"Just One Death Away"
It's cruel and unusual and I *really* don't know where it came from. I'm in a weird mood today, but I've got a few more stories pending, and those will be better, I promise!
Rating: PG, angst, deathfic!
Pairing: none, Hawkeye's POV
Archive: mash-slash…somebody *please* resurrect it before I die??? And it can also be found at T'Len's & Lady Charena's place.
Disclaimer: none of it's mine, they belong to FOX, all eleven seasons (and don't I hate them for it), and I'm just borrowing them for a little fun. No profits are made.
Hold your breath, hold that thought, hold on to the memories. Hold a photograph, hold me to that promise...just hold *me*...
What used to be the future is now the present and the only thing making it bearable are the memories of the past. Like oxygen, breath by breath, they keep him alive. Not that it matters anymore. Inhale…exhale…inhale pain and take it all into himself…exhale life through his gloved fingers…inhale Trapper John…exhale B.J. Hunnicutt…and each breath tastes of moonshine and blood.
The sweetish metallic taste dominates, fills his mouth and snakes past his lips in warm, liquid tendrils. Blood…his own, this time.
Funny how he's almost forgotten its distinct flavor. This is himself he's tasting, his life.
Night…October fog shrouds rural Connecticut…and a beer-inebriated truck-driver loses control of his rig to run another car – its driver perfectly sober, yes, the irony of it is beautiful – off the road.
The perfect recipe, it accomplishes what he's often thought of but always failed to do.
Maybe this is for the better, maybe the late Father Mulcahy was right and there is a God who has now finally decided to listen to his silent prayers. His only regret is that it hasn't happened sooner, sparing him the decades of waiting and withering and remembering.
He cannot move or see, everything is dark and each breath provides less and less air. He doesn't panic, though. How odd that there isn't the slightest trace of fear. And why should there be? All his life he's been on a first-name basis with Death, engaged forever to his mortal enemy
'Mortal' being the key-word.
He's always known that they'd have to step before the altar eventually, that all the others he's kissed weren't meant to (couldn't!) last. Brief, transient affairs compared to the promise of eternity. The time has come to tie the knot with the partner of his destiny…this is the only lasting relationship he is suited for.
In Korea, that shady world of disbelieving, love seemed always to be leaving.
Now the one leaving is he, the Hawk's flight has come to an end at last.
It feels good to belong again. Like someone's once told him, he 'doesn't do alone very well'. He needs to belong. Hardly a justification for his surrender, but it's what he tells the little voice that stirs and encourages him to fight for another minute. He then smothers it with the next breath. It's not rational, but after being alone for so long, he needs to belong again. He's always belonged to someone, been so many things…
Mom's Hawkeye, Dad's Hawkeye, Carlye's Hawkeye, Trapper's Hawkeye, B.J.'s Hawkeye...never ever simply 'Hawkeye'. Never his own.
He couldn't cope with being just himself and having himself all to himself. Not that he can be proud of what he has, body and mind being equally ruined by drink and loneliness.
Now ruined for good.
From somewhere he hears agitated, disembodied voices, growing fainter as his mind gradually dims.
"Hold on, sir", some paramedic shouts. "We'll soon have you out of there. Just stay calm."
It is cold inside the car, but his body is too numb to feel it. Breathing hurts, too, and he has to cough, feels the tightness in his chest and the warmth starting up his tracheae. There's the raspy, tell-tale gurgling sound. Hemoaspiration.