Characters: Abby, Connor, Captain Strong, and three soldiers
A/N: I own nothing of "Primeval" that belongs to Impossible Pictures and I make no money from this, clearly. This was written ahead of schedule to help answer mostly everyone asking me, "What happened to Connor?" I'm glad to have written this so it is no longer in my head. To sum the story up, Captain Strong holds a grudge against Danny for an occurence back in Bosnia, 1995 and has joined forces with a Miss Preisner who wishes to sell the baby pyroraptors overseas and breed the others. Captain Strong's mission is to capture the baby raptors and kill Abby, Connor, and Danny so that they cannot find them again. Strong has his own agenda, however.
Summary: Is Connor willing to sacrifice everything to protect Abby from death?
Connor braced himself for the inevitable. Through his pain all Connor could do was glare defiantly at his attacker. His death would not mean the victory of Captain Strong! Even if he died, Captain Strong would fail at reaching Abby. Anxiously Connor awaited his death but the evil Captain seemed to be relishing each minute of torture that he was inflicting on the youth. The trigger was squeezed and the hammer came down.
But no bullet came fourth. Connor's body trembled in relief but immediately he tensed as Strong cocked the weapon once more. Was this another game of his? Connor doubted that Strong was above the psychological battle of Russian roulette. But as the hammer fell a second time with no action, Strong's face flushed in anger.
Cursing, Strong fired repeatedly at Connor but each time the weapon just clicked and no round was ignited. "Fuck!" Strong exclaimed as he took a step back. "Fucking piece of shit…!"
Connor could scarcely believe his fortune. Silently he prayed that if he should live through this he was going to try and start going to church again. Someone up there had to still love him! At that moment one of Strong's men raced into the room, exclaiming, "Sir! It's him! We've got to get out of here!"
"I'm busy!" Strong snarled as he levelled the gun at Connor's head. Pulling the trigger, Strong was disappointed to hear the infuriating click. "Damnit to Hell!"
"Captain, did you hear me?" The soldier edged nervously forward. He saw Connor leaning against the door and saw the look of defiance still gleaming in his young eyes. Glancing over at his companion, the soldier continued, "We got what we came for, now it's time for us to go!"
"Why the hell is this gun jamming?" Strong demanded, nearly screaming in his rage. He never ceased his attempt in murdering Connor. But each time the weapon refused to work.
The soldier was growing more and more nervous as his eyes kept leaping towards the main door. "Captain Strong, I beg of you Sir--"
Shaking his head, the soldier grabbed Strong's shoulder and hissed into his ear, "It won't do us any good if you wind up behind bars or dead! Forget the twat! Just look at him, he's fucking dying mate!"
For a moment Strong ceased his futile attempts at shooting Connor and instead regarded the youth. A wicked grin spread across Strong's lips and he stepped closer to Connor.
Still defiant as ever, Connor exclaimed in a hoarse voice, "You won't get away with this!"
Strong laughed and savagely kicked Connor until the youth was lifeless on the floor. He gleefully snarled, "That's what they all say, right up until they die!"
"Please Sir!" the soldier exclaimed as he tugged on Strong's shoulder. At last Strong turned from the bloody heap and fled the room.
From the other side of the door, Abby listened intently as the sound of the boots faded. Pressing her hand against the metal, Abby prayed that Connor had somehow survived the beating. "Connor! Please, answer me! Let me out of here! Please Connor!"
Abby's voice echoed like a person yelling through cupped hands into Connor's foggy state. He tried to find the strength to sit up but even the thought of it exhausted Connor. For the moment at least, his ravaged body was left in a state of numbness, and the pain went unnoticed. The ground was safe. Nothing could hurt him here. But in Connor's heart, he knew that he still had to free Abby and so the pain had to be faced.
"Abby," Connor groaned as he tried to push himself up. "I'm coming, Abby…" Dizziness shot into his head as he leaned against the door. Knowing that he didn't have much time left, Connor jabbed the key into the slot and twisted it. Almost immediately nausea spiralled into his stomach and forced him back to the cement. Coughing harshly, Connor fought the unconsciousness that was trying to claim him.
The voice now calling to him resembled that of Danny Quinn. But it couldn't be! Did this truly mean that he had died and was now meeting Danny in Heaven? Fearful that he had died, Connor forced open his eyes. All around him the room trembled and nothing seemed normal. Maybe he was in hell… A figure knelt before Connor and a hand pressed against his head, causing Connor to cry out suddenly. He lashed out at the person; thoughts of Strong returning flooded his mind.
"It's me Connor, it's Danny!" cried the man.
"But-- Strong, he said--" Connor blinked until the room started to stabilize. Sitting before him and looking nearly as pale as himself, was Danny. Disbelief washed over him and he stretched a hand out, whimpering, "You're alive!"
Danny gripped Connor's outstretched hand while placing his other hand on Connor's arm. He couldn't believe the amount of blood on Connor's face. "What did he do to you?" Danny asked in a choked whisper. For a quick moment, Danny forced his gaze elsewhere. Seeing Connor in this pitiful state only worsened the guilt he felt for being angry at him earlier. It was then that he heard Abby's pleas from the other side of the door.
"Please! Let me out of here!"
"Hold on a moment Abby," said Danny as he directed his attention back on Connor. "Can you move, mate?"
Pushing up with all his strength, Connor tried to sit up but the pain burned his sides and caused his vision to blur. He hardly recalled fainting but when he awoke, Danny had him in his arms. Connor tried to sit up again but more fire tore through him, this time diving into his heart. Jerking upwards, Connor cried out in pain. And though it grieved him to do so, Danny forced himself not to hear Connor's wails and safely moved him from the door.
Abby pushed open the door and rushed to Connor's side. She pushed back his bloodied hair and grasped his cheeks. "Connor, look at me, please, say something!"
"You're beautiful," was his response.
"Connor, you are so brave," Abby replied as she rubbed his cheek with her fingers. "Now you have to continue being brave, yeah?"
As long as he had Abby tenderly showering him with affection, Connor knew that he wouldn't disappoint her. A bloodied smile came to Connor's lips. "I'll try," was his only response.
"Abby," said Danny suddenly as he looked to the young woman. "Go get the truck and bring it as close as you can here. We're taking him to the hospital now."
"What about an ambulance?"
For a moment Danny said nothing, his expression betraying a sense of complete helplessness. His voice broke as he whispered, "We don't have that much time."
Abby's gaze dropped to Connor. The extent of his injury was far more than she could imagine and she knew that she was very close to losing her dearest friend. Touching Connor's cheek once more, Abby whispered, "You can make it Connor, I know you can."
Then Abby quit the room and raced for the truck. Back in the room, Danny let Connor rest once more on his back. Smoothening Connor's hair, Danny's eyes travelled along Connor's upper torso until he saw the blood stain on Connor's jacket. With the gentlest of care, Danny pushed back the clothing. But what he saw trailing upwards of the wound grieved Danny even more. The bruising was unusual for surface abrasions and it meant only one thing; internal bleeding.
Danny began undoing Connor's scarf and gently pulled it from around the man's neck. "I'm not giving up on you so don't you dare give up on me!"
As Danny pressed the cloth to the wound, Connor instantaneously writhed in agony. Gripping Danny's shoulder, Connor refused to let go but to this, Danny did not object. Just hearing that pitiful wailing was enough to drive guilty pain through Danny but he refused to ease up on the pressure. Connor couldn't die on him, not now! As Connor's sobs lessened, Danny began to gently scoop Connor into his arms but the youth was quick to reject.
"Danny… it hurts… put me down, put me down!" It seemed as though every bone in his body had been broken as the firestorm continued dragging him deeper into an inescapable chasm. Gripping Danny's jacket even tighter, Connor fought to look into his friend's eyes. "Leave me Danny, you must go!"
"You're out of your mind," said Danny, nearly choking on the laugh that escaped him. "How could you expect me to do that, eh?"
"Strong is going to torture Bluebird."
The news devastated the already broken man. But despite his urge to protect his beloved raptor, Danny shook his head and responded, "I'm taking care of you first."
"She's your family," Connor replied. This had been precisely the argument that had earlier made the two not want to speak to one another. But as Connor felt that his comic book of a life was coming to a close, he could harbour no anger towards his close friend. His smile was pained as Connor continued, "You must go to her and stop Strong before he does to her what he did to me. She's counting on you Danny. Go, save her."
"Not until you are safe," Danny whispered. He suddenly gripped Connor's hand and nearly sobbing, he said, "You are my best friend Connor. No one can replace you. I do love those raptors, but they are not my entire family. Forgive me Connor, I should have made that more clear to you and I am sorry that I hurt you with what I said."
"I forgive you," Connor said with a waning smile. "But I meant what I said, go and find Bluebird."
Ignoring the tears welling in his eyes, Danny replied, "I'm taking care of you first. Now come on, stay tough!" Danny made to pick Connor up once more but the youth suddenly pulled away, his cries sent a new wave of chills down Danny's spine.
"Please Danny, don't be an idiot. You know I'm dying!"
"You're not dying!"
"I am Danny, just admit it!"
"I refuse to!" Danny grasped Connor's chin with his hand and stared pleadingly into the youth's eyes. "Connor, you have survived everything that has been thrown at you! I know you're tough! You can beat this, don't give up now!"
By this point Connor had been reduced to sobs. He let Danny cradle him against his chest, both grateful for the companionship of a trusted friend, but also grieved in knowing that Danny was unwilling to leave him to die. Refusing to be comforted, Connor pleaded in a whimper, "Please Danny, I don't want to die but I can't stop what has happened. You have an opportunity to save other lives. You know they mean a lot to me as well. So just go, please--"
"I'm not going to lose you now!" Danny exclaimed. "Connor, I don't want to lose you. And forgive me for this… because you are my family and I love you, I am going to have to hurt you again." Without waiting for Connor's response, Danny lifted the youth and once more he found himself fighting to ignore Connor's pained cries as he rushed out of the room.
After meeting up with Danny, Abby led him to where she had parked the truck on the grass. Once they had Connor in the backseat, Danny slipped into the back and resumed his protective vigil. The tears that he was desperately trying to dry kept replacing themselves and the only comfort Danny found was in trying to talk to Connor.
"You're going to make it Connor," Abby stated from the driver's seat.
The tiring journey towards the hospital contained of little else. As Connor's energy lessened, he became less able to talk until at last Danny silenced him. Connor was grateful that at least one of his friends had stayed in the back to keep him warm. The blood-loss had turned a relatively warm environment into something like being in a freezer. He turned his head into Danny's shoulder and tried to take in his warmth.
"Three miles!" Abby suddenly exclaimed. She anxiously looked back at Connor and saw that his eyes were barely open. Forcing herself to look ahead, Abby pleaded through tears, "You can make it Connor, just three more miles and then you'll get all the help you need."
"I've got nothing left," Connor whimpered, his voice trembling with pain. "I'm afraid I'm not Han Solo after all." Tears began rolling down Connor's face and he said almost ruefully, "I don't even make a very good R2-D2."
"That's nonsense Connor," said Danny quietly as he looked down at his brother. "You've always been a Wedge Antilles to me."
"Wedge?" Connor inquired, his brows furrowing some in confusion. "But… how?"
With a knowing smile, Danny said, "Antilles was a hero through and through, just like you. And, just as you are, Wedge is dedicated to the good and fiercely loyal to his mates. Wedge cares about everyone and often risks his life to ensure the survival of others." Connor beamed through his tears, hardly believing that Danny would think so highly of him.
Danny continued, "Whenever the chips are down, you are always there, willing to help. There is nothing too difficult for either of you. And like him, Connor, you are also the most underrated, most irreplaceable friend on our team. I hope you know how important you are and how none of us could have gotten this far if it hadn't been for you."
Connor's heart swelled with pride. Gripping Danny's jacket, Connor whispered, "I would do it all over again, brother."
Slowly Connor's head sank against Danny's shoulder until he slumped completely in the man's arms. Fright overcame Danny and he immediately pulled Connor up some. But the youth did not respond. His grip lessened on the coat until finally Connor's hand fell limp in his lap. Danny shook Connor, urging him awake with frantic calls. None of this Connor answered.
"Please, don't go," Danny pleaded as he pressed his fingers against Connor's neck. He held his breath as he waited for a pulse. But there was none. Shaking his head, Danny tried to clear his mind. "No, no, no! Damnit I refuse to believe--" Once more Danny felt for a sign of life, this time checking Connor's wrist.
But Connor was gone.
The truck pulled alongside an ambulance and Abby leapt out of her seat, setting off immediately to grab a doctor. In the backseat, a stunned Danny held his lifeless brother tight against his chest. Danny pressed his forehead against Connor's and sighed deeply. But at last the sickening realisation sank in and Danny broke down completely, weeping bitterly over his friend. His grief was inconsolable.
Outside, Abby's cries were growing louder as nurses with a stretcher raced towards the truck. But Danny hardly noticed them. Words seemed to whisper into his soul, "In my weakness you can make me strong again." Danny opened his eyes and regarded Connor's deceased form. He repeated the words to himself, and then embraced his dear brother. "I'm never going to give up on you brother."