A/N: Yes, by God, I did actually start on that Ryou/Bakura fic that I said I was going to write. It's kind of a side story to Little Angel. Anyways, please read and review!

Disclaimer: Don't own, don't sue. Got it?

The Love of an Angel

Chapter 1

A dark shadow slipped down the corridor, wary eyes glancing over his shoulder often. Silent feet ran across the cold stone floor, weaving around enormous marble columns and half-asleep guards. The shadow had his dark wings folded, fearing that he might be seen or heard if he flew. Dashing up an elaborate flight of stairs, the young, white-haired demon grinned. He had almost made it to the Demon Lord's main vault.

At the top of the stairs were two snoring guards, who the demon quietly snuck past, and behind them were heavy crimson drapes that had a glow of light behind them. The fanged grin widened; he had made it.

Bakura was a well-known thief in the demon realm, and it had been said of him that he could steal any treasure that he set his eye on. Bakura had stayed true to that reputation, and when he heard that a great treasure had been brought to the Demon Lord from far away, the temptation was too great to resist. Rumor had it that this gift, whatever it was, would be a gift to the Demon Lord's heir on his coming-of-age birthday. Rumor also had it that the gift was the most beautiful treasure in all of the demon realm, which had convinced Bakura to overlook the immense danger of sneaking into the palace to steal the treasure.

The demon slipped through the drapes without a sound and, ignoring the gold coins and jewels the size of his palm, made his way to the very back where this treasure was supposed to be kept. He toyed with several ideas of what it could be until he reached the end of the treasure vault. What he saw made him stop in his tracks, speechless.

Tied to one of the obsidian pillars in the back of the enormous room was a young boy with unruly white hair that was much like Bakura's own. The boy also had a distinctly large pair of white feathered wings protruding from his back. He was an angel.

/An angel?!/ Bakura didn't know what to do or think for a few moments. Was this really the great treasure that was being talked about in the streets of the city? Bakura didn't have much time to ponder on the question as he heard a voice behind him.

"Hey! You can't come in here!" Bakura's garnet-colored eyes darted to where one of the sleeping guards, who had evidently woken up, was standing in the doorway staring at the white-haired demon.

Said demon reacted as quickly as was possible. He whipped out a dagger, cut the ropes that were binding the angel to the pillar, and swerved around the half-asleep guard with the angel in his arms. He had just enough time to note that the angel was still bound hands, feet, and wings and was gagged, then saw more guards ahead of him as he ran.

With a malicious smile, Bakura spread his great black wings and was soon zooming just a few feet above the ground with a low, open window as his target. As soon as he was outside, he swooped upward to try and clear the walls around the palace. Black arrows zipped through the air past him, some just inches from his wings or face.

The demon laughed aloud as he heard the frustrated and flabbergasted cries of the guards far behind him, and in a few moments he had cleared the palace walls. He then quickly descended down into the winding city streets below.

There wasn't much traffic for him to worry about at that time of night, so he quickly reached the edge of the city and disappeared into the wild trees of the surrounding forest. He finally stopped in the shelter of a particularly large tree, not wanting to risk flying anymore. The sound of his wings would be much too conspicuous to someone searching for him over the trees, and it wasn't that much farther to his little hideout, anyways.

He watched the skies for a few moments, and saw some black, winged shapes swoop down low over the trees, some shouting orders and commands. Bakura was grinning like a cat as they flew right over him. Most of the guards were either half-asleep or half-drunk, almost all of them had no idea what was going on, and those that did were starting to get blue in the face from trying to explain it over and over.

Satisfied that there was enough chaos within his majesty's imperial guard for there to be no immediate danger, Bakura looked back down at the treasure that he had just stolen.

The angel looked up at Bakura in fear, trying his best to shrink back against the trunk of the sheltering tree. Bakura ignored the angel's fear, trying to set the facts straight in his mind. The treasure was an angel? And the Demon Lord was going to give an angel to his son? Bakura was momentarily disgusted with the notion, then deliberately pushed it out of his mind. He had heard of many similar instances, so he wasn't overly surprised.

Looking down at the angel critically, Bakura noted that, strangely, the angel looked an awful lot like himself. And yet, not so much as one would think at first glance. If one looked deeper, the angel had an air of innocence and beauty that made Bakura realize why this angel had been considered such a valuable treasure. He truly was very beautiful.

The demon pursed his lips, wondering what he was going to do with his newfound spoils. He certainly wouldn't return the angel, of course, because he wouldn't wish the fate of spending a night with the Demon Lord's son on his worst enemy, but also because he wasn't about to give that bastard anything if he could help it. Bakura wasn't quite sure if the angel would be of any worth if he kept him, but…

His train of thought was cut off as he realized that he was wasting time arguing with himself. The entire demon army would be searching for him, so Bakura had to get somewhere safe, and then he could decide what his next move would be. The angel was still looking up at him, shivering from fear and the cool night air.

Bakura sighed, then reached out towards the angel. Said angel shrank back, frightened and jumpy. He relaxed a little, though, as Bakura removed the gag. Seeing his entire face nearly took Bakura's breath away. The angel was stunning. Shaking his head slightly to clear his mind, Bakura asked, "What's your name?"

The angel looked back at Bakura uncomprehendingly for a moment, during which Bakura feared that he and the angel didn't speak the same language, then he said timidly, "R-Ryou."

Bakura nodded, then looked the angel up and down. His body was covered with bruises and half-healed cuts, along with a nasty gash on the sole of his right foot. Bakura also doubted that Ryou's wings were in working order, so he decided that he would have to carry the angel the rest of the way.

Looking back at Ryou, Bakura saw that the look in his eyes was pleading with Bakura to untie him. Bakura hesitated for a moment, and was about to cut the away the angel's bonds when the shouting of guards and the soft sound of wings beating on the wind filled the air above them. Bakura fought down his panic, grabbed the angel, and ran.

It was only ten minutes of running that got him where he needed to be; a few bushes and some trees hid the small entrance to a somewhat small cave that came the closest to being Bakura's home. Most of it he had dug out himself, but quite a bit of it was a natural cave.

Once both the demon and the angel were safe underground and the torches around the room were lit so Bakura could see, he set Ryou down on the small bed in a corner of the room that had various silks and velvets draped over it that he had stolen. Bakura stretched his aching muscles, then proceeded to dig around in his assortment of stolen goods for some food.

Ryou, meanwhile, was looking around the underground room in wonder. The first thing that caught his eye was a pile of pure gold in another corner of the cave, with several statues, goblets, jewelry, swords, shields, and on and on. The torches on the walls were attached with gold, and there was a big silver chest that was next to the golden pile. Ryou could only guess what was inside. There were a few mismatched chairs and a carved wood table in the room, also.

Ryou was brought out of his dazed admiration of the small cave as the demon started coming towards him with a glinting knife in his hand. The angel weakly struggled against his bonds, but they were tied so tightly that it was painful to move. He shrank away fearfully as the demon came closer.

Bakura rolled his eyes. "I'm just gonna let you go, all right?" Ryou nodded slowly as Bakura stepped over, then cut the ropes around Ryou's wrists, ankles, and wings. Ryou slowly began to move his limbs around, having not been able to move them much for days. He whimpered as he tried to move his left wing; he had forgotten about what had happened to it.

Tears sprang into his eyes as pain pulsed through his wing, and his pained expression made Bakura quirk an eyebrow and ask, "Something broken?"

Ryou nodded in answer, and said in a strained voice, "It's my…wing. This one." He pointed to his broken left wing.

Bakura just nodded, and began to prod Ryou's wing a bit. The angel cried out in pain, and Bakura stopped as he said, "I think I might have to reset the bone. Then it'll feel better, but it's going to get a lot worse before that happens."

Bakura looked down at the angel for some sort of affirmation. Ryou looked up at the demon, his large green eyes looking fearful and apprehensive at first, then slowly became trusting. The angel nodded, and clutched the covers on the bed tightly as he turned to stare at a fixed spot on the cave wall.

The demon felt through the feathers until he was sure that he knew what he was going to do, then paused for a moment. That was all the warning that Ryou had, and a loud crack would have resounded through the cave if Ryou's scream hadn't drowned it out.

Ryou barely processed that Bakura was quickly wrapping a bandage around his injured wing, as he was trying to keep from blacking out. The pain eventually faded down to a dull ache, and Ryou relaxed some.

"I hope nobody up there heard that scream…" Bakura muttered, taking a bite of his bread. Ryou almost winced; for some reason, Bakura's words stung, and the hunger wasn't helping any. He hugged his knees to his chest, staring at the floor.

Bakura looked over at the angel, and something pulled at his heart. That didn't happen very often, so it would be fair to say that he was a bit surprised. He looked down at the bread in his hands, then back to the angel. /Eh… whatever./ Deciding that it wasn't like the angel could do anything to him, he said, "Here," as he tossed a piece of bread to Ryou.

Ryou barely caught it, stared at Bakura for a moment, then proceeded to scarf it down. Bakura turned to stare at the wall; for some reason, the angel was getting to him. It wasn't just that he was beautiful, which he was, but he had an air of pureness that Bakura had never truly felt or seen before. He wasn't like the white-feathered aristocrats that seemed to run things in the upper lands anymore, but like an angel from the old storybooks that told how angels were always pure, beautiful, and saintly. Bakura decided that that was exactly what Ryou was; an angel from the old times when saint-like, virtuous angels and noble, lordly demons ruled the upper and lower lands.

What Bakura couldn't figure out, however, was why he was feeling something for the angel. He hadn't felt anything for anyone since he was very young, and after that he had closed his heart to all else that could possibly hurt him, and had thus condemned himself to a numb loneliness. Or, so he thought. Bakura never liked to admit this fact to himself, and always pushed it out of his mind late at night when his mind had nothing else to occupy itself with. For some reason, a little portion of the ice had melted when he looked into that angel's eyes. It was illogical, and that was beginning to irritate the demon.

After unsuccessfully attempting to put all of those thoughts out of his mind, which was what he always thought to be the best way to take care of such confusing ideas, Bakura dared to glance back over at Ryou. The angel had quickly finished the bread that Bakura had given him, and had fallen asleep curled up on the bed. His good wing was wrapped around himself, though he still shivered slightly.

Bakura sighed. "Damn angel probably isn't good for anything…" he said quietly, trying desperately to convince himself that he really didn't care. Against that very thought, Bakura picked up a blanket and spread it over the angel's body. Ryou sighed in his sleep, and pulled the blanket tightly around himself. Bakura mentally slapped himself.

/You're getting soft. You can't let that happen, you know that. Especially not for a gutless, white-feathered weakling like this pathetic creature./

Only half-satisfied with this reprimand of his actions, Bakura flopped down on some of the many cushions that were piled in a corner of the room. Tired of thinking and tired of arguing with himself, Bakura slowly fell asleep.

A/N: *gawks* That, for me, was a long chapter. I can't believe I actually wrote that much! Anyways, ya'll know I need reviews to continue. So review please! ^_^