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"If the sky were to suddenly open up, there would be no law, there would be no rule. There would only be you and your memories." - Donnie Darko

The rain came down in sheets as the sound of flesh and bone colliding with flesh and bone rang out again over the roar of the storm, smacking and slick from the downpour. He was cold, inside and out...filled with a rage that he hadn’t known in years, perhaps a rage he’d never truly known. It was a primal drive to lash out and wrend, maim, maybe even kill...because this man had hurt one of his people.

An expectant mother. Claire...pretty, sweet Claire, so vulnerable she incited a protective sort of affection, but at the same time was far stronger than she appeared. Someone Jack liked...someone Jack promised to protect.

Her voice filled his head as he bent to grab the front of Ethan’s shirt again, delivering another devastating blow. Achara...she told him he was a great man when she’d branded it into his skin.

He walks amongst us, but he is not one of us.

He didn’t feel like one of them as he beat the man before him bloody...but he didn’t feel like a great man, either.

He felt like a leader, though...a king or an emperor vested in his subjects and riddled with a power so heavy, so cumbersome that it nearly bowed his spine with its weight. It was a burden he didn’t want...a curse that gave him this relentless, icy anger to drive him forward.

It made him care. It made him hurt. It made him want to be a great man so that he might be worthy of that terrible gift.

So he wasn’t one of them...instead, he was something more. He was the one that beat Ethan half out of his head...he, not Sawyer and his feral fury, or Sayid with his cold, calculating precision...not even John, with a hunter’s mind to guide him.

Jack told them what to do...just like they’d all wanted.

They were his people...and here under the open sky, he wasn’t telling them what to do. There was no due process, no court to hold as lord and master of this domain. There was only what he knew.

He was a leader...a great man.

And like any great leader, he gave no ground to his enemies. None.

Muse: Jack Shephard
Fandom: LOST
Words: 382


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Dr. Jack Sheppard

December 2007

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