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looking back all i did was look away
108108
title: chung ling soo's bullet catch
author: 108108
character(s): mostly jack and samuel; small ensemble
summary: the word is about there's something evolving whatever may come the world keeps revolving they say the next big thing is here that the revolution's near but to me it seems quite clear that it's all just a little bit of history repeating
author's note: major spoilers for finale. rewrite of the very end.



I.


Jack's feet travel a tacit path down the labyrinthine halls of the church, straight to the room where Christian's coffin awaits. Destiny is still too esoteric a word for Jack, so he shrugs off the almost deja vu-like feeling as he enters the room.

The stain on the window across from the coffin spills an eerie blue and pink light into the room. It's filled with religious symbols, most that Jack doesn't understand. Instead of trying to sort out their individual meanings, he idles around the coffin awhile, debating on touching the simple pine cover. When he finally does, the surface of the coffin is rougher than Jack would've thought and a strange electricity seems imbued into its grain. Jolts of electricity travel up his arm and to his brain and they force him to remember. The memories flood in and push the rest of his existence out from his mind. Reality wraps a cold embrace around his brain and he pulls back from the pinhole he'd been looking through to see the place he had been all along.

The island.




A.


The island swallows the man in black up in one gulp. When he comes to, he's lying in the stream before the cave again and Jacob is gone. He lifts his head and there is a woman stands before him, smiling wide.

There are jewels set into her cherub-like face and the light that floods from the source reflects from them one by one until it joins into one singular glow. She lifts a finger to her lips and the foliage around her shivers before setting into an eerie stillness. The hiss that advises not to speak is ironically loud in the silence the strange stretch of jungle that houses the source provides.

He ignores the command and whispers "mother" and the creature shakes its head "no".

"Come, my little Minos. Into the labyrinth," she says softly. He complies, taking the hand she stretches out to him. He's sure why she calls him this, but he follows as she leads him back into the light filled cave, her illuminated face growing brighter with each step. She looks back at him as they slowly descend into the light and he can see the sunspots that are her dark eyes flick down to his lips.

When he finally kisses her, there are no harps. No flood of dopamine to his brain. No mass firing of nerves or shivers up his spine. He simply is again, but better. Different. He feels nothing but intense heat. It feels like eating the sun.

"You will be everlasting and ever-changing. Temporary as smoke. In return for the power I've granted, you'll take me away from this place."

The heat rolls his blood to a thick boil until he dissipates like water into steam. He sheds himself like a snake shedding its skin and he sees his corpse float downstream. He emerges from the cave under his new identity, knocking his brother from his feet as he soars into the jungle.

Mother tells them entering the source is a fate worse than death, but he's finally rewarded with the title his real mother never had the bravery to give him: monster.




II.


Jack watches the church goers fall like dead leaves to the ground and the bizarre grace of it turns his stomach. Frantically, his eyes sweep the room, looking for Christian, but he isn't there. He was never there. Daniel Faraday, however, is still there and still standing. He looks down at his feet to where Charlotte is crumbled up on the ground like a used napkin, but he doesn't sob or even look as if he wants to. Instead, he turns to Jack and smiles.

"Jack. I'm pleased to see you again."

"I don't understand. What is this?"

"Seeing all of us here. Remembering. The universes are collapsing into one."

Jack doesn't speak. He lets Daniel start again.

"The island showed you another life, but it wasn't ever yours."

"So if this isn't my life. Is it..." Jack starts. He looks hopeful, but his expression deflates when Daniel's stoic expression doesn't falter.

"Heaven?" Daniel asks, kicking Charlotte off from where she had clung to his leg in the last moments of consciousness. "You've got to be kidding me."



one.

Jack's eyes snap open and he's lying beside the golden pool of water inside the source. He lifts his eyes to see Kate sitting at the edge of the pool, her bare feet lowered into the water. She giggles and the movement makes her face shimmer beautifully. He doesn't dare cross the room to get to her, but doesn't cower away when she comes closer. There are jewels set into her cherub-like face and the resulting glow of them makes Jack's eyes ache.

"Mine," she coos, taking his face into her hands and kissing his temple gently, "Now that I've shown you what lies across the sea, you will be my host. You will carry me out of hell."

"Kate," he murmurs softly. He remembers the place he saw at the heart of the island and murmurs, "Home. I know how to get back home."

Desmond was right. There's another world they're meant to live in.

She shakes her head "no" and leans in to kiss him. He lets their lips meet and he parts his lips for what is obviously not Kate. The creature kisses him stiffly and gingerly like it's trying to hold itself back from ripping Jack's throat out with its teeth.


III.


"There's no such thing as heaven. Now that you've looked into the source, there's only the island and your dreams."

Daniel gestures to the people lying at their feet.

"Too bad your dreams are all dead."



two.


Vincent lies down beside him in the bamboo field and together, they watch Frank's plane soar over the island. Jack holds the wound at his side, wet with blood and water from the source and he experiences what he assumes is death; his body going light and darkness inching into his vision. He smiles, satisfied that the others have left the island and wonders if he has enough strength to go through the source and leave as well for the world off the island that he saw in the source. He wonders if David misses him. Claire. He's missed the baby's birth and hopes she can forgive him for that.

Jack doesn't die, though. The darkness that he sees isn't a part of his vision. It's smoke lifting up around his head.

He turns his head to see Vincent cowering and growling the low growl of a threatened animal. A different sort of growl rises from Jack's throat and decays into a soft, mechanical purr. When he rises, it's not on his feet and a familiar ticking accompanies the movement. Jack tries to force the word out of his mind, but he can't help acknowledge it.

Monster.




B.

The first time Jacob sees him, his eyes go wide as sand dollars and the blood drains from his face.

"You look so unhappy to see me, brother."

"You- You're... You're d-dead," Jacob stutters, backing away. He remembers the cloud of smoke flooding from the cave's entrance, but he could've never imagined that the cloud of smoke could be his brother. Oh god, he just carried his brother's dead body home.

"Dead? No. 'Death' would be a better description."

"You're not my brother," Jacob says. Tears are welling at his eyes, but the monster finds a lot of difficulty in caring.

"Do you want to know what I saw in the light?"

"W-what...?"

Samuel smiles, his teeth baring like a wild cat.

"Home."



three/C. (cut at 155 continue to 314)


"How difficult would it be to let me go home, Hugo?" Jack says, digging his feet into the sand. He's sitting beside Hurley, watching the sun set on the horizon.

"Unreasonably, dude. I can't let you leave now that-... uh..." Hurley ducks his head, afraid to acknowledge what Jack has become.

"Now that I'm a monster?"

"Y-yeah and it's not like the place you want to go is even real."

"It's real, Hugo. You could go there too, but you're too busy trying to prove me wrong."

"You're totally wrong. You're gonna have to kill me to get off the island." Hurley looks back at him and the expression on his face almost forces a little empathy into what's left of Jack's heart.

"Alright. Fair enough." Jack stands, brushes the sand off his pants and turns to walk back into the jungle. Before he does, he turns back to Hurley to speak.

-"Do you have any idea
how badly I want to kill you?"-

Knowingly and with a slight smile, Jacob responds, "Yes." He settles further into the sand, seemingly amused by Samuel's anger.

"One of these days, sooner or later," Samuel starts, his eyes still locked with Jacob's, "I'm gonna find a loophole, my friend."

"Well, when you do, I'll be right here."

Samuel looks back out at the sea at the incoming boat coming in underneath the sun's rise to its midday position. He tries not to think about Jacob sitting behind him with that same smug smile on his face that he always had. He composes himself before speaking, wanting to avoid an outburst. Maybe more people means more loopholes. More chances to kill Jacob.

"Always nice talking to you, Jacob."

"Nice talkin' to you too."

After one last glance at Jacob, Samuel leaves the shoreline, trying desperately to dissolve his rage with thoughts of leaving the island to finally go home.



end.

Ben passes Jack on the way to the edge of the sand where Hurley sits. He nods cordially, but Jack just sneers at his politeness. The rude action just ellicits a chuckle from Ben and he continues down to the beach.

"Jack's looking particularly mischievous today." Ben remarks, sitting beside Hurley.

Hurley gives Ben a rough pat on the shoulder that's received with a wide smile.

"You can't open the gates of hell and not expect a little bit of hot air to get out, dude."


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