and definitely shades of a psychopath….but are you my beautiful girl?”

 

Villanelle’s lower lip quivered a little and she nodded silently, pursing her lips together tightly to prevent another emotional outpouring as she put her arms around Eve’s shoulders.

 

“Then the rest will work itself out!” Eve said gently.

 

Villanelle didn’t say anything. She just pulled Eve to her and held her like she wasn’t ever going to let go.

Chapter Text

Eve stood in her bedroom and slipped off her trousers, smiling as she thought back on the evening’s events. After Villanelle’s honest revelation the tension had dissipated somehow and they’d had a lovely evening together. They’d walked back to Eve’s and when Eve’s new shoes were hurting her feet, Villanelle had insisted on piggy backing her the rest of the way, something she’d done effortlessly much to Eve’s eventual delight. Especially when Villanelle began weaving and ducking in intricate patterns and running with Eve on her back. When they’d gotten inside the house Villanelle had headed straight up to the bedroom and unceremoniously dumped Eve on the bed before flopping down beside her where they both collapsed in fits of laughter.

She couldn’t wipe the smile off her face as she removed her white blouse. She wasn’t sure if it was because Villanelle had let herself be vulnerable in front of her, because they’d had such a nice night or if it was because Villanelle had revealed she’d slipped into Eve’s house before she went to the bar and left some things as she planned to stay the night. She just knew she felt happy.

Villanelle went to enter the bedroom and stopped in her tracks as she took in the sight of Eve wearing nothing but the lacy white strapless bra and panties set she’d bought her. “Oh wow” she gasped almost silently as she took in her petite figure framed perfectly by the feminine cut of the lingerie, the colour so pure and beautiful against her creamy ivory skin and such a contrast to her tumbling mass of dark curls. She was like a little doll.

“Do you have any idea how stunning you look right now Eve Polastri?” she said softly from the doorway.

Eve’s jaw nearly dropped as she looked at Villanelle clad in a simple but beautifully cut garnet coloured camisole top and matching hot pants. The colour did heavenly things to her green eyes and the modal fabric fit clung to her curves like a second skin.

“You look like a sports illustrated cover” Eve mused honestly and Villanelle laughed as she approached her.

“I don’t have a lot of pyjamas, I sleep naked a lot. But I didn’t want to make you uncomfortable!”

“Oh god!” Eve gasped, suddenly realising her state of undress. ‘I’m naked”

“Not quite yet!” Villanelle teased.

“Let me just get something!” Eve said as she reached for her pyjama top to cover up.

“не делай этого, моя изысканная красота” Villanelle said commandingly as she took both of Eve’s wrists between her hands and pulled her closer.

“What did you say?” Eve said with the same look of confusion she always got when Villanelle spoke Russian.

Villanelle brushed a wayward curl out of Eve’s face adoringly “I said don’t do that my exquisite beauty!” Eve’s eyes widened in surprise and then she broke into a delighted smile before looking down to avoid her lovers scrutiny but Villanelle tipped her chin back up so their eyes were level. “I can’t look at you if you cover up.”

Eve took a deep breath. “Do you wanna watch a movie?”

Villanelle ran a finger down the back of Eve’s spine making her shiver. “No baby, I don’t want to watch a movie right now. I want you to get on the bed”

Eve started to feel very overwhelmed and pulled away from Villanelle, backing away until her back was to the wall. ‘I can’t get on the bed!”

Villanelle started to doubt herself again. “Have you changed your mind? Is it because it’s with me? Do you feel ashamed?”

Eve wrapped her arms around her waist protectively “Yes it’s because it’s with you. Because you’re a supermodel with legs for days and beautiful and 25 years old. And more than that. With me, and believe me it still floors me constantly but with me you’re sweet, kind, doting, sensitive, protective and just….pretty freaking wonderful really despite the fact that you’re you know, a bit emotionally dysfunctional and don’t have the best relationships skills because honestly, either do I most of the time. But you do everything with such effortless ease and grace it shouldn’t surprise me that you’d have some awesome girlfriend skills”

Villanelle’s face lit up ‘Eve! Are you calling me your girlfriend?”

Eve shrugged ‘I don’t know, I’m 42 years old. I don’t know anything about this stuff!”

“But with the ass of a 30 year old!” Villanelle interjected trying to peer behind Eve but Eve shook her head in exasperation.

“Don’t do that Oksana. Don’t be funny and cute. You can’t just stand there being unbelievably sexy and funny and cute when I’m over here being an awkward loser. I’d be a terrible girlfriend. I know what they do. They have sex!”

Villanelle nodded slowly and agreed emphatically with a gleeful look in her eyes and a cheeky smirk. “They do Eve. They have lots and lots of sex!”

Eve shook her head “I’m not good at it. The sex stuff!”

“Oh I very much doubt that baby!” Villanelle said adamantly.

“I am….I’m so inexperienced. I was never the girl that men looked at. I was quiet and from an Asian conservative family. I can count the people I’ve slept with on one hand and I’d been with Nico since I wasn’t much older than you and he was just so…..missionary and even though I yearned for more and wanted to try more we didn’t. I’ve never even come close to being with a woman. I wouldn’t even know how. And I know after my hissy fit at the bar this must be confusing for you but I’m a total fucking mess because here I am looking at the most beautiful woman I have ever seen and you’re heaven and so experienced and I am an awkward geek and you’re asking me to get on the bed and I feel like my legs might collapse from under me at any moment not that it would matter after an outburst like this because you probably think I’m a complete mental case.”

Villanelle felt any fear and anxiety that Eve didn’t want her leave her body and her heart filled to the brim with empathy, compassion and adoration for the utterly beautiful disaster across the room from her. She was just completely overwhelmed by fear, nerves and anxiety. How she wished she could express to Eve just how much some of the things she had just said, meant to her. How she wished she was better at talking about her feelings.

“ Eve I think you are the most exquisite thing I have ever seen . Okay, so you don’t know about girl sex and I know a lot about it. But I don’t know much about being a girlfriend. A partner. But you make me want to learn. Honestly though a lot of the time I feel so lost because I don’t really understand feelings I just know I have so many of them for you. And I feel scared. I’ve felt happier than I have ever felt this last week but a lot of the time I’ve felt scared. I try to tell myself though that it’s okay because you look after me. And when I told you to get on the bed, If I had have known how nervous you were I would have said that We don’t have to do everything at once. I don’t want to rush you. Because I think that maybe we can help each other with the things we don’t know. You are the most important thing to me. You are mine Eve Polastri. You’re mine. I knew the first moment I saw you in that bathroom all those months ago that you would be mine. And I will look after you. Because If I didn’t, I wouldn’t deserve to be yours.”

Tears spilled down Eve’s face as she took in Villanelle’s sincere and heartfelt revelation. She shook her head in wonder at the young woman’s wisdom “How are you only 25?” she wiped her tears away but they were quickly replaced with more. “You are mine. And I’m yours. And I tried to hard to fight it but it just is! And I’m so scared that If I disappoint you….”

“Take off your bra baby!” Villanelle said softly and Eve felt herself freeze at the request. ‘What? I..” She stopped talking as Villanelle reached for the hem of her camisole and lifted it up and over hear head, revealing her full breasts, delicate rosy nipples and inches of smooth flesh down to her hot pants that sat low on her hips.

“Oh god. You are so beautiful!” Eve gasped.

Villanelle bit her lip almost shyly. She’d been told she was beautiful many times before, especially when she took her top off but she’d never been as affected as when Eve said it. Her Eve.

“You will feel better when we are skin to skin. I’m here. It’s just you and me. I will look after you baby I promise. I won’t even look at your tits even though it will pretty much kill me not to. You can even stay on your wall. Just take off your bra!”

There was something about the conviction in Villanelle’s eyes and voice that calmed Eve, just a little. And she reached around with shaking hands and undid her bra, letting it fall to the ground.

“Good girl” Villanelle cooed approvingly as she approached Eve and true to her word, Villanelle never took her eyes off Eve’s for a moment.She bent slightly in front of Eve, still maintaining eye contact and hooked her arms around her ass before lifting her up and pressing their chests together.

“There you go baby. Just breathe with me!” Villanelle whispered sweetly, as she held Eve tightly in her arms and wrapped her fingers in her curls, placing little kisses on her neck as Eve snuggled into her shoulder.

Eve felt her heart rate return to normal and her body begin to calm. Villanelle was right. Being skin to skin felt so much better. She didn’t move from her nook, even as Villanelle carried her over to the bed and sat down in the centre of it with her still nestled snugly in her arms. Villanelle gently rocked her in her arms and after a little while she could feel goosebumps popping up all over Eve’s back.

“Eve can you move your head from my shoulder? I’m going to put you under the covers and I don’t want to hurt your neck!”

“I can’t” came Eve’s muffled reply and Villanelle softly stroked her hair. ‘Why baby?”

Eve shakily moved her head from Villanelle’s shoulder to stare into her eyes. “Because I want to stay like this with you forever”

Villanelle felt her chest get tight and a lump rising in her throat and swallowed it. She took Eve’s face between her hands and began kissing her tears away with infinite gentleness. When she was done she looked at Eve with lust laden eyes. “Would you think less of me if I told you that I hate seeing you sad but tasting your tears turns me on?”

Eve shivered but not from cold this time. There it was, the darkness that always sat just below the surface and captivated her so. The darkness that played so nicely with hers.

“No!” Eve said adamantly as she kissed Villanelle passionately, her fears slipping away.

“Jesus..Eve…baby” Villanelle gasped as Eve kissed her neck and ran her hands over her breasts, her fingers sweetly exploring and running over her nipples.
Reaching behind her, Villanelle pulled back the covers and managed to manoeuvre Eve under them before slipping in beside her.

“Look at how beautiful you are my little doll!” She said adoringly as she propped herself up on her elbow and traced her finger over Eve’s torso. “You have such a beautiful body baby. You’re perfect!”

Eve smiled shyly then moaned as Villanelle closed her mouth around her nipple.

“Oh god!” she gasped but this only spurred Villanelle on more and she lavished her breasts with an assault of gentle and not so gentle kisses that had Eve’s hands clawing at the bed sheets beneath them. It was like a forest fire was ripping through her insides. She’d never felt anything like it. The most unbearable sensation of desperate want and need was coiling inside her and when Villanelle placed her hand directly over her panty covered centre her hips jerked.

“Please” she whispered and Villanelle ran her tongue along her collarbone ‘I know baby, you’re so ready. I’ll take care of you!”
Eve heard a ripping sound and vaguely saw white lace fabric being tossed and then there were fingers running lightly over her clit and she almost saw stars.

“Oh Eve, you’re so wet for me baby!” Villanelle could feel her trembling and looked down at her with a look of complete and utter worship in her eyes “Are you okay?”

As Eve looked up at Villanelle’s positively angelic face in that moment and halo of honey blonde silk cascading around her, she was overcome by her young lover’s concern and attentiveness.

“I’m okay, just stay with me sweetheart!” she said almost pleadingly and Villanelle nodded. “I will. I promise!” Villanelle turned them so they were lying on their side, pressed against each other much like they had been moments earlier and she slid two fingers inside of Eve.

“Oh…..Oksana….” Eve moaned as she instinctively began moving her hips against Villanelle’s hand.

“Yes….there’s my sexy girl, I know baby…it’s so good. You feel so good my beautiful Eve”

Villanelle could feel herself begin to positively drip. She’d dreamt of this moment for so long, but her most vivid fantasies could never have prepared her for the silky softness of Eve under her fingers, the exquisiteness of her undulating at her touch, her porcelain skin flushed with pleasure, Her thick black eyelashes fanned so beautifully across her blushing cheeks as her eyes closed, her beautiful lips parted and magnificent hair a dishevelled mass of ebony on the pillow.
She kissed Eve hard, her tongue demanding entrance and swallowed Eve’s scream as she found her g spot and began circling her clit with her thumb as he fingers fucked her long and deep.

Eve was a quivering incoherent mess when the kiss broke and she clutched desperately at Villanelle. “Oksana….I’m going to…..I……”

Villanelle pulled Eve flush against her, holding her tightly. “Good girl, let it all go…come for me baby!”

Eve’s breath hitched in her throat, she felt faint all of a sudden and then her whole body was spasming uncontrollably as pleasure ripped through her like a lightning bolt, paralysing her and there was only white light and Villanelle.

With any other partner Villanelle knew she would have drawn it out and began a relentless finger assault, put her mouth on their centre until they screamed for mercy, forced them into orgasm after orgasm just to feel the power and control and dominance she had over them.
But with Eve. Her beautiful, messy, raw, dark, complex, sexy, sweet Eve, who had given herself to her so trustingly and beautifully even though she was so afraid, all she wanted to do was protect her and look after her. And she realised she’d never felt so powerful. Or lucky.

She rode out Eve’s waves of pleasure with her, gradually softening her strokes and then carefully slipped her fingers out before putting them to her mouth and groaning.
“I knew you’d taste divine!”

Eve’s orgasm was so powerful that she was shaking from the aftershocks.

“Good girl!” Villanelle cooed in approval as she gathered Eve tightly in her arms and pulled the covers up around her. “I’ve got you baby, you’re safe. Just breathe!”

The tremors slowly left Eve’s body and Villanelle was so focused on Eve and making sure she was alright that she didn’t even register her shorts being tugged down until Eve’s thumb was circling her clit.

“Oh fuck….Eve baby..If you’re not ready you don’t have to….” Suddenly Eve slipped her fingers inside of Villanelle and her pelvis jerked involuntarily “Shit!” she cried out and Eve looked at her with eyes full of uncertainty “Is this right?”

Villanelle cupped Eve’s face with her hands “Is it right? Baby you don’t realise how magical you are, how turned on I am just from fucking you, you are my dream and…..oh fuck….yes baby, fuck me. Just like that”

Eve’s mouth was on her nipple sucking as she fucked her harder and faster.

“Eve…..baby I don’t think I can last much longer…..” Eve reached over and pinched Villanelle’s other nipple between her fingers roughly.

“EVE!” Villanelle screamed as she came with a force that made her see stars and stole her very breath.

Eve stayed in the moment with her, letting her come down from her orgasm and then moved to hold Villanelle’s quivering body in her arms. She ran her hand up and down her back and placed little kisses all over her face. She was certain she’d never seen anyone as beautiful as Villanelle was lying in her arms at that very moment. That she’d never experienced anything as incredible as what they’d just done.

“My beautiful girl!” Eve said proudly when Villanelle’s eyes fluttered open so prettily. Like butterflies spreading their wings for the first time. Villanelle simply smiled blissfully and snuggled even more tightly into Eve. Neither of them said anything for a little while, they just lay there content, sated and breathing.

“Oksana, thank you for being so wonderful with me tonight sweetheart. You were so patient and sweet and attentive to my anxiety, even though I know I didn’t make it easy for you. I think I was just scared. But everything was just…..I can’t even describe how incredible it was.”

Villanelle toyed with one of Eve’s curls “It’s okay baby. I know you were scared. But it was incredible. I knew it would be. And I think maybe since we have so many times where we want to kill each other we need to have times like this. We need sweet. You know, for healthy balance.”

Eve giggled and Villanelle laughed with her.

“God, here you are once more this poised stoic goddess and here I am the unglued hot mess!” Eve exclaimed self -deprecatingly and Villanelle kissed her nose.

My nickname when I was a child was Roxie.” She said softly and Eve’s eyes widened. “Roxie?”

“Yes!” Villanelle continued. “My mother wanted to call me Rosalie, but my father wanted me to be Oksana. When I was born my birth certificate was meant to read Rosalie Oksana Astankova, but my father was a cruel and stubborn man so he deliberately named me Oksana Rosalie Astankova. And when I was little I couldn’t say Oksana properly. And a combination of the two names just evolved and I became Roxie. I was very particular about who was allowed to call me that but It was the name I most identified with. Then some things happened and I guess in a lot of ways I left Roxie behind.” Villanelle’s eyes suddenly took on such a look of darkness and pain that Eve pressed a kiss to her forehead.

“I’ve got you My beautiful girl. Keep talking to me” Eve whispered adoringly, urging Villanelle on. It was so rare that she opened up like this.

“And when I went to Prison it wasn’t really a safe name to take with me. It was too cute.I was a pretty teenager going into a pretty intense test of human survival. So I became Oksana. Then when I was training as an assassin and got the chance to choose a name for myself I thought about Roxie. But I couldn’t really associate her, that part of me with killing. I think it was easier to just become someone else altogether. So I became Villanelle. You’re not the only one who gets messy Eve. You make me unglued too, I’ve just had a lot of training to not show when things get to me. And I get scared by what you do to me as well. Really scared. But it’s not all bad. I think I even kind of like it. Because this past week I’ve seen her again. I’ve seen Roxie.”

“Oh sweetheart!” Eve whispered as she pressed a gentle kiss to Villanelle's lips, touched beyond belief at her gesture. She’d seen how inadequate and inept Eve had felt for floundering so she’d levelled the playing field. And revealed something so intimate about herself in the process. Something that certainly hadn’t been anywhere in her files and she was sure very few people knew about the beautiful young woman in her arms.

“This probably sounds a little strange, but I think maybe I’ve seen her too!”

“It doesn’t sound strange at all!” Villanelle said as she let herself get lost in the warmth, acceptance and understanding that beamed back at her in Eve’s eyes.

“So not even Konstantin calls you Roxie?” Eve enquired.

“Never, only Villanelle!” Villanelle replied adamantly and Eve took a deep breath.

“Did Anna call you Roxie?” Villanelle shook her head. “She tried a couple of times. But I wouldn’t allow her. I didn’t have a lot of friends but I had one close friend and she heard him call me that once and tried it. I never even told her like I’m telling you”

“Why not baby?” Eve questioned her gently and Villanelle looked down.

“Because she wanted me to be someone else. Anytime I did something nice she’d want to know why I couldn’t be like that all the time. To make the picture of me she could live with she would have been happy to erase entire pieces of me and leave me full of holes. That’s not an easy realization to arrive at about the person you think you love when you’re only 15. But with you it’s different. Even when I’m making you so crazy you could strangle me, even after all that I’ve done. Even though I know parts of me scare you. You let me be me. You like me. All of me”

“Well despite some of your more infuriating characteristics you’re an extremely endearing human you know sweetheart! Would you let me see those gorgeous green eyes?”

Villanelle looked up at Eve with tear filled eyes but this time, unlike in the bar earlier she let them fall. She shyly wiped them away and went to hide her face again but Eve stopped her.

“My beautiful mixed-up complicated sweet girl. It’s okay to let yourself cry sometimes sweetheart. Come here” She held Villanelle with infinite tenderness and rocked her gently in her arms, her heart breaking for the pain the young woman had endured and had so honestly revealed to her. It explained so much about her fear of abandonment and that she wouldn’t be enough.

“Do you think maybe I could call you Roxie from time to time? Maybe see how you felt about it?”

Villanelle looked up at her with huge green trusting eyes and nodded.

Eve gave her a reassuring smile. “Okay sweetheart, why don’t you close your eyes. It’s been a long day!”

Villanelle allowed herself to relax in Eve’s arms and drift away in the sensation of Eve’s fingers running through her hair. After a little while Eve noticed Villanelle was sleeping.

“Goodnight beautiful Roxie” she said softly as she dropped a kiss on her head then whispered.

“I think maybe…..I might more than like you”

Chapter Text

“Who do you belong to baby?” Villanelle asked as she thrust into Eve long and deep with her strap on. Eve was almost out of her mind with pleasure and had lost count of how many times Villanelle had made her come.

“Answer me!” Villanelle commanded as she slapped the side of Eve’s thigh hard, making her moan at the heavenly blend of pleasure and pain. “Who do you belong to my beautiful, perfect little fuck doll?”

Villanelle picked up the specialty wax play candle that was lit beside the bed and let the wax drop in a V shape between Eve’s beautiful breasts causing her to wince but grow even wetter under Villanelle’s fingers. “Be a good girl and answer me or I won’t blow on it……though maybe you don’t want me do. You like it, it’s making you even wetter. Dirty girl”

Still she leant down and blew where the wax had hit Eve’s skin, soothing it with her tongue then twisting her right nipple hard causing Eve to scream.

“You Villanelle” Eve gasped and Villanelle grabbed her chin hard “What did you just say?” Her eyes were threatening and cold and the fear it evoked only aroused even more.

“You Mistress…..I belong to you” Eve said as tears fell from her eyes and she became a completely disintegrating mess as Villanelle began thrusting into her like a woman possessed.

“Good girl, that’s right. You’re mine. You’re mine always! Eve took a chance and slipped her fingers between them and found Villanelle’s clit.

“Oh fuck” Villanelle cried as she continued to thrust into Eve. “You’re lucky that feels so good my precious naughty girl or I’d have to punish you”

As they both reached the bridge of a mind blowing climax Villanelle pressed her hand to Eve’s throat, applying pressure. “Oh god…..” Eve cried as she felt the heady light headedness combined with mind blowing pleasure and came first, Her body shaking uncontrollably and Villanelle was barely a moment behind her.

“Fuck Eve….I’m coming!” The force of Villanelle’s orgasm caused her to grip Eve’s throat. Eve willed herself to stay calm once the seemingly endless tremors of her orgasm faded and she was assaulted with traumatic flashbacks of the attacker who had tried to attack her but she found herself becoming more and more upset and panicked “Stoy! Stoy! Stoy! Please!” she pleaded, using their safe word Villanelle had taught her as she gripped at the wrist on her throat, the word that meant stop in Russian.

Villanelle was aghast and instantly released the hand on Eve’s throat. “It’s okay baby, please don’t get upset you did so well!” she praised Eve as she undid the strap on at lightening speed before tossing it off the bed and moving to cradle Eve in her arms with infinite tenderness. She rocked her gently and placed little kisses all over her face.

“I’ve got you, no one can hurt you, I’m sorry I frightened you, I’m so proud of you for using our word though. I stopped straight away.”

“Roxie?” Eve asked hesitantly, coming out of the world of fear and trauma she’d been trapped in to see no masked attacker. No Mistress Villainelle either though she could still see the heavy sultry makeup on her young lover’s face and feel her thigh high latex boots against her skin but her eyes. Her beautiful green eyes looking back at her with so much pride and understanding and reassurance. They belonged to her beautiful girl.

Villanelle’s face lit up “That’s right. Your Roxie. Just breathe baby and let me hold you”

“You always stop straight away. I can always trust you to stop!” Eve said as she snuggled into Villanelles arms.

“Of course baby. The way you give yourself to me is so beautiful. Such a perfect precious gift. You are the most precious thing to me Eve. I would never hurt you in a way you didn’t want me to. It’s called a safe word for a reason. So that I can keep you safe. I will always keep you safe!”

And Eve did feel very safe. It had been not quite a month since their first sexual encounter but they hadn’t wasted any time learning and exploring one another. Their insatiable lust want and need for each other had seen them spend nearly every night Villanelle wasn’t “On a job” ravaging each other all over Eve’s house. As though she sensed the darkness that had always been lurking inside Eve, Villanelle had nurtured a D/s and mild BDSM angle to their sex life that was building slowly and wasn’t always present. When it was it was only in the bedroom. Though when Eve came home to find a highly stylised Villanelle clad in a leather bondage style teddy with military style fringed shoulder pads, huge Victoria secret hair, more makeup than she had ever seen her wear, a matching military cap and the thigh high boots she had indeed known where things were going.

But as always, even when being “Harsh” even when striking her with a toy or implement or her hand. Even when speaking to her in a much harsher way than she normally did, there was the underlying total connection to Eve’s wellbeing. The terms of affection and endearment mixed with the more shocking words.

It wasn’t all one way though. They very much switched. Though Villanelle was certainly naturally the most dominant of the two they had some amazing sex where Eve had topped her and though it was less formal than when Eve did it simply because she was still learning, Villanelle was so turned on by it and encouraged it.

“Roxie, when we play a little in bed with me in control. Is it good for you? I mean you’re so good and experienced at it and I….you know….I wouldn’t want to let you down and….”

She was cut off by a gentle but passionate kiss from Villanelle. When the kiss broke Villanelle reached for the jar of cream next to the bed and began gently peeling at the wax on Eve’s chest. “Baby you’re perfect. I don’t want you to be like me. I want you to be you. I love your domme style. Because its you. It’s my Eve. It’s organic and…sincere. I know I sometimes have trouble letting go a little but it’s only because I’ve never done it with anyone else before you.”

Eve’s eyes widened “You haven’t”?

Villanelle shook her head. “Nope. Not as the bottom. I’ve only given myself to you that way”

Eve looked at her in utter wonder as Villanelle gently placed the soothing cream on the pink marks the wax left the same as she always did then gently placed some on the nipple she’d pinched roughly enough for it to still be swollen.

“Why?”

“Because you’re special Eve. I knew that the moment I first saw you in that bathroom. There has been nobody like you. There is nobody as special as you.”

Eve took the jar of cream Villanelle was fiddling with and took her face between her hands.

“I’m not so sure about that babe. I happen to think I have competition” she kissed her passionately then slid quickly down Villanelles body and positioning herself between her legs.

“Fuck Evie…..Baby……so good” Villanelle gasped as Eve’s mouth closed around her clit.

Eve felt her centre pulse with want, hearing Villanelle use the nickname she’d given her and often used in bed, the one she’d come to love.

And then there was no more talking.

 

Villanelle placed her hand on Eve’s shoulder gently shook her lover out of her light sleep before it became a heavier one. She wasn’t surprised Eve was sleepy. She knew she’d really pushed her that night. Then Eve had made her come twice and on the third time she’d dragged her with her, oversensitive and screaming but she’d come for the countless time that night never the less. She made Villanelle so proud “Eve..baby.Come with me, I’ve run us a bath”

Eve’s eyes fluttered open prettily and all disoriented “Oh I‘m sorry I fell asleep”. Eve attempted to get out of bed but was a little wobbly and smacked straight into Villanelle. “ooof you’re like a giant supermodel tonight” Eve said in a spacey tone before tilting her head up to look at her. In her epic boots she would have to be 6”3 “Why are you so high off the ground?”

Villanelle felt herself completely melt at the cuteness of Eve’s lack of filter and bewildered expression. She bent down and picked her up like she was made of china and Eve wrapped her arms and legs around her neck.

“I’ve got you. Adorable, perfect little doll!” she said affectionately as she kissed Eve’s forehead and carried her into the bathroom.
***************************************************************************

Eve knelt in front of Villanelle In the bathtub gently removing the many layers of makeup she wore with heavy duty cleanser and a cloth. “My beautiful girl” she began adoringly as she carefully peeled the extremely heavy false lashes off her eyelids. “As amazing as tonight was, would you like to tell me why I came home to find a 32 year old professional dominatrix in what feels like layers of albeit beautifully applied war paint, about 3 cans of hair spray and absolutely no traces of my gorgeous fresh faced 25 year old girlfriend with her luminous skin and little freckles and cute messy top knot.

“I followed a youtube tutorial” Villanelle replied honestly “And I still maintain I looked 35” Eve looked at her like she was delusional “With that gorgeous baby face of yours? In your dreams! 32 was pushing it!”

Villanelle looked down “I wanted to look older tonight. I know that the age difference between us sometimes makes you feel uncomfortable……and tomorrow.

“You go undercover as a 16 year old” Eve finished her sentence. “Yup” Villanelle said with more than a little uncertainty.

They’d been tracking a significant person in the Paedophile and Sex trafficking ring for months. Well before Villanelle came back to town. But for the past month she’d been heavily involved in surveillance missions. He owned a dance studio just outside of London. The perfect lair for unsuspecting teenagers. And two weeks ago when information was released that there would be open call auditions for a prestigious program for gifted and talented dancers they’d been sitting at MI6 when Villanelle had revealed she had a background in ballet, modern dance and gymnastics since she’s Russian so its practically in her blood and she’s kept up with recreational classes when she can since she left prison then joked maybe she should just go in there and try out so they at least had someone on the inside sussing things out.

Carolyn had thought it was absolutely brilliant and plans had been made immediately. When Villanelle hadn’t been completing her two “jobs” out of town for MI6 she’d been training and refining her technique, meeting with stylists. Plotting a plan of attack to Benjamin button almost 10 years. She’d agreed to it because the other mission she was going to be on would have taken her away from Eve for over 4 months. Eve also got the feeling that her loathing for Paedophiles had inspired her to take the gig. And Although Carolyn had told Eve she would be a vital part of the surveillance operation, she had been completely excluded from any of the aesthetic part of it. She hadn’t even seen Villanelle dance. She didn’t know what she was wearing to the audition tomorrow, what song she was doing. It was all a mystery. And then suddenly it clicked.

“Is that why you’ve kept me so in the dark? Why I haven’t seen you dance? Why we always come here and I haven’t been to your place even once? Because that’s where all the preparations for your role are happening? And the reason behind the dress ups tonight? Because you’re worried it will make me uncomfortable?”

Villanelle shrugged “I don’t want you to be turned off or feel creepy and then not want to have sex with me!”

“That will never happen. You just stood in front of me in nothing but thigh high latex boots and you’re like a penthouse centrefold. You are so incredibly sexy and desirable and beautiful. You’ll be playing a role tomorrow. And I’m sure parts of it may make me a little uncomfortable but it’s a role, a job. The same as all the other jobs you’ve had to transform for. The same as you transformed tonight. But what I’m trying to say is I want you. I crave intimacy, sex, passion, all the magical dirty sordid things we get up to with you just as you baby. Even though you’re a baby compared to me. As long as you’re my baby and I’m yours it’s okay. I’m kind of getting used to it”

And she was getting used to it. She didn’t know whether it was because the age difference seem to make Villanelle hang onto every word of the life experience she had but the younger woman didn’t. Or that Villanelle absolutely doted on her so she never felt being the older woman made her the “mummy” in “mummy issues.” Villanelle was forever opening doors for her, carrying her around, taking her coat off and putting it on Eve when she was cold at night. There was no defined caretaker in the relationship which had been what Eve feared. They just took care of each other.

Villanelle threw her arms around Eve’s neck and hugged her tightly. “What was that for?” Eve asked as she held Villanelle and her arms and Villanelle’s voice quivered just a little. “Nobody has ever wanted me just as me before. But you do. You don’t know how much it means to me”

“Oh sweetheart I’ll always want just you!” She gently pulled away and wiped the last of Villanelle’s makeup off. “There! There’s my beautiful girl!”

Villanelle beamed and pulled Eve into her lap. “We will go to my place very soon I promise you!”

“I’m sure Carolyn hasn’t given you an apartment remotely to your expensive tastes!” Eve joked and Villanelle shook her head “She didn’t need to give me an apartment. I have a house here. It was meant to be an investment in my future of sorts. But my Ooshka lives there at the moment. And so do I in the rare moments I’m not with you!”

“Your what?” Eve asked and Villanelle giggled “My Ooshka. Its short for Babushka which is Russian for grandmother. She was my mother’s ballet teacher and the mother to her that she never had. Then she was my teacher and a grandmother of sorts. The one close childhood friend I told you about, Dimitry is her grandson. He’s a professional dancer now. The two of them and by extension his husband are really the only family I have. She had a stroke a little while back so we take turns keeping an eye on her. She’s been living in my house for a while and I need a guardian for this mission since I will be a minor so it works. I introduced Dimitry to his husband Antony. He is of my….professional industry and has even worked with Carolyn.”

Eve as always was touched by Villanelle confiding in her. She’d learned quickly not to fly off the handle that she didn’t know things about the very complex young woman in front of her. Things she wasn’t as forthcoming with as partners normally were. She knew how hard it was for Villanelle to open up to her.

“But I’ve told her all about you and she can’t wait to meet you. She wants to have you over for dinner very soon. The past few weeks though while she helped me prepared has taken it out of her a little I worry. And there has been a lot of yelling and fighting in Russian, sometimes French. She’s a strict teacher. But with love.”

Eve laughed and Villanelle laughed with her. ‘Well yelling and fighting with love sounds about right for family to me! I would love to meet her sometime sweetheart when she’s feeling up to it. And let’s just get through this mission one day at a time. Everything will be okay.”

‘Yeah…of course” Villanelle smiled with a confidence she wasn’t feeling at that moment and turned Eve in her arms so her smaller lover’s back was pressed against her chest and leant back against the tub with her between her legs.

She fought the wave of painful memories she had tried so hard to bury. Memories she thought she was on top of now but had come instantly rushing back with this mission. This was her chance to make a difference for other defenceless kids. This was her chance to end a circle of monsters once and for all. She just prayed she had the strength to pull it off. Everyone was counting on her. Her beautiful perfect Eve was counting on her.

Villanelle buried her face in the haven of Eve’s curls and tried her very best to believe in the words she’d been told only moments earlier.

“Everything will be okay”

Chapter Text

Eve headed towards Carolyn’s office at MI6. When she had woken up that morning she had found a note from Villanelle that read. “You looked so peaceful sleeping that I did not want to wake you. I must get an early start this morning. See you at MI6 baby. Take a muffin for your breakfast. I only baked them yesterday afternoon. Miss you already baby.”

She found herself in awe of the amazing young woman she had found herself doing life with. Nico had been attentive. But he had also been so soft and bland. Villanelle was 10 times more attentive and incredibly soft with her sure. But she was also tough as nails, fiery, unpredictable, dangerous and dark. And sexy, sexy as all hell. It was as though Villanelle was exactly the balance she had always craved.

She knocked on the door.

“Come in” came Carolyn’s voice and as Eve entered she saw Carolyn speaking with an extremely elegant woman. She looked to be in her mid 60’s was about 5”7 and Impeccably styled with silver grey hair in a bun, a stunning pashmina and the most chic walking stick Eve had ever seen. She had big blue eyes and as she turned and smiled at Eve they twinkled and Eve knew she must have been gloriously beautiful in her youth.

“Ah you must be Eve!” said the woman in a thick Russian accent. “it is such a pleasure to finally meet the woman who brings my Oksana such happiness. Come my dear”

The older women opened her arms to Eve and Eve realised who she was. ‘Oh, you’re Ooshka!”

“That is right!” She said with such a warm smile that Eve found herself going into the older woman’s arms for a hug. And when she hugged Eve it was though she had known the older woman forever.

When the hug broke she held out her hand and said “I am Natalia Mikailov!” Eve shook the woman’s hand “Eve Polastri!”

Their introduction was interrupted by the phone ringing. Carolyn answered it and spoke briefly to the person on the other line then placed the phone back in its cradle.

“Villanelle will be here shortly!”

The door to Carolyn’s office opened and Villanelle walked in looking at her watch. “Ooshka I was thinking about the last part of my ballet solo. The turn sequence is risky, I have not done triple pirouettes regularly for a long time and…..”

When she looked up and saw Eve she stopped in her tracks and looked at her a little nervously. ‘Hi baby!”

Eve looked at her young lover in awe. She really did look 16. She was wearing a black leotard with pink ballet tights, a lovely soft lavender colour cross over cardigan with a matching lavender chiffon skirt and lavender suede adidas sneakers.
There was no trace of the contouring she had seen Villanelle do on her face to make herself look a little edgier for work. Instead just a round baby face with rosy cheeks, a simple pink stain on her beautiful lips. Her long lashes were beautifully fanned out with mascara making her appear doe eyed and the biggest change was her honey blonde hair which was now a gorgeous soft light chestnut brown colour and done in two braids wrapped around her head like a halo with wispy little pieces escaping around her forehead and the sides of her face. She looked positively angelic. And so exquisitely beautiful.

Eve had never felt more like a cradle robber in her life. But she remembered how nervous Villanelle had been about her seeing her in such a youthful state and knew she had a responsibility to not let her down.

And when she saw Villanelle look her up and down and bite her lower lip, giving her the tell tale appreciative once over, Eve just knew she was cooking up something dirty and it made it all the more easy to walk right up to her and kiss her gently on the lips.

“Look at you! My beautiful girl. You look stunning! And your hair!”

Villanelle chuckled a little nervously ‘It’s actually my natural colour. My Ooshka, Carolyn and the stylists all agreed when combined with the overall look it makes me look younger. But it’s only temporary”

“Well they’re right. I mean I saw the mug shot but I didn’t realise you were a natural brunette. It does amazing things to your beautiful green eyes. I think you look stunning either way!”

Carolyn looked on at the scene before her and even felt her cold heart thawing a little. She’d been very concerned while Eve and Villanelle had been adversaries. She’d never dreamed what a valuable team they could be so incredibly besotted with one another. Still. There was work to be done.

“Ahem’ she cleared her throat and Eve and Villanelle turned to look at her “Your student identification card Villanelle with the name you requested. You are now “Natalia Petrov. Nickname ‘Talia” 16 year old distance education student who lives with your grandmother you are named after. Your English father met your Russian mother on business in Russia but you have spent most of your life here. Are you confident on your back story”

‘Absolutely Ms Martens, Thank you!” Villanelle answered in a perfect English accent as she accepted the ID card

Carolyn looked impressed and Natalia put her arm around Villanelle and hugged her ‘Using my name Malen’kiy? I am touched”

“Malen’kiy?” Eve said softly to Carolyn. “Little One in Russian” Carolyn replied and Eve nodded.

“Now I don’t want you to worry Roxie. You have unparalleled instincts. If you’re worried about the triple pirouette, you know you are better off landing a clean technically sound double instead but you feel the music like nobody else I have ever known and they will see that. I’m so proud of you my darling. Of what you are doing!” She gave Villanelle a big hug and Carolyn looked at the clock.

‘Well then Villanelle you best be off! Your driver has all your equipment in the car and you’ll be fitted with your mikes en route. Good luck”

‘Thank you Carolyn!” Villanelle said politely as she picked her coat off a nearby chair and Eve helped her into it. “Can I walk you out?’ Eve asked softly and Villanelle’s face lit up ‘Of course!”

The two women left Carolyn’s office together and when Villanelle closed the door behind her Eve took her hand and kissed it. “You’re going to be amazing sweetheart. I have faith in you. Just get in there, get whatever information you can and come back to me okay?”

Eve couldn’t put her finger on it but there was something so incredibly vulnerable about Villanelle in that moment. It wasn’t just how young she looked. There was something else. She seemed almost frightened.

Villanelle willed herself to stay strong. How she wanted to collapse in Eve’s arms and tell her of the pandora’s box of secrets and pain she was potentially lifting the lid on. That one throw away comment in the office meant as a joke had set her on this path and now she didn’t know how to take it back because there was too much at stake and too many people counting on her. Because the only way for her to tap out was to reveal things about herself that people could never know. That Eve could never know. Her beautiful perfect precious Eve. Why on earth would she want her if she knew the truth.

“Okay baby. I will. I promise!” Villanelle said as she threw her arms around Eve and hugged her tightly.

Eve gently kissed her neck and in a very serious tone said “Oksana if there was something wrong you would tell me wouldn’t you?”

Villanelle bit her lip and steeled herself as she pulled away. “Of course I would. But I’m fine. Better than fine. I’m about to go show all those little amateurs what owning the stage looks like”

Eve would normally call her an incorrigible little shit but there was something in Villanelle’s delivery that wasn’t quite as arrogant or even confident as it usually was.

“See you soon Eve” Villanelle said as she gently kissed Eve’s forehead and then turned and walked away. Eve waited until Villanelle was out of view and went to go back into Carolyn’s office but she couldn’t. There was something that compelled her to go after Villanelle and before she knew it, Eve was running down the corridor.

She rushed out of the building just in time to see Villanelle about to get into a car “Villanelle!” she cried out and Villanelle turned to look over her shoulder.

Eve didn’t know what it was but in her gut she knew it had to be now. It just had to be.

‘I love you!” She yelled.

Villanelle slammed the car door and ran to where she stood. “Did you just say what I….”

“I love you Roxie!” Eve cut her off and cupped Villanelle’s face adoringly “My beautiful girl. I love you!” Eve’s eyes filled with the beginnings of tears and Villanelle instantly kissed her eyelids “Oh Eve, I love you too!” She picked Eve up and wrapped the smaller woman around her. “I love you so much baby!” Villanelle squeezed her tightly then pulled back to look at Eve ‘Why are you telling me this now?” she asked and Eve shrugged “I don’t know. My gut just told me you might need to hear it!”

Villanelle kissed Eve passionately and when the kiss broke she pressed her forehead against Eve’s “You don’t understand how much this means to me baby. I’m so sorry that I have to go. But I will be back with you very soon okay?”

“Okay!” Eve said as she pressed a final kiss to Villanelle’s nose and reluctantly slid out of her arms.

Villanelle turned and ran to the car but turned back to Eve to give her a huge smile, then disappeared inside.

“Drive please!’ Villanelle said as she did up her seatbelt and felt her eyes fill with tears. She was loved. For the first time in her life someone she was in love with loved her in return. And not just anyone. Her beautiful perfect Eve. Eve loved her. She would be strong for her. She could do this.

“I’ll make you proud baby!” Villanelle vowed.

***********************************************************************

 

“Extraordinary!” Carolyn said in surprise after Villanelle had made it through 3 call backs and finished her ballet solo. “She’s absolutely brilliant!”

Eve sat staring in stunned admiration at the huge screen in MI6 that the strategically placed cameras in the dance studio fed back to. What she had just witnessed was glorious. Villanelle dancing was like poetry in motion.

Natalia wasn’t remotely surprised. “Of course she is. She’s even better than her mother was. She could have gone all the way if she didn’t get mixed up with that idiot French teacher and land herself in prison. But then sometimes I think she’s too free a spirit for the discipline and routine of the professional dance world. If you think she’s good at ballet fingers crossed she makes it to the next round for contemporary where she gets to dance with more abandon and be free. Then you will truly witness magic.”
In the studio Villanelle sat in a corner undoing her ballet shoes when she was approached by their target himself. Studio director Lachlan Milton.

“Miss Petrov?” he said as he looked down at Villanelle and extended his hand to help her up which she took.

“I just wanted you to know that you have been shortlisted in the final 6 applicants.”

Villanelle’s face lit up “Oh my gosh? Me? I can’t believe it. Thank you so much Mr Milton Sir” she gushed and Lachlan looked her up and down appreciatively. Long legs, tiny waist, gently curved hips and more ample then usual cleavage peaking over the top of her leotard. She had a little more weight on her than most classical dancers but her specialty was listed as contemporary anyway and that face! She was an absolutely stunningly beautiful child. In fact she was absolutely captivating. He wasn’t sure he’d ever encountered one quite like her.

“You’re very welcome Miss Petrov” he said warmly and Villanelle looked up at him shyly “You can call me Talia….I mean if you want to” he smiled at her and she blushed and looked away.

“Adorable!” Lachlan thought to himself.

“I’d like that very much Talia. But only if you call me Lachlan!” He reached out and brushed a wayward tendril of hair from her forehead. “Okay, Lachlan!”

Lachlan leant in and whispered “Don’t worry too much about the panel when you get back in there little princess. I’ll let you in on a little secret. I’m the boss, and you’re my favourite!”

Villanelle beamed at him as he winked at her and walked away. When he was out of sight her stomach churned. ‘Yuck” she spat in disgust and turned as though shew was looking out the window so she could speak into the mike on the inside of her dance bra.

“Did you guys hear that? I’ve got him on the hook!”

Villanelles voice rang through the speakers in Carolyn’s office and Eve got on the mike ‘You sure do you. I had no idea you were such a beautiful dancer!”

‘I still have my secrets Eve Polastri!” They both chuckled and Carolyn hopped on the mike ‘Really Villanelle you’re an exceptionally and diversely talented agent. You’ve done us proud today. Now do what you need to do to get over the line and go blow their socks off!”

“Yes boss!” Villanelle joked and then they heard the sound of her mike going silent.

“Argh!” Can you believe that creep. Looking at her like that! Touching her like that. I mean he’s old enough to be her father even with her being 25 but 16! It’s disgusting. He’s an animal.” Eve said emphatically and Natalia agreed. “That he is. But sadly, such monsters walk among us!” There was something in the older woman’s eyes that struck Carolyn and she made a mental note to look into it further.

“Regardless this changes everything ladies. We were just hoping she’d make it through a few rounds to do some reconnaissance. With her being all but accepted and having her on the inside, this could be our chance to really bring down this pack of paedophiles and teen sex trafficking ring once and for all.”

“You’re right Carolyn. This could be the break we were looking for.” Eve agreed.

“They are beginning the contemporary auditions!” Natalia said gesturing to the screen and all 3 women took their seats watching the screen avidly.

 

********************************************************************

Carolyn, Eve and Natalia had sat through 5 auditions and they’d all looked relatively impressive to Eve, though Carolyn who was a regular patron of the arts said only 4 of them stood out to her and Natalia was even more selective, saying only the second girl caught her attention.

“Where is Roxie?” Eve whispered worriedly to Natalia and she patted Eve’s hand “Don’t worry my dear. She was last to perform ballet, I’m sure she’s up next. You should always save the best for last no?”

They watched as the other members of the panel stood and left the room. Only Lachlan Milton remained.

“Wait a minute what’s happening?’ Eve asked as Villanelle entered the room timidly and in character as Talia. She was wearing an innocent looking little white babydoll sundress that looked a size too big and her braids were down now and tied with little white ribbons. She looked even younger than before.

Carolyn sat back in her chair. “He’s grooming her. He doesn’t want witnesses around!”

“Son of a bitch!” Eve exclaimed in disgust and reached over to turn the sound up so they could hear the conversation.

“Excuse me Mr Milton…”

“Lachlan…..” he corrected her and she nodded “Of course, Lachlan. My apologies. I was just wondering If you’d changed your mind about my call back for contemporary. I thought it was my turn next but everyone is leaving” Villanelle said nervously and Lachlan smiled warmly at her from the table.

‘Not at all my darling. You just seemed a little nervous outside and I wanted to give you the best chance of success. I thought it might be easier if it was just you and me. Without a row of scary strangers looking at you!”
“Oh…that’s very kind and thoughtful of you. Thank you!” Villanelle said as she wrung her hands and smiled sweetly at Lachlan.

“What have you prepared for me?” He asked, intrigued and Villanelle looked down ‘It’s a piece personal to me. I think it’s pretty self explanatory. Or at least I hope it is”

“Well I can’t wait to see it. Would you take your position please?”

Villanelle nodded and moved to the centre of the room. Lachlan pressed play and Eve watched the screen enraptured as the music completely took over Villanelle and she became utterly captivating. It was like they were one. She moved so exquisitely and with such raw sincerity to the simple but beautiful lyrics that Eve couldn’t take her eyes off the young woman.

So farewell my love
Cause I was wrong I guess
Farewell so long
'Cause I was wrong I confess

I miss the way you
I miss the way you sing with me
I miss the way you
I miss the way you sing with me

Then suddenly Villanelle stopped and stripped out of her little sunfrock effortlessly and held it up like it was poison, utterly heartbroken and dropped it to the ground, revealing simple white boy leg shorts and a plain white cotton crop top that was so innocent looking yet somehow barely contained her breasts.

I never asked you for
A sailboat in the yard
Or that fancy dress to wear
Or a ceiling made of stars
And all I got was just this
Broken heart from you

“Well played Villanelle!’ Carolyn said aloud in appreciation. Look at him! She’s found a very chaste and in character way to dangle the carrot and he’s practically salivating.”

“Pig!” Natalia spat and Eve felt increasingly uncomfortable as she watched Lachlan regarding Villanelle with growing lust as she finished her stunning solo.

He began clapping and stood up from his chair “Bravo darling. That was exquisite really.” He rounded the table and Villanelle went to reach for her dress but Lachlan picked it up.

“Did some idiot boy break your heart my darling?” he asked and Villanelle smiled sadly “Something like that !” Lachlan shook his head “Then he was a fool. I know beauty when I see it. I know talent when I see it. The it factor. And you little princess have it! I’m offering you a place in my program. If you will accept!”

Villanelle let out a little squeal “Oh my goodness really? Lachlan thank you so much I promise I’ll work so hard for you!”

Lachlan beamed at her “I know you will. How do you feel?”

Villanelle wrapped her arms around herself self consciously “I feel over the moon….and a little bit naked” she said and Lachlan smiled at her softly as he walked closer to Villanelle, holding her dress. At 6”4 he was significantly taller than her.

“You are the sweetest little thing!” He said affectionately and cupped her face ‘And so very, very beautiful.” Villanelle looked down to avoid the scrutiny of his gaze but he tipped her face back up to his. “May I?” he asked, holding up her dress and Villanelle moved her arms from around her waist and raised them in the air, looking up at Lachlan innocently.

Lachlan ever so slowly put Villanelle’s dress back over her arms and deliberately let his hands skim the sides of her body as he smoothed it back down. “There we go princess”

“Thank you Lachlan so much for everything” Villanelle said as she took his hand and gave it a little squeeze. “I’ll see you tomorrow!”

Lachlan felt electricity jolt through his body at her touch and was awestruck even as she turned and walked away “Looking forward to it princess”

Eve, Natalia and Carolyn watched as Villanelle disappeared from the room and almost instantly Lachlan pulled out a phone.

“Hey it’s me. Yes I’ve got 5 girls. They all fit the profile. A very pretty in-take this time around. Strong little dancers too…..No I thought there might be a 6th one but she’s special. No not special, exceptional. Just turned 16, legs for days. The most perfect lush tits you’ve ever seen and the face of an angel. Cute as a button too and an absolutely stunning performer. She’d make it into any elite performance program. I can’t believe she fell into my lap. But now that she has, she’s off the table.”

“Wait off the table?” Eve said in confusion and Carolyn nodded “He wants her for himself!”

“Okay, talk soon. I’ll keep you updated on how things are going!” He hung up the phone and Eve sat absolutely seething.

Natalia watched her reaction carefully then softly said “You love her very much don’t you?”

Eve turned to the older woman and her expression softened. ‘I do. I tried so hard not to. Believe me I never thought we would end up here. But here we are!”

Natalia smiled warmly “Some things are simply meant to be my dear. Today has been hard on you I can tell. You should go to her. The two of you should be together tonight.”

Carolyn watched the exchange before her with interest and when Eve looked at her hopefully she shrugged. ‘It’s fine with me Eve. It’s been a long day!”

“Okay well I’ll get going!” Eve said as she leant over and hugged Natalia “It was so lovely to meet you!” Natalia squeezed her tight. “The pleasure was all mine my dear. So wonderful to meet the woman who has captured my Oksana’s heart so. You take good care of her and tell her I will see her at home!”

‘Okay I will. Goodbye ladies!” Eve said as she left and Carolyn looked at Natalia knowingly. ‘Villanelle’s got some secrets hasn’t she. This mission is close to home for her.”

Natalia’s eyes twinkled “You’re a very astute woman Carolyn Martens. I think I quite like you!”

“And I you!” Carolyn replied sincerely. ‘What do you think I should do to support Villanelle?”

Natalia took a deep breath. ‘Perhaps its time to bring Konstantin in. He’s very good at handling Oksana at her most unpredictable, at keeping her safe and it might take some of the pressure off Eve and off what is a relatively new relationship between herself and my granddaughter. I really hope the two of them make it though. Their courtship may have been unconventional…”

“To say the least!” Carolyn interjected dryly.

“But I believe they have something special. Enough to melt even my cold old heart!” Natalia mused and Carolyn chuckled. “As much as I loathe to admit it, perhaps I might be with you there. Would you like to get some dinner?”

“Thank you Carolyn. I would like that very much” Natalia replied warmly.

***************************************************************************

“Roxie I’m home!” Eve called out as she entered her house and tossed her keys in the bowl. She could hear soft music playing from the living room.

“Roxie where are…….” Eve stopped when she reached the living room and saw the floor littered with blankets and cushions. There were fairy lights lit everywhere. Plates with delicious snacks set out in a beautiful floor picnic with wine. And sitting in the centre of the floor was her beautiful girl looking so unbelievably pretty in a baby blue pair of sweat pants and hoodie. Gone was the over stylized dominatrix from the night before, as was the 16 year old from earlier that day. Instead it was just her Roxie. Fresh faced and gorgeous, her newly chestnut locks out of their braids sitting in heavenly waves that reached beneath her chest, sparkling green eyes and the biggest smile beaming back at her. She was nothing short of fucking glorious

“Hi baby. I missed you today!” Villanelle said sincerely and Eve walked quickly to where she sat, dropped to her knees and threw her arms around her young lover. “I missed you sweetheart. You were absolutely exquisite. I had no idea what an incredible dancer you were!”

She pulled back to take Villanelle’s face in between her hands “I am so proud of you!”

She gently kissed Villanelle and Villanelle willed herself to hold it together. She’d had so many painful memories dragged up that day she felt as though she was positively reeling. And the goodness, the absolute perfection of Eve in her arms at that moment, so proud of her, so devoted to her was almost her undoing.

“It makes me so happy to know that I’ve made you proud of me darling Eve” She said sincerely before kissing Eve passionately. When the kiss broke Eve gestured to their low key but incredibly romantic surroundings.

“Look at this beautiful picnic. What is all this?” She asked and Villanelle shrugged The most beautiful, sexiest, smartest most perfect woman I have ever known told me she loved me today, and then I had to go. So I wanted to do something special!”

Eve melted. She’d never felt so validated and wanted and secure as she felt with Villanelle.

“I wanted to take you out properly on a very magical romantic date, pull out all the stops. But It was a very long day. I feel I am quite tired and I don’t do things unless I do them properly. You deserve nothing but the best. But I would very much like to do that with you on the weekend. And I hope for now this is okay?” Villanelle looked so unsure that Eve absolutely melted.

“Roxie!” She said as she placed a gentle kiss on Villanelle’s nose “My beautiful sweet girl. This is perfect!”

“It is?” Villanelle asked in delighted and Eve nodded “Yes sweetheart I promise!”

“Okay good cause I put it together very quickly but I still managed to get all your favourites!” Villanelle said excitedly and Eve laughed. She was so very lovely with her guard down.

Villanelle poured them both a glass of champagned and handed one to Eve. “Ready to snuggle in for the night?” she asked and Eve kissed her nose “Sounds perfect!”

 

**********************************************************************

Villanelle was nestled in between Eve’s legs with her back to her chest, their cheeks pressed together and it felt so good to Eve but she couldn’t help but be concerned about the young woman in her arms. Something just wasn’t right.

“Is there even the slightest chance you’ll tell me what’s going on with you Roxie? I know something isn’t right. If you’re feeling unsafe in this mission or you’re not okay you need to tell me so we can talk to Carolyn and do something about it. I know this is much different to what you’re used to doing.”

Villanelle sighed as she turned to face Eve and threaded their fingers together. “I guess today really just made me think about what happened with Anna. That’s what my contemporary piece was about. She always wanted me to be different. I just wanted her to love me. I know I pursued her. I know I instigated it. But she was the adult. She was in the position of power. She should have known better. Being a teenager again is so surreal. I wanted to go back and tell 16 year old me that this isn’t it for her. That one day this incredibly annoying and unbelievably gorgeous tiny Asian woman with the most glorious hair she’s ever seen is going to walk into a bathroom and change her whole life. And that they’d hurt each other and taunt each other and just about kill each other getting there but they would love each other. She would be loved. Loved exactly as she was by someone smart, sexy, dark, funny, kind and so beautiful. And such an utterly atrocious cook!”

Eve slapped Villanelle’s shoulder “Hey!” and they both laughed but her heart absolutely broke for her traumatised love and all she’d suffered.

“Roxie I completely understand why this mission would be a total head spin for you given how close to home it is baby. I’m so sorry for what you went through. You’re absolutely right, Anna should have stopped it. You were the vulnerable one. I can’t take away the pain you went through but I can tell you that you are loved. I love you so much my darling.”

“And I you, Cherie!” Villanelle said as she wrapped her arms around Eve’s neck and hugged her tightly.

How she wished she could tell Eve everything she was thinking and feeling. All the most disgusting secrets she kept inside of her. But she couldn’t. Because they were more unlovable than anything she could imagine. And if Eve ever found out.

She would hate her.

Chapter Text

Eve woke up in Villanelle’s trendy but very homey Notting Hill home and reached out beside her “Roxie….baby” she murmured but found the bed empty. Eve sat up and looked around the bedroom. Villanelle had asked her to stay there the previous evening while she was “taking care” of someone for Carolyn in Paris and had promised when she got home in the early hours of the morning they could cuddle up. And yet there was a distinct absence of her beautiful girl or her cuddles.

Getting up and putting on a robe she went downstairs in search of her. “ Good morning! She’s in the studio my dear. She’s been in there for almost 2 hours!” Natalia said as soon as Eve reached the bottom of the stairs. “Oh good morning Natalia. Thank you!” Eve said and continued down the next set of stairs to the basement studio Villanelle had converted so that Natalia could still take on private dance tuition clients when she felt up to it.

When Eve opened the door she was greeted by the sight of Villanelle spinning in the air so very gracefully on a lyra hoop. Her flips and tricks were absolutely effortless. And it’s not that Eve wasn’t proud, she was so very proud of her beautiful girl. Villanelle had been on the inside at the dance company for almost two weeks now and had made amazing headway but she was so focused on the mission that at times Eve felt as though there was an entire wall between them.

Carolyn had accused her of being over sentimental and said Villanelle was doing an absolutely marvellous job. And then she’d felt just awful because Villanelle really was doing amazing and the last thing she wanted to do was take away from that.

Sometimes she just got the feeling like Villanelle slipped away from her in moments. Far, far away. And Eve had no idea where she went or why it was happening. She loved Natalia. Natalia was warm, kind and loving and had embraced her like family yet sometimes it felt she was hiding things. Sometimes it felt like she was in cahoots with Carolyn over something. But Eve didn’t know what.

“Good morning darling Eve!” Villanelle said with a delighted smile as she gracefully lowered herself to the ground and went straight to Eve and kissed her.

“You said we’d cuddle, I reached out for you and you weren’t there!” Eve whined just a little and Villanelle shrugged “I don’t want you to cuddle with me right now!” She said darkly and Eve looked confused as Villanelle turned up the volume on the music and closed the studio door behind her “You don’t?”

Villanelle pushed Eve against the wall “No! I want you to sit on my face and watch yourself in the mirror while I fuck you till your legs shake.”

“Oksana please we need to…” But she was cut off by Villanelle kissing her and pushing up her nightgown. She heard the faint rip of her panties being torn from her and then Villanelle was lifting her up and before Eve knew what had happened Villanelle had hoisted her up to sit on her shoulders with her centre directly at mouth level.

‘Hold onto the silks!” Villanelle commanded as she pushed Eve’s body against the wall and plunged her tongue inside her.

“Oh fuck!” Eve cried and desperately reached for the red circus silks above her, clinging on for dear life as Villanelles tongue darted in and out of her without mercy.
Her eyes fluttered open in euphoric pleasured delirium and she caught sight of herself in the studio mirror opposite her. She watched Villanelles toned shoulder muscles rippling, her hands clutching at her creamy ivory thighs that were now trembling. It was the single most erotic thing she had ever done.

“Mmmmm so good my beautiful little doll!” Villanelle moaned against her centre and began to flick at Eve’s clit with her tongue and then suck it as though her very last breath depended on it. Her whole body began to shake “Roxie…..baby……….please…….I’m going to……..”and then suddenly one of Villanelle’s hands left her thighs and pressed hard against the centre of her chest, pinning her against the wall as she came screaming and making sure there was no danger of her slipping as she rode out wave after wave of a seemingly endless orgasm.

When Eve’s orgasm finished Villanelle carefully lowered her as though she war made of china until she was wrapped around her mid section and steadied her on the ballet barre “Mon petite amour I’ve got you” she assured her and Eve slipped her fingers into Villanelle’s dance shorts as she kissed her neck, finding her young lover absolutely soaking for her.

“You’re so wet for me sweet girl” Eve murmured as she slipped two fingers inside her young lover and Villanelle began rocking against her hands.

“Oh god…….please Eve….I need to come so badly right now.”

“I know baby……you’re so hot…I can feel you… Are you my good girl?” Eve demanded and Villanelle nodded wordlessly, lost in pleasure.

“Are you mine?” She asked as her thumb circled her young lover’s clit. “Yes….” Villanelle moaned as Eve fucked her harder and faster.

“Who do you belong to?” Eve demanded and Villanelle gasped “You Eve, I belong to you!”

“Good girl! That’s right…you are my good girl aren’t you. You’re mine!”

Villanelle cried out and came hard. Quivering and undulating underneath Eve’s touch.

“I’ve got you pretty baby” Eve said adoringly as she wrapped Villanelle up in her arms with painstaking gentleness and tenderness. ‘My beautiful sweet girl!” this was what they did in the aftermath whenever one topped the other. They were always extra careful, extra delicate and doting with one another to ease out of the scene or the moment.

“I’ve been trying to keep a lot of balls up in the air. But I should have been cuddling you when you woke up like I said I would. Sorry baby!” Villanelle said softly.

Eve shook her head “It’s okay sweetheart. You have an awful lot on your plate. I didn’t mean to whine!”
Villanelle shrugged ‘I kind of like it. It’s cute!’ She said with a cheeky grin and they both chuckled.

‘Come on little sex goddess!” Villanelle drawled in her thick Russian accent as she carried Eve to the small bathroom attached to the studio. Shower, breakfast, Work!”

 

Villanelle sat glaring at Konstantin from across the table. ‘You weren’t invited!”

“Natalia invited me actually!” Konstantin corrected her and looked at Eve ‘So Eve, I understand that things are much changed between you and Villanelle since I saw you last!”

Eve didn’t get the chance to answer as Natalia tried to distract Villanelle “Roxie darling please eat up, you’ve already lost weight since you started this program. You’re not meant to have the emaciated ballerina physique!”

“Tell that to the fascists telling me I’m fat 5 times a day!” Villanelle said sulkily as she ate a banana and Eve looked at her girlfriend who had indeed lost weight and the navy blue power suit that was even looser on her than it had been only a week ago.

“You’re not fat sweetheart you’re perfect, please eat some bacon!” Eve asked her gently and Villanelle shrugged “I like my body I just don’t like him being in my house when he ran away like a little bitch boy when the twelve were after me!”

“I did not run away Villanelle, I had to make sure Irina was safe. If you recall I asked you to come with me but no. You always go off half cocked and have to do things your way!”

Eve bit her lip to stop from smiling at Villanelle’s pouty expression. She looked so cute.

“Is this a new table? Its lovely!” He asked in an effort to break the tension and Villanelle smiled “Yes it is, I bought it after I found you and babushka having sex on the last one and was totally traumatised. “I’m rather attached to this one so if you could refrain from defiling it or her while you’re here!”

“OKSANA BEHAVE!” Natalia chided and Villanelle made a dramatic and very child like face of mock contrition “Oooookkkaaaaay”

“Tell them I don’t do anything half cocked baby, that I only ever do things with a big thick hard full cock! Especially when I put it in your pretty little pussy” Villanelle whispered to Eve while Konstantin complemented Natalia on the eggs and Eve almost spat coffee out her nose as she snorted and giggled then went red.

“They’re lovely together aren’t they?” Natalia mused aloud to Konstantin about Villanelle and Eve. “Were we ever that young my friend?” she asked and he laughed “No!”

“Ew…Gross. We have to go!” Villanelle said as she poured coffee into hers and Eve’s keep cups.
“Goodbye Ooshka.I love you. I will see you tonight” Villanelle said as she kissed Natalia goodbye “I love you too Malenk’iy. Even when you’re infuriating!” She teased.

“Thank you for breakfast Natalia!” Eve said as she kissed Natalia goodbye. “You’re most welcome my darling.”

“I am watching you!” Villanelle said to Konstantin before putting a protective arm around Eve and leaving with her.

“You are such an incorrigible little shit!” Eve chided as Villanelle opened the car door for her and Villanelle beamed at Eve’s still blushing cheeks “Thank you baby!” and Eve laughed. “I wasn’t complimenting you quit looking so smug! Oh wait I left that file inside that I need”

“Hurry up baby I will start the car!” Villanelle said as she kissed her forever distracted lover’s forehead.

“Two minutes!” Eve called as she ran back inside the house.

Spying the files on the small table in the hallway she grabbed them then stopped as she overheard Konstantin and Natalia talking.

“Natalia you and Carolyn are playing with fire. Does Carolyn even know how delicate a situation this is, how fragile a balance for Villanelle?”

‘I think she suspects but I haven’t really told her anything. It’s not my story to tell!” Natalia replied.

“But It’s not one Villanelle should be reliving either. This could become catastrophic. And what about her life with Eve? I have never seen our girl so happy as she is with that Polastri woman. Finally after all the months of them cat and mouse circling each other and even after Eve stabbed her they have found a way to each other. It isn’t fair for Eve to have to partner Villanelle so closely through this mission!”

‘But Konstantin that is why Carolyn has brought you in. For support!”

“Will you even consider for a moment that this could destroy Villanelle?” He raised his voice in frustration and Natalia raised hers in retaliation. “Will you even consider that it might help her heal and move forward?”

The sound of the horn beeping ripped through the house and Natalia and Konstantin stopped talking. Eve flew out of the house and closed the door behind her. Catastrophic? Delicate? Fragile? Why? Why was it so fragile for Villanelle. What didn’t Carolyn know? What was going on? She walked to the car in a daze and got in.

“Oh there you are baby. Honestly I would rather be in prison again than listen to most of this Ariana Grande shit all those stupid kids in my class are obsessed with but I do like this song of hers about going shopping and buying lots of beautiful expensive things” Villanelle mused and as Eve looked at her beautiful young lover moving sassily in the drivers seat to “7 rings” she honestly looked like she didn’t have a care in the world. She was okay wasn’t she? Her beautiful precious girl was okay surely.

Villanelle suddenly became aware of Eve’s shell -shocked expression “Eve, baby what is wrong? Oh god they weren’t having sex on the kitchen table again were they? I’ve had it less than a month”

Eve shook her head “Oh…..um……No sweetheart, they weren’t. Sorry, just a little distracted I guess!”

“Okay. Good” Villanelle said emphatically “Cause I want to break that one in with you!” She gave Eve a saucy wink and Eve cracked up laughing. “Just drive Roxie!”

Eve knew something wasn’t right. But if something was really and truly wrong surely they wouldn’t be this happy. She’d know.

Wouldn’t she?

******************************************************************
Eve’s heart swelled with pride as she watched Villanelle present what she’d learned so far about Lachlan Milton and the Paedophilia ring to herself, Carolyn, Jess, Hugo and Konstantin. Even Carolyn looked impressed.

Villanelle changed the slide on the screen to reveal the audition “head shots” of her and the 5 other girls. “Look at the 6 of us, each of us with very different aesthetics, ranging from 14-17 years old. Each of us with a lot of talent but something that makes us undesirable for other dance companies. For me and this girl…” Villanelle pointed to a pretty blonde ‘It’s that we are too curvy. We have hips and boobs and we are the fat girls of ballet and thus undesirable to any company with a strong classical base. For this little girl” Villanelle pointed to a petite red head.

 

“She is almost 17 and only 5”1. She will likely not grow very much taller and is a beautiful ballet dancer but well under the preferred height of 5”7 for the corps de ballet. Where as the willowy Italian girl is also stunning but at 5”11 she is difficult to partner. It’s hard to find male dancers who can partner her and look masculine and balance out jumps and leaps and Pas de deux work. The girl with the lovely curls has significant scarring across her back and shoulders due to a car accident when she was younger and the little Asian girl, absolutely brilliant tap dancer. But tap is a very obscure style. It’s hard to find a home in a company if this is your specialty. So he gets girls that are unlikely to be given a place in elite programs anywhere else.”

“What a predatory monster!” Jess exclaimed and Villanelle nodded “Exactly, predatory. In addition to this, the other 5 girls come from families of limited incomes and as far as Lachlan is concerned I live in a nice neighbourhood sure but I live with and help care for my stroke victim grandmother. He gives us all scholarships. It’s an offer that can’t be refused. And it also means that he can regularly invite prospective “Buyers” of the girls in and explain them as sponsors of the scholarships or investors. The girls are grateful, it doesn’t seem out of place when these men attend classes because they’re just checking in on their investment and when they tell the girls they’re glad the money is invested in their talented the girls feel special. And I’ve been in these classes. The men are good, they’re so casual about it. Always just dropping in for a lunch or to ask Lachlan to play golf.

“Good god it’s the perfect cover” Hugo said in horror.

“And then comes the knight in shining armour moment. Yesterday a teacher told tiny ballerina girl “If you were only a few inches taller you would be unstoppable.” Really went on about her lack of height. Tiny ballerina girl is weakened. 55 year old man just finishing up lunch with Lachlan in front of everyone calls out teacher. Says he won’t stand for such a beautiful and talented young woman being vilified like that and teacher should be ashamed of herself. Man approaches girl and says he couldn’t take his eyes off her and she’s like a perfect little doll just as she is. Tiny ballerina girls is so grateful. Talks to paedophile. He asks if she would like milkshake from café next door. Lachlan gives her gentle nudge and says friend is super dad and lonely since his daughters went off to college. Off tiny ballerina goes for milkshake. And thus the grooming begins. It’s like taking candy from baby. They don’t even alter the formula that much, and they keep us separate on different timetables of different dance styles so we can’t compare notes!”

“Then how come you know so much. Where do you fit in with all this” Hugo asked and Villanelle looked irritated “I know so much because It’s my job to monitor the target and know everything!”

“But you must admit you’re quite the star pupil. Milton has grown so fond of you in such a short period of time. All of his signature dick moves too like his infamous tantrums and explosions, the gaslighting he’s famous for with young women. None of it is present with you. He’s been on his best behaviour” Jess questioned further.

“Well it’s the honeymoon period” Villanelle dismissed and her phone beeped indicating a missed call.

“I’ve missed a call from Milton” She said as she flicked to voicemail and Carolyn connected the speaker to Villanelle’s burner phone. “Play it back!” she asked and Villanelle dialled “Talia’s” voice mail box.

“Hey Tali girl, it’s Lachie. I was just wondering if your grandma could do without you a little longer tonight. I was hoping you’d be able to stay back and workshop some choreography with me. I actually want to build a piece around you. Something completely new and original. I haven’t choreographed a piece for the company for years. I don’t know what it is about you Talia. You’re magical. You make me want to create again. I think you might be my muse. Anyway, I promise to feed you. Call me back when you can princess. I missed you in classes yesterday. Talk soon beautiful”

“You better call him back Tali girl! He misses his princess!” Hugo teased and Villanelle threw a memo pad at him, narrowly missing his head.

‘Alright that’s enough!” Carolyn said and turned to Villanelle ‘This is very good work Villanelle, really. You better go call Lachlan Milton and make arrangements for tonight. The closer he pulls you near, the closer you get to the inside! If he’s giving you dinner, try to get him to ply you with wine and get him drinking too. See if he reveals anything else.”

Eve sat listening to Carolyn in horror. “Can I talk to you please?” she asked and Carolyn nodded “My office!” she said quietly. Neither women spoke a word the entire time they walked but as soon as they got inside Eve let rip.

“Are you out of your mind? We’re pimping Villanelle out to this creep now? You want him to get her drunk and seduce her?”

Carolyn looked at Eve dubiously “Eve forgive me for stating the obvious but Villanelle isn’t some innocent fragile little flower here. She’s an incredibly gifted assassin and fairly capable of taking care of herself.”

“He’s in love with her. You know it and I know it!” Eve protested and Carolyn shook her head “No he’s infatuated with 16 year- old Talia Petrov, he’s not in love with Villanelle!”

“He’s in love with Roxie! I know her. I know her Carolyn. He’s not in love with Villanelle but he’s in love with Roxie. The sass, the sweetness, the sense of humour. The free spiritedness. All the things she doesn’t allow herself to show as Villanelle. She’s not used to doing this kind of work long term. She’s not used to having to go undercover. I’ve been watching her. She thinks she’s playing sweet and bubbly and down to earth and she is but though I’m sure even she wouldn’t realise, the girl she’s playing is the girl I see at home. So I know how intoxicating it can be and something isn’t right with her and I’m worried she’s in way over her head.”

‘Eve you and Villanelle are a remarkable team but given the personal nature of your relationship perhaps now we have Konstantin you ought to consider taking a step back from the “inside” of this investigation. Just for the sake of setting healthy boundaries in a relationship that obviously means a great deal to both of you. Take it from someone who has been there. Jealousy and insecurity and fear that comes from working so closely with your partner in something as sensitive as this can tear your home life apart.’

Eve looked at her incredulously “This isn’t about jealously! This is about everyone around me trying to convince me that Villanelle is okay in this and I know she’s not okay. Something is going on here. I feel like everyone around me knows more than they are letting on and I am worried about her. I feel like I’m the only one who is putting her wellbeing first and foremost!”

“Oh my apologies!” Konstantin said as he entered and saw he was interrupting.

“Oh no don’t leave on my account. Maybe you and Carolyn can organise for Villanelle to give Lachlan Milton a lap dance!” and with that she stormed out.

Konstantin raised an eyebrow and Carolyn sighed “Eve is too close to Villanelle. It’s causing a few complications.”

“Carolyn you’re not suggesting we…

“Break them up? Goodness no, but at this rate they’ll break each other before this mission is over. Honestly, is there something seriously wrong with Villanelle that could compromise this investigation?”

Konstantin sighed “Not the investigation. She would never let that happen.”

“Alright. Could it compromise her? Her wellbeing?” She questioned further and Konstantin nodded “I’m afraid so. Quite significantly!”

It was Carolyn’s turn to sigh “I believe Eve is right. I think he’s falling in love with her. But I think that may offer her more protection rather than less. So we keep a very close eye and if things become too unstable or unsafe we pull the plug?”

Konstantin shrugged “That is all we can do my friend. She won’t back down from this right now. I know she won’t”

*********************************************************

“I know Lachie my grandma wasn’t well I really missed you too! But I baked you your favourite cupcakes! Maybe we can have them tonight for dessert?” Eve stood in the doorway as Villanelle spoke to Lachlan as Talia in a perfect English accent and giggled at something he’d said.

“Okay. I’m really looking forward to it. I can hardly wait for class to start now. See you soon!” When Villanelle hung up she looked up in surprise to see Eve. “Eve hi!”

“I can’t wait for class to start now!” Eve said in a mock bimbo tone. “Why are you even still here? I’m surprised you’re not rushing to take Captain Creepy his special cupcakes!”

She saw the hurt on Villanelle’s face and felt like an absolute jerk but still she couldn’t stop herself. She was angry and fearful for the woman she loved, and not a damn person including the woman she loved was doing anything to help her figure out what was going on.

“Eve don’t be jealous baby, this is just work!” Villanelle reasoned and Eve threaded her hands through her hair in frustration. “Jealousy? This isn’t about jealousy. This is about the fact that I know something major is going on with you and….”

“Please Eve!“ Villanelle cut her off. “I’ve never been in a relationship before that meant as much to me as what I have with you baby. You need to know I’m faithful to you. Maybe we need to set out some boundaries so you wouldn’t be sitting at home worrying about Lachlan wanting to touch me or to kiss me. I don’t want to compromise the mission but I need you to know that I love and desire only you. I wouldn’t disrespect you” Villanelle pleaded and Eve saw red.

“Seriously Villanelle? I’m trying to talk to you about something that I can see eating at you and you’re asking for a hall pass to go fool around with a Paedophile?”

Villanelle looked hurt and confused “Don’t call me that. You don’t call me that when it’s just us. To you I am Oksana. I’m Roxie, I’m your Roxie, and I don’t know what this hall pass is, I don’t know all the English slang but I am not going to fool around with a paedophile!”

“Yeah? Well my Roxie wouldn’t be asking to set boundaries so she could get touched or kissed by Lachlan Milton! I need some fucking air” Eve spat as she stormed out of the room.

“Eve wait please!” Villanelle called after her but she was gone. Villanelle began to pace and before she knew what was happening her eyes were full of tears.

“Myshka this is no good for you” Konstantin said gently as he entered the room and stood in front of her.

“Shut up! You’re still uninvited!” Villanelle spat as tears fell but she still let Konstantin wrap his arms around her.

“Everything is such a mess Konstantin. I’ve upset Eve, I have so many memories coming back. I think maybe I’m in over my head!” she sobbed and Konstantin sighed. “Stubborn little miss you are. This won’t undo everything you lost. All that you suffered. And Katya wouldn’t have wanted this for you! You were her world. This won’t bring her back” When he said her name a sob ripped through Villanelle that stole her breath.

“Please don’t say her name” she sobbed. “This is hard enough….She would have been 16 now.” Konstantin held her tight and it was the embrace of a father figure enveloping his deeply traumatised little girl. “I know!”

“What am I going to do?” she asked helplessly and Konstantin kissed her forehead “It will be alright. Eve loves you very much. She will come around. I’ve spoken to Carolyn. We just need to make sure you have more support to get you through this one. Everything will be alright. You’ll see”.

He did his best to reassure his young charge. But as he looked at her, more fragile than he had ever seen her.

He had his doubts.

Chapter Text

Eve walked into the surveillance room feeling beyond guilty for the way she had spoken to Villanelle. It hadn’t been intentional. It was just out of complete and utter frustration. She must have typed a text to her 10 times before settling on ‘I am so sorry sweetheart. You’re right. You are my Oksana. My Roxie. My beautiful girl.’ She hadn’t heard anything back but she knew Villanelle would be in full Talia Petrov mode.

She also felt a little guilty for the way she behaved with Carolyn.

“Hi!” She said tentatively and Carolyn turned to look at her sympathetically. “Oh. Hello Eve. Dumpling?” she asked as she pushed the tray towards Eve and Eve took a seat. “Sure. That would be great thanks!” Eve sat beside Carolyn and took a pork dumpling.

‘Carolyn I’m sorry for the way I spoke to you earlier. The things you said about me being too close were valid.” Eve said awkwardly.

“Yes well. I suppose the things you said about Milton being in love with Villanelle, or the Villanelle as you know her to be in your personal spaces were valid too. She’s a very…..endearing young lady our Villanelle isn’t she?”

Eve chuckled and it was bittersweet. “She is. Very much so!”

‘And softer than I think any of us realised!” Carolyn added.

“Yes!” Eve agreed emphatically.

“It’s quite common you know. In this line of work. When a young person develops exceptional skills. They come across as accomplished, confident and worldly. Yet with all the effort refining their craft. All the sacrifices and dedication it takes to be the best, somewhere along the way it’s like their other life skills remain undeveloped. Leading them to be quite child-like and vulnerable in many ways. Kenny is like that to an extent you may have noticed” Carolyn mused and Eve smiled adoringly as she pictured Villanelle smiling at her with huge green innocent eyes. So was her beautiful girl.

‘Here!” Carolyn handed Eve a pair of airpods connected to the feed and Eve looked at her in surprise. “I thought you said I was too close”

“Yes well, realising you’re too close and being able to disentangle yourself are two different things entirely. Konstantin is waiting outside the studio as we speak. She has back up. Make no mistake I’ll pull the plug on your involvement if ever I deem it absolutely necessary but I don’t think building a wall between the two of you is going to do either of you or this mission any good at the moment.” Carolyn said matter of factly and Eve took the airpods gratefully.

‘What have I missed?” Eve asked as she looked at the image of the empty studio on the screen before them and Carolyn shrugged “Milton running Villanelle through quite beautiful choreography, definitely trying to establish intimacy with her. He has a big party coming up for “buyers” to view prospective girls that Villanelle is valiantly trying to get an invite to but so far has failed. He’s really trying to shelter her from all that. He really wants her for himself I believe! She’s just excused herself to go to the bathroom. I’m unsure of whether she’s touching base with Konstantin or looking to touch base with me yet”

Carolyn looked at Eve in surprise as she pulled out an excellent bottle of white.

“This is stressful….so I have wine! I also have dessert too” Eve explained and Carolyn smiled at her genuinely.

‘Marvellous!”

Eve popped the airpods in her ears and poured both Carolyn and herself a very large glass of wine.

“Excuse me Carolyn are you there?” Came Villanelle’s voice over the feed and Carolyn pushed her ear piece to her ear. ‘Yes Villanelle I’m here. Is everything alright?”

Eve gave her a tense glance but said nothing.

‘Yes it is, I’m just in the toilets. I’ve tried and tried but I can’t get an invite to this party. But I know Lachlan wants to attract high profile “buyers” and I think I know a way. My best child hood friend Dimitry Mikhailov, Natalia’s grandson. You’ve probably met him at one of Antony’s parties. He’s coming to London to sit on the board of a prestigious arts prize. We’ve danced together many times and he’s kind of a big deal. If I could somehow explain him as a family friend and ask to do a duet with him and get Lachlan to agree. I could get inside access to the party and we could get Antony and his skill set in the room as well.

“You did the right thing checking with me” Carolyn began “Normally it is risky but this is a short term investigation and we need to be inside that party. You and Dimitry, this is the age of social media. Are there photos of you online dancing together, much of a trail?

“Not really, there are photos from when we were younger. We were together on and off while I was still figuring out I prefer women and he was figuring out that he likes men. Before I introduced him to his husband but I was very skinny and poor. I looked different. Also there is no online presence of Oksana Astankova. She does not exist.”

Carolyn looked thoughtful “Alright. I’ll get Kenny on top of wiping anything he can find immediately. Go back and tell Lachlan Dimitry was a former student of your grandmothers in Russia before she had her stroke and that this is the connection. We’ll work out the back story from here. Charm him and get him distracted after you dangle the carrot so that he doesn’t ask to”

“Okay I will. I have to go” Villanelle said and her mike went silent.

Carolyn fired off a text to Kenny from her MI6 burner phone and Eve pondered the information she’d just heard. Villanelle had told her all about Dimitry. They were very close. Perhaps he could be a key in her finding out what was really going on with her beautiful girl. She sat up a little straighter as her lover appeared on the screen wearing a cute pair of spandex black and white polka dot booty shorts and a matching crop top. Her hair was in a bouncy high curly ponytail and she was wearing a matching headband that tied with a little bow. She looked so very lovely and innocent. It made her feel even worse about what had transpired that afternoon.

“Hey beautiful!” Lachlan’s face lit up as he moved back into view and Villanelle clasped her hands together. ‘Okay so I have an idea. You know Dimitry Mikailov?”

‘Of course, brilliant international performer” Lachlan replied and Villanelle nodded ‘Well he is a former student of my grandmothers from Russia and a family friend. He is coming to London and I’m almost positive I can get him to dance a duet with me at the party. That would elevate the status of the event wouldn’t it? Bring in more investors for the company?”

Lachlan’s face lit up. “Are you kidding? That would be amazing! “

“I know right?” Villanelle asked as she ran to Lachlan and jumped into his arms, wrapping her arms and legs around him and he spun her around ‘Princess, You’re incredible. You’re like a little angel!” he gushed. “Whatever can I do to thank you?”

“Feed me! I’m hungry!” Villanelle said with a cute pout as she slid out of his arms and stared up at him with big puppy dog eyes.

“Now how can I resist that cute little face!” Lachlan said adoringly as he tapped her nose and both Eve and Carolyn cringed.

*********************************************************

Lachlan had consumed ¾ a bottle of wine where as Villanelle had only had half a glass.

“Where did you get the scar on your abdomen princess?” he asked her and Villanelle traced her scar affectionately.

“Lovers quarrel!” she offered and Eve nearly choked on her own wine.

“You can’t be serious?” Lachlan asked and Villanelle giggled. “Some thugs approached my grandmother and I one evening a while back. They saw her with her walking stick and thought her an easy target. They mugged her. I tried really hard to defend her but one of them stabbed me. It was a clean wound though. In and out. Could have been worse”

Lachlan looked horrified ‘Darling how traumatic for you I’m so sorry!” Villanelle shrugged. “It’s okay it’s over now. So tell me about this party?”

“Let me get you some more wine!” Lachlan said as he topped up Villanelle’s glass. “Lachie I don’t think that’s a good idea, I’m only 16, I don’t want to get you into trouble”

Lachlan laughed “You are just the sweetest little thing! Drink up!” he said as he practically forced the glass to Villanelles lips and she obediently drank.

“There’s my good girl!” He said approvingly.

“I feel sick!” Eve muttered aloud. It was something she said to Villanelle all the time in bed when they power exchanged and she came alive. But on the screen she looked like she was wilting.

“The party….” Villanelle prodded further. ‘I only ask because I need to make sure I wear the right outfit and do the right kind of dance. I need everything to be perfect. I want to make you proud of me Lachie!”

Lachlan beamed at her “Of course you do. And you will princess! You’ll be amazing. There’s some not very nice men that go to that party. Promise me that when you’re not in the dressing room or on stage you will be on my arm so I can keep you safe!”

Villanelle shrugged in an easy going manner “Of course, where else would I be?”

“I am so damn lucky!” Lachlan said as he looked her up and down lustfully.

“Do you have any idea how beautiful you are?” he asked Villanelle and she giggled a little uncomfortably. “Lachie…..It’s getting late I should go!”

“No I’m serious! We’re friends aren’t we?” he asked and Villanelle nodded “Well yes but…”

She was cut off by him suddenly pressing his lips to hers and she pushed him away.

“Lachie don’t…..I’m not very good at this. I don’t really know how….”

Lachlan pulled her closer ‘You’re inexperienced, it’s okay my darling I find it so attractive believe me.”

Lachlan lay Villanelle back on the blanket and she closed her eyes trying to fight the flashbacks.

“Little Oksana…Come here…….why are you crying little slut? Little whores like you love it rough. This is exactly what you deserve…tell me how much you love my cock! SAY IT” She felt the back hand across her face like it was yesterday and her whole body jerked “No” she whimpered and Lachlan kissed her neck.

‘Relax little one, I’ll look after you!” he assured her as his hand came up to close around her breast and before she knew it he was slipping a hand up the back of her hotpants.

“LACHIE STOP IT” Villanelle cried out as she pushed him off her and sat up ‘Just stop it!” she said vehemently.

Lachlan looked as though he had suddenly snapped out of a trance “Talia sweetheart, forgive me. I had a little too much to drink and lost my head” he apologised profusely and Villanelle quickly gathered her things up.

“I want to go home!” she said as she picked up her back pack and ran out of the studio.

“Dammit Talia I’m sorry!” Lachlan called out after her.

Villanelle ran blindly looking for the first place to hide she could find. She ran into one of the studios and closed the door behind her, locking it.

Eve jumped up and out of her chair. “Wait where did she go? Find her Carolyn”

Carolyn flicked the screen through the cameras in the various studios till they saw Villanelle pacing in one, clearly very upset. She was crying and flapping her hands as though she could will herself to calm down. Then suddenly she lurched forward and threw up all over on the floor.

“Oh sweetheart” Eve gasped aloud and as though the vomiting gave her a shot of adrenalin Villanelle picked up her back pack, ran over to the window and opened it, deftly climbing out of it.

Carolyn immediately dialled Konstantin’s number.

‘It’s me, you need to do a drive around the corner, Villanelle is exiting the studio out a window, I don’t know where……..alright………excellent……Yes I’ll stay on the line………Excellent keep me posted!”

“Konstantin has her in the car” Carolyn said as she hung up.

“I’ll fucking destroy that animal” Eve vowed and even Carolyn looked stricken.

“Carolyn I had to leave!” came Villanelle’s voice in the earpiece and Carolyn pushed the earpiece to her ear “That’s quite alright Villanelle. I was watching the surveillance. Safety comes first”

Villanelle whimpered and it just about broke Eve’s heart “I would have been better normally, I’m sorry I really don’t think I’m well. Maybe I’m coming down with something!”

“Nonsense you were wonderful. You did exactly the right thing. If you had have let him have his way with you what’s to stop him casting you aside for the next girl. The mission is in tact. You’ve done us proud. Milton will likely come back incredibly remorseful and repentant as he should and willing to give you just about anything you want!”

“Did…..did Eve see?” Villanelle’s voice quivered and Eve shook her head mouthing “No no no” to Carolyn and Carolyn watched Eve carefully.

“No, Eve left hours ago…Listen, why don’t you have tomorrow off and have a little rest.” Carolyn offered gently.

“Okay, thank you Carolyn.” came Villanelle’s shaky reply.

“You get some rest. Goodnight Villanelle”

Villanelle’s mike went silent and Carolyn looked at Eve questioningly “You want to pretend you didn’t see what you just saw. Why?”

Eve’s eyes filled with tears “Oh god….I cannot un see that trust me. But we fought this afternoon. The things I said to her. If she knew I just saw that right now she would feel so much worse. And what just happened wasn’t remotely her fault.”

“No it was not” Carolyn agreed

“She would have used her sex appeal and gone further than that with clients 1000 times on missions before. Yet here it’s like she’s had some kind of PTSD meltdown. What was that?” Eve asked, desperate to find a way to help her.

Carolyn sighed “My guess would be that beating Paedophiles is a cause very personal to young Villanelle. I’m beginning to expect this isn’t the first time she’s encountered one. In fact I’ve suspected since this operation began and my suspicions are only getting stronger.”

Eve felt sick to her stomach. But Carolyn had a point. Any target of Villanelle’s who was a paedophile had always met a particularly slow and agonizing end. The erratic behaviour of Villanelle in the past fortnight, the secrecy with Natalia and Konstantin.

“Oh my god” she gasped as her hand went to her mouth and the tears spilled down her face. Her phone buzzed in her pocket and she pulled it out to find a reply to her earlier text from Villanelle “I am so sorry too. I love you so much Eve. Please don’t give up on me.”

Her honest plea after what she’d just endured, as all the pieces of the puzzle began to fall into place only made Eve’s tears come faster.

“You mustn’t push her right now Eve. It’s very important. It’s not just about compromising the mission. She could have a complete and utter breakdown. I’ll consult our psychiatric team and we’ll go from there.”

Eve nodded wordlessly, in total shock.

“And you mustn’t confront Natalia. She’s a good woman with Russian mafia royalty contacts and my gut says we can trust her but she’s loyal to Villanelle and any secrets she’s keeping. Even Konstantin is tight lipped on this. Whatever it is, it’s big. Just leave it with me.”

“Alright” Eve said as she picked up her bag “My beautiful girl. I have to go to her”

“Of course. I’ll have a car take you. Have the morning tomorrow as well. Take your time coming in. Just remember what I said okay?”

“I will” Eve said as she hurried out of Carolyn’s office.

*****************************************************************
“I Don’t want to wake Ooshka” Villanelle said in a far away voice as Konstantin Quietly walked her up the stairs to her room.

“Alright!” he whispered as he took her inside and closed the door behind them.

“And I don’t want Eve to know about this. Please don’t tell her” Villanelle pleaded tearfully and Konstantin nodded.

“Alright. I won’t tell her but Villanelle you must talk to her. You have to open up to her soon. She loves you. What happened tonight. What happened 13 years ago won’t change anything! Villanelle it wasn’t your fault. None of it was your…”

‘Please just stop. I need to shower. I feel so dirty!” Villanelle pleaded and Konstantin sighed ‘Of course very well. I will be downstairs. I will stay the night. You are safe”

“Thank you” Villanelle said and Konstantin went to hug her but she sprang back from his touch like she had been burned just as she always did when she was having one of these moments and he knew better than to push her.

“I will be downstairs!”

Villanelle went into her ensuite, pulled a pill box out of the draw and took 10mg of diazepam. Then after turning on the shower she stripped off her clothes, stepped in and began doing her best to scrub off every single ounce of Lachlan Milton.

Eve used the keys Villanelle gave her to open the house and closed the door behind her.

“Oh Eve!” Konstantin said casually. ‘I just dropped Villanelle off a little while ago. I am tired. I think I’ll just stay here the night!”

“Of course!” Eve said, remembering what Carolyn had insisted about keeping things to themselves.

“If you’ll excuse me I was pretty hard on Villanelle earlier. I need to go make it up to her!” Eve said and Konstantin gently grasped her arm “Oh….be gentle with her would you? I think she is feeling a bit under the weather!” he said and Eve noted it wasn’t said as a handler but with a fatherly love.

“That’s no good. I’ll look after her. Goodnight Konstantin!” she said quietly

***************************************************

Eve sat on the bed waiting for Villanelle. All she wanted to do was wrap her up in her arms and keep her safe forever. She knew she had to be so careful with her at that moment.

Villanelle walked out of the bathroom dressed in a pastel pink satin bathrobe looking so beautiful but more pale and fragile than Eve had ever seen her. When she looked up to see Eve she was stunned.

“Eve, what are you doing here?” She asked and Eve stood up.

“I felt awful about the way we left things this afternoon sweetheart, the things I said…I wanted to be with you!”

Villanelle took one look at Eve’s grief-stricken face and died inside. “You are a terrible liar Eve! You were not at home were you? You saw what happened….” Her lip quivered and her eyes filled with tears that she angrily wiped away.

Eve approached her slowly, tears filling her own eyes “I did Roxie. When you asked Carolyn I panicked and asked her to tell you I wasn’t. I didn’t want you thinking I would blame you.”

“You must be so disappointed in me! I went and did exactly what you accused me of wanting to do” Villanelle said, her entire face clouded with shame as she went and sat on the bed, bringing her knees up to her chest and Eve was aghast.

“Sweetheart no. I was shooting my mouth off because I’m worried about you. I’m so fearful you’re hiding something that is really hurting you but Milton is an animal and what happened wasn’t your fault. You said no. No means no. I saw you reject him and he didn’t listen.”

“They never do. They don’t care!” Villanelle said with such a lost look in her eyes that it broke Eve apart. She crawled onto the bed and sat beside Villanelle and with infinite tenderness she gathered her young lover’s rigid body in her arms. “Roxie, my beautiful girl. I love you so much. I’m here, you’re safe.

Eve felt Villanelle slowly melting into her embrace until the young woman’s head rested on her shoulder.

“Come here sweet girl” Eve commanded lovingly but firmly as she pulled back the covers and removed her robe. Villanelle followed obediently and Eve deftly but quickly removed Villanelle’s robe before laying them down and pressing herself against her young lover.

“See? skin to skin. Not so long ago you told me that everything would feel better and be easier if we were skin to skin and you were right my love. Is it helping you?”

Villanelle felt the warmth of Eve’s breasts pressed against hers, felt her arms wrapped around her own shaking body, looked back at her eyes looking at her with so much love and understanding and burst into tears. “Yes” she gasped and Eve cradled Villanelle in her arms.

“Oh Roxie, sweetheart. My beautiful girl. It’s alright, I’ve got you! I’m not going anywhere!” Eve held Villanelle tight and stroked her hair. “You mustn’t think I would ever give up on you. On us.” She said referring to Villanelle’s earlier text. “You haven’t given up on me from the moment we met and I won’t give up on you!”

“Oh Eve……Everything is such a mess” Villanelle sobbed and Eve blinked back her own tears at her beautiful girl’s distress.

‘I know my darling. I’ve known for a while. I’ve seen you struggling so these past couple of weeks.” Eve said softly as she rocked Villanelle in her arms.

“I know I’ve been making you crazy. There’s things you don’t know about me, awful things I need to tell you, but I can’t do it all at once. I can’t do it right now. But I can’t bear to disappoint you either. I’m so sorry for everything.”

“Shhhhhh it’s alright. You’ve got nothing to be sorry for. It doesn’t have to be tonight. I’m here when you’re ready.

Villanelle simply covered her face with her hands and nodded.

“Don’t do that sweet baby. I need you to look at me. I need to see those incredible green eyes when I tell you what I’m about to tell you.” Eve said in a tone so full of emotion and conviction that Villanelle didn’t fight her when she gently took her hands away from her face.

“I meant what I said this morning” Eve said as she took Villanelle’s face between her hands. “You are my good girl. My beautiful sweet girl. My Roxie. And nothing. And I mean nothing could ever or will ever change that. Do you understand that?”

Villanelle nodded tearfully and hugged Eve tightly “I love you so much.”

Eve held Villanelle even more tightly. “I know you do sweetheart. I love you too. Everything is going to be alright!”

Chapter Text

Eve woke up as the bright morning sunlight filtered in and realised Villanelle wasn’t in bed. She quickly put her robe on and ran downstairs. Hearing music she ran down the next flight to the basement and almost bumped into Natalia.

“Oh my god Natalia I’m sorry!”

‘It is alright my darling. My Dimitry got home late last night. They are downstairs in the studio workshopping a routine for this party. I see the pain in your eyes this morning child. My Oksana told me how wonderful you were last night. I want you to know that my family is unconventional I know. We are not all blood related. But we love each other as best as each of us can like we are. You have been so good to my baby girl. She loves you like she has loved no other. I can see that.”

Despite the horrific turn of events the evening before Eve found herself breaking into the biggest smile.

‘And I can see how much you love her. I would be honoured if you would call me Ooshka” Natalia said sincerely and Eve was touched and found herself voicing her insecurity.

“Even though I’m so much older than Oksana and closer to the age of a daughter than a granddaughter?

Natalia shrugged ‘Dimitry’s husband Antony is 38. Also older than he. Age is just a number. It is what is in the heart that matters. I would be proud to be babushka to you young lady” Eve beamed and hugged Natalia “Thank you Ooshka”

“Besides. Older is good. Lets face it, keeping her in line is a full time job!”

Both women laughed and Eve suddenly looked worried. “How is she?”

Natalia rolled her eyes. “She is a stubborn little shit like always, pretending valiantly she is okay when its clear she is not. Like I said. Fulltime job. Come my darling. Come meet my other baby”

When they walked into the studio Eve saw Villanelle perched gracefully on the left shoulder of the most beautiful young man she think she’d ever seen with one leg crossed over the other. They literally looked like two living dolls together. Eve looked at Villanelle’s rapidly shrinking frame in concern. Wearing only a simple pair of black booty shorts and plain black crop and on the shoulder of this strapping muscular over 6ft tall man she looked smaller than she had ever seen her.

“Roxie straighten your back you’re slouching” Dimitry guided her in a similar Russian accent to hers though his wasn’t quite as thick and she straightened her back. It was then that Eve noticed ribs in the light.

Dimitry caught sight of Eve and put Villanelle down. ‘Well there she is! The famous Eve Polastri” he said as he went to Eve and picked her up, spinning her around and hugging her tight. Eve was a little taken aback but found him very endearing. He was like a big puppy dog.

“I am so excited to meet you! All she talks about since the moment she met you is “Eve this and Eve that!”

“I’ve heard a lot of wonderful things about you too” Eve said happily and Villanelle narrowed her eyes at Dimitry. “Give her to me. She is mine Dimitry!”

Dimitry chuckled ‘Here you go. I know you’re a terrible sharer!” Villanelle walked over and took Eve out of his arms as effortlessly as if she was a soft toy and wrapped her petite lovers legs around her.

“Mine!” She said possessively as she hugged Eve and Eve wrapped her arms tightly around Villanelle’s neck “Yours” she agreed.

When Eve pulled back to look at Villanelle she looked very beautiful but very pale. “How are you sweetheart?”

Villanelle whispered in Eve’s ear “Horny!” but something in Eve’s gut told her it was bravado. “How are you really?” Villanelle looked down and they were interrupted by Natalia. “I brought you some orange juice Malenk’iy you look pale. I think you should sit for a moment”

“Ooshka I am fine I don’t want any juice”

Eve was hesitant to do it after what had happened to her beautiful girl the previous evening but she took Villanelle’s chin In her hand and said “Roxie, you are pale. You need a break. I want you to take the juice and go and sit on the comfy chair for me and drink it for me alright?” Villanelle sighed but nodded obediently as she often did when she heard that certain tone of Eve’s “Yes baby!” she said a little begrudgingly but still reached for the juice with her hand. “Thank you Ooshka!” She said politely.

“Good girl” Eve whispered as she slid out of her arms. Dimitry watched the scene before him with awed interest as Eve walked Villanelle over to the chair and Villanelle sat on it and took a sip of her Juice and then looked up at Eve so anxiously her heart just about broke.

“Am I in trouble? Are you angry with me?” her voice quivered a little and Eve bent down to cup her face. “No sweet baby. You’re not in trouble. Carolyn has said that I can take a slow morning to look after you though so I’m just going to go let Natalia know I’ll be around for breakfast alright?” Villanelle relaxed visibly ‘Oh alright. It will be lovely to have you with me a little longer. I love you” she said sweetly and Eve leant in and hugged her ‘I love you too Roxie. So much.” When she pulled back she kissed Villanelle’s nose “You my beautiful girl?”

Villanelle nodded but there was so much doubt in her beautiful green eyes and it broke Eve to see how unsure she was after the previous evenings trauma. “Good girl” she said in adoration as she kissed Villanelle’s head and went over to where Dimitry and Natalia stood talking in hushed tones.

“She’s on Valium again” he said in concern and Eve looked at him in surprise ‘How do you know that?”

“Because I can always tell when I dance with her. She feels different. She goes floppy, doesn’t hold her weight the same and if she’s not kept alert she kind of zones out.”

Natalia squeezed his arms “My Darling it is prescription and prescribed for a reason and after what she’s been through last night it is no surprise”

“Yeah but we know her she’s the most stubborn little shit on the planet. Imagine how badly she must be feeling to aknowledge that she needs it at the moment and to take it. And it’s not just that. She must be 15 pounds lighter than when we last danced together in Tuscany a few months back. I mean I know she had her wisdom teeth out”

‘No you’re right Dimitry she must have lost 10 of those just in the past fortnight. I’ve watched her shrinking before my eyes but haven’t known why until a few things were revealed last night and things started making more sense.” Eve said in concern.

“Are you drinking your juice brat?” Dimitry called out lovingly as he approached Villanelle and when he got close he said “Don’t think I didn’t notice that little low key D/s action you had going there babe you let her top you?” he teased and Eve shrugged ‘So what if I do. So what if I like it”

Dimitry chuckled “No I get really I do. She’s got that cute as fuck sexy little Asian librarian thing going for her and those wild curls”

Villanelle scrunched her face up ‘Shut up, do not talk about her like that!” and he teased her further. “No really, I reckon I’d be into it too!”

Villanelle got off the chair and pressed her finger into his chest ‘You touch her and I will cut out your spleen. You already have a husband. This is my turn, this is the woman that I will marry!”

“Is everything alright?” Eve asked from behind Dimitry and Villanelle froze.

“Yes baby. Dimitry was just saying he found you sexy and though I understand he’s only human I was just explaining I would cut out his spleen if he touched you. I finished my juice!”

Dimitry put an arm around Villanelle “We banter. It’s how we show affection”

“Breakfast Children!” Natalia called and Eve took hold of Villanelle’s hand as they headed up to breakfast. Unable to bite back her smile.

She could have sworn Villanelle said she was going to marry her.

**********************************************************

 

Everyone sat laughing chatting and eating at the breakfast table except for Villanelle. Eve was so worried about her. Dimitry was right. She had zoned out and It was like she was a million miles away. Even when Dimitry’s husband Antony who seemed like a lovely man…as far as deadly assassins went and seemed to care for her greatly had joined them she had barely responded.

“I had a knife made for you by this incredible swiss arms maker I met Bella” Tony said to her excitedly. She’s a beauty. Flawless steel, pink mother of pearl handle. Perfect size for your pretty little hand. She’ll do some damage alright!”

“Sounds amazing! thank you Tony!” Villanelle said but her smile didn’t reach her eyes. “It’s my pleasure Bella!” Antony said as he put an arm around her and gave her a squeeze. Eve had urged her to eat 3 times but all she’d done was pick at her toast. That Animal had been calling and texting her “Talia” phone non-stop and had already sent a huge floral arrangement and big teddy bear to the house. She was sure that hadn’t helped at all.

“Do you have something to wear to this party tonight Milen’kiy? Are you still going to go?” Natalia asked Villanelle and Villanelle looked at her in surprise.

“Of course I’m going to go. Last night was a temporary setback but I am a professional” Villanelle said vehemently.

“Are you out of your mind? After what he did to you?” Eve asked and Villanelle shrugged ‘I’m just going to get the information I need and then kill him. That’s what I’m good at. I’m not cut out for this undercover shit. Assassins are too unique and obscure a skill set to be wasting their talent.

‘Cheers to that my colleague!” Antony said as he and Villanelle clinked their juice glasses but Eve’s gut was telling her a lot of it was just bravado.

“Roxie the fundraiser ball is tonight sweetheart with MI6 remember?” she said gently and Villanelle nodded “Yes I do, that is why I have two outfits. Dance party starts early, go to dance party, get information, change clothes, go to ball with my gorgeous Eve!”

Eve was about to respond when a text from Kenny flashed up on her watch telling her he needed to speak to her. Almost simultaneously one flashed up from Carolyn saying she hoped Villanelle was alright and if Eve could make her way into the office as soon as possible it would be good. She really didn’t want to leave Villanelle.

“Sweetheart I think I’ll need to go into the office soon. Do you think if you’re feeling up to it you might want to come with me?”

Villanelle shot Konstantin a sideways glance and he cleared his throat “Maybe Villanelle can have a lazy morning and then I will bring her to MI6. Will give me a chance to have coffee with Carolyn!”

“Roxie would you please eat something!” Eve pleaded and Dimitry backed her “Yeah kiddo even your tits have gotten smaller!”

“They have not!” Villanelle countered and in perfect unison Eve and Dimitry said ‘Yes they have!’

Dimitry and Eve looked at each other in surprise and then burst out laughing. As did everyone else at the table. Even Villanelle had a wry little smile and Eve leant over and whispered “Though I still hold them in very high regard!”

Villanelle squeezed Antony’s hand under the table then stood up

“Where are you going Oksana?” Natalia asked and Villanelle pushed her chair in.

“For a run Ooshka. I need to clear my head. And I actually oddly am craving one of those banana splits from that little place I love. It’s not breakfast I know but it’s what I want to eat!”

“Then you should eat it sweetheart!” Eve said encouragingly and Villanelle bent down to kiss her head ‘Have fun at work! I’ll see you a little later” She looked down at Antony and he stood up.

“You know what? Roxie has been bragging this place is as good as the real deal in my hometown of Siena Italy for some time. I’m down for a run and proving her wrong! We’ll see everyone a little later!”

He put a protective arm around her and they left the room. Eve’s face was stricken with worry and Natalia reassured her. “Eve darling do not worry. He wouldn’t ever let any harm come to her.”

“Yeah! We can worry that they've had a lot of hot and kinky sex, that was the fun fact she introduced me to my husband with the night we met but I wouldn’t ever worry about him allowing someone to so much as touch a hair on her head!” Dimitry joked and Eve turned to him and said.

“You know? I really get why you and Roxie are so close. Same complete lack of filter”

Everyone cracked up and Dimitry pointed to Eve and said “I like this girl! She is a keeper.”

 

************************************************************
Villanelle stood outside the studio Wearing her black running tights and baby pink fitted running jacket, her hair in low pigtails. Of course she was never going for a run. Or a banana split.

“You ready Bella?” Antony asked and Villanelle smiled at him gratefully. His specialty as an assassin was chemical warfare and he also dabbled in IT. And it was something she was very grateful for at that moment.

“Yes! “Villanelle said with a lot more conviction than she felt and Antonio put a small grenade style device and flash drive in her pocket. Flash drive into the laptop. Flip the switch. Will override any passwords or encryption and clone the whole thing in less than two minutes. Chemical weapon into the air vent.

“Got it. See you soon!”

Villanelle walked into the studio and down to Lachlan’s office. It was deserted as she expected it would be at that time of the morning. Quickly putting the flash drive into his computer and flicking the button she climbed up to the air vent and pushed the cover up then carefully positioned the chemical grenade inside it. She then climbed down and had just seen the green light go off on the usb and pulled it out of the laptop when she heard Lachlan approaching talking on his phone. She steeled herself and quickly took a seat in front of his desk.

Lachlan opened the door and was stunned to see Villanelle.

“I have to call you back!”

Lachlan ran and dropped to his knees in front of Villanelle. “Princess. You don’t know how good it is to see you. I am so sorry for what I did last night. I’d had too much wine and I lost control. You’re just so beautiful. And I can’t stop myself from wanting you. I’ve tried so hard.”

Villanelle felt ill but she laid it on thick. “You hurt me Lachie. I thought that I was special to you” she said with her face full of hurt and Lachlan took her hands in his.

“You are, you are so very special to me little one. I’m falling in love with you. I mean that. I promise you! I know there’s a huge age difference between us but…”

“I don’t like boys my own age anyway. All they do is hurt me. And then you hurt me too!” She said and Lachlan nodded. “I did. I’m so so so sorry!”

Villanelle leant forward and pressed her forehead against his and softly said “You have to go slower with me Lachie. If you want me you need to not rush me!”

Lachlan looked at her in awe. “Does this mean? Are you saying?” Villanelle nodded “Yes!”

He placed the most featherlight kiss on her lips and gently took her into his arms. “Oh Talia my beautiful little princess we will be so happy together. And as soon as you’re old enough baby I’ll marry you. You’re so special. You’re the little one I’ve been searching for my whole adult life. My perfect little girl! We’ll go as slow as you need”

Villanelle’s stomach churned and her eyes blazed.

“Listen, I want you to go and buy yourself something pretty for tonight” Lachlan said as he took a wad of bills out of his pocket and handed her $1000.

Villanelle did her best to pretend she knew where to find a formal occasion dress for under $1000. “Oh Lachie you don’t have to. That’s a lot of money!”

Lachlan took a seat beside her “Nonsense my love. My princess will only have the best. I’ll or course arrange for you to have your own card as soon as possible so you can have as many pretty things as your heart desires. Besides. Business is booming. And I just met with our top investor. He is very very happy with me and the work we are doing here. Look at what he gave me!”

Lachlan pulled out a box of very expensive Russian cigars from his bag but it wasn’t the cigars that made all of time stand still for Villanelle. It was the Tell tale seal on it One she would know anywhere.

“Talia are you alright darling?” Lachlan asked in concern and Villanelle forced herself to remain calm “That seal on the cigars!”

Lachlan laughed “Yes he’s a very unique character our Mr Sokolov” Villanelle felt a wave of nausea at the name.

“Lachlan, I have a History project for my distance education course and I’m doing Tudor England. I know this isn’t English but it looks so authentic from that time. Do you think I could have the seal?”

Lachlan tapped her nose “My diligent little angel. Of course you can. Here let me take it off for you!” Lachlan took a letter opener and carefully cut off the wax seal leaving it in tact.

“It’s so fancy. Is he very fancy Lachie? Is he staying at a very fancy hotel?” He chuckled. “You are the cutest little thing. He is staying at the Dorchester.”

“That is a very beautiful place!” Villanelle said, her face lighting up and Lachlan handed her the seal. “Then I will take you there for lunch tomorrow and anywhere else you want to go!”

Villanelle sighed. “I need to get back to my grandma cause I’ll be busy this afternoon with our party. But I will see you tonight?”

“Of course you will princess. You’re mine now”

Villanelle leant over and hugged him, smiling as a voice in her head screamed. “No. I am Eve’s and you are going to die!”

She got up and went over to the door and opened it, giving him a cute smile and a little wave before she disappeared out of it.
When the door was closed behind her Villanelle walked quickly out the back to the loading dock where she’d left Antony. When she got out there she gulped for fresh air and leant against the wall, praying it would hold her up.

“Roxie…Bella what happened what did he do?” Antony demanded and picked her up in his strong arms. Villanelle held up the seal and Antony knew he’d seen it before.

‘Dear god, after all these years?” he asked and Villanelle’s voice quivered. “Its Sokolov’s seal. I would know it anywhere. I know who is the king pin of the paedophile ring now. Who is orchestrating it all. It is Sokolov. Milton confirmed it was his “top investor”

“Oh god, my darling” Antony said as he crushed Villanelle to him protectively “I’m so sorry. He just disappeared off the face of the earth It’s like he was invisible”

Villanelle clung to Antony “No he was elusive. Not invisible. Because he is here, at the Dorchester!”

Antony pried Villanelle’s face from his shoulder. “What do you need Bella?”

Villanelle took a deep breath. “We need to go get him now. We need to get him from the hotel before the party. There is a place attached to MI6 where I have “worked” on people before. And I need all of his technology devices. Tonight is a huge night in his ring. He will have all of his resources with him.”

“Alright. Are you ready to face him right now?” Villanelle’s eyes filled with tears “I’m sorry. I don’t think that I am!”

Antony tugged one of her pigtails affectionately “It’s okay Bella. I’ll call some help. We will go in and take him. I will signal to you and you can gather up anything of interest to your case! Come on Roxie lets go you can do this. I have faith in you. You’re the most bad ass assassin I know. You’ve had a shock but it will pass.”

Villanelle slid out of Antony’s arms. “I have waited for this day for so long. The Syringe is in the fridge back at the house. I’ve been keeping it here of all locations. It is meant to be!”

Antony pulled her close ‘That’s the spirit. Let’s go make this animal pay for what he did to you!”

************************************************************

Eve went into Carolyn’s office to see Carolyn and Kenny finally in there looking rather sombre but she was frustrated. ‘Where have the two of you been? You call me in and then you disappear for hours!”

“We’ve come across some things checking Villanelle’s online presence, to ensure she couldn’t be linked to Dimitry as Oksana when she dances with him as Talia tonight” Carolyn said and Eve shrugged “What could you have possibly come across? She doesn’t have an online presence!”
Kenny looked at Eve sympathetically. “No she doesn’t but Dimitry does. We found this on his facebook from about 13 years ago.”

Carolyn pressed play and a Video of Dimitry and Villanelle dressed in dance costumes came up on the screen. Eve watched in awe as a 13 year old Villanelle twirled gracefully. She was flat chested and so painfully thin that all the bones in her chest were visible. Yet she didn’t look ill somehow. Her little face was round, her long chestnut coloured hair reached almost her waist and she was the most strikingly beautiful child.

“Oh wow. Vintage Villanelle!” Eve said as her face took on a dreamy look and Carolyn and Kenny exchanged a concerned look.

“Woxie woxie!” Came a chirpy little voice. “Woxie woxie! Wook at me! I’m a ballawina too!”

All of a sudden a gorgeous little toddler bounded onto the screen and Eve gasped. She was like a carbon copy of Villanelle. Almost exactly the same face, she just had slightly fairer hair.

She ran to Villanelle and Villanelle picked her up and spun the baby around in the air while she squealed in delight and the look of love, pride and utter joy when she brought the tiny child down to cuddle her was unlike anything she’d ever seen on the young woman’s face. The only thing that had even come close was when her young lover looked at her.

“Stop the video!” Eve said and Carolyn paused it. ‘Who is the little girl?” she asked desperately and Kenny bit his lip. “We thought maybe you might be able to tell us!”

Eve shook her head “No…I don’t know who she is.”

Villanelle headed towards Carolyn’s office in search of Eve and hoping Carolyn was with her. Extracting Sokolov had been surprisingly easy. The animal had gotten cocky in his old age. Cocky and sloppy and Antony had always been a master of extraction. He’d taught Villanelle everything he knew. But she had to show the seal to Carolyn and explain she’d cracked the code.

Inside Carolyn’s office Eve stood staring at the screen in shock. “Rewind it. Play it again”

It began playing and Villanelle’s hands got clammy as she heard “Woxie Woxie!”

“Katya” she whimpered. She was hearing things. She stood outside Carolyn’s office

“Woxie Woxie! Wook at me! I’m a ballerina too!” She wasn’t hearing things that was her.

“KATYA” she screamed as she opened the door to Carolyn’s office and looked frantically around the room for any sign of her baby. “Katya!” she cried out again and then she registered Carolyn looking at her very seriously, Eve looking somewhat upset and Kenny sitting behind a laptop. She really was losing it.
“Oh….I’m sorry, I thought I heard…It was silly….I” It was then she registered the video playing on the large screen and her eyes went wide.

“Oh my god!” she brought her hands to her mouth. ‘Where did you get that?” she asked in shock.

“From Dimitry’s facebook. He posted it many years ago” Carolyn said gently and Villanelle’s eyes filled with tears. “That was her 3rd birthday. It took me hours and hours to make that costume. But she was so determined that she would be just like me. That she would be a ballerina too. She always wanted to be just like me. Her “Woxie”

Eve had tears in her own eyes as she went over to Villanelle “Sweetheart who was Katya” Villanelle pursed her lips together taking a deep breath. “My baby sister. My mother killed herself shortly after she was born and my father didn’t want the baby. He barely wanted me. He didn’t even name her. So I called her Katya and I took care of her. I loved her very much!”

Tears were streaming down Eve’s face as she cupped Villanelle’s face in her hand. “What happened to her baby?”

Villanelle’s voice cracked as she sat down on Carolyn’s desk to steady herself. “She was a very sick little girl. And she died when she was 3 ½.”

“Oh sweetheart come here!” Eve gasped as she pulled Villanelle into her arms and held her tightly. “I thought I could hear her calling me. I know it sounds stupid. I know she’s gone…but just for a second….”

Carolyn took the video off the screen and fought very hard not to let any emotion show.

“I am so sorry my beautiful girl. I didn’t know!” Eve apologised and Villanelle took a deep breath and tried to calm herself. “It’s okay. I can’t talk about this right now. I know who the king pin of the Paedophile ring is. It is Ivan Sokolov. This is his seal. I went to see Milton to get information.”

“You what?” Eve asked in confusion and Villanelle hopped off the desk and handed it to Carolyn. She took it and smiled at her kindly.

“Well done Villanelle. Excellent work!”

“And this is all of his stuff. I took it out of his room at the Dorchester. He’s in town for the party tonight” Villanelle grabbed her bag and tipped out an Ipad, a computer and an electronic calender as well as an external hard drive. Antony took off his index finger so I could touch unlock everything and I backed it all up on the hard drive before I was locked out.

Carolyn’s eyes widened “Amazing!”

“How did you know it was his seal? Eve asked and Villanelle looked up at the ceiling ‘Seriously not now baby!” she pleaded and Eve shook her. “You need to stop shutting me out. You need to let me in, please I am begging you! And don’t lie to me. About banana splits or anything else!!”

Villanelle forced herself to turn cold and shrugged “Because he burnt it onto my thigh after he raped me when I was 13!”

“Oh Jesus” Eve gasped in disbelief as she shook her head and Villanelle looked down “It’s part of the reason I’ve been such a head case this past couple of weeks.”

Eve wrapped her arms around Villanelle and held her tightly. Villanelle didn’t cry anymore. She just zoned out and stroked Eve’s curls.

“We know about Sokolov’s attack on you!” Carolyn said softly and Villanelle looked up in surprise. ‘What?” How do you know?”

Eve turned to look at Carolyn in complete bewilderment “Yes how do you know and why didn’t I know?”

“It’s why we called you in Eve. Then Villanelle arrived shortly after. Villanelle were you aware of a video made during your interaction with Sokolov?”

Villanelle nodded ‘He used it to keep me quiet. He said he’d put it all over the internet, blast it all over town on a big screen and I’d never be able to escape what I did. I had nothing. He had everything. So I stayed quiet”

“That monster!” Eve spat vengefully.

“The thing is Villanelle” Kenny began hesitantly “I used the childhood pictures Konstantin got from Natalia to reverse image search you using pretty complex algorithms to check Oksana Astankov’s digital footprint and well….I found something”

Villanelle went pale as Kenny looked at something down at the bottom of his computer screen. ‘What did you find Kenny?” she asked and he began to stammer.

“Well.. um….you might not want to watch it, maybe mum could talk to you privately. With Eve for support. I can leave”

“WHAT DID YOU FUCKING FIND KENNY?” Villanelle yelled.

“Villanelle I’m only thinking of you….” Kenny was cut off by Villanelle snatching the computer off Kenny, finding the minimised window down the bottom and opening it.

‘What is this shit? Porn?” she asked angrily as she pressed play and then dropped the laptop as a vision of her naked, covered in bruises welts and her own blood came onto the screen.

“Get over here you little slut and give me my money’s worth like you gave the others”

Eve felt like she was trapped in a nightmare. She watched as the most despicable animal she had ever seen grabbed her beautiful girl kicking screaming and crying and shoved his dick in her mouth while she cried and then slapped her across the face and began beating her as she begged him to stop. She was a baby and he’d violated her in the most horrific way she had ever encountered and completely broken her down to nothing.

“TURN IT OFF TURN IT OFF TURN IT OFF” Villanelle screamed as she covered her face in her hands and Carolyn pulled the power cord out of the screen and Kenny picked up his laptop and shut it off.

“Kenny your lap top. I am sorry” Villanelle said as she realised what she’d done.

“It’s alright mate” he said gently and she shook her head ‘I will buy you a new one if it is broken. A really good one” she assured him and Eve tried to approach her but she sprang back.

“Oh Eve I am so sorry. You must be so disappointed in me. You won’t ever be able to look at me again!”

“That’s not true sweetheart. None of that was your fault please, just let me hold you!” she said through her tears.

“But it was…It was all my fault. I did things that led me to that point and I ended up in too deep and it was all my fault” Villanelle gasped feeling incredibly light headed.

“Villanelle, what that animal did to you was not your fault. You were 13 years old. You were just a little girl!” Carolyn said sternly and Villanelle began to sway.

“Kenny!” she called out and he caught Villanelle just as she passed out.

‘ROXIE’ Eve screamed as Kenny gently lay her down on the floor and Kenny tried to reassure her. ‘She’s still breathing, I felt it!”

“She’s fainted from shock!” Carolyn said and picked up her phone, dialling for help.

“Roxie please wake up. come back to me!” Eve begged as she picked up Roxie’s head and cradled it in her lap. “You’re safe. I’ve got you. Please wake up. You’re my beautiful girl. Nothing has changed that. I love you so much. I understand now.”

“No…..you don’t” Villanelle mumbled almost incoherently.

‘She’s coming to!” Eve cried out. “Roxie…baby. Talk to me” Eve said as she patted her face firmly trying to shake her into consciousness.

Villanelle’s eyes fluttered open. “You only know part of the story!”

Chapter Text

Villanelle had been checked over by one of the MI6 medics and they agreed it was a combination of dehydration, lack of food and shock that had caused her to faint. She’d confessed to having 7.5 of Valium that day and they’d said given she was prescribed 5mg 3 times a day for PTSD she could have half a tablet but she had calmly informed them she had people to assassinate later and Valium makes her sloppy so she was laying off.

Kenny had used the time to ascertain how much evidence Villanelle had managed to gather and the verdict was that she basically had everything on everyone involved. She was sitting in a chair on a hydration drip in Carolyn’s office and picking at a banana silently. Eve and Carolyn were over on the other side of the office looking at all the information Kenny had found in what Villanelle had brought back.

Villanelle hadn’t felt so low in a long time. But as she looked at her beautiful perfect Eve, her everything, she realised it was a bit late in the game to be keeping secrets from her. Even though part of her was terrified she would never want anything to do with again. There was part of her that desperately wanted to believe they could make it through to the other side.

“All I’d heard my mother’s entire pregnancy was how unwanted my sister was. I’d been lucky to have Natalia looking out for me most of my life. But I wondered what was going to happen to this baby. And the moment they put her in my arms and she looked at me with her big blue green eyes and wrapped her hand around my finger I fell in love with her. Even though I was only 10. I knew what was going to happen. That it was my job to protect her. I barely even felt it when my mother overdosed on pills, I was too wrapped up in caring for a newborn. Katya and I were so connected it was like we were a part of one another. I don’t even know how to explain it. She was my whole world” Villanelle’s voice cracked and she took some deep breaths.

“Sweetheart” Eve went to go to her but Villanelle put her hand out “I need both of you to just stay on that side of the room…Even you baby” she said pleadingly and Eve took a step back.

“She was born with a lung problem but it got worse. She was always sick. I did whatever I could to get money. I stole her medicine. But seeing her like that broke me and she used to cry, pleading for me to make her feel better but I couldn’t!”

“You were a baby yourself dear. Babies aren’t meant to be raising babies” Carolyn said kindly and Eve bit her lip. Carolyn had called Villanelle “dear”.Actually used that word. That’s how bad things were.

“Her health care expenses were getting out of control and stealing from drunks wasn’t cutting it anymore. My father threatened to send her to an orphanage when she was 3 because we found out she could have an operation to help the problem.It wouldn’t totally fix it but her quality of life would be so much better. But the course of medicine she needed and then the operation and after care costs were so great. I loved her so much. I would have done anything to make her better. And watching her die on top of hearing her cry for food was killing me. I’d already left school to care for Katya. I didn’t have a lot but I knew that I was considered very pretty. I was pretty smart too. And I needed a lot of money. I heard that there were men who would pay top dollar for young girls. So I auctioned off my virginity.”

“Oh my god” Eve gasped and Villanelle felt so ashamed but she continued. “I was only 13 and made that very clear and of course a Paedophile bought me. Paid top dollar too. More than I could have conceived of. He was actually alright. 55 year old man who just wanted missionary sex with pretty little girl. He gave me wine. I don’t remember much except that it hurt a lot and then it was over and I could pay the hospital. There were complications though and she needed a second operation. I went back to Paedophile and he told me he had friend who would also pay top dollar. So I had sex with him, and then one of his friends. After I’d done 3 I had a lot of money. Enough to pay for the second operation, for her to stay in hospital and get better. Food and medicine for her. I wanted to stop because I hated being a prostitute. And I was little. It hurt so much, they started wanting more and more things that seemed so frightening and depraved to me and being awake all day caring for Katya and up all night fucking old men would make me cranky with her and she wouldn’t understand. And she was home and seemingly getting healthier by then and had the light back in her eyes again. I just wanted to enjoy her.”

Eve had tears streaming down her face “Sweetheart you were just a little girl and what you were dealing with was unimaginable.”

“I was a whore Eve, an old man’s whore!” Villanelle actually took a bite of her banana and chewed. She felt nauseous. She prayed it would settle her stomach.

“Villanelle you listen to me, those men. Those despicable men are to blame not you. They bought and paid for a little girl that they had the opportunity to help at anytime. They were in the position to help you, to help Katya. To get you help. But they took advantage of your sheer desperation and fear and love for your baby sister. Of the fact that you were a child. It doesn’t matter that you thought you knew what you were doing. You didn’t. But they did. It doesn’t matter that you took their money. You weren’t her sister you were essentially her mother. You did what any mother would have done for her child. But you were only 13.” Carolyn said vehemently and Villanelle looked up at her with huge child like eyes.

“Do you really believe that Carolyn?”

“With every fibre of my being Villanelle. Yes. It wasn’t your fault.”

“And I believe it too. I love you so much baby. So much” Eve assured her while she cried and Villanelle’s lower lip wobbled, mainly just from seeing Eve so upset so she paused. She couldn’t afford to fall apart before she’d finished.

“When Ivan Sokolov approached me I knew who he was. That he was mafia. He made it sound like I had a choice. He offered me a lot of money but I told him the truth. I was exhausted. My body was traumatised and I didn’t wish to offend him I just needed a break. But he wasn’t used to accepting no for an answer. He was a very powerful man. He kidnapped me and raped me for days. It was like torture. He’s a sick, sadistic man who really gets off on pain. He burnt his seal into my leg. He dumped me in the alley near my house when he was done. It was winter and I was unconscious and wearing only what was left of my underwear, beaten and bruised inside and out. If Dimitry hadn’t found me I don’t know what would have happened.

I got taken to hospital. He’d threatened me with the video so I never told them what happened to me. They wouldn’t release me but as soon as I could stand on my own two feet I went home. I could barely walk but I had to look after Katya. When I got home she was coughing quite badly and burning up. I didn’t understand, she was supposed to be getting better. I called the ambulance….but”

Villanelle let out a sob “It was too late. I breathed into her mouth and tried to be her lungs for her even as she turned blue but I couldn’t save her and she died in my arms. My beautiful baby girl. I watched the light in her eyes just die until she was gone. We found out it was a post operation infection. A complication that just happened sometimes with risky surgery on small sick babies.

Villanelle brought her knees up to her chest. ‘She was so little. She must have been so frightened and I wasn’t there. She would have been so confused. She wouldn’t have understood. I wasn’t there because what I did got me in over my head. If I had have been there maybe I could have saved her. Maybe I could have done something.”

Eve couldn’t bear it any longer. She rushed over to Villanelle and dropped to her knees in front of her “Baby no, her lungs just gave out. Her respiratory system was already severely compromised. Her little body just didn’t have any more fight. But she would have died knowing how very loved she was and how lucky she was that you were her big sister. I watched that video. I saw the way she ran to you. The way she looked at you. The way you looked at her. That was a little girl very confident in the knowledge that she was loved and adored by you.”

“I try to tell myself that. Most of the time I’m pretty good at blocking all out. When Anna’s husband Max came home and put his hand up my skirt one afternoon and made his intentions clear I didn’t handle it very well as we all know now because I killed him. He deserved it though and when I was in prison I vowed to get a better handle on things. And I have for the most part. Until I made that throwaway comment about infiltrating the dance studio and I felt like I was on that stupid Disney teacup ride spinning so fast I couldn’t ask to get off and everything has been such a mess. It got harder and harder to block things out. Especially since Katya would be 16 now and after last night with Milton. Everything just came rushing back.”

“So that’s why you killed Max so brutally. And why all Paedophiles meet a particularly grisly end with you” Carolyn mused and Villanelle nodded “But not the first time he did it. The first time I was in shock. I killed him when he tried to force me to have sex, after I’d told Anna about the first time and she asked me why I had to be so difficult, wasn’t it better we appease him so she and I could continue? She would pimp me out to her husband. I have a lot of anger!” she then burst out laughing and Eve looked at Carolyn in concern.

Villanelle’s face suddenly took on an icy resolve “But seeing that video of Katya reminded me why I’m doing this. And that I’m not 13 anymore. I am a very strong and powerful woman and I will make them pay. I’m not even that concerned with Milton. But I’ve wanted to take down Sokolov for 13 years.” Villanelle took the drip out and gently nudged Eve out of the way as she stood up.

“So the question is Carolyn. Can I kill them all and end Sokolov?”

“Sweetheart this is crazy please you’ve just relived unimaginable trauma you need to come home with me and recover!” Eve pleaded

“I know its crazy but I’m a psychopath baby remember? That’s what you called me! And you were right!” Villanelle said with a wink and Carolyn regarded her carefully.

“I don’t think I’ve ever met anyone as deserving of retribution as you Villanelle. Have at it, but keep it tidy. And by tidy I mean we need a clean up crew to be able to clean up without compromising MI6. I’m not telling you the kills have to be clean. Just not sloppily executed!”

“See baby? Carolyn and I understand each other. It’s going to be great!” Villanelle said and Eve wiped her tears away. So worried for Villanelle and where this was going.

“Do you have a plan?” Carolyn asked and Villanelle clapped her hands together “I do. And it is amazing. Even tidy-ish. I left a chemical release bomb in the air vent of Lachlan’s office earlier. I have Sokolov’s phone. He is boss man. Top dog. Tonight I’ll text all the pedos now we have their names and ask them to meet him in the office for cigar. He’ll be late. Tell them to start without him. Men go in. Lock door, remote detonate chemical release, Loud party blocks sound. Gas them all together. Exterminate them like rats. Very painfully though. It’s a particularly nasty compound. But faster than they deserve. It’s just easier. To wipe them all out and have them gone and this over with. For me”

Carolyn was in genuine awe. “That’s absolutely brilliant. And yes, extremely tidy-ish. Bravo. And Sokolov?”

“Is in our shed right here. Antony and a couple of our men are watching him. I have something special planned for him. I have a very special syringe I’ve been keeping on ice for almost 4 years now just in case this day came.” Carolyn smiled “A chemical theme. I like it.”

“Well I go on stage in just over 5 hours. People still expect Talia to appear. Speaking of which I have to go get ready. I want to take out Sokolov on the way to the dance benefit.”

“Do you mind if I sit in and watch? I must say I’m intrigued” Carolyn asked and Villanelle shrugged “Not at all boss lady knock yourself out. I’ll meet you at the shed in 3 hours.”

“Roxie” Eve begged as she took Villanelle’s hand ‘Please don’t shut me out!”

Villanelle forced herself not to be affected by Eve’s plea “Eve please. I have a job to do. And I would never shut you out of this if you want to be there but I would also never pressure you into seeing me do things you may not necessarily want to see. Especially when the way you see me is now so forever changed by what you’ve heard today baby. I’m not your beautiful girl anymore.”

She picked up her bag ‘The shed. 3 hours. Whoever wants in will be there.” And with that she walked out.

Eve went to follow her but Carolyn stopped her “Eve please don’t. She’s fighting valiantly to steel herself to face her worst nightmare and I for one think its exceptional.”

Eve looked at Carolyn completely bereft. “But she thinks she’s not my beautiful girl anymore. And nothing could be further from the truth.”

Carolyn patted Eve on the shoulder awkwardly “There there Eve. There will be plenty of time for you to show her that after tonight. You need to understand that she needs to do this to heal. She cant close the book until that monster is done and those other animals are gone. Don’t you see? What you see as shutting out, to her is clearing room to move forward with you. If she can manage to do that after all she’s endured. Perhaps the two of you need to find a way to meet each other in the middle. I have no doubt how much you love her. And I’m sorry this has been so utterly horrific for you as well.”

“I want to kill him myself. I want to watch him die!” Eve vowed and Carolyn shrugged. “Then perhaps coming with us will be cathartic for you too!”

“But she’s hysterical Carolyn. Like I think she’s on the verge of some kind of mental breakdown. And she needs to fall apart. She needs the right to fall apart” Eve reasoned.

“Perhaps But look at all she’s endured and all that’s been brought up this past fortnight and she hasn’t broken yet. Cracked yes, but she’s standing tall full of resolve and determination. And I will be there to intervene if I feel it is necessary at any point. I don’t think she can fall apart until she takes care of this. I don’t think she will let herself. This is the final chapter of the story. The Endgame”

“I think you’re right!” Eve said thoughtfully and Carolyn looked at her watch. “Eve I’m going to go home and get all my things ready for the ball. I plan to make an appearance at the dance benefit too as I feel Villanelle needs the support and I suggest you go do the same. As for Sokolov, only you can decide if you want to meet us at the shed.

Eve watched as Carolyn left the room and felt her blood run cold as she thought of everything her beautiful precious girl had endured, mostly at the hands of that monster.

“Oh I’ll be there!”

****************************************************

 

Eve and Carolyn stood in the enclosed booth corner of the MI6 interrogation room. Nicknamed the “Shed” a sound proof highly classified section of the building that only certain people had access to. They were both glaring through the window at Ivan Sokolov. He was in his mid 60’s with a fat belly from a life of excess. His complexion was ruddy from too much alcohol and even though he was strapped to a chair at MI6 and had a bloody stump where his index finger had once been, he still sat with an arrogant shit eating grin.

The door swung open and in walked Villanelle looking like a woodland Nymph. Her hair was mostly back to its lighter state though in stripping it some parts had stayed a darker honey than she had before while some were even fairer than she had been giving her a gorgeous mix of blonde highlights. It sat in long soft loose curls with a very ornate expensive thin rose gold and pearl flower crown. She was wearing a fitted deep cream coloured lace off the shoulder midriff top with a pointy pixie-esque lace bottom and a matching floaty high waisted cream chiffon skirt with lace and platinum coloured crystal accents. She looked absolutely stunning.

“Villanelle you look exquisite. Like something straight out of Woodstock!” Carolyn said in approval and Villanelle beamed ‘Thank you Carolyn, this Is actually one of my outfits. I need to be Talia soon but I thought it important to be me for this and we have the ball later so I've kept similar colours throughout the evening's outfits”

‘Yes I’ve noticed your nod to the 70’s in your style. You’ve combined Talia and Villanelle convincingly!”

Eve looked at Carolyn and Villanelle like they were insane. “If you two are finished discussing current fashion trends does anyone have a plan of how to kick this off?”

“Of course I have a plan!” Villanelle scoffed. “Kill Sokolov and speaking of fashion trends, throw out that hideous sweater you’re wearing. Come on everybody its showtime!”

Oh she was in full Villanelle mode Eve realised but that didn’t stop her from grabbing her young lovers hand as she went to walk out after Carolyn.

“I just wanted to tell you that you look so beautiful. I love your hair. And that I love you. You’re still my beautiful girl.”

“Eve please baby not right now!” Villanelle begged her and Eve realised Villanelle needed to keep her game face on. She wouldn’t turn around to look at her. But she did give her hand a little squeeze before she walked out. That was something at least.

Villanelle felt bile rise in her throat as she looked at the source of most of her trauma but sucked it back.

“Well Hi there Ivan long time no see!” She said chirpily and Ivan looked at her in surprise then smiled. “We do not know each other. I would remember such a stunningly beautiful young lady!”

Villanelle looked at Carolyn in mock surprise “Carolyn! He is so charming. Why is he tied up again?” Oh yes that’s right!” She looked back at Ivan and said with a sweet smile “Because I’m going to kill you. I’m sorry to keep you waiting actually. The day really got away from me. So many things to do!”

Ivan looked at her incredulously “You’re not going to kill me! You’re a child. A teenager. A pretty little girl they probably have working here to be honey pot sting playing grown up games!”

“Actually I will be 26 very soon. I bet you don’t think I’m as beautiful now you know that.” Villanelle said and wagged her finger at him playfully like she was admonishing a little boy. “I know all about you!”

Villanelle laughed and then her face lit up “Let’s play a game. You try to figure out how you know me!”

Ivan narrowed his eyes “You’re Russian. 26. Did you go to school with my sons.”

Villanelle shook her head “No I did not. But my friend had some really freaky sex with the older one once in that little rusty tin shed beyond the Rovski Oval. My friend who is a boy”

Ivan look horrified and Villanelle put her hand to her mouth “Oh you didn’t know oldest son likes dick. That’s too bad. You know Ivan you really shouldn’t look so terrified of your queer son its 2018”

“What are you playing at you twisted little bitch?” he asked and Villanelle signed “Now Ivan this is really uncalled for. Have I called you names? Ladies have I been rude to him?”

“Not in the slightest” Carolyn responded and Villanelle shrugged and said. “I go by the name of Villanelle”

Ivan started to lose his bravado and Villanelle smiled “Oh I see that you have heard of me! Wonderful! That’s not how we know each other though. I have another name. Oksana Astankova. Does that ring a bell now?”

Eve’s eyes blazed as Ivan registered the name and he went pale.

“I grew up nice didn’t I? A far cry from the skinny malnourished little poor girl you raped and tortured for days aren’t I!” Villanelle turned sideways excitedly “And look at this? Did you ever think I’d have an epic rack like this? I know I didn’t!”

“What are you going to do to me?” He asked, showing fear for the first time and Villanelle put her hands on her hips “Ivan you are being so rude we are not even done catching up yet. Look! The skin is so smooth on my thigh after the plastic surgery I had! Like magic! Like you never even branded your seal into my skin!” She lifted her skirt and he screamed at her.

‘WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO DO TO ME YOU CRAZY LITTLE BITCH!” He screamed and Villanelle folded her arms and said. “Alright alright if you’re so impatient. I have something very special planned for you.” Villanelle went and took a case out of her bag and opened it to reveal a Syringe.

“This is a very rare and magical chemical compound. Essentially what it will do is fry you from the inside out. Your organs will shut down one by one, you’ll lose your sense of hearing. You’ll go blind. You’ll shit yourself. But you wont lose your sensation. You’ll feel it all until the very end. And it will take days. It will be the most horrific agonising death imaginable I suspect. I saw what remained of somebody who was given this and I don’t even know how to describe it. It wasn’t even a person anymore”

Eve thought she would be horrified seeing Villanelle like this but as she spoke so articulately and stood so poised in front of the monster who had destroyed her, all she felt for her beautiful girl was pride. Pride and admiration.

“That little video I filmed? The one of our time together! I sold it so many times over its all over the internet. You’re a bonafide porn star now you little whore” Ivan spat vindictively and Carolyn regarded Villanelle carefully as she leant in to whisper to Eve. “He knows how deadly she is and that she’s going to kill him so he’s trying to make her lose her temper and kill him quickly”

“Son of a bitch!” Eve cursed

“I know! I only found this out today. And let me tell you it was preeeeeetty upsetting!” Villanelle said with a chuckle and went over to her bag. “But then I remembered I had your phone and I thought, If Ivan has dreams of being internet movie star fucking helpless little girls, why shouldn’t his family share in them. So I sent it to your wife and children. And your brothers and sisters and a bunch of other people”

“NO! NO! NO! NO!” Ivan screamed and Villanelle rolled her eyes “Honestly Ivan you want to be porn star, you don’t want to be porn star, make up your mind!”

Eve let out a little chuckle and Villanelle looked over at her in surprise and when their eyes met she saw the darkness there in her precious darling Eve and they shared a twisted smile.

“That was a very nice touch!” Carolyn remarked biting back a smile of her own and Villanelle smiled “Thank you Carolyn. Honestly I am a big fan of your work, it means a lot that you respect mine”

“You were the prettiest little whore to ever have my cum on her face. And you sucked cock like you were born to do it. Hearing you scream and cry and beg for me to stop while I fucked you over and over again was like music and I don’t know if you remember because I’d beaten you almost unconscious but when I watched you lying in a pool of your own blood I stood over you and told you I was coming after your sister once I’d finished with you.”

Villanelle felt the most blinding hot rage she had ever felt rise within her and she clenched her fist and took very deep breaths. But suddenly out of the corner of her eyes she saw Eve charge forward and slam her flat boot clad foot into his face. She heard the sound of his head hitting the padded headboard, the cracking of bones and then the agonised scream

“Oh Jesus Eve!” Villanelle said in shock At Ivan’s crushed bloody face and watched him spit out a few teeth and then burst out laughing “baby that was amazing” she said as she ran over and spun her around quickly so she wouldn’t see what she’d done.
“I’m going to do it again!’ Eve said but Villanelle stopped her “No no no you could have killed him baby that’s what he wants. This way. Extra painful death. Good job!”

Eve turned to see what was left of Ivan’s face “Oh my god!” She gasped. “I feel a bit sick”

“You’re just in shock baby. The first time you smash someone’s face can look scary. Tell her Carolyn!’

“It does get easier to handle!” Carolyn agreed “Just think of why you did it. Of the things he said to the woman you love.”

“Oh god those things he said about you, about Katya” Eve gasped and Villanelle shook her a little “Listen Eve, its important we tip him over so he doesn’t choke on his blood. He does not deserve to die quickly”

Villanelle half carried/dragged Eve with her one armed as she went to Ivan and pushed his head down so all the blood from his nose and mouth poured onto his lap.

“You see Ivan. Now you’ve gone and pissed off this beautiful incredible woman in my arms. The great love of my life.What’s that meme? Never mess with a woman over the age of 40 because she’s sick and tired of your shit? And she found what you said about me and my sister very upsetting. It’s bad enough she only just found out about Katya today and had to watch the video of us but for you to then say that. She loves me and I have no idea why because I am a complete fuck up you know? But she loves me and as you can see she’s very protective!”

“You’re not a fuck up” Came Eve’s soft voice as she looked up at Villanelle and slipped her hand under her young lovers on Ivan’s neck, holding his head down.

Villanelle looked down at her with so much love and pride she thought she might burst. “That’s my girl. Get all the blood out of his airways. You are so amazing Eve Polastri.” She kissed Eve’s forehead and gestured for Carolyn to come over.

“We won’t be able to gag him Carolyn. I don’t want him choking on his own blood!”

“I’m sorry I wrecked the plan. It was my first time!” Eve apologised and Villanelle let out a little giggle at her strangely cute omission. “Baby don’t be sorry. You were amazing. Ridiculously good first time. I’m so proud of you” She cuddled Eve close and kissed her head as Carolyn reassured Eve.

“It’s a soundproof room Eve. He doesn’t have to be gagged” Villanelle’s eyes took on a twisted look of victory. “You’re right”

Eve pulled herself from Villanelle’s arms and looked at Ivan’s bloody mess of a face. “You’re right Carolyn. Thinking of what he said to her. What he did to her does help!”

She leant in and whispered “You can’t be babysitting me my sweet beautiful girl. You’ve waited a long time for this. I’ll be fine”

Eve walked to stand back a bit and Villanelle looked after her in awe. Once more she had just called her ‘Sweet beautiful girl” like she always did. Even after what she’d seen earlier in the day. Even after what she’d found out. Even after she’d stood there taunting her pray like the twisted psychopathic assassin bitch she was capable of and it was like nothing had changed for Eve in the way she treated her. It was almost her undoing. She had to fight so hard to not run to Eve and collapse in her arms. But she had a job to do

She went and took out the syringe and Carolyn looked at all the blood in distaste ‘Watch your lovely outfit Villanelle!” she warned and Villanelle heeded the warning and crouched beside Ivan so he couldn’t spit blood at her.

“This is the last time I will ever see your face Ivan Sokolov. And I will try very, very hard to forget you as best as I can and I will live a wonderful life. But the last face you will see, is mine. And you will die screaming and alone. But no one will hear you. Just like my sister did when you abducted and tortured me”

Quick as a flash she stood and jammed the syringe into a vein in his neck and he screamed.

“This is for little Roxie!” She said vengefully and then pushed the contents into his neck “And this is for baby Katya!”

Eve’s eyes filled with tears of sadness for what Villanelle had lost and relief that she had finally gotten her moment of reckoning.

Villanelle pulled a photo out of her bust and left it on his lap. “Now die screaming!”

And with that she turned, went and picked up her bag and walked out.

Carolyn picked up the photo and Eve walked over to look at it. It was a picture of Villanelle and Katya cuddled up in a blanket beaming at the camera. Two beautiful little girls who in that particular photo were the picture of happiness and innocence.

Eve took it out of her hands and threw it on his lap ‘Rest in peace babies” she said softly and Carolyn looked at her in confusion.

“Two little girls died that day!” Eve said sadly and Carolyn realised she was right.

Ivan obviously began feeling the effects of the killer cocktail and started screaming just as they opened the door to leave.

“Close the door I don’t want to hear that shit. I am done with him!” Villanelle said from her seated position on the floor against the wall and Eve slammed the door shut.

‘Roxie are you alright?” Eve said as she crouched down beside Villanelle and she sighed “I’m just tired. Normally I’m totally pumped on adrenalin after a kill but I guess it hasn’t kicked in yet. I just feel so tired!” she said as she closed her eyes and rested her head against the cool brick.

“Sweetheart you’ve never had as much wrapped up in a kill as you just had” Villanelle nodded as a lone single tear escaped her closed eyes and rolled down her face.

Eve snaked her arm around her and kissed her forehead “It’s okay baby I’m here!”

Villanelle tried valiantly to stop more teats falling. She pursed her lips together and her chest actually started to heave. “You can let yourself cry if you want to. You need to let it out!”

Villanelle opened her eyes looking completely terrified and shook her head ‘I can’t do it. I can’t do it right now. I have to get to the studio. I have paedophile vermon to kill and a dance that will give me an alibi and keep MI6 out of shit to perform”

She got up and picked up her bag and ran down the corridor.

“Oksana wait!!” Eve called out

“Let her go!” Carolyn commanded. ‘She’ll stop running very shortly I suspect based on what we just saw!’

“I hope you’re right” Eve said hopelessly and Carolyn put an arm around her ‘Come on. You did very well in there Eve. Now let’s go get dollied up and support our girl at that party.”

Chapter Text

Eve stood watching Lachlan Milton leering at Villanelle while he stood with his Peadophile squad. He’d only just finished pawing at her on the dance floor. Natalia and Dimitry had been so furious Carolyn and Konstantin had to whisk them to another corner of the room to stop them blowing her cover.

Villanelle stood chatting to another student when Lachlan suddenly approached from behind, clearly even more tipsy than he had been a few moments earlier when he’d finally left her alone. “I missed my perfect little princess” he said as he pulled her deeper into the dance floor and leant over her shoulder, kissing her cheek. “Come on darling move those sexy little hips for me like I know you can.” Villanelle could feel her skin crawl. She was glad she couldn’t see him. Just having his hands on her was enough”

“Lachie be careful, people can’t know about us because of my age” she warned him and Lachlan laughed “Always my diligent little girl!” He put his hands on Villanelle’s shoulders and skimmed them down her arms so firmly he pushed the off the shoulder sleeves of her top down and she nearly revealed a whole lot more than she planned. She put her hand to her chest just in time and spun around to look at him “You are drunk Lachie be careful” she spat in her perfect Talia English accent and then stormed off.

“Princess don’t be like that! Have I mentioned how much I love the blonde hair?” he called after her laughing and Eve just wanted to kick his face in as she had done Ivan’s as she watched the scene in front of her.

She discretely followed Villanelle in the direction she had gone and watched as she walked down a corridor which looked to be set up as dressing rooms and went into a room at the end of it.

Villanelle unzipped her top at the back deciding she would pin it then remembered she can’t get the top on independently “Idiot! Can this day get any worse” she cursed herself and then looking at the chocolate box dessert she’d swiped earlier she stuck a spoon in it and put it to her mouth. She had barely eaten for two weeks but her love for sweets never left her.

She jumped at the knock at the door and reached for her knife.

“Roxie its just me!” Came Eve’s voice and Villanelle sighed in relief then her eyes widened in surprise. She went to the locked door and opened it.

Eve broke into an adoring smile. Even looking a bit rattled with a spoon hanging from her mouth and what looked like chocolate on her chin she was still the most beautiful woman she had ever seen. “Hey my beautiful girl. Can I come in?” Villanelle took the spoon out of her mouth and swallowed her cake as she opened the door and allowed Eve to come in.

Villanelle locked the door and Eve saw her top hanging open at the back ‘I saw what just happened Roxie are you alright?”

Villanelle nodded ‘I am, but I almost lost my top and flashed the entire room so I thought I’d come here and pin it. Then I realised I can’t get it zipped back up without help. Which just fitted in perfectly with the super awesome day I am having. So I decided to eat cake’

“It’s okay Sweetheart. I’ll help you!” Eve said as she located Villanelle’s box of dancer essentials on the table and found a couple of safety pins.

“You were right. I think my tits have shrunk!” Villanelle said quietly and Eve cupped her face “That’s okay my love. You’ve been under tremendous traumatic stress. We’ll get through tonight and then we’ll get you better. And you’re still absolutely gorgeous. I’m relieved to see you eating if only a little though!”

“I can think of something I’d absolutely love to eat” Villanelle said suggestively as her eyes went up and down the length of Eve in the slinky navy blue one shouldered evening gown she’d bought her that suited her delicate frame and ivory skin so beautifully. “Do you have any idea how stunning you look baby?” she asked and Eve grinned at her. Even completely shell shocked, her love was still such an incorrigible little shit “Thank you Roxie, turn around!”

Villanelle pouted and turned around. Eve zipped the midriff top up and folded it over, Carefully pinning the beautiful young woman into it. “Will Dimitry get this off you when you change? Did you want me to come with you?”

“No thank you. My outfit is side stage. Someone will help me. You can stay in the audience and watch me if you want. I’ve actually decided to dance by myself. I like to dance what I feel and sexy routine with Dimitry wasn’t what I was feeling”

“That’s more than understandable!” Eve said gently as she turned Villanelle back to face her. “And I couldn’t even convince you of sexy just then so it was probably a wise choice” she said sadly and Eve was aghast that Villanelle would think that.

“No sweet baby. I want you as much as I always have. But you’re drowning in pain at the moment and wanting to use sex to run from it. And you’re fragile and vulnerable. I wont be like those people. Like Ivan, Anna. I won’t take advantage of your vulnerability, of you being lost at the moment and use you, no matter he beautiful your face or your body is. Because I love you and its my job to keep your heart safe. Because that’s what you do when you love someone. ”

Eve spoke with so much conviction and emotion her voice quivered. Villanelle was completely overwhelmed. She had to look away. No one she had been romantically or intimately involved with had ever loved her like that. Loved her so much that they would put her first.

“And I’m not going to ask you to let me in or to talk to me because I understand now that you need to get through this night. That you have a job to do and you can’t fall apart. But I hope that when it’s all done you know you can come to me and that I will be your soft place to fall!”
Villanelle took a deep breath. She couldn’t believe the things she was hearing or how amazing Eve was. What had she ever done to deserve someone so incredible. She really did understand her. She really did let her be herself. As complicated and fucked up as she was.

“I will tell you this!” Villanelle began softly in a shaky voice “I’ve never been that good at feelings. I know I’m still learning. But what I’m feeling right now is so big and so overwhelming I just want to get it out of me but I’m so scared that If I let it out and I fall apart….that I won’t be able to stop!”

Eve bit her lip to stop the tears from coming. “I know sweetheart!” she said as she very tenderly wiped the chocolate from her young lover’s chin and turned her face to look into her beautiful face. She knew when the flood gates finally opened it would be a doozy.

“But you will stop eventually. And I’ll be right there with you. I’ll be your soft place to fall! I promise I’ll catch you!”

Villanelle smiled in spite of herself as she placed her hands under the smaller woman’s arms and lifted her up so she could press her forehead to hers. “I hope you’ve been working out my little doll!” both women giggled and Villanelle hugged Eve tightly.

‘I’ll be alright. I just need to hold you and smell your amazing hair for a moment!” Villanelle whispered sincerely and Eve snuggled into her embrace. “Take all the time you need!”

After a little while Villanelle reluctantly let Eve go and placed her back on the ground. “It’s show time!” she said confidently as though the act of holding Eve had completely re-centred her. She took Ivan Sokolov’s phone and copy pasted the text she’d prepared earlier to Lachlan and the other 5 paedophiles. When it was sent she looked into the mirror and began pinning half her hair back softly off her face with two ornate pearl covered clips.

“After I dance I will be leaving straight from backstage. Don’t come looking for me. Talia needs to just disappear. I will meet you at the ball. I promise. I have to go now baby!”

She turned to face Eve and kissed her forehead but Eve stood up on her tippy toes and pressed the sweetest, most tender kiss to Villanelles lips. “Please be safe my beautiful girl!”

“Roxie!” Eve called as Villanelle went to leave. “You said you weren’t dancing the sexy routine. What are you dancing?”

Villanelle opened the door and looked over her shoulder at Eve a little nervously “Victoria. The Red shoes.”

*************************************************************
Villanelle lifted her skirt and reached for the remote detonation device attached to the holster she wore on her right thigh. The music coming from the party was so loud she couldn’t even hear if all the men had gathered inside Lachlan’s office but she saw Antony step out of the shadows and give her the thumbs up.

When she looked down at her hand it was shaking. But still, she pressed the magic button “Die you animals”. The effects of the gas worked almost instantly. By the time she reached the door a few of them were coughing. She took the key attached to the keyring on the detonation device and locked the door.

“Could they bang it down?” she asked Antony and he laughed “No Bella. They’ll be blind in about 30 seconds.”

Antony hadn’t even finished his sentence before she heard them begin to scream. She took the speaker she’d left in the corner and turned it on. It was connected to the others around the party and played the same music.

“Its almost over isn’t it?” Villanelle realised and Antony squeezed her hand ‘It sure is. You can go if you want. I’m happy to stay here!”

Villanelle shook her head as tears filled her eyes. “No. I wanna be here till the end!”

*********************************************************
Eve, Carolyn, Konstantin, Dimitry and Natalia had all congregated near the stage as the first series of performances was about to begin and Villanelle was up first as “Talia”.

“Do we even know what dance she is doing now?” Natalia asked in bewilderment. Dimitry shrugged and Eve remembered what Villanelle had told her. “I asked her a little while ago and she said ‘Victoria. The red shoes’ I just wasn’t sure what it meant.” Dimitry’s eyes went wide and he and Natalia exchanged a look. Even Carolyn and Konstantin shared a look.

“What is it? What’s with all these knowing glances” Eve asked.

“The red shoes is a famous ballet based on a fairytale by Hans Christian Anderson. In the climax of the ballet, the main character who has been torn between her love for ballet and devotion to her lover, feeling like she has to make the impossible choice between the two, loses her lover when she chooses to dance in ‘the red shoes’. Realising what she is giving up she flees to find him and is hit by a train” Carolyn replied.

“It is an extremely intense and emotional piece. One of the most emotionally demanding actually. To portray the grief, the fear, the confusion and being so completely and utterly lost” Natalia added.

“The only dancers who ever pull it off are the ones who get up there, rip their own heart and lose their fucking mind on stage” Mused Dimitry and Natalia squeezed his hand.

“And now ladies and gentleman. We are pleased to introduce of our most talented senior students. Miss Talia Petrov dancing “Victoria” from the red shoes.

Villanelle stood side stage and took a deep breath. Everything was catching up to her. She actually felt light headed. But as the opening strains of Tchaikovsky played she entered the stage and began.
“Wow she looks beautiful but so….stripped back” Dimitry said as he took in the little white baby doll dance dress she wore which was fitted at her chest with a single ruffle along the neckline, tied at her shoulders in little white bows then just lightly skimmed the rest of her body ending at her upper thighs in floaty panels of fabric and she wore a bright red lipstick that matched her bright red ballet shoes.

Eve’s heart felt like it was in her throat. Villanelle was exquisite. The way she looked. Her attire so simple, raw and organic. The way she moved so gracefully. But she looked so lost and alone. All she wanted to do was wrap her beautiful girl up tight in her arms and keep her safe.

Villanelle let everything wash over her. The childhood she’d lost, the abuse she’d suffered, the memories that had come rushing back the past couple of weeks and soon tears where streaming down her face and her movements became more frantic and emotive. Soon there was no audience. No lights, no character. Just her and her pain. The horrific lump inside her that had been threatening to come out inside her and it was coming. It was happening and she couldn’t stop it. She could only dance.

“Oh my darling!” Natalia said as she reached her hand out, as though she could touch and comfort Villanelle.

“Jesus. This is absolutely gut wrenching. And incredible” Dimitry said in awe as Villanelle completely disintegrated on stage yet her technique stayed near perfect.

“Come here little whore!”, “Woxie! Woxie where are you!” Voices, all the voices in her head as Villanelle turned and turned more furiously in a frenzied series of pirouettes and leaps. She was sobbing now but still she danced. Katya, her beautiful perfect little Katya, dead and blue in her arms.

Konstantin saw Eve with tears running down her face and put an arm around her. She didn’t speak. She just stood transfixed watching Villanelle.

The music reached its crescendo and Villanelle moved from one stage to the other, barely even able to see through all of her tears. Eve, her darling precious Eve, Eve having to see what happened to her, to know what she’d done with those aweful men. Eve who might decide she didn’t want her anymore and why would she? Why would she want her after all she knew. She was so stupid to ever believe she could be loved. That she knew how to do this with someone. Someone as amazing as Eve.

As the frenzied classical strings reached its final fever pitch climax she ran and leapt high in grand jete with all her might then as she landed, turned to the audience, flung her arms up back and thrust her body forward as she gave them one final agonised glance and then she collapsed to the ground, Her hair covering her face and her chest still heaving with sobs as she gasped for breath.

There was absolute silence for a moment and then the crowd erupted in applause and cheers.
“Best fucking red shoes I’ve ever seen!” Dimitry said as he wiped his tears away and Natalia dabbed her eyes with a tissue. “She was magnificent!”

Villanelle didn’t take a bow. She simply lay there as the curtains closed. Eve went to go to her but Konstantin stopped her “Eve don’t”

“I need to be with her!” Eve said desperately as she wiped her tears and Konstantin shook his head “ That’s not what she wants or what’s best for the operation. She’s going to disappear remember?”

“Konstantin is right. Come on Eve. Lets go to the ball. She will meet us there when she’s ready!” Carolyn agreed and Eve nodded, feeling helpless. She could have sworn that even Carolyn’s eyes looked glassy with tears.

****************************************************************

Villanelle walked through the door of the ballroom hoping she looked alright. She felt utterly shell shocked. She had never fallen apart in her entire adult life like she had on that stage and it had taken her an hour to “de puff” her eyes. She’d covered the redness with makeup and decided it would have to do. The ball was the very last thing she wanted to be at but she’d promised Eve. She’d chosen a slinky blush coloured lace high necked halter dress that clasped at the back of her neck in a thick band of lace with a row of little pearl buttons. It then plunged extremely low at the back to just above her ass making it backless. Her curls had been softly swept into a chic “up do. She had paired it with Diamond and pearl drop earrings, a matching cuff and a pair of sky high blush coloured Loboutins.

“I just wanted you to know that was without a doubt the most compelling ballet solo I have ever seen!”

Villanelle turned to see Carolyn standing just behind her. “I saw you walk in!” She said as she handed Villanelle a glass of champagne.

“Thank you Carolyn!” Villanelle said gratefully as she took the glass and began drinking it.

“Villanelle you’re young. And impulsive. You still have some things to learn. But what you managed to accomplish in this mission under extremely difficult and traumatic circumstances has been nothing short of exceptional. You have shown strength, instincts and skills well beyond your years and experience. You have done MI6 proud. You have done me proud. I am very proud of you.” Villanelle looked down and said “I’m used to telling myself I’m amazing. I’m not so used to having someone I have a lot of respect for saying it. So I don’t really know what to say except maybe…”

She looked up at her boss and gave her a little smile “Thank you. It does mean a lot to me. That you said that. And you were there this afternoon and tonight!”

“Yes well, I’m not used to saying things like that so that makes two of us! Cheers!” Carolyn said as she held her glass up and clinked it to Villanelle’s ‘Cheers Carolyn!”

Carolyn put a hand on her shoulder ‘We’re at table 22. Avoid Hugo, he’s already three sheets to the wind and more irritating than usual!”

Villanelle dropped her clutch off at Table 22 and walked aimlessly through the crowd of people in search of Eve.

Eve stood talking to Jess and suddenly caught sight of an extremely statuesque blonde with her back to them from a distance. She looked like something right out of a fashion magazine even from the back. And as she looked at the way she was standing and the line of her spine her breathing quickened a little. Suddenly as though she sensed eyes on her, the young woman turned around and it was Villanelle.

“Oh my god” Eve gasped aloud as the took in the sight of her young lover. Her beauty in that moment was so utterly exquisite and flawless she looked positively ethereal. She was literally a supermodel.

Villanelle gave her a little wave and Eve squeezed Jess’s arm before walking across the dance floor. When she was standing in front of her love she looked her up and down. She stood at over 6 feet tall in her heels

“Do you have any idea how breathtakingly beautiful you look right now Roxie? And very, very tall!”

Villanelle smiled a little shyly and though Eve had been used to cocky Villanelle and was so worried about her beautiful girl she had to admit this shyer more self-conscious side of her she’d been displaying the past couple of weeks was incredibly endearing. It made her so grateful she’d been able to crack Villanelle’s tough as nails exterior to discover the softness and humanness inside.

“Your dance was the most incredible thing I have ever seen. I was so proud of you!” Eve said sincerely as she took Villanelle’s hand and threaded their fingers together.

“I feel I got a little carried away by things that have happened. But I don’t ever do things by halves!” She joked and Eve chuckled. “No you don’t my love. How do you feel?”

Villanelle looked genuinely perturbed. “I feel puffy. My eyes burn. I feel kind of sick in the stomach and every now and then my breath kind of catches in my throat involuntarily and I have to steady myself. And I feel very weak. Physically!”

“Well that sounds about right for a big emotional meltdown!” Eve said gently and Villanelle looked blank “I wouldn’t know. I’ve never done it before. I don’t like it. Does it happen every time?”

Eve felt her heart breaking for the young woman who was clearly genuinely bewildered and had never been able to break down and grieve for all she had suffered. “Pretty much. It becomes less confronting and overwhelming though when you’ve done it a few times. Apart from the burning eyes and feeling a bit sick. That’s pretty much a staple unfortunately”

“Yuck that’s the worst part!” Villanelle said as she scrunched her face up and Eve looked at her in total adoration. “You know, you’re pretty adorable sometimes Astankova”

“I know!” Villanelle said emphatically as she put her empty champagne glass on a passing waiter’s tray and took another two, handing Eve one.

“This party is boring. Let’s find somewhere to have sex!” Villanelle said as she looked around unappreciatively and Eve put her hand on her arm “We’ll just stay a little while and then we’ll go! You need to talk to me about some things!”

‘I’m talking to you right now!” Villanelle reasoned as she downed her entire champagne glass in virtually one gulp.

“You know what I mean Beautiful girl!” Eve said and Villanelle winced. “Don’t call me that! I’m not your beautiful girl. I know you want to cling to it still for me because you are the most incredible woman in the world but I don’t deserve it!”

“I say it because that’s what you are. Because I love you. I will always love you!” Eve explained calmly and Villanelle took her by the shoulders and bent closer to her level “Why? Why do you love me? I can assure you I am an extremely unlovable person!”

Eve took a deep breath and closed her eyes. Just willing herself to stay calm.

‘What are you doing?” Villanelle asked in confusion and still Eve didn’t answer “Eve what are you doing?”

“I am willing myself to remember that as much as you present yourself as a bad ass super stylish sophisticated assassin and hardened woman of the world, underneath it all you’re a very traumatised 25 year old young woman who has been through unimaginable pain and had that pain dragged up in the past fortnight and been forced to re-live it and my 42 year old far more life experienced ass needs to be calm and patient and not slap you just because I am so frustrated that the person I love more than anyone I have ever loved in my whole life won’t talk to me about what’s going on inside of her.”

When Eve opened her eyes they were full of frustration and Villanelle didn’t know what to say. “You can slap me if you want. I know how hard I’ve made things for you. I won’t be mad and I won’t hit you back. You are the most important thing to me. I would never hurt you!”

Eve groaned at the sincerity of her sentiment. “You know you drive me crazy sweetheart don’t you?”

Villanelle looked down and nodded and Eve reached up to cup her beautiful face. “Come on, dance with me!” Villanelle followed Eve onto the dance floor and her petite love into her arms very gently and tenderly. Eve found herself melting and rested her hand on the young woman’s back

 

Pull back the shield between us,
And I'll kiss you,
Drop your defences and come,
Into my arms.
I'm all for believing,
I'm all for believing if you can reveal the true colours within.

 

“I don’t mean to cause you pain by doubting you baby. I am very sorry for all of this. My behaviour. The way I am. The way I shut down. It’s just not hard for me to believe you would wash your hands of me when no one has ever wanted me.

Her confession tore at Eve’s heart and she rubbed Villanelle’s back as they gently swayed to the music. “I do Roxie. My beautiful girl. I want you. And you don’t get to say you aren’t my beautiful girl. You don’t decide that. I decide. And that’s exactly what you are. Nothing that has happened, nothing that I have found out has changed that alright?”

Villanelle’s lower lip quivered a little and she pursed them tightly and nodded.

I know you blanket your mind
So much that I am blind,
But I, I see you've painted your soul
Into your guard,
I'm all for believing,
(I'm all for believing)

 

Eve looked at her with eyes full of pleading“ You think this is about pity? This isn’t about pity. This is about you coming back to keep me safe and look after me when I was attacked even after I stabbed you and not leaving my side for a second when I needed you. This is about all the times you comforted me when I’d have nightmares and held me tight so I could fall asleep. The way you were so incredible, patient and understanding the first time we were intimate. The way you pick me up in your arms like I am the most precious thing you’ve ever held in them. The lunches dinners and treats you make me just to see me smile. The way you protect me at all costs without thinking about it, just instinctively. This is about you being trapped in a moment this afternoon that must have been so horrific and bittersweet for you I can’t even begin to comprehend it but dropping everything to protect me, to reassure me, to support me because of something I’d done. It was your moment but your first thought was me. You ask me why I love you Oksana? How could I not love you?”

“It’s because you are cherie” Villanelle said softly as a single tear slid down her cheek. “Apart from Katya you are the most precious thing I have ever held in my arms”

 

I need to know just how you feel,
To comfort you;
I need to find the key let me in,
Into your heart,
To find your soul.

 

“Oh Roxie. My beautiful sweet complex girl” Eve said as she rubbed her hand up and down Villanelle’s back.

“I love you so much. I will try to get better at the talking about my feelings. I’m so frightened. I’ve never felt anything like this before for anyone. I’ve never had so much on the line. Apart from Katya I’ve never been so scared of losing someone in my life. I know you feel like I shut you out but please believe I have let you in more than anyone ever.”

“I know sweetheart shhhhhhh” Eve did what she could to comfort her. “I know you’re scared. But I’m here. I got you! It’s my turn to protect you for a change. To wrap you up safe and tight when you’re hurting. And I know it’s hard for you, but you need to let me. You need to tell me when you need help ”

 

Pull back the shield between us,
And I'll kiss you,
Drop your defenses and come,
Into my arms.

 

“Alright. I will try very hard to stop pushing you away and talk to you about things more.” Villanelle promised and Eve took the young woman’s hand in her own and kissed it. “Thank you. And I will be here by your side helping you learn!”

“I believe you!” Villanelle said vehemently as she pulled Eve into a hug, holding her tightly against her as they continued to move to the music.

 

I'm all for believing, if you can reveal, the true colours within,
And say you will be there for me to hold,
When the faith grows old and life turns cold, (I'm all for believing)

 

“I wish I wasn’t so short and you weren’t so tall in those heels. I hate being so far away from you right now” Eve said regretfully and gasped as she was suddenly thrust up to eye level with Villanelle. Villanelle wrapped an arm around Eve’s waist and one around her upper back, holding her to her own body securely. “Is this better ma petit Cherie?” Villanelle asked her with such a look of adoration in her eyes that Eve didn’t know if the shiver of delight that ran through her was from that or the french term of endearment she often used with so much tenderness and affection.

“This is perfect!” Eve said as she wrapped her arms around Villanelle’s neck and snuggled into her shoulder as her beautiful girl swayed with her in her arms.

 

So if you're cold I will stay, maybe fate will guide the way.
I believe in what I see and baby we were meant to be,
Just believe. Just believe. Just believe.
Trust in me.

 

When the song ended Villanelle still held Eve tightly in her arms and winced as she felt the pain of her pointe shoe damaged feet in her heels. She was going to such it up but instead she took a deep breath. “Baby it is very bad to wear brand new pointe shoes for anything much less a vigorous performance but I needed red shoes. I’ve kind of shredded my feet. I need to go home and get off them and clean them up properly. I’m very sorry to cut the night short but would you please come with me. I don’t want to be by myself.”

Eve bit her lip to stop herself from crying as she realised Villanelle had heard her. She was letting her in, as best as she could. She wasn’t shutting her out. She pulled back to look at her beautiful girl. “Of course sweetheart. I’m so sorry I didn’t realise you were hurt. I don’t know much about ballet.”

Villanelle reluctantly put Eve on her feet and chuckled. “I can teach you. Come on, let’s go get our things and go back to yours. I just want to be in our bubble away from everyone.” Villanelle put her arm around Eve and she snuggled into the taller woman’s side as they walked back to their table, feeling so relieved she was finally getting through.

*****************************************************************
Villanelle sat on the bed, both her feet covered in bandaids and bandages. Eve had been absolutely horrified by the state of her feet, rubbed raw of all its skin in some parts and bleeding when she took them out of her heels. She’d tried to tell Eve this was standard for overdoing it en pointe and she’d had worse but Eve had insisted on staying with her while she soaked them and helped her apply antiseptic and bandage them. It was nice. With the exception of Natalia when she was much younger, no one had ever helped her do that before.

“Here sweetheart!” Eve’s voice startled her out of her reverie as she was handed a glass of wine. “Thank you baby!” she replied sweetly as she took the glass and Eve smiled at her adoringly. Only her beautiful girl could look so lovely in a simple lavender coloured oversized t shirt that hung off one slim shoulder and skimmed the tops of her thighs.

She knelt on the bed beside Villanelle and began kissing her neck gently. Encouraged by her soft moans she whispered “Roxie, I really want to be with you tonight baby. And I understand if after everything you’ve been through you can’t. We can stop at any time. Just try to let me inside okay?”

“Finally! I have been trying to fuck you since this morning my darling Eve!” Villanelle teased as she stood and went to her “toy box” pulling out an assortment of dildos, a harness, a small flogger and some restraints. Eve watched as her young lover practically skulled her glass of wine. She wanted her present in the moment. Placing her own glass on the bedside table she went over and took Villanelle’s “Put the toys down baby. No toys or games tonight. Just us!”

Villanelle put the toys down in confusion but allowed herself to be taken by the hand and led back to the bed. “Up you get. That’s my good girl” Eve said in approval as Villanelle sat in the middle of the bed and crossed her legs. She wasn’t sure what was happening. It sure sounded like Eve was in “top” mode yet she didn’t want any toys and there was something extra gentle and nurturing in her manner at that moment. Eve could see the bewilderment all over the young woman’s face and she knew she needed to tread carefully and cautiously. And going into top space was one way she knew she might be able to get Villanelle to let down her guard and let her in.

Eve took Villanelle’s hands in hers “I want you to remember your safe word and to use it if you need to stop. Because this might hurt a little”

Villanelle rolled her eyes “Eve I’m pretty sure I can fuck and ravage you without using a safe word”

“I’m not talking about fucking sweetheart I’m talking about making love!” Eve said with a conviction that stole Villanelle’s dismissive bravado all of a sudden and she regarded Eve curiously as she took off the lilac t shirt she wore, leaving her in only a pair of grey silk and lace panties and then took off the black shirt she wore herself.

“Come here sweet baby” Eve said softly as she moved to sit against the headboard and gestured for Villanelle to sit beneath her legs with her back to her and lean against her chest.

“You feel so good!” Eve said as she ran her hands up and down Villanelle’s arms trying to get her to relax. “Look at how stunning you are, My beautiful girl. So pretty baby!” Eve began kissing her young lovers neck as she gently traced a perfect rosy nipple with her finger. “Who do you belong to ?” she asked and Villanelle moaned “You Eve, I belong to you!”

“Good girl!” Eve cooed as Villanelle writhed in her arms. ‘Such a good girl for me. So beautiful, you make me so proud” She gently turned Villanelle in her arms and slid down onto the pillows so they were lying face to face and began placing the most delicate, featherlight kisses all over the young woman’s beautiful face before landing on her lips and kissing her like she was made of porcelain.

Villanelle was completely overwhelmed. Eve was being so exquisitely gentle and tender with her, saying such beautiful things to her. No one had ever treated her like this sexually. It was so lovely but so terrifying at the same time. So different to what she’d been through, to all the horrific memories she’d been reliving that she could barely process it.

“Sweetheart you’re trembling!” Eve said in concern as she registered Villanelle shaking in her arms. “I’m alright” Villanelle lied and Eve brushed her beautiful honey locks back from her forehead and placed a kiss on each of her eyelids. “No you’re not just alright. You’re everything. You’re my everything.” Eve said as her hand slid down to her panties and Villanelle braced herself for fingers plunging inside her depths but all Eve did was untwist the side of them that was causing the elastic to cut in and rub her hand tenderly along her hip

“My beautiful sweet girl!” Eve whispered like it was poetry as she planted the sweetest little row of kisses along Villanelle’s collar bone and suddenly the young woman couldn’t breathe. It was too much. She couldn’t take it.

“Stoy!” she cried out, using their safe word and covering her eyes with the palms of her hands as she burst into tears. “I’m scared, I don’t know how to do this. You were right, it hurts!” she gasped as her whole body was wracked with sobs.

“Shhhhhh it’s alright sweetheart I’ve got you” Eve said as she wrapped Villanelle up tight in her arms. “You’ve held it in for so long. You’ve been so strong. Just let it all go!” Eve encouraged her as she smoothed away the hair plastered to Villanelle’s tear soaked cheeks.
“My beautiful, amazing brave girl”

“I…..L…Love y…you! I can’t do it t…tonight I’m s…sorry!” Villanelle could barely get out in between sobs and Eve rocked her beautiful girl in her arms “I love you too sweet baby. So very much. You don’t have to do it. You don’t have to do anything that frightens you or hurts you. You’ve got nothing to be sorry for. It’s alright. You’re safe, I’ve got you. And I will never, ever leave you.” Villanelle cried even harder at that and Eve had tears streaming down her own face. She continued to rock her and do what she could comfort her with gentle kisses and whispered sweet nothings. But as relieved as she was that Villanelle had finally let go, each one of her beautiful girl’s cries tore at her soul.

***************************************

Villanelle had cried for just over an hour and then after a little while her cries had quietened and Eve noticed she had cried herself to sleep in her arms. Finally. She had finally managed to break down the barrier between herself and her severely traumatised little love. And Villanelle, she had finally let her in.

Gently disentangling herself from her sleeping lover, Eve went and got a luke-warm wash cloth then brought it back to the bed. Taking Villanelle in her arms again she gently pressed it to her face, soothing her reddened skin and wiping away the traces of hot tears.

Villanelle whimpered in her sleep and Eve pressed her lips to her forehead “Shhhhh I’m right here my love” she reassured her as she continued to gently dab at her face with the cloth. Villanelle’s eyes fluttered open ever so delicately to peer up at her and Eve was stunned by how bright and green they were. “How is it possible for you to still look so incredibly beautiful after breaking down like that?” Eve asked in total wonder and Villanelle eyed her self consciously. “My face feels very big. Is it big?” she whispered, almost like it was a secret and Eve couldn’t help but chuckle at how cute she was. “No sweet baby your face isn’t big. It’s face sized!”

Villanelle gently toyed with one of Eve’s curls “Eve. I don’t think I can tonight. It’s not that I don’t want you. I don’t quite know what’s happened to me”

“Shhhhhh. You’re just wounded my beautiful girl. You don’t have to do it tonight, or tomorrow or even for the next few months if you’re not ready. Healing takes time” Eve reassured her and Villanelle scrunched her face up in disapproval “Yeah okay let’s not get too crazy” Eve giggled and soon they were both giggling.

“Roxie it means the world to me that you trust me enough to admit that to me. To let yourself be this vulnerable to me. I know it isn’t easy for you. And I know I’m pushy and annoying, like you call me. Your annoyance right”

Villanelle felt a lump in her throat as tears filled her eyes “I lied to you Eve!” Eve cupped her face “Hey…what do you mean you lied to me?” Villanelle wiped her tears away. “I lied to you that first night I came into your house to protect you after you were attacked when you asked me what Мое сердце meant.”

“It doesn’t mean my annoyance?” Eve asked in confusion and Villanelle shook her head “No. It means ‘my heart’ and I lied to you because the words slipped out so effortlessly. Like breathing. And it scared me. And I didn’t want to scare you. And I was so afraid of just not being enough so I lied. But I should have been brave. I should have believed in what I already knew, what you’ve shown me so many times, especially tonight. Just how special you are. And that you really are Мое сердце. You are my heart. I mean you’re really annoying sometimes too but you are my heart always.”

Eve felt her own eyes fill with tears and as she pressed her forehead against her beautiful complicated girls their tears mingled together. She couldn’t even begin to put into words how touched or moved she was by Villanelle’s confession “Oh Sweetheart. I love you so much. You are so utterly precious.” She whispered as she stroked Villanelle’s hair. “You just do things in your own time. And you’re not the only one still learning about feelings. Maybe we could teach each other”

“Like the blind leading the blind” Villanelle asked and Eve chuckled. “No….more like the dark leading the dark!”

“Because we are the same” Villanelle said sleepily as exhaustion overtook her once more and Eve continued stroking her hair silently then pulled back a little to peer at the almost sleeping angel in her arms.

“Roxie….you can’t fall asleep just yet sweetheart”

“Mmm” Villanelle mumbled.

“I forgot to tell you you’re my heart always too” Eve wasn’t sure if her lover had drifted too far to hear her confession. But then she smiled and snuggled more deeply into her protective embrace.

Eve kissed her head and held her tightly.

“Always”

Chapter Text

Eve woke up to the heavenly aroma of breakfast wafting into her bedroom. She sat up in bed and saw the note sitting beside her that read “I was so hungry and you looked so beautiful that I watched you sleep for a while baby and only left you when I couldn’t bare it any longer. Come down to breakfast when you’re ready. I love you”

Eve smiled in delight as she read the sweet little note Villanelle had left her. She was so relieved her beautiful girl wanted to eat something. She honestly had no idea what state she would find her love in after the events of the previous evening but all she wanted was to spend the weekend wrapped in each others arms and hopefully getting Villanelle to open up to her a little more.

Putting her robe on quickly she headed down to the kitchen to find her beautiful girl standing at frying pan holding a piece of lightly toasted bread like a burrito with what seemed to be a little poached egg and tomato inside it. She’d obviously already showered as her hair sat in a heavenly halo of long tousled damp honey strands and she was wearing the loosest fitting ensemble Eve had ever seen her in. A pair of deep rose pink with a touch of lilac coloured Ted baker sweat pants and a matching sweat top that said “Wake me for champagne”. She still looked a little expensive as she seemed to have a knack for doing even in sweats but the ensemble seemed to hide her lithe and recently shrunken frame.

“Hi baby” Villanelle said as she spotted Eve and beamed at her. Eve’s face lit up. Her beautiful girl. She was so gorgeous, but still looked incredibly fragile.

“Good morning sweetheart!” Eve said as she went to Villanelle and kissed her. She smelled incredible and as desire began to fill her Eve deepened the kiss and her movements became more aggressive. She felt Villanelle tense completely as her tongue entered her young lover’s mouth. But rather than pulling away completely she simply chastened the kiss and when it broke she placed a gentle little kiss on her cheek. Then just as she had done the night before, she slipped into top mode. “Sweet baby. You smell like peaches. And your hair has gotten so long. I love it so much” Eve said as she toyed with the strands that sat well below her breasts. “Then I won’t cut it” Villanelle said earnestly and Eve bit back the arousal that flooded her at the natural submission Villanelle seemed to display with her. Her beautiful fragile girl was struggling and she needed to be careful. One thing she knew though was that Villanelle absolutely basked in her approval.

“Youre so beautiful sweetheart you’d be gorgeous no matter what you did with your hair. If you decide to cut it cut it. But I’m really grateful you consider my opinion” Eve said sincerely then looked at the spread. “And look at this incredible breakfast you’ve made for us!”

Villanelles face lit up as she put her toast burrito down and lifted Eve up to sit on the counter. “I wasn’t sure what you would want so I made a few things!”

“It’s amazing Roxie!” Eve said as she pulled Villanelle between her legs. “You’re such a good girl. You make me so proud!” She said adoringly as she toyed with the sleeve of Villanelle’s sweat top. “Is this your usual size? I don’t usually see you in clothes this big?” Eve asked and as Villanelle wrapped her arms around her waist and looked down at her body self- consciously Eve instantly kicked herself for questioning her love’s clothing choice, remembering what she’d read. That victims of sexual assault often favoured loose and oversized clothing.

“Oh…I suppose you haven’t….um..” Villanelle stammered but Eve put her fingers up to her beautiful lips and cut her off. “ The colour makes your eyes look fiercely green. You look so snuggly and cosy. You’re dressed perfectly for cuddling!”

Villanelle relaxed visibly “’That would be lovely. Breakfast then cuddles?”

Eve kissed her nose ‘Sounds perfect beautiful girl”

************************************

 

Eve looked at Villanelle’s reflection through the mirror in concern as her beautiful girl lovingly brushed out her ebony curls after her shower. She’d eaten toast heaped with egg, mushroom, tomato and spinach at breakfast and explained she’d thrown up the chocolate box she’d eaten the night before as well as the wine and she’d love to eat the pancakes Eve was tucking into but she knew from experience that whenever she’d had periods with little food she was better off lining her stomach with more natural plainer foods first.

“Sweetheart do you think we should take you to a doctor. You’ve been through quite the ordeal. And what about work do you think you should take some time off?”

“I spoke to Carolyn before you woke up baby!” Villanelle said as she combed out Eve’s curls. “She said she needed me to at least take the next fortnight on enforced mental health leave. I didn’t fight her because I think she’s right. I’m not fit to be taking on any jobs. And Tony is coming over shortly to check my feet and to give me a full examination. He’s actually a trained doctor. That’s why he’s a chemical expert as an assassin. And I trust him”

Eve was shocked. She didn’t ever think Villanelle would agree to taking time off. She was glad she was agreeing to see a doctor though.

“You and Tony seem very close. There’s just this energy between you. I mean I know he’s Dimitry’s husband so he’s family. But you have something special.”

Villanelle took a deep breath and then smiled a little nervously into the mirror at Eve “Actually, he was my husband first!”

“WHAT?” Eve exclaimed in shock and Villanelle took Eve by the hand. “Come here baby!” Villanelle led Eve to the bed and sat down on it then pulled Eve into her arms and lay with her against the pillows.

“I met Tony on a training mission. He saved me actually. I’d heard of him from Konstantin. I’d just gotten out of prison. I was 19. And he destroyed the target who was going to tear me apart and said “This is no place for pretty little girls with elementary skills.” But I was fast with unparalleled instincts and he was older than me. I ended up saving him on the way out. We became very close. I think he might have been the first person I loved. In a healthy way. Not in love with him. Just loved. And he adored me. He came from a very prestigious mob family. I knew he preferred men and he knew I preferred women. But his father was dying and desperately wanted to see Tony settled. He’d already had 2 failed marriages to women and with Dimitry always travelling for dancing and me being an assassin Tony was the only friend I had. He looked after me. I was so young and had been through so much. The idea of being wrapped up in the safety of someone who loved me in any capacity and a big Italian family who were all kind of dysfunctional in their own way seemed kind of nice. So I kind of became his girlfriend for all appearances purposes. Even though we still pursued our own same sex liasons and he was 13 years older than me. His father liked me. Said I was beautiful and had gumption. He encouraged our relationship. And when Tony proposed I said yes. He never asked but I insisted on a pre-nup. The other women he had been with married him for his money then made him feel less than for pursuing men once they had his ring on their finger. I wanted him to know that all I wanted was my best friend. I hope it’s okay that I’m telling you this baby. I don’t want secrets. I’m trying hard to confide in you”

Eve was beyond touched by Villanelle’s gesture and feeling instantly relieved as she heard the marriage of convenience her beautiful girl described. The possessiveness in her had flared momentarily but she was so grateful her love was opening up to her.

“Of course it is sweetheart. You’re doing so well. I was just a little shocked. But I was married to Niko for many years and of course you had a life before me. Please keep going!” Eve encouraged Villanelle as she stroked her face.

“We got married just after my 20th birthday. It was a beautiful wedding, I was given the best dress and jewellery and hair and makeup that money could buy but I was a poor little Russian girl who had gone straight from Prison to the isolated world of assassin training to my line of work to that. It was a bit scary at times but parts were fun too. Tony and I both hooked up with waiters at the wedding. He a man, me a woman.”

“Quite the modern marriage” Eve joked and Villanelle chuckled. “Yes it was. We had a very open marriage. Not long after the wedding Antony Senior, Tony’s father succumbed to his cancer. He called me to his death bed and he told me that he knew his son liked men. And he knew I liked women because he’d had me investigated and though I loved his son very much he could see I wasn’t in love with him. And that it was the same for Tony. But all he’d ever wanted was for his son to be loved for who he is and he could tell for me to marry him and insist on the pre-nup and to support Tony the way that I had I loved him that way, even if it wasn’t the way Nico had anticipated a bride would love his son. And he told me he was proud to call me his daughter and that he wanted Tony and I to go our separate ways and be happy. That he was making sure I would be looked after and that he knew no matter what Tony and I would always have something special. He gave me my London house in his will. And a couple of other properties and he basically set me up for life and then some.

But I didn’t leave Tony at first. The death of his father turned his world upside down. And he was my world at the time. The only one I really knew. I couldn’t do that to him. We loved each other very much. I didn’t really know much about feelings, about healthy love. But I always looked at other people who had it. That head over heels in love with one another connection and I used to wonder if that was out there for Tony and I. And then when I introduced him to Dimitry and saw the magic between the two of them I knew. I knew I had to let him go. He was very angry and hurt at first. He didn’t want to see. We’d been all each other had. But he and Dimitry together in a room were like magnets. Its like a magnetic force flung them together and everyone in the room disappeared. Like us baby” Villanelle lovingly traced the curve of Eve’s cheek and Eve kissed her forehead.

“So I kissed him, and I told him I would always love him. And I left him. He’s the best man I know. I wanted him to have the kind of love he deserved. We’d been together more than 2 years by then and though he was hurting as much as I was he wanted me to find that kind of all consuming love too. After he rebounded from me to Dimitry they already had more passion in a couple of months than we had in all that time. Dimitry was really weird about it at first but I sent them signed divorce papers as a gift with my blessing. And I was Tony’s best man at their wedding. And now I have found the great love of my life In you Darling Eve. I hope it’s okay that Tony and I will always have a closeness though. I can’t help it”

Eve stared in awe at the remarkable young woman before her who was so innocent and child-like in so many ways yet in moments like these, so mature beyond her years. And her heart! For someone who had known so little love and nurturing growing up she had such a beautiful, giving heart. She was so loyal to the people she loved. She loved the darkness of Villanelle, her love for the kill. The way their darkness matched one another’s. But she was falling more and more in love with her softer side as well.

“You, Oksana Astankova are without a doubt the most amazing human being I have ever met and I am just so in love with you. Of course it’s okay. I can’t promise that I won’t get jealous the same as you get possessive when it comes to Niko but I’m so grateful you told me”

“Thank you for being so understanding baby ” Villanelle said gracefully as she pulled Eve to snuggle gently in her arms.

Eve had to ask. ‘Dimitry alluded to you and tony being involved sexually?”

“Yes” Villanelle said quietly “He was the first man I had penetrative sex with after Sokolov. And it was very bad especially the first time, and the times after that. The first time I beat the shit out of him and he just let me because he wanted me to know that I had control. That he wouldn’t hurt me or hit back. And I felt so awful. It took 3 months of attempts before I could even…fully…and then another 3 months before I could do it without alcohol. It was worse when we were like ships in the night on missions and I lost momentum in being about to do it. But even when I started calming down and healing it was always more about a safe haven from loneliness and seeking what pleasure we could from someone who understood us. It wasn’t until I was with you that I truly grasped the magic that a physical relationship could be when you’re completely in love with someone. I had a very good therapist. She said it would be. I guess I just never believed her until you. And now I’m a complete and utter mess again” Villanelle sighed in frustration and turned to lay on her back, staring up at the ceiling.”

“Shhhhh don’t say that my beautiful girl” Eve reassured her as she placed little kisses on her cheek, so incredibly moved by Villanelle’s comment about never knowing real sexual magic before her. It was said with such wonder and sincerity.

“You’ve been to hell and back. Maybe we could see this therapist. I mean maybe I could go with you so I can learn how to help you and not frighten you while you’re healing.”

Villanelle shook her head “Baby no, You’ve already done so much for me. You don’t have to do that. I just want you to be you!”

“Hey, I want to. You’re doing so well at letting me in sweetheart. I’m so proud of you. Let me do this with you. Because I know if the situation was reversed you would do it for me.”

Villanelle nodded “Yeah I would. Also I would likely kill every person who hurt you and put ribbons around their corpses and lay them in a pile at your feet!”

Eve laughed even though she knew Villanelle was very serious. “Romance thy name is Villanelle!”

“Hey!” Villanelle said as she poked Eve’s arm and Eve chuckled. “You know something? I wouldn’t want you any other way though.”

“I’m so lucky” Villanelle said as she pulled her petit lover into her arms and sighed in contentment as Eve snuggled into her breasts.

“We both are” Eve replied softly.

*************************************

 

Tony and Eve stood outside Eve’s bedroom speaking in hushed tones. Tony had established Eve knew about his and Villanelle’s past while he was tending to her feet and now Villanelle was in the bedroom getting ready to be examined. She’d asked them both to leave.

“This one is a game changer Eve. You are the game changer. I’ve never known her to have a meltdown like she had on stage last night. And she’s had some epic emotionally charged tantrums when she’s been triggered but never to the extent of what you described happened when you got back here last night. She’s never really acknowledged her pain or grief so healthily before. But this is like the ultimate ripping off of the bandaid. Things could get bad. I hope its not awkward for you but I want you to know you have support in me, even if it’s just referrals to other medical professionals who can help you both”

Eve nodded as she felt fear enter her stomach. Not that she wasn’t willing to handle it but fear at Villanelle being hurt even more. “How bad does it normally get?”

Tony sighed “About a year after we were married she was ambushed on a mission. It threw her off kilter. The target she was chasing was a complete and utter sexual predator. He beat her pretty badly which very nearly became a brutal rape but She got herself out of it in the nick of time. It was the worst I have ever seen her. She couldn’t bare to be touched. Forget about sex. Not just with me but any of her female partners. She blocked all their numbers, wore baggy clothes and got very quiet. Anyone who so much as came on to her was brutally shut down and if they persisted, disposed of. She totally withdrew into herself. And that was without even coming face to face with that animal Sokolov and all he did to her.”

Eve’s face twisted in worry “How did you pull her out of it?” Tony shrugged. “The therapist she mentioned, medication, love, patience. Time. It took a couple of months before she was Roxie again. Even when she started coming out of her shell she was very much Villanelle. There was no softness. But in the end I think she as much pulled herself out as me or anyone else did. She was running from what happened though. Facing it head on like she is now? I honestly don’t know what to expect. But she landed hard on her ribs last night so I need to check her out. Let’s just take it one step and day at a time maybe?”

Eve nodded “Okay, seems logical”

She turned and opened the bedroom door and both her and Tony entered the room to find Villanelle sitting on the bed in her panties and pink socks with the sweater she had been wearing clutched to her torso and mid section.

“Come on Bella, I’ll be quick I promise. It’s not like I haven’t seen it all before” Tony said gently and Villanelle pulled her knees up to her chest and shook her head. “I want Eve to stay!”

Eve was at her side in an instant “I’m right here sweetheart!” She sat beside Villanelle and Tony knelt down and felt around her throat ‘Swollen glands….open up for me” He shone a light in her mouth ‘Strep throat from stress and being run down” He felt her forehead “And you have a temperature”

“My poor baby” Eve said sympathetically as she kissed Villanelle’s cheek and Tony reached for the sweater.

“Noooo” Villanelle whined and Eve took her face between her hands “Look at me Roxie. I am right here. I’m not going anywhere okay. We have to get you checked out. Just hold my hand” Villanelle nodded and let Tony take the sweater away.

She was trembling as Tony began feeling around her ribs and the sides of her breasts and Eve gasped as big red blotches began appearing on her body almost instantly.

‘It’s anxiety” Tony explained “Just breathe Bella please.”

Villanelle grew more and more pale, tears coursing from her eyes that were squeezed shut and then her breathing became really raspy. Then increasingly laboured.

“You’re sensitive around the ribs Bella I’ve seen them broken, I think you’re fine but If you feel any pain that doesn’t feel like bruising you need to go for X rays.”

Villanelle was gasping for breath and Eve looked on in horror ‘Tony what’s happening?”

‘She’s having a panic attack” Tony replied as Villanelle wrapped her arms around her breasts and tried to breathe

“Come on Bella you can do this, Get control. Go to a safe place in your head!” Tony urged her and Villanelle whimpered as she gasped for breath and nodded. Eve realised this had happened before. There seemed to be some kind of plan.

“Focus Bella, shut it all out, Focus on what matters. Where are you?” He urged again

Villanelle closed her eyes. “I’m in…..I’m in the bathroom and I’m….telling her to wear it down!”

“Wear what down?” Tony asked.

“Her hair….It’s so beautiful. I’m in the bathroom and I’m telling her to wear it down. I’m in the bathroom and I’m telling her to wear it down. I’m in the bathroom and I’m telling her to wear it down”

Eve bit back tears as she realised the place Villanelle went to, to bring herself back from a panic attack, the thing that could cut through all the pain was the day that they met. Her breathing was beginning to even out a bit.

“Who is it Bella?” He encouraged her and Villanelle didn’t answer she just took deep breaths repeating the chant like a mantra

“It was me!” Eve said as she went to wrap her arms around Villanelle but she cried out like she’d been stabbed and Tony shook his head pleadingly at Eve. It was then that the tears fell but Eve took the throw on the bed and wrapped it around Villanelle. She held it together with one hand and softly stroked Villanelle’s hair.

“It’s the day we first met wasn’t it my beautiful girl?” Eve said gently and Villanelle stopped chanting and nodded. “We were in the bathroom and I was putting my hair up and you told me to leave it down”

“Eve” Villanelle gasped as she burst into tears and threw her arms around Eve’s neck.

“That’s right. There we go, there’s my beautiful girl. You came back to me” Eve cooed soothingly as she tentatively rubbed her back through the blanket. “Shhhhh its alright I’m here. We’re going to help you get through this!”

“Roxie I’m giving you a mild sedative okay Bella?” Tony said gently and Villanelle nodded, flinching slightly as the needle went into her arm. “Just no more touching okay, no more being naked. Just no more” Villanelle pleaded and Eve stroked her hair. “Shhhhh okay sweetheart, no more. It’s all over now. And you were so brave. I’m so proud of you” And yet she was letting Eve touch her.

Eve could feel all the tension leaving her young love’s body as the sedative took effect.
“Let’s get you dressed and more comfortable sweetheart” Eve said as she took Villanelle’s sweater and slipped it on over the younger woman’s arms as she raised them weakly. Tony helped with the pants and softly said to Eve. “She’ll be pretty non responsive for a while now, and then she’ll start to come out of it. When she does she’ll be disoriented but easy to handle. She’s actually pretty adorable sometimes when she’s medicated. ”

In an instant he had lifted her and placed her against the pillows where she curled up and closed her eyes. Eve watched as the colour began to return to her face and she drifted off to sleep.

“Hey you!” Tony said as he saw Eve’s positively grief stricken face and held out his arms. “Come here!” Eve burst into tears and went into his arms. “I want to help her so badly. I just want to take the pain away and I don’t know how!” she sobbed and Tony rocked her gently in his arms “I know Eve. For what it’s worth though, I could never talk her down that quickly from a panic attack when she’s triggered. No one has ever been able to for that matter. It’s going to take some time but I think you’re what she needed. I think your love will heal her”

Eve pulled away and looked at Tony in wonder ‘Really?”

‘Yes really!” Tony replied emphatically. “You are the love that I always wanted for her. The kind I was so scared she’d never let in or give a chance. I used to feel so guilty about being so happy with Dimitry and want the same for her. What the two of you have, this all consuming cat mouse can’t be with each other, can’t be without each other and now can’t live without each other obsessive magical twisted epic love. It’s in an entire realm of it’s own. And you’re the only person she has ever given up control to. I think the way you low key top her is good for her. I think it makes her feel safe and she opens up and lets herself be vulnerable to you because in that moment she doesn’t feel like she has to be invincible Villanelle to block everything and everyone out.”

“But I worry, I don’t want to hurt her, I’m. so scared If I push too far I’ll break her. I don’t want to lose her.”

‘Darling you stabbed her and it didn’t break her and she came back to you. I think you’re good here!” Eve actually laughed in spite of herself and Tony grinned “By the way, I knew I was going to like you when she told me that. She called me up all indignant. Asking me if I could believe what that infuriating Eve Polastri had done. I told her I’d thought about it myself more than a few times and hats off to you for doing it”

Eve’s jaw dropped ‘How did she respond to that?”

Tony rolled his eyes ‘She sent an exploding pink glitter bomb packaged as a housewarming gift to my brand new apartment in Berlin!”

“Oh my god” Eve said as she covered her mouth trying not to laugh. It was such a Villanelle thing to do.

“Yes. She’s a little shit! And so quiet and angelic while she sleeps” He said as he looked over at her affectionately and Eve smiled. “Thank you for the support. For all the beautiful things you’ve shared with me. I’m really glad she had you too. If she hadn’t have had you looking out for her then I might not have her now”

Tony shook his head “Nah. Anything as fucked up in the best possible way as you two was destiny!”

Eve smiled and Tony packed his things in his bag. “But you’re a part of our “chosen” family now. The unit we’ve all built to look after each other. As unconventional and dysfunctional as we all are. I’m going to call in some prescriptions for Roxie and have them messengered over to you with a full run down of when they should be taken and what they’re for
Eve stood up and hugged Tony “Thank you so much for everything!

“It’s my pleasure darling. And just remember, One day at a time”

********************************************
Eve looked up from the TV to see Villanelle come shuffling over to the couch wearing jeans tucked into a pair of her favourite knee high suede boots and an oversized mulberry coloured Chloe sweater. Her hair was in a high haphazard ponytail and she looked so fuzzy and cosy with flushed cheeks from her sleep. She looked like a very beautiful young woman. But she was hiding her body like Tony had said. That much she was sure of.

“Hi baby! I’m sorry I slept the day away!” Villanelle said shyly. Eve wasn’t sure what to expect but she held out her arms ‘Come here sweetheart?” Much to Eve’s delight Villanelle went straight to the couch and snuggled into Eve. “I’m glad you slept Roxie. I think you really need it!”

“About the panic attack….Um…..” Villanelle stammered a little and Eve kissed her young lover’s forehead. “If you’re about to apologise please don’t sweetheart. You’re working through so much pain. At least I know what to expect now. How to help you. I was lucky to learn some things with Tony. And the fact that it was memories of me that pulled you out…that was so moving for me. And reassuring too because now I know how I can get you to come back to me!”

Villanelle couldn’t believe what she was hearing Eve was so incredible. She didn’t know what she had done to deserve her. ‘Always. Eve!” she said in a shaky voice as she hugged her tightly. I will always come back to you.”

They sat there just holding onto each other for a little while and breathing then Eve remembered the package that was sent over.

“Tony sent your medication over Roxie. We need to get you something to eat and then you need to take it. Actually why are you dressed like you’re going out?” Eve asked curiously and Villanelle rubbed her tummy. “I’m really craving Pizza from that little place we like around the block. I feel very fuzzy from the sedative, I thought maybe we could go for a walk and get some?”

Eve eyed Villanelle doubtfully “Baby you have strep throat and you’re traumatised and haven’t had a great day. Why don’t we get it delivered?”

Villanelle looked up at her with huge puppy dog eyes and pouted “Please Evie?”

Eve melted and shook her head. “So fucking adorable” she thought to herself. And if her beautiful girl wanted to eat pizza she really should be encouraging it considering how little she had eaten and how much weight she had lost in the lead up to her breakdown.

“Okay sweetheart we’ll go get pizza!” she said in dramatic mock defeat.

‘Yay!” Villanelle said as she squeezed her.

*****************************************

Villanelle sat in the corner of the crowded pizza shop amidst the dinner rush waiting for their pizza with Eve nestled in her lap. She didn’t know how it was possible to be at one of the lowest and highest points of her whole life simultaneously. Everything was falling apart. Her life was a mess. She’d been forced to face her worst fears head on. But where as in the past she would have simply run, with Eve at her side she somehow felt like she could face it. With the magnificent beautiful disaster in her arms doing life with her, she felt almost like she could do and be anything. That maybe they could be beautiful disasters together.

And oh she was so very beautiful, the light shining fragments of gold and amber through her lovers magnificent and wild ebony curls. Her stunning almond shaped eyes like pools of dark chocolate she could drown in.

“Do you have any idea how beautiful you are Eve Polastri” Villanelle whispered softly into Eve’s ear and Eve turned to her in surprise, a delicate blush dancing across her cheeks.

“I love you so much!” Villanelle said with so much emotion that Eve could only stare as her young lover separated her curls like she was putting the finishing touches on a masterpiece. It was the first time she had spoken since they had ordered. She’d been quite scattered on the walk to the pizza shop but she’d held Eve’s hand and followed her compliantly. It was rather sweet and had been easier than she expected.

“Yeah? How much?” Eve asked a little teasingly hoping to see her smile and Villanelle’s face lit up as she said ‘All the much!”

Eve beamed at the cuteness of what her beautiful girl had said with such an innocent sincerity that it was beyond gorgeous “All the much?”

Villanelle looked thoughtful for a moment and she nodded with a big smile “Yes”.

“Sweet baby!” Eve said as she caressed Villanelle’s face, taking in the sight of her eyes that had lost almost all their sparkle but still had a little saved only for her, only for when her beautiful girl looked at her. Even after all she had been through. She didn’t think she had ever loved Villanelle more than she did at that moment and despite being in a public place she found herself leaning in to capture the gorgeous russian’s lips in a chaste but very tender kiss.

Their order number was called so Villanelle reluctantly deposited Eve onto her feet then stood up. They collected their order and were walking along with Villanelle holding the pizza In one arm and Eve with the other.

“What will you do when you’re on leave?” Eve asked in concern, worried about leaving Villanelle on her own in the state she was in while she was at work.

“I don’t know. Make you lunches and nice dinners. Maybe I will knit you a scarf” Villanelle mused and Eve looked at her in surprised as she laughed out loud. “You knit?” Villanelle shrugged “I do a lot of things”

Suddenly Eve cried out as the ankle she rolled when she was attacked a couple of months earlier and despite still being affected by the sedative Villanelle had tossed the Pizza and had Eve swept into her arms in a second.

“Roxie your pizza!” Eve said as she looked at the crumpled mess of cheese pastry and topping on the ground behind them while Villanelle continued to walk them home.

“You were right Cherie. We’ll just get delivery! It doesn’t matter. I have the most important thing right here.” She said sincerely.

“You can put me down….I can walk. You’re not well my love!”

Villanelle kissed Eve’s forehead “Not a chance Мое сердце!”

**************************************************
Eve sat on the kitchen counter as Villanelle strapped her ankle for her. She really wasn’t in much pain at all but her beautiful girl, always the protector even when she was drowning in her own pain had insisted. So while Villanelle had tended to her ankle, she had ordered them both more pizza.

“All done baby” Villanelle said as she planted a delicate kiss on Eve’s foot and Eve reached for her, pulling her between her thighs. “That was very sexy the way you just picked me up like that. I’ve never had anyone throw a pizza for me before you know!”

Villanelle smiled cheekily “Oh yeah? Just wait till you see me throw Thai food!”

“Mmm I just love it when you talk dirty to me!” Eve said as she pulled Villanelle in for a kiss, muffling the younger woman’s giggles with her lips. The kiss become more passionate and Eve slid her hands up Villanelle’s sweater to the creamy skin beneath and grasped her waist. She felt her beautiful girl stiffen instantly and she was no longer returning the kiss. But still her young lover stood very still in her arms letting her kiss her and touch her. So she moved her hands, placed a little kiss on Villanelles nose and then grasped her beautiful face.

“Don’t feel like you have to fast forward and jump ahead to something you’re not ready for. Don’t think I don’t notice when you’re not here in the moment with me. And though I love the special side to our dynamic that is just ours, just mine, when you’re my good girl don’t ever think that means you have to be a very good girl and just stand there and let me do whatever I want if it frightens you just because you’re worried about disappointing me. Because even when you’re my infuriating stubborn maddening frustrating girl. My beautiful girl, you’re still my good girl. No matter what.”

Villanelle’s lip quivered “I used to be so much better at dealing with this. I don’t know why I am not anymore”

Eve threaded her fingers through Villanelle’s “Because for the first time ever sweetheart you are actually dealing with this. Because you’ve let me see your pain and stand in it with you.”

Villanelle pressed her forehead against Eve’s “I need to believe that I can make it out the other side of this Eve”

Eve nuzzled her nose adoringly “You will sweet baby. I promise. We’ll make it out together. All the much right?”

Villanelle nodded as she bit back tears and picked Eve up, holding her in her arms like she would never let her go and Eve clung to her tightly just breathing with her. Eve pressed a tender kiss to Villanelle’s neck and whispered.

“All the much!”

Chapter Text

“Hello baby!” Villanelle called out cheerfully from the roof as Eve walked in the front gate and Eve felt her heart in her throat “Jesus get down from there now Oksana! I mean it!”

“Ooohh calling me by my full name. I must be in big trouble!” Villanelle teased as she casually sat down and slid down to where the ladder was propped up. She turned and stepped down a few rungs then jumped the rest to the ground causing Eve to cry out.

“Eve you do realise that I literally have to run across roof tops and jump onto another one sometimes don’t you and that I’ve been trained to do it! Besides I’ve just finished fixing the roof!”

“I know sweetheart but me knowing that and seeing you do crazy matrix shit in the flesh are two completely different things!” Eve reasoned and Villanelle giggled as she approached Eve and threw her over her shoulder bag and all, carrying her into the house

“You worry too much Cherie!” she ribbed her as Eve cried out for the incorrigible young woman to put her down but ended up collapsing in a fit of giggles.

When Villanelle placed Eve delicately on her feet inside the kitchen she placed a gentle kiss on her forehead “How was work?”

Eve shrugged “Good, Same old. Will be nice to have you back soon!” Villanelle nodded “It will be nice to be back. But I don’t know, I’ve kind of liked this time. I think I needed it.”

Eve wrapped her arms around Villanelle’s waist and looked around her home. In the almost two weeks Villanelle had off from MI6 on mental health leave she’d almost finished repainting the outside of the house, fixed the roof now apparently, done a whole lot of handy jobs around the exterior and interior of her house and even some redecorating. It really couldn’t have been restful for her at all but she’d assured Eve she would go crazy if she didn’t keep busy. And yet as she looked at her beautiful girl she’d lost that gaunt look she’d had. She’d filled out a little and there was colour in her face again.

Every day Villanelle had made them breakfast and packed Eve the kind of lunch that had everyone in the office, even Carolyn. So she’d made an extra one that day which Carolyn had absolutely loved. She then drove Eve to work, used the MI6 gym to stay in shape as she was still allowed to do this despite being on leave and every night Eve came home to an amazing home cooked meal.

‘What is that incredible smell?” Eve asked and Villanelle smiled ‘Dinner! BBQ pork and vegetable skewers with home-made sticky date pudding and vanilla bean ice cream for dessert!”

“Oh my god you’re going to make me get fat with all this amazing food!” Villanelle shrugged “You’ll never be able to convince me that having even more Eve to kiss and hold is a bad thing. Besides. I’m glad you’re eating better. You needed someone to take better care of you than you were taking of yourself”

Eve felt herself melt at her beautiful girl’s sweet sincerity. “Sweet baby” she said as she cupped the side of Villanelle’s face. ‘How did I get so lucky?” Eve gently kissed her ‘And when did we get a BBQ?”

“Yesterday!” Villanelle said with a giggle as she tugged on one of Eve’s curls. “I’m going to go clean up for dinner. You are not allowed to attempt to do anything that remotely resembles cooking without my supervision! I haven’t given you enough lessons yet!” She then laughed as she walked away.

“Ouch that hurts baby!” Eve called after her and Villanelle playfully turned to flip her off before heading up the stairs.

Eve smiled contentedly. They hadn’t had sex since things came to a stand-still after the panic attack Villanelle had but she had relaxed more and had stopped wearing all the baggy clothes to intentionally hide her body. Her beautiful girl was growing more comfortable around her again and when she kissed her passionately she no longer froze or pulled away. But every night she wore full length silk pyjamas to bed and she looked heavenly in them as she did in everything but Eve had never seen her in them before.

Villanelle had been seeing the amazing therapist she had spoken to in the past and Eve had even gone to a session with her the day before. It had been hard watching her beautiful girl break down over her past pain but Dr Richards had given her some excellent tips, including letting Villanelle have her domestic projects because it grounded her and made her feel like she had a home that was a safe place to fall. And now Villanelle was about to have her 26th birthday the following day. Her makeshift family had wanted to do something and Dimitry and Antony had decided on booking out a fabulous little eatery and cocktail bar Villanelle loved. Villanelle however had demanded that at Midnight when her birthday officially began a significant portion of the evening would be just her and Eve so they’d settled for an early start and an early finish.

It was hard not to feel hopeful when the sun was coming out again.

************************************
Villanelle sat on the floor at Eve’s feet as the older woman brushed out the tangles in her hair in front of a movie after dinner. They were the very picture of domestic bliss and Villanelle couldn’t remember a time when she had been so happy. Either could Eve.

“Sweetheart thank you for everything you have done to make the house look so lovely. Inside and out. Since we’ve been together you have made it feel more like a home than it ever has before.”

Villanelle considered what Eve had said carefully then quietly said ‘Is that what this feeling is? Being so excited to wake up with you here, when you walk through the door. Making the house nice, cooking in the kitchen. Painting. Feeling happy and safe. Is that what home feels like?”

“Well yes that’s a pretty spot on description!” Eve said as she kissed Villanelle’s head and she looked up at Eve from the floor with huge eyes full of wonder. “I didn’t really know. I’ve never had anything like this before. I’ve never really had a proper home. But I know that I really like it.”

Eve bit back tears. Of course she wouldn’t know. Look at what she’d endured, what she’d come from. The life she had led.

“Roxie come here baby” Eve commanded firmly but lovingly as she held her hand out and Villanelle compliantly got off the floor and picked Eve up, sitting back down with her on her lap.

“Yes, that’s what home feels like. This is your home. This is our home. I mean I know you have your house here that is full of people you love at the moment and that you had some happy times with Tony and….”

Villanelle gently kissed Eve, cutting her off. “No Eve it was never like this. It never felt like this. It was like only doing things at 80%, never quite being whole. With you, being here with you. It feels 110%.”

Eve felt a lump in her throat. How very similar they were “That’s how it was for me with Niko. Sometimes it was like I was sleeping through my life. But with you I’m wide awake.For the first time in my life I am wide awake.”

“Oh Eve!” Villanelle gasped as she kissed Eve deeply and Eve gasped at the intensity. Villanelle hadn’t kissed her like that since before her attack. Maybe now was the chance to try again.

She slipped out of Villanelle’s lap and held out her hand “Come upstairs with me sweetheart!” Villanelle saw the unmistakable look of desire in Eve’s eyes and felt a knot form in her stomach but still she placed her hand in Eve’s and followed her up to the bedroom. She could do this. This was home. She finally had a home and when she had something so perfect, something she never dreamed she would have, she couldn’t fuck it up. She just had to bluff her way through this. It was just sex right? She’d done it a hundred times before. Gone through the motions. Never ever with Eve but if she could just catch her off guard.

Eve cried out in surprise as Villanelle managed to lift her, toss her onto the bed on her back and start pulling her sweat pants down in virtually a split second. ‘Roxie what are you doing?” she asked in surprise and Villanelle removed the pants before kneeling down in front of the bed and pulling Eve’s legs to rest on her shoulders ‘Kissing your thigh baby” Villanelle said cheekily and Eve willed herself not to get carried away.

“Sweetheart there’s no rush!” Eve said as she tried to wriggle away but Villanelle had her in an iron cast grip ‘Oh but I think there is darling Eve as I haven’t tasted you for almost two weeks!” Villanelle said teasingly and Eve looked at her pleadingly.

“You know why that is sweetheart. When you’re ready to make love with me we will do that, until then I honestly just wanted to hold you and kiss you and do anything you felt comfortable doing.” Eve said gently and Villanelle rolled her eyes.

‘Well I feel comfortable making my amazing girlfriend come till she screams” she said defiantly and Eve’s voice harshened “Well I don’t now let me go!”

Villanelle sighed in frustration but still she let Eve go. She could feel it, feel the bravado word vomit rising inside her, feel the panic that she wasn’t good enough because she was scared, scared of making love, still reeling from things that had happened to her, scared that she wasn’t worthy of a home. She should have stopped it but she didn’t.

“Boooooooooorrrrriiiiing!” Villanelle cried out exaggeratedly.

Eve took a deep breath and willed herself to be patient and got her pants on “Roxie come on baby just get on the bed with me, let me hold you. You’ve got nothing to be scared of I promise!”

“I am not scared!” Villanelle spat and Eve walked over to her and stood directly in front of her. “Then let me touch you! Or undress you sweetheart” She went to slip her hand into Villanelle’s pants and the younger woman sprang back like she’d been stabbed.

“See you’re not ready!” Eve said gently and Villanelle’s temper flared “Oh I suppose you think you’re so clever Eve Polastri. Is that what this was about? proving your point? I’m the fuck up who isn’t ready, who won’t do what you want, who won’t fuck exactly as you expect me to like your good obedient girl so I’m not allowed to touch you?”

“Come on Roxie you know that’s not what I’m…..”

“MY NAME IS VILLANELLE!” she snapped loudly and Eve’s eyes blazed “Not to me it isn’t. We’re way past that Oksana and you know it!”

Villanelle pushed Eve towards the wall and picked her up under the arms, lifting her so their faces were level and pinning her against it.

“You know I could snap you like a twig!” Villanelle said but her face was full of torment.

“But you won’t” Eve said confidently.

“But I could!” Villanelle challenged her once more and Eve brought her hands up to cup Villanelle’s face “Then why are you holding me like I’m made of china?”

Villanelle let out a groan and slammed Eve down on the bed in frustration.

“Or throwing me on a pile of pillows with my head and neck supported?” Eve questioned her further.

“ BITCH BECAUSE YOU’RE THE MOST PRECIOUS THING IN THE WORLD TO ME!” Villanelle screamed

Eve looked at Villanelle with every ounce of love she felt for her. “You might want to work on your delivery of the whole “I can snap you like a twig” threat my beautiful girl. I’m not convinced.

“Argh!” Villanelle cried out in frustration “This is bullshit. I’m not staying here. I’m going home. Goodbye Eve!”

She stormed out and Eve ran after her. “Roxie wait!” but then she stopped. She knew some time to calm down would do Villanelle good. How she would like to just slap her out of sheer frustration though sometimes. Her fear was clear as day. But she had so much pride and would rather have pointless fights than admit it.

“She is such a little shit!!” Eve said aloud in frustration. But she remembered back to a time when she was about the same age trying to heal herself. And she couldn’t imagine anyone wanting or loving her. So she’d chosen Niko because he was safe. He’d ended up being too safe. She wouldn’t allow Villanelle to cut herself off from the life she should have just because she was scared and she thought shutting everyone and everything out was safe.
She lay on her bed willing herself to calm down and after a while she went downstairs and picked up her phone. She didn’t want to ring and risk Villanelle answering and ending up even more upset while she was driving. So instead she typed.

“Goodnight beautiful girl. I love you very much. All the much. I will see you at your therapy session tomorrow. This is still your home. And you’re still my good girl always xxx.

Heading back upstairs she stripped off her pants and climbed into bed in her panties and T shirt, feeling rather tired.

Villanelle walked away from Eve’s house as a panic attack took over. She thought she would feel better but the further she got from Eve’s the worst she got. She thought a walk might calm her down and then she’d call a cab to take her the rest of the way because she felt a bit too light headed to drive but she felt like she was walking away from the only place she wanted to be. She felt her phone buzz again and took it out. When she read Eve’s message she whimpered through her laboured breaths and stopped in the middle of the street trying to steady herself. She had just been awful. Eve was right, she didn’t feel ready in that moment to make love and she had been vile to her beautiful precious Eve and all she had done in return was show her unconditional love and reassurance.

She’d been so overwhelmed by the concept of home, of losing it just as she grasped it, of not being enough, of letting Eve down and the traumatic memories that she had just freaked out. The tears began to fall faster as she turned and walked back to Eve’s house but the closer she got, the more the feeling that she was about to pass out began to fade. She opened the front door and threw her things on the side table. Walking up the stairs she stood in the bedroom doorway.

“I’m sorry!” she gasped and Eve flew up in bed at the sight of a very overwhelmed looking Villanelle standing in the bedroom once more, her beautiful tear streaked face twisted in anguish as she gasped for breath.

“You were right. I wasn’t ready. I was scared and instead of admitting it I was an asshole to you. And I know I didn’t let you undress me or touch me but when I am not being stupid like I was before, I am trying and this is what I can do right now”

Villanelle took her top off and slipped her pants off to reveal a black Calvin Klein pair of man style trunks with the signature white waist band and a matching black fitted tank singlet.

“And I know it’s not much…….” Villanelle trailed off as her voice cracked and she fought to breathe while fresh tears coursed down her face and Eve had tears in her own eyes. She could see how hard it was for her beautiful girl to strip down to her underwear in front of her and be so vulnerable.

“Not much? It is everything. You are everything!” Eve said vehemently. “You’re having a panic attack Roxie, come here baby!” she said as she held out her arms and this time Villanelle ran to the bed and got in with Eve, snuggling into her arms.

“Good girl. You’re such a good girl. You’re my beautiful girl and you’re trying so hard. I see that. I see you Roxie”

‘I know. And its magical and completely fucking terrifying all at the same time” Villanelle gasped while her eyes remained closed and Eve was shocked at how fast her young lovers heart was pounding.

“Shhhhh I know my love” Eve said empathetically as she rocked Villanelle in her arms and wiped her tears away. “Slow steady breaths my beautiful girl, that’s the way! You’re safe. I’ve got you” Eve encouraged her and Villanelle’s breathing began to slow. When it was almost back to normal Villanelle opened her eyes to look at Eve with so much love and trust and adoration….and was that realization? That it almost rendered the older woman breathless.

“I used to be so good at running. I could feel the attack coming on and I thought going home would make it better. But the further I got from you the worse I felt. Because my home is right here. My home is wherever you are Eve. You’re my home. And the closer I got back to you the more my attack faded.”

“Sweet baby” Eve whispered as she placed featherlight kisses all over Villanelle’s face “You’re my home too. I would have given you space but you don’t know how it means to me that you came back to me on your own and so quickly. You’re going to stay right here in my arms for the rest of the night. I’m not taking no for an answer alright?”

Her tone was loving but very authoritative and Villanelle felt everything going quiet and feeling so much simpler and bearable the way it always did of late when Eve took control.

“Yes baby” she said obediently and as she looked up at Eve with big green eyes so full of trust and utter submission Eve felt almost unworthy. Her complex little love was so completely and utterly precious. Such a gift.

“My beautiful girl. Such a good girl for me. I love you so very much. And I know you love me. Even when you’re having an off moment. You prove it over and over everyday so I know. Even when you’re angry you love me…what was it? “Bitch because you’re the most precious thing in the world to me!”

Villanelle covered her mouth in horror and cringed but her eyes danced with amusement as Eve burst into giggles and she soon found herself laughing. ‘I am awful” Villanelle said self- deprecatingly and Eve shrugged ‘I don’t know, there was a certain Villanelle charm to it. It was very you baby. I can honestly say know no one has ever stated their love for me in quite that manner or while threatening to snap me!”

Villanelle looked serious for a moment “Oh god Eve I was terrible, the things I said to you!”

Eve dropped a little kiss on her forehead, her lips pursed trying not to laugh at the memory her fiery young lover having an explosive meltdown that was very much all smoke mirrors and no real fire. “Like I said sweetheart if you want me to take you seriously you might want to refrain from declarations of devotion and cradling me in your arms during acts of aggression.”

Villanelle cracked up laughing and soon the room resounded with the giggles of two very different women who were very much the same in many ways and had finally found their home in one another.

***********************************

“Going back to Eve’s last night and realising her significance to you was a big step for you Villanelle. Has something changed?” Dr Richards asked as Villanelle sat next to Eve on the couch. She’d had her solo session and then Eve had joined her for their couple’s session.

Villanelle turned and smiled at Eve. ‘She already knew what I do for work and wasn’t disgusted. But now it’s like the very worst things of my past, the very worst behaviour inside of me. She’s seen it all. And she is still here. She still loves me. I guess I just wanted to go home!”

Hannah Richards couldn’t help but smile. Her young client had come such a long way in the past 7 years. Villanelle had hit on her many times and she could honestly say that she’d likely come the closest she’d ever come to unethical sexual behaviour with her. But Antony Martinelli senior had been very good to her so when his lovely son brought his young partner to her as a damaged broken 19 year old she felt compelled to help her. She’d also been about the same amount of years her senior as Eve though she knew now that Villanelle definitely liked older women. Despite her better judgement she’d actually become quite fond of the stunning young blonde in front of her.

And Eve Polastri fascinated her. She had been so good for Villanelle. She seemed on some levels as dark and twisted yet more mature and grounded. She knew Eve was hiding things. She was exceptional at her job. But she just didn’t know what.

“And this new job at MI6. You’re enjoying it? What about it is it that you enjoy” She questioned Villanelle further and the young woman looked thoughtful. “It stops me from being bored. I get to do what I’m good at but the people are less annoying. I like the boss Carolyn. She’s a real lady boss. I get to see Eve at work and it’s kind of like consultancy work. Sometimes I go to work and sometimes I don’t. It’s not like I really need the money so I don’t have to work in between ‘missions’ and I get to look after our home. I’ve never had a real one before like this. Never really had someone to come home to the way I have Eve. It’s nice to be able to focus on that”

Villanelle took Eve’s hand and beamed at her, a smile that Eve returned.

“Eve, has it been surprising for you that Villanelle revels in what some would consider a ‘dated’ role for women. The role of home maker?”

Eve chuckled “I’ve learned that nothing should surprise me about this girl. I don’t know how many traditional home makers climb on roofs to retile them while their sticky date pudding cooks either!” Villanelle and Dr Richards laughed.

“She’s young. I don’t want her to feel like she has to limit herself. But she’s been through so much. In many ways she’s so much older than her years. If she wants to stay home sometimes and paint the house and cook and decorate and it brings her fulfillment then that’s what she should do. And she’ll have my full support and gratitude for everything she does. I don’t for a second take for granted how well she takes care of me. Of us!” Eve said honestly and Villanelle nodded ‘I think Eve and I take care of each other!” Dr Richards smiled. They were certainly a very remarkable and engaging couple. There were a lot of issues but it was rather lovely to have a pair so loved up in front of her instead of tearing each other to shreds.

“I think you do too. So Eve, Villanelle has said that you explore D/s and though you switch, since the paedophile investigation and subsequent dragging up of her trauma, you tend to top and even though you’re currently not sexually involved in the traditional sense that element to your relationship has still been present. How does it make you feel, topping Villanelle?”

Eve took a deep breath. This was a question she didn’t expect. “Ahhh….It’s not something I set out to do. I was just trying to take care of her and we were in times where I felt I could do that better than she would take care of herself. The way she gives herself to me in her graceful submission, so full of love and devotion is I think likely the most precious gift I’ve ever been given. It needs to be treated as such . But at the same time, often I am so terrified of breaking her. Dominance is a powerful thing when someone is young, vulnerable and placing all their trust in you. In someone broken it can be used against someone to hurt them further. I would never want to do that to my beautiful girl. She is my world”

“Interesting” Dr Richards thought to herself as she processed Eve’s heartfelt sincere response that was more telling than she seemed to realise.

“Have you ever been dominant with a partner before?”

“No I haven’t. Oksana is the first” Eve replied honestly and Dr Richards was very tempted to ask her if she’d been a submissive but she stopped herself.

“And Villanelle, what is it like when Eve tops you? How does it feel submitting to her?”

Villanelle took Eve’s hand and intertwined her fingers with her lovers. “It feels safe and right. Everything just becomes quiet and simple. Easier somehow. I don’t have to fight or plan or make decisions. In that moment I’m just hers. And I’m so thankful and proud that I get to be hers so I feel lucky. As long as she lets me open doors for her and spoil her and pick up the tab when we go out I feel like we still have a really good balance. And when I get a bit better and we resume our usual bedroom activities I top a lot of the time anyway. But I like…..I like being her good girl.” Villanelle gave Eve a shy little smile and Eve gently kissed her forehead.

‘What do you like about it?” Dr Richards asked and Villanelle looked at Eve with so much conviction she felt unworthy. “I’ve never been one before. But with her no matter how bad I am I’m still her good girl!”

‘Always!” Eve said vehemently as she kissed her hand.

“And Eve, you help foster this balance?” Dr Richards probed and Eve nodded “I Love that we belong to each other. I love that she belongs to me. But I want her to belong to herself first before she belongs to me. As long as she does that, she can’t be crushed.”

“Bingo!” Dr Richards thought as she looked at Eve carefully.

“Villanelle tell me something wonderful that Eve has done this week. Something special that helps you trust her.”

Villanelle pondered the question. ‘She looks after me when I have anxiety attacks. And she brushes knots out my hair and puts lip balm on my lips when she puts it on hers. And she’s been excited about my birthday. More than me. For me it’s the little things that mean the most!”

‘And Eve what about you? Something Villanelle has done?”

Eve looked down and smiled. “She’s teaching me to cook. Slowly. And I’m still awful. But its something I have long been ribbed for mercilessly and I learned from a young age that I was beyond help. That’s what I was told. And my inadequacy in the kitchen somehow became the symbol of all my failings as a human and even though I laugh when people tease me its always kind of been a scar for me. Oksana is the most amazing cook but she is so patient with me. And she’s not condescending in the way she teaches me, she still teases me but it’s done with so much love and affection. She’s so patient with me and instead of it being something I dread, its actually kind of fun. And I love her for that!”

Dr Richards felt herself understanding more of Eve’s story. “Well I have to say, you two certainly have your own personal dysfunctions as individuals and a couple. But I honestly think you’re pretty good for each other. And you birthday girl have party prep to attend to so we best leave it there!” she gave Villanelle a big smile and Villanelle stood ‘Okay, I’ll just pop to the bathroom!”

When she was gone Eve grabbed her bag as well as Villanelles and Dr Richard’s took her chance.

‘Who was she?” Dr Richards asked and Eve looked confused ‘I’m sorry?”

“The dominant, your dominant. The one who taught you your cooking symbolised all your failures. Who was she?”

Eve went pale and began to twist her hands as she looked down. “It was a he!”

“He broke you didn’t he?” Dr Richards said gently and Eve’s lip quivered as she fought memories she’d worked so hard to overcome.

‘Eve if you ever want to come in for a session on your own my door is open and Villanelle doesn’t have to know. I think you are amazing for her but she is very smart and though she’s reeling now and working through her own recovery she won’t always be and if you’re hiding things you won’t be able to hide them forever.

‘It was another girl and another life. I’d really rather just leave it!” Eve pleaded and Dr Richards nodded ‘Alright. Well if you change your mind you know where to find me. I’m going to head out to lunch. I’ll leave you to compose yourself” she said kindly. “Please tell Villanelle I said goodbye and I will see her at her party tonight!”

“Okay I will!” Eve said softly and Dr Richards gently squeezed her shoulder as she left.

Villanelle came out of the bathroom a few minutes later and Eve stood “Dr Richards went to lunch and said she’d see you tonight. You ready sweetheart?”

Villanelle kissed Eve’s nose “Yes baby let’s go!”

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Eve and Villanelle walked down the street after getting some lunch and Villanelle squealed as she saw a beautiful floral kite in the window of a designer toy shop. “Amelie would love that! I have to get it. Would you come to the park and fly it with us when she comes to visit in a couple of weeks?”

Eve melted at her lover’s excited expression. Villanelle had told her a few nights ago of the little girl Antony had conceived on a one night stand during their open marriage. The little girl he had done the right thing by and become a father to and Villanelle by extension had become close to her in the process even after she ended the marriage. A year earlier Eve never would have been able to picture her with a child but after seeing photos of and hearing about Katya and the fact that Villanelle had essentially raised her, after seeing how soft and sweet her beautiful girl really was when she was comfortable it didn’t surprise her. And when she’d seen the picture of the adorable little girl wearing oversized designer sunglasses and wrapped in one of Villanelle’s glamorous coats playing dress ups she certainly did look adorable.

“I would love that sweetheart. I’m looking forward to meeting her.” Eve said as Villanelle took her hand and excitedly dragged her into the toy shop.

And she was looking forward to meeting the little girl, if not a bit nervous. She’d told herself she wasn’t a kid person. She’d told Niko she wasn’t. She’d told the same story to herself and others so often that she could almost believe it…..almost. It had been easier than the truth. Than the reality. Than the pain. Was it possible to be looking forward to meeting the child and dreading it all at the same time?

“Argh that stupid therapy session” Eve groaned inwardly. It had her all messed up. Why now, why were all those memories popping up at that time of all times when things were so good with her beautiful girl and the future seemed bright. She stood in a daze and didn’t even register Villanelle coming back to her.

“Eve? Cherie are you alright? I got the kite” Villanelle asked attentively and Eve shook herself out of it. “Sweet baby, always looking out for me!” she said adoringly as she snuggled into Villanelle’s side and they walked out of the shop.

“So you have hair and make-up soon. I’m so excited to celebrate your birthday with you Roxie.” Eve said genuinely and Villanelle gently kissed her.

“I’m so excited to have you there. I’ve laid out an outfit on the bed for you!”

Eve laughed ‘Of course you have my beautiful girl! You know that people see me now and can’t believe how stylish I look?”

“But not in that sweater right?” Villanelle teased her and Eve slapped her “Cheeky girl”

Villanelle laughed and threw her arms around Eve “I love you my Evie. You’d tell me if something was wrong wouldn’t you?” she asked, getting a feeling something wasn’t right with her love.

Eve took a deep breath, touched by Villanelle’s concern and determined to control her emotions. “Of course I would sweetheart. Now you don’t want to be late. Give me your ridiculously expensive kite and Off you go!” Eve pulled back from Villanelle and kissed her nose.

“Okay!” Villanelle said as she handed Eve the kite. “I love you baby!” Eve cupped her young lovers face. ‘I love you too!”

As Villanelle walked away Eve called out to her “Roxie!”

Villanelle turned around and Eve smiled at her sassily ‘Bitch you’re the most precious thing in the world to me!”

Villanelle broke into a smile of absolute delight and chuckled as she called out “Bitch so are you!”

Eve watched her beautiful girl walk away and threaded her hands through her hair in frustration silently cursing herself. “Get your shit together Eve!”