Not My Lover: Gibson's Gift

Deslea R. Judd

Copyright 2001

DISCLAIMER: Characters not mine. Interpretation mine.

ARCHIVE: No. This one is a private one for friends. I

haven't decided whether it will be incorporated into any

"official" version of Not My Lover.

RATING: R for adult concepts and some possibly disturbing

sexual imagery.

SPOILERS: To Season 7. Spoilers for Not My Lover universe.

TIMEFRAME: This missing scene from Not My Lover takes place

during Marita's confinement at Fort Marlene.

CATEGORY/KEYWORDS: Angst, Krycek/Marita, CSM, Gibson


FEEDBACK: Love the stuff.

My son.

When Alex first brought him to me, when I was

recovering from the pathogen in our labs, I had known

perfectly well what he was doing. We had lost one child; and

so when he found another, he had brought him to me. I loved

him for wanting to heal me; I hated him for thinking he

could. But I hadn't had the heart to send the boy away; and

somewhere along the line, he had become my son after all.

That was no lie. Probably the only thing I'd said to Spender

that day that wasn't.

Funny how things turn out. If Alex hadn't tried so

damn hard to put our family back together, at least Gibson,

if not I, would still have been alive. Because make no

mistake, we weren't. Not to anyone beyond the secure walls

of Purity Control. But then again, if Gibson hadn't been

taken with me, I couldn't have achieved what I needed to

achieve in order to survive. Think about that one too long

and you'll go mad, I chastised myself. And by the way,

Marita - think about it in front of him, and you'll drive him

mad with you; so how about turning off your brain?

I wondered how much he knew. Gibson, with his strange

gift, could seek me out, could find the truth, if he so

desired. I had blocked much of it from him, building mental

barriers to keep him from the worst of my suffering, with

little idea of whether they worked. It could also be that he

had quite deliberately not sought me out at all, so that he

wouldn't have to know whether or not they'd killed me. But I

didn't think he had enough control to do that. For Gibson,

exercising his telepathy was as natural as breathing. And

like breathing, it wasn't something he could hold in for very

long. Watching him now through the glass, huddled on his

bunk in that white, airless little room, I wondered with a

pang what else he would do, deprived of any kind of humanity

for five long months. Wouldn't he seek comfort in whatever

he could? Bowing my head, I grieved silently for the little

boy lost. For everything lost.

I opened my eyes. They were wet, and I blinked them,

breathing out shakily. God, my thighs were wet, too - please

let that be sweat; please don't let that be him - and I

pressed my legs together tightly, compulsively reclaiming

that space within me as mine. Control, Marita, control. He

can't see you like this. He might be a telepath, but he is

also a frightened little boy, and you're the only mother he

has left.

I went to the doorway before me, then turned back to

the door behind me. Still no guard; he was waiting outside,

as he'd been instructed. Will wonders never cease, I

marvelled; Spender had kept his word. I rounded the corner

into Gibson's room.


He turned to face me, his eyes wide. They'd been

afraid to test him, I knew that from Spender - God forbid

they toy with his unknown biochemical balance - but Alex had

given him the vaccine after the discovery of the pathogen in

Dallas, just before our capture. He'd be in Recovery Stage

1-D, I'd calculated; and I'd prepared myself for how he must

look; but even so, I couldn't quite conceal what seeing him

did to me. Didn't bargain on this when you adopted us, did

you, sweetheart? Still want to be our son? Because this is

our world - pathogen and vaccines that are almost as bad;

death and evil and if you're really lucky you might score a

few minutes or a few hours of love in between. By what right

had we let him in for this?

I watched him, looking for recrimination in his

expression; but there was none. His white, drawn features

were etched with a blend of disbelief, grief, and something

less tangible - something adult, maybe even something aged.

If he looked bad, I looked far worse - I knew that. He sat

up in his bunk, staring at me intently, searching my thoughts

for knowledge - probably unaware that he was doing it. So I

sent him images - fragments; the least distressing ones I

could summon. Those that would explain without bringing him


Well, everything's relative, I suppose.

I made my way over to him; oh, so carefully. Walking

was a challenge of late, but I put on a good show for him.

Each step pounded in my brain, and I was grateful for that;

because that put one more barrier between Gibson's gift and

what I had done. And when I reached him and sat down heavily

at his side, he fell against me, fitting himself into the

crook of my arm. I stroked his hair, reflecting with

something like self-hatred how skeletal my fingers had


"He thinks we're dead," he said in a voice that was so

low, so raw, that it sounded like steel wool on glass.

That didn't surprise me, but I felt my heart plummet -

and, side-by-side with that, a guilty kind of relief. If

Alex wasn't searching, then maybe what I had done was

justified. Maybe there really was no other way. "They told

you that?"

"I saw it in his mind. That man who smokes."

I shuddered against my will at that, the barriers in my

mind spreading open for an instant, one quick flash of him

labouring over me. Then I clamped them shut again, but

Gibson had drawn back from me. "Marita?" he said, his eyes

wide and brown, and, for an instant, so like Alexi's that I

could have sworn he was really our child.

I smoothed back his hair. "What is it?" Except I knew

what it was, and I should never have come here. I should

never have inflicted this on him. Thought after self-

reproaching thought flew through my mind, each one

incriminating me more than the last, and all of them on

display for him. All but the thought under the thought that

must at all costs be concealed.

He was watching me, inquisitive eyes suddenly alive

with urgency. "I saw something. Something real fast.

Something you're trying to stop me from seeing."

"No, Gibson, honestly," I said with breathless haste,

"there's nothing." He looked at me in frank disbelief, and I

conceded, "Nothing you want to know, anyway."

"Why did they let you come to me?" he demanded.

"Because - because I'm co-operating with the tests," I

said quickly, then cursed myself. He couldn't quite see the

truth; but he could see a lie.

"Why did they let you come to me?" he insisted. He was

staring at me, eyes piercing and disturbingly adult, flashing

with barely restrained power. He was so damn strong and I

was so damn weak, and I shrank back from him, just a little.

He felt it, felt my weakness betrayed, and he used that one

moment, that one little window to see. And what he saw made

him draw his breath in, gasping in a child's voice as his

mind was thrust rudely over the cusp of adulthood. Watching

him, I saw in my mind's eye what he saw; and seeing it

through his eyes, I mourned in a way I couldn't mourn through

my own.

From that strange, twin perspective, within myself and

without, I saw Spender push me against the tiled wall of my

room. I saw him drag the paper gown off my shoulders,

sliding it down my body, rubbing his body against mine,

stinking of cigarettes and something more basic, something

filthy and rotten that seemed to come from deep within him.

Arching my neck to look at the ceiling, so goddamn white, and

thinking of snow. Snow in Ateni. Alex taking me on our

wedding night. God, we'd been so in love. Like teenagers.

He'd made love to me a thousand times, and this could be one

time more, if only I imagined hard enough. Those unfamiliar

hands, larger and coarser and less sure of their ground -

they could be his, if only I could believe it, if only I

didn't look.

Except Alex had never had to part my thighs, because

drawing him into me was something I'd done as instinctively

as breathing. And if I thought about why I didn't now, about

why he had to push them until I clenched my teeth and parted

them through sheer strength of will, I might remember it was

the man who had killed my mother and my child. And if I

remembered that, I might have to scream.

Gibson was weeping.

He was staring at me in horror, his breath coming in

fast, hitching sobs. I was filled with remorse. Why on

earth had I come to him? Why had I made him my excuse?

"You did see me?" he managed, at last. "For

ME? How COULD you! How COULD YOU!" he screamed. He got off

the bed, and backed away, shouting, "I don't want you to do

that for me!" He took a few, lurching steps, and slumped

down on the floor in the corner, his shoulders hunched.

I went to him. I was weeping too, on the point of

hysteria. "Gibson, no, this isn't your fault," I said

urgently, kneeling before him. "I wanted to see you, and I

told him I'd do...that...if I could see you; but that's not

why. It was something else." He stared up at me, gaze

darting back and forth over my face, searching for signs of

falsehood. He was shaking. "It isn't your fault. It isn't

your fault."

Hesitantly, he put a hand up to my neck, touching my

jaw where *he'd* touched it, a childlike hand, an adult

gesture. I recognised it for what it was, a confused attempt

to replace one memory with another, and I loved him for it

even as a little part of me wanted to shrink away. "What,

then?" he whispered finally.

      I stroked back his hair a little. "They're going to

kill me, Gibson." His face crumpled a little, and the blood

rushed to his cheeks. "I'm not useful anymore. The

decision's already been made." Tears began to slip down his

cheeks at the same moment as I felt mine, and for a surreal

moment it was as though we occupied the same space,

juxtaposed over one another like two parts of the same whole.

I said urgently, "The only way they won't kill me is if I get

pregnant. They'll want to know, Gibson. They'll want to

know what the vaccine does to the baby."

"You want to make a baby? With HIM?"

I bowed my head. "There's no-one else. Look at me," I

said softly. I didn't have to show him the hollows of my

hips or the wasting at my breasts, though I had a horrible

feeling he knew they were there. These days, my ordeal was

in every line of my face, every contour of my body. "No-one

else would." And then I realised with bitter irony that had

Gibson been two or three years older, there might have been

another choice after all. Good work, Marita, I chastised

myself; you just managed to think of something even more

destructive than this after all. But it was a shadow of a

thought, thankfully transitory, and it was gone, blown away

(chased away?) before he could perceive it.

"What about the baby?" he was saying.

"I'll have the baby," I said. "I'll love the baby." I

cradled the boy's face with my palms, then drew one of his

hands to my belly where, God willing, our salvation was

forming even as we spoke. "This baby is going to bring us


"But what if Alex doesn't want us anymore?"

I drew him close; said with more conviction than I felt, "He


But deep down, I wasn't so sure.

Author's note: If you read this without knowledge of the Not

My Lover universe, you're probably pretty confused right

about now. Fortunately, there's a cure: Not My Lover is

complete, and available at