A/N: I write one of these after every "Fox killed Fives" esque comment lol. Please don't read if you're having a rough day.
"You gonna do it today?"
Fox sighs but doesn't look up from his datapad, despite the fact that he hasn't been reading the words for the past several minutes. "Right on time, as usual."
His guest scoffs. "You say that as if you're surprised."
"I know," Fox blandly agrees. "I shouldn't be."
"And yet here you are."
"For the moment." Fox's fingers twitch where they rest on the desk, and it takes every bit of self-control to keep them from reaching for his blaster. "What do you want this time?"
"I want you to look at me for once, demagolka ," he spits.
Demagolka . That's a new one.
Breathe in. One. Two. Three. Breathe out.
"You know I can't do that," Fox sighs, continuing to scroll his eyes over the report he should be proofreading. It's all just a blur to him. Just a blur, like…
"Oh, got a conscience now? You didn't have a problem looking at me when you shot me."
Fox's fingers freeze and he nearly draws blood when he reflexively bites down on his tongue to keep from lashing out. It hadn't helped before.
"What do you want?" His voice is as cracked as his soul, if he even has one.
"Same thing I wanted yesterday, and the day before that," his brother whispers. "Gonna pull that trigger today, Fox?"
"What's it to you?" He's wary now, because it's one thing when he asks himself that question, but, well…
"What's it to me?" Fives echoes, and Fox finally drags his gaze up to study this lifelike spectre. He's lounging in the solitary chair across from Fox's desk, his fiery eyes locked onto Fox's. A sharp smirk plays on his lips, like he knows each word he speaks is a dagger to Fox's chest.
"Don't answer that," Fox stops him just as he opens his mouth.
Fives continues on like he hasn't heard him. "I feel I should get to know whether or not my murderer is gonna off himself," he snipes back. "Especially considering you didn't spare me a passing thought until after my body was cold."
"I was doing my duty," Fox says tiredly. This isn't the first time they've had this conversation.
"So was I!" Fives snarls, leaning forward and bracing himself against the desk. "I was trying to save our brothers, the Jedi, the Republic–!"
"By assassinating the Chancellor?!" Fox snaps back, datapad lying forgotten as he stares down his demons. "That makes you a traitor, no matter your intentions!"
"Are you listening to yourself? You killed a brother to protect someone who's never given a damn about you!"
"No one does!" Fox finally shouts. "We're clones. We are clones and even being a brother doesn't excuse you from attempted murder."
"But it excuses you from mine?" Fives snorts.
Fox laughs, an empty and hollow sound that would send chills up anyone's spine if they heard it. "Clearly it doesn't. Why else would you be here?"
He's snapped out of his thoughts and refocuses on the empty room, save for Stone popping his head in through the open door. "Hey, Stone." He cringes slightly at how weary he sounds and defensively runs his fingers through his hair.
Stone watches him silently for a moment before responding. "Everything alright? Heard you from out in the hall."
"Yeah, yeah, 'm fine," Fox waves off his concerns half-heartedly. "Just a bit of stress getting to me. Won't happen again."
Stone's hum in response shows he doesn't believe Fox in the slightest, but is willing to brush it off for now. "Alright. Comm me if you need anything."
Fox waits until the door slides shut to fall back into his seat. The interruption has saved him from any more self-loathing today, but he knows his reprieve won't last long.
Fives will be back. Same time tomorrow, as always.