Disclaimer: As usual, I own nothing.


Sayid had told Charlie that he had no regrets about beating the man who called himself Henry Gale. This, he had come to understand in the past few hours, was not exactly true. He wished he'd done more, caused more pain. He wished that he could have made if impossible for Henry Gale to straighten up and defiantly look them all in the eye. He wished, in fact, that Henry Gale were dead.

This was not something he would tell Jack. Nor John. Neither would understand. Neither saw what he did when he looked at those pale, flat eyes. They saw a liar, a man who would give them answers if only they could find the right way to extract them. Not his way, of course. Not yet. They would make a great show of humanity and decency. Even John, willing at first to concede that Sayid's methods had their place, had balked at allowing them again after seeing the damage he'd done. But he felt certain that after several more days, perhaps a week, of having one of them locked up in the hatch, their resolve to be decent and humane would weaken. They knew that in their world, there was no place for Sayid's methods. He, on the other hand, came from a world where decency and humanity barely existed. And they would allow him to do what had to be done, telling themselves all the while that at least they were spared some of the guilt by virtue of the blood not staining their hands.

"You look so thoughtful, Sayid. Contemplating new ways of pounding my face in?"

The voice cut through his thoughts as he was binding Henry Gale spread-eagle against the back wall of the armory. Coldly, he pulled the rope he was tying around the man's wrist far tighter than it needed to be. Henry's face twitched almost imperceptibly and Sayid said icily, "Shut up."

"Oh, so now you don't want me to talk. That's a change." All traces of the skulking, pathetic little nobody were gone. Henry Gale's demeanor was anything but defeated after having his lies exposed. No doubt he would return to it when it was expedient to do so. Further questioning would bring back the quivering wreck of a man that Henry had been. But for now he was brazen, uncaring that he had never been more vulnerable. It was infuriating.

Sayid looked at Henry's pale eyes and moved threateningly close. In a low, dangerous voice, he said, "You will be lucky if you leave this place alive. So I suggest that you stop talking."

Henry's eyes glinted with a hardness that Sayid had only glimpsed in split second flashes these past few days. Then, he had assumed he was seeing something that wasn't there. Now he knew this look to be the truth. This man lied with all his being, but the look of hardness on his face now was the first, and perhaps only, truth about himself that he had revealed. "Dead men don't need to worry about things like luck," Henry hissed. "And I know I'm dead."

For a second, Sayid considered hitting him to wipe the tiny, condescending smirk off his face. But Henry seemed to know what he was thinking and this, more than anything, was what made him back away. He was sure there would come a time when he'd have the opportunity. A time when Henry Gale wasn't daring him to do it.

"You about done in there, Sayid?" came Ana Lucia's voice from the doorway.

Glancing over his shoulder at her, he replied. "Yes. I am."

She narrowed her eyes at him, no doubt guessing some of the thoughts that were running through his mind right then. "Okay," she said, "let's lock him back up then."

Sayid gave one final tug to the ropes on Henry's wrists, hoping perversely for some expression of pain. He was disappointed. And as he closed the armory door and looked into Henry's eyes one more time, he was chilled by what he saw there.

No, the others wouldn't understand. They would not understand that Sayid looked into those eyes and saw only death.