Haven: Two Breaths

Gift fic for RazielOmega based on the final scene from Season 4 Episode 10. Happy Birthday, Aria! Have some Haven-ly angst on your special day!

One breath.

A sharp inhalation. His breath ghosts across her skin, stilted, quivering, as the bare palms of his hands press against her gunshot wound. Blood seeps between his fingers.

Two breaths.

They're strained as she tries to gasp for oxygen. With every trying breath, it only seems to get harder. She just wants to give up, let darkness cloud her vision and pull her under. Smother her in a deadly embrace.

One breath.

He presses on the wound harder, dark red crimson – hers – staining his skin. Staining his skin with the indelible reminder of what he'd done, even though he didn't know this would've been the outcome.

"Duke," he manages to say, eyes not straying from the woman he loves. He notices her unfocused eyes, makeup lined eyelids starting to droop. Barely hears Duke shuffle over to his side.

Time is a precious gift, a luxury neither of them could enjoy in the moment. Instead, her voice echoes in distinct clarity from the depths of his mind.

"Well, at least Haven has both of us again."

For how much longer now? He wonders.

Two breaths.

"Parker…" From somewhere in the darkness, she hears his voice. The voice of the man she loves. She wants to move toward it, break through the surface, rise above the suffocating darkness keeping her under. "Parker, stay with me."

She's being dragged down. Deeper, deeper…

"I don't care who you are or what you are. I love you."

Whimpering softly as she struggles between consciousness and unconsciousness. She knows Nathan and Duke are beside her, aching to pull her from the black abyss she's sunken into.

Some part of her, somewhere, hopes that's enough.

One breath.

"I'm losing her, Duke," Nathan nearly growls in frustration.

"Ambulance is on its way," Duke tells him, gaze traveling from Nathan's face, fear and anguish streaked across it, while Audrey's face displays unbearable pain.

"Just hang on, Parker," Nathan whispers and Duke wonders if it's more to comfort his own state of mind than Audrey's.

"You're gonna be fine, Audrey," Duke says, though he's not sure if he even believes it. Will she?

"Who does William think I am?"

The thought of William makes Nathan's stomach turn and clench and he fights the overwhelming urge to go over to William's prone, bleeding form and bludgeon him with his gun.

But he won't (can't).

Killing him will kill Audrey.

Audrey. His Audrey.

Two breaths.

She wants to scream, cling to whatever chaos crumbling around her exists as the black abyss threatens to invite her in permanently. She must will herself to hold on a little longer.

Nathan and Duke are by her side. Both protecting her in their own ways.

Just two more breaths and she can…

"Parker!" Nathan's voice suddenly becomes more insistent, desperate. "PARKER!"

Yet this comforting black abyss consumes her. Envelops her entity, her heart and soul.

One breath.

Nathan's breath hitches in his throat as everything suddenly stills. Her blood, which stains his fingers, suddenly doesn't seem so important anymore.

He stares at her closed eyes, still chest and draws a single breath.

Duke shifts beside him. "Nathan, what's wrong?"

His voice comes out in a barely audible whisper. Choked. Strained. Broken.

"She's gone."