A/N: This was written for Round 2 of NCIS Last Fiction Writer Standing. The prompt was: Write a character study that starts with the words "I am the one who...". 1000 word limit, anything else is up to you.
I am the one who favors action over reflection. Life is simpler if you don't think too much. Don't think about consequences. Don't think about morality. Killing is easy if you don't look at it too closely. A gun doesn't care who or what it shoots and I have spent my life letting myself be aimed like a weapon. Mindless, proud of my efficiency, accepting no responsibility and feeling no remorse. I have always been good at taking orders.
I am the one who doesn't look at what I've done. If I did I might have seen how my father manipulated me. I might have seen how I let him do so. My past is littered with tragedies of my own making. I don't want to remember that it was my gun that shot Ari, my blindness that led to Michael's death, my acquiescence that spelt doom for those sailors. Their shades keep me company but I stare at the wall of my cell and try not to see. I have always been good at forgetting.
I am the one who is to blame. I know that now; now that there is no way to make it right. No way to raise the dead. No way to heal the hurts I selfishly inflicted. When I thought I had no options it was really that I had no options that I liked. No options that didn't require me to make choices I wanted to avoid. Israel or NCIS, Gibbs or my father, Michael or Tony. I could not ... no, I would not choose. I have always been good at avoidance.
I am the one who never apologizes. I did what I had to do, no need for regret. To be sorry is to be weak. That is what I told myself but it was not true. I did not look behind myself for fear of seeing my mistakes. I did not realize that if you have no hindsight then you are blind. I want to make amends but I wonder; does repentance count if no one witnesses it? I invite the ghosts into my cell and I try to speak but the apology will not come. I don't know how to find the words. I have always been good at silence.
I am the one who does not cry. I do not cry when they question me. I do not cry when they torture me. I do not cry when they rape me. It is no more than I deserve. But back in my cell I wish the tears would come. Not for myself but for everything that could have been. For Michael, for Tony, for the road I didn't travel. I want to offer them my tears of grief. It is the least I can do. I press my hand hard against my side, against the rib I'm sure is broken, and my eyes begin to water. Tears of pain will have to to suffice. I have always been good at pain.
I am the one who said she would never be taken alive, yet here I sit. I did try to die. Suicide by terrorist was my plan. Going down in a hail of bullets would have suited my mood. It would have solved my problems. Even now I could finish it, if I could find the strength. My clothes would make a rope, there are bars to hang from, but here I am. Dying seems both too easy and too hard. It would require a volition I cannot find and a forgiveness I don't deserve. I am surprised. I always thought I would be good at death.
I was wrong.