Dave clamped his hand over his mouth to hold back whatever sour-tasting thing that was trying to come up. His vision blurred with tears until all he could see was red--what had once been his favorite color.
His knees dug into the rough, rocky pavement, but he could hardly feel it, his entire body was screaming with fear and pain and anger. "Bro?" he gasped softly, reaching forward. There was no response, no movement, no rise and fall of gentle breath in his chest. "Bro please, don't do this--I can't just live with Cal," he said, his voice shaking. "Come on, man, don't do this, you can't do this to me!" He was shouting now, but he could hardly hear himself, everything sounded distant and muffled. "Bro, you can't do this, you can't, you can't leave me, not after mom and dad already did," he choked. He found himself leaning forward, resting his head on his brother's broken body. "Bro, you can't, you can't, please." He wasn't sure how long he laid there. There were a lot of sounds and voices and flashing lights, that he barely even registered.
He felt a hand touching him, and his body jerked. "Hey, the kid's conscious!" called a voice. "Kid, I'm gonna need you to stay still, ok?"
Dave pushed himself up and looked at the speaker. It was a man in a uniform reading "paramedic" "M-my Bro," he choked.
"Hey, hey, hey, lie down and don't move, ok?"
"I'm ok, I'm not hurt, my Bro--" The man gently held him down. He could normally push himself up when his Bro had him pinned like that, but, he found himself unable to move.
"You're gonna be just fine, kid, we're gonna take you to the hospital and it'll all be okay," said the man.
"No, no," Dave gasped. "It's happening again, it keeps happening," he choked.
"What keeps happening?" asked the paramedic soothingly.
"M-my Bro, it keeps happening," he said, his voice shaking as well as his entire body. "Never keep him safe, never keep anyone safe," he continued, "a failure, I'm a failure, I'm not a hero, never be a hero."
"It's okay, no one expects you to save anyone--"
"I can't, I can't, I couldn't save him, it's my fault, it's all my fault," he gasped."All my fault," he choked over and over again. His vision blacked out slowly and his voice faded until there was nothing.