Author note: Okay, so a little info before we go on. This here, Senseless, is in fact a remake of my very first fiction on this site. The title is 'Sing Me Breathless', it has five chapters and is incomplete. It was in fact a ZaneXOC, one of many differences I'm sure you will notice.
It is embarrassing, but I must say I am somewhat ashamed of SMB as an author. But I am also nostalgic for it because it was my first endeavor. Therefore, I'm remaking it, meaning I am taking parts and using them for 'Senseless'.
So, here's hoping you all enjoy this. See you all at the bottom!
Disclaimer: I own the story, Hannah, this version of Gregory though not the character himself.
It was a depressing sight.
Corpses, the dead bodies of war, were still cooling in the light sunshine. It was quiet in the clearing, beyond the calls of a few crows that had found the feast of flesh. Soon, even bigger predators would flow in, drawn to the scent of blood and carnage.
Lightly a golden hawk drifted in an air current. Her sharp gaze hunted the battlefield below her, ignoring the nausea in the pit of her stomach. With a flick to her wings, tucking them, she dived lightly. When she neared the grass, she released a shriek at some crows, which fluttered into the air. Before they could decide to do battle, the hawk landed.
Under the sight of something so obviously not of their world, the crows scattered, rising up in a cloud. They called warnings to each other, watched by the calm gaze of Hannah Shardae.
Swallowing a lump in her throat, she knelt down by her chosen corpse. Her hand reached out and slender fingers brushed through light golden brown locks, a mirror of her own long hair, left down with clips holding it.
This was an irrefutable truth. Xavier Shardae was dead. In her sixteen years, he was simply many in a long line. The call of war, the everyday pull of it, had turned her blood to ice, as it did every Avian. Though she felt the pain of another sibling lost, no tear even hinted at rising anymore.
She blinked briefly, her eyes casting about. Some of the soldiers she recognized, a flight of ravens. Their bodies littered the ground, along with serpiente dead. The hot avian blood was mixing with the cool blood of serpents, making a fowl stench. It was horrid, but she knew it would stay in her nostrils for days.
For something so nasty, she wondered why the mixture wasn't a deadly fertilizer. With having seen so much death, the clearing should have become just as dead as the bodies.
"Trapped rays of sunshine… you remember, don't you Xavier?" Her voice was barely above a whisper. Her fingers continued to stroke through her little brother's hair, ignoring the coolness of his forehead.
It was something she and her Alistair had once told the boy, that the gold in their hair and naturally tanned skin were the suns gift, trapped within them. There would be no such tales from her lips anymore. Slowly her brother had warped into a soldier, with little time for his family. Her Alistair had died when she was fifthteen, defending her sister Danica from a serpent who had not been quite dead when the elder hawk visited the fields. Hannah found herself unable to tell tales anymore without being a little bitter.
That had been the end of those adventures for Danica, Nacola swiftly putting her foot down. She would not lose her heir again. Of course, Hannah was not counted.
Oh, Nacola loved her, in a way, the only way a monarch could. However, she wasn't as vested in Hannah, she let her have more freedom. The young hawk took it, going so far as to leave without her guards. In general, they caught up, eventually.
While her thoughts drifted, she finally heard a cry of strangled pain. Her head tilted, curiosity breaking into her brain. When it came, again she looked at her brother. She couldn't do anything for him now. Though perhaps she could help another.
She followed the cry into a part of shadowed woods. The scent of blood mixed thick with mud there. Her feet sunk as she moved, making her sigh in some vexation. Finally, she found her survivor.
It was a man, thicker of build then an Avian, thinly muscled along his body. He had evidently tried to rise, judging by the shifted mud around him, and fallen back, emitting his pain.
Hannah felt a small shift of fear. Swiftly, she catalogued his injuries with a cold sharpness that would make her mother proud. Minor cuts, here and there, caused blood to dapple his skin. It was the slash in his stomach that held her attention; that was something he might not heal from.
His eyes opened suddenly and Hannah took a step back. Garnet eyes blazed at her.
"Well, Hawk?" He spat the name as though it was insulting. "Have you come to finish me off?"
Ah, of course. He recognized her by hair and skin, as surely as his own eyes gave him away.
Hannah knew killing him would be correct. It would be expected. He obviously thought as much, his eyes almost daring her to make a move. With how much tension was in his broken body she bet he was waiting to see if he could take her with him.
"Don't be ridiculous," she said finally. "Serpents may believe in mercy killings, but not one dealt by my family."
The cobra smirked, tilting his head in acknowledgment to her words. His eyes closed again as he reclined back, not caring his head sunk into the mud slightly. He truly was filthy lying there.
"This might hurt," Hannah announced, making a decision.
"Decided to kill me?"
She ignored the barb in the words, kneeling above his head. Trying to be gentle, but swift, she lifted him by his shoulders. It wasn't graceful, for she had never done such a thing, and the cobra hissed as she stretched his wound. After a mishap of nearly dropping his heavy body, and some quick shuffling on her knees, she had her desired effect.
His back pressed into her knees while she supported his head in the cradle of her arms. His skin was cool, and a part of her marveled at the difference as it sapped her own warmth into it.
Just as she had done for her brother, she brushed sweaty hair from his clammy forehead. Hannah didn't allow herself to think as she pulled a canteen from her side, shifting him so he could drink.
He swallowed the first sip greedily then seemed to grimace. A bit spilled down his throat as he gagged. They both could hear the breath rattling in his lungs. "What is that?"
Hannah lifted her brows. "It's cider."
"It's damned disgusting."
"Forgive me," she said. "But the only blood around here for you to drink is that cooling on the grass, unless you fancy trying to suck it from the mud. If you go for mine I'll drop you headfirst into that mud."
He chuckled briefly before the pain stopped him. His hand pressed into his stomach briefly before she swatted it away, admonishing him not to touch it.
"A wound like this… will kill slowly," he muttered tiredly. "Why are you staying?"
"I killed… many of your people this day."
Hannah bristled a bit. "Are you proud of that fact?"
"Fairly indifferent, actually."
"This war is… senseless. Whether you died or not wouldn't make it stop, wouldn't make it continue. For me personally… I didn't want to be so cold as to ignore suffering, no matter whose it was. I refuse to be."
"… Hmm… my name is Gregory Cobriana."
She had guessed he couldn't be the great and terrible Zane Cobriana. Avians' whispered him to be a demon on the field, slaughtering indiscriminately whatever was in his path. Surely if she had held him, he would have killed her, perhaps with his gaze alone. While tales followed Gregory Cobriana as well, he wasn't as often on the battlefield. When he was, the result was devastating. Really, she should have killed him.
The sounds of horses alerted her, awhile later.
Gregory had dozed off or passed out in pain, listening to her hum lullabies from her people. He awoke when he felt the shift in atmosphere, the hawk holding him seeming to vanish. He knew she held him still, he could feel her warmth against his skin. He could see her face above his, golden eyes cast into the distance. But he could not sense her.
He also felt the presence of his brother, and a few guards approaching. He grunted lightly. It would seem death had failed to capture him again.
"You… should go."
Hannah looked at the serpent with a blank expression he longed to rip apart. The savagery of the emotion startled him. He wasn't one to mistreat a female, even a bird. He attributed it to the fact her guard was so obviously up, like the soldiers he killed. It was a response to the aloofness of her sudden mental absence, a trained reaction of his to kill when in the presence of Avian 'reserve'.
"I'll take my leave then," she said finally.
She shifted him off her and stood. Hesitation overtook her and she tsked, removing her cloak. He watched her in some confusion as she folded it up, bending down again and lifting his head, slipping it under him.
"Thank you, hawk."
She smiled slightly. "I'm filthy because of you. You should be more than thankful."
And she was. Her pristine dress was littered with mud and blood, creating a look of a war goddess almost.
Before his eyes, she shifted into her other form. She was small and golden brown as a hawk, white feathers on her underbelly and chest. As she spread her wings and began to rise, he noted the dark tips on her feathers.
His brother reached him finally, drawing the reins tightly on his horse, dismounting. The quartet of guards drew rein as well, two launching off to aid their princes, while one drew his bow. Gregory saw the guard move, drawing back the arrow.
"Don't!" He spat the word, shooting upwards. The result was he hissed angrily, falling into Zane who caught and steadied him, hands already going to the worse wound.
The arrow was still released despite him startling the guard. Gregory watched it arc into the sky… and watched Hannah dive suddenly, plummeting to the ground before she drew upwards again, neatly dodging the arrow. Her hawks shriek echoed across the sky as she sailed away.
"A hawk with my brother… should I ask?" Zane had watched the hawk dodge as well before flicking his gaze to Gregory.
His younger brother grits his teeth. He had jostled his wound more than he thought, the pain now a persistent throb. "Not what you think," he said.
"She spared my life, Zane. May have even saved it… kept me from going into shock."
"If not for her kind," the guard who fired spat, "you wouldn't be injured at all, prince!"
Zane shook his head. "That's enough for now. For now, I'm just glad you're still alive, even if it is a hawk that gets my gratitude.
"Let's go home."
Author note: Woo-hoo! The reason I have Gregory as the interest is because I can do whatever I want with him. He does not have a personality in the books so he's free reign! Eventually, I may do a ZaneXOC… who knows?
Well, please review! They are oxygen for the story. See you next time!