Alec's Turn
by pari106

"…she kept thinking that if she ran far enough, and fast enough, she could forget all the
things they made her do. But, sooner or later, it always catches up to you. I learned that
the hard way."

"And now it's Alec's turn."

- Logan and Max, "The Berrisford Agenda"

**** ****


pari106@hotmail.com; http://www.geocities.com/pari106/damain.html
Disclaimer: DA is not mine; Rating: PG-13; Code: Alec; AU; spoilers: "TBA"
Summary: Alec returns to the Berrisford estate looking for Rachel. What he finds may
surprise him…and you ;)

WARNINGS: Major-long author's notes ahead :P If you get bored, just scroll down.
But it'd be nice if you at least attempted to read through them :)

A/N: This AU becomes noticeable during Max and Alec's conversation at Crash. The story begins
after Alec has already entered the Berrisford mansion, and will flash back to that point in
chapter one.

Thanks: to my most trustworthy reviewers :) : Donna, Amy, Jane…and everyone else.
You know who you are :) You're the ones who keep me writing, so don't stop sending
me your feedback! I live for it. And I appreciate it more than you know.

A slap on the hand: to those of you who take one look at the story, say "eh, what's one
more review?", and turn back without clicking that nifty little "review" button at the
bottom of the page. Bad reader! BAD! ;) But thanks for giving the story enough of a
chance to browse, anyhow.

And a slap on the hand to myself, because I know I've got a dozen stories up in the air :P
And, in all honesty, most of them won't be coming down (sigh). I know that's horrible.
Which leads me to…

Apologies: to those of you who've been following "Pitter Patter" and "Saving Rachel",
because it's been so long since an update. I am working with "Pitter Patter", but my
muse isn't helping. And since I have a slightly different perception of Alec now that I've
seen the episode that inspired this story, I need to rethink where I'm going with him in
that storyline. As for "Saving Rachel"…please, nobody get violent…but I'm putting that
project on an indefinite pause. From the spoilers I had of TBA, I'd pictured R. Berrisford
*way* different. And the portrayal of him I had in mind greatly effected the course of
events I had planned for the story. Again, a change in my perception of a character
leading to difficulties with my writing. I love that story idea, though, so don't give up
hope on it forever. One day I'd like to take it back up again. But for now, I want to
concentrate on my other works.

So…on with the story already.

A/N: OH! And, just so you know, flashes between scenes and Alec's memories are
followed and preceded by //. Also, this is really kind of my first try at doing the whole
flashback thingy. The ep was big on them so I thought I'd better try it out. I know I
probably messed it up, but let me know what you think. Honestly. So I can fix them if I
need to.

**** ****



"Alec's Turn"
by pari106



Prologue…

"Rachel!"

He realized that if he'd stopped to think about it, he might have found it interesting…
How selective a person's memory can be. He knew, even as burst through Berrisford's
front entrance, his heart pounding almost as loudly as his fists had done, moments before,
on the door, that his memory was being selective. It was being misleading. Those
pleasant moments between him and Rachel…what few they'd had before the
end…hadn't been all there was to remember from his assignment to assassinate her
father. In all truth, those moments were probably the briefest of his experience with the
Berrisfords. The moments that had really drawn out during that time had all been bad.
The moment his superiors ordered him to take out Rachel, as well…the moment he
realized that he didn't want to do that; didn't want to hurt her father, either…the moment
Berrisford's car exploded and whatever he'd wanted or hadn't wanted became a moot
point… But those moments weren't the ones replaying in his head as he raced across the
foyer. He hardly noticed Berrisford's men as they came to meet him. Didn't even look
in their direction; barely glimpsed their guns as they brought them to bear on him. One
punch and the first man went down… Another, and his friend joined him in oblivion.
And another, and another. One by one he picked them off, as he took the staircase, three
steps at a time, to the second level.

"Rachel!" he called again, his voice broken and anxious. So unlike himself in his own
memories.

And, again, he knew those memories weren't complete. He knew he should have taken
that into consideration before bursting in here tonight. Before even having arrived at the
estate. Just as he should have considered the consequences before he'd even gotten
involved with Rachel, so long ago. But his own advice went as unheeded tonight as it
had the night he'd realized he'd let himself fall for the woman he might possibly have to
kill. His advice hadn't been enough to keep him from showing up at Berrisford's estate,
once he'd realized it was still here and still under the same ownership. It hadn't been
enough to stop him from heading for the house, the moment he'd seen that familiar figure
in the upstairs window. Rachel's familiar figure. It hadn't been enough to keep him
from forcing his way through the door, and Berrisford's men beyond, and it wasn't
enough to stop him now.

Alec charged into the first room…and then into the next and then the next, as though in
mindless desperation. In a way…he was. Desperate to find Rachel. That was the only
thought on his mind. It had his heart pumping madly against his ribs, and his lungs
burning in his chest. For two years, he'd thought she was dead. That he'd killed her.
For two years he'd hid from his own reaction to that fact. But he couldn't hide any
longer. Because now he realized he might have been wrong. He'd obviously been wrong
about certain things. He'd thought he'd killed Robert Berrisford, too, but obviously one
of them had survived, or the Berrisford estate would no longer be here, just as it had
been.

Now he realized Rachel might still be alive. He couldn't concentrate on how or why or
what barging in here might do if she were. He only knew that Rachel might still be
alive… And, as if on their own, his legs carried him through the mansion searching for
her. Those memories of the two of them replaying in his head as they did.



//

"You're a funny one."

"I am?"

"Mm-hmm."

A smile. She graced him with one of the most glorious smiles he'd ever seen. She
looked up into his ice-blue eyes. And he had to wonder what it felt like to smile like that,
with genuine emotion. He knew how to smile, of course… But he rarely did so unless it
was during a mission so that he could blend in and look "natural." Manticore had little
reason to encourage their soldiers to smile. In fact, they discouraged it. He wasn't sure if
it was to emphasize the cool, nonobjective mindset Manticore promoted. Or if it was
because it simply unnerved his superiors to see a trained killer smile. Regardless, he
couldn't remember ever having smiled the way Rachel did almost constantly.

He wondered if that was why he couldn't take his eyes off her when she entered a room.

"Most boys would much rather spend a few minutes alone with a girl, then sit in some
smoke-filled room talking about genetics," she teased.

Ah…yeah, that. Okay, he could play along.

He grinned. "But I'm not most boys," he told her. Funny… It always amused him to
make comments like that. Knowing the person he made them to would have no idea how
true the words were.

Rachel smiled again. Such a beautiful, genuine smile…

"I know," she told him.

Funny…suddenly his comment didn't seem so amusing now.

//

"Rachel!"

She was nowhere on the second level.

Nor was anyone else, besides another handful of Berrisford's guards (he must have upped
security sometime in the last two years). But a little hand-to-hand and a few stray
gunshots later, Alec no longer had to worry about them.

He continued onto the third floor.

//

When had it all stopped being amusing? When had it all started to be real? Serious?

Frightening?

Flash-forward to a moment that night in the pool…Was it then? Standing near the edge
of the pool, with water nearly up to his shoulders…Rachel standing there before him.
He'd been with numerous women before, in numerous situations just as wrong as this
one, using one of his numerous aliases. But somehow this situation felt different. He'd
been with women as beautiful as Rachel before, and worlds more experienced; seductive.
But somehow Rachel seemed different. Somehow… Those shy smiles and innocent
eyes had become far more seductive to him than any he could remember. Or even
imagine.

"Don't you like me, Simon?" she asked.

"I like you."

And then a kiss. An embrace… And the promise of much more to come.

"I like you a lot," he breathed against her lips.

Yeah…that was it. That was the moment it all changed. The moment duty turned into
something else. The moment something fun turned into something frightening.

Because that was the moment he realized what he'd just said to her.

And that was the moment that he realized he'd meant it.

//

"Rachel!"

Room after room… Then, suddenly, he spotted the double doors at the end of the hall.
He didn't know why they caught his attention, but they did. Alec froze, staring at them.

"Rachel…" Her name left his lips on a breath. He stood there a full moment… And
headed for that room, bypassing all the others on his way.

That had been Rachel's room. He remembered now, all too clearly.

His speed began to pick up. And then he was no longer inching towards the room, but
running for it.

//

"But I'm not other boys."

"I know."

"I was sent here to kill your father. It was my job… You were my job." Innocent
eyes…suddenly looking somewhat less innocent. Full, pretty lips that had smiled for
him…spoken his name in the throes of passion…quivering with the pain of the blow he'd
just dealt her…

"I like you. I like you a lot."

A smile. She graced him with one of the most glorious smiles he'd ever seen.

"I love you."

"I was sent here to kill your father…"

//

Alec threw open the double doors at the end of the hall and strode through.

//

He'd taken blows from men triple his size and hadn't even flinched. He'd smiled in their
faces and taken them down.

But when Rachel slapped him, his head snapped around fully. There was more power in
her small fist than in any adversary he'd ever encountered. He'd given her that power.
The power to hurt him more than anyone he'd ever known. Only she didn't know it…
Because he'd hurt her, as well. Badly.

Before he'd even realized she was moving, Rachel was brushing past him, her dark hair
swirling around her. He wondered which stung more… His face, where she'd hit him;
his eyes; his throat, clogging with emotion … Or his heart when he saw the anguish on
Rachel's features, the fear in her eyes, and the tears streaking down her lovely face.

"Rachel!"

He reached out to her, tried to grab her, but it was like he was paralyzed from the
abdomen down. Everything was happening so fast… Everything had gone so wrong…
He couldn't move; could barely speak.

He reached out to grab Rachel, but ended up only grabbing her locket instead. She was
so desperate to escape him, she let him have it…the chain tearing as she fled. She was
down the stairs and out the door in moments, as he simply stood there for a moment,
staring down at the family heirloom in his fist.

"Ra…" He couldn't even force her name past his lips. Then he looked up, saw her
heading for the doors…for her father…and he screamed.

"Rachel!"

//

"Rachel!"

At last, he was in the room. But he didn't even notice it. All he saw was the woman at
the opposite end of it, standing with her back to him, staring out the window.

"Rachel!"

Time seemed to freeze for Alec. His heart seemed to freeze in his chest…

Then the woman turned, suddenly, as if startled. Her dark hair swirled around her; her
arms clutched something to her chest as if she were terrified of losing it. She gasped
when she saw him, and her lips parted in surprise.

But they weren't Rachel's lips. That wasn't Rachel.

"Where is she?" he demanded fiercely. After his mad dash up here to find her…all the
build up to this moment, when he should have strode through those doors and seen
Rachel standing before him…

Then, for the first time, Alec noticed the room in which he stood.

He noticed the colors of the walls. The size and shape of the furniture. The toys.

He noticed that the bundle the woman was clutching to her chest…was actually a baby.
A baby boy. Around one to two years old.

Alec had felt as though his lungs had burned before. Now, he lost the ability to breathe
altogether.

The baby had a tiny head full of dark hair…and ice-blue eyes staring out of a cherubic
face.