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'The Devil You Know' is Remixed (rewriting the same plot and characters in a different way- with author's prior permission) from 'Angels' by [livejournal.com profile] hafren


Avon's been quieter than normal on this visit to Sarkoff. I wouldn't say it makes me nervous, but it does make me slightly concerned. His sarcasm is closer to wit than invective. Is that a good sign? Does it simply mean that he's relaxed for once? I'd like to see Avon relaxed. On the rare occasions he's not tense as a bowstring, he's quite good company.

Or does it mean that his mind is occupied planning something I won't like? This is a peaceful, civilized world, where his skills could earn him a more than comfortable living. I can't very well ask, "Does this look like a good bolt-hole, Avon?" Out of sheer perversity, he'd probably say 'yes'.

So I take him for a walk in the snow. He protests, but he accompanies me. That tells me something, but I'm not sure what. A sudden noise makes him whirl like a startled deer. So it's not that he's relaxed. Well, if he wants to leave, I wouldn't try to stop him even though I need him. Still, it's such a beautiful day I can't help but feel good.

If he's going to leave, let it be like this, with no anger between us.

The smooth, clean snow draws a memory from the past. It's a good, simple memory with no pain attached. I'd like to share it with Avon. I suspect his childhood had few uncomplicated pleasures.

It's good to let go and be childlike, from time to time. I trust myself to the snow. It feels as good as I remember, the brief flight, the caress of cold catching me, the crystal blue of the sky above as I move my arms to make wings. I'm feeling mildly giddy as I make a second angel and Avon helps me up, his fingers warm against my chilled ones. I want to share this with Avon. I make a third angel, inviting him to join me.

Naturally, he chooses that moment to get cold feet. You'd think I was asking him to take on a squadron of troopers barehanded. Angry, I ruin my angel, and, feeling childishly hurt, I childishly dare him.

Of course, then he does it. And does it without flinching. I feel a surge of affection for him as he lies there, dark against the snow, eyes wide and startled. I help him up, and now I am warming his chilled hands. His angel is perfect.

We stroll for a while longer. Avon is still quiet, still thinking, but I'm not worried about him leaving me. I don't know why, but there it is; he's not leaving. I know Avon better than he likes.

I like him better than he knows.

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December 2011

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