Eragon lay against Saphira's side, panting with exhaustion and fatigue. Just a few feet away stood, Murtagh, holding Zar'roc...his legacy. Eragon knew he should have given it to him the moment he found out about Murtagh's father. He shouldn't have waited for his brother to rip the cursed sword from him so painfully.
Everything looked bleak. All around him he could hear the echoes of death, the crash of clashing metal and the screams of the dying. But he could only focus on the man that stood in front of him. His brother, and the source of so much of his anguish.
Saphira...he called with his mind. The injured dragon answered.
I am here. Her voice was as tired as his own. She was exhausted as he, but tense with waiting.
You know how I've felt…all this time. I just can't bear this…I don't want to see him in pain any longer.
You can hide nothing from me Eragon. I know what you would give up to save him.
Would...you hate me?
Never. Do what you must...
There, the decision was made and there was no going back on it. Struggling, Eragon heaved his body upright. Saphira shifted slightly to watch, but did nothing else.
"Murtagh..." he called. The elder spun, sneering at him. Eragon could see the disgust wasn't entirely feigned. Of course he was disgusted. Eragon wasn't even strong enough to stand against the new Rider who didn't even want to kill him.
"I may have spared you this time, but if you bother me I shall show you no mercy!" he snarled, dark eyes burning into him. Still Eragon persisted, even with the pain and exhaustion that swept through him.
"Murtagh...If...you were free of Galbatorix's words...would you come back to the Varden?" Come back to me? He pleaded silently. His knees were still in the dirt, begging him.
Silence was all that met his ears; but he knew that Murtagh could not speak, for that would be breaking his loathed oath. The hopeless look in those pair of hazel eyes was all the answer he required.
With a final effort, he threw himself at Murtagh and wrapped beaten trembling arms around him as tightly as he could.
Murtagh struggled, pushing him away with Zar'roc, but could not displace him.
"What are you doing!? Get off me!" he shouted. Before I have to kill you.
"I'm saving you," Eragon replied weakly from where he had buried his face in his brother's neck. A final statement made it's way from his lips, "Break his word." And it was done.
He released his magic, pouring it into Murtagh with as much force as he could muster. He heard a scream, but whether it was his or Murtagh's he couldn't tell.
Finally, it came to an end. He heard Saphira collapse behind him and felt the last flicker of his energy give out. Eragon's muscles went limp beneath him and he tumbled to the ground.
The last picture in his mind as he died was of Murtagh's blurry face, and something shiny and wet dripping onto his skin. A distant voice strained through the roar in his ears, asking a final question.
Silence for a moment, and then he answered.
Because I loved you.
A/N: Yes, he dies, because I'm just that evil. I've rewritten parts of this, though not enough to change it. It total crap before, now it's only partial crap…
Anyway, please review!