Sailing Away

Lucas says farewell to Jonathan Brandis

Celeste (a.k.a. Nodi)

As I mentioned in Kiddo's review, the website:

is taking submissions from all over the SQ fandom as a tribute to Jon, and this will be my contribution. I think it would be nice if we could all contribute something (if you wanted to) even if it's just a favourite photo of him or a poem etc.

Not expecting reviews, but welcome if you do.

The young man shifted about and gazed over his shoulder, but the horizon remained empty. He sighed and lay down again, deciding that there was no point in being impatient.

He would come, he was certain.

The ocean had a soporific effect on him, and the warmth of the sun on his face carried him off into a gentle sleep.

Shortly his little boat was rocked by the contact of another vessel and Jonathan re-awoke with a start. Sitting up he looked around and laughed.

'You came all the way here in a rowing boat?!'

Lucas was indignant. 'Well the Stinger was in maintenance and it was very short notice'. Then the boy smiled. 'Besides I had some dolphin powered assistance'.

At this he waved his hand and Darwin nodded his head and squeaked.

Lucas returned his gaze to Jonathan. 'Why did you want to meet all the way out here anyway? And why so suddenly – couldn't you wait until next shore leave?'

Jonathan sighed and looked away.

'It's difficult to explain… I'm tired… So, so tired of everything. I don't think I have the strength to fight the fight anymore…' He paused and bit his lip before returning to look at Lucas.

'I doubt you can really understand.'

Lucas snorted. 'Are you kidding?' You know better than anyone the crap I've been through – parents who rejected me, a farther who sometimes hit me, I've been abducted, tortured and left for dead. Trust me, I know about pain. And I'm still here, I got up and started again because people have to, not just for themselves but also for all their friends and family who care. And you have lots of people who love you'.

Jonathan nodded slowly and a smiled formed on his mouth. 'In the 10 years we've known each other, I get the feeling they like you more'. He ran his fingers through his short brown hair and watched Darwin diving not far away. 'I guess it doesn't matter much now. I've decided, and I'm choosing to go.'

Lucas frowned. 'Go, what do you mean go? Go where?' His heart squeezed hard at the un-said implication.

'I'm sorry. I just don't want to be here anymore'. Jonathan was pained by the look of apprehension and bewilderment that danced on the boy's face. 'Don't be upset Lucas, I think it's better this way.'

Lucas clambered awkwardly into Jonathan's small dinghy and sat besides him.

'It's not better, no-one will think its better. It's really stupid actually. Think through what you're doing – all the people you'll leave behind who love you so much, don't you care?'

Lucas' voice cracked at the end, his blond hair blew into his face and hid the tears.

Jonathan sighed deeply.

'I have thought about them, but it's what I want. I'm sorry – really…'

Lucas scowled. 'You're a moron. It's going to hurt like crazy when you're gone… I need you, you're such a big part of my life, of me.' He pushed his fringe out of his face and reached out to his friend. 'You're really going to leave me? Leave us all?'

'Don't be sad little buddy. I don't want to leave you feeling bitter and hateful. Think of the good time, the laughs, and stupid stuff we did….'

Jonathan's voice wavered but his resolve did not.

Lucas nodded but hot tears poured from his blue eyes.

'This is horrible' he whispered. 'You're so young, with so much left to do.'

'No. Not in this lifetime. This is as far as it goes for me'. Jonathan struggled to look at his distraught friend. After a pause he joked

'Well I haven't got all day. Must dash old chap' in a hammy English accent.

Lucas giggled as he cried. He leant over and kissed Jonathan on the cheek and embraced him hard.

'I'm so sorry you're going, I'll miss you so much, we all will. But people will remember you always when they think of me. I swear, we won't forget you. Ever. You meant too much to us for too long'.

The remained with their arms wrapped tightly around each other for a long moment, but eventually they pulled apart for the very last time.

After a pause, Lucas shook his head and climbed back into his rowing boat.

'This sucks. Big time' he said when he sat down and looked over to his older friend.

'Take care – thanks for everything…' was all Jonathan could think to say.

'Oh wait – take this'. Lucas stood up and wobbled in the unsteady craft as he pulled off his Marlin shirt. 'It's all I've got to give you.'

Jonathan took it and pulled it on. 'Hmm it's a little tight, but thank you'.

He tried to smile, but the pain for both was as sharp as acid and their faces cracked, cheeks sparkling with teardrops.

Jonathan raised his sail; the white cloth exploded in the wind and took the tiller. 'Bye pal' he called as his boat started to chase the wind.

Lucas watched grief-stricken as his beloved friend faded between the crests of the waves, sailing away in his little boat and returned Jonathan's final wave goodbye.