47 Lazar“s file
It wasn't the first time Francis had come into class dripping with sweat and told Lazar that they were in trouble.
Lazar was used to it and generally waited for Francis to explain himself to determine if he too needed to worry because no matter how big a problem they were facing, Francis tended to over-dramatize.
However, this time the situation looked different.
Lazar didn't know why, but he had the unpleasant impression that Francis had summed up their case perfectly well, and given the nature of their relationship, he even had an idea of what Francis was about to say...
Contrary to what everyone thought, what linked Lazar and Francis wasn't friendship but kind of a mutual assistance.
After a while Francis had come to think that he and Lazar had gotten past that stage and he was even beginning to believe, like everyone else, that they had become friends, but he was mistaken....
When it came to choosing his friends, Lazar was particularly elitist, reason why he simply didn't have any.
No one met his criteria and especially not Francis, whose extreme kindness and altruism were seen as weaknesses in his eyes.
On top of that, Francis was weak, phobic, and judgmental of Lazar's individualism which made him a fucking hypocrite because deep down even he knew that his great principles of mutual aid would vanish if he felt he was in danger.
With all of this, how could he match Lazar's conception of a friend...
The idea of what friendship should be, Lazar had gotten it from something his grandfather had told him when he first mentioned the people he fought with during the war.
'Throw a gun between two random people who claim to be friends and tell them that only one of them can survive. In most cases, they will hesitate for a while, then one of them will end up throwing himself at the gun to kill the other...'
'...I'm not making a generalization. Some will not have the courage to kill and will let themselves be killed, others will think that their life is worthless compared to the other and will let themselves be killed and many others will have different reactions leading to their sacrifice...'
'...But despite that, it would be very naive to believe that sacrificing oneself is the decision that represents the most humanity...'
'...After all, you and I are in a good position to know that we can't determine the true value of our lives, let alone compare it to the value of the lives of others before facing death up close...'
'...Before going to war, I thought that my life was worth more than anyone else's except your grandmother's and your father's...'
'...But war makes you change your mind about a lot of things and the number of people I could sacrifice for has increased....'
'...Where I went, death became so omnipresent around me that I just couldn't ignore it. For people who experience something like that there comes a time when you have to choose how you want to face death the next time you meet it...'
'...Personally, I chose to not only die but also live with honor and I only allowed myself to be backed up by people who thought the same way...'
'...I'll tell you what would happen if you made the same experience with two of the people with whom I sweated with, shed blood with, killed with during years...'
'...I guarantee you that they will fight for the gun from the start to put a bullet in their own heads...'
'...Prefering to die rather than see someone die and knowing that it's the same the other way, that's true friendship and under slightly different conditions, true love...'
'...I can't think of a better feeling than that and I hope one day you'll feel it too Lazar.'
'As for the value I place on my life...'
'...Worthless compared to that of my brothers and yours, priceless compared to all others...'
'...If I had to shatter this country a second time to save one of your lives, I would do it without hesitation.'
In the 3 months before the end of Lazar's grandfather's life, what he had said about those he considered as his brothers came true.
Stanislas, Anton, Ivan, Pavel and Konstantin. After 30 years of friendship, their sense of honor hadn't faded...
To protect Lazar and his grandfather, each of them sacrificed their lives, one after the other.
Such a strong sense of comradeship... It was a bit because of what his grandfather had said, but it was sincerely something that Lazar admired and wanted the chance to experience himself when he was done with his revenge.
However, he didn't forget that the reason his grandfather had been able to bond so strongly with his friends was because they had faced together hardships that very few people have to endure in their lives.
The chances of meeting people as exceptional as his grandfather and his friends were almost nil given the era in which Lazar lived.
Returning to Francis...
He was exceptional in his own way, but not in a way that Lazar could really respect.
The only talent Francis had was his hacking skills and the fact that he had used his talent on Lazar had always left a bitter taste in his mouth.
He couldn't have a peaceful mind knowing that Francis was one of the few people who knew his true identity.
"Sit down and keep your voice down, you're attracting too much attention." Lazar said dryly, tapping with the index finger of his right hand the part of their table belonging to Francis.
Francis lowered his extinguished gaze from Lazar to his chair, it was a bed that he needed right now but a chair wasn't that bad considering how tired he was...
He took off his backpack, put it on the ground, and then sat down.
"So?" Lazar asked without giving Francis time to breathe.
"It's about the file they kept on you at the FBI." Francis finally said to Lazar in an almost inaudible voice without daring to look into his eyes.