Convergent

Con-ver-gent, adjective: Coming closer together.
They say that something as simple as a flutter of a butterfly's wings can change the course of history. What if Tris never took over Caleb's mission? What if the mission failed? What if Caleb was the one to die? An alternative (extended) ending to Allegiant, obviously with some spoilers.

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21. Chapter 21

TRIS

Tobias shakes my shoulder, nudging me awake. I look up into his tear-stained eyes, and stare blankly into his grief-lined face. "What's wrong?" The bed bounces as I jolt upright, my hair sticking up in awkward directions as I rub the sleep from my eyes.

"You lied to me." His eyes are narrow, betrayal etched in his composure as he looks away, staring up at the plain walls. "Well, not so much lied as hid the truth." I'm shocked he doesn't get whiplash as he turns to face me again, the duvet crumpled beneath his fingers.

"Tobias?"

"My parents, Tris." He sighs, wiping a tear off his cheek with the palm of his hand and turning to face me. "They're dead. Why are they dead?"

My heart aches as I shuffle forwards, grabbing his hands and placing them in my lap. "They were bad people, Tobias. They killed… so many."

"And that makes it okay to kill them, too?" He wails, pulling his hands from my grasp and rolling off the end of the bed. He stands up straight, his head bowed. His voice is a whisper, forced from his lungs as he turns once more to face me. "What gives anyone the right to take away another human being's life?"

"They hurt you, Tobias." I get out of the bed, standing in front of him and grabbing his arms. The white scars from his father's beatings stand out like glowing beacons on his skin, and I lift his arm to the light so that he can see. "Marcus and Evelyn; they both hurt you. Some of the scars you can see, but most of them were on the inside."

I feel my eyes burn as I turn away, and feel the weight of his hand on my shoulder as he turns me back to face him. "Prove it to me. Prove they were bad people."

But I don't know how. "I don't… Tobias…" He looks at me like a lost puppy, and I collapse back onto the bed in defeat. "I don't want to spoil you. You've retained your innocence… I don't want to pollute your mind with the things I remember. Yesterday... you were so happy. I've never seen you that happy, and your parents were part of the reason why."

"Maybe I let myself forget in the hope that you'd help me bring the memories back." His body is warm when he sits next to me, resting his hands in his lap. "Please Tris. Show me."

I get an idea, but it's impossible. The weapons room is heavily protected, the serums lab destroyed. The only option would be to go back to the city, to use the Dauntless compound and go back through his fear landscape. Would the computers even work, after all the destruction in the city?

"I'll try." I decide, squeezing his hand as I stare at our knees. "How much do you want to know?"

"Everything I've forgotten. Even the bad stuff, even if it takes forever."

"Tobias," I smile sadly, turning my body slightly as I raise my hand and use it to cup the side of his face. He turns his face towards me, his eyes glistening with sadness and hope. "You only forgot the bad things."

"Tell me." He insists, his jaw moving beneath my palm as he forces his mouth into a smile.

"I'm scared that you'll stop loving me if you're reminded of all the awful things I've done." I whisper, letting my hand fall and my gaze drift to his chest. He tucks his hand under my chin and forces me to look at him, moving his face towards mine.

His breath tickles my nose as he leans into me, his mouth caressing my cheek and then my lips. "I will never stop loving you." He gasps, kissing me again and again.

"Okay." I whimper, kissing him back as his hands drift over my shoulders, around my back and down until they find a place to rest on my ribs. It's wrong, that I let him do this in return for the knowledge he so desperately seeks, but I can't bring myself to push him away. "I'll find a way. I'll help you remember."

He smiles, nuzzling his face into my neck and wrapping his arms around my back. "Thank you." His voice tickles my skin, his hair rubbing my chin as I rest my face atop his head.

TOBIAS

"We're going back to the city." Tris says. She holds a mug of hot tea in one hand, a stack of papers in the other. "I looked through all the records, and I can't find anything to get into the weapons lab. The only way to extinguish the effects of the memory serum is to use another serum. There isn't a serum that will restore your memories, but there are some that can kick-start the remembering process." She places the mug into my hands, and the heat immediately leeches into my cold skin.

The bed creaks as she shuffles onto the mattress, folding her legs and spreading the sheets around her in a semi-circle. "How?" I ask, taking a sip of the tea. It's sweet and black, just how I like it.

"The memory serum works so that it only eliminates certain memories, which are pre-configured by a computer. In theory, it would be possible to reverse the effects of the memory serum by reversing the serum itself, using the computer to send the memories via the serum back into your mind. The way I understand it, some memories never really leave. They just get deactivated." I nod, trusting that Tris understands what she's saying more than I do. "Alternatively, we can use the fear serum to awaken that part of your brain, which is mostly unaffected by this particular memory serum. The problem with that of course is that your fears are often built on bad experiences, which have been 'put away'." I nod again, and she sighs. "It's really complicated stuff. I just wish Matthew was here to explain it all."

"Matthew?" Tobias asks, his eyes outlined by confusion.

"He was in the city. He used to work here, in the Bureau. His lab is where we got the serum that protected my memories. He… he killed your father." I look down, grief prickling my heart. The wave rises inside me until I manage to push it away, breathing deeply against my burning eyes. "I think that if we manage to obtain some fear serum and hook you up to the computer, we can create a simulation that reawakens the 'bad' part of your brain. It's not without problems, of course…"

"Let's do it." I say. I don't care about the repercussions. I just want to know.

Tris shakes her head. "I don't want to put you through that, Tobias. I've been through your fear landscape. Back in the city, when I first met you, your name was Four. Because you only had four fears. I don't know how that's changed, if this would even work, and we can't obtain the fear serum from here. It's tantalisingly close, but it's guarded by death serum and a whole load of other security measures. The easiest way to get it will be to go back to the city… and I really, really don't want to go back there. It's just... if all your bad memories are gone, and  your fears are built upon those memories... "

Her voice shakes as she speaks, and I reach out to cup her face in her hand. "I'll believe you then. I'll believe what you say." My voice is a whisper, and her breath brushes softly across my skin as I bring my face close to hers. The pale freckles on her nose stand out in the artificial light, the tiny imperfections that make her who she is.

"No. You have to know everything and there's things I can't and don't want to tell you. If we can break the bond that's repressing those bad memories and make them come back, then you might hate me. You probably will hate me, but it's a risk we'll have to take. Your parents… they died for a reason, but you need to see it for myself. You need to get your memories back. How we are now…" She looks into my face, her eyes wide with sadness. "It's not the same. You're not the Tobias I used to know. You're happy, but you're not you. To be together, we need the experience we gained from going through these things, and bad as they are I need you to relive them. I just need you to understand, you know?"

I nod, kissing her cheek gently and pushing the hot mug into her hands. "Drink this. I'll go look at the maps, see if I can find a quick way to get us both to the city and back. And if it's really as bad as you make it out to be, we'll leave. We'll come up with a new plan, find somewhere new to live. We'll blend in, merge with society and be human again."

She smiles, taking a sip of the warm amber liquid. "I'd like that." She murmurs, but I can see in her eyes how much the past has affected her, how badly she wants to leave it behind.

I turn to leave, pulling open the door of the dorm and stepping out into the corridor. At the last moment I swing back to her, poking my head through the gap of the closing door and smiling sweetly at her troubled form. "We'll do it. I promise."

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