not_a_seagull
rating: 0+x

Jack Forme felt the chill in the air as he strolled down the sidewalk in the town of Dyer, Washington. The air in the small town always had a cold bite to it, thus necessitating Jack to wear a thick coat on top of his already bulky sweater. Every house on the suburban street had a pumpkin or a cheesy ghost decoration in front of it. It was midnight, and all the trick-or-treaters had gone home. He was the only one outside, and an observer might mistake him for a midnight jogger.

Jack breathed out, and watched his breath turn into a visible mist in the cold atmosphere. The town of Dyer was two hours from the nearest highway, and was only accessible through a gravel path of a back road of a slum in a city nobody knew the name of. The town didn't even have internet. It was the perfect place for somebody like Jack Forme to lay low from prying government eyes after all the things that he'd done.

A man in a white lab coat emerged from behind one of the houses. It wasn't the man Jack was expecting; rather than the well-trimmed black hair and clean face of Dr. Dan, Jack was met with a man with shaggy, gray-ish hair, a goatee, and a distinctive trilby. Even before he saw the badge with the Foundation shield on it, he knew what he was up against.

"Hello again, Jack," said Dr. Clef.

"Good evening, Clef," replied Jack.

The two men walked out into the road and faced eachother, like two outlaws about to pull guns on eachother and engage in a duel. Jack knew that that might be closer to the truth than he was comfortable with.

"You chose a good place to hide, Jack," said Clef after an uncomfortable moment of silence, "took us a little while to find ya'. Your game with Dr. Dan wouldn't have held out forever, y'know."

Jack said nothing, staring at Clef with a smile on his face.

"Whaddya' have to say for yourself?" Clef continued. He took out a lighter and a cigarette, then lit the cigarette and stuck it in his mouth. "you've pissed everybody off this time, Jack. The GOC lookin' for ya', same as us. You've pretty much given the finger to ORIA. Hell, I don't even know how you made them angry, but even the Serpent's Hand is lookin' for your head!"

Jack continued his silence, looking into Clef's eyes.

"Alright, stop looking at me, like that, you fucking psychopath," Clef said after some time, "listen, mate. I'll level with you. You're fucked. You're on national news, here. I know the people here don't have internet, but it was only a matter of time until somebody recognized you. The only reason I'm here instead of a SWAT team is because the higher-ups managed to convince the President to let me handle it instead. It's either us, or a jail cell. Whaddya' want?"

"The Foundation, actually giving somebody a choice?" said Jack in a quiet voice, breaking the silence he'd held, "you've changed, since I last saw you. I think I'll choose to stay here, though. It's quite nice, once you get used to the cold."

"You—" Clef stuttered, before composing himself. "Look. I hate you, and you hate me. That's a given. But everybody else is also after you, and at least with us, you're guaranteed three square meals and a warm cot. You know what you did. Now, please, Jack."

"I think we both know I did nothing wrong," Jack replied, "in fact, from a certain perspective, I did a public service. The world's been going in the wrong direction since, well, since as far as I can remember. We always need a change every once in a while."

"People died, Jack," replied Clef, "thousands, at least. We're still counting, it's probably in the tens of thousands."

"Who said that they should stay alive in the first place, Clef?" said Jack, approaching Clef as he spoke. "I killed ten bad men to save one good man. Is that really wrong?"

"I'll give you one last chance, Jack. Come with us."

"I've seen firsthand what you'll do to me if I did."

Jack didn't let Clef finish his next sentence. He took out a chef's knife from under his jacket and sunk it into his chest. The knife was SCP-668, an interesting find that Jack had taken on his way out from his last Foundation site. He'd been keeping it on him just in case.

The knife worked. The firing squad that Clef had inevitably brought with him did not work, but Clef still reached for his gun. "Son… of a bitch!" he shouted as he took his firearm from a hidden compartment and shot Jack in the shoulder.

Jack backed off, and Clef pointed his gun at him. After a fake surrender, Jack rushed in and tackled Clef to the ground, sinking his knife into his arm in the process. Clef fired a shot or two with his pistol, but one missed and the other grazed Jack's ear.

Clef dropped his gun, grabbed one of the nearby jack-o-lanterns, and smashed it over Jack's head. This stunned Jack for a moment, and let Clef mount him and reach to pick up his gun again. Jack wasted no time in pushing Clef off of him and throwing him to the wall, tripping him over a plastic ghost decoration and sending him to the ground. He then threw himself upon Clef and repeatedly with the knife. After a prolonged struggle, Clef went limp, and his eyes faded out of focus.

Jack knew the effect of SCP-668 would only last for so long, so he moved quickly, using his abilities to remove the skin from Clef's face, and replace it with his own. It might have taken a lesser man a few weeks, with the help of a team of skin tanners. He had the swap done in a few minutes.

After some more doctoring, he walked out with a fake limp from the alley, and met face to face with the squadron of heavily armed military troopers. "Son of a bitch stabbed me," Jack muttered, trying to imitate Clef's American accent, "I think I might need some stitching up, but I'll be fine, I think."

"Are you sure you're alright, Dr. Clef?" asked one of the more heavily-armored men, "I wish I could've helped, but I—"

Jack took out SCP-668 from under his new lab coat, and showed it to the soldier. "It's SCP-668," he said, still trying to replace his natural accent with that of Clef's, "must've swiped it after— after he—" Jack coughed up no small amount of blood, a combination of knife wounds, bullet wounds, and good acting.

The commander stepped back in disgust. "You're definitely not okay. Alpha-7, Alpha-12, bring him to the truck, and sawbones him up best you can before we can get back to Site-23."

"Yessir!" the men yelled before taking Jack by the arms and pulling him to the truck. He was lain down in a cot of some kind before being dosed with anesthesia and losing consciousness. As he was dragged by the Sandman into the realm of sleep, he realized that he was standing on unsteady ground, and began to wonder how he'd deal with his new cards.