Disclaimer: Angel Sanctuary belongs to Yuki Kaori.

Warnings: General vagueness and angst. An absenceof characterization?

Notes: I don't know if this even counts as a fic, so perhaps I should label it a ficlet, a fragment of a memory. I don't know why I wrote this fic. Am slightly delusional these days.

Like most of my fics, this isn't a plot-centred piece. Alexiel is talking to Nanatsusaya. I worry that she might not appear to be making much sense.When you look closer, I hope you'll see what she's really trying to say.

I've done something strange with the format here because the fic is predominantly dialogue. I've italicized the narration and actions rather than using quotation marks to indicate speech. Hope I've avoided possible confusion by clarifying that.


FAIRY STORY

Come, Nanatsusaya, I say, and I will tell you a fairy story.

His form moves forward, drifting and wavering in the wind, ever-silent, ever-present. He watches me as always, a soul lost amongst the stars, there but not quite. He listens.

Once upon a time, I say, there lived a goddess. She was a warrior goddess, dangerous and beautiful, honoured by all and admired by many. She lived courageously, in a kingdom of peace, where bloodshed and hatred were nothing but distant utterances, unreachable and unknown.

She was a servant, this warrior goddess, I say. She was willing and self-sacrificing, and she respected her master, as all servants in her kingdom were expected to do. "Remove this mountain," her master would say, "and cast it into the sea." And without fail, the warrior goddess would obey, hanging onto her master's every word, never reluctant, ever-compliant. And this pleased her master, I say, it made her master proud.

But the warrior goddess loved her master. She loved her master more than nature, more than the kingdom, more than the angels who watched over the land. The warrior goddess loved her master, more than she should have, beyond that which the laws had decreed, more than her master would ever allow. And this love enraged her master, I say, it made her master disgusted.

And when her master discovered how the warrior goddess loved him, he locked her up and imprisoned her, shutting her in a dark dungeon, forever isolated from the light of day.

And the warrior goddess cried, and screamed, and pounded the confines of the dungeon with her tear-stained hands. And still the warrior goddess loved her master, more than everything beyond the prison walls, more than herself, more than freedom, more than love itself.

But one day, I say, on the last day before the end of the world, the door of the dungeon opened, and for the first time in eternity the warrior goddess saw her master, unchanged and unblemished, emotionless and silent. And the warrior goddess kneeled at the feet of her master, and she cried the hottest tears she had ever shed. And her master looked down at her and said, "I forgive you."

And the warrior goddess continued to sob, knowing better than to tell her master that all she had ever wanted was to die in her master's arms, in his infinite embrace.

And with a blink of an eye, her master turned her into a butterfly, and the warrior goddess flew away, never to be seen again.

I stop, feel the sound of the sea, the scattering of leaves beyond the window, the beating of his heart, the rhythm of a distant song of tragic endings, of love lost, of unfulfilled possibilities and unachievable dreams.

Tell me, Nanatsusaya, I say. Tell me your fairy story.

He looks at me, his face obscured by shattered shards of darkness and light, eyes filled with so much pain and so much hope and so much promise. As if waiting for an answer, a reminiscence of broken tomorrows, of war and of loss and of everything that can neither be mended nor forgotten.

I love you, he says.

He sits motionless, his shadow unchanged.

His fairy story.