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A Broken Sword

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His eyes couldn’t widen any more than this. His mind was blank as he stared at what had just unfolded before his eyes. It was still so unreal. So unreal that he felt like he was dreaming. Dreaming, yeah, right. That was probably what was going on. Yes, he was just having a nightmare. He should pinch himself and he would wake up. So he did. But waking up wasn’t what his brain had in mind. And he couldn’t really blame it, now could he.

He fell to his knees as his mind short-circuited and the two swords in his hands clattered to the floor. He was still staring, and still couldn’t believe any off it. He knew this was real, but somewhere in his head he wanted it to be a dream. He wanted it to be the worst nightmare he could wake up from. He wanted that with all his burning being and soul.

He felt empty, like damn empty. Something shattered and he made a choked noise as the pieces of metal and white fell to the floor with a dull thud. He realized there was no clang, just that empty, hollow thud on the ground as his most treasured possession was broken in half.

Somewhere, someone was screaming. Screaming at him to stand and telling him to fight. But, he couldn’t hear it, or maybe he did. But he didn’t want to. There was nothing left to fight for. Nothing at all. A sob built into his chest and his eyes burned. Something like that shouldn’t have happened. Not to him.

His dream was shattered. He couldn’t complete it without her. He had no promise to uphold if she wasn’t there to make it a reality. He could never do it without her. She was his drive, his dream to move forward. His strength and his sanity. He’d be nothing if it hadn’t been for her. Maybe he still wasn’t anything.

Yes, that was just it. He was still too weak, too weak to do anything. He couldn’t protect the one thing precious to him, he could keep his promise to her. He couldn’t protect his friends like this, nor his dreams, nor his loved ones and everything else he fought for.

A hand wrapped around his throat and suddenly he was off the floor and choking. Gasped breaths felt him mingled with tears of anger, sadness and pain. Grief may be the strongest one among them. His friends were still screaming for him, but it felt like his ears were plugged and blocking out the noise. He could see a sword hurling at him at incredible speed, but he had no strength to evade it.

It struck him, piercing through his flesh and spilling his blood on the battlefield. An anguished scream left his lips and he felt the searing hot pain lace up into his brain. Now, every sense he had lost, came rushing back in a bang and he was hit hard with all the noises, smells and screams.

A cry of his name was heard and he turned his head to lock his grey eyes on black ones. He could see the utter horror on the face of the one he followed. He could see the betrayal and the pain. He wanted to call out and tell him it was alright, but deep in his heart he knew that was wrong.

A cold hand gripped around his heart as he replayed the image of his sword shattering in his mind. A cry of pain and grief left him as he was dumped on the floor, cutlass sticking out of his abdomen. The man that stood above his crumpling form had a sick smile on his face and he could tell the man wanted nothing more than to see him dead where he lay.

The man was suddenly shoved aside by a black clad leg on fire and he felt relief flood him. It was like a floodgate opened and it let out all of his feelings. A sob escaped him and he traced a hand to the wound, gripping around the sword and yanking it out. The black dress shoes came back and a hand gripped his arm, hauling him up.

He couldn’t see through his tears, he couldn’t hear through the ringing in his ears. His blurry eyes fell on something that had slipped his mind for a second. Two pieces of broken sword lying in the middle of the battle field. Light surrounding it and a kind of peaceful silence.

Something tore through his aching heart and he wondered if his precious sword could be repaired and if her spirit would still reside within it. He wondered, but he didn’t know if it was possible. He didn’t know if he would live to see it. He didn’t know, for he didn’t know anything anymore as blackness took him from his pain.

It was like he hadn’t been asleep at all. The blackness pulled away and he felt himself lying on a soft cover, bandaged and healing. He felt utterly useless, broken, shattered. He shifted in the bed, sitting up and wincing as his wound hurt him. It was silent in the infirmary. Utterly silent.

He frowned, swinging his legs over the edge of the bed and standing. He shuffled to the door, swinging it open and shielding his eyes against the bright light. A few cheers could be heard and he wondered what was going on. Looking, he could see his friends, his nakama, stare at him with happy faces.

He couldn’t help but smile.

The cyborg stepped forward then and handed him a cloth. He wondered how long he had been out, but he didn’t care as he took the offered cloth. It had a familiar weight to it and he frowned, not knowing what it contained. He slowly opened the cloth and his eyes could only widen.

His sword. It was b again. He stared at it with wide eyes, almost not believing it. He could see where the fracture had been, and where it was mended. He looked up at his friends, the ones who gave him back his dream and the ones who were and will always be his drive to fulfil it.

Tears blurred his vision and a dopey smile broke out over his face. His knees buckled with the force of his happiness and he cried openly in front of them, willingly this time. He was so happy, he thought he would burst. Arms came around him and the hug was more than deserved. He could only utter a single sentence, the only thing his scratchy and clogged throat allowed past the tears of joy.

‘Thank you.’