Save Me a Place
Disclaimer: The television series The Magnificent Seven belongs to CBS, MGM, Triology Entertainment Group and The Mirisch Corp. No profit involved. Only thing that's mine is the poem at the end of the story.
Summary: And on this very day, the world stood still.
Comment: English is not my native tongue, so sorry in advance for spelling or grammar mistakes.
Feedback: Of course! Since this is my first story here, I would love to hear what you think.
He should have wondered about the fact that everything around him was dark. But instead he was slightly irritated by the fact that this "darkness" was not pitch black, but, in fact, a weird kind of grey. Shouldn't darkness be black? He held on to that thought for a while. It was a strange place. There was no warmth, but he wasn't cold either. It was like there was simply nothing there.
That wasn't all bad. No, he could get used to this. The quiet. It somehow felt like the short moment when one came out of a deep sleep but wasn't really awake yet. The moment when sleep was still lingering and the mind didn't have to face reality yet.
It was nice. Peaceful. Usually, that moment passed by pretty fast. But this time... it was longer. That was strange. But did he care? He certainly should, shouldn't he?
The sounds returned first.
Noise. What the hell was that noise? And why did it sound so far away? He tried to concentrate on the sounds, but he couldn't place them. It sounded a bit like the low rumble of a thunderstorm on the horizon, not yet there but already on its way. Hmmm... No. That was not it. Again he tried to figure it out, but it was just too fuzzy, too far away. It was almost as if he was under water. Was he under water?
Because now, slowly, the feeling in his hands returned. He carefully moved his right hand, surprised by the effort he had to put into that tiny movement. Maybe he was under water after all.
What was that underneath his fingers? Sand? Was he in... what was that word again... the desert? Yes, that was it. The word.
But no, that didn't make any sense. Why should he be in the desert?
Maybe he fell off his horse? That could be it.
He tried to move his legs. Nothing. They felt... numb. Cold. And they did not move when he told them to. That was not good. How was he supposed to get back to town if he couldn't move his legs? He tried to come up with a solution to that problem, but he couldn't hold on to those thoughts long enough. It was like they were flying away, taken by the wind, slipping through his fingers. Fingers.
Again he moved his hand, but all he felt was something that had to be sand. And... something else. Sticky. Wet.
So he wasn't in the desert. There weren't puddles in the desert, or where there?
So where was he?
Maybe it was time to take a look around. But was that a good idea? The rumbling sounds were still there, so maybe there actually was a thunderstorm. But why should he be lying in the sand when there was a thunderstorm ahead? Again he tried to understand it, but it was getting harder and harder to concentrate.
He took a deep breath - or rather, he tried to take a deep breath. Because the moment he tried, his breath hitched in his throat, taking him by surprise. He held his breath for a few seconds, feeling the panic inside him rise. This wasn't good. This was indeed very, very bad. He tried again, this time taking a few short breaths. Good. Good. That worked. Breathe. Alright.
The noise around him was getting louder. That thunderstorm had to be above him now. Damn. He had to get somewhere safe before it hit.
No feeling in legs. Right. Not good.
This time he actually tried to open his eyes.
Blinding, bright, painful light.
The pain in the back of his head felt like an explosion and again his breath caught in his throat. Damn! Damn it to hell!
Okay, try again.
Slowly, the blinding light turned into a color.
He tried to chase the blurr away by blinking rapidly - but to no avail. All he could make out was something blue above him.
But - was that the sky? No, that didn't make sense. He could still hear the roar of the thunder - even closer now - so the sky should be dark and full of angry clouds. Not bright blue. Something was defenitely wrong here.
Or was there? Because now the bright blue was slowly getting darker. Aha! Thunderstorm.
But no, that was not the reason. It took him a while to realise that his eyes had started closing by themselves. Again he blinked several times, but the blue spot above him was getting darker and darker around the edges.
Was something wrong with his eyes?
That was not good. How was he supposed to use his weapon if he couldn't see? This was getting worse and worse.
He tried to lift his hand to rub at his eyes, but soon gave up. He should have wondered about the fact that he didn't even have the strength to lift his hand and arm. But for some reason... he didn't. And then the thought was gone.
Still he wondered where he was. He tried to move his head, but all he could see was that shrinking spot of blue above him.
That was when he heard the voices.
The roaring thunder became louder and louder and now he could also hear screaming voices. Voices that seemed familiar. The sounds were beginning to sharpen, came closer, moved further away...
He had the nagging feeling that there was something going on around him that he should know about. Something he should remember. Again he tried to concentrate, but everything was hazy. Blurry. He couldn't grasp it. He took another breath, just lying there. Maybe this wasn't so bad after all. If there really was a thunderstorm, maybe he was somewhere safe. Because except for the puddle close to him, he was still dry. No drop of rain had touched him yet.
He felt a strange kind of calmness settle in. Whatever was going on around him, he certainly was not involved, otherwise he wouldn't be lying on the ground like this, now would he? So maybe he didn't have to care. If he just kept quiet...
The thunderstorm and the screaming voices got louder and louder around him and he felt a tiny flicker of worry. Maybe he should... no. They would call for him if they needed him. Right? Right.
He tried to move again and suddenly realised that the strange, cold numbness that was weighting down on his legs had risen to his back. Not good, not good!! Panic ripped through his hazy mind and for a tiny moment he knew exactly what was wrong, what had happened and what he had to do.
But then he heard the voices again and the moment passed by. The strange calmness returned, invading his mind like heavy, grey fog.
The voices seemd to be closer now and when he concentrated hard enough, he could feel the ground underneath his hands give just a little bit.
He knew that feeling. Had felt it a hundred times before.
A roof. He was not lying on the ground but on a rooftop. So this wasn' t sand. It was dust. Hmmm... But why should he be on a rooftop, if not to... so, no thunderstorm. Gunshots.
Again the voices spoke up, chasing the thought away. That made him angry and he tried to remember that thought. No use. It was like he couldn't concentrate on more than one thing at a time anymore. Damn. Where was he again?
Was that sand underneath his fingers?
The voices were louder now and closer. He counted several voices, at least five. Or maybe six. They were all talking at the same time, sounding like they were in a hurry. Or maybe in panic. Was there something wrong? Should he get up and ask them?
If possible, the voices turned even louder and now he felt something touching him. Ow, hey! Cut that out. Hurts.
But not a single word left his mouth. Instead, a nasty taste appeared in his throat out of nowhere and he gagged. He tried to catch his breath, but the awful taste wouldn't go away. Again somebody touched him. Almost shook him. Leave me alone!
The panic in those voices seemed to increase and were they fighting now? Couldn't they just go away and leave him alone?
No, the voices kept on screaming and fighting.
So, if they didn't want to leave him alone, maybe he could leave. Would that work?
He wanted to go back to the place he had been before. That grey thing. The peace and quiet. Yes, that was a good idea. Maybe he should go there. Because he was tired, damnit. Everything felt numb now... even his tongue.
Numb... and cold. In that grey place he hadn't felt cold. So maybe he should go back there. Yes. Yes, he would do that. No use staying here in the cold. If he got sick everyone would start fussing over him again. Expecially Nathan. And Chris.... Chris.
The fighting voices were already starting to fade, when one voice caught his attention. He blinked again, but all he could make out was a dark shadow hovering above him.
Shouting and cursing, fighting with someone. Maybe Buck? But why? Was something wrong? Had he done anything wrong? He couldn't remember. But maybe this wasn't about him. Maybe JD had done something stupid again. Yes, that could be it. Kid was still green.
The fight seemed to get more vicious because Chris almost screamed now. That was strange. And scary. Never heard Chris' voice like that before, he thought. Must be bad.
And then he heard one word. He couldn't understand it clearly, but that was not necessary. He knew that word. His name.
Repeated over and over again.
What was so important? It was so hard to concentrate. And by now he didn't have the strength or the will left in him to think about that. It couldn't be that important, now could it?
The shouting was already fading and Chris voice started to sound strange. Like he was sick. Was Chris sick? Maybe. He couldn't see clearly. Was too dark by now. And God, he was tired. So tired...
Chris sounded like he was choking.
Crying. He was crying.
A small, fading thought appeared in his mind.
Me. This really is about me. Something happened. And I...
For some reason, he was still calm. Still thinking about this strange, grey place he wanted to go back to.
And realisation dawned in him. So that was it. That place. Where he was going. And with that thought a deep feeling of relief settled over him. If that was the place, he could live with that. It wasn't so bad. Not what he had expected, but not bad either. So there was no need to worry, was there?
The voices were still talking frantically, but eventually they died down.
And then Vin heard himself sigh. No, he didn't just hear it, he felt it. It was like that sigh ran through his whole body, eventually chasing that numb, cold feeling away. Finally. Much better now.
He could still see that shadow hovering above him, but again the edges of his vision turned dark.
And this time, he didn't fight it, didn't try to blink it away.
Why should he? It was...
The moment he thought it, the voice talking to him suddenly was no longer numb and far away. Chris was still talking to him. Talking, no longer cursing. There was defeat in his voice. Sadness. That kind of calm sadness that you feel when something will happen anyway, no matter what you do.
And for a moment, Vin felt sorry for Chris. Maybe he should stay? Just for a little while longer? No. Not this time. He didn't know why he knew, he just did. And he could feel that Chris knew it too.
And when Chris spoke up again, his voice was rough, caught somewhere between a whisper and a strangled sob. Putting Vin's thoughts into words.
"...it's good. Shhh. It'll be okay. It's all good now."
And this time, the grey place was not grey anymore.
You rest easy
'cause I will be here
it's safe to close your eyes now
there's nothing left to fear.
No more battles to be won
it's all been said and done
so whatever may come
whatever you'll have to face
I'll see you soon
so save me a place.