||[Jan. 19th, 2006|01:03 pm]
The Price of Love
Nightwing had been selfish. He had known the risks, and ignored them. And now it wasn't him that was paying with their pain, their blood, their tears. |
And so he ran. He had slipped a cold mask on his face and tried hard to ignore the burning ache that was building in his chest.
He had been selfish to act on the love he felt for the slim sorceress who was a former titan. He had known to love her was dangerous, and he had loved her anyway. And she loved him.
Now... oh, now... she had been captured by a villian who wanted him to feel pain. The last contact he'd had from her had been her screams echoing through his communicator. He'd crushed it in his hand, and now he could only think of finding her.
"Raven..." he growled, voice choked with anger and pain. He would not let her die; he would find her. He would not give up until he had her back.
Being selfish had gotten him here, and he was responsible for getting her back. He owed her no less.
- - -
Raven had finally screamed. It had taken some time before the pain ate away at her control. She was very pain tolerant, more so than anyone could have guessed, but even the training of the Azarathian priests could not hold back all she felt.
She could not bear to look at her hands, now. They did not hurt, but her stomach turned to look upon what had once been delicate and small, but perfectly formed hands... now they were bloody wrecks. He had crushed them. That had not been enough.
The smell of burnt flesh kept her naseated, and she refused to think of what her back looked like now that the skin had been burned away. Cool trails of blood slid down them, tormenting her with even their slow movement across the wounds. That had not been enough.
It had been, finally, Nightwing's voice. His fear, and horror at seeing what was being done to her. The hot anger that she could feel through their bond, mingled with terror and guilt. It had been his deep fear for her that made her scream; part in rage, and part in her own deep pain.
They'd left her alone, mostly, since the communicator went offline. She was thankful for that much, and wished for possibly the first time in her life that her healing powers could be used on herself. Usually she would berate herself for wishful thinking, but not now. It was all she had left, quite sure that she was close to death and not going to survive this night.
She could not know that Nightwing was even now approaching the building they had her held in. She'd forgotten that their bond worked both ways, that he could find her no matter where she was as long as she was alive. She could not process that sounds she heard as explosions, and screams of the dying.
It seemed like forever before the sounds faded away and she felt the urge to close her eyes, and drift to sleep. Somehow she knew that was a bad idea, but it was such a strong impulse that she almost did.
She heard the door slide open and a deep, icy fear filled her before she could fake a brave face. They were back, to hurt her again! She felt the tears start and she moved as best she could, curled up in the fetal position on the floor. But the hand that touched her arm was gentle, not like before.
"Dear God, I'm so sorry." a voice muttered. She started, eyes blurred by tears and pain, and could not see the newcomer. But the voice.
"Richard." she squeaked, voice too raspy and low for anyone but him to hear, even if they had not all been dead or dying. "Is this another dream?"
He lifted her very carefully, adverse to touch her back and cause more damage, but knowing that he could not leave her hear even long enough to call an ambulance.
"No dream." he managed. "I'm here. It'll be alright now, Raven. I won't let them hurt you again."
She buried her face in the crook of his neck and let herself cry, telling herself it was only the pain that made the salty tears fall from her eyes.