By ChicagoTunnelKid


To the reader: By the end of the episode “The Outsiders,” Vincent has fought with and killed members of the amoral band in defense of his home and Catherine, in the course of which he has been shot by a feral child. Father has dressed his wound and left him alone. Catherine comes to him, wishing to help him.

The actual transcript begins this story; “Inside Out”departs from the actual script.

This is the conversation they should have had…after.



 Talk to me, Vincent.


 I have nothing to say.


What you did was necessary. Let me share your pain.


How can you even look at me?


Because I know you. I know who you are.


You don’t know me.


Vincent, there are dark places in all of us.


But part of me feeds in that darkness,

and I am lost in it. Leave me now, please.



Catherine said it simply, with no margin for misunderstanding. She would not leave him.

His eyes darted up to hers and down again.

“Leave me, Catherine. I must work this through on my own.”

“No.” She resolutely looked back at him, firm in her commitment and unmovable as granite. “I acknowledge you may have things to think about, Vincent, but you don’t need to be alone to do it. I will give you time; I will give you silence; and I will give you my presence to remind you that you are not alone.”

She saw him struggle with a response, and detected shifting as he sat in the chair, perhaps contemplating flight. Hoping to derail such thoughts, she added, “And I will follow you wherever you go, so you might as well stay where you are.”

She moved away to sit in a chair that was in his line of sight: whether the point was for him to see her, or her to see him was unclear.

A book lay atop the tablein front of her. She picked it up and began reading.

Nearly two hours passed. She finished that book, and picked out another from one of his shelves. There they were, the two players in the scene: Catherine, seated, idly reading to pass the time; Vincent, seated, brooding and vexed.

Since she would not go and he could not leave, he did his best to ignore her presence.His emotions were still so raw that he succumbed to their muddled mixing with his thoughts.At first, his thoughts raced around in his brain, replaying countless moments of the fight with the outsiders. Visions of male bodies flying, bones crunching, heads smashing, and a woman’s body crumpling at his feet tore through his mind like a tornado. That was who he was. That was his accomplishment. Not the educated mind and gentlemanly behavior that others saw in him, but the raw power and capability to so easily destroy life.

Then his thoughts faded as more emotion sang through his system. His heartbeat played the drum of victory, an immense feeling of pride taking hold of him, his psyche exalting in his prowess.

He sat in the chair and seethed. He wanted to pace, to vent the pent-up energy that emanated from his thoughts, but his injury – and her presence– precluded that accommodation. Oh, how he wished to be alone so that he need not censor himself in either demeanor or action.

He knew what he was. Hewas not like those he lived with Below, and he did not need them to judge him. Nor was he like the outsiders, who delighted in killing, with no moral fiber or code to be found in them.

His darkness arose when protecting. When pushed into a corner, he would fight his way out. When his freedom was at risk, he would do all at his disposal to win it back. No apologies to be made. It was who he was.

He spared a look at Catherine. She sat over there. Although shekept one eye on himand the other on the book, true to her word, she was silent. He detected no worry from her, just presence and warmth.

Father walked in, surprised to see Catherine seated across the chamber from Vincent.

“Vincent, I need to check your bandage. May I?”

Vincent stared up at Father fora moment, and resumed his stoic look. Father knew from past experience that meant “Do what you must.”He quickly removed the bandage, cleaned the wound, and put on a fresh one. The bleeding was finally stopping.

He looked over at Catherine. Usually, the two of them sat close together, quietly talking, or Vincent reading to her. Here they seemed to be locked into some silent personal struggle.

“Catherine, I am on my way to see about some dinner. Would you care to join me?”

“I’ll eat when Vincent eats.”

Father left the chamber,still wondering what was playing out between those two. Whatever it was, he thought better than to get into the middle of it.


It had been some hours, and Catherine tired of reading. Stubbornness took time. She sighed, got up andmoved to the table and found paper on which to write out her thoughts on an upcoming case. She would not leave Vincent, but perhapsshe could accomplish some work while giving him the time he needed. She hadworked for about 30 minutes when Vincent spoke.

“Why are you here?”Stated peremptorily, with no accompanying changes in the tension with which he sat, she nevertheless took his words as a welcome sign. She determined to make the most of this opportunity.

She put down her pen and looked across at him. “Because what we have is worth everything. Remember?”

“I don’t understand.”

Catherineschooled her expression into one of caring concern and spoke softly. “Why does our relationship work one way, Vincent? Why do you get to help me through my worst times, but when you have a bad time, you banish me?”

The look on his face was priceless. Fury mixed with puzzlement. “Our relationship is not one way. You help me often.” He was irritated by her remarks as shown by how he spat out the words. Still, she pressed on.

“How? When?”She was honestly confused. She could remember very few times when she had truly helped him with something personal.

Silence weighed heavy as he struggled to recall. “You listen when I work through an issue with the council, or when Father has pressed in on me too much.” She noticed he clenched his hands, She was in uncharted territory, and uncertain of her path, but determined to go on.

She shook her head. “No, Vincent, I’m not talking about mundane, day-to-day problems. I’m talking about times when you hurt inside, when you feel as if the world has abandoned you or chewed you up and spit you out. When you feel everything is out of place and nothing will put it back again.”

She gave him space to think about her words; the effort it took him to follow her was clear.

“That’s what I’m saying you’ve done for me when I needed it, when Daddy died. It’s what I want to do for you. But you never let me; you never let me in.”

“Because you could not bear what you saw!” Vincent spoke sharply, standing up from his chair and striding over to loom above her seated form. “The darkness inside me is no place for someone like you; I must protect you from it.”

She stood, fearlessly facing him. “Vincent, I am not some delicate flower that will wilt at the first harsh word. We all have darkness inside us. I am not afraid of yours.”

“You should be!”  He turned away from her, struggling with his breath to control himself. She placed her hand on his right shoulder, feeling the shudders running through him. With great effort, he turned and faced heronce more.

His eyes were wild. They darted side to side. His breaths were pant-like, short and heavy. He clenched his jaws, speaking through his teeth. “You should be!”

“This is what you were doing,” her hand waved to encompasshis length, “preventing me, preventing anyone, from seeing the aftermath you face for killing. And this is but the tip of the iceberg, isn’t it? I can see the strain in you muting your normal responses.” She thought about that fora moment. “Perhaps if more in the community saw what killing does to you, Vincent, they wouldn’t ask you to do it so readily.”

“Who else could ... do ... it?”

She could see the effort it tookhim to form sentences. He stood before her, hands clenched at his sides, but ready. For what? she wondered.

“That is a discussion for another time. How can I help you now, Vincent?”

He spit out one word that reflected his desired wish.“Leave.”

Undeterred, she replied, “That is not an option. Show me your worst, Vincent. I promise, it will not change how I feel about you.” She detected a jerked head tilt.“That is what you fear, isn’t it? That if I saw what you have to do to bring yourself back from your darkness, I would no longer care for you?”

His look was direct and challenging. “I am ... not him ....when I kill. I am ...  something ... else.”The pain etched on his face nearly broke her heart.

“I’ve seen you kill, Vincent. I will never forget that first time you rescued me, moments from being shot. I was astounded, taken aback, and yet you managed to have concern for me, and shame for yourself in having me see what you did. That tells me who you are at your very core, and that core has never changed, Vincent.” She clasped his right fist, raising it up to bestow a kiss on it.

“What you do afterwards to help yourself honor that part of yourself that protects others while keeping yourself balanced in your core is nothing to be ashamed about or to hide.

“You are unique. There is no one else like you. You don’t need to pretend with those who love you, your family, or me, that you are just Vincent, the Vincent they know. Be who you are. We will still love you.

“I will still love you. All of you.I will not speak if it’s silence you need. I will hold you if you need my strength and love. But I will be here for you. You should not have to suffer this alone. And I owe you for the many times you killed to keep me safe.”

She stopped because she was uncertain whether he could follow that many words in hisagitated state.

His next words were delivered in a halting half-growl as he pulled his hand from hers.“Leave before ... I cannot control myself.”

Quietly defiant, she responded,“I will not leave. I am not afraid of you, Vincent. We are destined to be together, and this is what I am here to do for you. I am part of your balance, your core. I call you back from your dark side. I do it with love. I bring love to your darkness. When we are loved, darkness cannot stay with us. It may visit, but it cannot stay where there is light. And love brings light to all our dark corners. Love can pull us back from the darkness.” She spoke in a litany-like manner, hoping to soothe him with the sound of her words as well as their meaning.

She drew in closer, wrapped her arms around his right arm and leaned against him, her head on his shoulder. They stood silently, Catherine hoping her words caused him to think. He was still panting, still a barelycontrolled bundle of raw power and energy.

“Do you remember when Paracelsus sprinkled that hallucinogenic drug on you?”

A slight nod.

“I walked up to you and hugged you, and you came back to yourself. You told me later that you saw me lit up like an angel, moving toward you.” She paused, remembering the incident well. Father thought she had lost her mind when she went to Vincent while he was in the grip of the drug. “That’s my love’s light meant for you, Vincent. I’ll always shine it in your dark places, if you’ll let me.”

“And ... if it is... not ... enough? If I ... kill you... like the ... others?” The effort it took to speak, and the thought expressed, encouraged her.Clearly, this was a fear of his.

“It’s my choice, Vincent, my consequences. These are your fears, and you must face them as I must face mine. We all die sometime. I can think of no greater sacrifice I could make than to die trying to bring you peace.”

“How can ... you say ... that?” His eyes had lost some of the wild look, replaced with puzzlement.

“Because I love.” She looked up into that beloved face. “You have sacrificed so much for me every time you saved my life. You’ve nearly died for me more times than I want to think about. How can I not risk the same for you?” She burrowed her head into his uninjured shoulder.

“When I came back from Connecticut, I told you that I had realized that what you and I have together is worth everything. You said it, too.”

Again, a slight nod she felt against the top of her head.

She looked up at himagain. “’’Everything’ means both the good and the bad, Vincent. We may not be like other couples ... may never be like other couples.” She swallowed her disappointment. “But we can still share the good and the bad, help each other through the bad and celebrate with each other for the good.”

She reached up to cup his chin and turned his head to look at her.

“You say I don’t really see you, that I don’t know the darkness in you. Butthat’s because you won’t share it with me,Vincent. And when I say I love all of you, you treat my words like flies, batting them away in disbelief.” She looked down, collecting her emotions. “That hurts, Vincent. And it hurts that you keep part of yourself from me when it’s an important part of you.”

He gazed down at her. “How can I tell you what I don’t understand myself?”

He was back to full sentences,with less of a struggle to get the words out. Her closeness seemed to help.

“Tell me what you do know. Tell me how it makes you feel. Tell me why you hide from it.” She paused. “Just talk to me about it and, maybe between us, we can make more sense of it.”

He gently pushed her from him, gathering space for himself. He turned and picked up a paperweight from the table.Taking a deep breath, he accepted her offer, wondering if she would regret hearing his revelations.

“Do you want to hear how different killing can be for me?  How some killing makes my blood sing, like tonight? How it takes longer and longer for me to recover any sense of my humanness? Or shall I tell you, “ he turned back to look at her, ”how it feels to kill someone when you are keenly empathic? Should I tell you all this, Catherine, and prove to you that Paracelsus was not wrong about me?”

His gaze bored into her. He waited.

“How have you borne all that alone?” she asked. “How have you kept it bottled inside you and not exploded from the effort?”

That was not the reaction he was expecting. With hope, he continued.

“Catherine, I walk a precarious path. In many ways, I am a guest in my own home, here by the good graces of the community.” He hung his head before resuming. “Without them, I would be nothing but a wild beast, lost inside myself, living a doomed existence, causing nothing but fear.

“For me to talk about it, or worse, show them, would invite that fear. Their gazes would change from the loving acceptance I enjoy now to guarded tolerance, and finally, to outright fear. Because they would know what is inside me is something beyond their understanding. In truth, it is beyond mine. How can I offer reassurance when I don’t know myself?”

She placed her hand lightly over his heart, careful of the bandage. “Then you must tell me, Vincent. Perhaps that is part of what I am to be for you – a means to understand yourself better. You give me so much; let me give you this. Nothing you’ve said changes how I feel about you. Nothing ever could.”

She stood her ground, and he stood his. He acknowledged that his blood had cooled; indeed, the minute she hadheld him,he felt her warmth infuse him. Could she be right? Was she the key to his balance?

Catherine sighed. She had said enough, and she knew Vincent needed time to think about what she had said. He looked tired; she knew she was, and she had not been shot. She stepped backand smiled gently at him.

“I think I can safely leave you alone now. You seem much more at peace.” She stepped back, her hand hesitating to the last to leave his heart.She turned and started for the chamber entrance.

“Don’t go. Please.”

She looked back and saw the love shining from tear-laden eyes. Their gazeslocked as she slowly walked back and into his embrace.

She laid her head on his right side, careful of the bandage on the left. He wrapped his good arm around her tightly. After a moment, she leaned back slightly to see his face. “I love you, Vincent. All of you.”

His eyes closed in supplication.

“I love you, Catherine. You are light to my darkness. And I am whole in your love.”



Many thanks to JoAnn Baca for her excellent editing and advice.