The Sun & the Stars

The night was hushed, the air just cool enough to bite in a not entirely unpleasant way. Kabaiel flexed his fingers, annoyed by the necessity of the well-worn fingerless gloves that covered his hands. His boots echoed on the pavement as he walked the dark street lit only by quaint, long-outdated gaslights that offered no real light at all.

He stopped as he reached the end of a dead-end road, casting out to ensure he was well and truly alone. He could feel the thrum of people all around, but they were tucked into their houses, distracted by children and television, dinner and work. No one had made note of him as he walked along, and they made no note as he left the cracked and crumbling sidewalk to slip into the woods beyond.

His boots struck litter and the remains of an illegal campfire built by teenagers with a bottle of jack and fireworks three nights ago. Kabaiel flicked his tongue out, tasting the lingering bits of young lust and laughter. He smiled faintly, and moved on, deep into the woods until he tasted only earth and magic.

When he was so deep into the woods that not even moonlight slipped through, he drew off his gloves and tucked them away, then let his magic trickle out. The runes imbedded in his palms flared to life, glowing the same soft silver-blue of his eyes.

The light slowly poured out over the clearing, across the grass to caress the trees before vanishing beyond the canopy. Left in dark again, save for the faint glow of his eyes and palms, Kabaiel waited.

He did not wait long, as an answering pale green-gold light slipped between two trees, flaring for a moment like sunlight on glass, then scattering away in a shower of glittering specks. Kabaiel reached out as the man drew near, their fingers tangling, palms pressed together. “Zerachiel,” he whispered, breathing the word into the mouth that claimed his.

Reaching out with his free hand, Kabaiel caressed the back of Zerachiel’s neck with his fingers, then trailed them down his back, feeling the softness of wings that were and were not there. His own back ached with a loss centuries old but never forgotten, but he ignored it, his attention solely for the honey-sweet flavor of Zerachiel’s mouth.

Knowing fingers pushed aside the edge of his hoodie, slipped beneath the cheap cotton of his t-shirt and slid along his skin. Nails grazed, scoring fine lines, marking. Kabaiel let him, ignoring the risk because they would be gone by morning.

Only four times a year did they meet, when the magic was strong enough to hide them from their brethren. Kabaiel slowly pulled away from the kiss and drew back enough to trace the familiar lines of Zerachiel’s face.

Zerachiel smiled at him, as he only did when they were alone. “Kabaiel,” he whispered in reply, and took another kiss, before gently urging Kabaiel to the ground and following him down.