Author's Notes: It isn't at all necessary to have seen the Earthian anime or the manga in order to understand this fic. Pictures of the characters from the anime *can* be found at my site, however, if anyone is interested. I'm going to go ahead and post this, but the pictures should be up soon.
Category: Anime, Earthian, Yaoi, Alternate Universe (AU)
Warnings: minor angst, violence, reference to heterosexual love
Pairings: Aya+Kagetsuya, Miyagi+Aya, will be Kagetsuya+Chihaya/Chihaya+Kagetsuya, Messiah+Chihaya, Sapphire+Blair, MuneyukixChihaya
The moon's light sparkled off black eyes as the raven tilted its head, shadowed beak lifted toward the boy's lips. They might have been about to kiss had those pale lips not been moving, a whisper so soft it reached none but the bird that was perched on the pale hand. Small feet curled around the boy's fingers, black wings absolutely motionless as the bird seemed entirely focused on what was being said. For a moment they seemed to stare at each other, then the boy bowed his dark head and the bird's beak parted, a sharp cry sounding as it spread its wings. It flapped them, not lifting yet, and the boy looked back to it, a smile curving his lips as his eyes glinted in the dark.
It was dark in the man-made park, the trees placed close enough together to cast a deep shadow on the carefully trimmed grass. A man stood just within the edge of the blackness, his pale eyes directed toward the large lake and the boy who stood outlined against it. His light hair would have given him away had the boy glanced in his direction, but he wasn't that worried. At first he had been, and his heart had sped at the sight of the boy's short black hair. The bird was a dead give away, considering the boy was obviously speaking to it. But he was unwilling to jump to such a hasty conclusion, and he wondered if he should move and intercept the others before they were spotted. Miyagi had been the first to return from yet another of their futile searches, and he knew it would be unforgivable if he allowed the others to be seen by a human. If that was what the boy was, he still didn't know for sure.
A soft, light sound reached the man, and he was swayed by the boy's laugh. Any doubts he'd had were almost wiped away; that was not the sound of a demon. Then his eyes widened when the boy's arm lifted, a breeze ruffling the sleeve of his dark coat as he stretched his hand above his head. The black bird took flight with a downward swipe of its wings and it gave another sharp cry. The cry was answered a hundredfold and the man's breathing stopped as the trees above him moved, leaves swept by beating wings. The moon was wiped out, hidden by too many black bodies to count and Miyagi had to physically tear his eyes away, turning his head back to the boy. The black hair seemed darker without the sheen of light, and the boy was watching as the birds flew across the shadowed body of water, that raised arm falling slowly.
There was no longer any question in Miyagi's mind, and he moved suddenly, stepping out of the shadows. His footsteps were silenced by the soft grass, allowing him to approach to within mere feet of the boy before he halted. That dark head was still turned upward, and he stared at him, taking in the short, slight form. He had been too far to see the boy's face clearly, but he had assumed he was young, thinking him human. Now, he fully expected a hideous visage to turn on him and his voice came out low, almost a whisper. "It's late to be out alone," he said softly, "it's dangerous, you know." The boy gave a visible jump, then whirled to face him.
Pale hair reached the man's shoulders, and Chihaya's eyes widened as his heart raced suddenly. He knew immediately, it was an angel. But it wasn't the one he was looking for; he had never seen the man before. Even in the dim light, he could see that the features were not the ones he'd memorized so diligently. His lips curved into a tiny, wary smile, and he inclined his head a bit before blinking slowly. "Hello."
The boy looked nothing like he'd expected, and Miyagi stared at him for a long minute before he could remember himself. His eyes moved from those curved lips upward to dark eyes. They lacked any expression of danger or hate, and he had to remind himself of what was standing in front of him. "Where is she?" he demanded, his eyes glinting as he grasped his anger once more. "Where is Blair?" The boy showed no surprise at his question, condemning him even more.
"Do you know Kagetsuya?" The man jerked back a step at his quiet question, and Chihaya understood how surprised he must be. There was no way the angel could know of his self-imposed mission. He caught pale eyes as he tried to express his intent, but a soft sound caught his ears. His eyes turned, looking over the man's shoulders, and he swallowed sharply. White wings were emblazoned against the dark sky, and his shoulders tensed as he took a step back, toward the water a few feet away from him. The man turned also, following his gaze, and Chihaya didn't wait for the angels to reach them.
The boy had moved by the time Miyagi turned back to him, and he was stunned, motionless as his eyes followed the sudden flow of dark feathers. Black hair trailed down the boy's back, his wings spread out behind him, and Miyagi barely registered Aya's surprised cry as the girl saw what he was looking at. Then the boy looked past him again and Miyagi threw a quick glance to where two more angels had landed next to Aya, their expressions as shocked as hers. But there was no time, wind swept his coat around him and Miyagi clenched his teeth, watching while the boy turned and took to the air. "Damn!"
He could hear the rush of air as the man's wings moved from his back, and Chihaya rose above the lake, daring a look behind him. The girl, and the other two men were still surprised, but the man lifted quickly and they followed slowly. There was no way he could risk trying to explain to so many, and Chihaya's eyes focused on the trees visible across the water. He didn't know what they would do if they caught him, but panic swept over him as he remembered the warnings. She'd told him not to go...
The black angel was fast, but he was younger, and Miyagi knew they would catch up. He was already gaining when one of the others passed him, and relief surged up into his chest when the man caught the boy's arm, arresting his flight. Long black hair whipped in the wind when the boy turned to pull against his captor, and he could see the fear in those wide eyes. Then a familiar sound reached him and his own eyes widened. Pausing, he was mindless as Aya and the other angel passed him. His eyes were on the moon, or rather, on the place where the moon had been.
The white sphere was blocked out by black feathers, and Miyagi threw his arms up as small bodies hit him, pushing against his wings. The birds seemed mindless of their own safety and he knew many died on impact. But they kept coming, so many of them, their shrieks loud in his ears, beaks tearing at him, black eyes piercing with hatred and a hint of desperation. He had never communicated with crows, but suddenly he felt their determination, and it was daunting. Faltering in the air as his wings were hindered, he sank close to the lake. The splash made his eyes snap open as he had a terrifying thought that one of them might have been killed. Ducking the continuing attack, he dove toward the water and he caught a glimpse of a black shape emerging near the opposite shore, barely visible through the mass of birds. It disappeared into the trees, then the birds rose and turned, disappearing in multiple directions. His body felt weaker than he'd ever known, and he looked at the three angels hovering near him. Their shocked expressions mirrored his own. The black angel had escaped.
The blonde man's back was visibly tense, his hands balled into fists at his sides. Miyagi stared at him, and he felt as if the failure were his alone. "We searched the woods, but we couldn't find a trace of him."
"Is it a ransom they're after?"
The man's voice was so cold, and he knew the question wasn't for him. Dropping his eyes, Miyagi let his own voice express his regret. "They wouldn't be looking for you if she were dead, so they must want something. At least we know she's alive." Pale blue eyes flicked to him, and he could see the anger in Kagetsuya's gaze. He couldn't tell if his friend harbored any such conviction.
"If they were going to kill her," Kagetsuya said slowly, his eyes narrow, "they wouldn't have bothered to take her in the first place. They would have just done it." The blonde man nodded slowly, and he gave a soft sigh. There was no reason to blame Miyagi. All of them were angry and upset. This was the first time one of their kind had been kidnapped by anyone, let-alone a black angel. "But why would they wait so long? It's been months since she disappeared..."
"What I can't figure out, is why they sent someone so young to find you." Kagetsuya sat down on the couch, and Miyagi moved to sit in the seat across from him. "And why just him?"
"He couldn't have been alone," Kagetsuya said, shaking his head. "They were probably hiding in the dark, watching you. In fact, they could have just been using him as bait so they could follow you back here."
"I don't think so..." Miyagi frowned, running his fingers through his fine hair as he glanced at the pale carpet of the apartment. "No, I'm sure he was alone. And he couldn't have been more than a teenager, it doesn't make sense. But he was definitely alone. All he had were birds to protect him."
"That's interesting, that they can talk to birds as well. I'm not sure why, but I never thought of that." Kagetsuya frowned as he tried to imagine four angels being held back by nothing more than birds called to a black angel. That any birds, even ravens, would willingly die for a black angel was hard to imagine.
The men fell silent for a moment, and Aya glared from where she'd been listening in the doorway. Stepping forward, she raised her chin, pale purplish hair shaking back over her shoulder. "They were disgusting crows," she said sharply. "It's no wonder they were listening to one of them." Kagetsuya's eyes rose to her, and she crouched beside the man, laying a hand on his arm. "Now that they've shown themselves, we'll get her back."
The girl was trying to comfort him, but Kagetsuya wasn't in the mood for it. They'd come so close to catching one of the black angels, to having one who knew where Blair was. It was infuriating, and he didn't want to be calmed. Looking away, he rose slowly and moved toward the window. It was dark outside, their building being tall enough that the lights of the city didn't reach them. Instead, he had a view of the tops of other buildings, and his eyes were drawn toward the full moon in the starless sky. Then something moved a few feet beyond the glass. Very slowly, he trailed his eyes over the railing of the balcony and his gaze froze on a small shape perched there. Black eyes were looking at him, curved beak turned sideways as the bird perused him. "Miyagi," he said quietly, "look."
The man was slow when he moved to stand next to him, but the bird raised its head in response and Kagetsuya heard his friend gasp. Small wings flitted against the gray city beyond, but the bird remained seated, its wings spread as if it were waiting for something. "Well, it looks like he found me." His voice sounded odd to his ears, but he stared at the small eye turned to him and he could feel a difference. Anger was now warring with hope.
"Ugh!" Smacking her hand against the glass door, Aya grimaced as the raven took flight suddenly. Her glare turned to Kagetsuya, softening when she saw the blonde man's blank expression. "We can go somewhere else," she said quickly. "Or, we can plan an ambush. I know the others are more than willing to pay them back for what they've done."
"No," Kagetsuya murmured, his eyes still glued to the railing. "I'm not going anywhere. If he's coming here, then I'll be waiting."
The temperature was much too low to be outside in wet clothing, but there wasn't much choice for him. Leaning against the wall of a building, Chihaya plucked at the damp sleeve of his jacket, wincing as he pulled away a string of something. The water he'd fallen into hadn't been that clean, and he didn't want to ask what it was, dropping it quickly. Focusing on his discomfort, he wrapped his arms around his waist, shivering and crouching behind a dumpster. The smell was bad, but at least it blocked the wind that swept through the alley. A few seconds passed, and he let out a quiet sigh as his shivering didn't still. It wasn't the cold that was getting to him, he was scared.
He didn't know what to do, and he was irritated with himself. When he'd decided to go, he'd thought it would be easy. He'd just find Kagetsuya alone and tell him. He hadn't expected so many angels to be with the man, and he should have. With one of their own missing, they must have gathered together in hopes of finding her. He knew he would have if he thought a friend of his had been kidnapped. "He must be so worried," Chihaya whispered, watching his breath as it rose in a pale mist. There really wasn't time to be sitting around, and he knew he had to get to the man before the angels warned him. If he was going to catch him alone, time was short. A chirrup sounded above him, and he looked up to see a familiar form resting on the edge of the dumpster. The bird peered down at him for a second before hopping to the hand he raised.
"I didn't get a chance to thank you," Chihaya whispered, moving his arm so the bird was close to him. It turned its head so one eye focused on him, and he smiled. Crows fed off the world's refuge, and he remembered Sapphire telling him to be extra kind to them. People gave the birds no appreciation, but he'd found them to be extremely dedicated. He'd just been thinking how little time he had, but he couldn't help but spend a moment on the creature. And he did owe it his life. Its head tilted as he brushed a finger over its neck, lifting the downy feathers in a way that made the bird shiver. "You came so far with me. I'm sorry...for your brethren." Shifting, the bird turned its head, focusing one and then the other eye on him before flapping its wings as if in reproach. "Oh! You found him...?"
They saw him from the rooftops, almost a block from the apartment complex. It was odd that he came so openly, walking down the sidewalk where the streetlamps illuminated him. That was his second mistake, his first was that he'd come at all. There was no way they would allow him to reach his destination, and they intercepted him as quietly as possible. Humans walked the streets still, and they couldn't risk drawing attention to themselves.
The lights made him uncomfortable, as did the city itself. But it was dangerous in the alleys, and as accustomed as he was to the darkness of the country, he couldn't follow the raven's flight without staying in the open. The bird had flown ahead, hovering down the busy street, and Chihaya stepped quicker, his eyes on the tall building as he marked his target. There were more people awake than he'd expected, and he found himself moving farther from the road, the fast-moving vehicles making him nervous. He'd simply never been in a true city before. His friend had landed high on the building at the end of the street, the light from the window making the black feathers shine. Focused on that, he stumbled when someone bumped into him, and he turned in surprise, blinking as the woman continued by without so much as glancing back at him. He didn't notice how close he was standing to the alley, and he let out a muffled cry when a hand closed over his mouth.
Chihaya struggled when he was carried down into the alley between two buildings, but he stilled as soon as his eyes registered the two men. They were the angels. The man holding him let go suddenly, shoving him back against the wall, and he flinched at the hateful glow in those pale brown eyes. The other one stood back, arms folded over his chest as he also glared. Yet again, he didn't know what to do.
The soft curse gave no warning, and he reeled against the wall when he was struck. Gasping in shock, Chihaya pressed his palm against brick, blinking at the dark cement beneath him as he tasted blood in his mouth. It was uncalled for. The thought repeated itself and his head jerked back so he could look at the man. Light brown hair fell into the man's face, but he could see glaring eyes. Neither of the two angels moved, and he straightened slowly, resisting the urge to touch his face.
The boy looked surprised. In fact, if he hadn't known any better, Muneyuki could have sworn he saw anger in the boy's dark eyes. He had no right to be angry. "Where is she?"
Chihaya knew the man wouldn't understand, but he'd promised not to tell. He couldn't tell or they would take her back. Shaking his head, he looked to the angel standing behind the brown-haired one. "She's all right." Pale eyes narrowed at his quick words, then his attention shifted and his breath left him as the man hit him again. He fell, one arm curved around his stomach, and he could feel himself panicking. Then a hand clutched the cloth at his throat and he found himself lifted, shoved against the wall again.
"That's not what I asked!" A hand touched his arm, but he shrugged it off, throwing a furious glare over his shoulder. "He came for a reason," Muneyuki reminded the man before turning back to Chihaya, "Why? Did you come to gloat? Or is it a ransom you're after?" The boy was staring at him as if he'd gone crazy, and he lowered his voice suddenly, leaning close to those wide eyes. "You were looking for Kagetsuya, isn't that right? Why?"
"I have to tell him something," Chihaya answered, doing his best not to show how much the man's hold hurt him. His feet weren't even touching the ground, his coat closed around his neck tight enough to make it hard to breathe. "I just came to give him a message."
"I'll bet you did. And how did you know his name? Did you beat it out of her?"
The man's voice rose as he spit the accusation, and Chihaya closed his eyes as he was thrown to the side. There were empty crates in the alley and he fell hard against one, the sound of it breaking about the only thing that kept him sane. Pushing himself up, he looked at the two men, not bothering to get to his feet. "You have it wrong! No one's hurt her, we would never hurt her! Blair..." His voice trailed off when the man advanced on him and he raised his arms, blocking the worst of the blow. He was still knocked to the ground, and he remained still. There was no point, they wouldn't listen. But then, he hadn't come so far only to give up. It didn't matter if they believed him or not, he didn't even know who they were.
Crouching over the boy, Muneyuki grabbed the back of his damp coat, lifting him easily to his feet. Chihaya wavered for a second, then turned to look at him and he glared at the boy's solemn expression. "You can spout all the lies you want," he said quietly, "but you can't change what you are. Your kind..."
"I need to speak with Kagetsuya."
The boy's voice was soft, but those eyes bore straight through him as if he held no power at all, as if he was of no consequence. He heard Kageto shift behind him, and his hands balled into fists. He knew what the man was going to say before the words left his mouth.
"Maybe we should-" Kageto's words were drowned out by an angry cry, and he flinched when the boy fell back, as if he'd received the punch. A hoarse shriek rang above him, and he tore his eyes away from the motionless boy as a dark form darted past him.
His left eye was on fire and he couldn't seem to move at all. But he heard the rustling sound as the crow lighted on his chest. The man was saying something, but it didn't register as he forced his own voice to work. "No...don't die...go. Now, hurry." For a second he was sure it wouldn't listen, that it would die in a vain attempt to protect him. Then the tiny weight lifted, his hair brushing his cheek as it flew off. The last things he heard were low caws ringing in his ears and a muttered curse.
Sneering, Muneyuki glared daggers after the bird. Then he crouched over Chihaya, pulling him up by his shirt. The boy was limp and his head fell back, his eyes not even flickering.
"You...didn't kill him, did you...?" A loud sound made him turn, and Kageto's eyes widened when he spotted Miyagi. The man's pale eyes were huge, and he looked back to the black-haired boy, swallowing sharply.
"No...what have you done?" Shoving forward, Miyagi knelt beside Muneyuki, his eyes glued to the motionless form. The man released his hold, the boy's head striking the cement as he fell. "Damn you! What are you thinking? If he dies, we'll never find Blair!" Brown eyes met his for a second, then the man stood and turned his back.
"We didn't mean to kill him," Kageto said quickly, flinching as Miyagi's gaze fell on him. "We were just so angry, and he wouldn't tell us where she was..."
His hand was on the boy's cold neck, and Miyagi gave a sigh of relief when he found a pulse. Leaning forward, he lifted the boy carefully as he managed to calm himself. He couldn't really blame them for wanting to take revenge on the first black angel they found, especially considering what must have been done to Blair. But he knew Kagetsuya would kill them all if he lost what he saw as his last chance to find his sister. The man had hope again after months, it would tear him apart if the boy died now. "You can explain that to Kagetsuya," he said sharply, glaring at Muneyuki's back since the man had yet to face him. "Until then, I suggest you pray he wakes up."
Aya and Kagetsuya were sitting on the couch when he entered the apartment, and Miyagi felt a twinge of jealousy. The girl's eyes were glued to the tall angel, and he was glad when the man caught sight of him and stood quickly. Kageto shut the door behind him, not entering, and Miyagi waited till Kagetsuya could reach him. Those pale blue eyes were dangerous-looking, but also wide.
"What happened?" Kagetsuya halted a few steps away from his friend, his eyes on the dark-clothed form. He couldn't see much of the dark angel, but the black hair where the boy's face was hidden gave him away.
"You brought him here?"
Aya's eyes were wide, and Miyagi gave her a sharp nod. "He's no threat, there's nothing to worry about."
"How can you say that?" The man stepped past her, and Aya turned, her eyes wide with disbelief. Then Miyagi laid the boy on the couch and she winced at the bruised face. It wasn't sympathy, but he looked awful. "What's wrong with him?"
Catching Kagetsuya's eyes, Miyagi straightened slowly. "Well, it's really not my place to make excuses for them. But he's still alive."
The boy looked small, lying on the tan couch, and Kagetsuya had to stare at the short black hair. He actually had to remind himself that there was no reason to feel outraged on the boy's behalf. "He's just a kid." Miyagi nodded beside him, but his eyes were caught on a glint near the boy's neck, just glimpsed above his dark blue shirt. He barely registered the odd dampness of the cloth as he pulled the gold chain out of the shirt, then his eyes narrowed to slits. His hand curled into a fist around the small locket and he was about to break the chain when the boy moved, a cold hand holding his wrist.
"Please...don't break it. She'd never forgive me."
Miyagi's gaze flew to him, but Kagetsuya stared at the boy. Violet eyes blinked slowly, and he jerked when they stopped on him, widening quickly. He didn't know what to make of it when the boy let out a soft sigh and smiled at him.
"Kagetsuya." The blonde man was staring at him as if he'd grown a second head, and Chihaya gave a small smile, wincing slightly. It hurt to lift his head, but he managed, his fingers fumbling over the clasp of the locket. No one moved when he turned onto his side, and he pushed himself up, sending a quick look to the couch he was sitting on. His clothing was bound to stain it, but it didn't matter. He looked back at the blonde man, his smile widening as he stared at the familiar features. "She said you were beautiful, but you look different with your hair so short." The man blinked sharply and he tilted his head. "But I'd still recognize you."
"Blair..." The boy nodded and Kagetsuya glared suddenly, not sure why he felt so confused by that smile. "Where is she?"
She'd warned him of her brother's quick temper, and Chihaya ducked, not quite raising his hands. "She's all right!" The man hadn't moved and he lunged forward suddenly. The pale blonde man who'd chased him before was there, and he took a sharp step in his direction when Chihaya put the couch between them. But the man paused when he didn't run. Kagetsuya was simply looking at him, and he glanced at the girl. Her expression was filled with distaste and mistrust, as if he were some sort of bug. His eyes flicked back to the blonde. "She's fine, but she wanted me to tell you something. In private."
"What? There's no way we'd trust you!" Aya's eyes widened when Kagetsuya nodded sharply, and she jerked away as Miyagi tried to catch her arm. "You can't, Kagetsuya..." The blonde man turned to her, and she blinked at the slow smirk that curved his lips.
"I'll be fine," Kagetsuya said slowly, nodding to Miyagi. The girl's mouth opened as if she would argue some more, but she finally closed it with a dark glare.
"Don't you try anything," Aya warned, irritated when the black-haired boy smiled at her. Miyagi was still holding her arm and she shook him off, stalking out of the room by herself. The man followed.
The boy looked relieved, and Kagetsuya nodded to him. "Tell me."
"I know you think we kidnapped her," Chihaya said quickly, resting his palms on the back of the couch as he looked at the man. "But the truth is, Blair ran away with a friend of mine. She's in love. That's why she didn't want me to tell anyone but you, she said the others wouldn't understand and they'd think badly of you. But it's true. She's happy where she is. She said not to tell anyone where, though, because you'd take her back to Eden." The man was staring at him, his expression blank. "She didn't want you to mourn for her, that's why I promised to tell you."
"I want to see her." The boy shook his head, but Kagetsuya remained calm, his voice low. "I have no reason to believe you, but even if I did, I want to see her for myself. If you really came here because she wanted you to, then you should understand that I have to see for myself. How do I know you aren't just saying this?"
"Why would I do that?" Kagetsuya didn't answer, but he'd already dropped his eyes. He *did* understand how the man felt, but he'd promised not to tell. If Blair were taken to Eden, a planet reached only by white angels, she'd never be able to get free again. Besides... "I can't tell you where she is," he whispered, his arm curving around his waist. "It's too dangerous for her...and us."
The boy's hand brushed his forehead, and Kagetsuya could see a smear of blood as Chihaya stared at his fingertips. It was obvious what thoughts were going through the black angel's mind and he shook his head. "Just me."
"No." Dropping his hand, Chihaya's eyes narrowed. "I won't tell you where they are. I promised her I wouldn't, and I won't risk endangering anyone else."
"I could make you tell me." The threat was groundless, and he regretted it immediately. Violet eyes snapped to him, and he could have flushed at the incredulous expression on the boy's face. He wasn't a bully, and threatening more physical harm was no way to reassure the boy.
Chihaya straightened slowly, frowning at the man. It was so disappointing. He couldn't believe the angel he'd spent the last month looking for was just as bad as the other two. "Blair is fine, she's happy where she is. She doesn't want you to mourn for her as if she'd died. And...she loves you." Kagetsuya didn't react to his words, but he wasn't waiting for a reaction. Shoving away from the couch, he let his eyes fly around the room, then he bolted for the glass doors that led to the balcony.
"What?" Kagetsuya jerked when the boy ran toward the doors, his own movements stilted as he was startled by the abrupt flight. Then the boy threw his arms up and dove through the glass. The sound was loud in the small apartment, almost melodic as shivers of glass fell on the patio outside. Chihaya remained crouched for a long moment, then his wings unfurled, long black feathers sparking in the dark. Only once had he seen a black angel, and Kagetsuya stared at the wings, the long fall of dark hair down the boy's back. Then he shook himself roughly, running forward. The boy seemed to spring onto the railing and then launched into the air. Revealing his own wings, Kagetsuya followed quickly. His wingspread was wider, making him confident that he could catch the boy. But there was no need as the black angel pivoted suddenly, flying back to him with wide eyes.
"Sorry!" Reaching the man, Chihaya snatched the gold locket out of Kagetsuya's hand. Blue eyes stared at him in surprise, and he flitted back a bit. "I'm sorry, but Blair would kill me if I left it. I promised to bring it back to her." He frowned when his arm was caught, and he could see two shapes on the balcony, watching them.
"Wait," Kagetsuya said quickly, forcing his voice to sound reasonable. "You could take me to her. I just want to see her." The boy's eyes seemed to calm suddenly, and he had a wild thought that he was getting through to him. To reinforce the fact that he meant no harm, he released his hold. "I won't hurt anyone." His jaw tightened when Chihaya raised an eyebrow at him, then he let out a gasp, his arm reaching toward the boy. Those violet eyes closed suddenly, black wings folding back, and he dropped like a stone. He was frozen in shock. He should have caught him, but he remained motionless as the boy fell down toward the darkness between two of the buildings. Kagetsuya was certain he'd passed out until the boy's wings shot out again, jerking him from his fall. A sharp cry reached him as the boy was twisted by the air, then the angel disappeared into the blackness.
He heard the wings in the back of his mind as Miyagi took to the air, but he was already flying down, a growl echoing in his throat. It was hard to see in the dark alley, and he lighted on the cement ground, his eyes flying around him as he searched for the boy. The alley was empty when Miyagi landed beside him.
Stepping away from the furious man, Miyagi bent and lifted a long feather, touching it with one finger as his eyes winced at the blood on the wall. "He needs to work on his landing," he said softly.
Kagetsuya thought of how the boy had jerked to the side when he set his wings out and he looked at the feathers dotting the ground. "He must have hit the building." He looked toward the street closest to them, but he could find no signs of the boy's passage. "He won't be flying back to wherever he came from. We can find him."
"We'll start looking immediately," Miyagi said. His wings folded back, then disappeared into his back. Kagetsuya did the same and they walked toward the street.
"He can't have gotten far," Kagetsuya said tightly, still angry at how close he'd come. Miyagi nodded again and he laid a hand on the man's shoulders, his eyes narrowing. "Don't touch him this time. Just find him."