TW: Blood and Wounds
I walked through the abandoned cottage to where Cathine lay, my black boots creaking against the dark wooden floors. Outside the sunlight was fading away fast, but it didn’t stop me from seeing the decay. Rotten wood, vines and other plants creeping all over place, trash littering the rest of the cottage and finally her…
Cathine was lying in a corner of the small, abandoned cottage. She tried smiling brightly at me, to hide the pain, but I’d already seen it shining in her dark brown eyes. I could see the blood slowly pouring out of her side, leaking though her hand covering the wound. Her tan skin turning a red colour from all the blood.
I felt a stab of pain in my chest looking at her wound and grinning face. She was lying here because I couldn’t control myself. Because I hadn’t protected her like I should have. The pain kept coming at me with every though, crashing down like a wave on a beach shore. For leaving her behind, for hurting her, for that day. Everything that had happened was my fault. My fault. I should have never…
I felt tears threatening, but I couldn’t let them fall. I hadn’t cried since then and I wasn’t going to start now. If Cathine could be strong through this, so could I. I just wished that this hadn’t happened…
Damn it. I punched a nearby wall, trying to shake the thoughts away. Splinters of wood fell with a cloud of dust. I coughed turning my head away. Now was not the time. I needed too...
“You’re not regretting it, are you?”
When I didn’t answer immediately, she sat up. “Please, don’t.” She began coughing, blood leaking from the side of her mouth. “Don’t regret it. Not us, even if this is the end. Please, I beg you, as my last…”
Before I could think about what I was doing, my gloved hand covered her mouth as I kneeled before her. Looking into her tearing eyes, I whispered, trying to hide the fear in my voice, “Don’t worry about that. You still have a long time ahead of you. We’ll get you fixed up. I’ll…”
She looked at me with sadness and peace showing on her face all at once. “You can’t. Not this time, Runa.” She then placed a hand on the side of my face and smiled. Not her usual smile, the one she kept for me. For our special moments. "But I’m happy. I'm so happy.”
I felt her weakening, her hand slipping slightly from my face, leaving a bloody trail behind. Her blood. I grabbed her hand and held it to my face. “It’s not over, not yet.”
I placed my other hand behind her head and pulled her closer. Kissing her forehead, I poured some of my energy onto her. It was the last bit I had, but she was going to need it if she was to survive. I felt myself getting tired but I didn’t care. The pain I was feeling now would be nothing compared to losing her.
"I will always come back. So, when this is all over, you'll tell me everything, okay? About how great I am and how much you love me."
She closed her eyes and laughed, before sighing. “You were always a scoundrel. But…”
Dropping her hand, I placed my lips onto hers swallowing her words. “But nothing. You’ll make it. You always do.”
Her lips were so soft, a drug I could never get enough on. I wanted more but now was not the time. I needed to get her to safety. Taking off my jacket, I ripped it into strips. Picking her up gently, I propped her up against my chest. “Tell me if it hurts, okay?”
She nodded, still a little weak. It would take a bit of time for it to start working on her. Making quick work of the handmade bandages, I wrapped them around her waist. As I did so, I tried not to regret not listening to Kan properly when he tried to teach me this.
My thoughts and hands quickly stopped, as I looked at Cathine. “You okay?”
“Just a bit sore.” She hissed back, turning her head and burrowing it into my chest.
Sh*t. I wasn’t concentrating. “Sorry, bite me next time if it gets too sore.”
She lifted her head up slightly and stared into my purple eyes. Her eyes were a little dazed. “You really do always try.”
I broke from her gaze and looked at her purple dress instead. “Stop trying to distract me.”
I felt her smirking as I continued wrapping the rest of the bandages. There was still some blood, but at least the bandages would give us some time. After I tied the last of the bandages, I propped her against the wall, so I could get help.
Just as I started to pull away, she grabbed my shirt. I looked at her shocked. Just how much of my energy did I give her. She shouldn’t be able to move like this.
“This is how I distracted someone.”
I threw my hands out, holding myself against the wall, as she kissed me. Crap, the blood loss was getting to her. But as soon as my lips touched hers, she began deepening the kiss, and I felt myself slowly starting to lose control.
Pulling away with the last bit of my self-control, I looked at her. She was getting weak again. I needed to move or…
“Please…I want it…One last…” Before she could finish, her eyes closed and her body went still.
Damn it. I needed to move. Gently lifting Cathine into my arms, I stood up.
"Will you do it now? Will you finally listen?"
I turned and looked at the dark figure lurking at the doorway. Outside, I notice it had started pouring. Of course, he would show up at a moment like this. “This was your doing wasn’t it.”
I looked down at the still body in my arms. Cathine thankfully was still alive, but barely. She was going to need a healer and fast. No, rather she was going… I couldn’t finish that thought. The bandages weren’t enough, damn it.
The hooded figure stepped forward, removing his hood. “It was only to teach you. Your father is sick of your games. Do what he asks and the girl will live. If not… Well, you already know what will happen.”
“Do... Don’t… do…it…", Cathine whispered, her eyes still closed. "I…not…"
I turned away and looked into the man’s eyes. Blue eyes stared back at me, dancing with cruelty. “Father will do it.”
“Yes, of course.” The man smiled, all wolf-like. “Only the best for his little princess.”
“Fine. Then take her.”
The man continued smirking as he took Cathine from my arms. “Complete the mission and be sure to come back home before dinner. Your father will want to celebrate the return of the wayward princess.”
As quickly as he had appeared, he disappeared, only to leave behind a piece of paper. Picking it up, I felt dread and anger flow through me. I was going back, back to a place I vowed never to return to.
Crumpling the paper, I promised to never let this happen again. Father was going to get what was coming for him, even if I had to wait an eternity.
Because in the end, we both had time. Lots of it.