Daylight, or Three Reasons by planet p
Disclaimer I don't own Betraying Reason or any of its characters.
She'd looked up and saw Reason and his German Shepard, Old Man, in the car's rear vision mirror, and she'd wished – more than anything, possibly than breath itself – that it wasn't what she thought – what she knew – it was.
Spectres in the dark, in full daylight.
What is this dream? What is this reality?
She'd almost thought – had almost been willing to lie to herself – that everything was fine, that Reason was fine, that she'd been leaving, but that he'd be fine, if only Bell hadn't spoken, hadn't brought reality crashing back down upon her shoulders, and heart-heavy, she'd had to agree.
She didn't love Bell's father, not the way she'd briefly loved Reason – "Loved?" she wanted to scream, lungs dry – but she knew that this was the only way it could have been, the only way she could give Bell what she needed – a stable home – and give her father what he deserved, a family, a daughter (and a wife).
Reason had met the end of his own device, she told herself – needed to convince herself – though she knew that if she'd loved him better, if she'd saved him, she would have been forfeiting Bell's life – because she would never had been able to stay with Bell's father if she could be with Reason, as much as she loved Bell, so she'd pretended that she didn't see the end, pretended that everything was fine, that everything would be fine… and maybe, in time, it would be.
She could only hope that that was what Reason's spectre had come to tell her, that she'd done the right thing, that he forgave her. How she needed him to understand, to forgive her!
That night, she dreamed of the forest, dreamed of the day that they'd be together again in another life.
The letter had come, and she'd not shown it to him. Why hadn't she shown it to him? She tried to convince herself that it was because she was scared and confused, but really, she knew that it wasn't for any of these reasons. That letter had meant an end, a victory, so she'd not shown it to Reason because then she felt as though she'd be obliged to stay on, trapped into this life as his mother had been, until she'd escaped.
She felt awful to be abandoning him, too, but it was not only that, not only a fright of commitment to something and someone she'd only accidentally stumbled upon whilst her real life awaited her back 'home.'
It was because of what he'd done, because she'd known that she could not allow him to continue doing what he was doing – that poor boy who'd lost his arm and was still in hospital, she kept seeing that poor boy – she could not be a part of his life if that was the direction it was taking.
So she'd decided to leave.
In not telling him about the letter, she'd thought that maybe he'd get caught; that he'd be stopped. But not killed – never killed.
He'd had to be stopped, she'd known that. She'd known that for some time, so she'd with held the letter. And when she'd tried to stop him from leaving, she'd not fought hard enough. She'd wanted out, she'd wanted back into her old, mundane life.
It had been a selfish move, but she had to convince herself that she'd left the ending open. That she'd left the choice with Reason. Let him decide what sort of a person he really wanted to be, and his punishment.
She'd decided to leave him, but she'd not forced him into anything, she'd not forced him to leave also. Perhaps, she thought, he had been unable to live with himself, and if she'd just shown him that letter, if she'd just shown him that letter, he wouldn't have set off for a last confrontation, a last showdown.
Perhaps, if she'd have stayed, she'd have been able to help him.
But she hadn't stayed, and he'd made his mind up. (She could not feel guilty for his decisions, she told herself; he'd known himself better than anyone.) She'd had to face who she was, and maybe that was what he'd done, too.
She'd not sent him away to be killed, let him go to be killed; she'd let him go to face up to who he was, to find himself.