Disclaimer: I don't own Krit or Syl or Dark Angel. Belongs to James Cameron and so on.
Spoilers: AJBAC
Setting: After AJBAC
Characters: Krit, Syl
Summary: Krit and Syl try to deal with losing Max and Zack.
Rating: PG-13
Author: Ty
Archive: Ask me first. E-mail get in the shower and turn the water on hot enough to scald me. I stand in the spray until I feel myself adjusting to the temperature. Then I turn the water on as cold as it will go. I hope the change will send me into shock. I've been in shock for the past week, but this morning I woke up and it hit me.
Zack and Max are gone.
Now I just want to go back into shock. I don't want to deal with it. I can't handle it.
When I woke up this morning, I screamed. Scared the hell out of Krit, I know. But I screamed because I was afraid and I was mad and I was miserable and I didn't know what else to do. I screamed and then I cried. I only remember crying once before, when I was very little, right after the escape. I cried because I was all alone and I was sure that I would die. I cried this morning because I wished that I had died.
Krit had run in and immediately wrapped his arms around me. But I could feel that he didn't want to. I could tell that I scared him.
I told him that I would be okay, that he could leave. But he said no. He knew that I wasn't okay, that I wouldn't be okay. He had stayed for me. He said that he needed me to be with him, for his sake. But I know the truth.
I'm not in shock. No such luck there. I could just go to bed and try to sleep. But if I go to sleep, I'll dream about Max and Zack and the attack on Manticore. So instead, I get dressed, grab my jacket and leave. I know that Krit will worry. He'll probably come looking for me. But that seems so insignificant to me, right now. I just can't seem to care. So I walk out the door without a word to Krit and go looking for the loudest, darkest, trashiest bar I can find. Maybe I'll get drunk. Maybe I'll pick a fight. Maybe I'll hook up with some guy and go home with him and pretend like I'm nothing but a regular girl. Pretend that I didn't just lose my brother and sister to the closest thing to hell on Earth I have ever come across. Pretend that I didn't leave Satan-incarnate with Max's lover to sort things out on their own. Pretend that it's not my fault that all that happened.
Maybe for one more night I can avoid thinking about it. Maybe I won't wake up tomorrow screaming. Maybe there won't be a tomorrow.

I sensed something wrong the minute I walked out of my room. The apartment was too still.
I checked the bathroom and Syl's room, she wasn't there. I looked for a note, but found none. I worried.
Syl likes to act like nothing gets to her. But I know things do. Little things like how short she is. I tried to tell her once that it was no big deal, it's just how she was made. She laughed it off and said she could kick my ass no matter what height she was.
Little cocky Syl. That's how I know her. I've always debated about what I should actually call her. I can't call her my little sister because she's older than me, but I don't feel right calling her my big sister when I'm so much taller than she is. So I just call her Syl. Little cocky Syl. My Syl.
But the person I've been sharing an apartment with this last week isn't my Syl. It's someone else that I don't know and that I'm a little afraid of. The person is cold and distant and hasn't said two words in the entire time we've been here. The person walks around like a mindless zombie, eating and drinking enough to stay alive, just going through the motions of being a human being. I don't like this person.
I hope that somewhere inside this new person is my Syl. That she's still in there and I can reach her somehow. But I'm afraid that I won't be able to. I'm afraid that losing Max and Zack has destroyed my Syl. I'm just afraid.
It's always seemed impossible to me. Inconceivable that we could lose Zack. Even when I was little, Zack was a constant presence. As constant as Lydecker. It never even occurred to me that one day he wouldn't be there. One day there would be no big brother to protect us, and watch out for us, and yell at us, and argue with us.
I think about what would have happened if I had gone back. If I had gone and tried to save him. But when Syl and I were running for the perimeter, I had been eight again. We were escaping from Manticore and the only thing I could do was run, run as fast as I could, stopping for nothing.
And then we had reached the van and Lydecker had said that Max was KIA. Then, I had been nineteen. And still I hadn't realized what it had meant. Max, KIA? Impossible. As impossible as losing Zack. But both had happened.
I think that it shouldn't have happened. Max and Zack were the best of all of us, the top of our group. If anyone should have gotten caught, it should have been me and Syl. I think sometimes it should have happened that way. Then, I could have taken the blows and provided Syl with an opportunity to escape. Then, it would just be me they had lost. They would be sad and then they would move on. They would still have big brother to help them. And Max would still be there to just be Max. Our Maxie. The one that we all held dear just because she was who she was. Syl might cry, but she would live. She would be herself. She wouldn't be the shell that she is now.
Syl thinks that it is her fault. That she should have done something. She doesn't blame me because I'm younger than she is; I'm her little brother Krit. But I'm the one who should have done something, not her, not Syl. It should have been me.
I haven't cried. I want to sometimes, but I remember Syl and I don't. I have to be strong for Syl; I have to take care of her. I think that might be the only thing that keeps me going now.
And now I'm worried. I don't know where she is or what she's going to do. The way Syl has been acting I'm afraid she might try to kill herself. And without Syl, I'm afraid I might do the same. I don't want to die. In truth, death scares me. We were trained not to fear it, but I do. Death, Manticore, and the person Syl has become. Those are the things that scare me.
I hurry out the door, hoping I can catch her. I don't think to grab a jacket until I'm already down the stairs. And by then, I don't care. I hurry outside and think I see her across the street in the middle of a cluster of people getting off a bus. I run across the street, nearly getting hit by a car, and discover that it's not her. That has never happened to me before. I have never mistaken someone else for Syl. It troubles me that I don't recognize her anymore.
I looked to the sides, down the streets. I don't see her. I'm starting to panic. I force myself to calm down and focus. If I concentrate hard enough I can track her by the smell of the soap she uses. She was going to take a shower the last time I saw her.
I close my eyes and concentrate. I can feel people staring at me, but I don't care. Finally, I discern the smell of Syl's soap from the million other smells. My head hurts from concentrating hard enough to find that small smell, but I ignore the pain. I follow the smell down the street, but lose it halfway. I look around and find that I am in a very bad area of town. I wonder why Syl came here and what she has in mind. If she's even thinking.
There are clubs here and I decide that if Syl came this way, she will be in one of them. So I walk into the closest one and look for her.
The smell of beer, sweat, urine, vomit, and drugs are mixed thickly in the air and I gag. I hope that Syl's not here. I ask the bartender if he's seen someone with Syl's description. He shakes his head and tells me not many girls come in here. It's not that kind of place. I realize what he means and suddenly notice the looks I am getting from some of the men. I hurry out the door, not wanting to be in that kind of situation. I could take care of anyone in that bar, but that would take time and Syl could get farther and farther away in that time.
I go across the street into another club. It's dark in this one and music blares so loud I think my head will explode. I try not to look at what the people are doing in the not-so-discreet corners of the place. Instead I concentrate on the middle of the room and I see her sitting at the bar. She looks out of place, I think. She shouldn't be in a place like this.
I wonder if she's seen me yet. I wonder if she even cares anymore. I go over to her and gently tap her shoulder. Normally, she would jerk around, ready to punch me in the face. Now she just looks up at me with eyes that hold enough hurt and pain that I really do want to cry. I wish I could make the pain go away for her. I wish that I could bring Zack and Max back. But hoping and wishing is stupid and it's just something people do when they can't face cold, hard reality. I know that. But I can't stop wishing and hoping anyway.
I pay for her drink and lead her out of the club. She doesn't protest or fight me. I sort of wish she did. That would be more like my Syl.
I ask her if she is alright and she just stares at me. My Syl would tell me that was a stupid question. This Syl doesn't say a word. I beg her to say something, to talk to me. She opens her mouth and when words finally come out, her voice sounds weird. She asks me to take her home. I know by home, she doesn't mean the apartment. I know she doesn't even mean the place we were staying before Zack called us. We have no home, but the one we find in each other. Max was home for Zack even if she didn't know it. Jondy was home for Max before they were forced apart during the escape. Syl is home for me. I don't think I love her. I don't even know if any of us is really capable of that. Besides Max, of course. Max is capable of all the things the rest of us are not.
I know that Syl means me when she says home. So I take her back to the apartment and I put her in her bed. I kiss her cheek and tell her to sleep. I don't mention how she scared me. I don't ask her not to do it again. I just tell her to sleep and that's what she does.
I think that maybe the others shouldn't know what happened to Max and Zack. I think that they might end up like this. Max and Zack are what held us together since we were children. But then I think they deserve to know and I think it is my job to tell them. I dread that. So I decide that I will wait, wait until Syl is better. She'll help me through it and it will all be okay once Syl gets better.
It will all be okay.