Here's the next chapter, sorry for the wait. It's one of a few Christmas Presents to you lovely readers. Enjoy!

Esther breathed in and out slowly, trying to remain calm as she scanned the beach, not even really noticing the people on the beach, her eyes only paying attention to the graves, the five graves on one side of the camp, and a single lone grave on the other side.

She knew who's grave the single one must have been. The one they didn't care about, the one she did care about.


She went to move to another tree to get a closer look, but she was hit from behind and she fell to the ground.

.. ..

Got it.

Maya put down her sniper rifle and turned to the man and woman at her side.

'bullseye,' Devika praised her youngest sister.

'slightly off centre,' Adem said scathingly.

'Adem,' Devika hit him on the shoulder and shot him a warning look. 'Maya's only a child,' she reminded him, placing a hand on her stomach.

'I'm not,' Maya insisted.

'you just turned twelve, Maya,' Devika said. 'I'm almost twenty,' she added as if to outline the age difference even more.

'but I still got better at my age now then you did when you were my age,' Maya argued. 'same with Shrina, Mohinder and Tara. Oh, and Esther!' She exclaimed and Devika let out a laugh at the memory of Esther almost shooting her own foot off.

'oh, of course, Esther!' Devika laughed. She passed Maya back the gun and stood behind her.

'let's see if you can do better than her while temporarily blinded?' Devika placed her hands over Maya's eyes and Maya shot blindly, hitting the target in the same spot as before.

Devika let out a laugh.

'you'll make a fine assassin, Maya,' she kissed the top of Maya's head.

.. ..

Aryel and Sayid tied up the woman, against a tree and watched as she slouched forward, her hair falling in front of her face.

'what is your name?' Sayid asked her.

The woman didn't answer; in fact, Aryel noticed that she looked as if she was the definition of broken.

'who are you?' Sayid demanded.

She still didn't answer, and Aryel noticed her hand, her left hand to be exact.

'you're engaged,' Aryel spoke up. 'how long have you been engaged?'

Sayid looked at Aryel, wondering where she was going with this, and if this tactic would work.

The woman's head moved up slightly, but she didn't shake the hair out of her face.

'for...forty-nine days,' the woman whispered, and Aryel was sure no one else saw it, but Aryel did. She saw the teardrop fall to the ground, and Aryel knew she was broken.

'why are you here?' Aryel knelt down in front of her, knowing that there must have been a specific reason she was here, knowing that a women this broken didn't hang around a beach just for the Hell of it. There was a reason.

'I'm here for my fiancée,' she whispered.

'what's your fiancée's name?' Aryel asked.

The woman slowly lifted her head, making her hair move out of her face, and Aryel stared at her in shock.

'Ethan,' she said.

The woman watched as everyone around Aryel looked completely shocked, many looking as if they wanted to say something, many looking angry. But Aryel stared at her.

'someone get Maya down here,' Aryel said softly, staring at the woman, still in shock.

'...why?' Claire asked, she hadn't seen the women's eyes, only Aryel had before the woman had looked down again. No one understood.

'she's in the Hatch. Get her down here,' Aryel said softly. 'now.'

Claire looked unsure, but Sun next to her began running off to the Hatch. Aryel moved behind the woman, to the tree, and she took a hold of the rope.

'what are you doing, Aryel?' Sayid asked her.

'I'm untying her,' she shrugged.

He paused. 'and why would you do that?'

'I just want her to see Ethan's gr-'

'we can't, Aryel,' Sayid said.

'Sayid,' Aryel began to argue in the women's defence.

'we do not know if she is lying, Aryel,' Sayid said. 'she could be making it all up.'

'I'm not,' the woman said. 'I swear, I'm not.'

Aryel stared at the woman as she broke down again, staring across at Ethan's grave.

Aryel sighed.

.. ..

Sun was not entirely sure what she would come across, entering the Hatch, but what she found, Maya, Oz, Liliana, Jack and Locke, all lying on the ground, unconscious, was not what she expected.

There was a sound, a sound coming from the other room, and Sun turned and rushed there, knowing that it was where Sammy and Michelle were, and she hoped that whatever had happened to the five in the other room, the two injured ones had been spared.

She saw that Michelle had woken up, and Sun gave her a small smile.

'Michelle, how are you?' Sun asked, very distractedly, looking around, for anyone who could have caused what had happened out in the other room.

'Sun,' Michelle smiled. 'it's good to see you. I'm fine. Do you know where my wife is?'

Sun gave a smile. 'I'll look into it,' she said softly before she retreated.

She walked back out, just as she heard a groan, several groans in fact, from Maya, Oz and Locke.

'I'm gonna kill him,' Maya muttered angrily.

.. ..

'so,' Deniz sat down next to Lucy and Mindy. 'do you have any idea where the diaries...went.' she finished slowly when she realized that Mindy was engrossed with them.

'I let Mindy read them,' Lucy shrugged.

Deniz stared at the two of them.

'what?' Lucy asked, looking up at her, noticing the look on her face.

'that was our secret. Just the two of us,' Deniz said.

'well now it's the three of ours secret,' Lucy shrugged.

.. ..

'what happened?' Sun asked as the five got their bearings back and all looked around, still suspicious.

'it was Michael,' Jack said.

'what?' Sun asked in shock. 'why would he -?'

'he went after his kid, Walt, is it?' Liliana asked and Maya nodded. 'he went after Walt.'

Jack headed over to the gun vault and he took out a few guns.

'what are you doing, Jack?' Locke asked him.

'Going after him,' Jack said matter-of-factly, passing Locke a gun.

'you can't go!' Sun exclaimed quickly, remembering suddenly why she had been sent here.

'she's right,' Liliana agreed. 'Michelle and Sammy need you.'

'no,' Sun waved it away. 'it's not that. One of Them is at the camp. And Aryel wants Maya down there to help her out.'

'I'll-' Jack began too.

'no,' Oz said to him. 'you and Locke should track down Michael.'

'who will-' Jack began.

'Jack. You don't always have to be the hero,' Maya said, somewhat gently. 'Oz and I will go down to the beach, and we'll have Sayid, Aryel and Jason to help us, people like that.'

'well, what about-' Jack began again, looking into the next room.

'I'll look after Michelle and Sammy,' Liliana said. 'don't worry.'

'I'll help her,' Sun said. 'don't worry,' she repeated. 'just find Michael.'

.. ..

'I never would have pegged her for the type with a kid,' Layla said as they watched Yoon, Sun and Min-Hee across the beach.

'yeah, I know,' Lucian said in awe.

At that moment, Maya and Oz rushed onto the beach, searching with their eyes for Aryel.

'Maya!' Aryel exclaimed across the beach.

Maya located her standing with Sayid by a tied up woman, a woman who looked familiar to Maya, a woman she hadn't seen in years.

''d you find her?' Maya asked softly as she made her way over there.

'she was watching the beach. She didn't look like she was about to attack, she was just watching. That's why she interests me,' Aryel said. 'Sayid thinks it was a tactic. What about you?'

'she's not dangerous,' Maya said. 'just...'

'broken?' Aryel asked and Maya looked at her quickly. 'yeah, I got that vibe from her too.'

Maya looked at the woman, almost pityingly.

'who is she to you?' Oz asked softly.

'what?' Maya asked sharply.

'we both know that she means something to you,' Aryel said to Maya. 'so what is it?'

Maya stared at her.

.. ..

Maya, a nineteen year old Maya, a pregnant Maya, entered the small clinic and made her way to the front desk.

'uh, hi,' she said to the disinterested receptionist. 'does Dr Sahin have a patient now?'

'she's on her lunch break. You can make an appointment if you want,' she shrugged.

'she in her office?' Maya asked.

'yeah, but she's still on her lunch break. I can get you an appointment afterwards, yeah?'

'I'll just go to her office now-'

'no!' the receptionist exclaimed. 'she's not to be disturbed during her lunch break, she gets very annoyed when she is!'

The door to the office in question opened.

'what's going on out here?' the doctor asked sharply.

'well-' the receptionist started.

'hey, sis,' Maya said. 'so, you're the expert of the family in this kind of thing,' she put a hand on her stomach.

'what's going on?' Esther sighed, leading her into the office and closing the door.

'I think there's something wrong with the baby. I'm getting cramps and-'

Esther smirked. 'honey, I think you think it's labour. Right?'

'right,' Maya sighed.

.. ..

'have you seriously never skinned a boar?' Jason laughed, watching as Laura struggled to do so.

'I know the theory of it, okay?' she said impatiently. 'I can do this, okay? I've skinned plenty of other animals.'

'okay, sure, you can do this,' he said before he sat back and watched her struggle with the boar.

She watched him out of the corner of her eye, trying to ignore the huge smirk on his face.

'okay, fine,' she snapped. 'help me.'

Jason complied, moving behind her and taking a grip on her hand with the knife, slowly showing her how to skin it with precision. He was aware that as he did so, he distracted her immensely, as he placed a kiss to her cheek.

Laura turned and went to kiss his lips, but at that moment Jack and Locke walked into the clearing. The two stopped and looked at Laura and Jason for a moment before they started walking again.

'what are you two doing?' Jason asked.

Jack looked at him. 'what about you two?'

'he's teaching me to skin a boar,' Laura said brightly. 'so what are you two doing?'

'Michael took a gun and went after Walt,' Locke said. 'so we're trying to find him before something happens to him. Would you like to join us?'

Jason and Laura looked at each other.

'why not?' they said in unison.

.. ..

Kat could not help but smile as she entered the room to see Emmy and Josie talking and laughing, before she realized that she didn't actually like Emmy.

'Josie,' Kat said and she looked up. 'I need-'

'hey, Kat, have you seen Esther?' Gus hurriedly entered the room. Without waiting for an answer, he pressed on. 'we've been doing therapy at her place, and I went over there, and there was a note from her, simply saying she was not going to be there. I need to know she hasn't done anything drastic. Have you seen her?'

'no,' Kat said. 'but where's your girlfriend at? We need her.'

Gus looked surprised; Kat was known to refuse to work with Hayden at all, so this must be good.

'she's back home. Why-?' he began to ask, but she cut him off.

'Carlos, Cam and co. Are with Ziska over at Hydra. That means I'm low on my people for awhile. And I need my people now.'

Gus nodded and left the room, evidently going back to searching for Esther.

'what do you need?' Josie said to Kat.

'Michael's coming. Jack and some of the others are following. I need a team. That's where you come in. I already have Tom, Juliet, Josh, Krist, Scar, I've even got Matt. I need a big team.'

'what about Emmy?' Josie suggested.

Kat's eyes flicked over to her. 'can't. She wouldn't know the first thing about these things. I'll meet you back home in ten minutes,' she said before leaving.

'well, then,' Emmy said, offended. 'I know when I'm not wanted.'

.. ..

Aryel, Oz and Maya approached Sayid and the woman, and Aryel stood in front of her again.

'so, I'm back,' Aryel said cheerfully to the woman. She didn't look up, but she seemed to relax a bit, it seemed as if Sayid had been giving her a hard time.

'now, why did you need Maya?' Sayid asked her and the woman's head moved up a bit.

Maya and Aryel ignored Sayid and they both knelt down in front of the woman.

'Esther...' Maya trailed off softly and eyebrows were raised around the group that were watching. 'now, I know I said the next time I'd see you, I'd kill you, but, why are you here?'

The woman, Esther, looked up and she had a mixture of sadness, pain and anger in her eyes.

'who was it who killed Ethan?' Esther asked clearly and strongly.

.. ..

'so, do you actually know where Michael was heading?' Laura asked.

'he was going after Walt,' Jack said.

'yeah?' Jason asked. 'and do any of us actually know where that is?'

They all looked at each other.

'if we just follow the trail he leaves, we'll be fine,' Locke said.

.. ..

'why do you want to know that?' Sayid asked Esther, but she kept her mouth closed where he was concerned, she had already decided that she didn't want to speak to him, just Aryel and Maya.

'remember,' Aryel began. 'she said that she was his fiancée.'

'you're engaged?' Maya asked in surprise.

'was,' Esther snapped. 'I was engaged. Until whoever it was, a blonde man and a blonde woman shot him.'

They all stared at her in shock. How did she know-?

'I was there,' she whispered. 'I saw the blonde man and woman each put three bullets in him, I saw none of you care at all. I was there. I had to be held back and a hand placed over my mouth so I did not scream or jump down there. I saw you all stand there, not caring at all. And I was up in a tree, being held tightly by a friend because I was falling apart, as you all didn't care for the life that was just taken. I was there. And I want to talk to the two people who shot him, so they can know that they took away someone's happiness, that they took away the chance of a future that means something other than sadness. I was there,' she repeated; as if she hadn't gotten her point across quite so clearly.

Maya tilted her head to the side in thought.

'you really loved him, huh?' she asked.

'still do,' Esther muttered angrily, shooting them all death glares.

Maya and Aryel shared a look before they walked away with Sayid and Oz, ready to discuss how the hell to deal with this.

.. ..

'for those of you who don't know,' Kat began as her team assembled at her house, ready to go. 'this is a mission to show them who is boss.'

Hayden scoffed.

Kat ignored her and pressed on. 'I will be the one primarily doing the talking, and Josie will be with me, as they know her already. Josh is also going to be with us. The rest of you will have assault rifles and will set up fires as we talk. Just to show them there is more than three of us. Juliet, Hayden and Scar will be looking after the prisoner we will be giving back.'

They all stared at her in shock.

'what?' she sighed.

'who are we giving back?' Juliet asked.

'Evangeline. She is of no use to us anymore. Let's get moving. We don't have much time.'

.. ..

Maya blearily opened her eyes and looked around the room, a hospital room. She didn't remember what happened. She remembered that there was blood, that she had been bleeding, that Esther had surgeons fix her, making sure her baby would be okay, that he would be fine.

But Maya knew that something had gone wrong. She could feel it within her.

So when she noticed Esther at the end of the bed, she didn't know why it surprised her that she had a grave expression on her face.

'what?' Maya sighed. 'what happened?'

'there was a complication...' Esther trailed off. 'the baby, he-'

'Chander,' Maya interrupted. 'can you call him Chander?' she asked, trying to prolong the inevitable, when she knew what it was that Esther had to say, but not wanting to hear it.

'Chander...' she trailed off. 'after dad?'

'yes,' she said, as if it was obvious to all, which it was.

'it's a nice name.'

'for the love of God, just say it!'

'he didn't make it!' she blurted out before covering her mouth in shock that she had been that blunt with her own sister, before she quickly ducked as Maya threw a book from next to the bed at her.

'Jesus Christ,' Esther muttered, as she moved again. 'I'm sorry, we did all that-' she ducked as another book was thrown. '-we could, but it took longer than we thought, and there was too much damage, and we had to tie-' another book was thrown. '-your tubes.'

Maya halted halfway through throwing another book.

'...what?' she asked. 'does that mean what I think it means?'

'w-what do you think it means?' Esther asked cautiously.

'that I can't have any children, ever...' she trailed off. ''

Esther nodded slowly. 'yeah...that's what it-'

The rest of her sentence was cut off when Maya succeeded in hitting her in the face with the book.

.. ..

'Who are we to tell anyone what they can or can't do?' Locke asked Jack, who looked at him, almost critical at what he had said.

Jason and Laura exchanged a look, knowing that Jack and Locke, no matter what, would always have differing opinions.

Suddenly there were gunshots and they all looked in the general direction they came from.

'Michael!' Jack yelled out.

Locke, Jason and Laura each reached out to him.

'Jack! Get down,' Locke told him, but Jack had ignored him, and he began running off.

The other three followed reluctantly.

.. ..

'she's insane,' Oz announced.

'runs in the family,' Maya sighed.

'so she's family?' Sayid asked.

'she's my older sister,' Maya sighed. 'I haven't seen her in four years, ever since...don't worry,' she finished. 'I hate her with utmost passion,' she sighed in a deadpan voice.

Oz looked at her, slightly concerned for her wellbeing, but she either didn't notice or she totally ignored him.

'so what are we going to do?' Aryel asked.

'she seems harmless enough,' Oz again looked at Maya. 'is she?'

'yeah, I think she is,' Maya crossed her arms over her chest and she looked back at Esther.

'well, she seems out for the blood of Jason and Laura,' Aryel said.

Maya let out a hollow laugh. 'Esther could never kill someone on purpose. She's a doctor. She-'

'Jason and Yoon are doctors,' Sayid said. 'they have no problem killing.'

'she's a fertility doctor,' she corrected. 'she brings life, she doesn't take it away.'

'but they killed the guy she loved,' Oz said. 'it may just be me, but if someone killed the one I loved, I would be out for revenge.'

The other three stared at him, as if wondering who the Hell had impersonated him, Oz was a peaceful guy, and it was not like him to say something like that.

'what?' he asked. 'I would be pissed.'

'rightfully so,' Maya agreed. 'he's right. I was out for revenge when it happened to me.'

'but is she out for revenge?' Sayid asked.

None of them had an answer.

.. ..

Deniz walked past the woman who was tied up, annoyed at Lucy. It wasn't fair. The two of them had done everything together since day one, they had explored together, they had theorized together, they had agreed to keep their discovery a secret from everyone else.

And now Lucy was telling Melinda their secrets.

It wasn't fair, and it wasn't right.

'you look just like your mother, still,' a voice said, and Deniz turned, to see the tied up woman talking to her.

'shut up,' Kate told the woman, but Deniz didn't pay a lot of attention to that.

'you don't know who I am, you're just trying to scare me, aren't you?' Deniz asked her.

The woman smiled as unbroken as she could. 'you're a lot like Devika, Deniz. But you have those eyes of your father.'

'I said, shut up,' Kate said.

'but you're here, without either of them, makes me wonder,' she mused. 'you with Maya?'

'I am,' Deniz said slowly. 'who are you?'

'your mothers sister, don't you remember me? It's only been four years,' she said.

Deniz stared at her. 'Esther, right?'


Kate turned to Esther and opened her mouth.

'yeah, I know, "shut up",' Esther said. 'I'm done anyway.'

.. ..

'what do you mean you've lost the trail?' Jack asked Locke several hours later.

'I need light to follow it,' Locke told him and Jason passed him the torch Jack had lit and given him.

'I think we'd better head back,' Locke said to Jack.

'Just find the trail, John,' Jack said to him.

'I've lost the trail,' Locke told him.

'why don't we just make camp, and start again in the morning when it's light?' Laura asked, somewhat tired at the two of them arguing.

'no, we're going to keep going, Locke's going to find us the trail again,' Jack said.

'or you could listen to the only sane one here, and make a fire, otherwise it'd be quite hard to have a civilized conversation with you all.'

The four turned to see a blonde woman there.

'who are you?' they all asked.

'I believe you've met my daughter,' the woman said, and as if on cue, Josie walked out and looked at her the woman.

'all clear,' she said softly.

Jason lifted his gun, ready to shoot at Josie, but a bullet whizzed through the air, grazing his neck. He put his hand to his neck to feel blood.

'It'd probably be best if we just keep our hands at our sides, gentlemen,' a man said, walking out of the jungle too. 'and lady, of course,' he nodded towards Laura.

'Where's Michael?' Jack asked.

'I reckon it's about time we had a talk,' Katarina said.

.. ..

Aryel brought the water to Esther's lips, watching as she drank it thirstily.

'I'm sorry, you know,' Aryel said softly, hoping no one could hear her at all, apart from the tied up woman.

'for what?' Esther muttered.

'for Ethan. For your fiancée dying because of us,' she said. 'I'm sorry.'

Esther gave a grim smile.

'at least one of you is.'

.. ..

'sit down, Jack, I insist,' Kat said. 'I come in peace.'

'how do you know our names?' Jason asked.

'remember, the chick who betrayed us is standing right here,' Laura rolled her eyes.

'it's not betrayal if you're not on that side to begin with,' Josh said.

'You took Walt,' Jack said.

'he's fine,' Josh said. 'he's a very special boy, and he's being taken care of,' he said, remembering just how well Scar did of that.

'you said you wanted to talk,' Jason said. 'so you going to start?'

'how long have you been on this Island?' Kat asked him conversationally.

'about fifty days,' Laura said.

'fifty days, wow, that ain't that long, is it?' Josh said, almost condescendingly.

'seems like you think you own the place,' Kat agreed. 'but let me ask you something, when you go over to a man's house for the first time, do you put your feet up on the coffee table? Do you eat food that doesn't belong to you? Open up things that aren't meant to be opened? You know, somebody a whole lot smarter than anybody here once said: "Since the dawn of our species man's been blessed with curiosity."'

'someone else also said "curiosity killed the cat",' Josie added.

'guess that's why cats have nine lives,' Laura shot back.

'This is not your island,' Kat informed them, suddenly turning colder than before. 'This is our island. And the only reason you're living on it is because we let you live on it.'

Jack scoffed. 'I don't believe you. I think you've got one guy up there with a gun. I think there's not as many people as you want us to believe. I think if you had any real strength, you wouldn't have had to send a spy – Ethan and Josie. And now that woman you sent to our camp today.'

Kat looked at Josie.

'Esther...I'm on it,' Josie said before taking a gun from Josh and running off.

'hmmm, you think that, hey?' Kat said to Jack, back to the conversation. 'anyone want to prove him wrong?' she called out into the night and they all watched as torches were lit in a circle around the group.

Kat smirked at the look on Jack's face.

'We've got a misunderstanding, Jack - your people, my people,' she said. 'So listen carefully. Right here, there's a line. You cross that line; we go from misunderstanding to something else completely. Now, give me your weapons, turn around, go home.'

Jack stared at her. 'no.'

Laura and Jason sighed in unison at how stubborn he was being and threw their guns down on the ground. What the Others didn't know was that the two of them were also wearing ankle holsters with a gun in them.

'Jack, maybe...' Locke said.


Kat sighed. 'you really are difficult, you know that?' she said. 'bring her out, Hayden!' she called out.

.. ..

'go on,' Juliet urged Hayden.

'I can't,' Hayden whispered. 'that's my brother out there. What would he-?' she couldn't finish her sentence.

'Please?' Hayden said. Juliet sighed and grabbed Eva's arm.

As soon as they were gone, Scar turned to Michael. 'don't worry about Walt, Michael. He's okay. I've been looking after him.'

Hayden gave her a quizzical look.

Scarlett was not one to act like that, ever.

So what the Hell made this kid different?

.. ..

'now, you don't know this woman,' Kat said, taking the bag off Eva's head. 'but this is Evangeline Mercier. Yeah, I can see that name is ringing a bell to you. Mercier. Trying to think about it now, aren't you? Well, I'll help you out. Mercier. Lucy and Mindy, the twins back at camp. This is Evangeline, their mother. Now, would you really be able to live with yourself if you let this woman get shot in front of you, making her daughters orphans? And to let me lose my sister?' she added as an afterthought and Jack looked surprised. 'yeah, you probably don't care about that, I mean, I don't. But it's your call. I'm going to count down. 3, 2-'

Jack threw his gun down, as did Locke.

'nice seeing you,' Kat said as she and Josh picked up the guns and she pushed Evangeline towards them before the torches went out and they left.

Laura pulled the gag off Evangeline.

'damn it, she wasn't going to shoot me!' Evangeline exclaimed.

'hi,' Laura smirked. 'I'm Laura. Nice to meet you.'

.. ..

Deniz stared across the fire at Lucy and Mindy reading through yet another one of the diaries, and she didn't even notice as Roxy sat down next to her.

'you know, she still loves you,' Roxy said brightly.

'I'm sorry?' Deniz asked.

'I've been watching you, all today, and you seem angry, angry at Lucy and Mindy, at least. And I don't know what it is Lucy's sharing with Mindy, that you don't want her to, and I'm not going to ask, but... Mindy seems like Lucy's best friend as well as sister. And they thought each other to be dead for almost two months. They need time to catch up. It's not that she doesn't love you,' Roxy said simply before she got up and left Deniz to her thoughts.

.. ..

Jack, Laura, Jason, Locke and Evangeline walked onto the beach and several people looked up.

'Jack,' Kate said. 'how'd it go? Did you find him?'

'no,' Jack said to them all. 'but we will. And we were returned with a prisoner of the Others. This is Evangeline.'

At this name, Lucy's and Mindy's heads shot up and they ran over, almost tackling her to the ground in a death grip. Eva held the two of them tight and smiled widely.

Aryel and Maya walked over, with not very happy expressions on their faces.

'Jason, Laura,' Maya said. 'we need your help.'

.. ..

The four walked back over to where Oz and Sayid were with Esther.

'need help breaking her?' Jason asked.

'no,' Oz said. 'she wasn't even that hard to break.'

'then what do you need?' Laura asked.

'so, while you guys were off doing God knows what, in fact, I don't really want to know what the two of you do when al-'

'we were trying to find Michael,' Laura said.

'yeah, okay, that's maybe what you did for part of the day, but while you did that, we had to deal with this woman who wanted to speak with only the two of you.'

'why?' Jason asked.

'well, we'll let her tell you that,' Maya said.

'okay, this is Esther,' Aryel said to Jason and Laura. 'she's the sister of Maya, and the fiancée of the late Ethan. Who you two shot,' she reminded them.

The two exchanged a look. Oh shit.

Esther stared at them.

'this is Jason and Laura,' Maya said to her before Aryel, herself, Oz and Sayid took a few steps away.

'hi...' Laura trailed off.

'why...why'd you have to shoot him?' Esther asked them softly, heartbroken.

'he was trying to kidnap my sister again,' Jason said, he was not going to show any sympathy for this woman when her fiancée was the one who had started it all.

'he was following orders!' she hissed. 'he didn't want to do it, the only reason he did the first time was because it was going to save her. She was in danger without people who knew of the situation beforehand. Ethan knew that danger, and so he tried to help her. And you two were so trigger happy that you didn't really think of why he was doing it; you just wanted to protect the ones you love. But I want to look you in the eyes and see that you both know what you did to me, that you both know that you have ruined the rest of my life. I want to see you two realize that I'm broken, and you two are the ones to blame.'

Laura met her eyes but Jason couldn't bring himself to.

'I'm sorry,' she breathed softly, not being able to get her voice any louder than that. 'I'm sorry.'

Jason refused to look at her still, and just walked away.

Laura looked after him in shock, she would have thought that Jason would have known how she felt, what, with what happened to his wife and all, but he didn't.

'he's sorry too, he just can't say it,' Laura said, before following him. 'what's your problem?' she demanded of Jason as she followed him back to his tent.

'I'm never going to feel sorry for One of Them,' he said. 'not after what they tried to do.'

'she just lost her fiancée,' Laura said.

'I know,' he muttered.

'like, two weeks ago,' she said.

'I know,' he repeated.

'because of us,' she said.

'dammit, I know!' he turned around to face her and she was taken aback by how pained he looked.

'Jason...' she trailed off. 'your wives' death wasn't your fault. You know that...right?'

Jason paused.

'you know that, right?' she repeated.

'right,' he sighed and she leaned up, putting her arms around him.

.. ..

He stood next to a tree as he smoked, and he suddenly became very aware of someone right behind him.

'evening,' the soft voice of Josie floated into his ear.

'didn't even hear you coming,' Luka said.

'good. Because, you know, I've been in this tree longer than you've been standing there,' she said.

Luka rolled his eyes and looked over his shoulder to see that she was currently hanging upside down from a tree with her head next to his.

'why you here?' he asked her.

Josie nodded her head towards Esther. 'why's she here? Did she say?'

'she's here because of Ethan,' he sighed.

'I thought she would be,' she nodded.

The two lapsed into silence for a minute.

'help me down, would you?' she asked, and he turned around, grabbing a hold of her by her waist a she let go, and he caught her fully.

'glad to know I've got someone to catch me when I fall,' Josie smiled, placing a kiss to his cheek before she walked away.

She would get Esther in a few hours.

.. ..

All around the beach camp everyone was sleeping. All of them, everyone but Esther. And now it seemed whoever was walking towards her.

Esther didn't say a thing as the woman untied her.

'come with me,' the woman whispered, and Esther noted a slight limp as she walked, and she followed her, to where Esther had been planning on going to begin with.

Ethan's grave.

Esther shakily walked over there and she knelt down in front of the grave, the woman standing a few feet behind her.

'Ethan...' she whispered softly. 'I love you, Ethan...' she breathed softly, tears in her eyes.

She knelt there for some time, before the other woman put a hand on her shoulder.

'I'm sorry, I really am, have to go now,' she said. 'before people wake up and realize what's going on.'

'okay,' Esther said and she stood up and threw her arms around the woman.

'thank you,' she said before she rushed off.

'no problem...' the woman murmured after her.

.. ..

The next morning, Sayid and Oz walked over to Maya as she walked back onto the beach.

'what did you do?' Sayid asked her.

'excuse me?' Maya looked genuinely confused.

'what made you let her go?' Sayid asked.

'she's gone?' Maya asked. They nodded grimly. 'I had nothing to do with it.'

'I don't believe you,' Sayid said.

'well, I do,' Oz said to him, although he still looked like he thought Maya had done it.

'I didn't,' Maya said. 'I would never let her go.'

Sayid stared at her.

'what's going on?' Kate approached them all.

'someone let her go last night,' Maya said. 'they think it was me.'

'it couldn't have been,' Kate said to Sayid. 'she was with me all night at the Hatch.'

Sayid looked at Maya as she walked away, back to her tent. Aryel stared at her as she passed, and Maya caught her eye for a second before she looked away.

.. ..

Jack took a seat next to Constance, Laura and Jason.

'can we help you?' Constance said.

'you've all killed One of Them,' Jack said.


'I was told you were a cop,' Jack said to Constance.

'yeah, I am,' she nodded.

'and you're FBI, and you're a soldier?' he asked Laura and Jason respectively and they nodded.

'what are you getting at, Jack?' Laura sighed.

Jack looked at them all intently.

'How long do you think it would take to train an army?' he asked them.

The three exchanged a look.

.. ..

Oz walked into Maya's tent after her and she turned around.

'you think I did it,' she stated, almost angrily.

'yeah...' he nodded slowly. 'yeah, I'm sorry, I kind of do.'

'why?' she demanded.

'because...she's your sister,' he said simply and she opened her mouth to snap furiously, but he started talking again. 'look, I know you say you hate her, but I think even if you did hate her, you would want her to be safe, somewhere, within you. So...I think you did it. It's okay if you did, Maya. I won't tell anyone.'

He began walking out, but she stopped him with only a few words.

'she killed my baby.'

Oz turned and looked at her in aghast.

'yeah,' Maya nodded. 'I told you a couple weeks ago that I couldn't have kids, and she's the reason why. I had been pregnant, I went into labour. My baby was in distress...she couldn't save him in time... in fact; there was so much damage to me, that my tubes had to be tied. That's why I hate her. She ruined my chance to have children, ever. So...don't you dare assume I want her to be safe.'

Oz took a step towards her and brushed her hair out of her eyes.

' you still think it was me?' she asked softly.

'no. I don't.'

And then he kissed her deeply, a move that shocked her beyond all belief, but a move she didn't mind.

In fact, she kissed him back.

.. ..

Maya turned suddenly as someone entered her tent.

'what do you want?' she asked the woman.

'how much do you hate your sister?' the woman questioned.


'enough to want her to be a prisoner?'

Maya didn't answer.

'enough to want her to be in pain?'

Still no answer.

'enough to want her dead?'

Maya bit her lip. The other woman smirked.

'I didn't think so.'

'what do you want?' Maya asked her.

'I want you to go up to the Hatch for the night,' she told her.

'...why?' Maya asked.

'because I need you to have an alibi. For when I let your sister go.'

Maya's eyes were wide. 'come again?'

'I'm letting your sister go,' she bit her lip. 'it's the right thing to do. They'll think it's you who did it, so you need an alibi. Go to the Hatch. Right now.'

Maya slowly nodded. 'okay...okay, fine. I'm guessing you don't want anyone to know it was you?'

'no one is to know.'

'okay, fine,' she repeated, picking up a water bottle. 'I'm leaving now.'

She began walking out, but then she turned around and looked at the woman.

'tell me first, why are you doing this?' she wondered.

Aryel gave a grim smile.

'She came here to grieve...she didn't come here for a fight.'

.. ..

I think I'm falling in love with Aryel :) it's happening, guys, it really is. I reckon she's awesome. Anyway, Merry Christmas!

Also, to you all: poll on my authors page.

Also, please check out my two new one shots :)