Title: Foreign Tongues
Feedback address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Date in Calendar: 23 December 2005
Fandom: Aeon Flux [tv show]
Summary: Aeon needs some help with a little job, but Una's mind isn't on working. Takes place a month before the episode Isthmus Crypticus.
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Una had only been at school for a month before Aeon found her. She was never sure how Aeon had picked her out; There were other linguists at the university, and some of them had a lot more languages in their heads than Una herself did. A treacherous little voice in the back of her head said that Aeon had picked her because she was young, and naive, an easy mark, but after their first meeting she didn't question it all that often.
Why question such good fortune as the attentions of one of the most amazing women Una had ever seen, let alone met? Of course, sometimes it was inconvenient, like the time that Aeon had strolled into Una's room while Una was entertaining Narek. Not that they'd been naked, or doing anything more than kissing, but it had definitely been A Moment. Narek had never forgiven Aeon for interrupting and then having the gall to not even introduce herself, and he'd never forgiven Una for not making up for it somehow.
The truth was that Una really didn't want Narek around much when Aeon started coming around. He'd been so different when she met him, not at all like the boys in her neighborhood. The clothes he wore, the music he listened to, the way he acted, it had all seemed so captivating. Compared to Aeon, Narek was about as captivating as a leaky faucet. Really, she just kept him around because she was used to him, and couldn't bear to hurt his feelings.
"I say get rid of him," Aeon told her one night, early in the quarter. She'd brought over a box of bits and pieces and an instruction manual written in Brinician, which Una had only ever seen twice.
"Huh?" Una looked up. The manual wasn't organized in any recognizable manner, and it was making her head throb.
"Narek. Get rid of him," Aeon repeated. "You can do better, Una, seriously."
"Oh. Yeah. I know." Una sighed and looked back down at the manual. Aeon had been trying to figure out the pieces on her own, with little luck. "He's a sweet guy though, and he puts up with me and my birds. I'm lucky he's still interested."
Aeon left the pile of components on the floor and leaned over to cup Una's chin in her hand. "You're better than this, Una. You're stronger than this. Don't just settle for Narek because you don't want to risk being alone."
What was there to say to that? Una couldn't think of a way to explain what she knew was true: She was nothing special. But she wanted so much to be like Aeon, so she did what she thought Aeon might have done, had their positions been reversed: Una kissed her.
Aeon could have done many things. She could have pulled away, or worse, shoved Una away. She could have kept the kiss polite and then told Una she wasn't interested. She could have been horrified and told Una she was done with her. All of these possibilities raced through Una's mind so fast she barely had time to notice them because Aeon was doing the one thing she hadn't really expected - she was kissing Una back. And she was going about it with a degree of enthusiasm that Una hadn't dared to hope for.
Una was pleased, but not surprised to find that Aeon tasted totally unlike anyone she'd ever kissed before. At first it was almost exactly what Una had expected: Leather, a hint of something metallic, and the tea they'd had before starting to work. There was something else there too, something deeper and harder to name. Just before she could really taste it, Aeon stopped and sat back.
"Well, that was unexpected." She looked up at the clock on Una's desk and nodded. "We've got time." And with that, she stood up and hauled Una with her.
"Time?" Una asked, earning her an amused glance from Aeon.
"Before I need that done," Aeon said, gesturing to the manual and the parts it supposedly explained how to assemble. "Come on, girl, you kissed me. Don't tell me you don't have any other good ideas."
Una bit her lip and realized that she was still holding the manual. She set it down on her desk and looked at Aeon. "Well, I don't..."
Aeon shook her head and pulled Una over to the bed in the corner. "Una, you really need to stop thinking so much. Stop hesitating and just do it." She unzipped her jacket and threw it over Una's shoulder, landing it on a chair by the desk. Underneath it she wasn't wearing much, just a bra and harness that Una thought Narek would probably kill to see Una wear.
Wanting to take Aeon's advice and actually doing it were two very different things, so Una stalled by taking a moment to take off her shirt and set it aside, glancing at Aeon out of the corner of her eye as she did so. Aeon never made anyone guess at what she looked like under her clothing - what there was of it - but as Aeon tugged off her long boots and gloves, Una found herself admiring her anew.
It wasn't that Aeon was a great beauty. Una thought she was gorgeous, but she knew that not everyone had the same opinions, and Aeon didn't seem like the type for gowns and hair ornaments and fancy concerts. Not many people seemed like the type for those these days, at least not outside of the Breen elite.
Una peeled off her underclothes and left them in a pile on the floor before crawling onto the bed beside Aeon. There was barely enough room for the two of them, forcing Una to press her body to Aeon's. Narek had once called Aeon "that frigid bitch" when Una had missed a date with him because of a job, but right now Aeon was anything but cold.
"Your bed is lumpy," Aeon muttered.
"I'm sorry," Una whispered. "I just don't have the money to..."
Aeon rolled her eyes and kissed Una, stopping whatever she'd been saying. Una quite forgot what it had been.
It was dark out when Una and Aeon finally got out of bed again and finished assembling the gadget that Aeon had brought over. Once it was assembled, Aeon flashed Una a smile, kissed her one more time, and left without a word. Una sat down at her desk and flipped through the now-unnecessary manual. She still had no idea what Aeon was going to do with the machine, or what it did. She didn't really care.
When Una leaned back, she felt Aeon's jacket still on the chair behind her. She twisted around and picked it up, then shook it out and put it on. Aeon would be back. She always came back, and she really liked that jacket.