Dragomir took a seat next to Niles on the lawn and looked up at the virtually cloudless summer sky. They’d just finished a practice fencing match, and had sat down in the shade for a break when a servant arrived with a tray to hand them each a glass of fresh squeezed lemonade. Dragomir accepted, and clinked his glass against Niles’s with a grin. Though he was disappointed that he’d failed to spot Donavan at the play, he was in good spirits, and felt confident that they’d find another lead soon. Until then, he was enjoying the afternoon with Niles as they spent time preparing for any upcoming duels. Niles was improving, Dragomir felt, and he himself was always glad for the practice, especially now that the weather had gotten so nice.
As Dragomir looked out across the lawn, Dragomir suddenly became aware of one of the servants running at full speed towards them. He had a rather anxious expression etched on his features, and Dragomir stood hp quickly, helping Niles to his feet as well, and walked to meet the servant.
“I’m sorry, sir!” the servant bowed hastily to them both, gasping to catch his breath and leaning forward with the effort of running. He handed a neatly folded paper to Dragomir, who opened it quickly only to discover that he had absolutely no idea what it said or what it was about. He only recognized Julian’s signature. Dragomir furrowed his brow and looked to Niles, handing him the paper.
“What’s this about?” Dragomir had no idea why Julian would ever write to him, and was a little concerned.
The servant managed to straighten, only to drop in another bow again as he explained hastily, “He’s on his way now—he wouldn’t wait in the parlor and he insisted that I deliver it right away!”
Niles peered over Dragomir's shoulder worriedly, reading over the letter before he realized that it was a cartel... from Julian. But that meant that Julian was going to duel Dragomir again?! Why? Niles didn't understand, so he hurriedly explained to Dragomir. "He's going to try and duel you again, Dragomir, it's a cartel! He says that you've 'publicly humiliated' him and that you've 'physically threatened’ him and 'have what rightfully should be his' and that he's going to defeat you to defend his honor!" Taking Dragomir by the arm, he looked up into his eyes pleadingly. "Oh please, Dragomir, you have to stop him! You can't duel him again, you just can't! It was bad enough once, but..." His voice trembled and he took a breath, trying to remain steady and failing, "You have to talk him out of it!"
“What?” Dragomir growled, looking at the paper once even though he was unable to make out the neatly slanted and overly flourished writing. He looked down into Niles’s eyes and swallowed, forcing himself to calm down. Niles was right. It would be pointless to duel him again. The last had ended badly for Julian, and Dragomir knew that if provoked, there was a very real possibility that he could seriously injure Julian this time. He looked up, back towards the manner, and saw Julian, approaching fast, across the lawn. He gripped Niles’s hand briefly, and tried to give him a look of confidence as he took a deep breath. Biting his lip, he released Niles and went to retrieve his sword, just in case. While he would do everything he could to avoid the duel, he refused to approach Julian unarmed in light of the cartel. He then returned to Niles’s side, wordlessly waiting for Julian to make his way to them.
Both servants had already left by the time Julian stopped in front of them, a respectable distance away. Dragomir took a final look at Niles, before walking forward to Julian and running an anxious hand through his hair. He had no idea what he could say to avoid a duel Julian had obviously already invested so much thought in; if he’d written a cartel, he meant business. Dragomir himself had never written, no issued a cartel before, but he knew it was insurance in the event of a death—whether accidental or intentional.
“Julian—” Dragomir started, but Julian’s swift attack cut him off, and he was forced to defend with a hasty prime, only just barely removing his blade from his scabbard in time to defend his face. It was a cheap shot—Julian was obviously aiming to get him angry. Dragomir exhaled sharply, backing out of range and refusing to respond in the way Julian had hoped. “Damn it Julian!” He shouted. “Why do you want to fight me?” He demanded. “We both know you’re going to lose.” Dragomir tried to say it calmly, only realizing after he’d spoken that it sounded more like a taunt than a rational reason for them not to fight. Julian, of course, took it as a taunt and rushed at him with a fleche. Dragomir side-stepped nimbly and caught Julian by his sword arm, jerking him roughly to a halt and holding them so that they were corps-a-corps and neither could make use of their blades. “Cut it out. I don’t want to fight you—stop what you’re doing right now. Do it for Niles.” Dragomir glanced over his shoulder at Niles, hoping Julian would follow his gaze and realize how distraught Niles was over the situation.
Julian, however, took Dragomir’s moment of distraction to wrench his arm from his grip and reestablish the measure with a little backwards balestra. Dragomir snapped back to attention and lifted his sword to en guard defensively.
“Niles read it to you!” Julian yelled, referring to the cartel. “You know why I’m doing this!” He said, lunging again at Dragomir. Dragomir parried quickly, again trying to move out of the way. Julian had completely exposed his side in the attack, and as much as Dragomir longed to strike him, just to teach him a lesson, he held back, unwilling to go against Niles’s wishes again.
“You idiot!” Dragomir barked. “I’m not going to fight you.” All the same, he didn’t lower his sword. Something in him wouldn’t let him lower his guard while Julian still had his blade aimed at his throat.
Niles clasped his hands together tightly, grateful that Dragomir was trying, but still terrified, especially because Julian wasn't stopping. His heart was in his throat, and he was on the verge of tears again, but he knew he had to keep in control, to try and keep the situation under control. "Please!" he tried weakly, "Please, don't...!" He didn't know what else to do, though, he was so helpless... he would have to hope Dragomir could take care of things, or else... he didn't want to think about what would happen.
“Why the hell not!?” Julian demanded, ignoring Niles and almost in tears himself. “I have been wronged!” He yelled, his voice squeaky in his rage. “And I deserve a fair fight!”
“It’s not a fair fight, Julian.” Dragomir said lowly. “We’re not evenly matched.”
“If you’d duel like a gentleman, I’d beat you!” Julian took a step forward and Dragomir tightened his grip on his sword. Julian engaged his blade in a froissement, pressuring Dragomir’s blade downward and sliding his own down it to try and get through his defenses.
Dragomir disengaged and beat Julian’s blade back, engaging the swords in minimal conversation. “What rules do ‘gentlemen’ duel by?” Dragomir asked, his voice as low as a growl. He was beginning to become very irritated.
Julian didn’t answer, instead taking Dragomir’s blade in a fast envelopment, forcing him into a bind so that his sword was aimed at the ground. Julian stepped in quickly for the attack, but Dragomir moved aside again, narrowly missing his strike and cutting upwards to beat Julian’s blade back ferociously. Without thinking, he followed the parry up with a riposte, darting in past Julian’s defense and slicing him neatly on the shoulder. Julian let out a yelp, and they both backed up hurriedly, Dragomir biting his lip and glancing back at Niles with an apologetic expression.
Julian grit his teeth and shut his eyes briefly, clasping his hand over his wound even as the blood gushed out around his fingers. Dragomir really hadn’t been intending to attack at all, but Julian’s aggressiveness took him so off guard that he hardly known how else to respond. He’d seen an opening and gone for it—instinct had taken over. Maybe it was that that ‘gentlemen’ lacked.
Niles cried out, clasping his hands over his mouth, as Dragomir struck Julian, tears coming to his eyes and beginning to flow forth. "D-don't hurt him!" he squeaked, his voice trembling with his tears. If Julian wouldn't let Dragomir not fight, then he could only hope Dragomir would defeat him without hurting him, and that somehow everything would be okay. Still, he was terrified; he knew the legal implications of a cartel, and he could only hope against hope that it wouldn't need to stand up in court, because if so... Niles thought he might die, too.
Julian lifted his arm again, returning to en guard with a wince as more blood stained his coat. Still, his expression was set with determination, and he bit his cheek to keep from making any sounds of pain.
Dragomir slid into a more offensive stance, carefully lifting his rapier and aiming it at Julian in an invitation. He’d decided that the duel had to be brought to an end and that he had to defeat Julian if it were to stop. He didn’t want to hurt him, he didn’t want to upset Niles any more than he’d already done, but Dragomir knew that if he didn’t make his victory obvious, complete, Julian wouldn’t give up. He try again.
Julian took Dragomir’s invitation willingly, hurrying forward and lunging with another balestra. Dragomir parried, but Julian used trompement to successfully navigate around the parry and caught Dragomir on the chest, a small slice that just barely broke the skin. Still, Dragomir was incised, and took his blade, forcing it out of the line of engagement as he lashed out a Julian, perhaps more violently than he should have. Julian managed to parry, and nearly tripped over his own feet as he attempted to back off, crossing one leg over the other and swinging his sword in the hopes of catching Dragomir’s blade.
Dragomir continued to reprise as he bore down on Julian, not allowing him to reestablish the measure and not leaving any openings for conversation. Julian’s blocks were becoming wild now, and Dragomir knew this was how he’d defeated him last time. He’d backed him up until there was nothing left for him to do and then knocked him down. He had to do something different this time, something to show him how badly he’d lost.
When Julian next parried, Dragomir used insistence to break through, pushing roughly past the block, and flicking his blade so that it stung Julian’s back. Julian gasped from the pain and nearly dropped his weapon in surprise as Dragomir couldn’t help but smirk at the success of his attack. Usually, his opponents didn’t leave themselves open enough for him to throw his point and expect any sort of success.
Julian shivered at Dragomir’s expression, and made a feeble attempt at a feint; Dragomir saw right through it, and beat him to the attack, landing a simple thrust to the same shoulder he’d already wounded. Julian let out another yell and dropped his rapier, hurrying backwards as fast as he could. Dragomir knelt slowly to recover Julian’s sword and followed him at an even pace. Julian was holding his wounded arm again, and looking terrified, but even from the distance Dragomir could tell the second wound wasn’t very deep, and he breathed a sigh of relief. It would be over soon, and the only wound of any real significance had been the first, which he maintained was not entirely his fault.
Dragomir caught up to Julian easily and tossed him his sword. It seemed the well-mannered thing to do, but Julian shut his eyes, filching away from the weapon and leaving it where it had fallen on the ground. Dragomir took four strides over to Julian and grabbed him roughly by the collar with his free right hand. “I hope that means you’ve conceded.” He snarled. Julian looked up at him fearfully and shuddered before making his face into one of defiance.
“Never,” Julian breathed. Dragomir glared at him for a split second before lifting his arm and hitting Julian with the pommel of his sword. Julian crumpled to the ground, and Dragomir let him drop; he hadn’t fainted—Dragomir had held back as much as he could, but the bludgeoning had broken the skin, and he was obviously dazed.
“Give up!” Dragomir barked coldly. “You can’t win.” He glared down at Julian and flicked his sword to clean it of the blood before sheathing it. With a final look down at Julian, he turned to Niles and started back towards him.
Julian refused to let himself cry; there was still something he needed to do. He needed to win. He drew his legs up to his chest slowly and reached carefully down into his boot for the small dagger he had holstered there and slid it into his sleeve, waiting for the opportune moment. Dragomir’s back was turned, he was distracted by Niles—it was now or never. His head throbbed with a dull ach emanating from where Dragomir had struck him, and as he pushed himself up, a searing pain shot from his shoulder to his chest, but he ignored it, somehow dazedly getting to his feet. Despite the slight stupor of pain, Julian’s head felt remarkably clear. He knew exactly what he was about to do, and he knew that he would succeeded. He took a few stumbling steps forward, picking up his pace until it was a run and letting the dagger slide down his arm and easily into his grip.
Dragomir heard fast footsteps behind him, and knew that Julian was gaining on him. He spun quickly around, his mind working fast as he tried to figure out what was going on. But Julian had already caught up to him—he was within arm’s reach—and he had something in his hand that glinted in the light. Somehow Dragomir had the presence of mind to put up an arm in his defense and lunged forward to block Julian’s attack, grabbing him by the outstretched arm that bore the weapon. Still, they collided, and Dragomir felt the cold edge of a small sharp blade sink into his arm. He gasped as the pain registered like white fire in his head and stung his eyes. He threw Julian off of him and staggered backwards towards Niles, extending his struck arm in front of him to see the dagger. He bit his lip and exhaled sharply as he extracted the dagger from his arm. It made a sickening sound as it slid from his flesh, and he gasped again, almost choking, before throwing the knife aside and clutching the wound to stop the bleeding.
Niles' eyes widened in terror as he realized what Julian intended to do too late; his scream didn't come soon enough to warn Dragomir of the impending danger. And in an instant, the deed was done, and then Dragomir's blood was everywhere and he was breathing heavy in pain and Niles was by his side in an instant. There didn't seem to be anything he could do for Dragomir, though, and his emotions were running haywire, his mind a mess of thoughts all tangled in one another in the chaos. Squeezing his eyes shut as new tears gushed down his face, he snapped them open again to glare at Julian, no longer really in control, his emotions taking over him. "I hate you!" he screeched, clenching his fists in anger and worry and frustration. "I hate you, Julian!" His voice was shrill and cracking and he wasn't even quite sure it was his own voice, but he knew they were his feelings being voiced before he broke down into uncontrollable sobs, turning back to Dragomir to try and see if he was all right.
Niles’s words hit Julian harder than any of Dragomir’s blows; he felt as though he’d been the one who was stabbed—right through the heart. He felt a wave of ice numbness sweep over him, and he no longer felt his own wounds as he began to cry, silently. He took a few pathetic staggering steps forward, and almost felt sick at the sight of the blood seeping though Dragomir’s sleeve, drenching it, and staining it a dark red-black. It was worse because he’d done it, not in defense, not in fair combat, but he’d unlawfully attacked Dragomir after the bought had been decided. Dragomir had been perfectly fair—he was the one who had cheated. And that was why Niles’s words stung so badly; Niles had every right to hate him, and Julian knew it. He hung his head and squeezed his own arm even though the bleeding had already stopped.
“But Niles,” Julian whimpered looking up slowly with his eyes shining and his cheeks wet with tears. “I…I did it for you.” He swallowed hard, having trouble vocalizing his reasoning now, even though before he’d managed to write it all out so eloquently. He took a few more hesitant steps forward, and Dragomir backed away, moving in front of Niles protectively. Julian took a deep breath, trying to pretend as though Dragomir weren’t present. “He—he hurts you!” Julian finally burst out. Even now, Julian had proof; there was a bruise on Niles’s cheek and a small cut on his hand. “How can you stand him!?” Julian yelled. “He’s just a stupid brute—you have nothing in common, and he hurts you!” He looked down again, aware of the fact that Dragomir was staring at him the way a wild animal might just before it attacked. He was terrified, but he had to speak his mind. “I want to free you! You deserve so much better, Niles!”
Niles stared at Julian, completely lost, trying to understand what he was talking about. "For me? Why would you ever think I would want you to hurt Dragomir? He means everything to me—you know that! What are you talking about?" Tears were streaming down his cheeks, but his voice was strong, if breaking every so often. "I don't understand what you're saying, Julian! Dragomir's never hurt me, ever. He protects me, he takes care of me! And how dare you call him stupid! I can't believe you, honestly! He saved your life, Julian!" He was surprised at the anger in his own voice, but he didn't stop, he couldn't stop. "I don't need to be freed from anything, Julian! I love Dragomir, and I don't even deserve everything he gives me! He makes me happy, Julian, why can't you understand that? I just don't understand..."
Julian was slightly taken aback by what he heard; he didn’t know what he’d expected, but once again, Niles’s response shook him to the core. “But you…” Julian was struggling to keep a hold of himself, to make his case and to get through to Niles. “You always have so many bruises! Like the one on your cheek now. He’s not safe!” Julian yelled at Dragomir, looking at him for the first time since he’d initially seen all of the blood. “He’s violent and unpredictable. He must hit you!” Julian hated to see Niles cry, and he hated hearing Niles say how much Dragomir meant to him. It wasn’t fair. Julian knew how close they were, but he still felt that Niles deserved better and had hoped that somehow, by defeating him in a duel, he could prove that to Niles. But it hadn’t worked…Niles didn’t understand what he was trying to do. Dragomir may have saved his life, it was true, but by the same token, Julian had saved his life as well. Never before had he regretted a decision so much.
"What?" Niles said disbelievingly, gaping at Julian. "Dragomir would never, ever hurt me! I always have so many bruises because I'm clumsy! I've always had bruises, even before I ever met him!" He pointed to the bruise on his cheek. "This one? I fell down the stairs. If Dragomir hadn't caught me, I would have had a lot more, too. And this cut?" He pointed to his hand. "I dropped a glass and cut myself on the shards. Why didn't you just ask instead of assuming things?" Sniffing back his tears, he turned to Dragomir, disregarding Julian for a moment. "Are you going to be okay, Dragomir...? I ought to call a doctor..."
Dragomir had just finished tying off his injury and he nodded reassuringly to Niles. “I’m fine.” He had no idea how he’s managed to remain calm throughout Julian’s little tantrum, but he’d kept his mouth tightly shut, glaring at the other and struggling to restrain himself. If Julian was as delusional as he seemed, perhaps the best thing was for him to hear it all for Niles. Maybe he’d finally learn his place.
Julian’s eyes widened in disbelief. How could it be? He felt his moth fall open, and he lifted a hand to over it, though his shock was still obvious. All along, all of his theories had been false? How could Niles possibly be so clumsy? And how could he himself be so foolish! He should have asked, he shouldn’t have assumed… But he’d just been so certain! Julian started to cry again, and he wiped at his eyes feverishly to try and stop it, saying nothing. He’d already made enough of a fool out of himself.
Niles nodded slowly, kissing the injury softly before looking back up to Dragomir. "I'll call a doctor in a little bit, okay?" He wiped away his tears with the back of his fingers, then turned back to Julian. "Why did you do this, Julian? I know you're not violent...so why...?" His eyes were damp again, but he tried not to cry, waiting for an answer.
“I already told you!” Julian sniffed, dropping his hands to either side of him and clenching them into fists. Dragomir was distinctly reminded of a child upset about getting into trouble. “I can’t—I can’t explain any more than I already did.” He lowered his head, looking down at the ground and tried to quell his tears. “I thought that if I…if I could just beat Dragomir in a duel, that you would…that I…” He struggled to explain his reasoning, then, he settled on a way out, an excuse for his mistake. “I met someone.” He looked definitively. “At the play. I saw you there. And I was just so angry because…” he didn’t want to say why. “The man I met told me why I couldn’t beat Dragomir. And that I had to cheat to do it.”
Niles blinked. "The man? What man? Why did he tell you that?" He was so confused... who was this guy? "Did he know Dragomir...? What was his relation? Tell me what happened, Julian!" Perhaps it really wasn't Julian's fault, perhaps he was tricked!
“What?” Julian asked confusedly. “What do you mean? Of course he didn’t know Dragomir.”
Dragomir was confused at first as well, but he quickly caught on to Niles’s train of thought. It was entirely possible that the man Julian was actually Donavan in disguise. It seemed unlikely, and the chances were very slim, but Dragomir was certain Julian would never recognize Donavan if he were in disguise, and he knew that Donavan had a way of convincing people. He could have very well have been a major factor in Julian’s foolish decision to attack him. “What did you tell him?” Dragomir asked lowly.
Julian shivered. He wished Dragomir would just remain silent. He felt too ashamed and frightened to face him. Though, he himself knew he really didn’t even deserve to be speaking to Niles, after all the pain he’d caused the both of them… It really was despicable. Still, perhaps he could be redeemed. Maybe he could convince them both that it hadn’t been his fault at all. “I just… I saw you two in the audience and I mentioned something about you to him…”
“Did you say my name?” Dragomir asked sharply.
“Nn…yes.” Julian hadn’t mentioned it during their conversation, but he had said it out loud when he’d first spotted them. He didn’t see why it mattered, though.
"What did he look like?" Niles urged, tears having stopped with this sudden discovery. "It's important, Julian!" If it was really Donavan D'Aubigne, not only was Julian totally forgiven, but it was another lead. "Please... tell us what his name was and everything you remember!"
“He-he was blond. With slightly curly hair and a short moustache. Umm…” He still didn’t get why they were both so interested in they guy, but it seemed to be working to his advantage. He preferred being grilled on a theater event than on his previous actions. “His name was Celestin Granville, and he had his nephew with him, whose name was Amaury…” Julian paused, and somehow managed to smile, in spite of everything that had happened. “He spoke beautiful Albionian...”
At the mention of the nephew, Dragomir was almost completely convinced, but the mentioning of Albioninan confirmed it. He was sure the ‘nephew’ Julian mentioned was actually that young boy Dragomir and Niles had both seen with Donavan just recently. And while Dragomir knew lots of people spoke Albionian, he also knew for a fact that Donavan’s was flawless; he used to act in Albionian, and he often made use of his language skills as an integral part of his disguises. Dragomir didn’t recognize the name Julian had mentioned, but it would make sense for Donavan to have changed around his alibis. The disguise, too, could have very well been a new one, but Dragomir was still fairly convinced that the person Julian had spoken to was none other than Donavan D’Aubigne. Dragomir turned to Niles again. He wasn’t sure if they should tell Julian what the suspected yet or not.
Niles glanced back at Dragomir, and his look confirmed what Niles had been worrying. "Julian," he said slowly, turning back to Julian. "The person who convinced you to kill Dragomir... it was Donavan D'Aubigne." He offered a weak sympathetic smile; at least Julian was just gullible, not mean. Donavan, after all, had convinced Niles to distrust Dragomir once, and he couldn't help but forgive Julian for falling into the same trap.
“What?” Julian asked dumbly. “But I—I already told you his name was—”
“Julian.” Dragomir interrupted sternly. “He was in disguise. That little boy wasn’t his nephew—it was his new protégé.”
Julian looked wildly from Niles to Dragomir, then back to Niles again. How could it possibly have been Donavan D’Aubigne? Julian thought for sure he would’ve been able to tell… A man like that, a real lunatic, couldn’t possibly seem so normal…so friendly and intelligent. “What makes you so certain that—”
“I knew he’d go to that play.” Dragomir interrupted him again. “That’s why we were there. But we missed him during intermission.”
And Julian knew exactly why they’d missed him. His gut wrenched at the memory and he looked back down at the ground, blushing slightly. If it really had been Donavan, than no wonder he’d fallen for it! He’d obviously fallen right into a trap, and it was certainly in no way his fault. He looked up again at Niles, hoping this latest discovery would mean forgiveness. “I—I would have never even imagined that…He totally tricked me! He made me think that…I… I’m so sorry, I didn’t know…”
"It's all right," Niles replied, smiling weakly. "I... I understand. I don't hate you... Julian." He hesitated, glancing to Dragomir and taking a step closer to him. "But you have to be nicer to Dragomir from now on. Don't be so mean, please? For me...?" He looked plaintively at Julian, hoping that the problems might finally be resolved.
Julian breathed a sigh of relief. Niles didn’t hate him. He’d been forgiven. Nothing else mattered. He’d do anything…anything to stay in Niles’s good graces. “I—I will!” He gulped. That really was a lot to promise, but he’d try. He’d done it for a little while, after the trial. It had just been so vexing… But one thing was certain, he would never, ever fight Dragomir again. He still had some cuts and bruises from the last duel, and now he had his arm to worry about… But to think that he’d been tricked by Donavan D’Aubinge! He was ashamed of himself for falling for such a trick, but it wouldn’t ever happen again. He would remember his voice, the sound of it as he spoke Albionian.
“I’ll believe when I see it.” Dragomir commented blandly. He didn’t think Julian would ever respect him, and even if he did start to be nicer, it would only be because he was doing it for Niles. Still, it was an improvement, he supposed.
Niles nodded more enthusiastically than he had been able to muster previously. "Thank you, Julian! That makes me happy, if you'd do it!" He thought a moment, then added, "But... if there's anything you remember about Donavan, aside? Anything? We need any information we can get..." He blinked, hoping Julian would be able to think of something else that would help.
Julian thought back to the first conversation he’d had with Granville…with Donavan D’Aubigne. At the time, everything had seemed perfectly natural—nothing about the kind man and his young nephew had seemed suspicious at all, so it was difficult for Julian to think of any of the details that may have been important. Still… as he ran through the bits of the conversation that he remembered, the save parts that he now realized had been designed to manipulate him, he remembered one detail that struck him as interesting, even before he’d know who Granville really was. “He said that he knew General Rousseau, and even called him by his first name, and things. Do you think he was just making it up?”
“He could have been,” Dragomir reasoned. Still, it was odd for the General to come up again in a conversation regarding Donavan. Especially since he couldn’t help but feel that somehow there was a connection between them. He’d even seen them together—a long time ago, before he’d even joined the military, but still, it was something. “But I think we should try and find out whatever we can about the General… He seems to have connections to too many suspicious things we’ve been turning up lately about Donavan.”
Niles nodded, but looked up at Dragomir worriedly. "But what are we going to do? If he finds out we're looking into him... won't we get in trouble? We'll have to be super careful..." He sighed, thinking it through. "Do you have any ideas of things to do, Dragomir? I just don't know..."
“No,” Dragomir said regretfully. “I don’t even know where to begin.”
“Maybe,” Julian offered, trying to be helpful in order to redeem himself further, “you could see if you can find anything that might connect him to D’Aubigne or the Berceuse Malheureuse? Maybe they really do know each other and you could find out how they met, or something.”
Dragomir nodded in agreement, taking his hand off of his wound slowly to check on it. The bleeding had stopped, and the blood that had seeped the furthest away from the wound was dry. His palm however, we covered in sticky half dried blood, and he longed to wash it. It was tied off, but it certainly wasn’t a proper bandage… Julian looked like his shoulder need some attention, too, though Dragomir would not be willing to offer any help. “We’ll look into it later, then.”
Niles nodded. "Let's go in, Dragomir. I'll call a doctor." He took Dragomir's hand, taking a few steps towards the house before glancing back at Julian. "Thanks for the information, Julian. I... I hope you feel better." And with that, he turned, leading Dragomir away. After all, even if he was all right, Niles didn't want him to get an infection, or anything. He had to call a doctor, and he had to calm down somehow. He was completely drained and blank from all the emotion, and all he wanted to do was curl up in Dragomir's arms. Though, he supposed, that would have to wait now, too, until Dragomir was fixed up... It was going to be a long evening, but not nearly as trying as the day was. Nowhere near.