A/N: I've always been struck with the end of J O'Barr's graphic novel, once Eric has finished with his retribution. What's going through his mind when he pulls the trigger? What does he see and feel as he walks through the cemetery?
Quotations in italics sourced from the graphic novel The Crow, by J O'Barr.
Disclaimer: I do not own The Crow, Eric or Shelly. These belong to J O'Barr.
Snow blankets the ground, muffling the sound that his boots make when they break through the thin crust. Eric is tired and the cold eats into his core, singeing into the threnody, that courses through his body, that eternal undying ache that screams in his veins.
Hello, Shelly. It's over, baby. I'm coming home.
The sky is the colour of sorrow, its leaden belly hanging low, filled with the promise of more snow. Occasional small flakes are whipped by a biting wind that stirs the bare branches of the oaks, the wood chiming like bone on bone, a dry sound. Empty, like Eric, as he finds his way to the twin markers with unerring ease.
The blank-eyed stares of stone angels follow his passage. His shadow is fuzzy in the weak dawn that slices through a break in the cover. The golden sunlight is milky this morning, pale and washed out. The words engraved on the markers don't mean a thing. It's what they represent that means the world to him.
By all rights, his place is here, by her side. He is weary unto death, no longer even bothered by the cold as he sinks down to lean against the stone, the weight of the revolver he carries strangely comforting as he watches the sun slide into murkiness.
It will snow again. Soon.
The wind playing over his much-scarred skin recalls a ghost of the warmth that he felt with her. Her laughter still rings in his ears, the taste of her lips and the faint smell of cloves. The warmth is gone, replaced by an exhaustion that drives him to desire only one thing now – to rest in her arms.
He looks up to see a single black bird flap lazily from its perch, wings driving it across the grey sky.
Remember when you said "Mine?" and I said "Forever."
You said "Only forever?"
It's forever, now.
The gun's report cracks and echoes through the near-deserted graveyard, disturbing the crows. As one, they fly up into sky, to wheel and caw before settling half a mile further in the boughs of a dead oak.