Hi...here is the first of my alernate endings. It is a tragic NatKitty ending...please review!

Disclaimer: I don't own the Bartimaeus trilogy, only these alternate ways of ending it. Oh, Mr. Stroud, why couldn't you have shown some compassion!

As he completed the Words of Dismissal, Nathaniel could feel the pain even more than before. Then Bartimaeus vanished; he was glad he had done something good, at least, before he died. They understood each other completely in that last moment.

The Staff broke upon his knee as Nouda bore down upon him in rage; he was surprised at how easily it broke, as the imprisoned entities escaped into the world for the first time in a hundred years. How easily everything is broken, he thought to himself.

As they had predicted, the explosion blew the roof apart, and glass and iron rained down on them all. To his great surprise, however, he was not crushed by the debris; instead, the force of the powerful explosion that was destroying Nouda at last catapulted him into the air, far from the Glass Palace.

He landed on the street outside, knowing then that he had broken every bone in his body. Without Bartimaeus' support, he found himself slipping into unconsciousness.

After leaving the two of them with Nouda, Kitty was troubled. Nathaniel could not survive long wounded, even with Bartimaeus backing him up. She fingered the Amulet of Samarkand around her neck, suddenly realizing something. She more than cared about him getting back safely.

She turned around and ran as fast as she was able back to the palace just as the roof imploded and glass and iron rained down upon where she knew the end was. Tears glistened in her eyes, but she kept on running. She had to know…

Something caught her eye…a dark figure flew though the air to land several feet away from her.

Kitty let out a cry: it was Nathaniel.

Someone was gently patting his face…gasping, Nathaniel came round. He was alive. Why was he still alive? He could barely see or feel anything…

Kitty's face slowly swam in front of his eyes; she was alive too, and the relief was almost painful. Then he saw that she was crying.

"No," he said faintly, wondering if she could even hear him. After his last defiance of Nouda and the dismissal of Bartimaeus, he felt weaker than ever, but he didn't want her to cry for him.

Kitty saw his eyes open, clouded with pain and death. And she cried because she knew right then that she loved him, and she didn't want it to happen. Not after all they had been through…to end it here…

She cradled his head on her lap, tears streaming freely down her face to add more lines to those that had appeared on her face after her journey to the Other Place. Kitty was only dimly aware of the people surrounding the two of them, of Piper kneeling beside her, looking stricken.

"Kitty," she said falteringly.

"We need to get him to a hospital," Kitty said quickly. "Hurry! Can't you see what's happening?"

She loved him too much to lose him, now…

"Oh, Kitty."

Piper pointed west, and Kitty saw the burning ruins of a hospital. But it didn't matter, there were others…they just needed more time!

Nathaniel's face was whiter than parchment, and she knew it would be too late. She could not ease his pain or his passing; she could only hold him until the last…

He whispered her name.

"Hello, Kitty," he said.

Nathaniel had told the djinni to say it, not believing he would ever see her again…because he had known, when he left her to confront Nouda, that he loved her with all of his heart. She had made him strong, and brave, and many other things besides.

But Nathaniel knew he was dying; he had expected it, in the Glass Palace, which is why he had dismissed Bartimaeus, but the fact that he had been given a few more minutes to live made it all a lot harder to let go of.

He gently moved his hand to grasp hers, tears starting from his own eyes.

Nathaniel's grip on her hand was weak, almost invisible, but Kitty knew it was there. That was all that mattered.

Like many commoners with little to do in their childhood, she had read books where people died in others' arms. Was this what he wanted?

His grip was loosening, but she held on grimly.

It was becoming harder to breathe, and his eyes could barely focus on her face now…but this was where he wanted it to end, in a place with warmth and love.

He was back in the park on a peaceful summer's day, with Ms. Lutyens sketching by his side, encouraging him…perhaps she would think better of him after this. He would never forget her cold contempt of him only a day or so ago…had his life changed so fast?

The dream changed. Now Kitty was there too, always there for him, even when things were ending…

Kitty could feel him slipping away from her now, and she bit her lip to stop herself from crying out. If this was what love really was, she didn't want any more of it!

His eyes were misted over, but he was smiling.

"If you must go," she whispered into his ear, "at least take a part of me with you."

Then she leant over him and kissed him gently as he gave his last breath; then Nathaniel died in the arms of someone who would always love him.

Okay, more endings coming soon. Hope you liked it, or that it made you cry but still feel satisfied!