I do not own CW's Beauty and the Beast or any of the characters.
Playlist: Eva Cassidy – Fields of Gold (you have to find this song on YouTube and listen to it while you read…Trust me.)
"Catherine!" Vincent yelled, pouring his emotions and heart-wrenching pain into her name. He tried the handle but the door was locked. He pulled on it again and again in sheer desperation, needing to get her out of the car. "Catherine!"
He had to save her, to protect her, to make her whole. He could feel his blood boiling, his thoughts swimming, his reason leaving. He yanked frantically one more time before the Beast took over.
The Beast grasped the handle and heaved the entire door over his head. He roared in agony before thrusting it away from him. He leaned into the car and gingerly unbuckled Catherine's seat belt. With a gentleness belying his beastly state, he lifted her out of the car and cradled her in the strength of his arms.
Catherine's breathing was shallow. The Beast looked around for options. They were running out of time.
He could feel Catherine's life ebbing away, her warm blood soaking the sleeve of his tuxedo jacket. He gently rocked her in his arms, soothing her with the motion of his body. He leaned his head down to hers, smelled her warm scent, listened as her heartbeat began to slow.
A set of headlights in the distance penetrated the Beast's awareness. He looked up at the oncoming car. This was her only hope. Her only option. She needed medical care and there was nothing he could do for her. Nothing.
The Beast carefully laid her down on the ground. He tenderly placed her head on the pavement, smoothing her hair off of her face. He looked up and into the high beams of the approaching vehicle. It slowed before coming to a stop in front of the mangled wreckage of the other two cars. He didn't have much time.
He touched Catherine once more with gentle hands, ensuring himself that she was still alive. He dipped his head, heard her breath and touched her face before turning and running away. Pain ripped through him as he left her. He couldn't quell the ache deep within. Each throb of his heart pounded out her name inside of him: "Catherine! Catherine!" There was nothing he could do.
The Beast ran into the bushes that lined the side of the road. He hunched over and waited there, crouching, watching.
"Heather," Evan yelled towards the idling car. He quickly shed his suit jacket and rolled up the sleeves of his white dress shirt. "I need you!"
Heather sprang from the car and ran to Evan. He was leaning over her sister's unconscious body. Evan explained Catherine's situation to Heather. She didn't understand a word he was saying. He was speaking quickly and using medical terms she had never heard before. She noticed the expanding puddle of blood forming under her sister's lifeless body. Her breath hitched as she implored Evan, "Get her to a hospital!"
"She won't make it to the hospital. Her lung is collapsing. I need you to go back to the car, get that flask of vodka that you had. I need a knife and a glove and a rubber band," Evan ordered, taking charge of the situation. Heather ran to the car, desperate to get the supplies he needed.
Evan wouldn't let Catherine die. Not here, not right in front of him. There was still time. He looked down at Catherine and whispered, soothingly, "You're going to be alright, OK? Just stay with me."
"Evan, I can't find the knife!" Heather shouted from the car.
"What?" He called back, his eyes focused on Catherine. "Heather! Hurry up!"
"The knife! It's not here. Evan!" Heather's voice was growing increasingly shrill with every word. "The knife!"
"Look in the first aid kit!" Evan screamed back to her, frantic to help Catherine. In this moment, he felt so powerless. He smoothed her hair from her face and put pressure on her wound. He looked up at the car, willing Heather to be faster.
"I am. Evan, it's not here!" Heather started crying in earnest. He could hear loud, jagged bursts of tears coming from his car. She started throwing things out of the car door and into the night in her search for the knife.
"Heather, forget it," he called. Time was slipping away from them. "Just come here. Now!"
Heather ran back to his side, not risking a glance at her sister's face. She just couldn't bear to look.
"Call 911! Now! While you are speaking with them, I need you to press down on this and put pressure on Cat's wound. She's losing a lot of blood. Tell them there's an officer down and we need a Medivac to New York General. Hurry!"
Heather knelt next to Catherine's head, pushing a piece of rubber glove onto her sister's wound, trying to stem the bleeding. She dialled 911 with one hand and put the phone to her ear.
Evan snapped his focus back to Catherine. He didn't want to admit it, but without that knife, without a way to inflate her lung, he wasn't sure what he could do for her. He leaned his ear to her mouth and couldn't hear anything. His fingers on her neck revealed that her pulse was barely there, fluttering softly against his touch.
He leaned over Catherine's fragile body and started performing CPR. He tipped her head back, plugged her nose and blew into her mouth. He could feel immediately that it wasn't working as it should. Her collapsed lung was preventing the rush of oxygen her body so desperately needed. He tried again, breathing harder this time. Nothing happened.
A sob escaped his throat. He knew the outcome of this. He had seen the results on his table too many times. He couldn't stem the tears that welled up in his eyes. He compressed her chest and tried once more to flood her lungs with his breath.
"Damn it, Cat!" he raged. "Breathe!"
He worked over her desperately, trying everything he could think of to save her. He wouldn't give up until she was breathing again. His movements became frantic, harsh, broken. Heather finished her phone call and tossed the phone behind her. She rocked back and forth on her heels, keening over her sister, whispering her name, trying to press the blood back into Catherine's body.
Evan gave all the breath in his lungs to Catherine. He breathed for her: in and out, in and out. He worked on her for minutes, for hours, for all time. He cried for her, his tears slipping down his cheeks and falling, unheeded, onto Catherine's face. She never stirred. She was still, her body growing cool.
The sirens in the distance went unnoticed by Evan and Heather. They continued to work over her, battling the inevitable.
Suddenly, people were streaming all around them. Gentle hands pressed against Heather, coaxing her away from her sister's body. Evan sat next to Catherine, numb with disbelief, his eyes wide, his arms limp at his side, useless. He continued to cry silently as someone else tried to breathe for her, tried to make her heart start beating. From somewhere behind him, he heard Heather scream. The sound choked her with its fury, its power, its sadness.
A warm pair of arms slipped around Evan, helping him to stand, moving him away from Catherine. He looked away, into the distance, into the sky, away. When he looked back, he saw a woman slip a white sheet over Catherine, covering her body, her beautiful face. Evan blinked once, cleared his eyes, blinked again. He sank to his knees, his head in his hands, his body curled into itself to contain the ache.
"I'm sorry," a man said, one of the emergency workers, his hand on Evan's shoulder. "I'm so sorry. There's nothing more we can do."
The Beast paced in the bushes. His feet carved out a path, his hands tore branches and leaves from the trees. He snarled and his breath was ragged, torn from his chest with each exhalation.
He heard Heather scream. And he knew. He knew that Catherine's forever had started now. Without him.
"No!" His rage boiled over and his body couldn't contain it. He ripped a thick branch from the trunk of a tree and threw it as hard as he could. He tore up the ground and mangled the foliage. He rammed his hand into a thick oak tree, the impact shaking the branches and causing leaves to fall all around him.
His fury filled the empty hollow inside of him. It filled him with purpose, gave his life meaning.
He looked up at the sky and clenched his fists, not able to stop them from shaking. His roar penetrated the darkness and sunk into the hearts of each person near enough to hear it. A single tear escaped his beastly eye, rolled down his rough cheek.
And then he started to run, blinded by the pain inside him.
The next morning, Vincent woke up.
He was lying propped against a metal wall, waist deep in cold, dank water. He moved his head and pain radiated through his body. He gasped in agony and his sharp inhalation echoed through the musty chamber.
Light streamed in from above. He looked up and saw a metal grate. Through that he saw concrete and people's feet walking by above. He was in the sewer. The dim light hurt his eyes. He closed them and sighed. The only thing he wanted to see was her face.
He felt surprisingly weak. He wasn't used to suffering in this way. His life had been built around his strong, physical condition, first as a soldier and then as a beast with unnatural abilities. He lifted his hands in front of his face. They were covered in blood. Pain shot through his chest and he coughed. He sniffed the air and knew that the blood covering his hands wasn't his own.
He tried to sit up, but couldn't. He growled and fell back against the wall. His chest ached and he could feel every throb of his straining heart. He looked down and saw that his shirt was covered in blood. This time he knew it was his. He moved aside his shirt and saw two bullet wounds, of roughly the same size, puncturing the middle of his chest. There was so much blood that it was hard to see anything, but he didn't care.
Vincent's breathing slowed and the pain started leaking away. Bright lights flashed in front of his closed eyes.
He sensed he wasn't alone anymore. He opened his eyes and Catherine was there, in front of him. She was stroking his hair from his face. Her eyes glistened and shone with love. She was crying and her tears fell onto his chest and mixed with his blood.
"Vincent," she whispered, her voice sweet and angelic.
"Catherine," he smiled. He reached up and touched her face, cradled her cheek with his big hand. He stroked his thumb along her delicate cheekbone. She rubbed her face against his hand, closed her eyes and smiled.
They sat like that for a moment before she opened her eyes. She looked right at him and her hazel eyes pierced his heart, conquering it, healing it.
"I love you," she whispered simply.
"I love you, too," he said. He coughed and knew there wasn't much time left. "For the last nine years. Every thought I've had, everything I've done since then has been for you."
"Shhhhh…" she murmured. "I know. Hold me."
He weakly pulled her to him and pressed his lips against hers. She smiled as he kissed her and gently stroked his face.
Catherine kissed Vincent with all of the love she had in her heart. She briefly moved away before lying down at his side. She tucked herself under his arm and rested her head against his chest, listening to his struggling heart beat for her. She gently stroked his arm with her fingertips and sighed. This was where she belonged.
Vincent tightened his arms around her. He looked up at the ceiling and smiled, finally at peace.
"Catherine," his whispered.
He closed his eyes and went to join his lady. For forever.
A/N – Please don't hate me. This idea came to me this morning as I was on my way to work and I felt compelled to write it down. Life is precious and short and definitely shouldn't be wasted.
BTW, Vincent and Catherine just need to get their acts together so this sort of thing doesn't happen. Kiss already. You know you love each other.
Don't worry, I'm still working on Chapter 8 of "Resolutions." xA