Title: Undo her damage, she'll be new again

Fandom: American Horror Story (Murder House)

Pairing/Characters: Violet Harmon, Tate Langdon

Rating: FR13

Disclaimer: American Horror Story belongs to Ryan Murphy and company. The title comes from The Pierces "Three Wishes."

Prompts: Written for prompt #31 (brittle) at promptwriting on LJ.

Notes: Set just after the events in 1x02 "Home Invasion."

Summary: Violet isn't quite as tough as she likes to think she is.

Word Count: 1015

Violet Harmon wasn't always so hard, cold and unforgiving. There had been a time when she was a loving, fearless and warm girl. But that was before her father single-handedly ruined their picture perfect family with his deceit. She didn't understand why her mother had agreed to the folly of moving to Los Angeles and she didn't care enough to ask why her mother was willing to blind herself to the fact that running away never solved anything.

She hated Los Angeles the minute that they arrived. The only bright side was the house. Violet could tell that her father hated the house but she loved it. People had been murdered in it, there was something fitting about starting over in a dream house that was someone's else nightmare. When her father frowned at the realtors' words, she knew that this was the house that would tear her family for once and for all. She knew that this would put an end to the farce her father was desperate to maintain.

It's not until the attack on the house by a bunch of psychos intent on reliving some crime that Violet begins to realize just how brittle she is. She's not really hard and cold but she's scared and fragile. When Tate enters her room still covered in gore, she knows something is wrong. It's like an insistent buzzing sensation that makes her flesh crawl. Yet she doesn't turn him away when he kneels at the side of her bed. She doesn't beg him to go, instead she slides out of the bed and kneels in front of him.

Violet trembles and decides to ignore the fact that the gore that still covers him just fades away. She blinks and in that moment it's all gone. If only she could erase this night away. If only she could erase months and months of lies and deceit away. That buzzing sensation goes away when Tate touches her hand and her mind stops racing around in circles about how wrong this house is. How she needs to leave right away.

As she stares into his dark eyes, Violet finds herself not caring that there's a part of her brain that's screaming this is wrong, this is wrong over and over again. Instead she lets him touch her. She lets Tate place his hands that still feel dirty on her skin as he touches her to make sure she's whole.

I was so worried. Worried that I'd lost you.

His words are reminiscent of words that her father had said to her mother not that long. It makes her feel sick to her stomach. Is she going to be a milquetoast who forgives any transgression. He killed for her.

I couldn't let that bitch hurt you. I'd do anything to protect you.

She lets his words wash over her as his hands pull up her nightgown. She tells herself that it's only because of the circumstances that she allows his hands to roam over her naked body. It's only because he's looking for wounds that might be on her body. Wounds that she might have missed, that her mother might have missed.

I almost lost you. I was so worried.

It's on the tip of her tongue to ask him how he came to be in her house when this all went down. But she shudders when his hands slip onto the curve of her hips and tighten. Violet briefly wonders if this is how her father convinced her mother to move all the way from home to LA.

He leans forward and places a kiss on the curve of her shoulder. He doesn't say it but she can feel his mouth move with the shape of words that claim her as his. Violet wants to dispute it but how can she? He saved her. If not for Tate, it'd be her that was dead. He pulls away and gives her a smile. She almost screams when she sees the gore coating his body. When she blinks her eyes in horror, it's all gone. Nothing more than a trick of the light.

She tells him that she's so tired. And he gently dresses her again. His hands on her body, touching her, smoothing her nightgown over her nakedness, don't make her feel safe. It just makes her feel fragile, it makes her think that those hands that are so gentle now could easily turn vicious. She bites her lower lip when he helps her to stand up. She sways on her feet, a mixture of tiredness, fear and nerves. His grip on her body tightens and she knows that she'll have bruises.

Are you okay? You know that I'd never willing hurt you.

Did her father ever say that lie to her mother because in that instance Violet knows there will come a time when Tate will hurt her, willingly or not. It's inevitable. And she knows that it's far too late to turn back now. So she nods her head at him and lets him press a kiss against her lips before he helps her into her bed.

He tucks her into bed and there's a part of him that wishes that he'd just go away, that he'd leave her alone for good yet there's another part of her that's disappointed that he isn't crawling into bed with her. He brushes the hair off of her face and she closes her eyes because she doesn't think she can handle this tenderness from him, not after seeing what he had done earlier that night.

You're mine. You'll always be mine.

She's on the verge of sleep when she hears his quiet words. Violet tries to struggle awake but there's an oppressive weight on her body keeping her still, keeping her body in that warm, safe place just before sleep. She never wanted to belong to anyone other than herself. Yet his words claim her and she knows she'll never break free.

Her last thought just as she falls asleep is that she's so brittle. Just like her mother.



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