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John felt weary as he clambered up the couple of steps to the porch. His legs were lead; his brow creased; his spine stiff and uncomfortable. He'd only stopped for one drink and that had clearly not been enough. It wasn't that he was tired, for his head was chasing itself around with unproductive, dark thoughts at fifty miles an hour.

Fumbling in his pocket, he pulled out the keys and even sliding them home in the lock seemed too much of a task. Around him the London gloom seemed oppressive, and it didn't seem to lift inside the house, all dark rooms and black windows, papers not done, books unread, the products of a life - his life - aimless and artless.

He hid the rings behind some boxes at the bottom shelf of one of many bookcases in his study, safe in the knowledge that Bobby didn't really infringe upon his privacy, didn't really impose, didn't really push - but god, sometimes he wished he did. Sometimes he was just plain tired of hiding things, of sorting through the truths to tell and parsing them, of biting his tongue, of pushing it down, of being - well, not a good guy, but a dishonest guy. Because that what it felt like.

Who did he have to confess to, now that no-one could ever figure out his crimes?

Closing his eyes, he pushed himself back up, and god, he felt old. He'd set fire to two businesses earlier that day, and it had felt good. Enjoyable, even. Pure. He'd kept himself to strict limits, there'd be no casualties, and he'd walked away with a chuckle in his eyes, but...it was the kind of shit he'd pulled when he was a kid. Petty. Angry. Us versus them. And running into Em, and hearing her story; and then running into Jag - it reminded him there were different ways of using power, of loving fire, of being him.

Bobby was probably upstairs, but John didn't go up. It felt too much like forgiveness. Bobby always did, even at Alcatraz. Then, it had just made him angrier. Now, it shamed him. So he rummaged around in the kitchen for the bottle of vodka he stashed away for nights like this, and retired to the couch to drink, and drink, and drink.
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