Author email: email@example.com
Disclaimer: None of these characters belong to me. They all belong to Storm Constantine! No harm meant, only play!
Warnings: AU, sap, Pell POV, some angst, some dark, some language, and the dreaded….songfic.
Characters/Pairings: Pell/Rue, hinted Cal/Pell/Rue etc
Spoilers: Books 1-5
Summary: Pell has lost so much…but will he lose anymore?
Beta: The ever patient MA!
Author’s Note: Written for the Forever Monthly Fanfic Challenge. The song used is ‘Pale’ by Within Temptation. Thanks for reading and feedback is appreciated!
/The world seems not the same
Though I know nothing has changed
It’s all my state of mind
I can’t leave it all behind
Have to stand up to be stronger/
So much has changed. I look back and wonder ‘What more can I bear?’ I could say that I can bear a lot, but in truth I don’t think I can. It’s so funny too. We are Wraeththu. We’re supposed to be the next step for humans and yet we carry many of the same flaws that we did before becoming as we are. The second generation, I know, looks upon us as if we’re just a touch on the crazy side. Maybe we are. We cling to what was while denying it…what does that bring us?
I think about this as I hold onto Caeru’s hand. Caeru, someone I both love and hate. Someone I created a pearl with, whether destined or not. And yet, here he is, near death, sure to be scarred beyond any ability to ever create a pearl again, and I can’t seem to figure out what I can do. Because it’s my fault he’s there.
It’s my fault.
/Have to try
To break free
From the thoughts in my mind
Use the time that I have
I can say goodbye
Have to make it right/
I look up as I hear him sigh again in his sleep and search his pale drawn face, feeling just as drawn and worn down as he looks. Turning my face back to where I am holding his hand, I realize that I can’t even look at where our pearl was cut from his body. I had stayed with him, healing him as best I could even to the brink of death for myself, but it wasn’t enough. I couldn’t do enough for him and now he’s scarred so horribly that he’ll never be able to become with pearl again.
‘Why didn’t you move faster?!’
The question keeps drumming in my head like a line of tribal drums, dictating to me my failure in protecting my family. My family. I never say it much but he is. Caeru is family. So was the pearl he was carrying from me and Cal.
The one har I need and he’s not here. I don’t even know if I have the strength to care. I find that I just need to focus on one har. The har before me.
That’s all that matters.
/Have to find
‘Cause I know in the end it’s worth while
That the pain that I feel slowly fades away
It will be all right/
I take another deep breath at the same time as Rue and smile fondly. Even when we were fighting, we were in tune. I lean my head against his frail hand and close my eyes, sending some more of my energy into him to bolster him. I can feel his mind touch mine and I reassure him, smiling unconsciously as he huffs before resigning himself to my ministrations. I know it’s a front. He’s never been able to resist me even when he was pissed to all hell at me for something I did.
That’s just Rue for you.
But how often have I taken advantage of that? How often have I strung him along with niceties and affection only to turn cold on him? I’m ashamed to realize that it’s been too many times. And I don’t even want to think about Abrimel. My first born…and the painful reminder that I had used Caeru because he looked like Cal. He didn’t deserve half the shit I did to him because of my anger at myself and my own personal shame. Hell, he didn’t deserve any of it. Why do I blame him when I know it was meant to be? Maybe it’s just because I feel like Thiede used them both to get me under his thumb. I don’t know anymore.
It just is.
I should realize
Time is precious
It is worth while
Despite how I feel inside
Have to trust it’ll be alright
Have to stand up to be stronger/
I look up again and smile as I see Caeru’s pale blue eyes watching me, though his gaze is just a touch hazy. It’s better from what it was before when I could see death in the shadows of his eyes. “Hey, you are supposed to be asleep,” I chide him softly and swallow a bit as it comes out more like a husky croak.
He snorts and I catch the flinch that the move costs him but he hides it with as much dignity as he’s allowed at the moment in his condition. “Someone’s thinking too loud,” he retorts raspily and I chuckle before reaching over with a hand and getting him some water. I shift closer to him and help him sit up just enough to drink from the glass before I gently help him to rest back after putting aside the glass. I then just follow my instincts and curl up on the bed with him, holding him close with him resting on my arm while my other hand laces with one of his.
“Sorry for waking you,” I murmur as I stroke his head with my fingers and press a kiss to his head, just wanting to tell him somehow…some way that he means so much to me.
“I’ll get you for it later,” he mumbles in reply and I smile against his head as he drifts back to sleep, nestled close to me. Usually he would doubt and argue with me about me coddling him, but he’s been through so much. I think he knows we both need this closeness.
/This night is too long
Have no strength to go on
No more pain I’m falling away
Through the mist see the face
Of an angel, calls my name
I remember you’re the reason I have to stay/
As I hold him close to me, I let my own eyes drift shut and my energy to flow into him, strengthening him and healing him as best I can. I don’t think I can do anymore and I regret that. He’s here because of me, because I had to push for something greater than what any of us were ready for. He’s so strong though…far stronger than anyone gives him credit for.
Most especially me.
Cal is gone. I don’t know where he is, but he’s not here with us. He’s not here…where he’s needed.
He’s not here.
But I know who is and I’m not going to lose you, Rue. I promise you that I will try to make it up to you. To make things better. Just please…don’t leave me.
Help me to stay here.
”I will be here, Pell.”
Those words give me more hope than I deserve. Perhaps I can indeed look towards the future and see color instead of black and white.