Guilty

Jensen climbed off the devil and stumbled backwards, still holding the blade. I watched him, horror rising, as he looked down at his hands.

“Jensen?” Jared called. “Why’d you stop? Kill that ba—ad monster!”

I nearly chuckled at Jared’s recovery, but I was too worried about Jensen. Would he really kill himself? What on Earth could he feel guilty about?

“It’s my fault,” he mumbled, turning the blade over. I began to regret giving it to him; if he used it to kill himself I didn’t know what I would do.

“What’s your fault, Jensen?” I called at him, trying to get him to talk. Maybe if he talked then he might calm down enough to realize how stupid he was acting. He shook his head.

“My fault,” he said again. If it had been coming out of anyone else’s lips it would have sounded like he was crazy, but he sounded so sure, and so horrified, that it was hard to listen to.

“What is?” I shouted at him, getting desperate. He seemed to be the only one not trapped against the wall by the devil, making him the only one still capable of killing the thing. Except when I thought about it, I found I could actually move my arms a little as well. Not as much as my legs, but still enough.

“I lost the Trumpet!” Jensen shouted, gripping the blade tightly and waving it in front of him. “It’s my fault Seymour couldn’t find it, my fault Seymour and Cassandra are dead!”

Suddenly everything was clear to me. That’s what he’d been having nightmares about, why he’d refused to talk to me. He was so ashamed and felt so guilty about it that he didn’t want anyone to know. He had kept it so bottled up that the devil had found the perfect target.

“It’s not your fault, no one blames you!” I shouted back at him, trying to get him to see reason before he did something irreversible. To my surprise, his eyes began to fill with tears as he stomped over where the monster still lay to stand in front me.

“You blame me!” he shouted. “You barely talk to me anymore!”

His words stunned me, and I was at a loss for words. Is that what he really thought? The look on his face was so tortured I felt like pulling him into my arms and telling him everything was going to be alright. But I couldn’t. I was still pinned to the wall and my arms didn’t move that much.

Then he drew one of the remaining throwing daggers, moving carefully so that the devil wouldn’t see, and put it in my hand. I gaped at him; was he bluffing? Or was he really wracked with grief and guilt but didn’t want to leave me undefended anyway? I didn’t know anymore.

He turned and walked away again, moving out of the way so I could throw the dagger. I hesitated, not entirely sure where to aim, or even if I could with only my lower arm free.

“It’s all my fault,” Jensen said again, drawing my attention back to him. He held the knife out, blade towards himself, and I realized he hadn’t been bluffing. He never would take it that far.

“Jensen,” I said, shocked.

“I’m so sorry,” he said, a sob choking him up. “Katey,” he said, this time in a pleading voice, and forced the blade into his gut with a cry.

“NO!” Jared shouted, trying to get free. I felt my eyes blur with tears as Jensen pulled the blade out and dropped it from weakened fingers then collapsed to his knees.

“Jensen!” I cried, then remembered that I still had a dagger in my hand. While the devil was still within throwing range, still lying on the ground with a happy expression on his face, I threw the knife as hard as I could.

It landed precisely where I had aimed, piercing the monster’s eye and plunging through to it’s brain. It shrieked for a long second, then died, it’s last shuddering breath loud enough to hear.

The instant it was dead I was free of the wall and I dropped to the floor, my knees threatening to buckle underneath me. A loud thud across from me alerted me that Jared was free as well, but I only had eyes for Jensen, who was swaying on his knees, eyes closed.

I sprinted to his side, kneeling in front of him and catching him before he could fall backwards.

“Hey, hey!” I cried, shaking him until his eyes opened again. He coughed, blood showing up on his lips, and my eyes widened in horror. “Jensen, you have to stay with us!”

Jared pushed me out of the way and lifted Jensen into his arms, then ran down the hall towards the stairs. I picked up as many weapons as I could find then hurried after him.

When I reached the car the trunk was already opened and Jared was getting Jensen into the backseat. After I had dumped my armload into the trunk and closed it again I hopped into the driver’s seat. I waited until Jared was in the car, then I sped away from the empty apartments, heading for where I knew the hospital was.

“Stay awake!” Jared shouted, turned in his seat so that he could watch Jensen. I glanced in the rearview mirror; Jensen looked so pale, the blood on his lips a stark contrast. I swallowed hard and pressed the gas pedal down harder.

We made it to the hospital in record time and after I parked and locked the car Jared carried Jensen into the emergency room, me right on his tail.

The emergency was chaotic, doctors and nurses working hard at all the trivial stuff the towns people had brought in, but they took one look at Jensen getting blood all over Jared’s shirt, and half of them dropped what they were doing.

Once Jensen was out of Jared’s arms and on a gurney, he was rushed out of sight. I shivered, watching him disappear through the OR doors. It could very well be the last time I saw him. I hugged myself tightly, trying to stop shaking.

I should have thrown the dagger sooner. If I had killed the devil before Jensen had time to use my knife, we wouldn’t be in this horrible situation. I hated hospitals. They were always so chaotic and impersonal. People died in hospitals, even when the doctors did everything they could for them.

Jared wrapped a strong arm around my shoulder and I leaned against him while he led me to a waiting room couch. I sank deep into the plush, if worn out, navy blue couch and leaned against Jared’s shoulder.

Jensen would be okay; he had to be okay. With the thought of losing him, I realized just how deep my feelings were for him. He wasn’t just a brother to me now. He was something more, something indefinable. I tried not to think about how high the chance was he wouldn’t pull through. I struggled against tears, blinking blurry eyes, and finally let out a shaky breath.

“He’s going to be fine,” Jared said, but he didn’t sound convinced. I nodded against his shoulders. He had to stay alive.

The End

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