A Story of Winged


Stars. Thousands. Millions. Billions. No, he thought, infinite. Something so majestic and untouchable could not have a sum large enough to tally its beauty, its mystery. With his legs dangling over the side of the building and head tilted up to face the heavens, he knew he could never even think of touching something so glorious.

"I will dirty their light with my touch," he said to himself, his voice regretful as it carried through the darkness. "Just like they said I dirty this world."

He sighed, his breath clouding before his face as he tilted it down. He looked passed his feet, shoed in dirty white sneakers with their souls falling through their mouths, down to the blinking lights of the city. The city. So big, so diverse. They said there was room for everything. All types of people. Of all ages, all races, all backgrounds. In the city, there was just the human race in all its changing faces. There was a place for everyone, they had said. And so he had gone, thinking that was where he could start his life.

His new life, in a new world.

And what had they done? They had taken a single look at him and he had been shunned. Labelled as inadequate, as too different to fit in, as inhuman.

And oh, how it had hurt! To be disposed of in such a way. There was no place for him in a city fit for humans.

And he was not human. They had told him so.

He was suddenly framed by the great white wings growing from his back, fanning out at his sides in all their glory. He snarled at them, took grip of a single long feather, and yanked it from his skin. Wincing at the pain yet revelling in its familiarity, he stared down at the feather in his hand. So soft, so perfect, so alien.

Flicking his wrist and letting go, he watched it fall down, down, down through the night, a single spiralling fleck of white. It disappeared in the lights and height, becoming nothing. Nothing. "Like me," he murmured. No. That was not right. He was something. A disgrace. A disgrace to the race of human beings. They had hurt him. They had called him names. Freak. Abomination. Scum. Called those names by the people of the city, by the people everywhere, yet he had been created by people.

He wished he was back in the Factory with no knowledge of this world. In there, he had believed there was nothing else. Just that big dome that was his world, that was his life. And all those others like him, they were the true humans. There was no difference, no prejudice, nothing that would set him apart as the others. Yet, he was now out here, in the world he hadn't known existed, and wished for nothing more than the prison he had been born in.

"To live in a world that doesn't want me," he thought aloud. "That hates me for who I am and what I was born, and shuns me for my differences." He sighed. "What's the point of living?"

He fingered the feathers of his wings, the things that set him apart in the eyes of everyone else. When he had burst forth from the Factory, from that world inside a dome, he had been amazed. A whole new world, a brand new place. Where there were blue skies and a sun so bright it hurt to see. Where there was startling cold and stifling heat. And the sky! He was able to fly without restraint. Feeling the wind in his wings and the air in his hair. Weightless and unshackled.

Oh, how free he had thought himself.

But now, now he knew of the horrors of the world. He was imprisoned on the very same thing that had set him free. Prevented from living the life he wanted, disregarded as something abnormal, he knew he would never be able to truly live in a world that he didn't belong to.

He stood, his wings spread out around him, and looked out over the blinding city lights. He slipped his shoes off and stripped the shirt from his chest. Clad in only the clothes he had entered this brave new world in, he tilted his head back and looked up at the stars.

With his hands apart and open towards the heavens, he sighed. "I can't live in a world that doesn't want me." He smiled a broken smile. "I guess I can't live, then." With the wind blowing back hair as dark as the night sky, he moved to the edge, still staring up at the blinking stars. Thousands. Millions. Infinite.

"All the same," he whispered, stepping forward into the darkness. And the wings that had carried him to freedom, carried him to death…


a/n: a one-shot spin-off from my story winged. i took the name "pace" out, so the winged-figure is nameless, merely because i'm using the name in another story. i grew attached to it :)