Torn stood on the roof of the tallest building at the Port, watching the sun set. It was a year after Jak had saved the world again. Torn sighed and sat down, allowing his legs to dangle over the sides. He sat back on his palms, ignoring the heat from the metallic roof. He couldn't seem to keep his thoughts off Jak lately; he guessed it was guilt but he couldn't be sure.
He knew he had some sort of feelings for Jak, which only magnified the guilt he felt. Contrary to popular belief, Torn wasn't heartless. He had a heart, he just chose to ignore it. Over the past year, Torn had started paying attention to his heart for the first time in what felt like forever. It told him he loved Jak, but Torn ignored it for as long as he could- to be frank, Torn was afraid of what love could do to him. With love came ultimate trust, and Torn just wasn't ready for that.
The thing that worried Torn the most were the rumours; rumours that Jak had feelings for Torn in return. If Jak admitted to having feeling for Torn, he didn't know what he would do. Only once before had someone admitted feelings for him, but those were different circumstances.
Torn looked down and saw Jak's green-blonde head in a small crowd of people going home. Jak was headed for the Naughty Ottsel; the place that Torn was commonly found. Torn frowned and watched Jak enter the bar. He stood and looked down on the city once more before turning and walking back down to the street.
When Torn entered the bar, he saw Jak sitting on a stool talking to Daxter who was mixing a drink. The bar had closed early that night and the place was empty save for the three. Daxter looked over Jak's shoulder and nodded to the Commander. "Speak of the devil." He said, smirking. Jak turned around and looked slightly shocked at the sight of the disheveled elf in front of him.
Torn smirked and sat next to Jak. "Looking for someone?" Torn snickered. Jak rolled his eyes, a similar smirk claiming his lips. Daxter looked back and forth between the two and chuckled. "I'll leave you two alone. Jak- you know where I'll be if you need me." Daxter said, tossing Jak the keys and padding to the door. "Lock up when you two are done!" He yelled over his shoulder and exited.
The two faced each other, but didn't speak for a long time. Torn's heart pounded and his palms began to sweat; now was his chance to find out of the rumours were true. "People are talking, Jak." He said nonchalantly. Jak was taken aback; he hadn't been expecting that. "T-talking? About what?" Jak asked, unable to look Torn in the face. He knew exactly was Torn was talking about.
"Do you love anyone, Jak?" Torn asked, studying the younger elf's face. The look of guilt that Jak wore on his face expressed the guilt Torn felt. Jak couldn't lie to Torn, but he turned his face away. "Yes." Jak sighed, giving in to the temptation of revealing one of his deepest secrets; one he had held for at least a year. He wasn't sure when he had acquired feelings for Torn, but he'd tried to suppress them because Torn would never return them.
Now, he wasn't so sure of that.
"Mind if I ask who?" Torn asked, breaking the silence again and sitting to his right side was facing Jak. Jak opened his mouth to speak, then shut it abruptly. He tried to search for a decent way to tell Torn, but he couldn't get it out.
"It's me, isn't it?" Torn snarled. Jak nearly jumped at the anger in Torn's voice. Jak gulped and focused on something else, hoping Torn would forget the conversation. Unfortunately, Torn had a good memory. "Isn't it?" Torn whispered. "Yea, Torn. It's you." Jak breathed.
Torn sighed and looked up at the ceiling, studying non-existent patterns with his eyes. "You seem pissed." Jak sneered, angry with himself for spilling his secret. Torn sighed. "The only reason I've been able to keep my own secrets silent is because I didn't know you had feelings for me. That changes things. I've never been able to deny those I care about and it'll be the death of me one day." Torn said, standing.
Jak looked at Torn with an odd look on his face. Torn was being pensive and that was new to Jak. He was too busy focusing on Torn pensiveness to realize what Torn had just said until a few minutes after he said it. When it dawned on Jak that Torn had admitted feeling… something for him, he jumped up as well.
"Wait, are you saying you feel the same?" Jak asked. Torn chuckled. "Took you that long to realize it, huh?" He mused, turning around. "You were being all… pensive and it was different." Jak shrugged. "But does it matter? Look, things are different now; you're not forced to be in a shit hole 24/7 and I'm not running around saving the people who betrayed me. We can both have what we want, right?" He asked. He wasn't used to beating around the bush. It seemed to him they were both going through different things.
Torn knew what Jak was saying. But as much as he wanted it, he pushed passed Jak and went back to the counter and rested his arms on it. "I have too many secrets." He said, simply. Jak rolled his eyes. "So tell me, I'm not the child you treat me like." Torn shook his head.
"These are different. They're not what you would expect." Torn murmured. Jak leaned on the counter next to him. "Well, if I expected it, it wouldn't be much of a secret." He smiled. Torn gave him a sidelong glance. Without warning, he reached over and pressed his lips lightly to Jak's, his hands clasped around Jak's forearms. Neither of them made a move to lessen the chasteness of their kiss until Torn pulled away. "What was that for?" Jak asked, a stunned smile on his face.
"Look, Jak, I can't be with you because of the secrets, and if I tell you you'll hate me. That was a once-only deal." Torn said, his back now to the counter. Jak's face darkened. "Stop toying with my emotions, dammit. You can tell me, I won't hate you!" Jak insisted. It was Torn's turn to be angry. "How do you know you won't hate me! You have no idea what the nature of the secrets are!" He yelled.
Jak took a deep breath. He didn't like yelling, especially at Torn. "Look, just tell me, alright? I promise I'll at least try and see it from your point of view and not get too mad, whatever it is." Jak said. Torn sighed. He could never deny those he loves.
And so, the battle between love and justice begins.
"I suppose I should start from the beginning, then?" Torn said, looking at Jak who grinned. "Please." Jak said, sitting on a stool and pulling Torn onto the stool opposite him. Torn sat down and took a deep breath. "You're not going to like this. I suppose Veger told you a part of it; how he took you from your father when you were a child, then killed him before he knew you were his son." Torn said, frowning at the look on Jak's face.
"I know who you are, Jak. I've known it for a long time." Torn said, looking at his hands. Jak's eyes grew large. "You knew and you didn't tell me!" Jak demanded. Torn looked up, smirking rather sadly. "See? I told you you wouldn't like it." He said. Jak shook his head in frustration and sat down. "Go on." He said. Torn nodded.
"Veger wasn't telling you the whole truth. The thing that made me quit the Guard was what Praxis and Veger wanted to do to a child, no older then 2. They told me to bring them the child, but they were vague on the details. I had the child and was on my way back, and I overheard their plans. I left, then and there, taking the boy with me. I can only guess that boy was you."
Jak nodded. "But you saved me back then, Torn. Why would I hate you for that?" He asked. Torn shook his head. "I had every opportunity to take you back to Damas, but I didn't. I wouldn't leave that damn shit hole to take you back from the person I took you from. I've known Damas since I was a teenager, but I still took his only son away." Torn was becoming frustrated with each word, so he took a deep breath.
Jak cocked his head to one side. "You knew Damas when you were a teenager?" He asked. Torn looked up and nodded. "Before I was the Commander under Praxis, I worked for him. He was the father I never had." Torn said, his eyes narrowing. "You never had a father?" Jak asked, interested in the past he had never heard before.
"Not one I ever acknowledged. I suppose that bastard is still alive. He was an alcoholic and blamed me for my mother leaving him when she was a prostitute to begin with." Torn snarled. Jak's eyes widened, but he remained silent. Torn was breathing heavily from anger and he said nothing more.
"Was that your only secret, Torn?" Jak asked after minutes of silence. Torn's eyes met Jak's; he wasn't sure what to say. He had a myriad of secrets, but this would push Jak away from him forever, he knew. But he also knew Jak's hatred would be justice after what he did. Slowly, Torn shook his head. "No."
Torn sighed and looked at the ceiling again. "Veger found me again, after all those years of hiding. He talked a lot about you, and I guess he saw in my eyes how I felt about you. I felt it long before I acknowledged it. He knew I had been keeping in contact with Damas as well. He told me you would be dead before sundown if I didn't tell him where Damas was. Damas told me he was going after you, so I knew where he would be. At first, I scoffed at what he said, but as time went on I couldn't. He was threatening you with death and I guess it was then that I acknowledged the feelings I had covered up for so long. I couldn't let Veger kill you if there was something I could do to stop it. So I… I sold him out. I told Veger where Damas was when he had been trying to keep his location secret for years. I gave away Damas' one secret; I told Veger the one thing Damas made me swear to never tell. It's entirely my fault you never knew you father. I killed Damas."
Torn clenched his fists in pain and Jak's jaw dropped. "You sold him out to VEGER! How could you!" Jak asked, his own pain and anger building. Torn shook his head. "I told you- Veger threatened to kill you." Jak snorted. "I can handle myself, Torn." He said, his words becoming cold. "I know that, Jak! Don't you think I know that? It's just that I realized at that moment I cared about you, and I couldn't think straight. I kicked myself when I realized Veger's threats were hollow."
Jak frowned. "So it's your fault I never knew my father? Your fault he's dead?" Jak asked, trying to verify Torn's story, as if it couldn't be true. "Yes." Torn said, defeat in his voice. "Trust me, Jak, it's better that you didn't know him." Torn said, shaking his head.
"Better that I didn't know him! How? How is it better!" Jak exploded. Torn expected the reaction, so he didn't say anything. "Because you're not close to him; you feel the pain of losing him because you'll never get to know him. It's better that way- he was like a father to me and it hurts more." Torn explained.
"How! How can it hurt you more then it hurts me? He was MY father, not yours!" Jak yelled. "How can you miss someone you never knew!" Torn yelled back, raising his voice for the first time. "Look Jak, I know you'll never forgive me. Just say so and leave; I'll lock up." Torn said, turning back to the bar.
"Why are you acting like this, Torn?" Jak asked. Torn sighed. "Because the sooner I acknowledge you will never love me after what I did, the sooner I can move on." He said, sipping the drink Daxter had left out for him; he hadn't noticed it before.
"So was I right, Jak?" Torn asked. It was more of an after-thought then anything. He was referring to Jak not being able to forgive him; that Jak would hate him after he told him his secret. A very small part of him held on to the hope that Jak would forgive him; Torn had betrayed Damas for him, after all. But the better part of him already expected Jak's answer.
"Yeah." Jak nearly whispered. He dropped the keys on the table next to Torn and walked out. Torn smiled at himself; his idiocy to ever believe love would prevail over justice. He had gotten what he deserved; he betrayed the only father he ever knew, and lost the only real love he ever had. He downed the glass and set it down, laughing bitterly now. He never had Jak to begin with.
The battle between love and justice.
Em: Well… I really REALLY like this story. I like the idea behind it and how it's original. (Or at least I haven't seen anything like it Oo) It'll have a sequel called Forget-Me-Nots so if you liked this, keep an eye out for that. 3 Ta darlings! (I STILL can't get over that, Kim XD)