I just hung there, head bobbing in defeat.

Trying my best to ignore the burning heat blazing in my lungs, pulsing through every inch of my aching limbs.

Man, I hate it when this happens, out on a patrol, ambushed, caught off guard by the enemy, cornered and beaten into a bloody pulp, how humiliating, I used to take twice as many Foot when younger, but I guess getting old is affecting me at last.

My arms are pulled painfully upwards, stretched mercilessly over my head, almost threatening to get popped out of their sockets, fixed to the shackles embedded into the wall, restraining my hands, keeping me from figuring out a way to bring them closer, to try and unlock them. I can feel the cold, uncomfortable tingle starting in my arms, all the way down to my sensitive sides skin, the bridges connecting my plastron and shell were starting with a cold, water like tingling feeling, dulling my senses; blood draining out, my fingertips turning cold, I can't feel them anymore.

I coughed; my sickness isn't making things better.

Damn sore throat, damn fever.

I grit my teeth a bit, barely grinding them and tried to struggle out of my chains, if only a little, but my shoulder sockets protest out brightly and painfully, alerting me that squirming too much will have them dislocated no doubt, and that wont work for my favor, on the contrary, it'll hinder my escape, giving my enemies the upper hand when I get myself immobile with my stupid, impatient movements.

How frustrating, I used to escape such captivity with such ease when younger.

I hate to admit it, but I guess I really am getting old, damn it.

My eyes feel dry and weary, barely focusing on anything; I can feel the tears building up, in the back of my eyes, helping me wet my eyeballs, lessening the uncomfortable, itching pain. A few extra tears gather at the corners of my half slit eyes, not yet thick enough to roll out, to trickle down my face and mix with my building sweat.

I feel so hot inside, I'm burning; the fever is picking up the pace, and I feel like a hot stake on the grill, it's getting harder to breath! The headache is throbbing against my tender brain, in the inside of my skull, repetitive and loud to my ears, demanding attention, refusing to be ignored. The terrible, irritating and maddening heat, itching in the pit of my dry throat is driving me insane! I need to quill it somehow, but I can't! Not with my arms slapped to the walls, yanked away with cold, hard links of steel, with my legs parted, fixed to the floor with similar links that felt like they weight a ton! Twitching my toes hurt like hell, and my ankles felt sore, I think I've gotten them bruised.

They hung me like a piece of stake in the middle of the seemingly-empty room, in what felt like an X position, keeping my arms and legs apart. Breathing was becoming harder and harder to do; heck, I can't even lift my head more than a few inches, it felt so heavy! I can't think, not with the loud thrumming against my brain, the exhaustion was building faster, harder; it's draining the life out of me.

I need to stay awake, but I'm so weary, I'm so exhausted.

I bit back a moan as I opened my eyes a bit, I tried to tale a look around, my surroundings were engulfed by pitch darkness, and I could see a few squiggly, unclear figures dancing in the patches of black and grey.

The bright, yellowish white, fluorescent light the enemy had placed atop of my head, was causing great heat against my unprotected head, burning against my bare scalp, and I felt the beads of sweat building, itchy, they slide down my warming skin uncomfortably. It was making my thirst grow needier, I would have so gone for a nice, cool glass of water right now, if I could.

I heard a loud, ear popping clatter, but no matter how much it thundered against my ears, my head felt too heavy, I couldn't look up, all I cold do was wince and bite back a loud groan.

Then it happened, and I heard it! A battle ensued, I can hear my brothers grunting and grouching at the idiot who caused the racket. Before I could start to try, and identify who was who, there was a roar, a loud, mighty roar, and I knew who it belonged to.

I couldn't see them, my head was too heavy, same with my eyelids too, they were too heavy to lift and prey open, they were clamped tight and heavy over my eyes, even my mouth hung open, refusing to close, and I felt my throat so dry! I was so thirsty, so tired, so sore all over! My tongue felt dry and blistered, as if I've been chewing on cactus, I was dead thirsty.

"Hang on, bro!" one of my brothers cried, then was muffled by the sound of blades clashing, "Wh- we'll get you out in a jiffy!" he grunted.

All I could do was will my eyes to open, in which they complied for merely a few seconds, before clamping shut again, against the bright lights; all I could see was the glittering and flashing of blades, sparkling dimly in the depths of darkness.

My eyes, dry and weary, watered, and my eyelids dropped, heavy. I muffled a pained groan when I twitched my hands, trying to free myself, to join or aid them, but it only caused a painful spasm in my arms, protesting loudly and warningly.

My scattered wounds, they were still fresh, they have sealed up earlier, but my constant struggle reopened them, the heat and pain were blazing through me, bleeding painfully, and it felt almost like I've been struck my thunder.

I wholeheartedly felt like crying, god that hurt!

"Don't move!" one of them cried in clear concern, "We'll get you out, just hang on!" he cried, almost pleadingly.

I so wanted to cry back at him, 'As if I can do anything else?' I wanted to complain, but, again, my head was having a heavy-metal concert, live! The pain was drumming, thumping and banging loudly in my ears, the loud, piercing and bright, clear sounds of weapons colliding and clashing, only added to the pain in my ears, it was unbearable!

I think that's when the pain was so intense, I felt a painful prickling inside my ears, and that painfully tickled my tear ducks, my eyes were drowning in tears, and my sweat started rolling heavy, drizzling on my skin like droplet from after rain. The tears have dampened my mask, gathering hotly over my skin, and I felt them rolling out and over my cheeks, the blurriness in my eyes never seizing.

What had become of me? I'm supposed to be stronger than this, I can't believe I let them down, my lazy ass, I'm such a good-for-nothing! I hate it when it happens, losing myself like that, getting all angry and frustrated.

I feel the pain prickling in my legs now, my ankles hurt, and I think I won't be walking on them for a while.

With a grunt, I tried to wriggle out of my prison, but it only makes the pain worse!

"Stop moving!" one of them cried, "For God's sake, stay still!" he chided.

I huffed a breath, wanting to complain, but before I did, someone landed besides me.

"I gotcha!" I felt the cold hands on my plastron, soft and gentle, but I was so hot, and he was so cold, they hurt! I groaned inwardly, trying to escape his concerned touch, "Oh god, you're burning!" he gasped.

I whimpered, it hurt too much, listening to his voice; the banging in my head was getting worse!

He shushed me, and I felt his hand caressing my face, "Stay with me bro, I'll get you out of here, okay?"

I nodded slowly, or tried to, anyway.

Again, I nodded weakly, faintly, but I weren't too sure if my head had nodded, if it had permitted enough motion for him to notice, my stiff neck made it feel like my head had not moved at all, I felt like a rusty old pipe, it make a creaking sensation in the base of my neck, I felt a joint popping with the movement. I felt his hand pressing on my forehead, brushing his cold touch across my hot skin, and I could feel my sweat gathering, drizzling down and dripping on the floor, and latching on to his hand.

"Not good," I heard him murmured, "Guys! We've got a problem!" he hollered.

I groaned, mentally begging him to shut up! Or at least, not to talk to damn loud!

"What's wrong?" one of them cried back amidst the chaos and grunts.

"He's got a terrible fever; we have to get him out of here, now!" he cried again.

I bit back a loud curse, I so wanted to kick him and shut him up! 'Keep the voice down, Goddamnit!'

He shushed me, his hands on my face, whipping away the sweat, "Hold on, this is going to hurt."

I never got the chance to answer, because all of a sudden, the cufflinks on my legs snapped, removing the support keeping my legs propped up, and I would have fallen to my knees, if it had not been for the links yanking on my wrists. I couldn't celebrate the relief, because soon, there was a swift movement, followed by the clank sound of the links breaking from over on my arms, and I felt the weight of the shackled, jerking so brightly, dropping their weight on my wrists, they complied to gravity and pulled my arms down, slamming against my hip, and I bit back a pained howl, suppressing the spasm and tears.

I think if I would have passed out at that moment, it would have been most merciful, but unfortunately, I didn't.

I whimpered, holding back a sob when my body fell forwards, slamming uncomfortably against one of my brothers, his arms wrapped around me tightly, protectively, for a moment, I heard the quick beating of his heart, my head pressed to his upper plastron; another set of hands went about unlocking the metallic links from around my tingling arms and legs.

For a very long, painful moment, I felt my senses awakening, upon the return of blood in my limbs, and it burned like hell!

I gasped, panting and allowing myself the small sobbing whimper, my body ached so badly!

I felt the arms around me tighten a little, and then a hand caressed my face, brushing away the tears.

My skin was burning, my legs hurt, my fingers and toes felt like jelly, and the throbbing, pounding sensation in my head was not making my muffled hearing, or swimming vision any better. I twitched my fingers, ignoring the icy cold, dulled ache in my fingertips, and moved them up, with all my might, weakly, touching the rim of my brother's shell.

For the sake of comfort, I could have cried, if only my eyes didn't feel so dry, despite the tears, and my legs didn't give up on me.

I felt two of them there, latching their arms around me, then moving my arms over their shoulders, and my muscled ached, protesting and screaming even brighter than before, smarting so furiously against my sensitive, abused nerves. God I so wanted to be unconscious at that moment! I felt so ashamed, breaking up into helpless sobs and moans of pain, it was too much!

I felt their hands, carrying me a little too roughly, too quickly, we've moved away, for a good few minutes, and I think we're out of whatever place I was trapped in, but the sound of blades clashing told me we're not out of the fry yet, we're still surrounded by the enemy, and having me here, dead weight, is completely not helping the matters any!

One of them, one of my brothers, he disappeared, I felt the other prop me down against a cool wall, we were shadowed, and the darkness kept dancing in my vision, I still couldn't tell where we were.

The cool wind that blew across my body sent a wild horde of prickled nerves in chaotic panic, spasm painfully again, I found the chill most welcomed, besides the pain they trigger, they made me feel a little more alive.

I smelt the scent of bricks and rooftop tiles, then the salty sea, I heard the sound of the waves crashing against giant stones, stones that are placed to stop them from breaking the dirt, and I could even taste the salt gathering hot and moist on my lips, teasing my wounds, licking my cuts and sending jolts of pain in my aching body. I fluttered my swimming vision just a bit, and I could see something shiny, just a far distance just beyond my sight.

I realized, at that moment, that we're probably near the docks.

How come I never noticed this before?

Oh yeah, I was busy moaning, whining and groaning, and kicking myself, complaining how my body ached.

'Stupid me.' I would have rolled my eyes, if only the feat weren't so painful.

With a grunt, I forced my hands to move, pushing them slowly away from around me, my flat, bruised palms pressing weakly against the cold bricks behind me, and I grit my teeth, ignoring the intense, burning pain, my breath picking up speed, my heart slamming in protest against the inside of my plastron, arguing and demanding rest, that I do no physical labor.

I paid it no mind, and continued pushing myself up.

My legs were numb for a moment, my ankles were tingling with a pins and needles kind of sensation, cold and hurtful! Same with my hands, the shackles did more than just stop the flow of blood, they also bruised them, scrapping the skin, if only faintly, I could easily feel up where the cold, hard metal had pressed against my skin, blocking the flow of blood from my veins.

"Stay down!" I heard one of my brothers cry, and then there was a pained howl, and the feeling of someone being tosses away past me, I stiffened, growing more cautious to my surroundings, if only faintly.

'Where- ?' I began, but my throat hurt.

"Damn it, sit down!" my brothers voice resurfaced again, coming up closer towards me.

'I want- to help!' I argued weakly, my voice low and croaked in my throat, barely audible.

"Just sit down, we'll handle this!" he chided again, then a swift breeze told me a round house kick was just commenced.

'But- !' I tried to protest, eyes barely open.

"Sit Down!" he ordered firmly, then there was a hand slapped to my shoulder, "Now!"

The pain was triggered, and I bit back a howl, falling down to my tail with a muffled whimper.

"Er- sorry!" he murmured apologetically, "Man, they really beat you up bad, didn't they?"

Even with the pain burning furiously through me, I sent him the best, worst sneering glare I could master.

"Uh, don't answer that." he said with a hint of sheepish laughter.

Again, there was a gust of cold, bone cracking wind, slapping my burning skin like lava! I felt them there, my brothers, surrounding me, defending me, and I bit back a few choice words. Man it was so embarrassing, laid flat on my ass with not even the ability to keep my eyes open, or to keep the breath in my lungs! Heat was still searing hotly inside of my, scorching my inside like flames, my skin bubbling and melting off like wax!

I slumped down in defeat, getting up will only make things worse, and I don't want them to have more trouble than they already got. Besides, there was now another dulling pain in my head, all my senses were shutting down, I couldn't feel anything, besides the heat, everything was being filtered out, disappearing. I sighed in mild relief, the numbness felt so welcomed!

I let my senses silences, ignoring the heat the best I could, and slowly, I drifted away.

Away from the pain, away from the noise, I was surrounded by mere heat and simple discomfort.

Fortunately, when I woke up again, I was safe at home, surrounded by my brothers, their relieved faces greeted me with love and concern, if not clear apprehension and worry, but their smiles never faltered, they only got wider.

"Welcome home," one of them greeted me, eyes caring, soft and gentle.

I smiled weakly, feeling the soft, cool sheets over and under me, the mattress keeping me comfortable.

"You really had us worried," my other brother soothed, his hand cupping my cheek, and his hand felt mildly warm compared to my cooling skin, "you've been out for three days." he informed.

I opened my eyes, my vision clearer and not swimming, not blurry, and though it still felt dry and hurt, I squint my eyes a bit, glancing at them, 'Sorry.' I breathed out weakly.

"Don't be, it wasn't your fault." My third brother sighed, his hand picking a warm, damp piece of cloth from my forehead, and the sound of it being dipped in water was clear, before it was smoothes, cold and flat, against my temple again.

I bit back a powerful shudder and groaned. God! Do they have any idea how good that felt?

"What matters is that you're back, you're getting better." one of them said, voice soft and kind.

"Yeah! You're probably tired, so get more sleep, okay?" another soothed, hand brushing a damp piece of cloth over my cheek and neck, absorbing the sweat that had gathered there.

I sighed, nodding slightly, and closing my eyes, I was so exhausted.

Sometimes, I wonder; why can't I keep my family safe, why is it everything I do ends into a complete chaos?

I just don't know.


A/N: I hate the ending, I couldn't think of anything better. Anyway, did you guess who it is, yet?