Raise your glass for the end is near.



Four years -- that's how long he had been doing this; that was how long he had been leading up to this. For four years he got up, and did his "duty". He trudged along, looking at his life through a glass, and slowly coming to realization this was how it was going to be. It was looking in the mirror one morning after a mission, that he knew he wasn't going to allow it. He refused to allow that. He refused.

It took four years for him to make his choice. Four years of lies, abuse, and murders. Four years of being kicked, beaten, shot at, lied to; four years of being a pawn. It took him four years to get used to the hellhole that he called his life. Four years of loss, anger, and pain. Four years of his sanity being toyed with. Four years of being their puppet.

Four years of hell.


Alex gazed at the entrance to the bank, getting in would be the easiest thing for him. He breathed in once more, the plan rushing through his thoughts. Tonight was the night to end it all, and an ending it would be. Turning, he put the car in standby -- he knew for a fact that he was most likely not going to come back for it, but he still couldn't bring himself turn it off. After tonight, there would be no Agent Rider; but he sure as hell wasn't going to let himself get killed. He chuckled at thought; they couldn't kill him -- many had tried, and even more had failed. All those years ago when Ian had trained him, when his missions had perfected him, was not for naught. They had done their job -- he was everything and more.

Killing was no longer a thing that was bane to him; it was no longer something that haunted him at night. It was what he knew, what he was born into, and what he made into. From the day he had been handed over to Ian, he was not little Alex anymore. He was a perfect killing machine in the making. Alex leaned back, taking in the thought. Ian had taught him well; fuck what anyone had said about his uncle -- he loved the man, and everything that his uncle had done was not for selfish reasons, he knew. He knew that one day it would be Alex's turn, and that the boy had to be ready. So for fourteen years that's what he had done, he had trained him. Subtly teaching him the art of survival in the form of little tricks.

Alex breathed in, reaching his hand upwards to clutch the gold cross on his neck. It was was the necklace Ian had worn everyday, his "lifesaver" as the older man had jokingly put it. It was now his necklace; the smallest thing Ian had left behind, but the most meaningful. Alex had never believed in God or anything religious; his uncle had stamped that out of him from the get-go. There was never any "your parents are looking down on you" for him, and he never minded before. But now, he didn't want to believe him. Now, he wanted to believe that Ian and his parents were looking down on him, that they were going to help him. Perfect or not, he was going to need all the luck he could get. This was not just his revenge, but their revenge as well. He pressed the necklace to his lips; "This is for you," Alex whispered before sighing once more and exiting the vehicle.



When Ian died, a bit of him shattered; his only surviving family member was dead. Being an orphan never really bothered him, becuase he was so little when his parents had died; so they were always just people and never really relations. Of course he had missed them, but it never really pained him -- but that suddenly changed. Ian's death reminded him that he was really alone; a fact that had been put on the back burner, but was risen by the untimely death. He was not only an orphan, but the last one standing. He hated it.

But while he was the last one standing, he still had support. It was just them, but it was enough -- it was more than enough. Jack and Tom were his; no matter how many times shit happened to him, they would always be there. They knew, and that was enough. They were his. They really were.

They weren't supposed to die; not yet. Not by something that they almost had no part in. Yet they were; despite this, Jack and Tom were still dead, and it wasn't even their fault.


It was quiet, like it always was. The agents all went about their business as usual; floating from place to place, their feet barely touching ground. That had always unnerved him a bit when he was younger, the nimbleness of the fellow agents; but as time passed, he grew accustomed to the ghost-like movements, welcoming the peace. Alex walked through the halls stone-faced, nodding in acknowledgment every once in a while. The silence and his plan had heightened his senses, like they always did. As he walked, he took note of the agents, wondering if they felt the same way -- no they didn't... they couldn't. They were no different from Blunt and Jones, in fact they were worse. They were drones, trapped in their complacency. Normally he would say it was sad, but they deserved it -- every bit of it.

Alex reached the security for the fourth hall; brushing his hair from his eye, he gazed into the screen allowing it to scan the eye. Once affirmed, the screen disappeared, replaced by a keypad. Alex lazily pinned in his number, a small smile forming in the corner of his lips. Somewhere a light had just flickered on, and a clock was ticking. A few agents eyed him warily, taking in his sudden mood change. He didn't care, let them look; it's not like they could do anything anyway. There was a back-up plan god forbid one of them should put their two brain cells together, and further more, there was a back-up plan for that too. Alex smiled a bit broader; he had a feeling that just for the hell of it, he would be using them.

The screen flashed green, the door opening itself granting him access. Alex resumed his stone-faced mask as he continued walking through the halls. A few people looked up, curiosity beneath their blank, uninterested stares and side way glances. From the looks of them, they were pencil pushers, unlike the agents before. It was understandable why they would stare, he was the Agent Rider -- generation three. This was probably the most excitement they got out of their lives; them he felt sorry for -- even if they had it the easiest in terms of lifestyle. They were the pawns in the vicious chess game of espionage and the most disposable. Alex glanced once more at them before reaching the six hall entrance. He stood, repeated the process once more, and smiled a bit broader as he heard the clock tick in his head. Somewhere a second light had gone off, and the climax was nearing. He could hardly wait.



They were to blame for everything. They had not only stolen his innocence; they had stolen his reputation, his life, his world. They had it held in their palms, and then they crushed it and forced him to watch as the pieces fell. Blackmailing was not enough, they wanted it all -- his complete and absolute loyalty. And when they realized they would never have it, they opted for the next best thing -- himself.

He was their puppet; no matter how many times he had refused them, turned against them. No matter how many times he sat in that chair and defied them with his remarks. No matter how many times he said enough. No matter how many times they promised that the would leave him alone. No matter -- he was always theirs. They had put the strings to his back and played their wonderful little game. But things had changed; they had sealed their own fate when Jack had died -- she was the last thing holding him down. He had nothing left to lose but himself.

The strings were now cut; their little game was over.


He knew where they were; he knew they were waiting as he spoke. He could almost see Blunt sitting while Jones stood, both curious over his sudden midnight visit. Jones had once held a bit of sympathy in his heart; she was the woman who had lost her family, and despite what she was, she had tried at times to help him. But Alex had drawn the line; he couldn't remember when it had changed, when any sympathy Jones had for him had diminished. He couldn't remember then, only now; only the stoic bitch that looked him in the eye as she potentially sent him to his death. Alex was no idiot, he knew she had to do what was necessary for her job, and as annoying and infuriating as it was, he had accepted that. Complaining about that would be childish. His problem was not her doing her job, but toying with him. Little by little she had turned into Blunt, and little by little her mind games and blackmails had increased.

He was almost sure she was behind Tom's death. Alex did not know much about that, he had refused to delve too deep into it for the sake of his sanity. But he was more than sure that Tom's murder was a warning, a reminder to keep Alex in line. A reminder that everyone and everything could be and would be used against him to keep him in place. That was the hardest for him. Jack had died at the hands of an assassin, but Tom... Tom was murdered as a result of his insolence. Alex knew they were heartless, but he never would have thought they would have been that petty, to kill a kid as a punishment. Yes, blackmail he knew; hell, he had even expected Jack to be deported, but never would he have known.

It had haunted him. Jack's death was easy in terms of coping; her eyes were closed and there was no blood. Sleeping... that's what he had thought when he found her. She was curled at the bottom of the stairs, like a kitten resting peacefully. It wasn't until he had gone to wake her that he felt the coldness of her skin, and felt the nothing that should have been her pulse. He had started to hyperventilate a little as the shock surged through him, crawling away from her, before crawling back to cradle her until the ambulance had come. Tom was something else entirely.

For months he couldn't sleep, just laying on his bed drenched in sweat. Everywhere he went, everything he did, he saw him. Tom was always with him, talking to him, laughing at him, staring at him bloodied and accusing. The nights were worse; as soon as the sun set, the nightmarish scene replayed itself in front of him. His walls were suddenly drenched with blood and the broken figure of Tom would lay in front of him. His eyes would always be open, looking upwards in fear. His cheeks were always tear stained and his throat was always opened, split and sliced. He had woken up to Tom's lifeless body when it had happened. He had screamed and froze when he first saw Tom. He knew that he was there when Tom was killed, in some sort of induced sleep. He remembered walking with Tom into the house and being attacked and then blacking out. It wasn't until later after it was all said and done, that he could hear Tom's pleas in his head and it then he had known that he was not completely unconscious when it happened. That what had haunted him at night the most.

Alex shuddered at the thought, remembering what had happened after: the pills, the near suicide, his brief admittance into the asylum. It was the year he would never forget. Alex knew he was more than scarred, more than damaged, but not enough to be broken. But he was more than vengeful. And more than that, he was more than ready. A single tear slid down his cheek. Yes, he was never more ready in his life.



It was the little things as well. It wasn't just the big things that had lead him to his choice, but it was the little things as well. The tiny things they did, that he couldn't have. The big thing were simply the highlights, and his main motivation, but they were not the only ones. One thing Ian had taught him was that it only took a single moment for his life to life to be changed -- for better or worse.

And he had forgotten that.

In the midst of the chaos, he had lost sight of the fact that he, no matter how impossible it seemed, had the power to change his life, to turn it around. But not anymore, he remembered oh so clearly now. Sometimes he felt as if his uncle had known the path that Alex would be on and that he was guiding him step by step. Step by step; step by step Alex was taking back his life, and in a single moment, it would be changed... forever.

For better or worse, his life would change. He would see to that even if it killed him.


He had arrived.

With the single tear etched into he cheek, he faced them. From the moment they saw him, they knew. Thy couldn't have not known. Not when he was standing in front of them, his hollowness and his cracks exposed. For a brief moment, Jones looked concerned; she didn't moved, but she had asked about him, if he were alright. Alex, she had said; and just like that, he had snapped back from his nightmarish reality. The sound of her voice had brought it all back; the fury, the hate, the pain, they had all come flooding back to him. His faced turned into the face of a killer, the fury burning in his eyes as he bore into them.

Blunt stared at him stoically, his expression mocking Alex. Alex smirked darkly, knowing that Blunt was more than prepared for a situation like this. But what Blunt didn't know was that Alex had known, and the he had gotten through everyone of the those barriers. Blunt didn't know, but he would soon.

Somewhere a third light had gone off, and it was at that moment that gas and smoke flooded through the building. Alex heard the shuffles as the agents and workers alike ran to exit the building, on the look out from the perpetrator. Red flashed in Alex's eyes as the sirens blared through the building. Alex chuckled slightly, his chuckled growing bolder and bolder as he realized that this was it. His chuckling erupted into a laughter, mocking and an unknown joy flooding through. He couldn't hear what happened next.

They had moved, trying to talk to him. Blunt looked at him, his mask cracking, exposing the fear underneath. Everything we've done, we've done for you, he said, unapologetic, trying to justify his actions. Fury burned through Alex and that was the last thing that was said. The two muffled shots flew through the room, hitting their targets perfectly. It was not an instant death, that was not what he wanted. The throats... in the throats. A hit positioned that they would die, after a few painful, agonizing moments. The bullets weren't supposed to kill them, choking on their own blood was supposed to.

The emergency water system went off, water spraying everywhere. Alex stood there, the water dripping off of him as he watched with a sick satisfaction. A few more strangled gasps and Jones dead. Alex walked a bit closer to Blunt, stepping over Jones. With gun in hand, Alex stood over the dying man. "A sad plastic fucking mess," Alex whispered, his voice drowned out by the final shot. "A sad plastic fucking mess."



Tonight it was over. Tonight he had called in his debts, and they had paid with their lives.


It was probably the most stupid thing he had ever done in his life, but it didn't matter, it was worth it. It was worth every moment of it. Every ounce of pain, every person who had died, all his sleepless nights, all his tears, they had been paid for. Just like that, Alex felt as if a huge weight had been lifted off of his shoulders. Free... Alex had never thought he would see the day. Never did he think he would be free, but here he was. Alex stood on the edge of the the next building, watching as the people below shuffled to escape the inferno and smoke. Alex looked and realized, it was over; over and done. Yes he would most likely be hunted, but that was nothing. There were no more missions, no more death, no more anything. From here on out, his life was in his hands. For the first time in a long time, he was in control.

It was over now. He didn't know where he was going or what he was doing; all he knew was that he was going. Wherever he ended up, he ended up. As long as he left. Alex turned his back to the chaotic scene, walking in the dark unknown. He was free now. It was over.

Over and done.

Well what did you think? Did you like it/love it/ hate it? I really hoped you liked it.

The idea had been in my head for about two weeks now, or maybe a bit more. I had actually published something similar to this, but deleted it almost immediately, realizing I could have done so much more with it. And that I did. The original one as only a few sentences, a sharp contrast to this.

So I realized that this might have come off to some as a slight bit disturbing, or even morbid (if I push it a bit). I didn't mean for this to come out as a depressing fic, and I hope it didn't. If it did, somewhere PrideIsArrogance is laughing at me XD I was aiming for a sort of liberation thing. And I hope it eventually turned out like that.


Disclaimer: I do not own Alex Rider or the opening lyrics which are from "Carnies" by Chasing Victory.

R&R s'il vous plait. :D