Title: Damn Near Poetic
Rating: PG-13
Disclaimer: Don't own them; just borrowing.
Summary: She can smell it in this place, mingled with the sea air, the sand, the exotic danger of the jungle. She can smell it, the death and dying and pain, and her stomach rolls. She swallows and tries to remind herself: this is what she's always wanted. (Isn't it?)
Notes: Kate/Sawyer missing scene(s) from Tabula Rasa.


I sure wouldn't want to be the one with that gun right now. Because everyone sitting out there listening to that poor boy scream all night knows what's got to be done. Only one that can do it is the one with that gun. -Sawyer, Tabula Rasa


"Jack could do it."

"The hero?" A soft snort. It's not hard to hear the disdain, bordering on hatred. "Hell, sweetheart, you got the wrong Jack. He's the kind of doc who ain't never gonna go back on that Hippocratic Oath, consequences be damned. He don't know how." His face darkens; he looks directly at her now. "He ain't like us."

Kate stands up, arms folded across her chest as she looks down at him, face all shadows and light in the flickering glow of the fire. "You've just got everyone figured out, haven't you?"

"Just about." He gives her a grin then, dimpling, as if he expects to charm her into using the gun tucked in her back waistband.

"You don't know anything about me." She glares, face set, effectively fading his grin down to a faint hint of smirk. The groans of pain grow louder behind them and Kate turns around. Resolute.

"Seems to me..." She hears his voice following her across the beach but doesn't pause in her walk towards the infirmary tent. "...that you're the one wantin' him dead even more than the rest of us."

Now she does waver, stopping mid-stride, digging her toes against the soles of her boots. She closes her eyes, and Edward Mars is pointing his finger at her as she watches from the front seat of Ray Mullen's truck. Bang bang. She startles, jumping slightly, but opening her eyes, she continues on.


"So are you going to do it, or what?"

Kate looks down at him, his face contorted in pain, and she can smell it in this place, mingled with the sea air, the sand, the exotic danger of the jungle. She can smell it, the death and dying and pain, and her stomach rolls. She swallows and tries to remind herself: this is what she's always wanted. (Isn't it?) She clears her throat. "It'd be damn near poetic, don't you think?"

Mars laughs, a weak, choking sound, and he gasps for air afterwards. "Never figured you for the poetry type, Kate."

"I hate poetry." She reaches back, fingers the gun. It hadn't felt like this with Wayne. She hadn't hesitated, she hadn't trembled. She hadn't felt like vomiting. She removes the gun from her waistband, brings it forward, trains it on Mars.

"Freckles."

She feels his hand on her arm before she hears the murmured word; she hadn't even heard him come in the tent. She turns her head towards Sawyer, and in the darkness there's something she can't read in his eyes. She sees his head shake, though, and feels his fingers tighten around her forearm. "What are you --"

"C'mon." Only one word, and it's quiet, almost gentle, and she doesn't understand that. But he shakes his head again and she lets him extract the gun from her grasp. "Now go. Scram."

She drops her hand, arms limp at her side. Turning back towards Mars, she locks eyes with him. It only lasts a few seconds, though, before the man screws his eyes shut, moaning and writhing in pain. She glances at Sawyer again but his face is already in the shadows, hooded from her.

She turns and leaves the tent. Jack calls her name but she ignores his voice, walking steadily away. She breathes deeply but the smell lingers, the death and dying and pain, seared into her nostrils.

Bang. One shot.

She stops in her tracks, once. And she walks on.


She's sitting by the fire when she hears him approach, and she doesn't look up at him until he's seated beside her, elbows on his knees. She doesn't know how long they're silent, until he speaks, gruffly.

"There was only one bullet."

She thinks of how the groans had returned after the shot. Recalls watching Jack run towards the tent, and the silence that had followed. "I know."

He nods and shakes a cigarette from the pack in his hands. Curses angrily until the lighter ignites. She clears her throat and looks back over the ocean, still and glistening and almost peaceful in front of them. "Thank you."

His only answer is the glow of his cigarette.