disclaimer: not mine
rating: hard r
word count: 1833
summary: they like to talk about things like vesuvius as though they never actually happened (they did. ask the men covered in ash).
notes: oh, it's apoca!fic time again. i feel sick and twisted for having written this. there's a lot of gore and violence and character death on a massive scale. there's some sex. it's not really all that ship-y. this is both zauberer_sirinand fated_addiction's doing. spoilers through 3x10.
in the middle of the journey of life I came to myself within a dark wood where the straight way was lost.
The thing to remember here is that they never saw Jack again.
They return just as quickly as they left, Kate staring at her feet as each step ruffles the underbrush, muttering under her breath all the reasons they have to turn around and go back. Sayid keeps his gun in his hand and Locke watches the sky.
‘We’ll return for him tomorrow,’ Sayid says, but he does look at Kate.
Shannon laughs as she jumps down from the trees. Sayid shivers.
Locke awakens before dawn as the flap of his curtain is pushed aside.
‘Go back to sleep, John,’ Boone says. ‘The time isn’t here yet.’
He dreams of a staircase that leads nowhere but down and his skull cracks on the marble steps as he tumbles head over feet.
The morning Michael and Walt’s boat crashed up on shore Sawyer shot Michael in the head.
Aaron had cried. So had Walt.
The morning Michael and Walt’s boat crashed up on shore the sky was bright and without cloud, and just as before, Sun was the first to spot them, a hand raised up to shield her eyes, she saw them out on the horizon.
There was a reception waiting for the two of them and the old boat and Desmond found their lack of distrust unsettling:
‘You don’t know who’s out there! You don’t know who that is! It could be Them – it could be – ’
He hadn’t said much after.
(Later: When Charlie tastes blood dripping down his throat and can barely breathe, when shards of broken statues line the palms of his hands, he’ll know that Desmond already saw this coming).
Michael had stepped off the boat, an arm still in that dirty sling, full beard, and Sun had hugged him.
Next: There was a gunshot – just one, and later, huddled around campfires with old airline blankets, they’ll remember this as peculiar – a spray of red and a scream.
Michael fell against the shore, white foam coloring dark, a single bullet wound to his right temple.
It was Sun who had screamed and Jin who joined her, loud, fast, beyond language (and there was blood on her hands, sprayed against her neck, and Jin, Jin, he screamed as she turned her head – close your eyes – Michael’s brains splattered across her face, a bad, messy mask).
Sawyer dropped the gun; ‘The doc deserved at least this,’ he mumbled.
Sun vomited into the ocean.
The thing to remember here is that Jack isn’t dead. He’s still alive, living with Them, and they have town meetings and barbeques and talk about President Nixon and Tsar Nicholas and Thomas Edison like these men are still alive.
He’s still there, he shares a house, a kitchen table, maybe a life (his life) with her. There are curtains he swears once decorated his mother’s living room, there’s popcorn made on the stove and movies still in black and white (‘this one’s my favorite,’ she’ll say as Hitchcock’s name lights up the screen; they’ll share the same side of the couch and eventually the same side of the bed). Eventually, there’s a baby, but it doesn’t matter.
See, none of this is real anyway.
Walt was gone before the sun set.
No one tried to stop him.
He tore off into the jungle, his yells lost in the island breeze, the trees.
(His words weren’t in English anyway).
The night after Sawyer shot Michael Shannon came back.
‘It still hurts,’ she whispered, hands clutching her stomach.
The rain began to fall.
In a stilted, hushed whisper Sayid can’t remember how to pray.
Charlie killed the baby.
Claire hangs herself. No one moves the body.
‘It’s the numbers,’ Hurley says.
He can’t hear her answer. He can’t hear her (Libby) beneath that much dirt, below the earth, and his fingers sink in easy. He thinks of broken lawn sprinklers and muddy toes as his fingers curl and he starts to dig.
‘It’s the numbers,’ he pants as the hole grows bigger.
And then, overwhelmed by the smell of her (rotten flesh, and there’s some bone, a cheekbone parting through decay) he falls back.
There are maggots.
He says the number ‘4,’ then stops.
Kate doesn’t talk to Sawyer except to remind him how much she hates him.
It’s always the one finger pressed in the middle of his chest, hard (‘I can feel your bones,’ she’d say if other words were manageable), pushing him back, voice low, harsh breath: ‘I hate you.’
Later: the words change, her eyes are still bright:
‘I want you to watch,’ she says.
Jack rolls over.
There’s a warm body there.
(Remember, remember – )
Locke wakes as a tiger rips away at Boone’s throat.
He can taste the metal.
Kate doesn’t kiss Sayid and her fingers bite into his bared shoulders.
‘Remember this?’ she hisses in his ear, her tongue, her teeth, curling around the lobe.
She pulls back, and there are dark eyes, wide, confused, and when he says, ‘you’re not – you’re not her,’ she laughs. He shivers.
Dropping on her knees, a dry twig scraping her shin, the words ‘I can be,’ get lost as she wraps her mouth around the head of his cock.
Sun quit eating. Jin brought her fruit and fish, shaking hands and rough pleading.
Sun quit eating and when she didn’t wake up one morning, no one was surprised.
Charlie killed the baby in the middle of the night.
Nikki and Paulo’s throats were slit.
The strange thing, they will say, is that they both died with knives in their hands (with blood tracing their fingertips, with a smile on only her lips).
Eko came one night and he left no footsteps in the sand.
‘John,’ he had said
And then came the buzzing of locusts.
There was a day when the beach was quiet, still.
Rose and Bernard disappeared into the jungle.
Someone will whisper, ‘may God help their souls.’
(She left her cross behind).
There isn’t any rain and Sawyer lies still in the mud.
She grabs him by the shoulder, heavy, dead weight.
‘Let’s go,’ Kate says. ‘Let’s go,’ and she pulls harder still, her hands painting dark red along his shirt sleeves.
‘Sawyer – we have to – we have to go,’ her voice shrill and she’s noticing little things now, little things like that low hum in the air, the sweat dripping down the back of her neck, her hands – they’re red they are red and it drips – and there are his eyes, wide and glassy, unblinking.
‘Oh god,’ the words come out in a slow breath. ‘Oh god, oh god oh god oh god – no no no no no – ’
She shakes him once more. His hair slips down his face, hiding his eyes (open, Katie, they’re open).
‘You have to – we have – no, goddammit.’ Her chest hurts as she takes in a breath, her head cloudy, and Tom died in the front seat next to her and her Daddy was turned to pieces. ‘No, James. James – James – ’
Her hands are red.
There is a low whistling through the trees, the tall stalks of the branches shake.
‘Oh, Katie,’her mama is saying; ‘oh, Katie. Look at this pretty mess now – ’
The barrel of the gun feels cold against her tongue.
‘You did this,’ she hisses.
The rock doesn’t feel that heavy in her hands, and when it comes down, when her arms flex and bring it down, the rough edge meeting his scalp, it really isn’t that hard. She does it again. And again and again and again and she watches the picture in red she paints.
She sits alone on the jungle floor, and they whisper, Rousseau had said, they whisper. But she was wrong, she had to be wrong. It’s not the Others – it’s Them – she can’t breathe – it’s the dead.
She can hear them, a broken chorus – her mother, her father, Tom; there’s a laugh and, yes, that must be Shannon.
There’s Sawyer. There’s Sawyer. There’s Sawyer. (There’s no Jack, he isn’t here – he isn’t dead).
‘Where are you?’ she screams. ‘Where are you? Jack? Where are you?’
She takes a deep breath (they don’t stop).
She grabs him by the shoulder, heavy, dead weight.
Charlie killed the baby in the middle of the night and if they had looked closely enough they would have seen the broken statues littering his camp.
After: he didn’t stop snorting until he couldn’t see.
A morning comes where a bird cries in the air, flying low in a long arc, and blood paints its way, grainy, across the sand, drips dark and staining down Jin’s chin.
His eyes glaze and he chokes.
(He cut his own tongue out).
No one heard him when he crashed the bus into the tree.
It rattled and it rolled and the blades of grass blurred as one long stretch of green.
‘You make your own luck,’ he said. ‘You make your own luck.’
The tire hit a rock, it bounced up in the air. It bounced and it bounced and it flipped –
There was a tree.
No one will ever find his body.
There’s a Sunday – or so the cheery calendar above the coffee pot says – and Jack asks Ben, glasses low on his nose, a crossword puzzle near finished, what they’re doing here.
‘Why, Jack.’ He takes a bite of his English muffin. ‘You think you’re the only prisoner around here?’
He leans forward, elbows on the table. ‘What the hell is that supposed to mean?’
‘We can never leave Her. She owns us all now and we must prove our worth.’
‘Her? Her who?’ The fan clicks as it circles above his head; he swallows, the hair standing on end on the back of his neck.
There’s a cold smile and Juliet laughs outside the window, there’s the slight murmur of conversation.
‘The island, of course.’
The morning Michael and Walt’s boat crashed up on shore they left it there behind.
Desmond laughs as he takes it, pushing it out into the sea.
‘Will you run away?’ The trees ask and Locke stumbles. ‘Can you run away – John?’ He hits his knee on a rock as he falls, scrapes his hand against the dirt.
There was a hatch and there was a way; there was a hatch and there was a way.
‘You lied,’ he whispers, lying still, waiting.
‘Of course,’ They whisper back.
A dog barks.