Kat sighed and nursed a glass of scotch at the bar of the Terrace. After last night's....events, she hadn't gotten much sleep. After patrols last night, she'd come home to see Ryven and Rynnik, a corp mate, at the bar talking, so she'd joined them, hoping to relax and enjoy a quiet evening. The evening had turned sour when Rynnik started joking about the slave trade and putting down the Minmatar as a race, and Ryven had taken it personally, as his ex-wife was Minmatar. When Ryven had finally had enough he calmly asked Kat to fetch the guards, and she went off to go find some, and a medic. However, she arrived back on the Terrace in time to see Ryven break a bottle and drive it into Rynnik's chest to the neck.
He'd then calmly looked at Kat and said, "Sorry to ruin the evening." as security people restrained him and a medic knelt over Rynnik, who promptly took a knife that he'd somehow smuggled past security and buried it in the face of the medic then died. Shortly after Shalee walked out, grumpy from being woken and demanding to know why two people were dead.
Kat took another sip of her glass, then set it down with a sigh as Ryven walks up from behind her and meekly says, "Hey."
Kat turned her stool around, and quietly responded, "Hey."
Ryven shifted his weight around a few times then looked back up at Kat. "So, I've got something I want to say to you, and I understand if you're mad at me and may not want to hear it, but I'm asking you to hear me out."
Kat just nodded her assent, despite every emotion warring in her chest.
Ryven takes a slight breath and his eyes looked vaguely distant, "I know I fucked up. I'm not a good person. I'm a killer. I have been as long as I can remember. I had my first kill before my first kiss. What I did last night was wrong. In my own internal code, it felt right, but rationally, I know it wasn't. I know that. I know it and I'm sorry for it. I'll have to atone for it at some point, I know. I'm a man of extremes. I love fiercely and I hate just as fiercely. I'm not offering this as an excuse. I'm just explaining to you because I only want honesty between us. I don't ever want to lie to you. You deserve better. And truthfully, you deserve better than me."
Ryven's eyes were watery, but he continued, "But, you also make me want to be that guy. The fact of the matter is, I'm in love with you in a way I'm not equipped to deal with. I have to change in what ways I can, because you're worth it. So, I guess I'm asking you to stay." After finishing his speech, he stood there looking at Kat, waiting her response.
Kat took a deep breath, and was silent for several seconds, then quietly, "I thought I knew you, but that was so out of the blue that I just..." She sighed and paused to take a sip of her glass, "I don't know."
Ryven nods, a sinking sensation falling into his stomach, "You can't be sure how you feel because I'm not who you thought I was."
Kat just nods, tearing up as well, "But I do love you, that only makes me more conflicted."
Ryven's cheeks become wet as the tears finally fall, "You mean you love the man you thought I was?"
Kat closed her eyes, then whispered, "And how much of that man is standing in front of me?"
Ryven sighed, "That man is a part of the whole, I am that man, but that's not all that I am."
Kat opened her eyes again, "I think I knew, deep down. A man as gentle as you couldn't be an assassin."
Ryven shook his head, "Why not? We both kill thousands of people every day. It's just less personal when you do it in space with kilometers of separation from the act. The people I've assassinated were legitimate threats."
Kat shut her eyes again as more tears spilled down her cheeks, and whispers, hurt by that comment, "I know that all we do is kill."
Ryven shook his head firmly, "What we do has a purpose. It's in service of something greater than ourselves. The fact it affects you so just means you've held onto your humanity better than I have. But, I've been at it for a long time, and I never had any innocence to mourn losing. I never forget for a second, though, that what I do for God and my Empress means the deaths of untold numbers of people, many of which are just normal people doing what they feel is right, just like we are. It's senseless. In a perfect universe, there wouldn't be a place for people like me. Either that or I'd have learned some other useful skill somewhere along the way."
Kat looked back up, meeting Ryven's eyes as the tears stained her cheeks, "Every day I kill, and with every body I walk over is proof to me that what innocence I had died long ago. A while ago we killed a freighter in high sec, 25 catalysts, an obelisk, and their crews. And you know what we did? What I did? We cheered, we celebrated, not a single thought about the innocent crew of that freighter."
Ryven stepped closer, wanting to hug Kat, but not daring to. "It's a miracle we haven't all gone insane, isn't it? Or perhaps we all have."
Kat doesn't react, just says, "I want you to promise me something." To which Ryven looks expectantly. "If this is going to work, I want to know you. Not part of you, not a face."
Ryven thought a moment, "I wasn't trying to hide what I was from you. But, insofar as OPSEC allows me to, I won't keep secrets from you."
Kat nodded, "I'm not interested in operational secrets, so long as they don't get between us like before."
Ryven nodded, "I don't see myself being in that position again. I believe my dealings with the State are now officially closed, permanently."
Kat sighed internally, "It wasn't the state that was the problem."
Ryven shrugged at that, "If you're saying the problem was me, I would like to humbly suggest you adopt a more open mind. If I had been off in Minmatar territory taking out their installations, would we be having this discussion?"
Kat sighed, then spoke far more angrily than before, "That's not what I'm saying, and you're stupid if you believe for a second that is what I was saying! Yes, even if you were out in Minmatar territory we'd be having this conversation, because you would go off God knows where, for God knows how long, and come back banged up all to hell!"
Ryven nodded again, much to Kat's frustration, "I'm a soldier, Kat. I won't go off without letting you know, but I can't promise I won't occasionally have to go on a mission out there. I may even come back with some scraped knees. But, I can promise I'll be as careful as I can."
Kat merely nodded, "I never said don't fight. What I had a problem with was I would never know where you were, what you were doing, and most importantly, how long you'd be gone. It sucks just waiting for you to come home, not knowing if it'll be today tomorrow, or next week."
Ryven sighed again, "That was a function of my ties to the State, though."
"Well as long as it doesn't happen again, I'm willing to try."
Ryven stiffened up at that ultimatum.
"Do you not think it's fair of me to ask you to not disappear again?"
Ryven shrugged, "Nah. Your terms are fair. I just bristle a little bit when I get handed ultimatums."
Kat nodded a bit, "I'll try not to hand out too many then."
Ryven looked unhappy, "And I'll try not to put you in a position where you have to." then closed his eyes for a second while Kat finished her glass.
Ryven looked back at Kat, "I think this is the part where we either kiss and make up, or else go to bed and do the kissing part in the morning, hoping the sleep has improved our moods."
Kat, to her surprise, started laughing briefly, "I guess we have kind of said all that can be said."
Ryven managed a small smile, "Pretty much." He offered his hand. "To our room?"
Kat took it.
((Sorry guys (all 3 of you who read this) I got distracted by RL stuff and whatnot, I promise I'll try to update more in the future. Oh and yes the title was GoT inspired, ♥Tyrion!))