Learn to Fly
Summary: Five times 'Peeta' was Katniss' Guardian Angel
AU. "They say an angel gets its wings when they accomplish a good deed of great magnitude." "But what about you? Will you get your wings back, Peeta?" "Nope, not me. I'm stuck here with you." Implied K/G but very much K/P.
Warnings: Butchered Angel Lore and Lack of Religious Accuracy. Think, Dogma.
Disclaimer: I am not affiliated with any religion and have taken artistic liberty with the interpretation of angels and any higher beings of the sort. Don't kill me.
"You insolent fool." The thundering voice bellowed from above and Peter had never felt as small as he did now. "You have demonstrated your selfishness and utter disregard for life time and time again. When will you ever realize the gravity of your actions?"
"I'm sorry, Father." Was all he could let out, the strength waning from his ethereal body evidence of his misdeeds. He furrowed his wings around his waning form, suddenly feeling cold and powerless.
"No Peter. You are not." The voice held the prospect of judgment and Peter knew that the sentence would not be in his favor. "You fail to learn from your actions and run around amuck like a child. Therefore as your creator and master, I exile you to the Earth of which you have so keenly taken an interest in."
"But Father-" He couldn't help but turn to his surroundings, the pale white and blue so beautiful one would die to see such paradise. He wondered at this moment if this could possibly be the last time he'd see any of this.
"Your words have no meaning to me." His tone was finite, unyielding. "Until you see that true love does not base itself on childish whims and immature displays of power, you will be banished from this Kingdom, never to return until you have paid for your mistakes."
"What must I do to win back your favor?" He pleaded. He was not fond of the saying that mortals had taken such a liking to, but he was aware that he was about to get his very own taste of it.
"I work in mysterious ways." There was foreboding tone to his voice and Peter dare not question him any further. "Now, go!"
With a flash of light, just like that, he was thrown out of the heavens, hurled down into the figurative hellhole that was Earth.
He opened his eyes to see that he was standing in the middle of what he recognized to be an intersection of road, the only difference being that there was no flow of traffic, and instead, a crowd gathered around where a car had crashed and veered off from the road into a post. His brows furrowed, recognizing the familiar form or rather, what was left of a car he had come to be quite acquainted with after the long rounds of observation he was forced to live through for an eternity. He gulped back, fearing the worst, and as he approached the wreckage, the panicked forms of mortals passing right through him, his fears were confirmed.
In the car laid the limp body of the driver crouched grotesquely over the wheel. He was dead. But that was not what had caught his attention. Beside him in the passenger seat of the car was a woman, heavily injured and breathing what he thought would be her last breaths of mortal life, a bundle clutched tightly in her arms.
He felt moisture against the skin of his face and he reached up with a hand to touch it realizing they were coming from his eyes. Tears, his tears. This was mortal sadness he was experiencing as he crouched over the woman's lifeless form, regret filling him to the core. But if he could feel just as a mortal could, why couldn't he do anything? His hands passed right through the woman he fought so hard to embrace, wanting to force the life back into her now clouding eyes. The tears would not stop, and he cursed himself inwardly.
'This was cruel.' He thought. 'Too cruel.'
Had he been banished to the Earth to witness the death of the mortal he had come to care for so dearly? Was this his punishment? He looked up at the sky, its brightness now blinding his semi-mortal eyes about to curse the heavens. But a weak voice distracted him from the sin he was about to commit.
In some sort of miracle, her eyes were trained on his. Could she see him? Was it possible that her dwindling life on Earth allowed her to see past the mortal realm and perceive him in his grief for her?
"My baby." was all the woman let out as she held out her hands to him and he frowned as he looked to see that the bundle was in fact, a child. It was so small and so pure it was pain to imagine that it would grow up in a horrible place such as the Earth and in such a short amount of time, die, like all the others.
Peter could vaguely make out the screams of other mortals as they rushed to the scene, trying to pry the doors of the man-made deathtrap that had caused the driver, and possibly quite soon, this woman's death. But he knew they would be too late, and this woman, with the last of her strength cared only for the child in her arms. She would never know that in a realm not of her own, he would watch her, dutifully, day and night. She would never know of his love, or his actions, or the mistakes that inadvertently led to such dire consequences.
He brought a hand to the child's head and he could feel warmth radiating from its skin when everything else was cold and unfeeling. And as he did so, the woman smiled – a most beautiful smile, heart wrenching as it was – before the force left her, her eyes unfocused and lifeless.
The child wailed loudly as if sensing the departure of its mother's life from this world, its cries echoing the feelings inside what he could only describe as his heart. Was that what they called it? Did he actually have one now? That wasn't possible. He was not mortal, nor was he a higher being any longer. What was he?
"There's a baby!" His hearing alerted him to the chaos surrounding him, the mortals now focused on the young life trapped inside the car. Time went slowly in this realm and he had waited ages until the mortals were able to pry a door open to get to the child, only to find its mother and the driver dead.
As they took the child away, an invisible force moved him along with it. He found that he still possessed his wings, smaller, frailer and barely able to lift him in this realm of the mortals, a dull reminder of what he had lost.
The child was what they called an orphan now, with no one to take care of it. He wondered how it would survive in this cruel place. The life these mortals were subjected to was cruel that way and it was a repetitive cycle he had become accustomed to.
The child had stopped crying by the time it was settled on a bed, its eyes still squinting and unable to see. He had observed long enough to find that it was a she, dressed in a frilly pink dress beneath the bundles her mother had wrapped her in and Peter found it ridiculous how important it was to these mortals to distinguish what they called sex and gender. Her hands were wrapped in tiny woolen mittens and Peter had wondered if everything was cold to him because it was cold to the mortals here on Earth. His eyes narrowed at the baby. Were those enough to keep her warm? He silently wished that he could manage to bundle the baby up tighter against the towel the mortals had left her in and no sooner did he start wondering why he felt the need to do even that.
Mortal feelings were confusing.
Peter had always found mortal babies to be horrendous and disgustingly shaped, yet there was something different about this one in her smaller than normal size. When she opened her eyes, immediately focusing on his scrutinizing gaze, he knew. The intense grey of her eyes resembled that of her mother's, and the focused look the child bore as she stared up at him told him that she could see him. This child could see him.
And as the child's eyes trained themselves on his form, he became transfixed on the smile that escaped her tiny lips.
There was beauty on Earth after all.
Notes: This is shorter than what I usually write. Well, it's a prologue after all.
I got the idea for this fanfiction while I was rereading my volumes of the manga 'Love Monster' and the night before, I had been watching my old 90s collection of movies and came upon one of my favorites, Hearts and Souls.
The tone of this movie very much echoes that of Hearts and Souls, but sort of the other way around. I was also inspired by the movie Dogma, if you've heard of it. I recommend you all watch those. They are beautiful.
I'm not sure if this will go anywhere, but leave me a comment if you want me to continue. Also, while you guys are at it, go and check out my other fanfiction, Music and the Beast. Chapter 6 is up!
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