Despite the cooler nights, he had never lit a fire on either island, not wanting to draw the attention of any super predator to his position. Instead, the trees had provided the only shelter Alan could recall through those long nights. On Isla Nubla, Hammond's grandchildren had huddled against him, keeping the chill from his older bones with their smaller bodies tucked in tight around him, and he'd slept despite promising to stay awake. On Isla Sorna, he could only watch from the opposite side of the tree as the Kirbys huddled together as a family unit, leaving him out in the cold as the night passed too slowly.
He could have asked to join them with words or gestures but part of him wanted his body to feel as cold and numb as his heart and soul.
Billy was gone and even though he had tried to explain to Erik how he felt about Billy, he knew he had left so much unsaid. He couldn't explain to a boy that, no matter how high in the sky, the sun never rose until he saw it reflected in Billy's eyes, for Billy was his Helios, drawing his fiery chariot of the sun across Alan's sky. Until then it was a cold disk giving light, but no warmth reached beneath his skin, beneath muscle and bone to the very core of his being.
When Ellie moved on after the events at Jurassic Park, she had explained her reasons for going by saying, "You never realize what you're missing until it's almost taken away."
For Ellie that had been the joy of parenthood, of family, and he had to admit that she looked radiant the last time he saw her, with all the fire of passion and love and awe for her children and husband glowing in her eyes. She didn't miss the barren cold nights and hot days of Montana, sifting through millennia of dust and sand for clues to the past, not when she had the future held tightly in her arms.
Alan had gained no such epiphany on Isla Nubla except for a firmer belief that the past should remain in the past, and that Hammond's dinosaurs had no place in the present. Perhaps that was why he'd been fated to return to Hammond's creations.
He'd had his epiphany now but, unlike with Ellie, he'd seen his future swept away in the river beneath the vicious beaks and talons of pteranodons. He drew his arms tighter around his cold body, gracing Erik with what he hoped was a reassuring smile, and he wondered if he would ever see the sun rise again.