Title: Sticks and Stones

Author: Alyson (alysfaire@aol.com)

Disclaimer: I don't own Alias or Sark and am simply borrowing him for a quick spin. He'll be returned unharmed, much to my dismay.

Rated: G

Spoilers: None

Distribution: Just ask, I'm sure I'll say yes.

Feedback: Much appreciated.

***

I am Sark.

Murderer. Psychopath. Terrorist. Traitor.

That last one is always the most puzzling to me. I've never been a traitor. I am loyal to myself, first and always. I'm loyal to whoever signs my check at the end of any given day, second. That has never wavered. Certainly, I may work both sides of a situation. But never at the same time. I'm no traitor. As for the rest? Labels of little consequence. People will call me what they may.

I answer only to Sark.

Sometimes, in the very darkest part of night, I wonder what my mother called me. If she called me anything at all. Did she hold me to her breast and whisper my name lovingly? Did she turn away after I was born, wanting no part of me?

When I was eight years old, I broke in to the records room at the orphanage. I was to be transferred the next day and knew it would be my last chance to see my record. To get any clue as to where I came from. There was a fat file labeled with the name I'd been given by the nuns, James Thomas Watson, and it contained nothing more than the date I was found and a list of the transgressions I'd accomplished during my stay. No tear-stained note from a desperate mother. No locket or ribbon. No name.

When I took my freedom at age sixteen, I became Sark. Mr. Sark, formally. A name I chose, a name I embraced. Simple. Straightforward. Mine.

I am often called by other names, depending on the job.

I've been Edgar, Francois, Peter and Piotr. Gerard, Patrick, Ian and Johan. And more than a few variations on James. Always back to that one. There was even one particular occasion, early in my association with Irina, where I'd pushed her too far and had to answer to Humphrey. It didn't bother me like Irina thought it would. One of our first mutual lessons. I was not bothered by such things as what I was called. What people thought of me. It was good for both of us to realize that.

Call me what you like.

I am Sark.