This piece of writing has been written but minutes after I saw the end of Valkyrie, and realised the relationship between Werner and Stauffenberg had such beautiful potential. So image my surprise when almost no one else on the interweb seemed to have agreed with me! So this little fic is just a bit of self indulgence, enjoy.
This is how Werner von Haeften dies.
He is shot in the back with a single bullet, fighting for what he knows was right. He is shot staring at the man he admires, despairs of, frustrates, amuses, helps and, ultimately, loves.
It wasn't meant to be this way, death rarely ever is the way you plan it after all. But in the last moment he took control, stared the Colonel dead in the eye and didn't look away.
There was regret in Werner's eyes. That's what Stauffenberg saw in his Lieutenants' last moment, regret and the uptight, if slightly weary loyalty that was Werner's trademark. It was a look Stauffenberg had seen before, but never with such breathtaking intensity. He wanted to say something, a thankyou maybe, for all the times he had reached out his hand and Werner had given him exactly what he needed. Be that a document, a bomb or a firm grasp of reality to steady him. Stauffenberg never told Werner how much he had needed him in these last months, days. Seconds.
There was sorrow in Stauffenberg's eye. That's what Werner saw in his own last moment, sorrow and that still-brave charisma that made the Lieutenants' skin tingle. He was please he would see it one, last time. The urge to salute was gone; instead Werner was desperate to just once say what he really felt. To say that life before the Colonel was dull, grey, and wrong. To say "I have seen you tired and failing and weak, I have seen you so ill I had to spoon-feed you and you threw up in my hat. I have seen you so openly vulnerable it breaks my heart. But you are still, in my mind, the greatest man I have ever known."
Yet in that last, brief second or two nothing was said. The men looked at each other and realised the other already knew. As always.
P.S if someone writes about the whole sick-in-hat scenario you can have my first-born son.
Really hope you enjoyed, please review so I know if this writing style works!