Author's Note: Written about this character before, and this was inspired by the word 'anguish' on a website community I belong to. Charlotte is the property of BloodMoonLycan.


SAVING GRACE

Giving a cry riddled with anguish and anger, he felt his knee jerked out from under him with the force of the shot, and dropped first onto the other leg, then to his side, before clamping a gloved hand over the bloody injury, which oozed badly and generously. The man near to him paced almost predatorily, and mockingly so, and chuckled, loading more bullets into the large chambers of his modified six-shooter.

"Now… what good did you think fighting me would do, mutt?"

This human was certainly different… he had strength Adrian had never known in a man, trained or not. He had an air of arrogance, superiority and military about him, something that drove the lycan somewhat… insane with rage. He leaned his head against the cold stone floor for a moment, dragging in a harsh breath, before a boot shoved into his abdomen, and rolled him onto his back. Before he could move, the same heavy foot pushed down forcefully onto his chest, pinning him as the gun aimed.

"I never saw the appeal in a quick and painless kill, personally," he rambled almost in a bored tone. "Seems too generous to the victim to me…"

Adrian growled, hearing the hammer cock, before the human cocked his head, and changed his aim. The deafening thunder-crack of the gunshot was all he heard for a split second before his own voice tore over the top, agonised and unbridled. He didn't care for an act now, of bravado or over-the-top masculinity. Right now he was wounded, and he was hurting… badly… the silver was burning like a son of a bitch and he needed to get the bullets out. The man grinned, removing his foot to allow Adrian Ravensky to curl up into an almost foetal, protective position, breathing ragged and unsteady as he placed a hand over his bleeding side, where the bullet had slammed him with the force of a freight train.

Fingers twisted through his feral hair and yanked up and back. "I'm taking from your reactions that my bullets are playing havoc with your… condition?"

"Go to hell…" Adrian had followed the man, tipped off by some of the locals about lycan killings. He was a hunter of some kind… either that or a sadist; perhaps a bit of both. Squeezing his eyes shut, he felt his head pulled back further, almost tearing him up onto his knees, the right of which was still causing him unrivalled agony, even as the gun barrel was pressed to his upper back, where his shoulder met his neck.

"Now that's not very nice…" With a mock-sigh, he added, "Oh, and by the way, this is gonna hurt… a lot." Adrian could practically feel the grin, pulling in a deep breath to brace himself for the next shot… just before he heard it.

… But he didn't feel it. No pain throbbed in his torso, and for a minute, he wondered whether the hunter had been teasing him. Of course, when the grip in his hair faltered, and he slumped forward onto his hands and knees, and finally onto his right side, he realised he hadn't been shot for a third – and potentially final – time. Someone had shot the hunter. The blood spray over the wall not far away was testament enough to that, as was the choking sound behind him. Adrian managed to turn his head, eyes strained, in time to see the gushing of blood from the man's neck, before he dropped his gun… and then fell limply to the floor.

Just managing to turn his eyes to the doorway, he felt a rush of relief.

Charlotte…

"Dammit…" She charged forward, dropping the weapon she had used, and skidded on her knees down at his side, immediately – though with a muttered apology – pressing down hard on his side, eliciting a low whimper from him. "What happened?"

"… He shot me," he responded roughly with a degree of sarcasm. "Twice… it kinda hurts." He knew that if he hadn't been badly injured, she would have smacked his arm at that moment. But as it was, she just leant over carefully, brushed his tangled hair from his forehead and brow, and kissed him briefly on the temple.

"You scared the shit of me… still are. How bad is it?"

"Um… I don't know. The knee is hurting like a bitch."

Charlotte threw a glance to his leg, and sighed distastefully, a linger of a growl rattling along on her sigh before she gazed over her shoulder. Adrian could only just make out the sounds of crashing footsteps. "The cavalry's on the way… hang on. You're fine."

Glancing up at her as affectionately and gratefully as he could manage, Adrian smiled. "Cavalry's already here, Charlie…"

Smiling softly, and stroking his bestial hair, she murmured lightly, "Don't call me that…"