Characters: Max, Ames White
Timeline: Set two years after Freak Nation. The war has just ended and the transgenics / transhumans won their freedom.
Summary: Everyone has a last request. Even Ames White. She just never thought she'd be the one to hear it.
Disclaimer: I own nothing. Nada. Zip. Zilch.
Author's Note: This is the first fic I've written in a long time. Writer's block. It's also my first attempt at Dark Angel. Feeback is always appreciated.
The first thing she noticed was how pale he seemed. Not that he was usually tan, but there was a gray pallor tinting his skin that was never there before. All around her people were rising, helping the wounded, and trying to clean up the mess that their war had made. But all she could see was him. His normally whiter than white shirt was stained red with his blood. It was on his hands as he pulled them away from the bullet wounds that dotted his chest. She could hear him laugh, hysterical, bitter laughter, as if he just realized that he was hurt, dying. She was tempted to walk away but part of her just couldn't imagine telling little Ray that she just walked away from his dad when he needed someone, anyone, to help him.
She nodded briefly to Alec who was watching her approach White. She shook her head and nodded toward the injured, not even having to tell him that she needed him to help the others. And when she was sure that he wasn't paying attention to her anymore, she went to White and knelt beside him. He gave a bitter laugh.
"452. What…a…surprise. Come to…finish me off?"
"No. I came to see if you needed help."
"A little…too late. Dying here." His breath was labored and she could see some blood beginning to seep from the corner of his mouth. His lungs must have been damaged. There was no point in arguing with him. Five bullet wounds were leaking blood all over his chest. She knew that no doctor could save him now. So she sat there quietly by him, waiting, unsure of what to say. Suddenly he speaks again. "Promise me, 452…Max."
There was nothing but silence and she couldn't move a muscle. The world outside disappeared and it was just the two of them in a bubble. She was stunned that he used her name. Stunned and confused. "Promise you what?"
"That you'll…take care of Ray. That you'll be…the one to…raise him."
Of course she'd do it. She loved Ray. But she wasn't sure why Ames White, her enemy, was asking this of her. "Why?"
And that was what it boiled down to. Because despite the fact that they hated each other, tried to kill each other repeatedly, they knew that when it came to Ray they both wanted the same thing. For him to be safe and happy. She can see more blood come out of his mouth, making it hard for him to breathe. He began to gasp for air and she knew it wouldn't be much longer. So she leaned over, her face close to his, and told him what she knew he wanted all along.
"I want you to know, I kept him safe. He's happy, but he misses you. He's in Toronto, with Lydecker. He loves school and math is his favorite subject." She saw the light in his eyes as she told him about that his son missed him. And she felt guilty. All he ever wanted was his son. And now the chance to see him again was gone. This was her fault. So the least she could do for him was to tell him what she knew. "He's got a crush on a girl in his class named Kelsey. She's supposed to be very pretty. Dark hair and dark eyes. Lydecker says she looks like me, that he's projecting…whatever that means…." She kept talking until she saw his eyes slide shut. His hand fell slack in her grip and she looked down at it curiously, not sure when she grabbed it in hers in the first place. And then he was gone. Slipped away silently, not at all how she ever pictured him dying.
Suddenly she couldn't stop the tears. Tears for the man who lost everything and was just trying to get it back. Tears for the boy who's father just died and he didn't even know it. Tears for everyone lying dead and dying on the ground from their stupid war. This was where hatred got them. Looking down at Ames White she knew that she had to try and change things. He gave her his son to care for and raise. The least she could do was give Ray a safe world to grow up in.