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Rated: E · Short Story · Emotional · #2277781
A short story taking place at the same time as "Who Will Save the Hero Now?".
         "You saved a lot of lives today." The words flitted past him, not penetrating the deathly haze hovering about him quite yet. He could feel the slowing of his heart. Growing ever fainter, slowly extinguishing the very warmth that made him... him. It would be gone soon, he would be gone soon. That which kept him alive, it grew fainter with every beat of the drum, a drum that didn't sound. If a drum beat, but didn't make a sound, does it exist? ...Does he exist?
         "You saved a lot of lives today, Sir." A noise filled the hospital room. "Sons, daughters, mothers, fathers. They all exist, and will continue to exist because of you, sir. You saved us all."
         He blinked, as a sort of clarity fell over him that turned the dull sounds of odd syllables and strange hitches of emptiness into not noise, but... words. The words, her words, a... woman's words? They settled around his ear, thrumming warmly beneath his deathly cold skin in a sick mockery of mortality. For death was a bitter, bitter place to be, empty. And yet, the warmth, his warmth, no matter how small, stood in direct defiance of it.
         He felt his body, but warmer now, rattle as something... no, someone, his love gripped his shoulders. "Yet... You couldn't save yourself, Sir," The woman leaned towards her dear friend for one last time. She smiled a terribly sad smile as their foreheads touched. The man was cold. "And I... I couldn't save you either. I couldn't-..."
         He felt warm, more so than before, as tears that were not his own drenched his face. But his heart was terribly cold. "I'm sorry that I couldn't be your Hero. I'm sorry."
         The warmth increased, as she embraced him, but his heart was frozen now. He ached to make the words form on his lips, but as if to spite him, he couldn't get them out. He ached to smile with her, to laugh with her again. He ached to say 'I love you,' but he was no longer capable of it.
         As if she knew, as if she understood this, her hold around his own body grew tighter and heavier, as her whispered 'I love you's' peppered his skin. He felt his body, cold and still, sink into the feeling, into the warmth of his one true love, who loved him eternally, much more than he thought he deserved, even if he couldn't say it back. Even if he wouldn't be there to keep her warm on the chilly nights, even if he wouldn't be there to kiss away her tears, even if he wouldn't be there as she grew old. It was supposed to be 'they'. Supposed to be, supposed to be, supposed to be-...
         He felt a warmth that was his own flood down his face. And then, he felt nothing.
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