-May Angels Lead You In-

Because ten billion years' time is so fragile,

So ephemeral...

It arouses such a bittersweet,

Almost heartbreaking fondness…

"I'm tried of listening to your pointless drivel." In a second, my entire world I thought I knew shattered to pieces. There was a cock of a gun and an explosion molten metal tearing through my insides. Never, in the ten years I had served under King Hamdo had I ever experienced a gun shot wound, more or less by someone I'd considered a comrade in arms. I gripped the railing for support as the solid earth underneath me began to careen out of control. Tabul was mocking me, but I couldn't hear a single word he said. All I could think about was the pain; the blood seeping through my uniform and the god awful feeling of what I knew would hunt me down one day. I lost my grip on the railing and tumbled forward, down into one of the shafts, Tabul's cynical laugh following me into the darkness.

When I finally hit the bottom, I managed to get to my knees before vomiting blood all over the sleek interior of the shaft. I fell back, burning fire moving up and down my abdomen, while a cold numbness started working its way into the tips of my fingers.



I rubbed at the corner of my eyes as they began to water and sting. I would have kicked my own ass if I'd caught myself crying like this. Tears were a sign of weakness, and weakness in Helliwood was not tolerated. God, I was pathetic.

"Nabuca…don't die yet."

I groaned, gingerly clutching my abdomen.

"Find Shu…"

"And why the hell would I do that Boo?" I gasped, blood running down the side of my mouth.

"You wanted to go home too, right?"

I lay there in stunned silence. He was right. I would never make it home. I'd never see my mother again or act the way any normal fourteen year old boy should. If I didn't convince Shu to leave, I'd died here in this godforsaken hell hole without reason. I almost laughed at the irony, but my breathing was becoming shallow, depriving me of valuable oxygen.

"Thank you Boo." I managed to gasp before I began to haul myself through the shaft, hand over hand, leaving splashes of red streaks and hand prints the entire way.

What seemed like an eternity later, I managed to find the vent that lead to the barracks, letting my near lifeless body fall through the vent and onto the floor. By this point I barely even felt the impact. The pain working its way into my chest was doing its job as a damn good distraction. I dragged my limp legs to bars of the single prison holding the one person I needed for closure. I grasped the bars pulling myself into an upright position.

"Nabuca!" Before I even heard him, he was kneeling on the other side of the bars, trying to hold me up.

"Thought you could…use your stick." I heaved, passing the thick piece of wood to Shu. Before he could speak, I took a shaky breath as more blood traveled up my throat.

"Listen to me." I managed to gag, my own blood beginning to choke me, "You need to go back…" I paused, coughing blood onto the floor, black rimming the corner of my vision, "you need to…go…back to your own world." I grasped his coat sleeve, praying he could save me. I prayed that this could be just a horrible nightmare and that I'd wake up to see my mother out in the garden picking fresh food for breakfast.

"That's…where…you…" I took one last breath as the darkness tightened its final grasp on me, "…belong…"

Some how, before I lost consciousness and my heart stopped beating I knew, deep in my heart, that wherever I ended up, Boo, my mother, and everyone else I cared about would be waiting for me.

And that single thought deeply, truly scared me.

"…May angels lead you in, hear you me my friend…

On sleepless roads, the sleepless go…

May angels lead you in…"