After

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[MACK]

My father is waiting by the water.

"Oh, I was wondering when you'd show up Mack," he tells me.

I blink my eyes as my brain tries to catch up with my surroundings. We're by the park by my old apartment, the Vertigo skyline in the background with a clear and sunny day. When I look down I'm still wearing my torn up uniform with dirt and blood lining my arms. The last thing I remember was a pounding headache and now, this? But if my dad is here does that mean...

"You coming?"

Well, I don't see why not. I walk over and sit cross-legged by the pond next to my dad. Our reflection is blurry in the water and I have a fuzzy feeling in my brain. The sunlight is too bright.

"I'm sorry how things turned out Mack. I tried to protect you so you could have a normal life. I never wanted you to have to deal with all this Super mess," my dad tells me.

I sigh. "I was never normal."

"I suppose not. Still, you did good Mack. You saved the city even if it meant risking your own life," my father smiles at me, "I'm proud of you."

It's everything I've wanted. To see my dad again. For him to tell me I did right. For it to be sunny and ok.

"Am I dead?" I ask as I pick at the grass and let it blow away in the breeze. Honestly, if I am dead this isn't so bad. I can deal.

My dad shrugs, "Probably not."

"So you're not real," I tell him quietly. This is all just a dream, a good dream, but it's fake nonetheless. I can tell by the odd shapes of the building, the blur around my reflection, the fact it's all too good to be true.

My "dad" shrugs again, "Eh, I'm just a figment of your imagination. But don't you think your real dad would be proud?"

Would he? I think back of everything he did, everything he stood for, and how he tried to make things right in the end.

"Yah, he would. Thanks." I lean back and let the breeze run through my hair. I don't think about anything at all and it's lovely.

After a while, my dad stands up and I follow suit.

"Do you have to go?"

He shakes his head, "No. You do. Sorry about this Mack. I love you."

"I love you too." I say confused as my father pushes me back and I fall into the water.

It's icy cool, electrifying, and I wake up gasping for air.

"Gah!" I shout as I flail up and try to make sense of my surroundings. Theres a tube in my arm and a beeping monitor in the background. I'm wearing a white hospital gown with the grime finally washed away. My muscles feel weak. My head is killing me.

The Detective is sitting in a chair across by the bed. She barely seems fazed by me freaking out. "Oh good. You're up."

Out of all the people I know I can't say she's the first person I want to see after almost dying. Still, I'm glad she's ok. It all comes rushing back: the bombs, Levi, the General. "Did we win?"

The Detective grins, something I didn't know was physically possible for her face, "Yah, we did."

Everything still hurts but I somehow find myself laughing with relief as I sink back into the pillows.

The Detective quickly fills me in on everything I missed. Apparently I've been in a coma for the last two weeks. I'm covered in random bruises and one arm is broken. The Switch somehow messed with my vital systems: I can't hear out of one ear, I'll be prone to headaches, and I'll be weak for a long time. The Detective said I would probably be dead if I weren't the Prime, if I were just a normal human. It's a miracle I'm even alive.

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