It happened so fast.

Fighting, moving to kill, fury pulsing through his veins in place of blood, and then just like that it – stopped. He felt himself shudder, his left arm going limp, feeling the sword slide into his belly and burst through his back, buried hilt deep, Dior's body locked to his, snarling.

"Die, Kinslayer." The Silmaril glittered around Dior's neck, tempting, tantalizing, teasing. Dior jerked the sword up, baring his teeth as the blade sliced deeper into Tyelko's gut, scraping his backbone. Tyelko's breath caught and he cried out, feeling the blood begin to flow and knowing his death as Dior stepped back and slid his bloody weapon out of the wound and he staggered, watching his enemy's mouth smile with gloating victory as he spat on the bloody ground between them.

"No," he heard himself say, a savage denial through bloodied lips, and then he lunged forward, sword sweeping inevitably down on his opponent, gloating too early, and watched with fierce, bloodthirsty satisfaction as his eyes filled with raw fear a moment before the blow slammed into his shoulder and with all his weight behind it cut deep into his body. Dior wrenched away and Tyelko staggered again as the other Elf stumbled back two steps, sword still buried in the gushing wound, and fell. A sigh burst through the caverns, of mourning and of fury.

"Tyelko!" Carnistir, was fighting toward him and he turned, stretching out a hand, despite the pain, but two twangs sounded in unison and a moment later he felt the nearly simultaneous pain as arrows stabbed through his skin and plunged deeper, the force spinning him as he fell, tasting blood in his throat, back arching, eyes drawn upward, as to the stars.

"No," he said again, trying to rise, clawing to his hands and knees and struggling, seeing the glitter of his father's jewels, just out of reach, Dior's eyes staring blankly at nothing. Moryo was next to him, holding him, catching him suddenly, his face anxious for once, pain in his eyes as he looked down and Tyelko knew what he saw. His brother, dying.

"Don't move," he whispered, starting to tear something from his sleeve, but another bow snapped and Moryo stopped halfway through the motion, eyes glazing as the arrowhead just emerged through his chest, gurgling once before slumping sideways. Tyelko fell with him, sprawling on his back, his weight driving the arrows deeper inside him, but it hardly mattered. His head lolled back and he stared up at the ceiling, gasping for air. Everything was very quiet suddenly, and still. He clung to life even as he felt it slipping away.

There was a roaring in his ears. The Silmarils glittered at the edge of his vision. He tried to breathe through lungs that didn't seem to work right anymore; coughed and spat up blood that gurgled in his throat. He laid a hand to his belly opened by Dior's blade and felt his own warm blood on his fingers. Dying. He could not be dying. He would not die. He clung to the scraps of his life with the same stubbornness dying he'd had since taking his first breath. They would not take his life from him. He fought it with every laboring breath, the battle distant and far away from the fight he waged against his body, not allowing oblivion to have a hold on him.

Someone was walking across. He heard the voice, fuzzily in his ears, as he gasped for breath. "This one's still alive."

The battle was elsewhere now. He tried to focus, tried to move. The edges of his being felt fuzzy. He choked on blood and spasmed, coughing. A foot nudged him and he heard the disgust in the voice. "It's one of them."

"What are you waiting for, then? Kill him." The other voice sounded disinterested. He could hear them moving away, looking for – Dior. He focused on breathing. He would survive this. He would survive.

"Lend me your blade," said the first voice, and a moment later someone knelt next to him, a light hand finding his faltering heartbeat, the face fierce with hatred meeting his eyes. "Look at me," he said, and then raised the knife and as Tyelko struggled to take another breath, stabbed it down. As quick as that, he was done. He stood, leaving the blade planted where he had buried it, and he could feel his heart faltering, trying to beat still. Then the Elf spat on his face and moved away without another word, murmuring something to his companion that Tyelko lost. He couldn't move, could feel his breathing faltering and failing, and fought just to cling to his life. His brothers would come. And they had fought well. Surely someone would find the Silmaril and take it back. Their sacrifice could not be for nothing. He tried to hold on.

But he wasn't strong enough. If only he could have touched the Silmaril before he died. If only. It might have given him the strength he needed now…he tried to move, but his body no longer obeyed his commands. He realized, slowly, that his heart had ceased to beat. There was utter silence, screams distant, nothing. Beat, he commanded his heart, Live!

His breathing failed. He could feel his body shutting down, going numb, fading. The darkness was closing in. He tried to take a breath, but even his lungs no longer obeyed. No. no, I will not die. I will not –

"Ata," he gasped, a final plea, "Eru," before the dark consumed him and everything was gone, his last thought fading with his life.