2007-08-28: DF: I Am Jack's Broken Heart



Summary: Immediately following Sylar's attack, Jack is left to pick up the pieces.

Dark Future Date: August 28th, 2009

I Am Jack's Broken Heart

The Oval Office

Jack has been unwillingly unconscious far too many times in recent memory. It started at the meat packing plant during his repeated conflicts with Logan.

Then the attack that took his leg. Being sedated in his cell. And finally, having a murderer talk him into falling asleep.

Yes, it sucks. Thanks for asking.

He comes to groaning, still slumped in his wheelchair, still surrounded by gore and the aftermath of Sylar's attack. Several seconds of shocked silence pass as he reacquaints himself with the facts.

Nathan is dead.

So are a great deal of other people, to be fair. But Nathan… They'd just made up after so many months of hating each other. Jack had finally found his friend and helped to haul him from the cesspool of hate and dispair that was being dominated by Logan. In turn, Nathan freed Jack from the desperate need to seek revenge at all costs.

They did it together.

Forgotten, the camera clatters from Jack's lap as he attempts to lurch to his feet. Unsuccessfully. He slumps forward onto his belly and crawls. Angry, wretched screams tear from his throat. It's not fair. It isn't right. It's a dirty, dirty trick.

Jack shoves the corpses of reporters, aides, and secretaries from his path. He's unable to walk, but by God, he can crawl. When he reaches the wall where Nathan's body has been pinned, he laboriously drags himself into a pseudo-kneel. He's forced to cling to his friend's clothing and his cooling limbs in order to bring himself to a standing position. There is no furniture, no clever wall art for hand holds. There is no decent alternative.

Nathan is dead.

The former President Of The United States has been lanced through the chest and tacked to the wall with his toes dangling from the floor. Sylar's weapon of choice was a twisted spar of wood from a shattered desk. Sturdy and stout, the spar doesn't even wiggle when Jack tugs on it. His face reddens with effort and splinters gouge deep, bloody lines in his palm, but he continues to pull. It doesn't work. Jack is far too weak from his injuries. He screams again, a piercing, pained cry of frustration.

Long moments pass as he collects himself. It's a macabre image to the casual observer. Bodies everywhere. Some with skulls sliced neatly in two. The only thing keeping Jack upright is his grip on Nathan's suit jacket. A final, unintentional embrace. He's eye to eye with his good friend, which makes it impossible to ignore the sliced-off top of Nathan's head.

Jack's eyes have slowly grown wider and wider. He's doing his best to maintain his cool, but it isn't easy. So much has been taken from him since all of this started, and now he's been forced to watch one of the ghastliest slaughters imaginable. So now, panicked and overwhelmed, he begins to speak to Nathan.

"Sorry, boy-o. Have you down in two shakes. You can trust ol' Jackie, he'll take care of ya. Always do, right?"

As he speaks, Jack hooks one arm over Nathan's shoulder and around his back to grip the stake between the body and the wall. He closes his eyes tightly and concentrates, attempting to force his way past the chemical-inspired blockage that has been preventing him from using his power. Finally, something goes right. A tiny, battery operated saw dematerializes from Jack's toolchest and reappears in his hand. When he thumbs the power switch it starts up sluggishly, but it starts. Grimly, he goes to work.

The saw's battery runs out three-quarters of the way through the job.

"No. NO. Shit!" Jack swears and flings the tool aside. He already knows he doesn't have the strength to perform another relocation. He braces himself and pulls Nathan's body away from the wall slightly so he can examine the cut he made in the stake. "Shit," he repeats. "Nathan, I'm sorry. Just… don't move."

Jack grabs Nathan by the shoulders and jerks downward sharply, snapping the spar and partially tearing it free. With neither of them providing any support, the two friends immediately sprawl on the carpet. There is blood. Yes, there most certainly is.

The sight is too much. As has become commonplace over the last several weeks, Jack vomits. He may be a soldier, but he's only human. Still retching dryly, he grabs Nathan by the collar of his suit and slowly, very slowly, he starts to crawl back toward his wheelchair. The journey to get himself back into his seat with Nathan draped across his lap is a laborious one. When he's finished, he sighs out a long breath, wipes away his tears, and wheels them toward the door.

I am Jack's broken heart.

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