After Archangel Protocol
"Missing" from Fallen Host
"Missing" from Apocalypse Array (in .PDF format)
Alternate Beginning of Fallen Host
Warning! This is a slash fic. Archangel Protocol was written by Lyda Morehouse and published by Roc. I have shamelessly stolen the characters, names, settings and situation from Lyda. If you haven't yet read Archangel Protocol, go out and get it now!
Michael paced the interior the belfry, wondering if he could've prevented Deirdre from leaving the church. A walk, she had told him. That was hours ago. He bit his lip to keep from cursing himself. He could've at least put up a fight, blocked the door, or *followed her.*
Wind blew in through the open windows, stirring up eddies of the whitish dust that coated the floor. Michael's hands were covered with it. So were his jeans and hair. His short, dark curls were a mess from lying on his back. He could feel dust between his naked shoulder-blades and in his nostrils. Usually, he didn't mind city-grime; it made him feel more human. But if he were truly human, he thought, he would've stopped Deirdre. A real man would've had the *will.*
The only thing a flesh-bound angel could do was call up a miracle, and Michael didn't dare. He peered out through a window at the chalk-and-silver grid of the urban neighborhoods beyond him. In the distance, he could make out the deadly sparkles of the "old city", where the Medusa Bomb had sealed everything under its flow of glass. Deirdre wouldn't walk that way, would she? Everyone knew how dangerous it was.
Michael suddenly thought he sensed a familiar presence behind him and swung around with a start, but saw no one. He scanned the inside of the belfry, letting his gaze follow the grain of the wooden floorboards and exposed rafters. A shiver ran up his spine, leaving prickles from his bare shoulders to his elbows. He snatched his leather jacket off the floor and headed to the stairs. He would find Deirdre, even if he had to make another deal with the devil to do it.
It was noticeably cooler downstairs in the vast, vaulted sanctuary. Filtered light from the high rosette windows shined down like gel-spotlights, making red and gold patterns on the otherwise dark, stone floor. Michael saw perhaps twenty assorted bowed heads amid the wooden pews. He ducked behind one of the enormous, marble columns and doubted whether he had the courage to do what he planned. In the raised chancery near the altar, someone was singing Psalm 39. The cavernous building's long reverb-time lent an eerie quality to the already disturbing lyrics.
Then he spotted him.
There was only the briefest glimpse of red hair in a ponytail; Michael wasn't even sure he saw it. The tall, lithe figure was slinking behind the colonnaded shadows of the ambulatory, in the northern arm of the church's cruciform. In his human guise, Michael lacked most of his perceptive abilities, but he always knew Morningstar.
Against his better judgement (and probably every voice in Heaven), Michael silently disappeared into the forest of columns and edged his way toward his enemy, and his only hope. About half an hour later, he finally found Morningstar leaning against a back wall, where the neo-Gothic stone tracery was badly chipped.
Michael took a sharp breath, then quickly averted his eyes, reminding himself that he mustn't underestimate his adversary's ability to tempt. Morningstar was dressed in a dark gray, Italian suit, finely tailored to accentuate his long, slim proportions. His fiery, waist-length hair was pulled back tight and tied with a slender ribbon that curled down his back, flouting every men's hair-law on the books.
Michael's gaze returned and, with aching slowness, crawled up the angel's body from toe to top, until he met the other's sneer.
To his terror, Michael could not look away, but found himself locked within the blue depths of Morningstar's eyes. He felt an odd, focused warmth stirring inside him. After a lost moment, he suddenly, with acute embarrassment, wondered how long he'd been standing there with his hands awkwardly at his sides, his mouth open.
The fallen angel chuckled, uncrossed his arms and causally slid his hands into the pockets of his suitcoat. "Michael, my good friend. You look--" Morningstar gave him a thorough once-over--"a little rough at the edges. And no shirt under that jacket. I like it. You should get a job in construction and come home to me *every* night with concrete-dust in your skin."
Michael nervously coughed and squeezed his eyes shut. This was just Morningstar's power, he assured himself. Morningstar had this effect on *everyone*, regardless of orientation. It meant nothing.
His adversary took a step closer, then reached out and put a hand on the shoulder of his leather jacket. "Something about you has changed," he said, raising his eyebrows. "You've lost something."
"Oh, *her.* I was thinking of your virginity."
Michael felt his cheeks flare up, but the other angel gave his shoulder a squeeze that sent pleasant tingles to the base of his spine. Only a few inches separated them. Michael was close enough to lean forward, close his eyes and ...
He pulled away. "Stop it!" he hissed.
"Stop what?" said Morningstar innocently. "You don't want me to tell you where your girlfriend is?"
"Of course. While *you* were up in the belfry, basking in the afterglow of your first time, *I* was busy with the LINK, keeping track of everyone. And I should probably tell you, your girlfriend doesn't make trouble; she just knows how to hunt it down."
"Where is she? Tell me!" Panic bubbled in a caldron of other, less easily acknowledged emotions.
"Information has a price," said Morningstar, grinning then turning his back. "You know what price I'm talking about."
Michael froze. He knew indeed what Morningstar meant. "Forget that, and just tell me where she is!" he blurted. "I've told you again and again, I'll never give you that!"
*"Humph."* The red-haired angel swiftly walked away.
"Ask for something else," said Michael, breaking into a run to catch up with him.
"I don't want anything else." Morningstar paused and leaned back against the wall, arms crossed. "I'll tell you exactly where Deirdre is in exchange for your, er ... *time.* That's my deal."
Michael opened his mouth to shout, but closed it again. Morningstar was looking at him with an intensity that told him it was for real this time. fighting would be futile.
"Make up your mind," said Morningstar. "And be quick about it; Deirdre doesn't have much longer."
"What?" asked Michael. "What kind of trouble is she in?" But it was obvious Morningstar wasn't going to tell him. Not unless he agreed to his terms.
"I only want a little attention, my friend. Is that too much to ask?"
"Why this?" pleaded Michael, glancing around the church to see if anyone else was within earshot.
"Maybe I'm lonely, and want to know if that Tuscan ass of your is as tight as it looks. Or maybe I just want to see what your face looks like when you're in the throws of ecstasy."
"What makes you think I would experience ecstasy with *you?*"
Morningstar smiled. "I've been seducing you miserable mortals and flesh-bound angels for thousands of years."
Michael swallowed. Twinges of excitement tempered his fear. His heart pounded and his body felt like it was slowly filling with heat from the toes on up. He bit his lip, wondering, could he become so corrupt so quickly? He wanted to run and find Deirdre, yet every nerve was screaming for Morningstar. Of course, Heaven was full of admonitions and cautionary tales about angels who had succumbed to the Dark Prince's touch, but Michael had never considered *himself* to be in any danger. He was stronger than that ... wasn't he?
He grabbed Morningstar by the lapels and said, "Where is she, you piece of shit!" Then he felt Morningstar's fingertips on his lower back, inching up underneath his jacket, and he forgot all else.
"It's good, isn't it?" whispered the dark angel into his ear. His fingers were as light as feathers. Strands of golden-red hair brushed Michael's cheek. "You're quivering, Michael. I can tell you want it. I'll make you feel things you never imagined. Please say yes."
"I ... I can't."
"Say yes." Morningstar lightly brushed his lips against Michael's ear. Michael trembled, his knees turning to water.
"No," said Michael, closing his eyes as his lips parted slightly. "No ... yes." He was burning.
"That's my beautiful one." Morningstar took his hand and gently kissed his palm. "Captain." He led him toward the ornately decorated, domed apse at the church's east end.
Michael felt almost too dazed to protest, but he said, "We can't do this in a sanctuary."
"I just won't. Let's at least go to the belfry." Michael resolved not to repeat the mistake of Medusa, who had been cursed for having sex on sacred ground.
Morningstar chuckled. "Who wants to do it in a dusty, old belfry? I know just the place. C'mon." He opened a small wooden door that no longer fit its frame, and nudged Michael into a dark corridor. Then they ducked into a narrower passageway, where Michael had to stoop under the low ceiling as he walked. The air was hot and dry, like the space around the mouth of a blast furnace. Michael stripped off his jacket and tucked it under one arm. They emerged into a boiler room, where the temperature near the large aluminum conduits had to be at least 105¡. Under the dim, fluorescent lighting, Michael could see Morningstar tipping his head back and literally basking in the heat, while rivulets of sweat poured down Michael's face and chest.
"*Here?*" asked Michael. "This place is unbearable!"
"It reminds me of home. But I forgot; you have more temperate tastes." He took Michael's hand again and led him down an unlit stairway.
"You seem to know this place well," said Michael, marveling at the softness of his enemy's hand. At the bottom of the stairs, the air was crisp, with an acrid smell of damp concrete. It was pitch black. Morningstar turned and wrapped his hands around Michael's bare waist.
Michael sighed. He could hold off no longer. It was no use pretending any more. *Sammael*. *Luminous Sammael*, most beautiful of all God's creations. He had wanted Sammael since their first battle in Heaven. Dropping his jacket, he buried his hands in the fallen angel's hair, snapping the ribbon that bound it. Morningstar's hair was so fine it was like running his fingers through raw silk-floss. He pulled Morningstar's face to his and gave him a long, bruising kiss. All the decrees in Heaven couldn't stop them now.
He felt Morningstar's whole body go suddenly rigid in his arms.
"What's wrong?" asked Michael, breaking the kiss.
"N-nothing." There was a brief flicker of hesitancy, then Morningstar returned to him, darting his tongue into Michael's mouth. A soft moan escaped Michael's throat as Morningstar pinned him against the wall with his hips.
Michael wanted this. Thoughts of everything else fled, leaving only his desire. Every place along his body where Morningstar caressed him burned with delightful twinges of increasing need. He wanted all of it--all that was forbidden, that he had denied himself for so many millennia.
"More," he whispered.
"More, oh-righteous-one?" asked Morningstar, arms around his waist. "I wasn't sure. You were so reluctant at first." He nuzzled Michael's hair, just behind his left ear.
Michael was on the verge of sobbing. "I can't lie to myself anymore. Sammael. I've always wanted you. And it's not your powers that are making me say this. I want you!"
Morningstar paused and stepped back. "You called me Sammael." There was a note of genuine shock in his voice.
Michael reached for him and kissed him long and hard. Somewhere in that kiss, he felt Morningstar lose control of the carefully practiced performance. There was real passion in the fallen angel's kiss, and something else as well: fear. Could that be? wondered Michael. Was Morningstar afraid? Morningstar broke away. "Maybe another time would be better. I'm--"
*No longer in control*, thought Michael. "It's all right, Sammael."
"Don't call me that! I can't bear to hear that name. Sammael was defeated by you. I'm Morningstar, and I'll be the one to orchestrate this." He regained his previous composure and led Michael to a small, sparse chamber. He lit a single candle that was fixed to a water-stained, wooden table by earlier drippings. The "bed" was a cheap, foam mattress on the cement floor with a few odd pillows and a wool blanket.
Morningstar said, "The clergy used to hide refugees down in these rooms, before things got too dangerous. Today no one's even aware of this space. We're directly under the center of the sanctuary."
"Do you sleep here?" Michael looked around at the cinder-block walls, where moisture had turned everything to a deep, uneven brown with specks of black mildew. "You do, don't you. Why?" But something told him not to press the question.
Morningstar turned to him with half-lidded eyes. "I'm a fool to do this with you." He glanced at the floor and actually began to wring his hands. His breath hissed between his teeth. If any battles raged within whatever had become of his soul, he was keeping them locked inside. For a second he seemed about to break down. But after a deep breath, he simply laughed and shrugged and removed his suit jacket. "Well, let's not waste time."
"I'm a mess," said Michael, unbuttoning Morningstar's starched, black shirt with deliberate slowness. He let his fingers brush against the angel's smooth chest.
Morningstar gasped and whispered, "Oh, you're perfect just as you are." His hands slid down Michael's broad shoulders to his back. Michael undid two buttons, then three, then four. Barely audible sounds escaped Morningstar's lips. When the shirt was finally open, Michael slid it off and let it fall. Then they stood and kissed. Morningstar's fingers opened Michael's jeans. In less than a minute, they were both completely naked, their clothes strewn across the floor.
Michael let himself be dazzled by Morningstar's radiance, which had never really diminished, but had merely changed in hue. Where Michael's light was golden, like the sun, Morningstar's was deep blue.
"What're you staring at?" said Morningstar, kneeling down. He wrapped his hand around the base of Michael's cock and gently kissed the tip.
There were brief flashes of the fallen angel's true form. The enormous battered wings were splayed out behind him, passing spirit-like through the solid walls. Once again, the torn tunic hung off one shoulder, and there were bruises and burns on the bare legs.
Suddenly everything grew much brighter.
Morningstar looked up. "Oh!"
Michael glanced at himself. His street dust was gone, replaced with the shining, naked splendor of his own true form. His great wings stretched across the span of several rooms.
Morningstar fell back on his heels and stared, lips parted.
Wordlessly, they reached for each other. There was some nudging, and then they were on the bed. Morningstar seemed blinded ... and famished. He took Michael's erection into his mouth and sucked hard. Long curls of red hair kept falling over his eyes. Every few seconds, his free hand reached up to brush them back behind his ear.
Michael stretched across the pillows and watched. Inside he twisted in torment. He knew this was the worst thing to which he could succumb, but he had never felt so wonderful. Morningstar's mouth was gentle yet insistent and demanding, in just the right amounts at just the right moments. Soon Michael was moaning out loud, unable to contain himself.
*Oh! Ohhh!* His back arched. He grabbed fistfuls of Morningstar's beautiful, shining hair. He had to thrust harder into that hot mouth or he would go insane!
Morningstar stopped and sat up.
"Lie still, or I'll stop!"
"I mean it," said the fallen angel, arms crossed.
Michael obeyed, and the teasing resumed with feathery strokes. Soon, Michael was nearly there. But Morningstar backed off and let him hang for seeming eternity. Then, after the groans turned to whimpers, it started again. Finally, Morningstar's insistent mouth carried him all the way.
Michael's release was like thunder and lightning. His ethereal wings fanned out through the material of the bed, floor, walls and ceiling. Everything around him blazed with gold light. He was vaguely aware of the other angel's struggle to swallow him. Morningstar was working hard not to lose a drop.
Then, immediately after the last of his bursts, Michael was turned over, his legs spread apart. There was the shuffling of movement behind him, and the sound of a glass bottle being uncorked, but Michael was too dazed to wonder at it. Then long, oiled fingers entered him, stretching his opening. He leaned forward on his arms and raised his hips in anticipation. This was wholly new to him, although he had heard of such acts.
*What wonderful things I've missed!*
When Morningstar took hold of his hips, the excitement was overwhelming. Michael was hard again. The tip of Morningstar's cock nudged him just a little. Michael backed into it, panting.
"Yes!" he hissed. "Fuck me!"
"I will," came the smooth voice. Michael grabbed the corners of the mattress in his fists, gritting his teeth as Morningstar slowly pressed into him. The pressure triggered delicious places deep within his loins. Morningstar gave him a few preliminary strokes--very slow--before starting the real work.
Michael moaned as Morningstar speared in and out. Then he found himself snarling and shouting. He couldn't believe what he, Michael, was screaming, that he was even capable of such words. Pleas, threats, blasphemies, curses and oaths--nothing was beneath him. His pleasure grew stronger with each stroke, but could not keep apace with desire, and the more he received, the more he needed. He felt as if Morningstar's darkness was filling him--a frightening yet thrilling revelation.
It went on and on. Gradually, Michael noticed that Morningstar wasn't coming, wasn't even getting close. He was holding back. Each time his thrusts grew faster, he would slow them down, edging away from his own urgency.
Then Morningstar withdrew.
Michael turned on him like an animal, his lips curled over his teeth. "What're you doing?"Morningstar pulled away and brought his legs together, arms around his knees. Loose strands of hair framed his face, obscuring his frightened expression. He was actually shaking. "Your light. It's entering me."
"So?" Michael was crouching like a lion. His gentle, considerate, *human* persona had vanished, leaving only the celestial warrior with tongues of flame at the tips of his wings.
Morningstar panicked. He was trapped in his old form again, with one crumpled, singed wing held close to his body. But the pain in his wings was nothing compared to the danger he now faced. He realized what a mistake he had made in seducing Michael, that Michael would enflame him with far more desire than he could bear. It was dangerous to be so vulnerable; Michael could break his spirit.
"No," he said to the angel who had once been his captain. "Not this time. I won't take myself to the top."
"Then *I'll* take you there." Michael sprang forward and seized him by the arms. Their fighting knocked over the table and extinguished the candle, but Michael's light was more than enough to fill the room. He said, "You make everyone submit to *their* temptations, but you won't submit to your *own!*"
Morningstar fled the room and down the corridor, to unknown reaches under the building. Relying on the faint, deep-blue light of his wings, he sprinted barefoot. But the way was narrow, and he stumbled. Michael caught him and wrestled him to the floor, pinning him by the wings.
"Get off me!" cried Morningstar.
"Not until we finish this!"
Michael's superior strength was at full glory now. Morningstar tried to claw his way out, his fingers digging into the cracks in the cement. But his struggle was in vain. Despite the searing pain of his broken and constricted wings, desire burned inside, urging surrender to his dark-haired former captain. He ached to be plundered.
Then he was flipped onto his back. Michael's lips pressed against his own and, with an anguished cry, he gave in. He felt himself opening wide. There was an emptiness that needed to be filled ... with Michael.
"Stop struggling," said Michael.
"Please ... don't make me."
"You're going to be okay. It won't destroy you."
As his captain raised his knees and spread him open, allowing no time for any further preparation, Morningstar never even feared the pain that would surely follow. But there was no pain. As Michael pounded into him, each thrust lifted Morningstar to higher and higher levels of joy. He could feel his captain's golden brilliance pouring into him, coursing through him and transforming the darkness.
He wrapped his arms around Michael and held him tightly, climbing to an ecstasy he had not known since before The Fall. Michael's eyes told him that he knew his secret; Morningstar, who, through the millennia, had seduced countless others and brought them to climax, could never afford the luxury himself.
Michael's hand was pumping him to match the thrusts. "Let it come," he urged. "Yes, that's it. I'm with you."
There was a flicker of a moment when Morningstar thought, *I'm done-for.* Then he came violently against Michael's torso, screaming with the pleasure of each burst. Michael, too, lost himself as he pumped his seed into the depths of Morningstar's body.
The spasms were countless. Morningstar lolled his head to one side, gasping and clutching his captain. Streams of sweat poured down their entwined bodies. Morningstar could feel his celestial self shrinking back into its human form, as Michael's wings vanished. The strange, golden light that had entered him was gone.
They were left in the cold, damp dark.
Morningstar pushed the heavy, wet curls of black hair from Michael's face. He leaned close to his ear and whispered a few city coordinates. Then he said, "Get your clothes and go to Deirdre. Quickly. I rather like her."
Michael gave him one last kiss, then staggered to his feet and hurried away. After he was gone, Morningstar lay a long while on the floor. Then he got up and followed, carrying a new thought; victory was sweet, but not so wonderful as surrender.
He hoped to surrender again and again.
Disclaimer: These stories are based on characters and situations created and owned by Lyda Morehouse, published in Archangel Protocol, Fallen Host, and Messiah Node by Roc (a division of Penguin Putnam).
No money is being made and no copyright or trademark infringement is intended.