-I will always be with you-

Rapid, strained breaths ravaged Phyn’s throat as she ran. Behind her she could still hear the sounds of pursuit.
 Members of house Draconian come to kill her for the shame she had brought on their house. Perhaps they were not on official business, many people had disliked her and the nature of the serpent.
 Even more people had hated the fact that she’d been able to be shielded and protected by her brother from what they claimed would have been ‘fair judgment’ for…. well, for her existence.
 She’d been injured already before this, deprived of sleep and pushed to her limits. The last of her strength was used for running, but it had been so long now, she felt. They never let her rest and they never would.
 All the time she could feel her brother worrying about her, but she didn’t want to let him know the full extent of how much trouble she was in. She didn’t want to pull him down with her.
 Phyn felt the sharp pain in her gut as the bullet pierced her, a red rose of pain and blood spreading in her side, dying the cobbles crimson red.
 She would have let Jörmungandr take over, but her body was already past exhaustion. There was nothing left to do.
 Gavin’s mind reached out to her, frantic and desperate. He felt her pain as real as if it were his own now. It must have been sudden for him, as she’d kept the extent of how worn out she’d been to herself, but now there was no strength left for that.
 Jörmungandr seemed so silent. There was only her and Gavin.
 She grew weaker with each moment, as the seconds just flew by, until finally she told him; This is when I die. Goodbye, my brother.

He knew she told the truth. Perhaps it was just his imagination, but he could already feel how the essence of her which resided in his mind was slowly being torn from him. And the pain of that loss was more than he could feel.
 No! Don’t say goodbye like we’ll never meet again he pleaded with her, feeling for the first time in his life a terror so deep it would soon tear him asunder.
 Tomorrow you won’t have the burden of this serpent, she tried to comfort, though she knew it wouldn’t help.
 What’s tomorrow without you? he asked, praying, hoping against all hope for a way to stop the inevitable. Their exchange taking place in a fraction of a second, conveyed in feelings and thoughts, moving faster than words ever could.
 From the moment Phyn had let him know just how bad things were, he had been crying. Perhaps he was screaming, he couldn’t tell.
 It felt like the world was collapsing in on itself.
 In the end, he really was more afraid of this than she was. Though this possibility had always existed in his mind, the pain of it being realised was much, much greater than he could have ever anticipated.
 He needed to be with her. Be at her side… even if he couldn’t save her, how could she die before him? They were one, weren’t they?
 Why was he going to be left alone?
 The sensation which came next was unpleasant. The sense of… fading. Everything about him becoming indistinct while at the same time… stronger. Somewhere else.

Even though he was in a terrible state his mind quickly took in a new scene.
 His singular desire, to be at her side, had been granted.
 Before him he saw a group of seven men. He recognised every single one of them, having trained five of them and served with the other two.
 One of them had been his right hand, before the guy had been promoted to the same rank as Gavin. One of his closest friends, they’d saved the life of each other countless times.
 The surprise on their faces was mixed with horror and something like shame.
 They all respected him. It wasn’t with him that they had an issue. In fact, in their mind, they’d be doing him a favour. This serpent was always causing him trouble, he’d have an easier life with her dead.
 None of them knew of the link between the two. It was a secret they did not share with others.
 They hesitated. Gavin did not.
 Before anyone of them could blink, he’d drawn his weapon and was at them in a charge.
 More blood stained the ground as he sliced open the throat of one and then stabbed another in the chest, kicking his body away to free his blade.
 His blue eyes were burning with a cold inferno and a worse bloodlust than even Jörmungandr could have ever displayed, yet he was still crying.
 But it was not for them.
 He felt nothing as he butchered the men who had once been his friends.

The last man left was the one who’d been closest to him. At this point Gavin had lost his sword, but his hands caught the man’s throat.
 Garbled words begged him for mercy, for forgiveness. Tried to promise he would leave and never hurt her again.
 His hands never stopped squeezing, not until he’d heard the snapping of bones and felt the thrashing stop.
 All the while his hands were trembling, but not from the act of killing. They were shaking from the fear of losing Phyn. It was all that existed in his mind.
 In the act of breaking the man’s neck they had fallen to the ground, but once the man was truly dead Gavin used his last strength to get to his hands and knees and half run, half crawl over to Phyn.
 With his unsteady hands he tore at cloth and worked to stem the bleeding, then, once he’d done what he could, he collapsed over her lap and cried for what felt like an eternity. Both of them bloodied and worn, but both of them alive and, most importantly, together.

-I will always be with you, ‘cause I love you. I love you to death-