Help me...

The water trickled everywhere, down his face, tracing the delicate features of his cheeks down to the dimple in his chin. It fell from his lashes, mingling with quiet tears.

I'm so cold...

He shivered, despite the heat of the water showering down upon him. It soaked his clothes, straight through to his skin. But he felt numb, his body shook.

Numb...like death...

He stared straight ahead, the constant drumming on his head a painful reminder he was still here while so many were not.

So many lost souls...

He never heard the footsteps outside shuffling near to him, seeking him out. Never heard the slight intake of breath that came when his brother took in the sight of him, or the soft echo of his name.

The water continued to rain down on him mockingly, threatening to take him under and drown him. His blood-soaked and muddied uniform, once a reassuring bright tropic blue, now a mere shadow and bleak reminder of events unfolded.

Help me...

A strong, muscular arm wrapped around his shoulders, drawing him closer to safety. A tight grip that promised never to let go. Never.

Don't let go...

At first he didn't react, frozen in time as he let the water slither through his hair like tentacles. Drifting, reaching, grasping for reasoning.

Why does this have to happen...

The hand gripped tighter for reassurance.

Don't question it – it will only drag you under...

The hand embraced his head, encouraging him to rest against his brother's shoulder. Slowly the pain began to ebb away from the surface.

The heat of the water finally started to register, the numbness melting away like snow under the sun.

It's going to be all right brother mine...I've got you...

He closed his eyes, floating in the heat of his brother's love. The shower had failed to warm him, but his brother's comforting hug had started to melt away the pain of a failed rescue, if only a little.

There they sat, hiding from the world under the bathroom shower, their clothes drenched in water and sorrow.

The pain never got easier to bear, but together they could prevent each other from drowning in it.