The Worst Moment

500 words :: Enemy at the Gates :: Vassily/Danilov :: 9/29/03
This is not the worst moment of his life. Maybe if he keeps telling himself that, he’ll even start to believe it.

This is not the worst moment of my life.

Maybe if he keeps telling himself that, he’ll even start to believe it. After all, there’s still Tania. Only it’s hard to care about her right now, with Danilov dead at his feet, his body cold already. And Vassily can’t even cry, can’t even scream, can’t even breathe it seems.

Danilov wasn’t supposed to die. People like him don’t die; that’s not how life works. And now Vassily will be hailed as a hero, as the hero Danilov always made him out to be. A legend that the real Vassily could never hope to live up to, and sometimes he wondered if who he really was, was enough for Danilov.

He’s not a hero, though; that’s Danilov, and Vassily just sat back, unable to move, unable to stop what he knew was going to happen. He doesn’t want to think “why?”, but the question won’t go away. Did he do it for me or did he do it so that his vision of me wouldn’t be shattered? And once he starts down that road, the questions keep coming. Was he fucking me, or was he fucking Russia’s Hero, Vassily Zaitsev?

It hurts to think about it, so he stops thinking, tries to blank out his mind, to think of Tania instead. Only he’s never been able to think of Tania, just Tania. Not even when they were fucking. When he closed his eyes, Danilov was always there, too. Vassily wonders now if he always will be, if he’ll always be fucking a dead man.

When he kisses Danilov one last time, there’s a part of his mind that insists he should be repulsed by the feel of cold, dead lips against his own, but he’s not. He keeps kissing out of some vain hope that if he kisses him long enough, hard enough, that there will be some sort of reaction. He knows it’s stupid, yet he can’t stop.

He can’t stop, and what’s more, he doesn’t want to now. Just this one last time, and maybe then he’ll be able to walk away. His hand steals down between his legs, palm pressing flat against his erection. Still kissing. Lips, cheek, neck, ear, eyes, even the bloody hole in Danilov’s forehead. His trousers unfastened now, his cock hard and aching in his hand as he pulls himself off, his free hand caressing his lover’s face.

And then he’s crying and coming all at once, his face buried in Danilov’s shoulder. “Fuck you… Fuck you, why’d you have to do it? Fuck you, you bastard…”

Eventually he falls silent and sits back, tucking himself back into his trousers and wiping his hand off. He arranges Danilov with the gun, Koenig’s gun, and, staggering to his feet, he walks away without a backward glance.

It isn’t so bad, really. He’s still alive, after all. And there’s still Tania. But maybe this is the worst, after all, because he can’t imagine anything more painful.