Author: Edana [email protected]
Rating: PG-13 (for violence, rape, non-explicit sexual situations in later chapters, nothing hardcore)
Summary: Eadoin's perception of normal changes when he meets two angels, a demon, and finds out the 'truth' about his roommate.
Disclaimer: All owned by me I'm afraid ^_^
Chapter Twenty-Three – The Heart Wants
I could almost see the flower petals slowly unfolding, blossoming and revealing such a simple beauty to the world as the sun-kissed beams of golden light embraced them softly. The smile hadn't faded from my face but it became somewhat bittersweet as I remembered the flowers that had been on my father's grave; I could almost feel the cool, plastic feel of the lily stem in my small fingers before I bent and placed the stunning, mournful white flower against harsh stone.
I wondered how many flowers my mother's grave would have.
The warm voice quickly drew me out of my thoughts. Looking up I saw Kit standing at my bedside with concern in his eyes and a grin on his face, the sunlight dancing across his skin and his almost-silver hair. "Another dream?"
"Yes," I murmured quietly, "another dream."
I had the feeling that my sleep would be plagued with those painful, disturbing images from now on, and the thought chilled me. All the horror, all those deaths and attacks, blood splattered against darkness and the ominous glint of metal. I shivered hard, and Kit noticed and whimpered slightly, and he placed his hand on my shoulder, bringing what little comfort he could to a tortured soul. Idande's rape, Kit's own death, and then . . . then that horrific wet slicing and the explosion of hot blood that took away my mother's life.
"Don't worry about her, dear," my grandmother had said with an almost amused smile. "It was sad of course, but your mother died inside a long time ago. Now her soul has the peace she always wanted, with her husband and her daughter." I swallowed hard at her words. "And besides," she added, "I'm sure he's watching over them. Over your family." A smile creased with age and ancient knowledge. "Over his family." And immediately Nan forgot she had said anything of importance and wandered off.
"How are you feeling?" Kit asked suddenly, and my thoughts faded away.
"Oh . . ." I murmured, confusion and pain swirling inside. The hospital bed was hard and my legs were numb but the biggest pain was the grief that was constantly at my chest and throat, gripping with invisible fingers, making each breath hard and laboured, my eyes watering. When the dreams became too much to bear I woke screaming, panting, tears stinging my eyes and I sobbed so hard, so desperately, that sometimes, as much as it pained me to admit, I wished that I could just die and find the peace I once had. "Fine," I murmured. "I'm just fine." But my voice broke and Kit was watching me with sympathy in his eyes. He said nothing. "I'm not too good," I admitted quietly, a moment later.
He nodded slowly, and the hand on my shoulder moved slowly to my neck and my face, and his fingers ran through my hair soothingly, concerned and supporting with just a touch and no real words. He understood, I guess. He knew a lot of the unbearable pain that was eating away at me inside and I needed that. But at the same time, he really had no idea.
"Elisabet wants to see you," Kit murmured, moving forward carefully and pulling me against him in a loose embrace. "She needs to know that you're all right."
"Not yet," I whispered almost desperately, wrapping my arms around a familiar body, seeking the warmth and the comfort. "Not yet, please. I can't stand to see anyone yet."
He sighed gently. "You can't hide from everyone forever, Eadoin."
"I'm not asking for forever," I breathed, the images of my dreams gripping any lightness that was inside me, and threatening to engulf it. "I just need some time."
"How are you feeling?"
"Hmm?" I looked up quickly, flushing slightly, realising that once again the shadows in my heart had crept into my mind. Hours had past, Kit had left, and no one had visited since. I was glad of that, but at the same time I was deeply disappointed in myself because I knew that they cared, that they were concerned, but I just couldn't bear to see any of them. Once I had been so alone, and now I was embracing the isolation.
The doctor raised an eyebrow as he closed the door behind him, and the flush became all the deeper. "I asked how you were." And then he turned and saw the blooming flowers on the table beside me and sighed gently. "Obviously people care about you, so it's strange to hear that you won't allow any visitors."
"That's none of your business," I tried to say hotly, but the miserable tone in my voice made me just seem pathetic. And then the gripping of my stomach and chest exploded into a stinging pain and I gasped for a moment, my head pounding and tears threatening to spill. "Maybe," I whispered, "the person I want to see isn't here anymore."
"Your mother?" he asked softly, concerned, placing a hand on my good one.
"No, not my mother," I whispered bitterly. And then, repeating my grandmother's words because they kept me sane, "She died inside a long time ago."
He sighed. "Well, let's see how you're doing anyway," and the doctor reached forward and gently raised my broken, bandaged wrist, quietly observing, and then with one finger pressed against the bone. I turned away, but he pressed again, and I realised that his face was twisted in a bewildered scowl. My heart began to pound in fear and concern and I studied him for a long moment before the panic gripped my stomach.
"What?" I said. "What are you scowling at?"
"I . . . I . . ." Quickly he looked at me with wide eyes and the panic there hit me full force, knocking the air from my lungs. "Does this hurt?" he said, pressing my wrist again with two fingers, much harder than before.
"No," I said, and then the truth of that simple statement hit me like a hammer to my chest.
"Nurse," the doctor cried, encasing my hand in his as if to stop it from escaping. But there was a painful rush of fear and disbelief inside of me and I tore at the bandages that were wrapped around the cuts, the scars that covered my skin because the Destruction had tried to tear me apart. And the doctor watched with wide eyes as I pulled open my shirt, and long white strips were peeled away and they floated to the floor like ribbons in the wind, and my skin was exposed.
Clean. Healed. Not a single scar where there had been so many.
"Oh my God," the doctor whispered in confused awe. The adrenaline pumping through my body, heart pounding, I pulled the temporary bandage from my wrist and everything was twisting and stinging inside as I flexed my fingers and there was no pain, no more pain. The doctor jumped to his feet and ran through the door, breaths loud, but I knew somehow that the memory would probably fade. After all, humans don't see what they don't want to.
I felt something then; a strange tingling in the bottom of my stomach, something like apprehension. The feeling was growing inside and my heart began to pound furiously. A tiny point of light amongst the flickering shadows, a small white glow, hung gently in the air. Trembling, I held out my hand and the angel feather sat softly on my palm, and for a moment it warmed my skin with a faint kiss before it faded away.
I smiled warmly.
I stood on the balcony, breathed deeply, closed my eyes and revelled in the cool feeling of the wind wrapping itself around my body, cleansing. Everything was strangely calm, almost eerily quiet, but I didn't care because this was what I needed. I gripped the rail with two hands, knuckles white, and gazed at the beautiful blue of the summer sky, dotted with pale wisps of near-clear clouds.
The colour reminded me of his eyes.
I sighed hard and ran the hand that had once been shattered through strands of dark hair. I couldn't begin to describe the sheer numbness inside of me, nor the almost silent voices that constantly whispered, anxiety and pain and grief gripping and twisting, suffocating me inside. It seemed too hard to breathe sometimes . . .
I wondered exactly where Heaven was, but as I watched the sky with unblinking eyes, the eyes that could see spirits and angels and demons, I realised that I felt close to it. Perhaps it was because of my death, or my love for Kit and Idande, but whatever it was there was a deep feeling that engulfed some hidden part of me and tugged, an almost dizzy wave of nausea amongst a giddy feeling of belonging, being called, knowing there was somewhere out there and that he was safe.
"What are you looking for?"
I turned slowly, a weariness to my body that was almost painful, and saw him. Zayn was standing there, biting his bottom lip and smiling uncertainly, hands clenched. And I realised that the same weariness was painted on his features and I couldn't help but smile warmly in return. "I'm not really sure," I breathed.
He stepped beside me, looking at the vast blueness with those amethyst eyes. It was in this hospital we first met each other, and now we were here together after everything, and there was a strange anxiety inside because I sensed this was yet another ending. "Tell me when you find it then," he said with a watery grin.
"I will." For a long moment we just stood together in comfortable silence before he inhaled and turned to face me, something burning in those eyes, something I couldn't really name.
"How are you?" he asked, a desperateness in his voice.
"I'm holding up," I answered softly, gripping the rail again. "But . . . what about you? Are you okay?"
"I guess so. I mean – I am still a demon despite everything. It was painful but it healed. Pain always heals."
"Is that so?" I asked with a weak smile. He smiled back and for that moment we just stood together on the balcony, the wind wrapping long fingers around us, chilling and icy, watching each other almost shyly. But there was a shadow of a person between us and I knew it, and he knew it too, and he turned to face the sky again and everything that lay below it. Earth. He was looking at Earth with apprehension flickering in his eyes. "You saved a mortal life," I said softly, my heart pounding in my throat. "I guess . . . you're not welcome back in Hell."
"That's a nice way of putting it," Zayn breathed, still looking at the foreign stretch of buildings and cars and parks and places that made up his new home. "It doesn't worry me though. Hell . . . it hasn't been my home for a long time, not really."
I choked, holding back a sudden threat of tears.
"What's wrong?" he asked, concerned.
"Nothing," I whispered, wrapping desperate fingers around my own body, comforting. "Just . . . Idande said something like that. I'm sorry, it's stupid, but I can't help it." The grief inside was flaring, tightening my throat so that I was panting lightly, dizziness threatening to engulf. But Zayn looked at me with painful acceptance in his eyes and my stomach lurched.
"I'm sorry, Eadoin," he whispered, deep emerald strands blowing in the breeze. "I'm sorry for everything."
"Don't be sorry, Zayn. I caused you so much pain and I never meant to, I never meant for any of this." I paused, breathing deeply, trembling lightly. "I'm sorry that I can't love you. Sometimes . . . sometimes I really wish I could but . . . but . . ."
"The heart wants what it wants," Zayn finished softly. Another gentle silence followed, and there was acceptance now. We could both feel it, no matter how painful the thought was. "I guess I should leave," Zayn murmured quietly, the pain clear in his voice. "Earth doesn't seem so bad. Maybe I'll spend some time finding out if that's true. Tell . . . tell Marcell goodbye for me, please? I know he probably doesn't want to hear it, but I only hope I can turn out like him in the end."
"You're meant for something, Zayn," I said, my voice threatening to break. "You'll find it, you will, the real reason why you're here. You'll find it." How could I be so sure when my own heart was ripped to shreds? And yet, despite the slightly sceptical look on the demon's face, I knew the truth. The visions were gone, the power was gone, and all I really had was my angel sight, but somehow I knew, and the thought warmed me.
"Goodbye, Eadoin," he whispered, emotion breaking through. "You're still very special, even without the power. Such a beautiful soul." Slowly he ran his fingers through my hair and my heart caught in my throat as I looked up at him, at the demon that had fallen in love with me and sacrificed his life because of that love. He closed his eyes and the silence fell like a light shroud over us as he pressed his mouth to mine in a soft kiss that lasted for just a moment . . .
And then the rustle of unfolding wings and the swishing of air broke through and I gasped, eyes opening quickly. With a strange stinging inside I watched as the flying figure grew smaller until eventually it faded, and the tears were burning.
"Hmm?" I looked up quickly and heard a light chuckle, and I couldn't help but flush. The warm, golden sunlight was beating down on my skin and pooling across the grass silently, crimson, yellow and russet leaves slowly falling from the trees and dancing through the air on silent wings. April had quickly become August, summer to autumn, and the sunlight was glorious before it faded to darkness. Four months had past, and now the grief had faded into a constant, dull ache.
"What's wrong?" Kit asked with a grin, an almost reassuring hand on my knee.
"Nothing," I answered, squeezing the sandwich in my hand so hard that tuna erupted across my fingers. "I was just thinking about the past."
"Oh," he said, the joy in his eyes fading slightly. And then, in a soft voice he asked, "Anything you'd change?"
I smiled weakly. "Perhaps."
Four months, four painful months, and now it was my birthday and the pain was flaring again. Kit was always there to cheer me up and I appreciated him so much, but he had his own family too and I couldn't forget that. Small fingers wrapped around my own and I turned to see Elisabet's beautiful smile and it was contagious, and I smiled for her. She laughed in triumph.
And here we were, our lives in the light and not the darkness, having a picnic in the park together because it was my birthday and the last days of warm sunlight. Marcell smiled softly and wrapped an arm around his lover, trailing his fingers through almost-silver hair, a slight pain in his eyes. It had been hard for the former demon to get used to being mortal at first, but now he seemed nothing but, and he revelled in everything new he came across. It was a joy to see.
Kit grinned and held up a chocolate finger. "I'll beat you," he said.
"You never beat me," I corrected him. "Not once, not ever."
"Indulge me," he drawled, holding out the chocolate biscuit with absurd confidence. "En garde."
Elisabet giggled and Marcell had to hide a smirk. I rolled my eyes. "How old are you?" I asked, crossing my arms.
"Two hundred and thirty four," he answered without a pause.
Even now, things like that were shocks to the system. "And I thought twenty was old."
I broke his biscuit four times before he admitted defeat, and a soft giggle interrupted us. Kit turned, flushed, and the grin on his face grew so bright that I couldn't help but smile at the sheer love that radiated from him. "I'm sorry, sweetie," he said, crawling towards the pushchair where his young son was sitting, waving chubby hands in pure delight. "Did we leave you out?" Kit un-strapped Elan and gathered the baby into his arms, and in his father's familiar embrace Elan let out another loud chuckle and bounced up and down, smiling, pale blue eyes shining in delight.
Elan had been named after Marcell – his name meant 'fiery' but his look and temperament made him nothing less than a little angel. At four months I still found it hard to believe how big he had grown, but with his pale violet hair and large, innocent blue eyes he was the most adorable baby I had ever seen. He seemed to love everything and everyone and was always smiling and laughing.
Sitting on Kit's lap, Elan quickly scanned everything in sight. He smiled and bounced in joy as his eyes met Elisabet, and then me, and then Marcell, and searching fingers eventually decided the food was more interesting and he reached small, chubby hands for the chocolate biscuits, giggling lightly.
"Hey, he's just like you, Kit," Marcell said with a slight smirk.
"Watch it," Kit laughed, as Elan sucked happily on his prize.
I never remembered turning, but somehow I found myself staring at the corner of the park where, months ago, I had first met Idande. In the darkness his voice had drawn me to him and from then on my life had drastically changed. Closing my eyes, I could still see him sitting on the grass, bathed in moonlight, holy and ethereal and beautiful, but lost and alone too. Slowly fading away as his memories were.
"Eadoin, what's wrong?"
Inhaling lightly in shock I looked up quickly and saw the worried clear-grey eyes of Elisabet, and the concerned gazes of Kit and Marcell. Even Elan seemed to sense something and reached small, desperate hands to me. "I . . . I . . ." I was trembling lightly, and the pain inside was gripping and I choked hard, fought back a painful sob, saw the dreadful realisation in Kit's eyes, and I hated it. I hated this pain, feeling this vulnerable.
"Eadoin," Elisabet whispered, placing a small hand on my shoulder. "Are you . . . are you thinking about Idande?" Her voice broke the silence, and my stomach leapt into my throat, but her voice was full of such innocence that all I could do was nod slowly.
"Yes," I whispered.
She bit her lip hard and lowered her head; dark curls fell around her face. "Sometimes, I think about him too," she admitted quietly. "Every time I remember the angel who brought me back from those dreams, he turns into Idande. I know it couldn't have been him though. Idande was a human, not an angel, wasn't he?"
I smiled very softly and wrapped an arm around the girl. I had nearly lost her so many times. "Couldn't he be both?" I asked her.
"I – I guess so," she whispered. A pause and then, "You loved him, didn't you?"
I tensed for a moment, and pulled away. I could almost feel the concern hanging in the air but the sudden rush of pain and love inside was suffocating, overbearing, gripping and twisting. It was suddenly hard to breathe, my lungs were burning, but I closed my eyes and said, "Yes. I loved him very much, and I always will, wherever he is and whatever he's doing."
Elisabet took my hand in hers and I opened my eyes, feeling the contact, knowing that somehow she could feel my pain as well as I could. My breath caught in my throat as I saw the tears welling up in those familiar clear-grey eyes and I reached forward, gently wiping them away with my own fingers. I didn't want her to cry, but her tears weren't from grief. They were from something else, for something else, and I wasn't quite sure what the bittersweet smile on her young face really meant.
"I think I understand," she murmured, an ancientness to her soft voice. "But you don't have to be apart."
"What?" I whispered, my heart pounding furiously in my throat.
And then the silence was softly shattered by a voice. A song. And it was beautiful and haunting, wordless but powerful, natural, sending shivers across my skin. My eyes pricked with tears and slowly, so slowly I shook my head and the pain inside exploded into a terrible apprehension, and a deep knowledge that was too beautiful to fully accept. Elan began to laugh and Kit's eyes were wide in disbelief and understanding and he smiled so softly as Marcell wrapped an arm around him, around his family, embracing everything he had, and understanding.
"Elisabet?" I questioned lightly, but all she did was turn towards the clearing where everything had started and smiled gently.
I walked across the grass, a burning pain inside my heart, breaths a little too heavy. A sick, dizzy rush ran through me and the nausea, the anxiety was almost overbearing but I entered the small clearing and my heart was pounding and my blood was roaring in my ears. The song was loud and beautiful, and powerful, and it came from a creature that I thought I would never, ever see again, and all strength evaded me and a weakness set in. A boy was sitting on the grass, the green blades gently embracing him, sunlight flickering across his skin and dancing between waves of silver.
"Idande," I breathed.
He turned and looked up slowly, azure eyes burning with tears. At once the song died away into silence, but that was just as welcome, and he was smiling though his mouth was trembling and for a moment I could do nothing but stand and look at him, at this creature, and this man who I loved more than anything, and I hoped to God this wasn't another dream because the utter relief that swept through me was glorious and sweet and I was trembling but I was smiling too and the tears were slowly falling, glinting in the light. "Hey," he murmured. "Care to join me?" The first words he ever said to me, spoken again, and they settled over my heart and threatened more tears.
I took a step towards him but before I could reach the angel he let out a desperate cry and leapt forward, still on his knees, wrapping his arms around my waist and resting his head against my stomach. Oh God, just feeling him there and knowing that he was real, sent another wave of sweet relief through me and I buried my fingers in his silvery hair and held his head against me. My tears were falling freely but I didn't care, because I could feel the dampness of my shirt beneath his cheeks and Idande's light trembling, and I wrapped an arm around his shoulder as he continued to embrace me. "Eadoin," he said, and it was a breathed emotion, I could hear it. I could feel it.
Just hearing my name on his lips made my heart pound and my stomach twist and I fell to the ground beside him so that we were eye to eye, that brilliant azure blue, and he pressed his mouth to mine in a desperate kiss. His cheeks were damp with silvery tears and he kissed me again, this one softer, and another and another until we were lightly brushing our mouths together and his fingers were tracing soft patterns against skin. When I pulled away and rested my forehead against his I said, "What are you doing here?" Reality was crashing down around me.
"Not pleased to see me?" he teased lightly, pressing another kiss to my mouth.
"Leave now," I murmured, "and my life won't be worth living."
Humour fading, Idande looked at me with pain and concern and love burning in his eyes. "I'm not leaving you again, Eadoin," he said. "I promise you."
A pang in my heart, I brought my hand up Idande's back and realised something. He was wearing his silver-white angels robes, soft beneath searching fingers, light against his skin, but there was something missing. "Idande," I whispered, "your wings. I can't see your wings."
A soft silence, and then, "That's because they're not there."
Disbelief bloomed inside and I gripped Idande all the tighter, pulling him towards me, lacing my fingers in his hair. I felt so dreadfully pained for his sacrifice then, and confused, and dizzyingly happy, but the words that escaped my lips were, "What happened?"
He smiled gently and rested his head against my shoulder, entwining his fingers with mine. "The power was inside of me," he whispered. "That's what the angels wanted – to prevent the Destruction and protect the Earth. And the power was safe inside of me, in Heaven, but I couldn't . . . I was so unhappy I was fading away, and the power might as well have been killing me for all the help the angels gave. So I gave it up. I gave the power up – I gave all my powers up. I didn't want them anymore."
"And they accepted that?" I asked.
"They had to," Idande murmured, smiling gently. "I gave them what they wanted . . . and I think that Leilani had something to do with it too. I think she began to make them see that love may make us vulnerable . . . but that it also makes us strong." He laughed lightly and the tears were spilling and I kissed him again and the pain in our eyes was fading.
"And you're here to stay?" I whispered, anxiety gripping my stomach.
"Yes," he breathed, a wave of pure happiness rushing through me.
"And . . . and you won't forget everything like Kit did?"
"No." He kissed me, cupping my face in his delicate hands. "I won't forget, but I'll age and I'll die, and I'll love and I'll laugh, and that's all right, that's all fine, as long as you're with me. As long as you love me."
My eyes were stinging with tears again but they couldn't wipe the smile from my face, and I took his hand and kissed his knuckles gently. "I was going to say the same thing to you," I whispered, and he smiled brilliantly and I pulled myself to my feet and offered him a hand. He took it without hesitation and I helped him to stand, the disbelief and numbness still fighting the sweet relief, but I knew soon it would be broken. "I missed you," I whispered.
"I missed you too," he said softly, squeezing my hand. "So much. I feel like I lived a whole eternity in those four months."
I smiled bitter sweetly despite everything, knowing that he had sacrificed an eternity for me, because he loved me, and that he would grow old and die. But that didn't matter, not now, not when we had a whole lifetime together. And as I closed my eyes an image flashed into my mind, an image of Idande, older than he seemed now, but still achingly beautiful. And cradled protectively and lovingly in his arms were two small dark-haired children, twins, with the most brilliant shining blue eyes.
"Yes?" My eyes shot open and Idande was watching me with slight concern in his eyes, and I wasn't sure why. "What's wrong?" I asked him.
"What did you see?" he asked.
"What?" I said, confusion spreading through my body and gripping my stomach. "I didn't see anything." The vision had faded away like angel feathers, but something, some part of me was tingling inside and even though the images darted and faded, I knew they were there, and I knew I had seen my last vision, and whatever it was had sparked a brief joy inside of me for that moment. Idande smiled softly and everything inside of me lit up and I cupped his face, kissing him gently, breath against lips, I murmured, "I love you."
"I love you too," he whispered back, his voice sending waves of shivers through me.
And I knew then, in that moment, exactly what my grandmother meant when she said Idande was part of my family. Because I loved him, and he was my family, and he would be a part of Elisabet's life too, and my Nan's; they would love him too. "Happy Birthday, Eadoin," Idande whispered, and there were tears in his eyes. Twenty years ago he had first fallen in love with me, on the day of my birth, and I couldn't begin to understand what he was thinking. So I took his hand and with a small smile gently led him towards his family, towards his home.
My name is Eadoin. It means 'blessed with many friends.' And I guess, more than ever, that I really am blessed.
I've seen death and darkness in my life, but with just one smile Idande can erase the pain inside of me. And I know that even without his wings, without his powers or his immortality, that he'll always be an angel.
And it's enough that he loves me.
A/N: I hope that you liked this fic because I had a lot of fun writing it. So please PLEASE if you got this far then drop a quick review and tell me what you think! I'd really appreciate it!
And so ends the first story of my series: the second is called 'Fallen.'
Because of his song, Alex finds himself protected by angels and hunted by demons who want his power. Now he learns that he is a judge, and his love for a demon named Zayn will decide the fate of the world.
It can be found under my bio. I hope you like that too ^_^