Categories > Celebrities > The Used > Broken Feathers

Broken Feathers

by MikeyMemories 0 reviews

Bert McCracken leads a completely ordinary life. He is seventeen, living with his parents and missing his friends. His life is perfectly normal. Until the day he nearly dies, and meets a not-so-an...

Category: The Used - Rating: G - Genres: Fantasy,Humor,Romance - Warnings: [?] - Published: 2010-08-28 - Updated: 2010-08-28 - 3057 words - Complete

It was cold when Bert woke up. Cold and too dark to be fully morning. Groaning, he rolled over again into the warm indented pillows, pressing his face into the gap
between the two pillows on his queen size bed. He sighed and sank slowly back into sleep, vaguely wondering what had woken him.

The next morning, he woke quickly, sitting up on his elbow in bed. He pressed a hand to his forehead. He was cold and sweating. He sank back onto his pillows, panting
from the horrible nightmare he'd just had. He searched his memory for it. It was fading fast, he could barely remember it. He grasped the last dredges of his dream and
thought about it laterally. Water! There was water and his ...someone, someone belonging to him was sinking fast and he couldn't save them.
Bert shook his head slowly and attempted to get back to sleep, curling his back against the cool wall and wrapping the blankets securely around him.
Thirty minutes later he opened in eyes in frustration. The dream was haunting him again and he was pissed at it. He couldn't even remember it, why was it still
upsetting him? He rose, giving up. At least it was the summer holidays, he had no school or, as he worked in the school; no job to go to. He was free, no bothering to
dress yet, he wandered down the stairs and into the kitchen. He poured some coffee and pushed down the bread in the toaster, rubbing his eyes. He ran back up the
stairs with his coffee, and ran straight into his bedroom door. Literally. Rubbing his forehead, he tried again and remembered to open the door this time. In
his room, he stood in front of his bed, tugging on jeans and a hoodie top. Lacing up his sneakers he hopped back down the wooden staircase and into the large, open
kitchen. He grabbed his toast and opened up his laptop, still frustrated at his dream and tired from interrupted sleep. He booted up the computer and checked his
deviantART page. When that was done, he could usually play around on the internet for a while, reading listening to music or just playing around. Not feeling like he
had the patience to just chill today, he turned off the laptop and went to sit at his piano. He played a few notes and then slammed it down in anger. He would take a
walk, he decided. Burn off some excess energy and then maybe he would be able to relax. Standing at the window, he eyed the driveway and the street it lead to and
then eyed the trees leading into forest behind the yard. Forest he decided, grabbing his mobile phone and running out the door.

Deep in the forest he wandered off the path sometimes, following the seemingly random tracks of foxes and wolves and humans through, but always returning to the main
path. Bert sighed, it wasn't working like it used to. But back when it always worked, Bert had Jeph and Dan to walk with and joke around with. But since they had
discovered their sexuality and apparent love for each other, they had moved in together, happily ignoring the illegality of this action, given their youth. He hadn't
seen them in a while. He missed them; they had always helped tire his manic energ- Bert screamed, tumbling straight off the top of the steep hill. He had not forgotten
the mountain, but it was another ten minutes walk! Unless, he supposed, he had wandered across another side he hadn't discovered before. Bert fell quickly, the ground;
dotted with strong trees looming up to meet him. He searched desperately for something g to stop him. There was nothing! Bert closed his eyes and blindly reached out.
His fist came in contact with something. Something that ...grabbed him? Bert gasped when he stopped moving, his lungs begged for oxygen; having gone without it as the
air whooshed past him, stealing his breath. Bert dangled, and opened his eyes. Shock almost overcame him and he nearly let go of whatever had saved him from his death.
It was an angel, Bert supposed, not knowing anything else that would have wings like that. "Hi," The angel greeted cheerfully, apparently forgetting that he was still
dangling Bert over trees and ground at don'twannaknowhowmany feet. "Ground!" Bert shouted at the winged angel, not entirely sure if he was warning him about it, or
asking him to deposit him on it. "Oh, right, sorry. Ditz," The angel pointed at his own head and cheerfully dumped a shivering Bert onto the ground, back where he had been walking. The angel jumped down from the air and smiled at him. Bert took a deep breath. "What are you?" He asked.
A small frown creased the angel's face and Bert wondered if he had said something wrong. "I'm a's a long story."
"I've got time, " Bert pointed out. The angel ran a hand through his blonde hair in a very un-angelic gesture. "I'm half-Soter. My father was the original Soter, and my mother was Panacea, the goddess of healing. I am Weird-ass mix of two gods; like my father and mother and I was supposed to be a god," his face darkened. Bert crossed his ankles. "But they hunted me from Oropus, because of my parents," The blonde's face saddened and he seemed to spot Bert's confusion. "Oropus is the temple my three sisters own. My mother lived there before she was hunted. I'm not sure about my father, but my mother told me he was killed long before her. Do you know what a Soter is?" He asked and Bert, feeling blind-sided shrugged. "It's a god of safety. Preservation and deliverance from harm. Ktesios is hunting me. Oh, and my name is Quinn. It's Greek, it means wise, fifth born and er...queen," he stared at the tree. Bert snorted, "Queen?"
"Unisex name!" Quinn defended himself and Bert nodded slowly.
"Uh-huh. I'm Bert. Thanks for the whole life-savey thing, by the way. "
Quinn puffed up in pride."Yeah, I kinda rocked that, didn't I?" He said proudly. "Sure. Wanna go on?" Bert gestured for him to continue, stifling his own disbelief. "Alright; from the beginning. My father was a god. He was destined to marry Persephone, but then she wasn't cool, kind of crazy with the whole I-lose-my-beloved-daughter-to-
Hades-six-months-every-year, you know? And he wasn't really into her. But then he met my mother. She was a goddess. Her whole bag was healing. She was beautiful, he was handsome and strong, la-di-da, they fell in love and had me. But then my mother was taken and my father was forced to marry Praxidikai. They had my eldest half-
sister, Eupraxia; who became the goddess of good conduct. Ktesios was born next; he was the god of property, of the house. He overtook my father after Homonoia and Arete were born and killed him, so sang my mother, who was kept in the house and never allowed out. Their mother Praxidikai, ironically the exacter of penalties, ignored the murder and- this is gross, sorry- married her son."
"Ew," Bert said, too shocked for anything else.
"I know. Anyway, when Ktesios took over Oropus, he declared my mother and father, traitors to the destiny, and ordered my mother to be hunted. They were, and before my father was apparently killed, my mother found out and saved me by giving me to her good friend Nicholas of Myra. Known now as Saint Nicholas,"
"Your foster father was ...Santa Claus. Right. Of course."
"No, he was only called Santa because he was the patron saint of children, used to leave coins in shoes of people who left them out for him, gift giver etcetera, you
know how these things happen, "
Bert nodded slowly, "Of course, " he deadpanned.
"Santa Claus doesn't exist." Quinn explained, looking at Bert as if he was just being silly. "My mistake. Of course. How could I be so stupid?" Bert said dryly.
"Anyway, I was sent to Ireland with Nic, and I lived there. But soon after, he was killed by an old rival. I was sent to Cúchulain. He was an awesome Irish warrior. He taught me to fight. Not long after my fourteenth birthday, I got wind of my mother's murder at the hands of Hunter Sanik. Looking for revenge, I travelled to the depths of the forests in Italy to find him. After months of searching and living in the wilderness, I found him and killed him and returned to Ireland on the eve of my fifteenth birthday. I spent two months there, and then I was hunted out. Sanik's sister Salik wants to kill me for killing him,"
"But he killed your father!" Bert protested, standing up. He sat back down heavily on the ground with a thump. "What's wrong?" Quinn questioned.
"I just realised I believe you," Bert said quietly.
"Ah. You humans," Quinn shook his head fondly.
"How old are you? Why haven't I heard of you? Or things like you?" Bert fretted.
"I'm sixteen, and I am not a 'thing'," he scowled.
Bert bit his lip, "I'm sorry, I didn't mean it like that; I don't think you're a thin-"
"Whatever," Quinn frowned, picking at a piece of moss. He muttered something that sounded vaguely like "So gracious to me for saving his life..."

He folded his wings behind him in annoyance. Bert took the time to admire them now, they were ...beautiful, Bert supposed. They were a dark, dark red, flecked with black, thick
feathers that he longed to touch and press his fingers into. They fluttered slightly in the wind and he tucked them into his shoulder blades. Bert looked; Quinn wasn't dressed in much; tight pants made of a strong-looking, foreign material and shirtless. He had a black leather strap wound around his neck and blonde hair grown in the front but sheared short in the back. Bert stood beside him, and sat. "I'm sorry. I didn't mean to insult you or whatever." Bert felt horribly ineloquent next to Quinn.
Quinn used modern words, but he spoke with an educated, old lilt to his voice. Quinn ignored him and sniffed. Bert patted his shoulder to get his attention and was
surprised by his dry skin. "You seriously need some moisturiser," he attempted to joke. Quinn looked at him.
"Do you know what moisturiser is?"
Quinn shook his head. "I don't interact much with humans. Unless I'm saving them. That's become a habit," Quinn smiled. Bert smiled back, relieved. "Your wings are beautiful," Bert offered.
Quinn stood up quickly and grasped Bert's chin between his thumb and index finger. He held up up and looked it to his eyes. Bert's brows furrowed as he met the searching burn of the angel's gaze. "You can see my wings?" Seeing Bert's look of confusion, Quinn went on, "Humans don't see my wings." Quinn chewed his lip in deep thought.

Bert asked, "Don't? Or can't?" Quinn smiled, releasing his face. "Astute, too. They could see if they wanted to, but they don't want their fantasy of a perfect world run by humans ruined. We've always been there, but your people have been too afraid to look. We don't thrive in the human world, we're not meant to be a secret locked in someone's subconscious."
Bert nodded slowly.
"I don't know why you can see my wings," Quinn said quietly. Bert begged, "Can I touch them?" He longed to see if they felt as silky as they looked. Quinn chuckled. "I hardly know you," Bert tilted his head to the side in confusion. "Wings are kind of private," Quinn skirted and Bert blushed a deep red, "Oh, god, I'm sorry, I didn't know."
Quinn grinned, "It's alright, how could you know? I'm betting you don't run into a lot of demi-gods out here," Bert smiled back. "Hey," Bert asked the question that was suddenly obvious in his head, "Where do you live?" Quinn looked mildly surprised but he answered, "In a place I built in the centre of the forest," Bert looked at him,

"You live in the forest?"

"I have to stay away from Salik," he answered simply. Bert thought, "Oh my god! I have a plan! Why don't you stay with me? You can come to my house and you can spread the rumour that you've died! You can say...that Sanik poisoned your food supply when he discovered you were onto him because he wanted to kill you even if you killed him first! There, I'm clearly a genius. Then you can hideout with me in my house for a few months and she'll think you've died!" Bert cried out, jumping to his feet with the idea. He was very proud of that, such plans didn't come so fully formed to his head.

Quinn shook his head, "I couldn't impose, and I might put you in dang-"Bert stopped him," No! It's fine, she'll have no idea who I am or why you know me and besides, I owe you my life! Let me help you," he prayed. Quinn stood up and hugged him gratefully. Bert hugged him around his lower back, careful not to touch his wings.
"If you're sure...Thank you. As soon as I kill Ktesios and take my rightful place as god, I'm going to make you immortal in the hall of Olympians for helping me. What do you want to be known as, Bert the Brave?" he offered, and Bert bit his lip. "Um, why don't we just get you back to my house now? My parents are at work tonight," he asked, instead.

Thirty minutes later and Quinn was running between the living room and the dining room excitedly. He kept muttering "Human houses are so strange,"
Bert shouted at him, "Burger? Quinn? Quinn! QUINN DO YOU WANT A BURGER?"
Quinn put down the television remote he had been admiring and turned. "What's a 'burger'?" he asked, pronouncing the word as carefully as if it was a snake. Bert led
him out to the kitchen and pointed at the pre-packaged microwaveable beef burger. Quinn was fascinated by the mustard. "Why is it that colour?" he asked.
Bert sighed, "I don't know, because that's the colour of the-stop poking it-mustard seeds it comes from, I think," After inspecting the mustard and giving it one more poke 'for good luck!' he protested when Bert slapped his hand away, he allowed Bert to make him one.

Twenty minutes later and Bert was in despair.
Quinn had apparently never had processed sugar before. Bert put his head in his hands as a blonde and red streak dashed past him and sat on the oven, that had previously enraptured Quinn with its knobs and dials. He sighed as Quinn jumped off the oven and circled Bert. Another thing he had discovered was that when Quinn was on a sugar high, he liked to 'hunt'. And apparently, Bert was the only prey in the house, he thought as Quinn pounced on him from the left when he had been sure that he was on his right. Bert snorted, in tears from laughter and landed on his back on the couch.
As rough as Quinn was, he hadn't let Bert land anywhere other than the couch or the armchair yet. Every time he pounced, he cradled him securely and landed gently. Bert pointedly ignored the warm fuzzy feeling he got from this. Suddenly, the pressure and body heat on top of him disappeared, along with Quinn. "OH MY GOD, Bert!" Quinn shouted from the stairs. Following him, Bert yelled back, "Wha'?" He investigated the only room with an open door and found Quinn in his bathroom, beside his bedroom which was hidden, tucked away around the corner like his bedroom was. Quinn was staring in awe at the bathtub. "What, you don't have baths where you come from? Explains the smell."
Quinn sniffed at him haughtily and said, "Obviously we have bathtubs, but I haven't had one since I was expelled from the temple. I usually have to bathe in the river." Bert inspected his nail, feeling slightly uncomfortable about this talk of bathing Quinns and he looked up when he heard a noise.

Quinn was bouncing up and down on his toes and happily stripping off. "What'?!" was all that Bert managed before Quinn was naked and happily filling the bath with water. "Um..." Bert said intelligently as he scolded his eyes for staring. They weren't listening to his brain, not even a little bit. Before he knew it, Quinn was naked. In his bathtub. Wet. And naked. Bert swallowed. "Humans are way too uncomfortable with nakedness, in the temple we had no problem being unclothed,"
"Yes, well in the temple, your step mom married her son, so there," Bert pointed out. Quinn scowled at him. "You know," he said, kicking water at him. "You're very uptight. And it's not good to waste water. And you could probably use a bath from your fall earlier," Bert looked down and indeed, his hoodie was crusted with dirt. "What are you suggesting?" Quinn kicked the water again, "That you should share my bath," he said innocently. They stared at each other for a second. "Am I being propositioned by a god?" Bert inquired. "You are indeed," Quinn said, apparently happy that Bert needed no more hints. "Ah," Bert said and before he knew it he had locked the door, stripped off quickly and hopped in the opposite end of the bath as Quinn. "Seeing as I've been in your home less than an hour and already gotten you naked, you can touch my wings. I man...if you still want to," Quinn finished. Bert perked up, "I can? Are you sure?" Quinn nodded, leaning forward. Bert reached out his hand eagerly. He stoked the top layer of feather softly, then deeper into the plush silkiness. He smiled at Quinn, and leaning forward, Quinn pulled him by the back of the neck into a heated kiss. Stomachs flipping upside down, they slid their hands around each other and breathed in the steamy scent of the clean, warm water and each other's bodies.
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