Author: GRINtelligencer PM
It was the fight that should have happened. It was the inevitable ending of a friendship. And it was the only move Break could have made. Liam, Break, and a whole lot of AU. Post Retrace 30's visit to Duke Barma.Rated: Fiction T - English - Horror/Angst - Reim L. & Xerxes B. - Words: 1,985 - Reviews: 4 - Favs: 14 - Follows: 1 - Published: 01-19-11 - Status: Complete - id: 6667960
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Summery: It was the fight that should have happened. It was the inevitable ending of a friendship. And it was the only move Break could have made. Liam, Break, and a whole lot of AU. Post Retrace 30's visit to Duke Barma.
Characters: Liam, Break, Barma in passing.
Comments: This is an old and slightly melodramatic fic that I've given a little of final edit and made presentable. It was generated from reading way to many friendship Liam and Break fics and the want make Break well and truly scary and Liam really honestly afraid of him. That turned out to fit nicely into the frame of a more extreme version of a of the 'returning of the coat' talk. Scary!Break or debatably Break/Kevin turned out to be… really creepy. Please review and tell me what you think.
Spoilers: Up to Retrace 30.
In a way, Break had been waiting for the knock on his door all evening. He'd known this was coming, ever since he had entered his rooms he'd been keeping one ear cocked for the sound.
The waiting had nearly driven him, Xerxes Break, master of the waiting game, mad. Or, madder than he already was. He knew what he had to do; it had been clear from the moment that a metal fan had impacted with the side of Liam's head. He had gotten Liam into this far too deep and it was time to fix that before… well, before.
But it wasn't until he had kindled a fire, changed out of his bloody and torn clothes, carefully hung up the coat that was most definitely not his but was treasured all the same on the open wardrobe door, done some uncharacteristic cleaning of his room, thrown the subsequent mound of candy wrappers into a corner to be just as quickly forgotten, and, with a rather guilty look at the coat, done a bit of the towering pile of paperwork that the knock came.
Break put down the papers and went over to open the door.
Liam stood just outside.
Break made a welcoming gesture.
Liam walked in.
Break closed the door.
Liam turned to face him.
Break gave him a grin, his usual kind, all sweetness and faked cheer.
And Liam punched him.
Overall, it wasn't a very good punch, but what it lacked in form it made up for in emphasis. Break caught himself on the side if his desk and kept his smile firmly in place. "Now, whatever could that have been for?"
It was a fact of life that Liam was loud when he was angry. He was loud and spluttering and usually rather incoherent. And there could be no doubt he was angry right now, his hands were clenched at his sides, his shoulders were set, his hair almost frazzling with the force of his anger; but when Liam spoke his tone had been quiet and deadly, each word as cold as a ice chip. "Xerxes Break." he said, and the smile wilted from Break's face.
He had never heard that tone in Liam's voice, never seen that expression on his face. He winced and gingerly touched his cheek, he'd have a spectacular bruise by morning, he knew. "Whatever could that have been for?" he asked again, carefully.
For a moment Liam seemed like he was going to hit him again, but he restrained himself and instead said, "You never told me."
The immediate answer, "Never told you what?" readied itself to be said, but Liam had already punched him once, Break had no desire for a repeat of the experience.
"We've known each other for more than ten years and you never even mentioned, never even hinted that you were once…" Liam grimaced and didn't finish the sentence.
Break sighed. "Are the words so repulsive you can't say them? Surely Pandora work requires frequent use of the phrase."
"Well, when they come conjuncted with you I find the thought much less appealing. But that isn't why I'm angry. I'm angry because -because, you didn't even trust me enough to tell me about you! We've worked together for years, you called me your friend, I suppose that doesn't mean anything to you, does it?"
"Had you known what I was, known the crimes I have committed, would you have called me friend?"
"I trusted you." Liam snapped.
Break rocked back on his heels as if he had smacked him across the face. Again. Then he drew himself up and raised his eyebrows. "Trusted me? Well, that was certainly a stupid thing to do."
As could have been expected Liam went to hit him again but Break stepped to the side and let the punch slide by. He caught the other man by the shoulders and pinned him to the wall easily, even with his weakened body Break was a fighter. Liam was not, which was why Liam had a livid red wound on his temple from a metal fan.
Break took his hand from Liam's shoulder to touch angry red skin by the wound. "Now that looks like it hurts."
Flinching away from the touch Liam turned his head to the side. "Let me go, Break."
"No." the word was said over a smile, but there was something about it that made Liam shrink further back against the wall. For a man who was supposed to be in bad health, Break's grip was surprisingly strong, it was starting to make his shoulder ache. "You trusted me, eh? Trusted me?" a squeeze made his shoulder creak, "Liam, sometimes your infinite stupidity just amazes me. Of all the people you know, I am the one you should trust the least."
Liam tried to shift to the right, away from the hand on his shoulder but Break's free hand slapped down on the wall to pin him in. He had no idea how Break managed to loom over him when he was several inches taller but Break managed it. There was a glint in Break's eye that he didn't like, something dark and threatening that he had never seen before was surfacing in the other man.
"Break, let me go." Liam demanded, his voice verging on something like panic. There was something he wasn't sure he liked about the look on Break's face.
"No." said Break flatly. "And you can't break loose, can you?"
Trying to quickly duck under Break's right arm Liam was yanked back by his left with more strength than a man not long from his grave should have.
"Break," Liam tried to keep his voice even but they both heard the fear making it shake, "l-let me go. You're being…"
"Being what?" Break asked with a sweetness that belayed the dark look on his face. "This is who I am. After all-" The hands fastened around his throat so fast Liam probably didn't see them move and tightened quickly. "I'm the Mad Hatter," Break hissed. "I'm hardly trustworthy, I'm more likely to stab you in the back for my own purposes than help you."
"…Break…" Liam choked. "What are… you…"
"Doing?" there was a smile on Break's face, perversely wide and cheerful. "I'm proving that I am an unwise person to count as a friend. In fact, I care about nothing but my goal and the achievement of that truth. And everything else," he brought his face close to Liam's, the smile spreading. "Everyone else, is disposable. Especially if they get in my way."
"And… Lady… Sharon?"
Break chuckled, a dark little noise that appeared to come from the back of his throat. "My ward, I protect her because it benefits me to do so and because her mother would kill me should anything happen to her dear daughter. But you, Liam," he shook his head, "You're really only minimally useful." Liam saw Break's eye flick up to the wound on his temple and down again. "In in fight you're a momentary distraction at best. And at worst," Break met his eyes, "Utterly useless."
That had been the exact word that Barma had used and Liam involuntarily flinched so hard he almost broke free Break's grip. But Break just tightened his hands so much that Liam scrabbled, panicked, at his hands, trying to get them loose. He was starting to see little specks of light now that he couldn't breathe in earnest.
That made the smile grow teeth and Break leaned in to whisper, voice low and threatening, "My name used to be Kevin Regnard a long time ago. I killed a lot of people. One more wouldn't be all that difficult."
He could protest, he didn't have the air, and besides, there were too many little lights going off in his head for him to have formed a coherent sentence. He did, however, manage a strangled gurgle, as his hand went out, trying to push Break away, uselessly striking at him with blows far too light to do anything. But they were all he could muster, his strength had fled him.
And so was his sight, it was as he was looking up at Break room a very long distance, almost obscured by the sparkling, flashing lights.
There was a flash of something in Break's eyes, but he could barely see, never mind identify it.
"You're dead, Liam."
Liam grappled with the hands around his throat one last, desperate time before the world went completely dark.
Break watched the light fade from Liam's eyes with more care than one would expect from a self-professed madman. At sometime he judged to be the right one he loosed his hands from Liam's neck, grabbing him by the front of his uniform and pulling him to the door, snagging the errant coat from the wardrobe door as they passed it.
Opening it Break dumped the body out into the hall and regarded it carefully, a slight frown creasing his forehead. It did not move from where it had been dropped. The frown deepened and Break knelt to put his ear to the body's chest.
At the reassuring thud of a heartbeat Break sighed his relief -he had not wished to actually kill Liam with this little stunt- and threw the coat over him. He waited; watching until Liam coughed, gasped, and breathed again before he returned to his rooms.
Resolutely Xerxes Break closed the door on the gasping man, leaning back against it and wincing as he listened to the coughing. That had been a little farther than he had planned to go.
After a few minutes the coughing faded and there were the rustles and scrapes of someone getting to shakily to their feet. When the uneven footsteps finally faded away Break let go of the facade he had been holding.
His face slid from an utterly impassive mask to the lined and pale face of a man deeply pained. He sighed a long, tired sigh, sliding down to sit on the floor. Resting his forehead against the heels of his hands he murmured, "I only have one true friend in this mess. I will not have him be killed trying to help me."
Did I have to go this far? he wondered briefly. I almost killed him. He will never forgive me.
No. That was the whole idea. Liam is far too loyal in his friendship to be pulled any deeper into his plot. He already almost got killed for you once, remember?
"Even if I have to go this far," Break said to himself, "I will protect you, stupid loyal fool that you are."