s2309: (Kate)
[personal profile] s2309
Title: Tomorrow Is A Different Day
Characters (Pairings): Kate Moreau, Neal Caffrey, Peter Burke, Alexandra Hunter, Vincent Adler, Garrett Fowler (Kate/Neal)
Rating: PG
Word Count: 4990
Spoilers: For Kate's storyline through seasons 1 and 2
Disclaimer: White Collar is Jeff Eastin's brainchild. Not mine.
Summary: Kate's spent her whole life investing in her tomorrow.
Author's Note: This is for [livejournal.com profile] runthecon, for the prompt 'tomorrow is another day' from [livejournal.com profile] aragarna.
Title's from Avril Lavigne's Tomorrow. There are lyrics from Halsey's album BADLANDS all over the story. They serve as sort of introductions to the various little disconnected pieces. So this isn't exactly a songfic, buuut it kinda is.
Many, many thanks to [livejournal.com profile] reve_silencieux for the speedy proofread and the cheerleading!
I should mention that this is a slightly old idea, and it had around 300-400 words written in advance, but this thing be looong (LOOK AT THAT WORDCOUNT, GUYS), so I don't think it makes that much of an impact? I mean, I knew the direction the story was headed in, but I had very few actual words written in advance, so. I hope that's okay?

As seems to perpetually be the case with me, this story isn't complete. Yes, you read that right. Almost 5k words and this monster wants more. Piece of shit.
Slightly spoilery content note-like thing (spoils a character arc): I know the first sentence is what it is, but Kate isn't vilified in this story. She loves Neal. She means well. She's allowed to be angry, and think freely, and do things that may hurt Neal without her realizing it. Peter, who is the antagonist of her story, is on the receiving end of much of her anger, but that doesn't make either of the two characters evil. They're just different people who happen to have made terrible first impressions on each other. Not every human on the planet has to get along like a house on fire. And finally, I'm sorry if Peter seems out of character to you, but I stand by his characterization in this fic.
I kinda sorta borrowed the "ornamental, not functional" idea from this really painful insult delivered by the President to the First Lady on Scandal. I wouldn't have mentioned it, but I couldn't find any alternate wording, so. :P
This is a bit of a bricolage, but I enjoyed writing it, so. :D

Also, it's 2 am, I haven't given this fic my usual final once-over because I'd like to sleep, please forgive mistakes and clumsy phrasing and such. ETA - Edited!

i let him climb inside my body
and held him captive in my kiss

She loves him less than he loves her.

But how could it be otherwise? He somehow still believes in happily ever after and the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. He's still free enough to pour his entire soul into his love. And her? She is mired in the present. The rainbow probably ends onto ordinary earth. She is endlessly careful with her soul.

She should have gone to Chicago, should have accepted the steady love of a grounded man. But she stayed and fell headfirst into clouds and trusted Neal to catch her.

Because who can resist being loved so purely? Who is strong enough to hold themselves back from an offer of love so deep it could be bottomless?

She pulls him close and knows he won't let go without a fight (or a word from her).

She pulls him close but backs away from the terrifying power he so willingly grants her.


if you wanna break these walls down, you're gonna get bruised

She learns how to fight, because of Neal and Moz.

She was never a scrapper. She got most of what she asked for easily enough before.

But now Neal wants to keeps her safe and Moz wants to keep her ornamental and she wants to scream. And now, armed only with the skills she's always had and the few tricks she'd managed to learn from Neal, she fights her way into heists and cons and hopes like hell that her cleavage won't forever be her greatest asset.

It doesn't help that Alex slips past security systems and cracks safes and doesn't have to fight anyone for the right to con.

All she can do is watch her and long for that freedom.

And till she can find it for herself, she curls her fingers into fists and refuses to back down till that distant hope of a tomorrow like Alex's becomes a reality.

She's never had knuckles this sore before.


they know you walk like you're a god, they can't believe i made you weak

She recognizes the look in Keller's eyes. She's seen it far too often not to. The look that questions Neal's sanity for dating "this girl?"

She's tired of it.

When she's not conning anyone, she likes to be honest. And somehow, that's a crime.

She has a laugh like a bell, but she doesn't break the poor thing from ringing it too much. She has a smile that lights up the room, but she lets it out sparingly. She looks damn good in a fitted dress, but she wears jeans.

She hears the words left unsaid - she's a woman who wears what she's comfortable in, but she shouldn't be.

She decides that Keller is someone to be avoided and counts down the days till they leave Monaco.


cigarettes and tiny liquor bottles

Cigarettes are a rare indulgence. She hates them, Neal hates them, it took forever to quit in the first place. But today, all the mini liquor bottles in the minibar aren't enough to calm her nerves as she waits for Neal to get back.

So she smokes, with only the view of la belle Paris to keep her company.

Neal's running a con with Keller. That's enough reason for stress even without a third man in the mix. What irks her most is that she didn't manage to get a read on him in the few minutes she spent in his company. And in the absence of that knowledge, the fact that he's an associate of Keller's is enough to give her pause. And also, apparently, to make her turn to tobacco for relief.

She draws the warm smoke into her lungs and holds it there for as long as she can. It feels like being hugged. It feels like her own personal furnace, and it soothes her as the minutes tick past with agonizing lethargy.

One, two, three cigarettes are reduced to their filters before she hears the door open.

He's early. Strange. She'd expected to make her way through the pack before he returned.

She doesn't dwell on it too much. She hears him cough at the smoke in the room, hears his jacket and bag return to their assigned spots on the sofa, and lets the tight coil of tension in her stomach unravel completely.

"You're early," she remarks, a touch of relief bleeding into her voice, stubbing out cigarette number four before she's tempted to finish it.

When the expected answer of "Is that a problem?" doesn't arrive, she turns, worried.

He's standing near the sofa, listless, a picture of distress.

"Neal?" She makes her way across the room so she can see his face better. But once she's standing in front of him, she's not so sure of what to do. He begins to pace and down frantically, his gaze darts around wildly, he's breathing too fast, his hands are shaking. She could hug him, but she doesn't know if he'd welcome the touch. She could try to talk to him, but she doesn't know what happened, much less what she should say.

"Neal," she tries again. She doesn't ask him to talk - she might force him into talking before he's ready to, and that's not what she wants. She tries to meet his eyes, offers a hand for him to take.

He whirls around abruptly, heads straight for her and hides himself in her arms. His ragged breaths rush past her ear. She can feel him shaking, and she tries her hardest to absorb some of it, share the weight.

She doesn't let herself be scared. Neal's here. And whatever it is, they have time to plan an escape.

"He killed him," Neal whispers eventually. "Keller. Johnson. Johnson's dead. And we left him in an alley and I ran and I've got the painting and now he'll kill me."

Kate closes her eyes tight and tries earnestly to wish that she didn't see this coming.

"I've got you," she says, because It's okay may sound nice but it isn't true. "I'm here. And I'm staying right here for as long as you need me to."

Neal breaks away suddenly, eyes wide with fear. "Stay? We can't stay. Keller knows where we are, we have to go." He dashes a few tears off his face, retrieves their little suitcase, and begins to throw the few things they scattered around the hotel room into it.

When only the painting is left, Neal stops, lost. His hand hovers over it for a long moment.

"Leave it," Kate decides. "He can take it when he gets here."

Neal nods absently. He zips up the suitcase, hefts it up with one hand, holds out the other to her.

She takes it.

They dart through Paris like fugitives. Neal buys them tickets for the metro in cash, just in case Keller tries to find them by their credit cards. They don't slow down till they're on the train, headed for the airport.

"You'll feel better tomorrow," she murmurs as she wraps her arms around his and leans on his shoulder.

"I hope so, Kate. I really do."


i know you wanna go to heaven but you're human tonight

They always kiss after sex. It's non-negotiable at this point. He may be on the verge of falling asleep, she may want to shower, but without that final kiss, everything feels incomplete.

Not today. Today, they're just lying next to each other, waiting for this nasty feeling to pass.

Neal props himself up on one elbow and leans over, but she turns her face away.

"No. We do not half-ass the kiss."

He flops back onto the bed with a sigh.

"Can we... try again?" he asks eventually.

"You've got to be joking."


"That was..."

"Bad?" he supplies tentatively.

"The worst sex ever." She abruptly dissolves into giggles.

"It's not funny!" Neal says, indignant.

"It's horribly funny," she counters, making herself laugh even more.

Neal tries his hardest to look at her like she's lost her marbles, right up until he ditches his own and joins her in helpless laughter.

She catches his eye mid-laugh, and somehow, that sobers her mood.

Neal notices and follows suit. "What is it?" he asks softly.

She leans forward and kisses him, her lips gentle and languid against his, her tongue reaching for his just a little.

Ahhh. There it is.


didn't know where i was running to but i won't look back

Kate wakes up to an empty apartment.

That damned yellow flower is still on the table. She crushes it and flings it into a nearby dustbin.

There's no note on the table. No explanation. Just the assumption that she knows how important the music box is.

She grits her teeth and flings open the cupboard.

Neal's travel bag isn't there.

He picked Copenhagen.

She grabs a few clothes, tosses them into her purse, takes an apple from the countertop and leaves.


don't belong to no city, don't belong to no man

She drifts from city to city, breaks into museum after museum, steals jewel after priceless jewel, forges painting after painting. Not a single city tempts her into setting anchor.

Also, she has a con man to avoid.

Hale, somehow, is the only person she met through Neal that she stays in touch with. She asks him to keep it quiet and believes him when he swears upon his honour as a gentleman.

She makes him and herself a tidy sum of money with forgeries and solo heists. (She doesn't even want to try to trust someone else.) Nothing grand, just enough to keep paying the bills and buying the occasional treat.

She liked that dream of the villa on the Cote d'Azure, but without someone to share it with, it loses its appeal.

Not for Neal, though. Through the grapevine, she hears tales of heist after impressive heist, of infallible security systems brought to their knees, of pieces of impossible value and beauty.

He's moved on, she realizes. That's okay, though. She can deal with that, possibly even stop hiding.

And then he steals the Raphael. Their Raphael.

She doesn't know what to think anymore.

Briefly, she entertains the idea of letting her guard down, letting him find her. But she can't take that risk. Not now. Maybe someday, after she's had a little time to come to terms with the idea that he might still care.

She packs her bags and makes for New Orleans.


there's no use crying about it

He found her.

Or, she thought he found her. It turns out that he was merely allowed to. They were given a moment out of the goodness of someone's heart, and then he was whisked away into the justice system.

Now she's standing by a storage container full of things that could incriminate her, and an FBI agent (Burke, at that) not more than a few feet away.

"You really had him tying himself into knots for you, huh?"

She doesn't say a thing. She can't risk it. Neither for herself, nor for Neal.

"Is that a forgery of Raphael's St. George and the dragon?"

"Only if I pass it off as the original," she says coolly.

"You know, I'd bet that the painting isn't the only illegal-"

"Allegedly illegal."

"-Illegal thing in that container, but I'll let it slide."

"Thank you," she says carefully.

Peter acknowledges her words with a nod. "Do him and yourself a favour. Let him off the hook. The poor guy stole an entire treasure for you. And if even that wasn't enough, why aren't you letting him go?"

She freezes in place. There's a dangerous anger reaching for her, but she shuts it out, because if she loses it right now, she could wreck everything. He might decide to go back on his word and search the container. He might put in a bad word with the judge trying Neal's case. He's currently in a position powerful enough to destroy a hell of a lot of things she values in her life, so she can't say a word.

He waits for a reaction, for a little while. Eventually, he gives up and walks out. With a goddamn lollipop sticking out of his mouth.

It takes her five full minutes to let go of her rage.


now she's so devoid of colour she don't know what it means

She feels like she bleeds out part of her soul every time she passes through those prison gates.

And the payoff is not enough. It's not enough to see Neal through a sheet of glass, to reach out for his hand and be stopped by a cold barrier, to share only words and nothing more.

She doesn't even know why she's doing this. She doesn't owe him a thing. She doesn't love him like she used to. She's not even sure if she can trust him with her heart again.

But come Wednesday evening, she finds herself outside the gates of the correctional centre in which Neal's being housed. She goes through the security checks and spends an hour in a room by herself with Neal gazing at her though what may as well be a brick wall.

(Except that he leaves a warmth in her chest that stays even when winter rolls around. Except that he makes her laugh. Except that somehow, after everything, she cares.)

She really doesn't understand herself sometimes.


every single night, pray the sun'll rise
every single time, make a compromise

"He's okay," she tells Alex when she comes skulking around.

"I'm not here to ask about him," Alex says with an irritated little frown at the corner of her mouth. "I'm here for your criminal expertise. I have a job lined up, and I could use an extra set of hands."

"Museum or residential?"

"Museum. Security system's not too shabby."

"What's my cut?"

"Thirty five. I'm willing to go as high as forty."

Kate frowns. This sounds too good to be true. She doesn't get bright rays of sunshine, not without a catch of some kind. "And I'm your favourite person in the world because...?"

Alex shifts uncomfortably. "Call it an apology."

Kate raises an eyebrow.

"Look, I had no idea Neal didn't tell you about Copenhagen. We planned the heist with you in mind. I figured you knew."

She wishes she hadn't asked. Or that Alex had spouted some nonsense about honour among thieves. If it was Mozzie, she'd hope for a Dickens quote.

Alex leans just a little closer to her.

Here comes the hard sell.

"There's a safe that needs cracking."

Now her interest is piqued. "Traditional?" she asks.

"You think I'd use this as a peace offering if it had a keypad?"

She smiles. It's not the best deal in the world, but she can work with it.


i sold my soul to a three piece, and he told me i was holy

The light is gentle on the lines of his suit, as though he's merely reading the titles of the books on the shelves. It's gentle on the angles of her body, as if she's seated here of her own free will. It's soft on the dust, swirling, dancing, as though the two of them aren't concealing edges made of diamonds and nails made of knives.

He's looking away because it's more effective than staring her down. He may be intimidating, but he's short. And he knows her well enough to know that if he tries to intimidate her physically, she'll use her height and her heels to turn the tables. So he plays to his strengths.

She's trying to make a choice between yes and no, where yes means she hurts the person she loves most, and no means she leaves in a body bag.

"If you hurt Neal, I stop cooperating," she says eventually.

Vincent Adler turns and smiles at her cheerfully. "You will do exactly as I say."

She doesn't disagree. It's far too dangerous.

"You will stay out of his reach till you drive him mad. You will leave him so hopeless that he'll dance to the tune I set out of sheer desperation. You will get me what I want."

"And then you'll let us go," she states flatly. it's a demand, not a request.

"What has happened to you, my dear Kate?"

Kate doesn't blink. She nearly did - she hadn't expected him to change tack so abruptly, but she's controlled enough that none of her surprise shows on her face.

When she doesn't offer anything in response, he continues, "You used to be so well settled in the filth of the upper class. And now you're almost... holy."

"I fell in love with an idealist," she says simply. I was robbed of everything I held dear, and you stole some of it, she bottles up and stores away for a day when he doesn't have all the power.

He narrows his eyes and considers for a moment. "I'll let you go," he decides. He may have decided just that second. He may have decided before she even entered the room. It doesn't matter.

What does matter is if he's being truthful or not. But for now, Kate takes him at face value. She closes one hand on her handbag, rises from her chair, and looks straight at Adler. "Great," she says curtly, and heads for the door.

"Where are you going?"

She doesn't stop. "We're done here."

"I have yet to inform you of the exact means by which you'll be torturing the young man in question."

"Believe me, Vincent, I know exactly what has to be done." And it's going to hurt her plenty while she's doing it. She doesn't need to hash it out with Adler.

She catches Adler's supercilious smile in a conveniently placed mirror. He seems to think he's managed to seduce her back to the 'filth', as he called it.

She leaves him blind to his ignorance.


clinging to a little bit of spine

Breaking up with Neal doesn't hurt because she doesn't let it, and because she isn't, not really. She's signalling him towards a rendezvous. They're coming together, not falling apart.

She keeps telling herself that till he gets himself arrested again.

Was it too obscure? Did he not see it? Did he really think that after everything, she'd suddenly up and decided to give up on them?

Who says, "Adios, Neal, it's been real," during a breakup anyway? Who rhymes while breaking up with someone?

She's so close to tears. Closer than she's been in the past four years, and that's saying a lot, considering everything that's happened. She's suffered so many hurts laid one after the other on her soul. They've tried to unravel her, but she's still standing.

This will not break her. There is still hope. She will not cry.

(For the first time in four years, she cries. Then she dries her tears and begins to weave backup plans for her backup plans. There's always something to be done.)


for you, i know i'd even try to turn the tide

There's an empty warehouse in San Diego.

Neal told her about it. Except that in Neal's stories, it was never empty. It was filled to the brim with the treasures he considered too valuable to part with, or items that were too hot to fence.

There's an empty warehouse in San Diego, and she's standing in the middle of it right now.

He never trusted her.

Even rats haven't dignified this place with a colony.

She doesn't let herself be disappointed. She'd expected setbacks. Granted, this wasn't one of them, but she didn't foresee smooth sailing. So it's going to be a little more difficult to deliver the music box than she thought. So what? She'll figure something out. She has to, so she can get the target off both their backs, give them a real shot at a peaceful life.

She doesn't even want the Cote d'Azure anymore. A shoebox apartment with an endless supply of cheap wine and pizza would suffice. As long as he's there.

And maybe, they'll learn to trust each other.


i'm meaner than my demons

She sees Fowler coming from a mile off.

She knows exactly why Adler set Fowler on her, but just for this day, if she really was about to find the music box, she needed to fly under the radar. It's embarrassing that he's managed to track her down, but at least she isn't caught off guard by the idiot.

She'd have to be blind to be caught off guard. The tails he set on her are careless and easy to spot (whether on purpose, as some sort of intimidation strategy, or simply by virtue of being bumbling lawmen, she doesn't know). She's seen no less than three black sedans. And, right now, he's alighting from one of them.

She ducks into a bank that she made sure was two steps away from her. She slips her hand into her purse, reaches out for the debit card that she knows carries the name Kate Perdue.

Neal will find this. He may not have noticed her signaling him in prison, he may not have found his way to Grand Central station yet, but he'll find this. Or, well, Mozzie will, and he'll pass it on.

(He has to.)

She withdraws a hundred dollars, shoves the money into her purse without looking, and is about to turn and leave when she feels a hand on her shoulder.

She'll admit, it startled her. Even so, it's crude. And probably for show, which is why she says nothing on the subject.

She turns to face him, no expression on her face. "Agent Fowler."

"Ms. Moreau. I must say, I didn't expect to find you here."

"Somehow, I don't believe that. How did you find me?"

"A mutual associate of ours may have let slip a word or two regarding your whereabouts."

So Adler helped him out. No points for that. She's not impressed at all.

"I can't locate the music box if you're going to breathe down my neck the entire time."

"You mean, you won't be able to use it as a bargaining chip."

"Is there a difference?"

Fowler smiles greasily. "Allow me to escort you back to your apartment in New York."

"Is 'no' an option?"


He drops the forced casual front as soon as they're in the sedan, alone. "Look, it's my ass on the line here too. If you run off like this, I might find myself dead in a ditch somewhere."

"Sorry," she says. "I did what I had to, you know that."

"Doesn't make me any less trapped."

"I'll leave a door open for you when I get out."


"Excuse me?"

"If. You seem to know more about who we're dealing with here than I do, but what I do know is that there's no way out. You work for the man or you die."

"Not if you have something he wants," she says. Fowler looks at her incredulously. She ignores him and continues, "Besides, there's always a way out. There's always a hope for tomorrow."

Wisely, Fowler doesn't say another word.


i find myself alone when each day is through

He didn't hear her.

He heard the words she said, but he didn't hear her.

Why didn't he hear her?

Quiet. Stop thinking in that direction. Focus.

The music box is her priority. It has to be.

She doesn't know exactly what Adler considers 'staying out of Neal's reach' - she's been cheerfully taking liberties with that - but sharing the same physical space is probably a line she shouldn't cross. No matter how much she wants to.

She gives Mozzie her goodbye to Neal and disappears as quickly as she can.


i'm searching for something that i can't reach

She's not entirely certain why, but as soon as she heard that Peter Burke wanted to talk, she knew she'd be carrying a gun to that meeting.

She shares Neal's opinion of them, wholeheartedly. They shouldn't be as easily available as they are, they give terrifying power to people who often don't even comprehend it, they're deadly. But the FBI is corrupt and Adler's reach is long and she won't take any risks she doesn't have to.

She surprises even herself when she pulls the gun on Peter. Or maybe she doesn't. Because he's responsible for one of the worst stretches of her life, one in which tomorrow was just today wearing different clothes, and she wants him talking or she wants him gone. From her sight, from the world, she cares surprisingly little about the details.

Maybe five years of accumulated strain is taking its toll. Five years without a single support, without anyone she trusts enough to freely express herself around (her tightly secuured jar of unexpressed emotions is full to the point of bursting).

She's tired. And Peter Burke has caused much of that fatigue. She wants it, and maybe even him, gone.

When he shows her the ring, she's forced to concede that he might have some useful information to offer. But then he tells her to leave Neal alone (god, I wish I could) and to stop twisting his heart around (she feels that old anger bubbling away at the tips of her fingers) and she wishes she hadn't put the gun down.

And yet, under all those horrific comments, somehow, there's concern for Neal. Which puts them on the same side.

Damn it.

She provides him with a word of caution that he'll probably be too arrogant to follow. Oh, well. She tried.


she's ripped at every edge but she's a masterpiece

He did it. He heard her. He found Robert and met with Alex and stole the music box and gave it to Fowler and they're almost free. She's almost dizzy with relief.

Even Fowler came through. His all-purpose Operation Mentor could easily be repurposed to grant immunity to two felons. She's a little afraid for his neck, but this time, surprisingly, he volunteered it. Apparently, he doesn't mind ending up in a ditch if a few other people go free.

She maintains that he's an idiot. There's always a way out.

Now all that's left to do is wait for Neal in the plane (the plane, which Adler knows about, and the explosives, which he doesn't), fake their deaths, and then live. Peacefully.

It would surprise her, how small her dreams have become, but her bones feel brittle and she's tired.

Neal arrives and her hand starts shaking. Just a few short moments, and he'll be right next to her. She'll be able to hold him all she wants. Everything'll be fine.

Then Peter Burke makes an appearance.

She curses Fowler out in her head as she scrambles for her phone. He promised her that he'd take care of this problem. And yet, she's here, dialing Adler's number because apparently Fowler's not even competent enough to handle one small task.

Thankfully, Adler assures her that the deal remains intact. Good. If Burke messes this up for her, she doesn't know how (or even if) she'll manage to fight her way back above sea level.

A few moments before she puts down the phone, the pilot arrives in the cabin, says something about checking something in the back. A soft voice in her head tells her that the preflight checks are complete, even as she lets him pass by her. She keeps telling herself nothing's wrong, till he opens the panel behind which the explosives are hidden.

Son of a bitch. She'd paid him off. She'd trusted him with her life.

She runs for it.

The door's open, thank goodness. She practically falls down the few steps leading down and hits the ground at a painful angle that she really couldn't care less about. She shoves the ground away and propels herself forward.

And then something carries her further than she ever could have dreamt. For a brief moment, she's flying through the air, even as pure heat reaches for her and tries to pull her back. But her wings carry her out of reach of the flames.

And then they drop her on the tarmac.

She rolls onto her back slowly, dazed. Something just exploded, she thinks dimly.

Her jaw begins to tremble. She's so close to letting go. Breaking down.

And then, she hears it. Her name, being called in the sweetest, most desperate voice she can imagine. There's a flurry of movement before Neal's face comes into focus, worried and scared. His hands ghost around her, dabbing at a painful spot on her head and coming back red (blood, her mind supplies, that's blood), holding one hand firmly, placing the other on her shoulder, ready to help her up.

"I'm going to destroy him," Kate says softly, dangerously, as she gets to her feet.

"Tomorrow," Neal says, without registering what she said. His hand stays tightly entwined with hers as he pulls her into a tight hug (he's holding her, she can feel his physical presence, he's close enough to kiss, he's right there, god, she's missed him so much). She stares out at the wreckage of the plane and begins to tremble violently.

And she lets it continue. Lets herself feel. She opens that jar and empties it out into his arms and trusts him to keep it all safe.

She's dimly aware of Peter Burke's presence somewhere behind her, but she can't find it in herself to care. Neal's here, and she's alive, and she feels lighter than she has in years.

He holds her like she held him that day in Paris. He whispers in her ear and cries into her hair as she begins to plan Vincent Adler's downfall.

Date: 2016-05-12 09:31 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sheenianni.livejournal.com

This has to be my favorite Kate piece ever.

And how did you write this in 24 hours?!

It's perfect. Her characterisation, every single bit of their relationship - her in Monaco. Her smoking, Neal terrified after Keller killed Johnson, the two of them running. Their imperfect sex and the perfect kiss, the Copenhagen disaster. Neal leaving without a word and just expecting her to "understand". The way she becomes a con. Her deal with Adler if you can call it that, the way she so desperately tries to save Neal and survive, how in the end she just wants him, her and the crappy apartment with cheap wine and pizza. The way you wrote Peter from her perspective. And then, the ending. The ending.

What a powerful, amazing, breathtaking story. Love it. Love it to bits. I can't believe you told all of this on such a short space. It's fantastic. Brilliant. Outstanding. What a perfect piece of writing. I don't have words.

I really, really liked this. And Adler you motherfucker, you better watch your back!!!

Wonderful story.

Date: 2016-05-12 09:42 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sheenianni.livejournal.com
I'm almost in tears but not because you stole my breath with this.

She's so tired and so close to breaking, yet she's still fighting. So resilient and brave and imperfect. Her visits in prison, the meeting with Adler, everything. Her reaction after Neal is caugth again. And in the end she's drowning and grasping at anything to keep them afloat, doing her best when everything is against them.

And this time, you gave them a chance to win.


All those lines, every word of this is as it's supposed to be. <3 <3 <3

Date: 2016-05-12 09:57 pm (UTC)
sapphire2309: (Kate)
From: [personal profile] sapphire2309
Awww!! *passes tissue*

Kate is literally all alone while she's going through the worst of this. I mean, there's Fowler, but he's unreliable, and in the end, Adler has a sword dangling over his head, so she's all alone. She's a fighter if I've ever seen one. I love that about her.

Yeah, that was so important to me. I mean, I know how canon goes, but I literally didn't have it in me to kill Kate after this rollercoaster I went on with her. And she deserves a chance to resolve her anger with Peter and to raze Adler and his empire to the ground.

:D :D :D You've just made my day. Night? Whatever XD

Date: 2016-05-12 09:50 pm (UTC)
sapphire2309: (Kate 2)
From: [personal profile] sapphire2309

Dude, I don't fucking know XD. I picked out all the lyrics on my way to class, rescued the formerly written 400 words from an email, started writing in the break, and pretty much kept writing through a nasty ass fight with my sister, and a visit to a friend (who was playing video games, so it was all chill). There's more to this monster of a story, if you'll believe it, but I had to drop it because I just didn't have enough time. And now who knows if it'll be written? I'm very unpredictable like that.

Awwwww, man, thank you so much!!! I'm all warm and fuzzy inside now ^.^

Short? 2k is my comfort length. This was like a freaking marathon for me XD

Oh, he better. Kate has been toyed with far too much. She's ready to bite back.

Thank you, thank you, thank you!!! :D

Date: 2016-05-12 09:32 pm (UTC)
china_shop: Neal, Peter and Elizabeth smiling (Default)
From: [personal profile] china_shop
The light is gentle on the lines of his suit, as though he's merely reading the titles of the books on the shelves. It's gentle on the angles of her body, as if she's seated here of her own free will. It's soft on the dust, swirling, dancing, as though they aren't concealing edges made of diamonds and nails made of knives.

This is just gorgeous! I love this whole piece. *smishes them so hard*

Date: 2016-05-12 09:38 pm (UTC)
sapphire2309: (Kate)
From: [personal profile] sapphire2309
Thank you so much!!! That's a moderately edited version of a thing I wrote back in April - it's part of the 400 words that I grabbed and ran with for this story.

I'm really glad you liked it! This was a real labour of love.

Date: 2016-05-12 10:11 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] hurinhouse.livejournal.com
This is... fucking amazing. Beautiful blocks of language and soothing flow while cutting like a knife throughtout. Fantastic pace and in-depth insight, nit jyst into Kate, but Neal and Adler and, pleasantly - Fowler. So complete. You've either been thinking about this for a long time or it's all been bottled up for years and just poured out. Either way - thanks for putting in all this work.

Date: 2016-05-13 04:51 pm (UTC)
sapphire2309: (Kate)
From: [personal profile] sapphire2309
Thank you so much :3 You've make me all warm and fuzzy on the inside.

This fic's been on my mind every time I listened to the album BADLANDS by Halsey in the past few months, so it's sort of gathered snow as it rolled downhill? And I must say, I didn't love Kate as much before I wrote this fic as I do now. For me, this story was a trip inside her head, a means of understanding her. And I enjoyed every minute of it. It wasn't work. It was my pleasure.

Date: 2016-05-13 10:28 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] pipilj.livejournal.com
What an awesome insight into Kate. You included so many little elements in the Kate and Neal love story. Glad she survived in your story. Bravo

Date: 2016-05-13 04:47 pm (UTC)
sapphire2309: (Kate)
From: [personal profile] sapphire2309
Thank you so much!! I'm glad you enjoyed it :D :D :D

Date: 2016-05-13 12:37 pm (UTC)
kanarek13: (Default)
From: [personal profile] kanarek13
OMG, I couldn't read it yesterday because I had insane amount of work due today /o\ But now that it's done - OMG, this fic! There is truly only a tiny handful of Kate fics that I treasure and this one goes straight for the winning spot! So, sooo amazing, the story, the feelz, the writing, gah *iz ded*


Date: 2016-05-13 04:53 pm (UTC)
sapphire2309: (Kate)
From: [personal profile] sapphire2309
Awwww, thank you so much!!! That's really an enormous compliment and I appreciate it so much.

I'm so glad you enjoyed the story! :D

Date: 2016-05-14 05:35 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] veleda-k.livejournal.com
Eeeeee! This is so wonderful! I love Kate here. Her anger, her pragmatism, her courage. Everything is just excellent. I'm so glad this exists.

Date: 2016-05-14 06:54 pm (UTC)
sapphire2309: (Kate)
From: [personal profile] sapphire2309
Thank you so much!! I was really hoping you'd like this fic, and I'm so glad that you do :3

Date: 2016-05-15 10:49 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] treonb.livejournal.com
Oh, wow, this was amazing. I was tensing up towards the end, knowing how it ends, but it didn't end! Yay!

I love how you wove her into all those pieces of Neal's life where she didn't exist before. And I must have more Kate-Alex. I never realized I was missing it.

Date: 2016-05-15 11:26 am (UTC)
sapphire2309: (Kate)
From: [personal profile] sapphire2309
Thank you so much!! When I originally conceived the idea, way back in April, the plan was to follow canon. But then I delved deeper, and as I got to know Kate, I discovered that I really liked her. And I just couldn't hurt her like that after everything she'd already been through.

I've written a Kate + Alex piece before, and I don't think you've read it. Here it is! /shameless self promo.

Date: 2016-05-16 12:25 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] pooh-collector.livejournal.com
Kate's whole canon history told from her POV. Very cool and very lyrical. I love how you got into her head and laid out the whole story.

And, I'm very intrigued by your ending. What comes next for Neal with Kate still in his life and what comes next for Kate with what she's done with Adler? So many possibilities.

Date: 2016-05-16 03:05 am (UTC)
sapphire2309: (Kate)
From: [personal profile] sapphire2309
Thank you so much!!! That makes me really happy c:

I have a sequel outlined and ready to write, but it's taken a backseat to my WCPairings fic, which is on priority at the moment. I'll leave you with this - she wants revenge, and she may just get it.

Date: 2016-05-22 03:26 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] tjs-whatnot.livejournal.com
w0w. Just... w0w.

I have now read a total of two Kate-centric stories and they both are now two of my favorite fics in the fandom. ♥ They just make me love this fandom so much, that we have people in it that can take a character that--lets be honest--sort of got screwed in the storytelling/backstory department, and yet, there are these wonderful people who can craft such beautiful stories about her, tell us so much about her and in so doing, tell us things we don't know about Neal, and Peter, and sometimes Mozz, Adler and Keller.

There were so many lines of this I wanted to pick out as my favorite, or that got me right in the feels, or awed me with their lyricism, but it got a bit overwhelming after a while as there was just toooo much. ♥

Seriously, well done! If this is what you do in 24 hours, lordy do I need to read more of the things you've written with your own time table. ♥♥

Date: 2016-05-26 10:55 am (UTC)
sapphire2309: (Kate)
From: [personal profile] sapphire2309
eeeeeeee thank you so much!!!! :D :D :D

Yeah - I didn't really care much for Kate before writing this. She felt like an outline and a mcguffin more than a character, and while it annoyed me when people made her out to be a villain, I didn't really have a great idea of who she actually was (at least, to me). This fic has been like a first date. And I'm head over heels in love already c:

Awwww!!! You're making me blush.

Ahahahaha, no. I work best with a time limit and a deadline. Don't get much done otherwise.

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