a fanfic by ImChiquita

Lieutenant Hook stared out the window. In reflection of his mood, the sky was overcast and dreary. He returned to his melancholy pacing, his hands clasped behind his back. His posture was rigid.

He felt as if he was being held prisoner in the Bachelor Officer's Quarters.

The day he returned from delivering the caskets, SICON HQ had decided to remove him from command, and forced him out of his own quarters and into temporary lodging. It was an effective enough statement that said, plainly, he had lost everything.

Hook was exhausted. He couldn't eat, and yet, somehow he managed to chew and swallow; it wasn't enough to keep the weight on him, and his uniform began to sag on him. Already a lean and muscled man, Hook now looked ragged. There were circles under his eyes, his skin was rough and dry, and his goatee was now peppered with grey.

The man could not sleep.

He'd tried, all right. But his dreams were vividly haunted by the images of his squad. The voices came back to him. Not just the screams of their deaths, but, their laughter, their daily conversations. He wasn't sure if that was a blessing or a curse. Sometimes, the dreams were so real, he'd call out their names, and they would slowly turn to look at him, pity in their eyes... and he would wake up.

This tortuous activity only broke him down further.

He hadn't left the BOQ since he moved in. The one or two times he did, he could feel himself the target of many looks. Mostly, ambivelant, but there was the occasional sadness. And again, Hook wanted to die.

Once, he had made the attempt to take his own life. But as he prepared his noose, it occurred to him that maybe, this action would only lessen the lives of his team.

Oh, and being the single representative of Hook's Hellion's didn't?

He slammed his fist through the wall.

It wasn't the only hole.

He was definitely going to have his pay docked. How much longer would it take for SICON to decide what to do with him? More and more, that mind-swipe was looking good. A welcome relief to rid him of his demons.

Wearily, he lied down on the bed. From an observer's point of view, it was more that he collapsed on the bed.

If he couldn't sleep through the night, Hook promised himself he'd visit the clinic. And ask for the dreaded sleeping pills.

He simply raised his eyebrows at the wonder of how far he'd fallen. *No one* asked for sleeping pills; they were given under orders.

As the rain began to fall, he closed his eyes.

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