Post by Francis Bonnefoy on Apr 24, 2012 16:39:42 GMT -5
Francis was panting heavily, trying to will away the pain flaring up on his tender face. He concentrated on Arthur, ignoring the strain on his jaw, to speak.
"Love..." With some difficulty, Francis crawled closer to Arthur, pulling the pirate in a strange, three-person embrace with his ward's body. "No. No, Arthur. You're not a monster. You saved me. And if I hadn't been overpowered, you would have been able to save her too."
Sighing deeply, Francis tucked Arthur's face into his neck, rocking the pirate gently. They must have made the most bizarre picture, but at the moment, it was too dark for any other eyes to see.
"I know you," he whispered. "I know you, remember? This fierce protector is part of who you are. Protecting is not the same as slaughtering."
Post by Francis Bonnefoy on Apr 24, 2012 17:03:13 GMT -5
"Shh," Francis crooned. It hurt even more to see Arthur so tormented; pulling him back with words and assurances was the only incentive Francis had to keep talking.
"My darling," he murmured, attempting to keep his face as still as he could, "I know you've done things. Things that still haunt you. But everything you've ever done was always necessary. You've never done anything without a good reason."
Francis knew where Arthur was looking at now, and he knew that what Arthur was seeing would not help. Gently, gently, Francis took Arthur's chin and turned Arthur's face towards his own.
"You're not innocent, I know. I am not either. But it does not matter, Arthur. You are still a good person."
Post by Francis Bonnefoy on Apr 26, 2012 16:53:59 GMT -5
Francis leaned into Arthur's touch before Arthur drew away. Without thinking, Francis reached for Arthur's hand and held it tightly in his own. He needed Arthur to stay with him, couldn't afford to lose Arthur to the depths of his own self-loathing.
"Arthur." His voice was hushed, but held a hint of a noble's command. "Arthur, look at me, my love."
Sighing, he squeezed Arthur's hand. "You did. You stopped them. They won't kill anymore. They won't take innocent lives anymore."
Francis looked down at the girl in his arms regretfully. This was his fault, his grief, his responsibility - his own burden. Not Arthur's.
Post by Cpt. Arthur Kirkland on Apr 26, 2012 17:01:50 GMT -5
".... I-I... no..." He whimpers, forcing himself away from the other. He gazes down at the ground, struck by what he's done.
He still couldn't save the girl. He couldn't stop Francis from getting hurt. He'd shown off his darkest side when he'd sworn to himself to never allow that to happen to Francis and for what? A dead girl and a broken face.
Post by Francis Bonnefoy on Apr 26, 2012 17:15:24 GMT -5
The whispered word was enough to tug Francis back to the moment. He stared at Arthur, his expression somewhere between horror and incredulity. The next second, he took Arthur's face in his hand and kissed him, hard.
The injuries on his face flared, making Francis' eyes tear up, but he didn't let go. He only drew back when he needed air, gasping. Once the pain faded, Francis looked at Arthur solemnly.
"That was not a monster I kissed," he said with some difficulty. "I would never kiss a monster. No, the man I kissed...is ruthless only when he protects. But not a monster. Never a monster."
He had to pause, touching his jaw gingerly. "You saved my life," he continued when he could. "And - and at least we can bury her properly instead of leaving her to rot here. We can let her rest next to her mother."
Post by Cpt. Arthur Kirkland on Apr 26, 2012 17:19:13 GMT -5
Arthur looks at Francis for a moment, and his expression just goes blank. A moment later and he picks Francis from the floor and moves him out of the alleyway. He stays silent. Neither of them were going to win this, and neither of them were going to agree with each other.
Post by Francis Bonnefoy on Apr 26, 2012 17:26:49 GMT -5
Francis knew, from Arthur's silence, that his words were lost on the pirate. As he followed Arthur, taking great care in carrying the girl, Francis decided to worry about that once they were safe. The way home was long, and Francis had to be alert for every step. His carelessness had already cost someone her life.
The whole travel home was silent. It was only until they were back at the mansion that Francis broke the silence. He had his butler clean up the girl for her burial, and his valet attended to his injuries. Francis insisted on holding Arthur's hand the whole time, both for his presence and to keep Arthur from searching his liquor cabinets and cellars.
Once they were alone in Francis' room, with Francis heavily bandaged on the bed, he pulled Arthur to sit beside him.
"I meant everything I said back there." His words were a little mangled by his bandages. He tried for a little levity. "Why, don't you believe me anymore just because I look unattractive now?"
Post by Cpt. Arthur Kirkland on Apr 27, 2012 0:51:10 GMT -5
Arthur was still looking down, and had pretty much done that the whole time. Some of the servants and maids had looked a little worriedly at one another, especially considering he was still covered in blood.
Now he was clean, however, he just felt worse. It felt as though he was really exposed. Rather than turning to look at Francis, he was eyeing the liquor cabitnet. You could practically see him reaching out for it longingly.
Francis comment didn't help in the slightest, and his lip quivered.