This couldn't be it

Authors' Note:  Wow.  I never thought I'd actually do this.  Angst!  ::shudders::  Normally, I suck at that genre!  I just can't torture people, I feel so guilty afterwards!  Okies!  This is a short one.  I actually rather like it, believe it or not.  It's been in my head a while.  ::Smile::  I was just thinkin', yanno, everybody has Collins AFTER Angel's death, Collins BEFORE Angel's death…but nobody wrote anything about DURING Angel's death.  Like yanno, at the hospital while it was actually happening.  So I figured let's give it a try!  Read and Review if you'd like!

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This couldn't be it.

No.

No.  It couldn't.  I wouldn't allow it.  It can't.

God, why weren't my legs working?  Couldn't I go any faster?  I had to get there!!  I had to!!  He needs me, he can't go without me there with him!  I can't breathe.  Tears roll down my face and chin, onto my shirt.  He's probably so frightened, so scared, wondering where I am…

I can't feel my heart beating.  I can't feel any of my body.  Nothing.  My throat.  It's closed.  I need more air, I need to breathe, I need to be with my love.

The last need is by far the most important.

I finally reach the huge glass door, pulling open the handle with a surprising amount of strength.  My whole body is shaking.  I'm shaking, and sobbing, and I can't walk anymore.  I stumble into the main entrance.

The room was so small.

How did it get so small?

Oh, dear God, please!  Don't let it be too late, let me get there in time!!!  Don't take him from me!  I have to be by his side!  I have to comfort my little love, he has to know I'm here, I need to hold him…

The elevator won't open.  Why won't it open?

"Open!" I scream.

No one seems to hear.  Either that, or no one cares.

Why don't they care?!

The doors part.  I stumble in and hit frantically at the button for the 4th floor.  The doors close.  Not fast enough.

It's there that I collapse, sobbing hysterically, curled into a little ball, rocking back and forth.  My Angel.  No.  This can't be it.  Please still be alive!  Please don't go!  I need you!  Can't you see how much I need you, how much I love you?

I need to say it.  One more time.  I know I tell you everyday and every night before we fall asleep snuggled together…but I need to say it again!

The doors open.  I can't get up.  I don't have the strength.

My Angel.

So close.

The thought of my love practically lifts me itself as I fall out of the elevator.  I have to get there.  Now!  I need to hold him and kiss his hands and face and cradle him to me and tell him that it's okay, that I'm here now, that everything is going to be all right.

I'm such a liar.

Down the hall.  Faster!  Go faster!  This can't be happening…

His room.  Into his room.

Dear God…

Did I make it in time?!?!?!

He's there.  Trembling.  Shaking.  Cold, so cold! 

I need to be calm.  I can't be hysterical.  I'll frighten him!

I won't let ANYONE frighten him!

His head turns, just barely, his eyes meeting mine.  Those eyes.  Those eyes that had captured my heart forever the second that I gazed into them for the first time. 

As much as they can, they light up at my presence, filling with comfort and warmth.  I throw myself into the chair by the bed, grasping his hand, covering it with kisses, wrapping my arms around him and laying my head against his breast, my sobbing tears soaking his shirt.  He doesn't respond, only wrap his own arms around my head, running his fingers through the long dreadlocks, stroking my head, planting a small kiss into the top.

Thank God I made it!  Oh, God!

I sob, not able to stop, huge, hiccupped sobs of despair and sorrow.

"My Angel…"  I murmured into the soft fabric, clutching him close.  I keep my head buried securely in his shirt, kissing his hand over and over again, those hands which had so often caressed and soothed me.

My Angel.  My love.  My life.

My everything. 

It seems forever, an eternity before he whispers hoarsely, his voice strained.

"You came…"  his voice wavers and breaks off, his eyes glazed, the tears beginning to stream over the brims.

I lift my head up long enough to stare into the black pools.  I reach up, touching his face, fingers grazing against the soft caramel skin.  They drift down to his lips, grazing the red skin softly, and my heart, broken, worn, tired, throbs like stab wounds in my chest.

"Of course I came!"  I sob, pressing my forehead against his own, nuzzling my nose against his.  "Oh, God, my love, my Angel, how could you ever think I wouldn't come?!"  My voice is overtaken with a sob once again, and I break down once more, weeping.

He cradles me to him like a mother would do with her newborn child, rocking me back and forth.  Through his tear strained countenance, he whispers softly into my hair:

"I didn't…I didn't think you'd…you'd make it in time…"  His voice, strained, pained, breaks again. 

"Shhh…" I whisper, holding his trembling form to me, my fingers grazing his lips.  "It's okay…I'm here now, I'll protect you, I won't let anything hurt you!"

He nods, a peculiar, strangely contented smile on his face as we cling to one another, holding each other as close as possible, rocking one another back and forth.  He's slipping away, I can feel it.  Oh, God, my little love, my baby, don't leave me!  I love you so much…I…I can't live without you!  My eyes sting and I sob back into his shirt, then, using every last bit of strength I have in me, I sob:

"I love you, my little Angel…"

A moment, before he lifts my hysterical head up, smiling tenderly into it, stroking my hair and face.

"I love you too."

I nestle my head back down in another cry into his shirt, and we cling to each other again.  I'll keep my promise.  I won't leave.  I'll protect him.  I won't let anything hurt him.  Right up until the end.  I don't care how long it takes, how long I have to stay here by his side, I won't leave.  I won't leave!

Almost as if he's reading my mind, he kisses my forehead again, pulling me as close as his position can offer, his wavering whisper in my ear.

"Please don't leave…"

"Never," I cry, gently pressing my lips against his own dry, cracked ones.  "I swear…."

I won't leave.

I won't ever, ever leave.

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There ya go!  I decided to just let you assume that he dies soon afterwards…  ::sobs::  Ahhhh!  I need to make a happy fic with Collins and Angel.  Yanno.  Like my "Red Light, Green Light."  One where one or the other isn't already dead.  Okies!  ::Thinks really hard:: I promise promise promise that my next posted fic will be a smiley one!!!  Nice and chipper!  No death!  ::realizes exactly how hard it will be to make a A/C fic without death as a factor::  erm…what did I just get myself into?!?!?!?!?!?