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That which does not kill me...

...has made a grievous tactical error.

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Wolf trapped
[Ever since Ben has known about vampires, he hasn't liked them much. They smell wrong, they act snooty, and they give him the willies.

That being said, they've been less problematic to him since he started the Hound of God gig. Last time one of them tried to feed from him, it exploded in a puff of dust and bones, like it had consumed a glassful of holy water.

Of course, last time a vampire tried to feed from him, he didn't have six premeditated and callously unrepented murders hanging over his head--and he wasn't stopped on a dusty little planet for refueling and resupply on his way to a "rescue mission" that will no doubt result in more casualties he won't be particularly sorry for.

So he's very unpleasantly surprised when he's ambushed by a trio of vampires as he's coming (alone) out of a seedy little bar. They've got silver shackles and a wolfsbane net, and it takes them less than no time to truss him up, toss him in the trunk of a car, and drive away, while he swears impotently at them.]


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[Ben shivers violently against him.] 'm cold. Hate being cold. [He's in shock, is what he is.]

Are you really here? Is it really you, ge ge? [Not like his traitorous brain hasn't played that particular dirty trick on him more than once...]

I'm here, brother. It's really me

[More Grace. Guri tightens his wings around Ben and Moves them out of this place, back to their seedy little hole of a motel room. He settles onto the bed, still holding Ben like a child.]

[The Grace helps, anchoring Ben like nothing else. He buries his face against Guri's chest and just inhales, shakily. Reaching hesitantly for the wings, he cards his fingers through the feathers like he's afraid they'll disappear if he touches them too firmly.]

...they didn't dust when they drank from me.

[Guriel cringes and buries his face in Ben's hair. He understands, all too well, what that means -- and what it must be doing to Ben's already-shaky sense of Who he belongs to.

He doesn't know what to say. It doesn't feel like anything he can come up with would help.]

[Ben's feeling a little stronger, physically, anyway.

Mentally and spiritually are whole 'nother matters. More shaky breathing, more running his fingers through those beloved feathers.]

For the first time in my very long life, Guri, I wish you could lie. Because then you could tell me that I'm gonna be all right.

I'm afraid I ain't never gonna be all right. Ever again.

[Guriel takes a deep breath. It's not exactly the first time he's wished he could lie. But it's one of a damn small number.

But he is what he is. So he offers what he's able.]

Dad's still Dad, brother mine. And no matter what, He can't ever stop lovin' you.

Him or me neither.

[Ben swallows hard.] I know. [He closes his eyes. Lord, but he's tired. Getting fed on by vampires takes it out of him.] Would you sing for me? Please?

Edited at 2015-06-06 04:48 am (UTC)

Sure I will. You just rest yourself, okay, little brother?

[Guriel bows his head over Ben's and tightens his wings.]

My soul longs for Your salvation;
I put my hope in Your word.
My eyes long to see Your promise;
When will You comfort me?

[Ben relaxes--as much as he can relax, under the circumstances--and huffs out a relieved breath. Guriel's singing soothes him deep inside, even here, even now, and he lets his brother's voice send him to sleep.

There's a sound of wings, and Michael is suddenly standing in the room, leaning on the doorframe. He looks less than happy, and doesn't say anything.]

Edited at 2015-06-06 05:13 am (UTC)

[. . . and Guriel's entire thought process boils down, more or less, to Oh. Shit.

He does at least manage to keep from voicing it. Tiny victories.]


Guri doesn't speak aloud or shift to get up, hoping that the fact Michael isn't using his ramrod-straight General of the Armies of God Posture means he can get away with that much. He doesn't want to wake Ben. His brother needs the rest -- and realistically, he probably doesn't need to see the look on Michael the Archangel's face, either.]

. . . I screwed up, didn't I?

Edited at 2015-06-06 05:15 am (UTC)

[Michael gives him a slow eyebrow lift. He, too, knows just how much Guriel's Charge needs his rest, and he keeps it subvocal as well.]

And how, Guriel, do you think you... "screwed up," exactly?

[He's not using the Archangel Words, the thees and thous of formal speech. Yet.]

[Guriel flinches. He can face down a demon's blade with nothing but a lunatic grin, but that eyebrow cuts him every time.

He lowers his eyes and shakes his head.]

Let him get out of my sight. Took my fury out on those vampires. Let him slide this far.

. . . I don't know, Michael. Pick one.

The vampires deserved your fury, though I do question whether it was all directed at them or not. [That, at least, is (somewhat) out of the way. Michael's next question is very, very gentle.]

Little brother, do you really think you could have prevented this slide? Or stopped him slipping away?

[Guriel doesn't look up; he's a little afraid he's going to lose his composure if he does. Instead he threads his fingers gingerly through Ben's hair.]

Four hundred years of thick and thin. You'd figure if he was gonna heed anyone, it'd be me.

[The words come out a lot more hurt than he wanted them to, and he takes a deep breath. Composure, damn it.]

I know it ain't -- isn't my place to keep him by main force, Michael, I'm not stupid.

I never said you were. [It's a mild rebuke, under the circumstances.] But his wound is deep, little brother, and it festers. He stokes his Wrath rather than dampening it and giving it up to Father.

I am not sure whether he won't hear you, or actually can't, at this point.

And I am not sure that this assignment is good for you. Your wound is deep as well, and inflicted by Benjamin.

Edited at 2015-06-06 06:04 am (UTC)

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