It would be quick. It would be easy. It wouldn't be painless, but in the end it would be worth that pain. Teal eyes stared down at shaking hands. Hands shouldn't shake for a task like this. It would make this worse. He had been considering it for hours, days, months, years now. His hand was still shaking. Every time the thoughts came to him he shook. He shouldn't be shaking for a task like this.
The thought was an easy enough thought to come by. Alistair had decided that everyone probably had thoughts like these at one point in there life. Maybe some people, some people like him, had thoughts like these constantly. There was no way there was anyone who didn't at least consider this for a second before thinking, "This is foolish, why would I think anything like this?" and then move on. Alistair was not the type to let go of a thought like this.
Pros and cons, best to look at this diplomaticallythat is what father would say. He turned over the kitchen knife in his hands. Cons first.
It would hurt
He would be dead
The floor would be a mess
He would be damned to Vortex
Well, those did seem rather uncomfortable. But there are two sides to every coin. Now for the pros.
They wouldn't be able to torture him anymore
He would be dead
He couldn't hurt anyone by accident anymore
After years of wandering Vortex maybe he could see Gwen, Father, Arthur, Mother, and Leona again.
A tie, very bothersome. His hands were still shaking. This wouldn't be his first attempt, and if he failed again he knew it would not be his last. Each time he would get so close only to be saved. He never wanted to be saved. Why did those bastards always save him?
One time he tried hanging himself. It was when he was much younger. That day everyone was out of the house. Gwen was still small, too young to have memories of the event. Arthur yelled at him for days.
"How could you be so selfish?"
"How is it selfish? It's my choice!"
"It's your choice to leave your family behind? You're an idiot!"
And then Arthur slapped Alistair upside the head. The slap didn't hurt too much. Moving his neck was what hurt. Hands still shaking. He should hold the knife with one and his wrist with the other, that would stabilize him. The pros and cons didn't matter. This was his choice. A choice I should have made so long ago.
If he hadn't failed with that hanging when he was seventeen everything would have worked out for the better. He never would have made it through his apprenticeship and been made a scholar. He never would have worked in the Library. He never would have come to love Gwen. He never would have found the priest. He never would have destroyed all the lives he did. Too bad he was such a failure. "You're an idiot!" Arthur's voice screamed in his head. Arthur was so much louder than Alistair. That was why his brother was the better.
Pulling down the neckline of his shirt Alistair felt the scars of his failures. Raw reddish pink lines running across his neck. Two from slashings, one from hanging. All of them failures. One would think slashing their own neck would be simple. It should be simple.
Step 1: Acquire a sharp object
Step 2: Slash throat
Simple. So simple Alistair could foul it up spectacularly. "You ruin everything!" Arthur would shout at him when they were small. Alistair learned to stop touching things that weren't his and to stay in the house. "You can't do anything right."
He couldn't even kill himself properly. What a waste of flesh and blood. Father never said that. Father never said anything like that to Alistair. Father just smiled and would say, "You will find your place." Father didn't know that Alistair's place was in a grave. Better yethe shouldn't have been born. That would have solved all of the problems. Those problems would have never started without him. Another pro came to mind.
He would do something right for once.
There, now the scales were tipped in his favor. Deft fingers unbuttoned his collar, exposing the raw red lines that would never disappear to the dusty light of his room. He rolled his neck, as if stretching it would help with the process. It didn't. Nothing helps with the process, but Alistair could pretend. He brought the knife to his neck. Curiously, his hand wasn't shaking as much now. A pained and relaxed sigh escaped him. His vision was growing blurry so he shut his eyes. One hand wrapped around the hilt of the blade. One hand wrapped around the wrist wrapped around the hilt of the blade. Cold metal pressed against one of the raw red lines.
Three times you thought? Hah! Five times he had tried. Sixth time must be the charm. He swallowed all of his welling emotions, the blade bounced in his hand as his Adam's apple bobbed up and down. His hand was steady; he was resolute in his decision, this time he wouldn't fail.
He gasped and brought his hand down quickly. The knife slipped into the band around his waist. Quickly brushing the back of his hand against his face he removed all evidence of any tears. He cried so much. He was so weak. Arthur never cried.
"Yes Jess?" He said with a strained smile.
The girl stood in the doorway. Light flooded in from behind her making her expression impossible to read. Alistair was never good at reading expressions anyways. That was why he was given to the Library.
"You didn't eat dinner
" her voice was quiet and far away.
"I'm sorry. I didn't realize it was that late."
A lie. A horrible, cunning, perfect lie. He knew it was long past sunset. He knew that everyone was downstairs in the tavern eating and drinking. Keero was probably telling the story of one of his more famous assassinations. Crystal would tease him. Damien would sit stoically and listen with a thin smile on his equally thin lips. It would be fun. Alistair would sour such an event. "You ruin everything!"
"I brought you some still warm stew."
Suddenly Jess was sitting on the bed in front of Alistair. The scholar managed a weak smile as he looked at the bowl in her hands. Steam rose from the contents within the ceramic bowl. She must have been warming it with fire elementalism. Jess was such a clever and brilliant girl. The Library would love a girl like her.
"Thank you," his hands were steady as he took the bowl from her.
Jess's hand reached out and brushed the side of his face. Painful shivers ran down his spine. "You're an idiot!"
"I'm worried about you," she whispered.
Teal eyes met her heterochromatic eyes, one bright brown one bright green. A false smile paraded across his face. One hand reached up and cupped Jess's hand to his cheek.
"Don't be, I'm fine."
The light flooding from the hallway still obscured Jess's expression. Did she know he was lying? No. Her thumb brushed under his eye and she leaned forward to kiss his forehead.
"Alright. Don't miss breakfast tomorrow morning."
More graceful than a doe, she stood up and swept out of the bedroom, shutting the door almost silently behind her. Alistair was alone again. The knife was in his belt. It would be quick. But he was holding the bowl and the stew didn't smell that bad.