Angel Of The Alamo
"We were meant to be martyrs in a war of ideals," he coughed, blood staining the rag she held below his chin.
She gave him a small smile, hoping to ease the pain of death approaching.
He blinked up at her wearily and with a shaking hand he reached out and gently touched her face.
Coughing again, his hand dropped but a smile spread across his face.
"You're an angel," he whispered.
A shadow darkened the doorway as she laid a cross upon the mans chest and said a silent prayer.
As she stood from the bedside, brushing off her long skirt, she took a deep, ragged breath and finally turned to face the man that had been watching her.
"We don't have time to give this man a proper burial. Have the men you can spare take him to the pyre," she ordered, not caring if she was out of line.
He gave her a nod then took a step towards her.
He pressed his hand against her cheek and his lips against her forehead.
"He was right, ya know. You really are an angel," he said as quietly as he could.
"If I were an angel I would surely stop the men who are outside the walls and the ones that continue to march towards us," she replied.
"You're still an angel to us all. You were one of the few women stubborn enough to stick around and tend to all of us."
A tear slipped down her cheek and he wiped it away with his thumb, slightly tilting her head up so he could look into her eyes.
"When this is over, Beth, I'm goin' to marry you."
Though tears were still filling her eyes, she snorted and smiled.
"I'm goin' to hold you to that, Dixon."
The night was silent and still and black, the clouds concealing the moon. Despite the bitter cold, the men slept uninterrupted where they could, thankful for rest during the siege.
She swore she was the only one awake as she made the rounds, tending to the wounded and praying over the sleeping men.
"¡Viva Santa Anna!"
A shout rang out, breaking the silence of the night.
The earth shook beneath her feet as a cannon exploded, destroying a portion of wall next to her and taking a few men down with it.
She ran towards them, hoping to pull them out of the rubble.
An arm around her waist jerked her backwards as men scaled the walls, firing at anyone who moved.
"I have to help them," she shouted, her voice lost among the sounds of guns firing and screaming.
"No! You have to get to the chapel," he told her though she could hardly make out the words.
"Bethie," she heard a woman softly calling out to her. When her eyes focused in, she saw the woman clutching to a small child with one hand and reaching out to her with the other. "We have to get inside."
"Go," his gruff voice sounding in her ear.
Once he had put her down, she turned to face him with wide, fearful eyes.
She didn't dare say a word, fearing she wouldn't be able to speak she nodded then turned to follow the woman into the chapel.
On her knees in front of the cross, she clung tight to her bible, her eyes closed and lips moving silently in prayer.
None of the women or children in the chapel dared to step a foot outside, even as the cries drove them to tears.
The door was thrown open, startling them all, and a shot rang out.
Beth gasped and threw her hands over her mouth as a young boy fell to the ground.
His mother screamed and covered his body with her own, praying to God and cursing the men that shot her son down.
She watched as one by one the women around her were pulled to their feet and drug outside.
When she felt the hand twist into her hair and pulling her up from her knees, she closed her eyes as she was pushed forward.
"May you all go to hell." The curse fell from her lips before she could stop it.
The stench of death, burning flesh, and gunpowder surrounded them as the sun began to peak over the remaining wall.
Opening her eyes she swore she saw an angel hovering over the bodies.
With tear and dirt stained faces, the women all turned their eyes towards the sky, awaiting the pain and darkness they were sure was coming for them.
"Beth," a whispered prayer followed as she blinked her eyes open.
A smile slowly crept over her face and she reached out a shaking hand, brushing the tears from his cheek.
"Hold still," a woman's voice softly commanded as the bed on her other side dipped down.
She felt the sticky pull as the woman removed the bandage.
"We lost..." Beth croaked. "We lost so many. How are we still here?"
The woman looked towards Daryl who was staring down at Beth.
"You don't remember?" she asked, glancing between the two.
Beth shook her head, her eyes never moving from Daryl's face.
"What's the last thing you remember?" Daryl asked her.
"I remember prayin'," she said quietly.
The woman smiled. "God must have been guiding you then because you saved us all."
Beth glanced over at her, furrowing her brow.
She smiled again and continued. "You jumped up and ran towards a pile of bodies some of the soldiers were...well, they were making sure they were dead."
"You pulled me out of that pile," Daryl said, Beth's eyes darted back and forth between them.
"I...I...what did I do?"
"You pulled me out. Ol' Santa Anna's men didn't quite know what to make of it so they started firin' at you an' somehow every single shot missed."
"One of his men picked up a bayonet," the woman picked up the story. "The blade went through your side but as far as I can see, there's no real damage and you're healing just fine."
The bells rang out and the doors swung open wide.
When they stepped outside, he lifted her up and spun her around.
She threw her head back and laughed with a smile.
He set her feet gently on the ground and pulled her close.
"Is something wrong?" she asked, the smile falling from her face.
"No," he shook his head. "There's nothin' wrong at all."
"Then what is it?"
He leaned down and kissed her, when he pulled away he said, "I told you I was goin' to marry you when it was over."
"I remember," she said, her smile slipping back into place.
"If it wasn't for you, I wouldn't be here to keep my word," he told her. "You're an angel, Beth. You're the Angel of the Alamo."
A/N: I hope y'all enjoyed this little story I cooked up in honor of Texas Independence Day. I'm well aware that this isn't historically accurate but it's fanfiction. Please let me know what you think of it.