I Wish I May

Description: Fang and Jeb spend a night looking at the stars and getting to know each other. A pre-TAE (Kingda Ka) story. Fang and Jeb are two of my favorite characters, so I decided to do a little bonding fic for 'em. Enjoy!

Note: I have decided to call all my pre-TAE oneshots by the nickname 'Kingda Ka' to keep them strait in my head and in my notebooks. Just thought you might want to know. Also Fang may seem a little out of character in this oneshot as I tried to portray him as younger and a bit more insecure.

Fang let his sleek form drop silently from the air as his final circle ended his evening flight. A half-empty pop can sat on the edge of the roof. Fang swept down and scooped it up, taking a long swig of the warm pop before settling down on the edge of the roof of his family's carefully concealed house. They'd been here since March, three months back, when Jeb, a kindly white coat, had busted them out of the school. The sun had just given it's last farewells and a shining moon was slowly rising to take it's place in the dark evening sky. Fang leaned back and watched it, a glowing orb among a hundred blinking sparkles.

"Stargazing?"Fang jumped.

"Dr. Batchelder!" He sat up quickly, causing his head to spin. Fang grabbed the nearest surface, which happened to be Jeb's arm to steady himself.

"Careful there, Fang." Jeb said softly, grabbing hold to steady Fang.

Fang grimaced and noticeably scooted over a few inches, Jeb released his arm.

Jeb frowned and put his legs over the edge of the roof, studying Fang closely. Fang kept his eyes trained hard on the ground. Jeb sighed.

"If I promise I don't bite, I don't suppose you'd lighten up a bit?" Fang turned to stare at him wordlessly, his stone cold gaze betrayed nothing.

"Playing hard to get, eh?" Jeb joked, trying for a laugh.

He should have known better, Fang kept silent.

Jeb took a deep breath. They sat their for a while, uncomfortably side by side, staring at the ground below.

Finally, Jeb decided to ease some tension. "You know, you never answered my question." He said.

Fang stayed silent, then, "What was it, again?" He asked softly, obviously trying to relax.

"Were you stargazing?" Jeb repeated, tacitly keeping his gaze on the ground.

Fang was silent for a long moment. "Yes." He finally answer. It was short, but better then nothing.

Jeb smiled slightly and looked up. "I used to love to do that, when I was your age."

They were quiet for a long time, this silence a bit less intense.

"Dr. Batchelder-" Fang started hesitantly.



"Jeb." Jeb said firmly, finally looking Fang in the eye. For a moment they stared at one another, then Fang broke the gaze to stare down the poor defenseless dirt below. Jeb took another deep breath. "We're not at The School anymore. I don't... I don't want you to associate me with them. We're out here, forming... Well, a sort of family. I'd like to think we can leave formality behind." Jab said softly, still working at the persistent tension.

After a minute, Fang nodded. "Alright then, Dr. Batch- Jeb." Jeb gaze him a comforting smile. They lapsed back into silence.

"Do you know them?" Fang finally asked, staring up into the heavens.

Jeb followed Fang's gaze to the sky. "No, astronomy was never my thing. I have a sister, Lacy. She could name every star in the sky when we were kids. She often would, in fact. Listing things off faster then I could breathe. It used to drive me mad." He turned to look at Fang again, a soft smile on his face. "I could find out, if you like...?"

Fan shook his head. "No, I'd rather we name them ourselves." He said softly. Jeb recognized the invitation and grinned.

"Did you have a particular one in mind?" Jeb asked softly.

"Shadow." Fang said simply, pointing to a cluster of stars.

"Shadow?" Jeb questioned, curiosity overtaking caution.

Fang pointed at the stars again. "Those over there, see? The stars form a cat's claw. I knew a girl once.." He trailed off, then took a deep breathe.

"A feline hybrid back at... Her name was Shadow." It was the most Jeb had heard out of him since they had esacped form Itex.

Jeb nodded, his smile gone. "Shadow, then." He said simply.

Jeb searched among the stars himself a moment, then pointed to another group of sparkles. "Blossom." Jeb said. Fang squinted at the stars.

Finally, the boy spoke. "I don't see a flower." Fang admitted.

Jeb smiled again. "There isn't one. A-Ari... My son loves Power Puff Girls." His voice broke slightly on his son's name despite himself.

"Do you... do you miss it?" Fang asked, his voice barely above a whisper.

"Miss what?" Jeb said quietly.

"Your family." Fang said. He wasn't one to beat around the bush.

Jeb sighed. "Yes, yes I do. I miss calling my mother, I miss spending second Sundays at the lake with my father, I miss my little sister's baby girl. I miss Lacy's brownies and... and I miss Ari." Jeb's voice had also hit whisper level.

Fang met his eye, his gaze searching.

Jeb continued. "I love my son, but... but he is meant for a destiny that I can no longer shield him from you see... He was born... defective. He would have died in the first hour. I had to make a choice. I only pray I never regret it." Jeb release Fang's gaze to rake the stars.

"I love my son. I can't... can't bear to watch him suffer." Jeb took a breathe.

Fan caught his gaze again. "Thank you." He said, the emotion usually concealed carefully behind the mask spilled over, betraying a raw force of gratitude. "I can't imagine what it must have done to you, what it must still be doing to you. You have saved all our lives, I will never be able to repay that." After another moment Fang leapt up into the sky, leaving Jeb staring after him.

"Don't mention it Fang." He said, his head dropping into his hands. "Seriously, don't mention it."