Mansion 2: chapter 24
"Sonic!" I heard the voice yell again, but this time much closer and much more familiar.
"Shadow." I muttered upon recognising the voice and started limping forward as fast as I could, almost sucessfully ignoring the pain that flared up in my leg. I couldn't wait to have my lover back in my arms again, to hold him, to kiss him, to make sure he was alright.
It was much sooner than I thought.
"Ugh!" Both of us grunted as I had barely seen him standing there in the darkness of these hallways and ended up colliding into him. A hedgehog with mostly black fur and dark clothes wasn't exactly someone you'd easily notice in the pitch blackness. We ended up falling down on the floor, which didn't feel all that good in my leg, but it was quickly forgotten when I laid my eyes on the hedgehog sitting in front of me.
"Shadow!" I yelped, relief soon taking me over when I laid my eyes upon him, but that feeling soon turned to worry.
"Are you okay?" I asked as it wasn't hard to notice that one of the duo blades were missing and instead held in his hand.
"Am I okay? I should be the one asking you that. Why are you covered in blood?!" Shadow shouted in concern, dropping the piece of metal and using his free hand to search for any wounds.
"I'm fine! Don't worry! This blood is someone else's." I answered grimly, which resulted in a relieved sigh on his part. He didn't seem so bothered with the 'This blood is someone else's' part unlike a normal person. So long as I was okay, it didn't seem like he cares about whatever faceless victim suffered a horrible fate.
After I got him out of that horrible place last time, doctors at the hospital suggested that he seek professional help, but he turned it down. Maybe it'd be a better idea to get him a shrink anyway.
His time in that mansion must've numbed him. I can't believe I didn't notice that before.
Shadow wrapped his arm around my neck in an embrace. I returned it, wrapping my arms around his waist and enjoying the moment that I could finally hold him in my arms again.
"What about you, though. Does your arm hurt?" I asked as I pulled away, my eyes trailing the blood that had poured from an open wound in his arm that used to be scar.
"It does... Alot... But it's not as heavy anymore. And I can move it somewhat normally." Shadow said, trying not to sound as bothered as he really was, but I knew the truth. He was just as worried about his bloodloss as I was.
"We need to find something to stop the bleeding with." I said as I looked around. I remembered seeing some bandages in the room I came from, but that wasn't a place I would return to. And not just because my newfound friend had just met with a terrible fate in there, but also because of what most likely still lingered inside.
I turned my attention to the sleeve of my jacket. If I wanted to stop the bleeding, I had to sacrifice this one similar to the last time we were in this situation. I ripped the sleeve of my left arm off where the stitches were supposed to keep the articles together and wrapped it around Shadow's arm, tying the ends of the makeshift bandage together.
Once I was done with that, Shadow took the blade he had dropped on the ground and handed it over to me. His whole arm shook with effort. It wasn't that it was so heavy, but it was because of how weakened his arm was.
I looked at him in slight confusion.
"I want you to protect yourself." He said.
I took the sharp piece of metal out of his hand and looked at it. The lower part of the blade was wrapped in a dirty, damp cloth. Apparently Shadow had been planning on giving it to me judging by the filthy cloth around it, which was supposed to act as a handle. It wasn't as nearly as long as his was, but it would do more than enough for defence. Maybe this time I can actually defend myself instead of relying on him.
"Thank you." I said, after which Shadow moved to sit closer to me and laid his head on my shoulder.
"Are you okay?" I asked, just to be sure there wasn't anything else bothering him. He looked exhausted. Understandably, of course, but I just wanted to make sure.
"Well.... My arm hurts, I'm tired and my knees are killing me. Should I go on?" Shadow answered as he sat up and stretched his legs painfully. It was only natural that his legs would hurt after all this walking around. First some psychopath broke his knees when he was a child in the hopes of having them grow in a wrong way, then he had been in a wheelchair for a long time while recovering before he was abducted again and brought here for whatever horrors that awaited him. He wasn't accostumed to walking around such a long distance yet.
Silently I cursed my broken leg. If I hadn't broken it during that cave in, I would've gladly carried him to anywhere we needed to go. But sadly that couldn't be done.
"It should be pretty late already. What time is it?" I asked as I looked back at my fiancée, who I knew should still have his watch judging by the fact he still wore the clothes he had the day he went missing.
He turned his left arm around with some difficulty as he tried to look at his clock, only to realise that neither one of the clock's hands were moving and that the glass was broken.
"No idea." He sighed and let his head drop on my shoulder once more, clearly tired. I can't blame him, I was feeling pretty exhausted myself.
"Come on, let's find a safe place to sleep." I said as I pushed myself up on my two feet without trying to let on that I was in any form of pain. I didn't want Shadow to worry.
I reached for him and grasped his upper arm to help him upright. I couldn't take his hand for fear of injuring that arm even more than it already was.
"There should be a safe spot for us to take a breather closeby." Shadow stated. I was hopeful to find this place and walked forward. Well, for as much as I could walk with one broken right leg.
"What's up with your leg?" Shadow asked, not at all fooled by my attempt at masking my pain.
I turned towards him with a slightly pained grimace as it obviously wasn't a good idea to walk on broken bones.
"I broke it."
I didn't need to tell Shadow when it happened because he could figure out himself it had happened when the ceiling came crumbling down on us. He grimaced, able to very accurately imagine what I must be feeling right now. He was, after all, forced to grow up with two broken ones of his own.
Chaos. And I'm having trouble walking around with just one.
"Do you think it'll be much farther?" I asked, keeping the low tone as I didn't want to risk having anything dangerous hearing me.
"I don't know. I hope not." Shadow responded as he closed anoter door. He had taken to sneakingly checking all the rooms we passed in order to find the nearest most suitable place to rest in.
Eventually we settled for a prison cell similar to the one we found ourselves in and used the decrepit, small, wooden bed to block the door while we stationed ourselves on the mattress on the floor.
Shadow immediatly curled up for as much as he could and an expression of utter relief made itself known on his features. After a whole day of walking on those painful legs of his, he could finally rest.
I released a sigh of content myself before I lied down next to him, the pain in my leg numbing. The bed was just barely fit for two people, but we made it work.
"You okay?" I asked, once more concerned for his health. Shadow nodded and hummed as reassurance I needn't worry for him.
There was a little bit of a silence afterwards as we simply enjoyed the peace and eachothers company.
"Never imagined I'd be stuck in a place like this again." My fiancée broke the silence. My head turned to face him, but I saw just his back. I can only imagine the look in his eyes as he stares at the cobblestone wall in front of him.
"Neither did I." I simply responded, trying to fight the feeling of guilt. It was no use to feel this way. That day I had tried everything in my power to stop them from taking him away from me, but I had still failed. Instead of wallowing in guilt, I had to concentrate on getting him bak home.
Back home where it'll be warm.
Back home where he could recover.
back home where those monsters could still get him.
I hadn't realised my eyes were closed until they snapped open.
Apparently I had been lost in thought as I hadn't noticed Shadow change position. He was now lying half on his side and half on his back with his head resting on my shoulder and his body seeking warmth with mine as the thin blanket provided little of it. His right arm, which still possessed that infernal blade, was far away from me. Even if he were to toss and turn in his sleep, the piece of unsanitary metal was too heavy to just swing absentmindedly in one's sleep.
I watched him as he slowly dozed off, his breathing becoming slower and calmer.
I couldn't take him home safely with me. Without a doubt it wouldn't take long for whatever sick bastard was behind this to take him away once more to force him through his sick experiments and fantasies, attempting to turn him into something that didn't even resemble a mobian anymore.
If I wanted Shadow to be safe, I had to put an end to this for good.