Author's note: Late update, I know. But while viewing the folder where I store my fanfic files, I noticed that the specific chapter was almost ready and needed some final corrections in order to be considered complete.

I am not sure if I will go on with this fic or Turmoil. My Legion muse has been in a dormant state for a long time. And honestly, I feel bad for not updating the stories. I deeply appreciate my readership in Legion section for their support and beautifully elaborate reviews in all three stories I have submitted. I will try to summon the muse back...

Reminder: Paragraphs in italics reflect Michael's point of view and they are chronologically advanced compared to the story.

Complications

Chapter 5

I don't believe there was anyone among us who didn't admire you or ever wanted to see you fall. It was you who rejected us and the life you had, blinded by your excessive pride. You tricked your friends to follow you in an endeavour that was meant to fail and led them to a terrible suffering. This persistent faith in wrongdoing is what brought your existence to downfall. I warned you before the rebellion. But it wasn't enough...

" This place we are going to visit, is far from our abodes, isn't it?"

" Yes. I hope it doesn't bother you."

" Not at all. I only wonder if it's any different from what I have seen so far."

Michael stood near the edge of a high cliff, gazing at the vast ocean that spread before him in a lower level. He wanted to know more about the place he was going to see together with his leader.

" If you are anxious about the time, let me remind you that I wouldn't neglect our work schedule. I may be carefree at times, but this doesn't mean I am irresponsible. Also, don't expect me to tell you any details about our destination, not until we arrive there; There is no point describing anything if you don't see it with your own eyes." Lucifer explained and grasped the opportunity to study Michael's perfect characteristics, each distinct facial line; He kept his hair unusually short compared to other guardians but the chief Archangel liked it because the face, strong, upright neck and even the variety of Michael's tiniest expressions were never hidden in that manner.

" Right. I can't wait to expand my horizons."

The leader smiled widely. " Let's hope that one day we will have the answers to everything. That is something worth looking forward to. A trip is just a trip."

" Not quite." Michael answered calmly, yet confidently. " It's the journey that counts when we aim to achieve complete knowledge and understanding. And there might be things bound to remain a mystery forever, even to us."

" The beauty of a mystery lies in the challenge to unveil it. This is what I think." The light bringer said. He stretched his wings and flew in the air rapidly and smoothly, without distancing himself too much yet. The angel who remained behind, admired the strength and dazzling shine of this supreme being.

" Are you ready?" Lucifer inquired as he turned to his companion. Michael expressed his response with a simple, positive nod; He executed a dynamic launch, something he had planned earlier. When he jumped off the cliff, he let his body dive into the air and then spread his wings in lightning speed, forming a semicircular course as he ascended higher, where Lucifer waited.

" A playful cherub."

" You compare me to an angel of a higher Order? I don't know if I deserve such honour."

Lucifer appeared to be reflecting on something. " I don't think they are above our Order in the sense that you mean. They are closer to God because that is right; Our world would be awry if they resided in the outer sphere where we live - an unsuitable place for these little ones. It is us, grownups, that ought to repel the dangers that lurk in the abyss. Isn't that right?" [1]

A bright smile grew on Michael's lips and he shook his head considerately. " Now I see why you always persist to be the main guardian of the gates. I thought it was primarily your interest in testing your strength, but deep down you have a personal wish to protect the children."

" Ah, it might be so... Well, the truth is, I want only the best for my kind and any of its Orders." He responded. He sought to change the subject. " Anyway, that manoeuvre you did, feels terrible either to watch or perform it myself. Gravity intimidates me; While you think of it as a tight embrace that leaves a wonderful feeling as soon as you free yourself from it, to me is like a force that enchains my limbs. Sometimes I am overwhelmed by this fear: How would I feel if this power vanquished the resistance of my wings, pulling me down and away from the heights that I need to belong to?"

" Lucifer, we will remain where our nature dictates us to exist. Heaven is our home and those wings will keep you there. If something ever happens and you feel that you can't carry yourself on your own, do you think I won't be there to support you however I can? We don't live alone, or only for ourselves. You can count on me anytime."

No other in their community, even those who had been closer to the first angel in terms of friendship, ever expressed such caring interest. The light bearer was considered a phenomenal creation, a near perfection surpassed only by the Maker, so they didn't think that this angel could ever face a moment of weakness, or falter.

Michael was different. He held great esteem for his leader and acknowledged all his strengths and talents, but never treated him as an almighty entity who had no need of those around him. If he was so, God would have placed His first angel somewhere else, alone perhaps.

The soldier continued, " You told me that you have met individuals of our kind with two and three pairs of wings. I have not seen them myself, since I don't have access to their world, but I know one thing: We may have a single pair but as long as we are united, I see no inadequacy. I shall strengthen you when you need it, so have no fear. You once said that you don't want to lose me. Neither do I." [2]

The chief Archangel was familiar with words of praise and admiration but not of love. It appeared that the good feeling he had about this benevolent, strong being proved absolutely right. This spirit, among millions of others, was the match of his own. How he was going to show that to Michael? Was it enough to introduce him to the place he considered as his personal retreat, a hideaway where no one else had been before?

" I don't know how to answer these words from you, Michael... They are precious. Only silence can suffice for now." He explained truthfully. " Shall we go?" He asked then, keeping his voice composed.

They flew over a seemingly endless sea and over many regions that Michael had not seen previously. Their world was blessed with utmost, disciplined beauty. There were also two more superior spheres, two greater plains where different types of angels dwelt. Journeying from sphere to sphere was impossible because each Order had a unique nature, role and purpose and therefore, uncontrollable interference could confuse or disturb a community's spiritual rhythm of development. Only Lucifer had the privilege to visit all spheres freely and associate with any kind of angel, but he was not allowed to be away from his determinate home for long periods of time.

The prudent soldier never felt like he was missing something; The arrangement of spheres was not based on some sort of negative discrimination, it was a vivid portrayal of each Order's advancement and skill, indicating their very own field of contribution and influence.

" It's over there, on your left. An independent part of land, amidst the sea." The guiding one instructed.

Michael looked impatiently towards the location, his eyes scanned it with feverish interest. He wanted to know the place where his companion loved to be, taking in all its traits and smallest details.

It was an island, a small gem upon deep blue waters. The closest piece of land in relation to it, lied far beyond the horizon. The natural environment was pleasing to the sight; High trees with a strong trunk and golden strands kissing the soft froth of waves were the first images that he collected. Lucifer slowed down deliberately, letting his friend choose the exact point of their landing. Michael must have liked the shore, because he headed there forthwith.

The newcomer enjoyed the continuous, delightful noise of small waves as they teased the colourful pebbles and inhaled the air that danced above the sea - it was refreshing and carried a saline sharpness. When he knelt on one knee, he scooped up some dry sand to examine the unfamiliar texture; It was different from the kind of soil he used for the cultivation of plants and flowers inside his garden. A ticklish sense made him smile as the little specks slid through his fingers.

" Although I am not keen on the element of earth, I find sands interesting - especially their origin. These are rocks that were ground into millions of thin particles through a long friction with sea and wind. Reflecting on the alterability of qualities and sizes can be astounding." Lucifer commented, standing uprightly in front of the sea, admiring its vastness. " But, doesn't that also cause you some sort of insecurity?"

" No." The Archangel answered simply as he stood up, " Why it should?"

The prime leader chose to be silent, displaying no hints of his own opinion. Michael was always interested in understanding the members of his Order and knowing their character better; The one next to him was a puzzle. At times, it was difficult to imagine what he had inside his mind. " I trust our Father. Our well-being is never neglected in any decision that He makes." He added.

Lucifer only shook his head vaguely. The soldier was not really disconcerted, his chief liked to analyse things and it was possible that he needed time to complete his own probe.

" I am glad that you believe that, Michael."

" ...You don't?"

" Let's say that few are the things that I take for granted." He stated and began to walk.

" This isn't necessarily bad. Extreme cautiousness is unreasonable though."

" How do you measure extreme? I am as forethoughtful as I need to be. Especially when it is my job to oversee and attend the concerns of an entire community."

" You are not alone in this. Despite what you think, I am sure that the Maker is more than willing to provide you the best support to your causes. He rejoices when He watches you taking care of the angels."

The celestial leader eyed at him darkly and a challenging, instant glow reflected on his face. " What if He stops rejoicing? What then?"

Michael looked perplexed, unable to follow his companion's thinking, his reasoning. He sensed an enigmatic, intense preoccupation though. When their steps halted for a moment, Michael's arms proceeded to draw the sceptic angel into an embrace, surrounding Lucifer's strong shoulders. The light bearer was taken aback at first, feeling intrigued by an unspoken affection again...

" Lucifer..." The soldier's voice was nearly lower and softer than the murmur of the sea as it moved to and fro but the listener could hear, because of their proximity, " You can't live a life full of uncertainty. Just because we don't have the power to view the future, this doesn't mean that we give up trust. When we see that we cannot control everything, it is good to remember to have faith."

The listener felt more at ease as soon as he fixed his own eyes lower, on the neck of the angel. " You mean, we should become passive?" He responded, placing one hand lightly on Michael's waist.

" No. Faith always requires courage and inner strength. It is more than a simple expectation; I learned that well, recently..." The fellow Archangel told him, touching the hand on his waist momentarily as he stepped back. When Lucifer distanced himself too, heading closer to the seaside, it looked like he was seeking to escape from the words...

Or the one who voiced them.

Michael was sure that his chief had heeded the words, but he didn't know how to interpret this sudden withdrawal. Perhaps Lucifer was not pleased to suspect the existence of some feelings that were exclusively directed to him...

" If you really know how I feel and that disappoints you, then you should admonish me openly, not pass by." He thought with downhearted bravery, looking at Lucifer who had sat on the shore.

In the meantime, the sun began to fall, colouring the prime Archangel's blond hair with auburn sheens. Under the reddish light of the sky, his wings looked as if they were made of cotton and silk. The small, colourful gems that clothed parts of them, flashed their colour. Amounts of alabaster skin that escaped the cover of the long, white tunic or silver torso armour, appeared to be unbelievably fragile, seemingly capable of being burnt even by the last rays of the withdrawing orb.

A beautiful creature, grander than the landscape itself.

The force of small waves increased due to the air that was becoming more and more restless as the nightfall went on slowly. Lucifer watched the fellow angel who had stood within the range of waves to enjoy the playful water that reached and sprinkled the lower side of his wings.

Michael joined his companion eventually, sitting down next to him; As he shifted a little to get more comfortable, one of his wings pushed against his leader's. An anxious concern was suddenly displayed on the soldier's face. It was a reaction that Lucifer did not understand immediately and he answered with a questioning expression. Then his attention centred on the outer, thick black feathers which were known to be as sharp as a dangerous blade.

So, Michael was worried that he had wounded his companion by accident.

He did not.

" I am not oversensitive. There is no need to keep those wings unnecessarily far from my own."

" Such risks are not very wise." The prudent Archangel whispered ambiguously while observing the deep blue and violet hues of that section of the sky that was far from the point where the shrinking sun was emitting thin, fiery coloured lines.

" Trust contains risk. And it bares you." Lucifer pointed out, searching the gaze of his fellow angel. He hoped for a quick reaction from his interlocutor, but it didn't happen. It was during that silent pause when he realised that he yearned for another touch from Michael. A decisive one and full of demand, or a gentle and confident attempt. Even an unintended scratch from the sharp edges of those black wings would quieten the fire that stirred inside him...

No, it was more than a fire that could easily calm down with a single contact. There was a deeper feeling that made the prime angel want to hide his face against Michael's neck, to listen to his breathing or move to kiss the angel's uncovered ankle on which droplets of water still glistened.

" But when you want something, very much, what's the point of yielding to your hesitations?" The first Archangel spoke again. His voice was serene but the tone hinted a fervid feeling.

Finally, without waiting for Michael's consent, a broad pair of white wings unfolded with ease and embraced the soldier wholly, without any worries about a likely injury...

XxX

[1] Cherubs are usually depicted as little children in painting and sculpture. According to religious study though, they are fearsome-looking, high-ranked angels who also reside closer to the Maker compared to the Archangels. It is stated that they are portrayed as children because, despite their frightening appearance, they are beings of complete innocence. Here in this fic, I decided to combine these two elements and present a description of younger angels who are inexperienced in battle, yet very respectable.

[2] Depending on the Order they belong, the number of pairs of wings an angel possess vary. Ecclesiastical art, especially in painting, provides such information.