Based on an old prompt I dug up. An alternative ending to season two, where Dexter listens to Doakes and turns himself in. This is him turning himself in, and each additional chapter will be visitors.
The salty wind blows in my face and through my hair. I inhale deeply, enjoying the smell for the last time. I vaguely wonder what will become of my boat. The thought leaves as soon as it enters. There are bigger questions to answer.
I look at Rita and the kids. Her face is beautiful, soft and gentle. She has a small smile as she talks to Astor. Her eyes, bright and vibrant, ready to love again. My heart flutters in the closest thing to guilt I will ever feel. Take two in her love life has failed. How many times can a person be broken before they simply become beyond repair? Hopefully more than two.
I move to Astor. Her young face robbed of innocence that should rightfully be there. Her father has scarred her. I'm about to do the same. I look straight ahead. It can't be helped now. I had set her up from the very moment I took her mother to dinner. A clean and quick break is the best thing now.
I look to Cody. He's starring out into the vast sea, a sense of quiet mystery on his face. Will he remember? Will he even understand? Or will take it personally that every father figure he ever has tends to go to jail and die? Or will I fade into a blur, forgotten?
I vaguely hope that Rita can find someone else. Hopefully she'll get it right the next time. No druggies, no sociopaths, just a good man. She deserves that after all she has been through.
Miami is fast approaching, and I long to slow my boat, if only to enjoy the company of Rita and the kids for a little bit longer. But my hand holds firm, the boat continues to move at a steady rate. The last thing I want to do is get nostalgic and scare Rita.
I breath in the fresh air again and the sense of ending looming over me engulfs me just a little bit more.
Doakes looks resigned, like he has given up hope. I wonder what is going through his head. Is he wondering how he got here? Does he regret his choice to follow the rabbit into it's hole?
I pull up a wooden chair and join him in reflection. I have to wonder, why does one live? For fun? To help others? Or does one live only for fear of death? Where do I fit in? I don't have fun. The best thing I ever get to do is kill others. Sure, I help the community as a whole when I kill, but I don't kill to help others. I don't live to help others. Fear of death? I've never felt it. Death is death, an unavoidable end that I've become very familiar with.
And now, at the dawn of my end, I can't help but feel pleased. Like the last page in a great book, or the perfect closure in a movie. And end to the hassle, the constant pressure and never ending lies. I've seen so many people stare into my face and see death. I've watched all sorts of reactions. Denial, anger, fear, bargaining. Whatever it may be, I've seen how powerful it is. Like a raging storm brewing inside a person's very soul, right before the curtains close. The dramatic last scene.
But me? It appears I don't fit into that group either. I'm calm, accepting, and perhaps even a little bit excited. I breath deeply yet again, smelling the musty wood and the zing of the swamp outside.
"I'll tell you what James", I start. "Can I call you James?", I ask. I wouldn't want this conversation to get off on the wrong foot.
"Knock yourself out", he grumbles, looking off to the side. He still thinks he is going to die.
"I'm toying with an idea...", I start, unsure of how to say this. How do you convey thoughts and ideas when the other person is so unlike yourself? I want to him understand exactly where I am coming from.
"I've been under federal investigation for over two months...", I continue, trying to express how hopelessly trapped I am. He doesn't seem to care, it's old news. "My trophies were stolen", I state with no real anger. It did work to get his attention, if only an askance glance.
"Sorry", he mutters. He probably doesn't mean it, but it's nice to hear. It adds a sense of chivalry to our oh-so uncivil situation.
"The Code I live by has been shattered...", I briefly wonder if he can relate to that. Do normal people have codes too? Or am I just a rambling mad man? "I have a coworker in a cage...", I continue, trying desperately to get his attention, to make him realize just how fucked up things are right now. "Things aren't going so well."
"No shit. I can see that", he grumbles again, still not caring. It frustrates me, how little he cares. I decide to cut to the point.
"You told me. 'Take responsibility for what I am'...You were right", I say. Finally he pays attention. His eyes focus in on me. He gets it. This isn't the ramblings of a mad man, or at least not just that. "Harry killed the wrong person", I let it out while he is paying attention. The weight that I have been caring around since I first learned of my father's true death is partially lifted.
"Morgan...You aren't thinking about-", he starts, but I stop him, already knowing what he is thinking.
"Killing myself? No, that's pathetic...", I correct him. "But I can't live in this house of cards anymore, waiting for it all to fall down. I need to do something", I continue, trying my best to explain it so that an outsider can understand. "I'm thinking about turning myself in", I utter the damning words. Full realization hits him.
"That's a good call. That's a tough call, but a good call", he says, turning to face me directly. I can see it in his eyes, so familiar. It's the look of someone, convinced they are about to die, grasping at a last chance to live. Like an animal, he's internally frenzied and panicked, but he sees a way out, and he's clawing at it, desperate for life.
I sigh, enjoying the feeling of my own kind of propriety that washes over me. It seems only right to sacrifice myself for Doakes. He fears death, I don't. I'm even embracing it.
"I need the fucking relief", I say. How I long for it...I've never realized just how much of a strain living is on me. How hard I work, juggling everything. And for what? To live a life I can't enjoy, for the sake of a man who regretted my very existence?
"Yeah, you can't keep running. That's for pussies. You are just going to end up in exactly the same situation...", he coaxes me further into death's calming embrace. It's purely selfish, I can still see the fear, mingling with hope, in his eyes. He wants to live, and in order to secure that, he wants me dead. I can't hold it against him though, it's only natural.
"Prison. I could finally get some sleep...", I wonder if it is as bad as they say. I'll be put on Death Row, which I hear isn't that bad. Aside from the dying part, that is. "In the long run it would be easier on Deb. Rita. Better than watching me get dragged down like an animal, which, let's face it, will happen someday", I continue to muse. It's better for everyone this way.
"We'll do it together. I'll go with you. Come on, let's go", he says, standing. The animal is pouncing on it's chance, wanting to take it before it disappears into the wind. I won't rob him of it, not this time.
I pull the key out of my pocket, and I can hear his breath hitch. I wonder vaguely if he'll try to attack, uncertain of my sincerity.
"I'm glad it's you to doing this", I mutter before I release him. "I'd hate for me to get caught on some pure accident", it's always been a fear of mine. To die in some meaningless, trivial way. No point or purpose, with all that is and was Dexter Morgan being washed away instantly.
I open the door for him and within that brief moment, the dynamics change. It is no longer capturer and captive. The fear that motivated him so strongly prior is gone. He stares, looking at me for the first real time. I reach into my bag, and I can see him tense. But he doesn't move. He knows that I'm not a threat.
I pull out a pair of gleaming handcuffs and hold them out to him. "Want to do the honors?", I gently kid, welcoming him. He carefully reaches out and takes him. I smile and turn around, putting my hands behind my back. "This must be you're easiest arrest ever", I joke. It's finally over. Oddly enough, my impending doom has put me in a good mood. I'm finally free. I can only smile at the gentle click of the handcuffs. Finally. This feels long over-due.
"You have a morbid sense of humor Morgan", he says in his stoic voice. But there's a tremble deep inside. After years of facing the worst of humanity, watching bad guy after bad guy go down fighting, this must be new to him. Perhaps even touching. This'll be the last time anyone will ever think my actions are noble.
"But deep down, I'm not as bad as you thought", I didn't kill him. I didn't even harm him. Here I am, the deadly Bay Harbor Butcher, going in peacefully. The silence stretches on.
"No, you're not", he says, escorting me out of the cabin.
He stops half way to my car, staring at me. I take the moment to enjoy to the Everglades at night. Moonlight breaks the canopy in splotches and patches, moving with the wind. It's so quiet without the cars or angry cries of the city, but still so loud. The bugs all have their own sounds, all playing at the same time. It's peaceful.
"You're a good man Dexter", a silent voices breaks the choir of the marshes. I turn and look at Doakes. A good man? I still think I'm not what most would consider human, but I like to think I'm a good monster. But his words still touch me. This is what Harry would have wanted.
I chuckle and walk closer to my car. He doesn't seem to care about me moving out of arm's length. It's nice, the trust. This is much better than hiding and running for months, ending with a barrage of police men tackling me and throwing me in a squad car.
It's more tranquil this way.
All eyes are on us. For the first time in my entire life, I hold my head up, proud. I take dignified steps, and smile and nod to all my co-workers. They look aghast, confused. Wide-eyed faces are everywhere. Doakes' hand is on my back, guiding me. It's a formality, he knows I won't run.
I look at Masuka. He is still, only his eyes moving to follow us. He looks stupefied, as though I had just done something random and crazy, rather than be hauled in by the alleged Bay Harbor Butcher in handcuffs. I grin at him and nod.
Hello Vince Masuka, meet Dexter Morgan.
Angel is there too, looking just as baffled at Masuka, but wanting to do something. He knows one of us is the Bay Harbor Butcher, just not which one. He looks to those around him, as if waiting for a cue on who to tackle to the ground.
LaGuerta has tears in her eyes. Her friend is coming home, an innocent man. I'm glad. I'd feel remorseful if I had to take Doakes from her. No, Doakes will live, free and innocent.
And then I see her. Deb. Standing in the doorway of the conference room, a few feet behind Lundy. She only looks confused, as though nothing is wrong, just off. I have to feel sorry for her, just when she started getting over her fiancée being a serial killer, she finds out her brother is one too. I sigh and look straight ahead. It's better in the long run.
So now here we are. I'm standing dead center in a circle. Everyone crowds around me, fighting to be within three yards of me, lest they don't get to watch to show. No one dares to move any closer though. One of us have killed a whole lot of people, and they know it.
"The Bay Harbor Butcher", Doakes says stoically from behind me. He wants to clear his name, it's understandable. I stand up straight, as though it's something to be proud of, like an entertainer that has just been introduced. I admit, I am a little bit proud of my work.
Whispers begin to emanate, surrounding me in the bliss of honest truth. They swarm and mesh together, preventing any one person from being heard. I can take a guess at what they are saying though.
I keep my eyes straight ahead, carefully avoiding the conference room.
"Dexter?", LaGuerta hisses in a hushed whisper. The room falls silent suddenly, the buzzing coming to an abrupt end.
The spotlight shines on me. It's time for Dexter Morgan to do his act. His first real one.
"Yep", I chirp happily. I'm giddy at being able to show my true self. My mind screams at me how off that is, how I shouldn't be chirping or cheery. But I have to ask myself, why the hell not? That was the point of turning myself in, to be free. No more acting.
The room bursts out in more chatter, louder this time. A few people dive for phones. Some talk to amongst themselves, but most throw questions at me. The three yard barrier that so persistently separated the masses with the Bay Harbor Butches is crushed as the crowd moves further towards me. People push closer to me, until I can see wide and vibrant eyes just inches from my own. The human race, with emotions rushing through them, all displayed in their eyes. I wonder what they see in my eyes? Are they able to notice how dead and lifeless they are, now that it has been pointed out to them.
Doakes' hand moves me, and I follow it, letting it take me back the way we came. The crowds follows, still seeming to want to get closer and closer. I wonder if I started to yell and cuss, would I be able to part them like the Red Sea?
I'm thrown into the interrogation room, cut off from my adoring fans. It's just me and Doakes again, although I'm sure a huge crowd has formed around the monitors recording this room.
"Anything you want before I get hard-ass on you?", Doakes asks in his mean-cop voice. It brings back memories of when he would causally tell me I'm creepy while I hand him my blood splatter report.
"No, I'm good", I reply, as though he just offered me something to drink. But he didn't. That was his last 'thank you', and this was my 'your welcome'. He has to return to being a cop, and I need to be a caught sociopath now. Our roles are pulling us apart as our brief friendship comes to an end.
I'm comforted by the thought that our respect for one another will never meet the same fate.