Okay, I'm going to blame this fic on three things. First, I watched all of Escaflowne last week. Second, I reread a number of supernatural fics in the past week. Third, I just finished Memoirs of a Geisha about two hours ago, and something mentioned in passing set me to thinking.

^_^;; All in all, I'm just glad Bob is still functioning as a muse. NEway...

Author: Lys ap Adin (lys_ap_adin@yahoo.com)
Title: The Promise in a Feather
Category: Drama, s'pose...
Warnings/Labels: Angst, angst, and angst again. Shounen ai. I wrote this with my usual couple in mind; however, I'm pretty sure you can take this as any mix 'n match of the boys that you please. I'm in a weird mood right now, so the fic is a little... peculiar.

The Promise in a Feather


In the back of my mind, I always knew that it wouldn't endure forever, no matter what we promised each other between and during our bouts of lovemaking, and that the eternity he offered me was a temporary thing. That didn't make any difference to me in the beginning, because for a time (just a short time, mind you), I believed in forever.

We inhabited two worlds, and they met and entangled in us for a time before breaking and floating away from each other.

I knew his secret almost from the beginning. For one of my kind, I have keen senses, and there was something about me that disarmed him even at the moment our paths first collided. Then again, maybe he allowed me to learn the truth. He always has been lonely, and there was something in me that called out to him as surely as he called to me. I certainly knew it by the time we tumbled together into a narrow bed that only just supported the enthusiasm of our exertions, and it was no surprise to me when his iron control slipped during one of the many dizzy moments to let me see some of the truth of him. The truth shocked me, but it did not surprise me, and that may have been the one thing that made it impossible for him not to love me.

Knowing also doomed us from the start, although it's debatable that we ever had the slightest chance of not escaping the inevitable.

He explained his mission to me once, giving me to understand how it was he came to walk among us, coming and going and behaving as realistically as any mortal might have. He had strict rules that his mission required him to follow, however, and stepping outside of those boundaries, the way I understood it, was equivalent to a fatal mistake. He did not say, but I understood, that he knew that the day would come when he would have to choose between his mission and the friends he had made among us, and then things truly would fall apart.

People never did understand why the two of us snatched so greedily at each other and any scrap of happiness we could reach, but we both knew that we were taking as much as we could, to be able to savor when we eventually found ourselves alone again.

Although we knew to expect it, the end surprised us anyway, arriving so suddenly that there were things left undone. But there are always things left undone at partings, because we humans are a lazy bunch who cannot believe that any stone would disturb the placid ponds of our contentment until the ripples have already spread out from the point of contact.

I wasn't the one. I take a perverse comfort in that, relieved that it was not for me that he broke the Rules, but bitter that there could be anyone in this world worth his leaving me. It was one of the others, one of the child-warriors who are my family more than any flesh-and-blood kin could ever be.

They all had at least some inkling that he was different, but the truth left them all dazed, even me, when he let the veil slip away completely, and instead of the skinny kid we used to know, there was a warrior with incandescent wings standing there with an ancient sorrow pooling in his eyes. He reached out, just brushing his fingers across the pale bloody forehead, and that was all the miracle it took to absorb the pain and hurt.

Somehow I had expected that we would have time, if just a moment, to say goodbye, but I was mistaken. There was a flash of light that blinded us all, and then he was gone without even a chance for any of us to say a word, and we were left to scramble our way out of the mission without any time to process what had happened.

I explained what I could to the others in a voice that must have sounded dead and hollow, and I know they would have committed me to a comfortable room with cushioned white walls if they hadn't seen it for themselves. The less credulous of us survivors persuaded themselves that what we'd submitted as the mission report was the truth: that he had died in combat with the enemy, saving one of his partner's lives, and that the body had been lost in a subsequent explosion. They very carefully avoided ever speaking of it again.

The rest of us knew what had happened, although we never spoke of it either.

I knew from the start that our forever wasn't like everyone else's forever and that someday he would have to leave me for good, and I accepted that as part of the bargain of loving him. Since he went away, I've had plenty of offers for new relationships, some of which I've been a fool to reject. There are those who say I'm lost in the past, wasting my time on a dead lover.

I say that they are people who do not know the meaning of aishiteru, nor the hope that I find in the single large white quill glowing with the soft light of hope that I found lying on his side of the bed the night he went away.


Um... feedback? Please? e_e