Hello all! Man, this fandom has really sucked me in O.o I've been writing like crazy lately! This story is actually a combination of three prompts from the LJ/Dreamwidth page: Nick poisoned, trapped, and clawed open. I really love beating on him if you couldn't tell ^.- Hope you all like it! :D
Disclaimer: I own nothing! =/
"You're an idiot."
"You may have mentioned that before."
"No, I mean you're really an idiot. A complete and total idiot. I'd call you a moron but it would be an insult to morons everywhere."
"Don't mention it." Monroe is pacing, looking up at the dark, dirt-lined walls in disgust. There's wooden beams vaulting the walls and ceilings and the metal railing below their feet is rusted from years of disuse. The whole tunnel smells like damp, cold earth and spongy moss and it's difficult to concentrate on anything else. Well, except for the fact that they're trapped. Yeah, it's kinda hard to get past that idea. The wolf inside him is thoroughly put out by that because wolves do not like to be caged in.
"You just had to go bother the witch…" Monroe mutters, still not facing Nick. He's so pissed at him right now he's pretty sure if he faces him for longer than a few seconds, he'll try to strangle him with his bare hands. It was Nick's fault they were stuck in this position in the first place. If he had just listened to him, they wouldn't be trapped in an abandoned mine shaft in the middle of the forest while being hunted by a witch who wanted nothing more than to make Nick her next meal.
Monroe had warned him about confronting the witch, he'd told him all the reasons he shouldn't do it and Nick had stubbornly ignored him and gone anyway, Monroe following irritably along behind him all the way. Witches couldn't be reasoned with, they weren't like the other Grimm creatures that still had a shred of humanity. Witches hunted Grimms like game animals and tended to gut, skin, and cook them like game animals as well. Grimms were their main source of food and Nick just happened to live right in the vicinity of one who had taken quite a liking to him. She'd already made two attempts on Nick this month alone and when the detective had gotten tired of it and decided to confront her, there was very little Monroe could do to stop him. Sure, he could incapacitate him or tie him to the bed but that wouldn't stop Nick; he'd find a way to get out into the woods and look for the witch no matter what Monroe did. The best thing he could do was just follow along after him and make sure he didn't get himself killed and eaten in the process.
That plan had quickly vanished when the witch unleashed a literal version of "I am woman, hear me roar" and tried to bring the forest down on top of them. During their attempted escape, Nick had managed to find the one soft spot over an abandoned mine shaft and tumbled through, Monroe falling through a step behind him. A fallen tree had partially obscured the opening but there was still enough light to see they were well and truly screwed. They had no idea where the tunnel let out and going out through the hole they'd fallen through was balancing right on the line of "out of the question" because Monroe could still smell the witch outside, her scent hovering just around the opening of the mine shaft.
"Think there's a way out?" Nick asked from behind him and Monroe had to physically grit his teeth to avoid snapping at him.
"Yes, Nick, I think there's a way out but I'm not sure how we're going to get to it. We have no idea how far into the mine we are and the opening could be that way," he said, pointing in one direction. "Or it could be that way," he pointed the other direction and let his hand fall bonelessly to his side. The smell of the witch combined with the wet, muddy smell of the tunnel made it nearly impossible to tell where fresh air was coming from. They could be in here for hours, even days, trying to find their way out, and it was all because Nick decided to go get bitchy with a witch. God, stupid Grimm! "You might as well make yourself comfortable, we're not going anywhere for a while," Monroe grumbled, sighing irritably.
"Damn, I should have brought a deck of cards," Nick mumbled softly. He was sitting against the wall of the tunnel, one knee drawn up to his chest, the other leg stretched out straight in front of him. His head was tilted back against the wall and his face was covered in dust and grime from their fall but otherwise he looked fine. Still, there was something in his voice, a clipped tightness that's usually indicative of pain that caused Monroe to finally turn around and look at him.
The blutbad frowns, unconsciously sniffing the air and trying to figure out if something was amiss. Still, the only thing he can smell is dirt and witch and damn is that frustrating. He takes a step closer to the detective on the ground, still sniffing the air cautiously. Then he notices it: copper, hot and sharp and metallic. Nick is bleeding.
Monroe is at his side instantly, all anger and irritation forgotten. He notices one of Nick's arms pressed tightly against one side, leather jacket pressed firmly against underlying material. Nick isn't looking at him, his eyes are turned upwards toward the hole they fell through, and in the dim light Monroe can see he's sweating a bit.
"Nick," he says his name firmly, trying to keep his voice calm and measured while he's silently panicking inside. The detective rolls his head down to look at him and his dark eyes are shadowed with pain. Monroe feels his concern double. "What happened?"
The younger man doesn't answer, he just pulls his jacket to the side slightly and Monroe can see blood, dark and slick and dripping, coating one side of his shirt. The blutbad jerks away instantly, his senses overpowered by the smell of Nick's blood and sharp, canine fangs stabbing at the insides of his mouth. His breathing is hard and hoarse for a minute as he struggles to control himself, his eyes flickering between brown and red and settling somewhere right in the middle to make them look amber. He clenches one hand on the dirt floor, sharp claws cutting painfully into his palms. The wolf inside is growling ferally, the scent of the Grimm's blood driving it over the edge. Its everything Monroe can do not to lose control right then and there. If Nick is bothered by any of this, he doesn't show it, he just keeps his back pressed against the wall and one arm pressed tightly against his bleeding side.
When Monroe is finally able to regain control of himself, he takes a few unsteady breaths and inches his way back toward Nick. The detective still hasn't moved and his skin seems paler than it had a moment before. His face is deceptively neutral but there are lines of pain around his eyes and Monroe vaguely wonders why Nick is trying to keep on a brave face in front of him. He grasps the edge of the jacket, wincing a bit as his fingers slip against the bloody material, and peels it back.
Nick's shirt is shredded along the right side and the amount of blood is alarming but Monroe can't tell where its coming from. He carefully lifts up the hem of Nick's shirt and pulls it over bloody skin to inspect to wound. There are three diagonal gashes along Nick's ribs, each one deep and and wide and bleeding heavily. Monroe curses softly. "Shit man, did she get you?"
Nick winces as the blutbad probes the wounds gently and gasps sharply. His face drains of what little color it had left. "I didn't think it was that bad…"
Monroe curses again, his fingers slick with blood as he measures the depth and length of each gash. He vaguely remembered the witch taking a swipe at Nick when they first found her but they had been too busy running for their lives to give it much thought after that. She'd hit her mark though, and a good one at that. Each gash was easily eight inches long and deep enough to nearly see the bone. Nick is losing a lot of blood but for once that's not Monroe's biggest concern at the moment. No, what he's worried about is the bitter, sulfuric smell that's emanating from the wound. That bitch had venom in her claws.
"Shit…shit…okay, you're going to be fine, alright?" Monroe isn't sure if he's trying to reassure himself or Nick. He knows for a fact that a witch's poison can be fatal and if the wound occurred when Monroe thinks it did, then the poison has been circulating through Nick's bloodstream for close to an hour. Sitting still is making it flood his system and settle in. Nick can apparently read the look on his face well enough to know that something is seriously wrong because he struggles to sit up, gripping Monroe's arm for support. Monroe frowns at him and plants a hand on his shoulder. "Whoa, whoa…what do you think you're doing?"
"We need to find a way out…" Nick gasps out, his voice tight and filtering through clenched teeth. He pushes against Monroe's hand and nearly pitches forward when the blutbad gives a little. Its only lightning fast reflexes that keep him from taking a face plant in the floor of the tunnel and Monroe props him back against the wall.
"Whoa…easy, take it easy…" Monroe mutters, keeping one hand on the injured Grimm's shoulder and the other pressed on the ground beside him in case he decides to fall forward again. Nick is breathing heavily and smell of sulfur is getting worse. "Dude, you can't even sit up on your own right now, let alone try to stand. Besides, we've got bigger problems to worry about." Namely the fact that Nick had not only been clawed open but poisoned as well and there was still a very pissed off, very hungry witch prowling around above their heads. Yeah, that about summed it up.
Monroe curses again softly and looks back up at the hole they'd fallen through. They'd fallen a good eight feet which meant the hole was easily two feet above Monroe's head. That was the quickest and most direct way out so it only seemed logical to try that first. The poison was working too fast for Nick to go wandering around through the tunnel and Monroe wasn't about to leave him alone to find a way out. So up seemed to be the way to go. Granted, he'd more than likely come face to face with a pissed, Grimm-seeking witch but he had to try.
He looks around the tunnel, trying to find something he can use to prop himself up high enough to reach the mouth of the hole. A few feet down from them a pile of rubble and broken tree blocks nearly half of the tunnel. If he could get a good-sized piece of the tree or even a big enough rock, he'd be able to reach the hole. Hesitantly, he lets go of Nick's shoulder and walks over to the pile, sifting through the chunks of dirt and twigs to get to the bigger pieces below. He manages to find a large chunk of broken wood and hefts it out of the pile of dirt, dragging it over to where they fell and propping it up below the hole.
He stands on it carefully, balanced precariously on the broken wood. It wobbles threateningly beneath him but holds his weight for the moment, allowing him to catch an outcropped root and hoist himself a little ways out. He looks around carefully, scanning the trees with sharp eyes. He can't see the witch but he can smell her, pungent and sickly sweet like garbage that's been left out in the sun. They have a break for the time being and he needs to get Nick out of there fast.
He drops back into tunnel and crouches down next to Nick. The younger man's eyes are flickering across the ceiling of the tunnel like he's watching shadows crawl across the wooden beams. There's a thin layer of sweat clinging to his face and he looks like he's struggling not to be sick.
"Nick?" Monroe cups his hand to the side of the younger man's neck, rousing him to alertness enough to look at him. Nick's skin is sweltering to the touch and he can feel the detective's pulse pounding madly against his palm. The poison is beginning to take effect and Nick doesn't have much more time to spare. "I'm going to help lift you out of the tunnel first, okay? Think you can do that?"
Nick nods hesitantly but the movement is jerky and uncoordinated and he immediately grips Monroe's arms to keep himself grounded. "Ugh…what's happening to me…?" He asks, swallowing thickly to keep from getting sick all over the blutbad's shirt.
"You're sick, man. That witch poisoned you when she clawed you." Monroe grabs a handful of Nick's jacket and pulls him forward, catching the younger man when he nearly falls over completely. He loops an arm around his waist and hoists Nick to his feet, keeping him pressed firmly to his side to keep him from falling. Nick's knees buckle and it nearly drops them both to ground but Monroe manages to catch them both before that can happen.
He drags him over to the chunk of tree he found and steps back up onto the flatter end, holding Nick in his arms. The detective is breathing hard and he can barely stand on his own; it looks like the very effort of staying conscious is trying to knock him back to the ground. He clings to Monroe tightly, pale hands surprisingly strong against his arm. He's ready but Monroe is afraid to let him go. Some small, animal part of his brain insists that he should be touching the younger man at all times. Still, they don't really have the luxury of a choice on their side and he sighs heavily. The blutbad positions Nick a little in front of him, keeping one arm around his waist to keep him from falling.
"Okay, on three, alright? One…two…three." He lifts Nick as high as he can and to his credit, Nick manages to catch a handful of solid earth on his first try. He pulls himself out of the hole, biting back a cry of pain as the rough terrain tears at his open wounds. Dirt and leaves stick to the bloody remains of his shirt and the gashes are throbbing relentlessly. Nick is struggling to keep his eyes open, gasping raggedly with each breath, and trying not to pass out while Monroe is still stuck in the tunnel.
Monroe can hear Nick gasping in pain from his position below the hole and the wolf inside of him is snarling to get out. He uses that strength, just for a minute, to grab the edge of the hole and pull himself up. Fresh waves of dirt fall beneath him and cling to his clothes, making his skin feel gritty and rough. He can still smell the dankness of the tunnel but more than that he can smell fresh air and Nick's blood and while he's relieved to be out of that mine shaft, he knows he can't relish the feeling for long.
Nick is only a few feet away from him, flat on his back and breathing heavily. He looks terrible, his skin a waxy grey color, and Monroe knows they need to get out of the forest and get him some help. Fast. He's on his knees instantly, crawling to Nick's side across the leaf covered forest floor.
But then she's there, one foot on top of Nick's chest and grinning triumphantly down at Monroe. He can smell the pungent, wet garbage smell that hangs around the witch and he's pretty sure he'd be gagging if it weren't for the growl building in his throat. She smiles sweetly down at him, her teeth jagged and sharp. "Thank you for the help. I thought I was going to have to dig him out all by myself."
Crap! The witch is back! Time for Monroe to protect his Grimm ^.-