A/N: Enjolras is of course Ramin Karimloo and Eponine is Samantha Barks. O2 Arena 25th Anniversary Cast!
With a little fall of rain Éponine died. The first of many deaths for the men and women of the ABC Cafe.
Or did she die?
"'Ponine. You can't be gone. You can't be gone." Marius wept, cradling her in his arms. "You can't be gone, 'Ponine. Please."
"Marius," Enjolras laid his hand on his friend's shoulder. "Come away from her; let me take her body away."
"No!" Marius snapped, covering her body with his own, shielding her from Enjolras's gaze. "You can't take her! Eponine please."
"She's gone, Marius."
"Be a man Marius!" Enjolras retorted firmly, pulling Marius' arms from her body. "Many more people will die in this war, you have to take the loss in stride and let it give you courage to fight."
"She's still warm. She's not dead."
Enjolras pulled her limp body away from Marius, "Let me take her Marius."
"Eponine." He cried out as Enjolras carried her from the room.
Enjolras carried her body away to a smaller room in the back of the ABC Cafe, it was the safest place that he knew of to stow the deceased. He hadn't really expected to need to stow the dead yet.
She looked so peaceful, finally at rest with the world. He knew she had experienced a hard life. Who wouldn't have a difficult life with parents like the Thénardiers'? But she was dealt a troubled lot in life. Marius and his blindness had been her chief ordeal.
And now she was at rest.
Enjolras glanced down at the body in his arms. Had he heard her speak? Impossible!
Warily he laid her on the table in the room, "Éponine?"
He must have imagined the sound. He had heard that bodies make noises after death. But so soon?
Enjolras had just begun to walk away when he heard another whimper, "Mar-"
"I am not delusional!" Enjolras gasped, shutting the door quietly before returning to her side. "You are not dead?"
"Marius?" She breathed, though he did not see her chest rising and falling.
"No, it is Enjolras." He smoothed a hand over her dark locks, brushing a thumb over her blood smeared cheek.
She gasped a little, her eyes fluttering. "I am dead, monsieur?" Her voice was weak; there was no power in it like he knew her for.
"No. No. You are with the living."
"Marius?" She took another sharp breath, her mouth slacking open slightly.
Enjolras left her side, searching the room for some sort of cloth to bind her head. Finding none he tugged his cravat from his neck. "I am going to lift you up now." He propped her up, binding her head with the cravat as best her could. From what he could tell she had been grazed by a bullet.
"Where is he?"
"You're going to be fine Éponine," He spoke softly, taking her hand in his. He wasn't sure if she would live much longer, or if she was just dragging out her moments on earth, hoping for Marius to love her just a little longer.
"Enjolras. Marius?" Weakly her eyes drew open, "Let me die if he will not love me."
"No, Éponine! You will live," Enjolras hissed, shaking her shoulders. "You must live. Prove thay the world is wrong. Prove that you do not need Marius to be alive."
"I can't." She shook her head, a tear trailing down her cheek. "Why live?"
"This is not the Éponine I know. The Éponine I know is strong and brave. She does not let her unrequited love interrupt her living. She is courageous and loyal. She is both stiff and gentle at the same time. She is beautiful."
She reached her hand out to stroke his cheek. He couldn't believe how feather light her touch was. How cold she felt.
He drew her up, cradling her in his strong arms. "Éponine Thénardier I will not let you die in such an undignified way. Pining after a fool."
"Marius is not a fool."
"He is when he does not see the angel that has always been before him."
Éponine laughed weakly, "Your books have filled you with childish illusions of beauty and love."
"My books have taught me what I want," Enjolras corrected, rocking her in his arms. "I want a woman who can hold her own in a literary argument and can keep her liquor down like any man."
"The lucky woman."
"I'll tell you a secret," She nodded at his words, opening her eyes wider. "I thought that would make you pay attention."
"I do not think she knows that I care for her."
"She is here at the Cafe?"
"Yes." He spoke softly, his fingers stroking her arms. "She is here this very night."
"Is she pretty?" Her words came out slurred.
"A little worn around the edges, but a diamond is just a rock before it's polished." He chuckled softly, starring down at the delirious girl in his arms.
"We are all rough diamonds here," She stared up at Enjolras, seeing adoration in his eyes. "Go on Enjolras. Is her hair like golden rays?"
"Her hair is like the darkest ale. It is a beautiful dark colour." He knew that she was the only girl with chocolate hair in the Cafe. There were reds and golds, and blacks – but she was one of a kind.
"Who is it Enjolras?" Her head lolled slightly, she whimpered in pain, sucking in a sharp breath.
"You." He leaned down to capture her lips, savouring her tender lips.
She was startled by the kiss, unable to return it directly. She was weak, but not weak enough to ignore his mouth. Mustering strength she returned the kiss, moving her mouth against his.
It was a short lived kiss, before she was gasping for air.
"You are in love with me?" She murmured looking more alive than she had since returning to the Cafe.
"Yes you! Sweet, sweet Éponine." He stroked her cheek, staring down at her with love. "But do not feel obligated to return the emotions when you know you love Marius. I'd trade my love for your happiness."
"Yes." He nodded, thinking that she agreed with his opinion. "I am so tired of walking all night alone."
A smile lit his face, "You will never be alone again." He kissed her lips softly, "After the battle I will return and we will leave together."
"Be brave Enjolras." She murmured as he laid her back on the table.
"Stay alive, for me."
"For you." He smiled before rushing from the room; he sang a new song for freedom and for love.
But nothing good would come from the battle. No freedom and no love for either Enjolras or Éponine.
He died protecting Marius. He fought as a brave soldier, among his friends and brothers.
She died alone. Waiting for the man who had always been there for her; to listen and to hold her.
But in the end she died on her on.
Only in her death did she realise why Marius was not hers. He was meant to live, to love Cosette for the rest of their lives.
While Enjolras and she were meant to live forevermore; walking, hand-in-hand, on the silver pavements and by the misty rivers.