Wow. This is it. 101 chapters. 6 years. What a run. Before this story ends, I want to thank all of you for following my story. I hope you'll keep following me on whatever story comes next, which I hope you all help me decide on as well. It's interesting that I end this story as I'm about to start a new chapter of my life in England- it may mean it will be a little while before I write again. Thank you for all of your support these past years. Alright, enough out of me- here you are. The End.

"Jacob told me that we have to go to the bamboo forest out past our old camp. Just past him, he said I'd find the place I'm supposed to protect," Jack explained to us. I stood between Hurley and Sawyer, my arms folded over my chest.

"This place," Kate said, sitting up, "What is it?"

"He called it 'the heart of the island,'" Jack answered. "All he said was that it's… it's a light."

"And that Locke-smoke-thing wants to put it out?" Hurley clarified.

"Something like that, yeah," Jack said, nodding.

"So what if he does?" Hurley asked. Jack shook his head.

"Then that's it for all of us," Jack replied.

"But… but if Locke wants to put it out, then why hasn't he?" Kate asked.

"'Cause he ain't got what he needs," Sawyer answered. "I'm guessin' that'd be Desmond. That's where we were headed before your inauguration. Sayid said Locke tossed him in a well."

"Jacob didn't say anything to me about Desmond," Jack said.

"Doesn't sound like he said anything about anything," Sawyer retorted.

"That's kinda true, dude, he's worse than Yoda," Hurley said. His answer got a little bit of a rise out of me, and I almost smiled.

"Well, if he needs Desmond, you probably do, too," I said, looking to Jack.

"Alright," Sawyer said, grabbing his pack, "Ya'll head to your 'heart of the island', and I'll go get that magic leprechaun out of the well."

"I'll come with," I nodded to Sawyer. He nodded back to me.

"If we leave a trail, can you catch up with us?" Jack asked.

"Hell yeah, I can," Sawyer answered.

"Then be safe," Jack said. Sawyer looked down at Kate as we started to pass her.

"I'd ask you along, but that'd take all the fun out of me telling you you can't come," He said.

"I guess I'll just have to resist the urge to follow you anyway," Kate said over her shoulder. With that, we hurried away towards the well Sayid spoke of.


When we finally got to the well, we stopped and looked ahead to see Locke there already, looking into the well. We snuck closer to get a good look at him. We ducked behind a bush.

"What's he doing?" I whispered quietly.

"I don't know," He answered me quietly. We peeked through the brush and watched, hoping something would happen. Locke began coiling some rope around his arm. A rifle cocked behind us and I turned quickly. Ben had us trapped there in the brush.

"As long as you're watching, why don't you join us?" Ben asked. Sawyer and I stood and marched towards Locke. I turned over my shoulder to see Ben pointing the gun at us.

"So what, you're Locke's lackey now?" I asked. He was silent. We marched forward quietly.

"What are you doing here, James? Carmen?" He asked, nodding politely. He looked almost amused to see us.

"Heard Desmond fell in a well," Sawyer answered. "So I came to help him get out." I hurried forward to the edge of the well and looked in. It was empty. "Looks like somebody beat us both to the punch. Oh well."

"Do you know why I'm here?" Locke asked Sawyer.

"I'm guessing you need Desmond to destroy the island," Sawyer said. Locke nodded.

"That's absolutely right," He replied.

"Then what, Smokey? You goin' down with the ship?" Sawyer asked. "Suicide doesn't seem like your style."

"I'm not going down with anything. But you," He said, looking between us, "and the rest of Jacob's little candidates absolutely are." Sawyer chuckled beside me.

"We're not candidates anymore," Sawyer shrugged. Sawyer elbowed Ben in the face quickly, who responded by dropping the rifle into Sawyer's hands. He pointed the rifle down at Ben and I pulled out my gun which was in the back of my jeans, deciding to point it also at Ben… bullets couldn't harm Locke. Sawyer backed away and picked up his pack. I followed slowly and kept my eyes on Ben and Locke. "I'll be seeing you," Sawyer said. With that we ran off into the jungle.

"What the hell was that?" I yelled at him as we ran through the jungle, hoping he wouldn't follow.

"Improvising! Hurry up, we gotta get back to Jack," He yelled. I shut up and ran.


I sat on the couch with Boone and leaned against him.

"How did it happen for you?" He asked me after a while. I leaned against his chest.

"Old age. I got pneumonia… couldn't quite fight it off," I said. I looked up at him and smiled. "I was ready." He rubbed my arm. A knock came at the door and the receptionist stepped in.

"I'm sorry, Mr. Carlyle? There's a man here to see you named Desmond Hume," She said, waiting for permission to let him in. I sat up and turned to Boone, nodding.

"Uh, let him in," He said. The woman left and Desmond came in. I stood up quickly and hurried over to him as he closed the door.

"Des," I said smiling. He smiled back down at me. I put my arms around him and hugged him.

"So… you know, then," He smiled down at me. I nodded and looked back at Boone.

"Yeah… yeah, we know," I said.

"Well… great. Hurley sent me… How'd you like to get your sister back?" He looked past me to Boone. He shrugged.

"Sure. I'm guessing it also involves Sayid?" He asked.

"And you getting her back from Sydney," Desmond said. "Get her here by tomorrow night." I nodded.

"We can do that," I said. Boone pulled the phone out of his pocket and began dialing.


We ran through the trees and eventually came into a clearing where Jack, Kate and Hurley were walking.

"Whoa!" Hurley yelled as we burst out of the foliage. Sawyer put up a calming hand.

"Easy, Big Foot, it's just me," Sawyer said. "We found Locke. Son of a Bitch said he's gonna destroy the island. You had it right, doc. Good news is Desmond got out of that well, so if we can find him before Smokey can…"

"Doesn't matter if we find Desmond or he does, James. We're all going to the same place, anyway," Jack said.

"We're just gonna let Locke find him?" I asked, worried for Desmond's safety. I knew he wouldn't hurt Desmond too much, but he had a wife now. He had to be kept safe. Jack answered my question with a glance. Yes, we were just going to let Locke find him.

"Then what?" Sawyer asked. I was still trying to catch my breath.

"Then it ends," Jack said. He continued forward. I started forward again, glad to be walking instead of running there.


As we started over a ridge, I found myself freezing in my footsteps. We were confronted by Locke, Ben… and Desmond.

"Well this is gonna be interesting," Locke started to say, but I heard Sawyer call out. Kate had taken his gun and aimed at Locke. Ben and Desmond dropped as she fired the rifle, but Locke didn't waver in his approach.

"Kate!" Sawyer called, trying to get her to stop.

"You killed them!" She screamed, moving down the ridge towards Locke. I moved forward to Sawyer as he tried to get the gun from her.

"Kate! That's it," Sawyer said, pulling the rifle out of her hands. Locke passed us all by.

"You might wanna save your bullets," Locke said to Kate patronizingly. He continued forward to Jack. I hurried down the hill to Desmond, who was standing again. He was using a walking stick and limping.

"Are you okay?" I asked him nervously. He smiled down at me.

"I'm fine," He answered. Hearing his voice again was weird… his thick accent rang in my ears. He looked down at me sweetly.

"What's wrong?" I asked him, looking him over and feeling his head for a lump. Maybe he had a concussion.

"Nothing. Nothing's wrong," He smiled. He put his hand to my chest and touched my necklace. "You still have it," He said quietly. I looked down at Boone's necklace and held it in my hand.

"Of course," I answered, wondering why he'd think I'd lose it.

"Alright then," Locke called out to us all, looking around at us. "Shall we?" He asked us, leading the way. I stayed close to Hurley and Desmond. I looked overhead to see rain clouds forming. We walked together a long way. I was quiet next to Desmond; it had been so long since I'd seen him that I didn't know what to say.

"Kate told me you're married to Penny," I said quietly.

"Yeah," He answered. "And we have a son," He said. I hesitated and looked up at him.

"Really?" I asked.

"Yeah… beautiful little boy. Named him Charlie," Desmond said. I stopped and felt tears coming to my eyes. "I'm sorry, I didn't mean to upset you…"

"No, no you didn't… upset me," I smiled, wiping my eyes. "That's great. Then… why are you here?" I asked.

"Widmore brought me," He answered. I nodded.

"Jack, Desmond," Locke called out, "It should just be the three of us from here on." Desmond began to move forward, but I placed my hand on his arm.

"You don't have to go," I coaxed him. "You have a family." He smiled.

"I do have to go," He answered. He pulled away from me and left with Jack and Locke. I stepped forward next to Hurley.

"Jack," Hurley said. Jack turned around. "I believe in you, dude."

"Be careful," I said to Jack. He nodded at us both and followed after Desmond and Locke.


The music in the biker bar was loud and obnoxious. Metal music that just sounded like noise pounded around us. I looked closely at Boone.

"You ready?" I asked him. He took another shot of whiskey, then nodded to me.

"Yeah… ready as I'm gonna be," He said. I grabbed his shoulder and squeezed, trying to show my support. He got up and walked over to a burly man by a pool table. I couldn't hear what he said, but the man did not seem happy. He pushed Boone, and grabbed him by the collar, dragging him out the front door.

"That's my cue," I said, finishing my cocktail. I hurried over to Shannon, who was chatting up a frat boy. "Shannon, help! Your brother just pissed off some biker, he's out in the alley!" She hurried out with me and I stood back as she ran forward to the man.

"Hey! Leave my brother alone!" Shannon yelled. The man threw her into the wall and she landed in a bunch of trash bags. I was about to go forward and help when I heard a car door slam, and Sayid was hurrying towards us. He incapacitated the man, and then knelt to help Shannon. I hurried over to Boone. He was alright, though a little roughed up. I looked over at Shannon and Sayid, who had the same looks of confusion and wonder as I did with Boone. I stood and helped Boone stand. I looked to the car Sayid had come from to see Hurley give a little wave. I hurried with Boone to the car door and leaned against the open window.

"Hurley," I smiled. He smiled back down at me.

"Hey, Carmen," He replied.

"I just got pounded, man," Boone complained through the passenger window. "Thanks for taking your sweet time." Hurley shrugged.

"Takes as long as it takes," He said, trying to stifle a laugh.

"It was a pain in the ass getting her here from Australia," He said.

"Yeah, but dude? It was worth it," Hurley said. I smiled across the car at him, and he returned the favor.

"Should I go get them?" He asked Hurley after a second. I turned to see Sayid and Shannon making out. I smiled and laughed a little.

"Nah, let's give them a minute," He said. I smiled at Boone and realized: for all the love I had for him, we had never once kissed. How perfectly strange.


I paced the ground where Jack had left us, my burnt hand clutching my burnt elbow.

"Linus? Are you there?" I heard a voice in a walkie-talkie.

"Is that Miles?" I asked, recognizing the voice. Ben frantically picked up his walkie-talkie.

"What the hell's that?" Sawyer asked, turning around.

"Miles, where are you?" Ben asked.

"We just got to Hydra Island… we're on our way to the plane," He said, breathless.

"Miles, listen to me, whatever you do, don't blow up that plane!" Ben desperately pleaded.

"We're not gonna blow it up, we're gonna fly it the hell off the island, just get over here now!" Miles demanded.

"How are they gonna fly it?" Hurley asked.

"Miles, how do you intend to fly the plane?" Ben asked through the walkie. I heard a gruff voice on the other end, then I faintly heard Miles' voice call to Claire.

"Miles, it's Kate… did you say 'Claire?'" She asked. "Is she okay?"

"Put the gun down," I heard Miles on the other end, then a gun shot. And another.

"Miles!" Kate yelled into the walkie. "Miles, what happened? Miles, are you there?" I waited for an answer with one hand on my mouth, afraid he might not respond.

"Yeah," Miles answered after a long pause. "It's fine, we're fine. Look, Lapidus is here, we're gonna fix the plane and fly it home, just get here!" He yelled.

"Lapidus!" I called. "He's okay? Lapidus is okay?" I asked.

"Apparently… we can't waste the battery anymore," Ben said, turning the volume down. I leaned back on a tree. After I nearly died for him… he was fine. Figured…


The skies had turned dark very quickly. Suddenly, the ground started shaking. I tried to keep my balance, but I couldn't. I fell down from the tree I was leaning against and landed on my side. I tried to cover my head and gather my bearings.

"Hugo, get out of the way!" I heard Ben yell. When I turned, I saw a tree had come down and pinned Ben. I got onto my feet finally and tried to maintain some stability.

"Ben!" I yelled. The earthquake began to subside. He was pinned really well… it would be difficult to get him out.

"We're gonna get you out of here, alright?" Kate comforted Ben. I moved to the trunk of the tree with Hurley and Sawyer and started to tug at it, barely making it move.

"It's too damn heavy, there's no way we're getting' it off him!" Sawyer yelled.

"We have to try!" Hurley called out.

"One! Two! Three!" Kate yelled. I strained so hard on three, but it barely moved before another earthquake hit. I fell backwards and slid onto my back. The rain was only making conditions worse. When the quake stopped, I stood again.

"What is happening?" Kate asked, panicked.

"I'll tell you what's happening! Locke was right! This island's going down! Sawyer yelled, trying to move the tree.

"Linus, come in!" I heard Miles' voice on the walkie.

"Kate, get his walkie! Sawyer, we need to try to make a lever out of some sticks or something!" I yelled out. He moved away and I searched in the newly broken branches for something sturdy enough to lift the tree trunk.

"Come with you where?" I heard Kate yell into the walkie as I grabbed a thick branch from the ground. A moment later, I was shaken down again. I fell to my knees and clung to the ground for support. When the quake stopped, I hurried to the tree trunk. I pried my branch under the trunk.

"Get your asses over here, we're leaving in an hour!" I heard Miles through the walkie.

"Son of a bitch! How the hell are we supposed to get over there?" Sawyer asked.

"I know how we can get there!" Ben yelled. I tried forcing the trunk up with my lever. "Locke has a boat!" Sawyer paused.

"Where?" He called out.

"Near Jacob's cave! The one Locke took you to!" Locke yelled to Sawyer. He turned to Kate.

"Kate, run out to the cliffs by the old caves… it's about a mile or two that way!" Sawyer yelled to her, pointing to his right. "Make sure that boat's still there! We'll meet you when we get him out!" He yelled. I nodded to her. She grabbed the rifle and ran off.

"Hurley, you lift the back!" I called to him. "Ready?! One! Two! Three!"


After another couple of earthquakes, we finally got Ben loose. He was only a little sore. We hurried off after Sawyer, moving as fast as we could with a sore Ben and Hurley. When we finally got to the cliffs, Kate was sitting with Jack.

"Hey!" Sawyer called.

"What happened?" I yelled to them.

"Oh my God," Hurley said, realizing Jack was hurt. I knelt down beside Jack and saw it was a skinny knife wound he had in his side.

"What the hell happened?" Sawyer asked.

"Locke's dead," Kate said, nodding towards the cliffs. Part of me was so afraid for Jack that he had taken Locke on alone, but the other part of me was so grateful that I didn't have to fight him. "It's over," Kate whispered. Just then, another earthquake hit. I fell backwards and pressed my feet and hands against the rock to stay put.

"It sure don't feel like it's over," Sawyer said.

"Where's Desmond?" I asked Jack.

"He went down into the heart of the island," Jack said. I shook my head. As I was about to ask what that meant, another earthquake hit.

"Lapidus!" Ben called into the walkie after the quake.

"Yeah?" I heard back.

"Frank, how's it going over there? What's your timetable?" Ben asked.

"Don't bother me!" I heard back.

"Sounds like they're making progress," Ben replied. Another quake hit.

"We gotta go now!" Sawyer called as it ended. I agreed. If we were gonna leave this island, we had to get to the other island now and get on that plane.

"I don't understand," Kate said, exasperated, "Locke's dead. Why is this still happening?"

"Because whatever Desmond turned off, I need to turn it back on again," Jack said, holding his wound. "But if it doesn't work, if I don't get it done, you all need to leave now, you need to be on that plane."

"You can come with us, too, Jack," Kate said, standing. "You don't have to do this."

"No I do have to…"

"No, you don't! Let the island sink, Jack…"

"Kate. I can't," Jack replied, shaking his head. Kate stood and walked away, defeated. I stood also, preparing to leave. I didn't want to leave Jack, but I knew it's what had to be done.

"You think you can get that boat across the channel in time?" Jack asked Sawyer.

"Yeah, I can manage," Sawyer nodded. Jack stood, grunting in pain. He shook Sawyer's hand.

"Good luck to you, James," Jack said.

"Thanks, doc. For everything," Sawyer answered. Jack smiled pleasantly at him, then turned to me. I didn't know what to say. I reached my arms around him, knowing it would hurt to bend over to hug me, and held him softly.

"Goodbye, Jack," I said quietly, trying to push back the tears that were already streaming down my face.

"Goodbye, Carmen," He smiled down at me when I pulled away.

"James!" Ben yelled. He tossed him the walkie. "If the island's going down, I'm going down with it," He shrugged.

"Hugo," Jack said, looking to Hurley, "you better get going."

"Huh-uh," Hurley answered, shaking his head. "Now way. You think I'm going down that?" He asked, referring to the ladder. "I'm with you, dude." I looked to Hurley sadly. I hurried to him. He stood and I buried my face in his chest. He held me for a moment.

"This isn't goodbye," Hurley said, sounding just as desperate and sad as me.

"It better not be," I said, knowing fully well that it was. As I let go of him, I forced a small laugh. The three of them hurried off, and we turned and went to the edge of the cliff. Sawyer brought the walkie to his mouth.

"Hey, it's Sawyer, Carmen, and Kate," Sawyer said into it.

"Yeah," I heard someone say back. It wasn't Miles or Lapidus. It sounded like Richard.

"We're on our way down to the sailboat, then we're heading to you. Don't leave without us," Sawyer demanded.

"We're getting' off the ground while there's still ground to get off, so if you wanna go you better get your asses in gear!" I let out a nervous breath.

"Lapidus! Lapidus!" Sawyer yelled into the walkie, to no avail. "Son of a bitch," He mumbled.

"What now?" Kate asked. Sawyer threw away his pack.

"We jump," He said. I looked over the edge of the cliff. It looked possible, if I got a good enough leap away from the rocks, to not die.

"I'll see you at the boat," Kate said, jumping. I watched her hit the water. I threw my gun away from me. Sawyer dove in and I followed, entering the water feet first. I survived the jump and swam to the boat as fast as I could.


We swam as fast as we could from the boat to the shores of Hydra Island. Kate hurried ahead. I realized she'd seen Claire, who sat depressingly on the beach. I ran ahead to Sawyer and I looked out across the trees to see the plane. A crash behind me sounded out, and I turned to see an entire cliff fall off the island.

"Oh, that ain't good," Sawyer said.

"Come on," I said to Sawyer urgently. I ran to Kate and Claire with him, and looked up when I heard the plane gearing up.

"Come on, we gotta go!" Sawyer screamed. "Come on!" He yelled to Kate.

"Claire, come on, please!" Kate pleaded.

"I can't!" She yelled.

"Why?" Kate screamed.

"Look at me!" Claire cried out desperately. "This island's made me crazy, I don't want Aaron to see me like this! I don't even know how to be a mother anymore!"

"Sweetie, none of us do! At least not at first! But you're not alone! Let me help you," Kate pleaded. I looked up at the plane. It was backing up. They were getting ready to go. I looked to Sawyer, who had the same eager look in his eyes. "Come on. Let's go," Kate said. Claire hopped up quickly. We started forward towards the jungle fast. "Sawyer! Tell them to stop! Tell them we're coming!" Kate yelled.

"Lapidus!" I heard Sawyer yelling into the walkie. No one was answering. I ran faster.

"We have to make them stop!" I screamed. I sprinted through the jungle to the plane. I heard it gearing up and I ran faster. After a moment, I was in the clearing in front of the plane. I flailed my arms over my head. I could hear Sawyer yell behind me. "Stop!" I yelled. I heard the engines powering down a little, and I smiled nervously as I ran to the plane. I hurried to the door of the plane. Miles opened the door. Claire and Sawyer were trailing behind me, carrying Kate. I turned to Kate to let her up first, but Claire hurried up to them first. Richard and Miles lowered a rope netting to us. Sawyer pushed Claire up and then Kate, Miles and Richard helping them both to stand once on pushed me up last. I rushed on board after Miles and Richard helped me to stand. I hurried to the first seat I saw and buckled my seat belt.

"We got them!" Richard called to Frank as Sawyer hurried past me.

"Everybody buckle up!" Frank yelled back to us. "Hold on!" Miles and Richard rushed by me and got into seats. The engines picked up speed so abruptly. I clutched onto the arm rests. I looked out the window in my row, but turned away when I saw the jungle and trees. We pulled up and I felt the wheels leave the ground. When I knew we were in the air, I let out a gasp of air. Tears rolled down my cheeks and I even smiled a little. We were going home. I was finally going home.


"Are you ready?" Boone asked me when we reached the doors of the church with Hurley, Shannon and Sayid.

"I am now," I smiled. He opened the door and we went in. I saw a collection of people in the front of the room. Jin and Sun. Libby. Claire and Charlie. Penny and Desmond. They were all here. I walked ahead and started greeting the people I was so close with, the people I had told stories about. I hugged Sun close to me, as well as Jin. I was so happy to see them all again; I didn't care what my last moments were, or what theirs were. We were together now… that's what mattered. I hugged Kate, smiling at her. I hugged Hurley, knowing I hadn't greeted him properly before.

"I told you it wasn't goodbye," He smiled. I laughed back.

"And I suppose it wasn't," I smiled back at him. I hugged Sayid, Shannon, Libby, Desmond, Claire, Charlie, Bernard, Rose… everyone. Sawyer and Juliet came in a little later. I ran to Sawyer when he walked in and hugged him tight.

"Easy, San Diego," He smiled. I clutched him close to me.

"You have no idea how much I missed that," I said, smiling. He smoothed my hair with his hand. I turned to Juliet. She smiled widely and opened her arms to me. I hugged her tighter than I ever had in life. When I pulled back, she smiled at me. I let them say hi to others. I saw John and I walked over to him, smiling.

"I miss you," I said. "The real you."

"I missed you too, Carmen," He said. I wrapped my arms around him and hugged him. I smiled at him, and led him over to Boone. Jack emerged from a back room. I hurried forward and hugged him. I remembered how it felt when I hugged him for the last time; even after all my years, I hadn't forgotten it. Boone hugged Jack, then grabbed my hand.

"Are you ready?" He asked. I leaned in close to him.

"Ready as I'll ever be," I smiled. We walked to a pew and sat down. I leaned against his shoulder. Juliet and Sawyer sat next to me. If I had known death was like this, I never would have been afraid of it. A light flooded through the church as Christian opened the doors. It felt warm and comforting. I relaxed into it, my fingers laced in Boone's.

"I love you," I said one last time to him. He turned his head and looked down at me.

"I love you," He replied. He reached down to me and kissed me softly. As we pulled apart, the light engulfed us.


(Fifty Two Years Later)

I lay in my hospital bed, my grandchild in my arms. My children all sat around me, some light chatter filling the room. Most of them were silent, though. I think they were all afraid of what was about to happen.

"Grandma?" Katie asked me.

"Yes?" I responded, looking down at my granddaughter.

"Why didn't you ever get married?" She asked me. I looked to Jack.

"Katie..." Jack started.

"No, Jack, it's fine. I had to tell you when you were little. I can tell her," I smiled. He leaned back in his chair. "Katie… I fell in love once."

"You did?" She asked.

"I did," I responded, lifting my shaking fingers to my necklace. "He gave me this necklace. And he was everything to me. But he died… he died trying to save me."

"Save you?" She asked. I didn't know how to explain.

"Yes," I smiled.

"Grandma? Can you tell me another story? About the island?" Katie asked. "Make it one with Kate in it." I smiled.

"You always want a story with Kate in it," I smiled. She giggled. "Alright… well one time, Kate heard that Jack was stuck in a cave. She ran down the mountain as fast as she could to save Jack and his friends. What she didn't know was that Jack and his friends could save themselves. They dug their way out of the cave a different way, and they all snuck up on Kate and everyone else trying to dig them out."

"That's funny," Katie giggled out. I chuckled a little, but a coughing spell followed. "Grandma? Did Kate live happily ever after?" I hesitated. In reality, Kate had never really moved on from Jack. But she was content with playing Aunt to Aaron.

"Yes. Yes she did," I said, not sure if I was lying. "Katie, why don't you go with Aunt Julie to get something to eat?" Jack asked. Katie kissed my forehead, then hurried off with my youngest daughter. Jack sat closer to me.

"You know what's funny?" Jack asked. "Four adopted kids and a grandkid later, that story is exactly the same as it was when I was a little boy." I smiled. "Mom… I was right, wasn't I?" I remembered back to when Jack showed me information about the Oceanic Six, and how they all disappeared. I smiled. He accused me of being on the flight, especially since Kate from all my stories looked just like the Kate from the survivors, as did my Sayid, Jack, Sun and Hurley. I got mad at him then, but I had to come clean. He deserved the truth.

"Yes," I said. "Yes, you were." Jack began to cry and he grabbed my hand. My other children stepped forward. "Just listen," I said to them all before they could pummel me with questions. "I was sixteen years old when I left Australia, looking for my baby. My parents took her from me, and gave her to another family. I had been looking for her for such a long time... and I found out she was in Los Angeles. My plane crashed that day. Your Uncle Sawyer was there with me… the whole time. He took care of me. I met the man that I loved there. And I held his hand while he died. I lost some of my best friends… I made some of my best friends. And when I got back, I had to start fresh… pretend it never happened." Something was changing in me. It was time- I could feel it. "But it did," I smiled. I felt tears welling up in me. "And it made me who I am." I felt calm, like I was being taken away by the current of a river. "Every story I ever told you... was true."

"Mom?" Charlie asked me, grabbing my other hand. My speech was slowing... I could feel my pulse slowing.

"I love you all so much," I smiled, letting out a deep breath. "But it's time for me to go." I felt it coming over me quickly. I was slipping away.

"Mom, don't talk like that," Libby insisted. Their voices sounded further away.

"This… isn't goodbye," I smiled. I didn't close my eyes, but the world around me faded and dimmed until it was gone completely.

My goodness, it's over. I really want to cry… I just realized how long I've been working on this, and what this story has taken me through. Also, watching the finale makes me blubber like a big baby every time. Let me know what I should write next! Thank you again for reading, and remember; this isn't goodbye. :)