Richard looked perfectly pitiful. Earlier in the day they had been attacked by an old mage who proved to have great power. While she seemed to have a particular grudge against Cale (Something about wanting her beautiful blonde hair back), it was Richard who took the spell right to his chest.
It was a spell meant to kill an elf, he knew, but it would not kill him. Instead it just left him in pain. A lot of pain. So while Benny, Krunch and Pella were out looking for some way to reverse the spell, Cale stayed at camp with Richard who laid by the fire limply, fist clenched in pain.
Every once in a while Cale would glance up from the fire and he could see Richard screwing his eyes shut painfully as a particularly sharp wave of pain rolled over him. Cale bit his lip guiltily, knowing that if it wasn't for him, this never would have happened. Still, he resisted the urge to run around the fire and comfort the warlock.
An urge he gave in to when he heard Richard let out a small, pained hiss.
You see, throughout this whole ordeal, Richard hadn't made a sound. Even when he was in enough pain to make any other being writhe and scream, he was silent. The only thing he had done was collapse, unable to move without Krunch or Cale carrying him. So when Cale heard that hiss, he knew that he had to do something, anything he could to help.
He dashed around the fire and gently lifted the warlock's head into his lap.
"Cale..." He growled as the elf settled down.
"Shush," he replied, "It's my fault this happened..."
They were silent for awhile when another wave of pain ran through Richard's body and he groaned, speaking through clenched teeth, "Cale, it hurts..."
There was no emotion behind the words, but the admission broke the kind elf's heart. A tear slid down his cheek and he pushed back Richard's hood to reveal black hair matted with blood and dirt.
"I'm sorry," he said in a choked voice and Richard reached up to pull down his mask. His thin, white lips were curled into a frown and long green scars ran down his cheek.
"I'm so sorry..." Richard continued to glare when another wave of pain wracked him. This one was more powerful than any other. It was the kind of pain that wold have killed Cale or any being with nerve endings for that matter. He arched up and bit his lip so he would not scream. Cale wrapped his arms around the thin frame, nearly sobbing with guilt. Richard's head tucked easily into the crook of his neck and his body relaxed in the embrace as the wave passed.
Cale continued to hold him, silently crying, "I should have dodged it," he said shakily, "I should have been more careful. I should have taken it myself. It was meant for me after all. I-"
He yelped as Richard bit him. His fanged teeth sunk into Cale's pale neck and he gently lapped at the blood.
"Tell anyone about this," he said, "and I'll incinerate you again," he continued to lick at the wound he had inflicted. Cale's innocent elven blood tasted almost as good as a baby's and he enjoyed his impromptu snack as he spoke, "I knew what I was doing," lick, "I knew what spell she had cast and I knew I didn't have time to counter it," lick, "If I can, I'll keep you alive as long as I can," he continued to lick at Cale's pale neck, marred by the wound where he had bitten and a ragged scar where Richard had cauterized a fatal wound.
They were silent and Cale knew that this was a side of the warlock people rarely saw. And anyone who did see it was probably dead. The though made him gulp nervously. However, the feeling of Richard's body, solid and real in his arms, reminded him that the warlock was alive and brought him comfort. So he continued to hold him close as Richard drank his blood before the bleeding stopped.
Eventually Richard muttered something under his breath and Cale's ears flicked as he said, "What? What was that?"
"It seems the pain has stopped... my powers have returned."
Richard licked the bite again and replied, "I believe it was your blood. A spell made to kill an elf senses elf blood and is satisfied."
Cale'Anon knew that Richard expected to be released then. He didn't let go.
he pulled the warlock a little closer, "No... not yet... not now..."
"Cale... It's not like I'm going to run away. I just want to sit up," he wrapped his arms around the elf and chuckled, "I'm not going anywhere."
Reluctantly he released the warlock who, as promised, simply cracked his back before sitting next to Cale beside the dying fire. He put his mask and hood back on and looked at Cale when he said, "Thank you," Cale stared for a moment before he nodded with a smile.
A few moments later the others came through the underbrush. Benny, a scroll in her hand containing the method to break the curse, glanced at Richard, moving on his own and relighting the fire with his magic. Then she glanced at Cale who was trying to turn up his collar to hide the bite mark.
She smirked to herself and tossed the scroll into the fire. They didn't need it now. Wordlessly, she sat down and smiled the rest of the night. Their body language said what they did not and how could she not smirk when Cale kept "accidentally" touching the warlock's hand and brushing his shoulder. It was downright adorable!
Even Richard smiled under his mask because Cale was still alive. He was alive and Richard had not failed. Not this time.
A/N: I did this right after I got into LFG and I posted it because I hadn't seen any CalexRichard stories. That's it and that's all. I would LOVE a comment or two.