Word Count: 1,055 (this excerpt); 11,864 (all excerpts total)
Primary Pairings/Characters: Harry Hart/Eggsy Unwin
Content/Warnings (for entire story, not just excerpts): GRAPHIC VIOLENCE, RAPE/NON-CON (mentioned, not explicit), UNDERAGE (mentioned, not explicit)
A/N: These excerpts are all from my first EBB fic in the universe, they are in order but skip around through the fic’s chapters. Thanks to lanalucy for the beta. Enjoy!
1989, Kingsman HQ, England
Harry lay on his bed in the quarters assigned to him in the Kingsman HQ mansion and placed his hands behind his head, fingers interlocked. His gaze took in the relatively familiar details of the white painted ceiling. He had been Agent Galahad for three years and had saved the world, or at least parts of it, over half a dozen times. It amazed Harry how many megalomaniacs there were in the world, men and women who wanted to control the world (or parts of it) and didn’t care who got hurt as long as they were in control. Drugs, guns, technology, even good old fashioned swords once; Agent Galahad had stopped it all.
But now, Harry was waiting for his yearly vision. Kingsman agents were actually expected to still have them though the average in the general population had most people meeting their mates by their mid-twenties. Most agents never did find their other half. It wasn’t forbidden. If you found your mate, you weren’t fired, but it did mean the agency was no longer your first priority. It was why candidates who were on record as having found and bonded with their soul mate were not put forward for training.
When he had first come to Kingsman after being recruited by Agent Tristan, Harry had hoped to use the information, scanty as it was, together with Kingsman resources, to find his mate at last. But agents were not just discouraged from such a thing, it was outright forbidden. And when you were inducted into your seat at the table, one of the intake forms was a detailed description of when your visions occurred, both the time of year and what year they had begun. The agency couldn’t force you to disclose details of what was seen in the visions, that was one of the world’s highest laws, but they still did their best to control their agent’s mate searches.
This desire for control was what had led to Harry being in his Kingsman HQ quarters rather than at home in his end of mews house or on a mission. All field agents were grounded for two weeks before their anticipated vison date and for three days after. And all agents needed to be in a Kingsman approved location when the visions occurred. According to the rulebook, this was to protect the agents during their visions (and the grounding from missions made sense there) but it was actually to keep the agents from rushing out to find the location of the vision during the time the mate would likely still be there.
Harry didn’t mind much. He still desperately wanted to find his mate, but every vision showed his mate either in the field (where Harry couldn’t get to him) or in a locale that could be anywhere (like a movie theater or a kitchen in a flat). As a matter of fact, in his last vision before joining Kingsman, Harry had seen what he hoped was his mate paying some kind of bet. The other man had spent those ten minutes in a small kitchen making six different recipes that featured pickles. It had been hilarious but not at all helpful in locating the man. (But it had led to Harry’s name for the dog gained during Kingsman training.)
Harry always hoped to find his mate looking in the mirror or at paperwork with his name on it during a vision but had never been that lucky. He hoped that someday one of them would see that elusive clue that led them to one another. But as he got older, his certainties fled and became more of a dream, less tangible, and he let go of some of his romanticism. The same romanticism had led to Harry being nicknamed Galahad (ironically enough) by the men in his unit in the army, for the virgin knight in the Arthurian tales. Until joining Kingsman, Harry had been determined to save himself for his mate but with honeypot missions and just general life lessons of a spy, that ideal fell by the wayside and Harry had long since lost that virginity.
Harry sighed as he flexed his toes against the tingling and discomfort of the vision trance warning. He understood the reasoning behind the biology of it but it was still most annoying to endure when you were in place to safely start the trance and your body’s warning system still activated.
Then his view changed and Harry fell into shock and horror at what he beheld in his vision trance. There was no battlefield, no kitchen, no movie theater or street or classroom. All that Harry beheld for the full ten minutes was swirling, tumbling colors, shades of grey and black, like the most horrific of storm clouds.
From his first glimpse, Harry had known what it meant. Everyone was taught the oddities of vision trances. The swirling greys and blacks were a system showing your soul mate was dead. If a mate died before meeting, the vision told the soul in the trance by showing the mourning colors. Once the mate was reborn the vision of swirling colors would remain but turn to bright shades of red, yellow, green, blue, and purple, until normal visions resumed once the reborn mate attained puberty.
Harry was crushed. He was twenty-eight years old and his soul mate had died sometime in the past year. And, based on statistics, the soul would be reborn within the next three years. Until that babe was born, Harry would see these mourning visions, then the timing would change. It was highly unlikely the new child would be conceived at the same time as his former mate. Harry would have no way, until the warnings happened, to know when his new vision trance would be.
When the trance finally ended, Harry rolled over in bed, much as he had done following his very first vision, and holding his pillow as a lifeline, he wept. He wept for the life of the man he had never met, he wept for the life he would now never know, the stories he could never share of those visions, the bonding he would now be without for at least a decade and a half more. Harry wept until his tears ran dry.