linspired

(Submitted by @linspired (and OMFG IS IT AMAZING))

(Heyyy! Here is part 3 of the pain which was started by @historical-bisexual (which she did amazingly). I just got inspired to continue it a little farther (with her permission). Hope you enjoy!)

The news came about in the middle of the night. Alexander felt his heart skip a beat and drop all in the span of a few seconds. Eliza was the one to tell him, his back turned to her because he had been working on something up in his office. It was probably for the best. If she had seen him, looked him in the eye as she read the words “Lieutenant Colonel John Laurens was killed in a gunfight,” she would’ve seen the face of a man breaking; seen the light drain from his face and from his eyes.

She had gone now, albeit reluctantly. After feeling the loving touch of her arms around his neck, Alexander had said he had so much work to do. For once he wasn’t in the mood to talk or to have anyone near.

He knew he probably shouldn’t have done that, because in times of silence he used his words against himself. But what else did an orphan have if not his thoughts and memories to terrorize him?

“You promised all those many nights ago, in the midst of the scent of blood and the noise of the sick, you promised me you’d be here.” Alexander whispered to himself, the shock wearing off. He was still sat at his desk, unable to find the desire to move. “I knew you’d be coming home any day now, you and I would have a victory drink and reunite with Mulligan and Lafayette, perhaps. I was so sure of so many things…”

And maybe that’s what hurt most to admit. All his life, Alexander had never been one to expect things. From the time of his childhood he had always known his time was limited. He looked for death around every corner, longed for it some nights, but it was never supposed to befall his beloved. He was the exception to the rule. He was the exception to the law. He was exceptional.

“Why didn’t they know? Why didn’t those fucking idiots know that the war was already–!” Snap. Alexander let out a gasp as he fell back in his chair, a broken quill between his fingers. He hadn’t even realized he was still holding his quill. He hadn’t realized there were tears running down his cheeks.

“Jesus, John!” Alexander very rarely used Laurens’ Christian name, but his rationality wasn’t reliable right now. “You promised me!” the declaration was ripped from his throat as he pushed away from his office deck and rose to pace on his feet. “I knew you were reckless, I had heard stories, but this… If only I had sent that letter one, maybe two, days earlier, asking you to come with me… We could’ve fought side by side again, except it would’ve been with words and in the safety of Congress, I–”

He stopped. He couldn’t wake Eliza. He kept quiet.

God, he knew deep down he would never be able to allow himself to think of Laurens again, much less speak his name. What tragedy it is to suffer in silence, but Alexander knew himself. He knew the limits of what he could and couldn’t take. He swallowed and breathed deep and wiped the wetness from his eyes.

There was one thing he could do, though it’d mostly be for his own peace of mind.

Alexander retrieved a new quill from the second drawer of his desk, placed a clean sheet of paper in front of him, and began by dipping his quill in ink. As he went to write the first word, his hand stalled.

What do you say to someone who will never reply?

“Stop. Here is fine.” Alexander said to the coachman. South Carolina, a place where he never thought his heart would allow him to be in such a serene state. Henry Laurens had come to collect and properly bury his son a while ago, but Alexander couldn’t bear witness to it right away. Now however, as he walked up a grassy plain, he knew he would never have peace if he didn’t.

In a letter to Mr. Laurens, Alexander expressed his wish to be left alone upon arrival. He supposed that request was respected when no one greeted him on the lawn.

He headed straight for the cemetery to see a mound still relatively new. His heart dropped.

He didn’t know what he was expecting, but the finality of it all sure wasn’t it. Alexander stuck his tongue in his cheek and went on, biting back tears that were stronger than he was whenever Laurens was involved anymore. He was only there for one reason, after all.

In lieu of this big speech containing all the things he never said or all the regrets he was now realizing, he wrote a letter, neatly packed away with nothing scrawled on the outside. He laid it so that it was being propped up by the stone. When he got back to his feet, one of his hands carefully touched the cool headstone in front of him. “The country has lost a brave soldier, and I have lost a dear friend. No man knew me greater than you, and no man ever will. Adieu, mon ami.”

As he turned to go back to his coach, he felt a cold embrace, and it felt like home.

linspired  asked:

Hi there! After reading that last little ficlet of your, I just have to take a moment to gush. I'm an angst lover as well (it's my fave), and I'm sobbing so hard right now. Bless you, honestly. Your characterization is spot on, and your writing is so so wonderful. (This is when I wish it were in book-form so I could call it "a real page-turner!") Seriously, keep up the amazing, amazing work <3

Oh my gosh, thank you SO much! It’s always so nice to meet a fellow angst-lover, and I’m honored you like my angst so much! :’) Your message brought a big smile to my face; it really means so much to me! Thank you!!! :’D <333