Spoilers: Through episode 3.1, "Olivia".
Disclaimer: I don't own Fringe or its characters.
Running in Place
A few tears, some choking, and the scientists scramble to help. She's done this before: tearing away the straps that hold her down, taking out all who try to stop her, escaping through unknown halls that lead to freedom if only she can find the way. But this time, there's no help a phone call away. And if her captors catch her, they'll keep trying to break her.
When she hits the edge of the island, with the Statue of Liberty overhead and no place else to go, she barely hesitates. She'll make it across the harbor, and then she'll make it home.
Failure is not an option.
Her hope of escaping, of slipping back to where she belongs, freezes into amber in front of her. Familiar amber, and another piece of the puzzle she may never solve. If she'd been a little bit faster, a little bit better, she would already be home. Now she's just looking for another place to run.
She should be used to her world falling apart just as everything seemed to be falling into place.
Her mind racing, she jams the restroom door closed, trapping Lincoln inside. Lincoln, who's either a damned good actor or believes she's his Olivia. Either way, it suggests his Olivia is gone.
Peter and Walter and Bell left. But not without her. Just not with the right one. They have a traitor in their midst and she has to let them know.
Time to grasp at one last straw.
Her chest aches as she stands in the middle of a memorial park that might have been the site of the most powerful corporation in the world. An airship drifts overhead, just another sign that she's not where she's supposed to be.
All her options are gone. She can't go home.
She needs somewhere to go to ground and regroup, somewhere where she has the time to figure out her next move. And somehow, with that in mind, she knows just the place.
She has less time than she thought.
The name Frank tastes the same on her lips as Peter. And shots like the one that blew up the gas tank only succeed in the movies or when an Olympic-caliber marksman is pulling the trigger. She's losing control of her memories. Again.
Her mind rejected John because he didn't belong. But Olivia, the other Olivia, is her but for a butterfly flapping its wings. Will the similarities anchor the differences, or will the differences be enough to yank her free?
Will she even realize if her past is overwhelmed by memories of a life she never lived?
More and more, as her eyes flick from pictures to knick-knacks to her mother, her memories are paralleled. The differences should be the most jarring, but slip in almost without notice; the similarities might as well have been there all along. Sister who lived, sister who died. Blissfully happy childhood, childhood cut short by pain and loss. Determination and drive and science fiction movies and paint colors, until she doesn't know which memories are hers and which are hers. There's nowhere left to run, not even in her own head.
No matter how risky it might be, survival is ceding this battle to Walternate. But she still has a chance to win the war.
She lets the memories overtake her. She lets the memories rewrite her. This house, this mother, this universe is home.
And all that's left of the Olivia who would know any different is a memory.