Breaks like this didn't happen every often, and Damon was more than happen to sit back and put his feet up. War takes a lot out of someone, not only physically, but it was mentally draining, too.

He expected a relaxing three days before he was pushed out into the front again. He expected to check mail from home, to hear all of the crazy stories his brother had for him. He expected that he was going to have a sneaky beer or even a game of basketball with the other troops in his command. He wanted to sneak around late and flirt with a couple of nurses and maybe even let it escalate.

He expected to have a good time.

Damon didn't get any of that.

The second he walked into base camp, he was told to report straight to the leading officer. They said it was important. They said it was about his brother and it was urgent.

Damon was unsure, but bolted for the tent, regardless.

He was told to sit down, and that made him feel darker inside. He was worried now, what was going on?

"Lieutenant Salvatore," General Groom started. "Damon… there's no easy to say this, but your brother and his missus have died. I'm so sorry."

Damon saw white. He felt like someone has just punched him in the gut. His legs buckled beneath him, and knew for certain that he was just about to pass out. This was never meant to happen, Stefan was meant to grow old and have a great life, a career and a family. Everyone expected Damon to be the one who died at a young age, especially because of the way he spent his teenage years. Even after his battle with drugs and partying and bad influences, Stefan was always there to help him up again, bail him out. He was the strong. Damon was not.

He barely heard General Groom shouting for help, shouting to get Damon's attention. Damon couldn't feel himself anymore. He felt detached and lonely. His parents died a few years back, and now that Stefan was dead, Damon was alone.

"No…" was all he whispered before the blackness consumed him.