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Characters: Charlie, Sawyer
Rating: PG (a bit of language)
Note: Inspired by a post on the Sawyer thread at TWoP -- what if Sawyer took Claire’s diary and then actually gave it back to Charlie of his own free will, instead of simply hoarding as usual?


Unlike the other countless things Sawyer had taken, this one preyed on his mind. Why had he taken her diary, anyway? He was feeling uncharacteristically guilty and it was bugging him. Now Kate’s diary, that would be a hoot to read.

“Dear Diary, that Sawyer is such an ass and yet he intrigues me so. Note to self: Must tackle him again at earliest opportunity.”

Nah, her diary would be full of pinings about the great, sainted Dr. Jack. Or, hell, maybe even Sayid, although it was looking like Abdul had a new girlfriend in that blonde Barbie. Sawyer chuckled to see how steamed it made her “brother.” If those two weren’t humping on the side, he’d be mighty surprised.

But he’d taken Claire’s diary with the same impulse that made him take the wallet off that rotting body still strapped into his seat at the bottom of that lake. He was just using the instincts God had given him to look out for No. 1. Especially if the owner was now part of the heavenly choir, like the pregnant girl surely was.

Yeah, she wouldn’t miss her diary because there was about as much of chance of her coming back as a rescue ship suddenly appearing on the horizon. No one was talking about her, though, which was weird. Sawyer saw Charlie moping on the beach, moodily staring out to sea. Everyone was giving him a wide berth. In his case, misery wasn’t company, Sawyer guessed.

It seemed that Claire’s disappearance was more awkward than sad. Maybe everyone felt guilty that they hadn’t done more to protect her. Sawyer had only his gut to go on because it’s not like anyone was confiding in him. No one had even told him when she’d gone missing. He had to learn it from some bratty kid. Did anyone come ask him to help in the search? No, Sawyer wasn’t good for anything like that. He just took stuff. He was just scum, just a lowdown vulture, a scavenging rat.

So he saw her diary and he took it. Let them come looking for it or not. But now that he had, he wished he’d never taken it. He’d been tempted to read it, but he kept seeing that look on her face when he’d handed over the wallets for the memorial service. She’d just said “Thank you.” No lecture, no “How could you take these?” Just a simple thank you and a smile that made him feel she could see right through him.

He hadn’t felt guilty about taking anything else. Hell, he was doing them all a service, really, wasn’t he? Mad at himself and at all of them, he grabbed the diary and started reading. Because that’s the kind of guy he was. The kind who would rape a dead girl’s private thoughts.

He was surprised to find an entry about himself. “Sawyer’s not as bad as he wants everyone to think,” she’d written. “Why does he try so hard to be hated? It’s like he’s afraid of anyone seeing anything good in him.”

“Fuckin’ armchair psychologist,” Sawyer grunted. Maybe that’s why he’d stayed away from her. He couldn’t fool her, couldn’t play the game with her. She’d just look at him with those enormous blue eyes and he felt like a kid with his hand in the cookie jar.

As he kept reading, he had the oddest feeling that she was sitting behind him. He even looked up, but there was no one there. Damn spooky island, he muttered, shrugging off the feeling of being watched.

“I feel safe with Charlie,” he read. Well, that hack musician was sure devoted to her. Like a pathetic lapdog, really, the way he’d followed her around, making moony eyes at her. Now he sat like a dog whose owner is never coming back but still goes to the door, barking expectantly, then returns to lay with its head between its paws.

Sawyer sighed. He knew what he was going to have to do and he didn’t like it one bit. His goddamn conscience was kicking in, as much as he hated to admit he had one. Maybe he could just slip the diary into Charlie’s things, a bit of reverse thieving.

He stood up, tucking the diary into his back pocket. Charlie’s things were at the caves and if he had any luck, no one would be there. Sawyer grabbed a bottle of water as his excuse to go to the caves and strode off. When he got there, he was sorry to see that that fat guy was hanging out with the kid. No chance of sneaking the thing back.

The diary was burning a hole in his pocket. He had to get rid of the thing now. Well, he knew where to find Charlie. He had to do it the hard way. He walked over to that isolated spot on the beach the limey had claimed for himself. Charlie looked up at him suspiciously when he saw him approaching.

“What do you want?” he asked sullenly. His eyes were red and he made no attempt to hide that he’d been crying.

“Got something you might want,” Sawyer said. He held up the diary. “I ain’t got no use for this.” He tossed it to the startled kid, who caught it awkwardly.

“It’s Claire’s diary,” Charlie said, wonderingly as he thumbed through it. His eyes narrowed. “Why did you take it? Did you read it?”

“Guilty as charged,” Sawyer admitted, not blinking at the waves of hostility coming off the pint-size Brit. “Just thought you’d want to know she had some nice things to say about you.”

“How dare you?” Charlie said, standing up. He was shaking with rage. “She hasn’t been gone a week and you’re pawing through her things? That’s a new low even for you!”

Sawyer shrugged. “Not trying to earn any brownie points, bub.” He turned to go, but Charlie unexpectedly flung himself at Sawyer’s middle, knocking him down. Charlie fell on top of him, and started lashing out with his fists. He connected with Sawyer’s wounded upper arm and Sawyer let out a shout of pain.

Charlie grinned evilly and punched him again, square on the bandage. Sawyer responded with a blow that sent Charlie flying. They sat up and regarded each other with hostility.

“Read it, don’t read it,” Sawyer said, getting up and dusting the dirt off of him. “Burn it for all I care.” He paused. He wanted to say he missed her too, that he had spent time worrying about her, wondering if she was alive, until he’d decided she had to be dead, but what was the point? Only Charlie had a right to miss her or mourn for her, that’s the way things stood.

Charlie continued glaring at him as he walked away. “Well, I did it,” Sawyer sighed to Claire. “Are you gonna leave me alone now?”

Comments

( 35 comments — Leave a comment )
sayid_fan
Jan. 21st, 2005 03:33 am (UTC)
It was short and it sucked. Where's the plot in the story?
halfdutch
Jan. 21st, 2005 05:29 am (UTC)
Hi, sorry it wasn't to your taste. It was written as something I wish had happened on the show instead of the same old Sawyer hoarding stuff we always get. Also I'm in the middle of a super-long fic so I thought I'd try my hand at something short for a change.
(no subject) - sapphirewoman - Jan. 21st, 2005 07:06 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - halfdutch - Jan. 21st, 2005 07:16 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - acidic_flower - Jan. 22nd, 2005 06:04 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - acidic_flower - Jan. 22nd, 2005 06:07 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - sapphirewoman - Jan. 28th, 2005 04:47 am (UTC) - Expand
guineverekay
Jan. 21st, 2005 03:53 am (UTC)
Yay! Character development for Sawyer....I love it in fic, since we never see any lately in the show.
halfdutch
Jan. 21st, 2005 05:30 am (UTC)
Thanks! I feel the show is really shortchanging him lately. I'm not sure I really did him justice either, but at least I'm trying!
natalexx
Jan. 21st, 2005 05:35 am (UTC)
It's always nice to come online and see people developing Sawyer characterization when he's been shortchanged on the show. Fandom yey and all that. *g* I like this. Nicely re-worked from what we saw in the episode.

And I especially like this:

Mad at himself and at all of them, he grabbed the diary and started reading. Because that’s the kind of guy he was. The kind who would rape a dead girl’s private thoughts.

Because it rings true for me, as Sawyer's headspace. I love 3D!Sawyer. Thanks for sharing!
halfdutch
Jan. 21st, 2005 06:21 am (UTC)
Thanks so much! Always happy to share the Sawyer love.
(Anonymous)
Jan. 21st, 2005 06:47 am (UTC)
Cool! I thought I was the only one who noticed that Claire was the only one who was nice to Sawyer -- and thus, not surprisingly, vice versa. I think they need to spend more time together.
halfdutch
Jan. 21st, 2005 07:11 am (UTC)
Thanks! I hadn't thought about that but now that she's back maybe we'll finally get some Sawyer-Claire interaction. If not on the show, at least there's the Sawyer-Claire community. Check it out: http://www.livejournal.com/community/sawyer_claire/
sapphirewoman
Jan. 21st, 2005 07:01 am (UTC)
I liked your explanation of Sawyer's temptation to steal things. It makes sense, and it certainly fits in with his character. I also enjoyed the interaction between Charlie and Sawyer. I wish there was more of that on the show!
halfdutch
Jan. 21st, 2005 07:12 am (UTC)
Thanks! I agree, they need to mix it up more on the show and not just in the same "give me that thing you stole, Sawyer" way. If I were writing the show, Sawyer wouldn't have taken the diary in the first place, but what are you gonna do?
eponine119
Jan. 21st, 2005 07:04 am (UTC)
I really liked the exploration of Sawyer's character in your story here. And your efforts to explain why he would have taken the diary, which weren't terribly clear on the show beyond what you pointed out is their default "if it's missing, Sawyer must have it" position. Nice work.
halfdutch
Jan. 21st, 2005 07:15 am (UTC)
Thank you! That's why I love fandom: It lets us fill in the blanks from the show that bug us! I really hope this "if it's missing, Sawyer must have it" crap ends soon. We're all getting very tired of it!
malisita
Jan. 21st, 2005 02:23 pm (UTC)
Nicely done! I'm glad there's someone else out there who wondered *why* Sawyer took the diary and I think you handled this "what if?" beautifully. Your characterization was dead-on. I wrote a similar story after the episode but, since I can't help myself, totally made it all about Sayid. ;-). One of these days I'm going to write Sawyer fic that has absolutely nothing to do with Sayid whatsoever. *cough*yeahright*cough*.

Wait, this is feedback. I shouldn't be talking about myself.

This line, especially, No, Sawyer wasn’t good for anything like that. He just took stuff. He was just scum, just a lowdown vulture, a scavenging rat. encapsulates how I think Sawyer sees himself, how he wants others to see him, because he's constantly punishing himself for Becoming Mr. Sawyer.

This was a nice gem to find amongst the "Lost" fic communities!
halfdutch
Jan. 21st, 2005 06:46 pm (UTC)
Thank YOU! Ha! I know how it is. Every fic I write ends up being about Sawyer, even if he starts off as a minor character. That boy just doesn't like to stay in the background. If Sayid is always tagging along, that's OK by me.

I went ahead and read some of your Sawyer stories. Good stuff. The "Hell Hath No Fury" one really cracked me up.
(no subject) - malisita - Jan. 21st, 2005 06:53 pm (UTC) - Expand
thefragile7393
Jan. 21st, 2005 07:17 pm (UTC)
I liked it. My only complaint is that I wish you had it to where he hadn't read it. But hey, its your story, not mine :-)

I too get sick of them thinking that all Sawyer is about is being a jerk....characters are complex and you can't take everything for face-value (I think the same way of Kate...both of these characters get some of the biggest bashing but people don't stop and think there's more beyond whats on the screen, hence the flashbacks).

This even seemed like it would be great in an episode...it was really well-written. Maybe one of the writers will read it ;-)
halfdutch
Jan. 21st, 2005 08:46 pm (UTC)
Thanks for the kind words! The post over at TWoP that inspired me to write this suggested that Sawyer (and not Charlie) be the one struggling with whether to read the diary or not. I did like that idea because having Charlie do it in such a comical fashion kind of undermined all his Claire angst.

If it were up to me, Sawyer wouldn't be stealing the diary or reading it at all but I did want to start from where the show had, even if though I don't really agree with it.

I hope the writers at least get wind that we're fed up with one-note Sawyer (and other one-note characterizations). I do think they can do better.
(no subject) - thefragile7393 - Jan. 24th, 2005 03:44 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - halfdutch - Jan. 24th, 2005 06:10 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - thefragile7393 - Jan. 25th, 2005 03:40 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - halfdutch - Jan. 25th, 2005 04:03 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - thefragile7393 - Jan. 25th, 2005 04:33 pm (UTC) - Expand
acidic_flower
Jan. 22nd, 2005 06:03 am (UTC)
Great fanfic! I loved the way you characterized Sawyer...you've got it down to perfection, and with a character as complex as his, that's quite the acomplishment!!!

Oh, and don't listen to what Sayid Fan said...it's SO not true~!
halfdutch
Jan. 22nd, 2005 07:47 am (UTC)
Thank you! Sawyer's not just one of my favorite characters on the show, he's one of my favorite characters of all time. Love the guy! I'm so pleased you think I have him down! It just kills me when they mishandle him on the show. (Grrr.)

Thanks for coming to my defense over the mean review. It was my first negative feedback but it's been more than outbalanced by all the other sweet things the rest of you have said, so thanks, you guys! Certainly made my week!
nysha63
Jan. 23rd, 2005 06:48 am (UTC)
Great story, I love how you've given Sawyer motive to steal the diary and morals to give it back.
halfdutch
Jan. 23rd, 2005 07:47 am (UTC)
Thanks! Someone has to stand up for Sawyer, dammit! ;-D
belleimani
Jan. 29th, 2005 09:16 am (UTC)
Nicely done, I could see this happening and good character development.
halfdutch
Jan. 29th, 2005 07:17 pm (UTC)
Thanks! This one was written in protest of some shameful Sawyer neglect, but hopefully that will be a thing of the past soon! But I know us fic writers will always be glad to jump in whenever there's a shortage in quality or quantity of Sawyer screentime. And even if there's not ... ;->

(no subject) - belleimani - Jan. 30th, 2005 06:06 am (UTC) - Expand
(Deleted comment)
halfdutch
May. 9th, 2007 11:47 pm (UTC)
Aww, thank you! :) It's always wonderful to get love for an older fic! And there was a shocking lack of people missing Claire, wasn't there? And of course, far too much of Sawyer stealing things!

(And your English is great! No need to apologize!)
( 35 comments — Leave a comment )

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