Prompt: #7/Survival, “Doesn’t the fight for survival also justify swindle and theft? In self defence, anything goes.”
Character Name: Michael Dawson
Word Count: 430
He can’t look at them as he steers the boat away from the dock and throttles up to pass the four people on their knees at gunpoint mere feet away from him. Walt looks though, and he wishes he wouldn’t. He waits for the inevitable question, for Walt to ask what happened and what his dad did to set them free and why they were leaving the others behind. But Walt merely watches the dock intently until it’s no longer visible before turning to look at his dad. When Michael finally meets his son’s eyes, he sees no questions there. Instead, he sees a quiet acceptance, as if Walt intuitively understands his dad’s belief that this is the only way it could be done. But he also senses that Walt doesn’t believe that’s true.
He looks away from Walt’s unblinking stare, afraid Walt might see the guilt hovering all around him. I did what I had to do. He keeps repeating it to himself. I did what I had to do to protect myself and my son. In my shoes, any of them would have done the same. He repeats these words to himself over and over again, hoping without any real conviction that with repetition will come truthfulness.
He refuses to let his mind take him back to the hatch. He refuses to think of Ana Lucia or Libby. He can’t think about them because he can’t let himself wonder if the ends justified the means. He checks the boat’s bearing and then puts his arm around Walt’s shoulders and hugs the boy tightly to him. He swears the boy’s grown in just the short time he was with the Others. He squeezes Walt just a bit more tightly for a few moments, thinking of all the time he’s missed of his son’s life and vowing that he’s not going to miss any more.
The Others had promised to him that Ben wasn’t going to kill any of his friends. That made him feel better. But he also knew the Others weren’t going to just let them go either. For one wild moment, he considered turning the boat around. The reality of what he’d done was hitting him. Seeing Sawyer’s face had been the worst. He’d betrayed them all, but after everything Sawyer had tried to do for him in helping to save and then find Walt, his betrayal of Sawyer hurt worse than his betrayal of the others.
He wouldn’t think about it. I did what I had to do. I saved my son and we’re going home.