Pairing: Winona/George, Winona/Frank
Summary: Exactly what it says on the can. Or the glossy subheader of the magazine special cover page. Thing.
A/N: I'm on a Winona splurge. More to follow.
Q1. Do you have plans for the future? Are you going anywhere soon?
(There's a slot on the Republic with her name on it, and gravity doesn't exist in the white, clean spaces of her dreams, when she walks silent hallways, thrumming with the rhythms of the engines underfoot. When the time comes -- and no, it's not for a long while yet -- she will make careful arrangements; she will ask many things of many people, she will pretend they are negotiable. Her mother will say: no. Frank will say: yes, wearing his charming smile like a bruise, but a beloved one. It's not a plan, it's a destiny, one that spills out like water or silk from the hollows her hands leave in her pillow, clutching at damp fabric in the warm gray hours of Iowa mornings, subconscious light years separating her from her sheets.)
Q2. It's been six months since the Kelvin was destroyed. Tell us, does the pain fade?
(In fact the pain boils down like fat. She worries at it, digging invasive moon-shaped fingernails into the skin covering her lopsided heart, digging smudged knife-shaped recollections into the skin covering her eyes. An impossibly solid weight, and she still can't close her hand around it and rip it out, trailing slime, which strikes her as unfair. It could almost be a spare kidney, but it's a) the wrong shape and b) useless.
She wonders whether this is just another pregnancy. The third child, as she understands it, is always worst.
She expected grief to mean something, once. This -- this isn't worth the dehydration.)
Q3. There are rumors that you're planning on remarrying. Are they true?
(She proposes to Frank each Tuesday, at inopportune moments, like when she's elbow-deep in his car. He has not yet answered once. There are other considerations. He's not beautiful: it surprises her, how the muscles lining her thighs tighten now at the sight of him and his imperfect bones, his eyes which are not for drowning in. Too much stained white, too flat a ripe brown around liquid pupils. Whereas she is full and golden, unblemished by dirt or Earthly sunshine, as yet. The imbalance it makes him anxious around her, shifty. Sweet.
They have sex in the silence where his reply would be; it's uncomfortable and messy and real in a way that making love to George, who always matched her, the perfect fit, could not have been. Probably this was not the way it was supposed to happen, probably she was not supposed to decide to settle for the lazy satisfaction and the soreness and the sleep-deprivation, all the rest of their days together spent on the insides of complex, comprehensible machines like souls.
She watches him break down and cultivates the nerve to hear him say yes under her ribs, like the potted plant positioned at the exact center of the sunlit square on her bedroom's bare concrete floor.)
Q3a. Does your son remind you of your husband? Is it hard, taking care of him alone?
A3a. No. Why would he remind me of George? He has my hair, thank you very much. No. He reminds me of stars, blossoming in the dark. [pause] I will do whatever I have to, for my son.