Donny is my favourite character (as well as The Stranger... whoever he may be...) and I'm disappointed at the lack of Fanfictions addressing his death. Here's my take on what would have happened had Donny been shot by the nihilists instead of him having a heart attack. It might get a bit sappy towards the end but Ehh... what can you do but abide?
I don't own The Big Lebowski (The amazing Coen Brothers do instead...)
"Don't worry, they're cowards. They won't hurt us."
Walter regretted those words a few minutes later. He was wrong. So, so wrong.
He had just hit one of the nihilists with his bowling ball when he heard it. A gunshot, slightly muted by the screams of the nihilist the dude was beating up a little way off, but it was there. The third nihilist had gone unnoticed by the Dude and Walter and had cornered Donny, who had been cowering on the side-lines as the other two dealt with the attackers.
Without thinking, the gunshot at the back of his mind, Walter attacked the third nihilist and had sent him packing, fleeing after his friends down the road.
It was only then did they notice Donny, lying, convulsing on the ground.
"Dude, we've got a man down!"
Walter couldn't believe it. The nihilist had shot Donny, at point blank range. He wanted to chase after the b*stard and tear his head off, but he couldn't leave his friends side.
Blood poured from the open bullet wound in Donny's chest and he moaned in agony as Walter tried to staunch the bleeding with his jacket, The Dude frantically calling an ambulance from a call-box nearby.
"Come on, man!" He yelled as he tried to push in a couple of quarters
A while later he returned
"The ambulance is on its way, dude." He told him
Neither Walter nor the Dude could believe this was happening.
Donny had always been THERE. Always. From when they had first met, Walter, the Dude and Donny, in college, Walter, a business major, Donny, a English major, and the Dude who said he was doing a degree in something but his story changed each time, Donny had clung to them like a limpet to a rock.
They couldn't remember when Donny had started to hang out with them properly. Maybe it was after they first met at the bowling alley after lessons, or maybe it was when Walter and the Dude had defended Donny against those jocks who had cornered him in the locker room, demanding his money and beating him up when he wouldn't give it.
After their friendship had been set, however that had come about, Donny had always been there, waiting for them, like a dog waiting for its owners to come home. He sat staring into space most of the time, thinking about god knows what, and always came in at odd points in the conversation, but that was part of his charm.
Now he was lying, bleeding out on the car park asphalt, the flames of the Dude's burning car, now well and truly f**ked by the nihilists, flickering across their faces.
"You're ok, Donny." Walter reassured, his demeanour now totally different from the gun-toting maniac that had told him to "shut the f- up!" In the bowling alley behind them barely a few minutes ago. His anger was forgotten, it didn't matter now. Donny was dying. Their little brother was dying. "You're going to be ok."
"W-Walter..." Donny rasped "Dude..." He coughed, suddenly, a small trickle of blood escaping from his mouth. The Dude's blood ran cold at this.
"Yes, Donny?" Dude replied, taking his other hand and squeezing it reassuringly
"Thank you..." Donny smiled "F-for everything... Thank you for taking me... Noone else would..."
"Don't worry, Donny." Dude smiled back "No one would take us, either. Us weirdoes got to stick together, right?"
Donny laughed, but it sounded more like a splutter
"Right..." Donny had his familiar, faraway look in his eyes again. He frowned slightly "I still don't understand what this had to do with your rug though, Dude."
"None of it matters any more, Donny." Dude shook his head. That f**king rug. If he'd only had the common sense to clean it then there would have been no hostage situation, no money, no nihilists burning his car and no… no friend dying in the car park of the bowling alley.
"That's good..." Donny smiled again "…S-shame about the rug though. It really..." His breath hitched in pain "It really tied the room together."
"It did, didn't it?" Dude smiled slightly, but it dropped when he saw Donny's eyes close.
"Donny?" He shook him "Donny!?"
Walter stared at Donny, shaking him to. He could still feel a small heartbeat.
"Donny, come on!" Walter yelled. The ambulance siren filled the air and it drew up, a bunch of paramedics leaping from the back and swarming round Donny, forcing both the Dude and Walter to the sides, where they were taken by some other paramedics to look at their superficial injuries caused by the nihilists. Walter began yelling at them, calling them fascists and pigs and all sorts of Vietnam-esc words until they were forced to subdue him with tranquilizers ('four months too late' Dude pondered) but the Dude sat in silence, unable to tear his eyes away from the throng of people now surrounding Donny.
He wanted his little brother to be OK.
(You can decide whether Donny lives or dies in this version, but I like to think he lives...)