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02 November 2007 @ 10:44 am
Prison Break Gen Fiction: No Ease Or Absolution  
Title: No Ease Or Absolution
Author: HalfshellVenus
Character: Lincoln (Gen, Angst, Deathfic, AU)
Rating: PG-13 (subject matter)
Summary: After dark, this is where Lincoln's thoughts turn…
Author's Notes: Some Season 3 spoilers, an AU ending stemming from the current known canon. For Round 6 of pbficsurvivor, which required that either Lincoln or Michael die in such a way that the reader would believe it even without a body (my Immunity Award for this story is here!) Also for my prisonbreak100 pairing of Lincoln and Michael for Genfic: this is "Grieve."

x-x-x-x-x

"Your Uncle Michael was the bravest man I've ever known."

This isn't the conversation Lincoln intended to have tonight, here on a rooftop in Sao Paolo. But after dark this is where his thoughts turn, when there is nothing between him and all his memories except the bottom of a bottle. It's a struggle he faces every waking hour.

Lincoln has LJ back now—because the Company got Whistler thanks to Michael, even if Michael didn't make it more than a hundred yards beyond the compound before bullet wounds claimed him. Lincoln had sent the truck along to Sofia before going back for Michael, but by the time he made it to the red-washed sand there was no sign of Michael except for drag-marks to the tire tracks of whatever had taken him away.

Lincoln never even got to say goodbye…

"I want to see him," he'd told the guards at the prison, and he hadn't meant that he wanted to but that he'd needed to. After everything Michael had done for him, he couldn't give up so easily.

"Already gone," the guards had answered, but Lincoln had already known that.

"Si. Muerto," he'd whispered hoarsely.

"No— gone," the guards had insisted, but what had that meant? Already buried? Taken by the Embassy? Something else?

"Consulado?"

"No," the tallest one had said, "Señora."

Then Lincoln had finally understood. That fucking bitch.

Michael had become unwanted evidence of The Company, of its interference. Without a body to rally round, it would be hard to prove he'd had anything to do with SONA or Whistler or the brutality of a conspiracy that had worked behind the scenes of the United States' highest office.

Susan, or whoever she was, had shown Lincoln the evidence when she'd delivered LJ to him at last. The photographs had been clear: Michael's tattoos riddled with bullet holes, the telltale birthmark on the lower left side still visible on skin that was an impossible bluish-gray. It was all Lincoln could manage, not to have thrown up on the spot.

He still sees those images, the stark finality of his brother's sacrifice, months later nearly every time he closes his eyes. He never sleeps if he can help it.

"But I don't understand why he did it," LJ says. "Why did he ever think it would work?"

"Because it did," Lincoln answers fiercely. "Both times—when no-one but Michael would've had the guts to even try it in the first place."

Because Michael had never really believed that things were impossible, not if you could find an angle or create one of your own, not if you simply refused to give up.

Lincoln had tried to believe all that once—that if he prayed hard enough Dad would come back home, or his Mom would get better, or so many years later that somehow justice would prevail.

In the end, all he came to believe in was Michael. No matter how hopeless things sometimes looked, that faith was never for a moment misplaced.

Lincoln doesn't have that kind of faith in himself—or any reason to. He can't stop thinking about everything Michael did to save him even though he never deserved it and will never be the kind of man who does.

If it weren't for LJ, Lincoln would have pulled the trigger on himself already just to be rid of this misery, to get out from under the weight of a debt he can't possibly ever repay. Instead, he goes through the motions of survival. He took LJ and ran, not for home but for anonymity. He works construction, everything under the table, just keeping a roof over their heads and avoiding any reason for someone to come looking either to help them or destroy them. He's had enough of both.

At night or when the world stops rushing past, memories haunt him. Michael as a boy, so smart and innocent, so very serious. Michael dragging his heels to keep from being taken away to his first foster home when Lincoln had to stay behind. Michael watching him in the courtroom, visiting him in prison… and later, standing on the wrong side of the bars.

The day Lincoln was nearly executed, Michael was there. He kept Lincoln company at the end, comforting and distracting him and somehow managing to keep from crying even though the effort must have been enough to choke him.

Mostly, Lincoln remembers Michael at SONA, how scared and desperate he looked when he tried to tell Lincoln that the place was a death sentence. After that, the images of tattoos and bullet holes take over until Lincoln can't blot them out without the aid of enough whiskey to lay him flat until morning comes.

He wishes he had the wherewithal and the will to do something about The Company—for what they did to his family, and most especially for what they did to Michael. He wishes he could bring about the justice Michael deserves.

But Lincoln will never be that strong or brave, he will never work that kind of miracle, he knows it.

That was always Michael instead.



-------- fin --------



 
 
 
The Good, The Bad and The Lana: bunnies pair of vampire bunniesthelana on November 2nd, 2007 07:11 pm (UTC)
Whaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa.

You know, when I started reading I was gonna comment with all the little things that popped in my head, those annoying things of like stuff I wanted to see.

Then the next few sentences came and all those thoughts lost relevance and I was just gonna comment how perfect and in character it was.

And then for a short while I was instead gonna talk about the irony that I just read mooyoo's story where Lincoln dies and it's just Michael and LJ and now I read yours where Michael dies and it's just Lincoln and LJ, only difference being that you didn't write yours willingly...

And then I came to the end and really the only thing I can say is:

Whaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa

(you might be glad to hear though that this is I think your first story that actually made me cry. It *might* be the first fanfiction story alltogether, but don't quote me on that, though it is definitely the only I can think of)

You make me want to get a PB icon again.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: Lincoln (pensive)halfshellvenus on November 2nd, 2007 07:18 pm (UTC)
I think the "Whaaaaaa" is the perfect response, really. This story is all about loss, and how you can't get back the things that matter once they're gone-- not Michael, not Michael's innocence, not the world you used to want to still be in.

The secondary "grieve" prompt really drove the mood of this story, that and how certain deaths have been so mismanaged by the show. This was intended to have more of the feeling of grief and eulogy than shock and aborted resolution.

You make me want to get a PB icon again.
*sniff* One of the kindest things you've ever said. ♥
The Good, The Bad and The Lana: smallville lex lana sleepthelana on November 2nd, 2007 07:35 pm (UTC)
*sniff* One of the kindest things you've ever said. ♥

If you want I'll let you pick one for me.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: PB Final Hughalfshellvenus on November 2nd, 2007 07:56 pm (UTC)
I've always liked the "bloody riot face-touching" one, because it has the brotherlove, the violence, and the grit all in one photo-- it symbolizes the parts of the series I like really well.

I couldn't find a good version of it, though I went peeking through userpics of people on my f-list, and got distracted by the hilarity in jules1013's set (including what I believe is Walt Whitman labeled as "My lover") and pamalax's first one, which is a moving icon of "Dead. Dead. Dead Crazy" and really cracked me up.

Want me to keep looking? I never had that one as one of my icons, but maybe I should have!
The Good, The Bad and The Lana: smilie priyankathelana on November 2nd, 2007 08:03 pm (UTC)
Which one do you mean?

Basically, I give you the right to force one icon of your choosing on me, which I promise to use for at least three months. However, you don't have to make use of that right and you can invoke it at a time of your choosing (for example in case you ever stumble across one that pings you).

How about that? :D
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: PB Final Hughalfshellvenus on November 2nd, 2007 08:07 pm (UTC)
How about that? :D
Works for me! Now I'll go peek at mooyoo's icons just in case. And you really should check out that pamalax one. ;)
The Good, The Bad and The Lana: smilie priyankathelana on November 2nd, 2007 08:13 pm (UTC)
Whatever you order :)
PamalaXpamalax on November 3rd, 2007 01:49 am (UTC)
You mean this one :o)

Even thought you know already I wanted to pop by and tell you this was a gorgeous fic. Nothing I didn't love about it from start to finish. :o)

So much amazing fan fic from this one game is just the greatest thing since sliced bread.

Can't wait to see your next offering.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: PB Final Hughalfshellvenus on November 3rd, 2007 02:48 am (UTC)
OH yes, that was the one! Bwah! I hadn't seen it before, and then there was toughAbruzzi with "DEAD" stamped on him and I was cracking up before the punchline even came around.

I'm so glad you liked this story, and I appreciate you mentioning it a second time! Virtually all of the comments I get on these are on the comm posting-- once the stories get onto my journal they are DOA, which is terribly sad.

The variety and quality of the stories for this contest have been fantastic, and the directed challenges have actually helped bring the writing out well, at least for me-- especially considering that I thought my ability to write PB was nearly dead late last spring. It's been wonderful to find that it isn't dead after all. ♥

The Good, The Bad and The Lana: still watchingthelana on November 3rd, 2007 05:00 pm (UTC)
How about this? I made a variation of it, so they don't look exactly the same :)
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: PB Final Hughalfshellvenus on November 3rd, 2007 06:41 pm (UTC)
Whoops-- I launched a confusion sequence without meaning to.

No, I just thought you should peek at it because it was funny!

This picture here is close to the one I mean, except that there are better ones where Michael is actually looking at Lincoln. Overall, I wish the colors/resolution in all these "riot hugs" weren't so grainy:


The Good, The Bad and The Lana: still watchingthelana on November 3rd, 2007 08:58 pm (UTC)
Ooops. Okay. I'll try to find if anybody has made any from that episode :)
The Good, The Bad and The Lana: brothers no second chancethelana on November 4th, 2007 07:59 am (UTC)
*premiering it for your pleasure*
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: PB Final Hughalfshellvenus on November 4th, 2007 08:46 am (UTC)
Wow. That turned out very nicely! *claps*

And you even get to credit yourself for it. :D
The Good, The Bad and The Lanathelana on November 4th, 2007 08:54 am (UTC)
Actually rayesdancer from my flist made it for me :)

I'm no good with icons at all :)
PamalaX: AlexYEAHpamalax on November 3rd, 2007 07:23 pm (UTC)
I like that a lot too. :o)

Nice to see you around more these days thelana. You were missed in season two!
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: PB Final Hughalfshellvenus on November 3rd, 2007 08:05 pm (UTC)
You were missed in season two!
A.Men. *cries at the memory of the thelana-less S2*
The Good, The Bad and The Lana: smilie priyankathelana on November 3rd, 2007 10:21 pm (UTC)
Season 2, there's no level 3 season 2 :p
crowleyangel on November 6th, 2007 03:25 am (UTC)
:D I love Michael/Lincoln. I wish there were more. Good job.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: PB Final Hughalfshellvenus on November 7th, 2007 07:33 am (UTC)
At least I'm getting back into the swing of it, Gen as well as slash! The pbficsurvivor challenges have been great for getting me back into writing for this show (that and Season 3 not being like Season 2). :D
mooyoo: M/L - Never let me gomooyoo on November 7th, 2007 05:02 am (UTC)
I have some a lot of PB fic to catch up on. I miss the gen fic, especially yours.

Mostly, Lincoln remembers Michael at SONA, how scared and desperate he looked when he tried to tell Lincoln that the place was a death sentence. After that, the images of tattoos and bullet holes take over until Lincoln can't blot them out without the aid of enough whiskey to lay him flat until morning comes.

Ouch. This part kills me, and probably the most telling part of the fic, for both Michael and Lincoln. I'm generally not a big fan of deathfics, and when it comes to PB I find that I can read or write Lincoln dying but not so much Michael, for this reason exactly - we've seen Lincoln come to terms with his possible death and make peace with it a few times throughout the series, but Michael has pretty much always believed that they would make it to freedom, even when things have come very close. And to see him so afraid - and then have him not make it after all - is heartbreaking.

Even more so is that these are the last memories Lincoln has of him.

And now I have to go find some "Michael, Linc, and LJ live happily ever after on a beach somewhere together" fic...
The Good, The Bad and The Lana: brothers no second chancethelana on November 9th, 2007 04:55 pm (UTC)
Glad that you decided to check it out :)

BTW, there's a new Prison Break preview clip on fox.com that might interest you. It's about something we've been talking about.