Another hunt, another person safe – this was nothing new to the two identical twins. Of course, they had their own way of going about things and since the Pulse came about, the world was a lot more complicated; or so their adoptive father said. He would always tell them “Back before the world went dark, back before everything started getting bad; things were pretty darn good. And let me tell you, hunting was a snap. Everything you needed right there at your fingertips. Sure, finding the monsters was harder; but that’s what made the job what it was”.
As Alec was driving them along one of the back roads of Seattle, these words were echoing in Ben’s head. Sometimes he missed the days when things were simpler for them, back when they were just kids learning how to protect themselves when Father Singer was off hunting whatever monster was causing trouble in the surrounding towns. Things weren’t really that simple anymore. Father Singer was retired, taking to helping hunters from afar – mainly them though it seemed; monsters were just as wary about exposing themselves, yet still causing all the same trouble; and Alec… Well, things were touchy between them currently.
Ben supposed it had something to do with the fact that the last vampire nest had an innocent, just turned vamp that Ben beheaded without more than a blink of an eye. He was so used to the idea of killing monsters that he didn’t think of gray spots. Still didn’t, really. Ben was raised to prevent others from dying and that’s exactly what he thought he was doing. Alec apparently didn’t see it that way.
Alec had always tried to get Ben to think differently, see through the eyes of a monster for a second. Too many arguments about such things would always end up with Alec telling him that. Or Alec saying “We’re not all that different, Ben. Look at us. Look what we can do.”
That always sparked more controversy between the twins since they weren’t all that normal themselves. From a young age, Father Singer had noted that they both seemed a little better than everyone else – they could run faster and nearly blurring if they tried, they didn’t get tired as much, healed a little quicker, and a list of other things. Of course he had asked them about it, but the twins never knew how they were able to do those things. They just could. Father Singer originally suspected some kind of mojo but the two never had their faults. Nothing seemed to make them weak.
But Alec always had a way about bringing this up when they would fight if something would go south in a hunt. Always. And it irritated Ben to the point of making him shut down – like he was right now in the passenger seat. And he knew it irked Alec. He could tell by the way he shifted in the seat and from the scowl on his face that was trying to stay hidden.
Directing his attention back to out the window and focusing on the passing scenery of trees and grass, Ben heard Alec clear his throat. He guessed it was about time to stop making his brother suffer and say something. The silence had been surrounding the duo for over forty five minutes now.
“Are we going home first or to Crash?” Ben asked calmly, voice smooth and absent of anger.
From the corner of his eye he could see Alec glance at him with a little hint of surprise, like he hadn’t expected Ben to talk about another forty five minutes. “Uh, where do you wanna go?”
Raising his brow, the subtle offering that Ben could choose was different. Usually Alec liked to play the older brother role and decide everything himself, just making Ben tag along. So obviously, Ben wasn’t going to pass up such an offer. “Crash. We should go tell Max we’re home. She’ll worry.”
Alec scoffed a little and said, “Yeah. Sure. She definitely looses sleep over us being gone.”
“You don’t know that.”
“Actually, I do.”
Ben rolled his eyes and gave a small sigh. “Max isn’t that hard to read, Alec. If you would just take the time to look at her and understand instead of eyeing up the other women in the place…” He turned his head just enough to catch Alec making a face at him and smiled a little in knowing that he was right.
“Whatever,” Alec mumbled, fixing his focus back to the road. Silence slowly clambered back into the front of the beat up sedan and between them, staying until they reached their destination.
They lied their way through at least two sectors of Seattle before finally getting to Crash where they parked the car, only to get out and enter the bar to find it crowded as per usual. Ben watched the back of his brother’s head as they weaved through the crowd towards the bar where Max was tending; currently talking to a patron with a look that clearly thought said patron was stupid.
“Hey Maxie,” Alec said as he sat. Ben quietly at his side, sitting on the next bar stool.
“Why do I get the feeling you want something?” she sighed, hands going to her hips.
Ben glanced over at Alec from the corner of his eye to see his twin smirking. Of course he wanted something. It was a rare thing for the nickname to come out and Alec usually used it when he wanted something or was in trouble. “We’d just like to know what the word is,” Ben said before Alec could respond. He gave a soft smile, which was easily returned by Max. It was a sad thing to say, but he was on her good side more than Alec. She might have even liked Alec less.
“Well ya could’ve just asked!” She shot a pointed look to Alec before turning her focus back to Ben a short moment. “Things are quiet,” Max explained through a nod. “Some think too quiet. Like something’s gonna go down.”
“Any idea what?” Alec asked. No snark or condescending tone was in his voice for once and his focus was set on work.
“Not a clue. I heard some mumbles about demons though tonight.”
That was the one good thing about where they lived. There seemed to be a lot of hunters in the area and Crash was the focal point to mingle and pick up a case or two even. To regular civilians, it was just a rowdy bar with people that shouldn’t be messed with. Of course, Ben and Alec didn’t entirely fit that stereotype if going by looks though. They were slim, built like athletes, even though people close to them like Father Singer knew damn well they could hold their own or better.
Clearing his throat, Alec asked, “Mind if we get a drink? You can put it on his tab.” A jab of his finger was directed at Ben, who frowned knowingly. Alec just grinned back at him while Max smirked and went to getting them clean glasses from under the counter to fill with whatever was on tap.
“You didn’t pay your own tab, Alec,” Ben warned him.
“You’re worse than her sometimes,” he sighed, grumbling as he turned around to face the crowd.
Ben only stayed at Crash for one drink, having been deserted by his twin when he was almost halfway done to go cozy up with some brunette he was charming. His brother’s habits were frustrating. They should be focusing on the possible coming demon problem that was going to hit, right near their home. But no, no Alec was off busying himself with women. He scowled as he poured over an old book from Father Singer’s library, a scowl stuck on his face.
Just then, as if on cue, Father Singer walked past Ben sitting at the table to move into the kitchen. Ben didn’t look up, but heard him say, “Alright. What’s eatin’ ya kid?”
“Hm?” Mind having been elsewhere, Ben glanced up from his book and then at Father Singer curiously. “Oh. Hi. Uh…”
“You look like someone just told you Santa Claus isn’t real.”
Ben made a curious face, mostly because he knew that concept wasn’t true by his fifth birthday due to a mouthy twin that wanted to boast about things he overheard. “I’m just…angry,” he said through a breath.
Father Singer was filling his mug with coffee while he said, “Let me guess… Alec?”
“How’d you know?” There was nothing but sarcasm in his voice. Father Singer knew them better than anyone, even Max probably. That probably had something to do with raising them and seeing their habits and quirks after twenty two years.
“Well…” Father Singer sat across from Ben at the table, sitting his mug down and went on to say, “You’ve got your other half to your whole missing. And I know how he can be…unfocused at times when you are.”
“He’s an idiot,” Ben grumbled, glancing down to the book. “Max heard there could be a demon problem right here soon and where is Alec? Other with some…some woman!” It was no secret about Ben’s fiery temper he harbored, and luckily Father Singer had helped him at a young age learn to deal with it.
Then again, the temper he was showing now could have had something to do with a protective side he had towards Alec, maybe even a little jealousy. He’d never been good with women, the only relationship he was in lasting for five minutes and had been paid for due to Alec’s constant nagging. It was safe to say it hadn’t ended well thanks to Ben being closed off and very awkward. When Ben thought about it, really – Alec was the only person he was close to. As soon as they started hunting on their own, they began to drift away from Father Singer and there were things that he wouldn’t tell him before his twin.
A sigh and Ben’s hands that had found their way into fists on the table unclenched. “I’m sorry,” Ben quietly said. “I shouldn’t have raised my voice at you…”
“No, you’ve got every reason to be mad at him.” Father Singer’s tone was calm and even, just as he always spoke to Ben after one of his little outbursts he would have in his younger days. “Why don’t you give him a call? Tell him to get back home here and help prepare. ‘Cause we sure aren’t gonna be able to be ready for a full scale war without him.”
Ben noted the serious expression on Father Singer’s face and watched a silent moment as he walked away, no doubt to ready things for whatever creatures were going to crawl out of their shadows and into the city of Seattle. He pulled out his battered cell phone from his pocket and made the call to Alec. He didn’t answer – obviously – leading Ben to leave a message.
“Alec, you need to get home. We’re trying to ready things here for what Max heard about, but I—We need your help.” His voice lowered and before he hung up to end the message, Ben added quietly, “Please come home.”
With the phone snapped shut then, Ben got up and made his way into Father Singer’s study to help make more holy water.
He’d heard his phone go off, sure; but Alec was a little caught up to answer it with the woman at Crash that invited him back to her place. She was pretty, that wasn’t something he could deny, but he did have a persistent whining voice in the back of his head that he should be back home to help Ben and Father Singer research.
But this woman. Alec really didn’t have a single complaint with the way she felt under him on the couch or her lips on his. Granted, kissing had been all they were doing, but Alec was raised with enough respect to know that taking her right to bed would’ve been a bad idea, considering how buzzed she was.
She gave a small content sound before hands pressed against his chest and her head sunk into the couch for her to say, “I need to freshen up.” He sat up, giving her room to move and watched as she scurried away while throwing a wink over her shoulder. Alec managed a small smile and as soon as the door shut, he took the chance to listen to the message on his phone.
“Alec, you need to get home. We’re trying to ready things here for what Max heard about, but I—We need your help …Please come home.”
The tone his twin’s voice took made him frown, scrubbing a hand over his face. Apparently, he’s been so lost in thought at trying to decode Ben’s tone that he didn’t hear the bathroom door open again. Instead, Alec felt the woman sit at his side and immediately felt her kissing at his neck. He pocketed his phone again and gave half a chuckle. “Something came up. Think I’m gonna need a raincheck, sweetheart.”
“Aw, are y’sure?” Her words slurred a little and he looked at her out of the corner of his eye. Yeah, she was definitely borderline drunk and there wasn’t much he could do with that.
“Positive.” Alec got to his feet, grabbed his coat off the back of the couch, and said, “I’ll call you.”
He only vaguely heard her say about the fact that she didn’t give him her number as he walked out and shut the door behind him.
The two of them had just finished checking over all the devil’s traps in the entire house when a door opened and shut. Ben was up faster than Father Singer could even grab his shotgun. He was already up, at the corner, and aimed out the opening that led through to the small living room.
“Yo. Anyone home?” Alec’s voice called out.
Ben lowered his shotgun and a hard glare set on his face, glancing to look at Father Singer before walking around the corner to approach his brother. “Where have you been?” The anger in his voice was evident and he wasn’t trying to hide it. No, he wanted Alec to know that he was irritated with him.
“I was hanging out with a friend. Sorry we can’t all be shy and scared of women like you,” he quipped back at his twin.
The remark only raised his temper and Ben tightened his grip on the gun as he heard Father Singer approaching from behind him. “We really could’ve used you here, boy. Helping us. There is the threat of demons that we gotta prepare for.” Ben didn’t have to look to know that Father Singer was giving Alec a stern look while speaking; he often did that when he needed to step up and actually fill the role of father instead of just a guardian.
Alec sighed, shoulders visibly slumping slightly as he said, “I’m here now, ‘kay? Just point me to whatever still needs to be done.”
“Nothing needs to be done!” Ben raised his voice, near fuming now. The hand on his shoulder from Father Singer was meant to put him at ease, but it only made him snap even more. He shrugged the hand off and stormed away to his room. Actually, the room he shared with Alec when they weren’t traveling. Even more of a reminder to his anger.
He sat down on his small single bed, back to Alec’s identical bed that was a few feet away. His brow stayed knotted in frustration and the hand gripped the shotgun, only a little looser compared to when he was in the room with Alec. Ben didn’t know how to deal with certain things and this? This was just one of them. He never knew how to deal with his brother’s more often than not easily distracted mind. Why couldn’t he just…have all the answers? It would make things easier on all of them…
Drawn from his thoughts by a knocking on the doorway, Ben sat the shotgun in front of him on the bed before glancing over his shoulder with a deadly look. If it was Alec, he had better have a good excuse or apology or something lined up. Then again, he usually did when Ben lost his temper over one of his mistakes.
“Hey,” Alec said, softly with downcast eyes as he leaned against the frame of the door. “Look, I’m sorry, okay? I wanted a break for a little bit and my head’s back in the game now so…you don’t have to worry.”
“Who said I was worried?” It wasn’t meant to sound hurtful, but it had and Ben realized this as soon as the words passed his lips. He watched Alec a few beats before going back to staring at the wall behind his bed.
Footsteps signaled to him that Alec was moving into the room and Ben tensed up a little as soon as he felt like Alec was hovering at his back. “You sure sounded worried in your voicemail, little bro.”
He huffed a sigh. “Well, I wasn’t. I figured you were busy with some woman.”
And then, just like usual in these situations between the two, Alec leaned down with arms wrapping around Ben’s shoulders in a half-assed hug. His chin rested atop of Ben’s head and Alec said, “I said I’m sorry. How many more times do you want me to say it, Ben? I’ll say it a few hundred, if you’d like.”
Alec sounded sincere, a little more than usual. Maybe it was because Ben lashed out a little more than he usually did due to the stress of whatever was to come in the sense of demons. The gravity of Alec’s words made the tension deflate a little in Ben and he brought a hand up to hold Alec’s wrist. “No more. Just mean it when you say it.” That wasn’t too much to ask, was it? Ben hadn’t thought so.
He felt Alec nod and then heard him reply, “I really am sorry.” A kiss was pressed to the top of his head and Ben’s eyes widened. It wasn’t often that affection of that nature was shown. At least, Ben remembered the last time Alec kissed his head like that it was when they were twelve and he came down with a terrible flu.
“Okay. I accept your apology.” He didn’t move for a moment, mostly because Ben sort of wanted to hold onto the moment since work was just around the corner no doubt. Hesitantly and without much thought to it, Ben raised Alec’s hand to press a kiss to it with a sigh. “We should finish and check around the outside of the house for signs.”
Alec withdrew his arms carefully and when Ben got to his feet, Alec seemed to have a confused look on his face. Ben wasn’t sure why but he picked up his gun and made his way out of their room anyways, assuming Alec would follow.
Things were relatively calm and almost unnervingly so until Alec thought he heard something from his spot by the window. Sitting up from his slouched position, he smacked Ben’s shoulder lightly after getting to his feet and motioned to the door twice – a cue to move forward.
Ben did just this and kept a grip on his gun. Father Singer was in the other room keeping a watch on things over the radio, so they didn’t think to bother him. It was just a small noise because Ben heard it finally too. It wasn’t anything to be worried about. Not really, anyways. Just a tapping. A light, tiny tapping.
The tapping only went on for another moment until it abruptly stopped. The twins exchanged confused looks and Alec whispered, “Stay put. I’ll have a look.” Ben gave a disapproving expression, but that didn’t ever exactly put a stop to his brother’s stubbornness or strong will.
He observed silently, hand shifting every two seconds while Alec carefully crept to the door and opened it silently to move out. All seemed perfectly fine and Ben was about to breath when Alec suddenly screamed and was ripped away, dropping his gun in the process.
“Alec!” Ben knew Father Singer would hear the shouts and come to his aid, but… By the time Ben had gotten to his feet and was blurring over to the door, Alec was gone. No traces of him spare for the gun on the grass in front of the low step to the house. Biting his lip, Ben picked up the weapon and said to Father Singer, “We need to get him back, dad.” It wasn’t often either of the boys called Father Singer that peculiar word (in their opinion), but when they did it usually was because they meant business. Father Singer knew that. It was exactly why he just gave a curt nod and moved to follow Ben back into the study to grab some gear before they were no doubt going to leave to find Alec.
Everything blacked out for Alec the second he felt himself be grabbed. And it was the first time in months that a hunt caused him to black out. He would have colored himself impressed as he opened his eyes a crack, but with a blurry vision and massive headache – he wasn’t sure he wanted to color anything. A groan and he tried to move, finding himself unable.
“You’re awake, finally. Good.”
The voice sounded familiar, but with things being disoriented, Alec couldn’t fully place it. He shifted, finding that he must be strapped to some kind of table with his arms outstretched. From the position he was currently in, he wasn’t sure if it was the work of a shapeshifter or something else. “’Kay, now reveal your grand scheme, tell me what you want, and we’ll talk this out,” he grumbled out the last part. All he wanted was to be able to move his hands near his eyes to rub them in attempt to see better since blinking wasn’t helping.
That tapping was back and it seemed to attach to the voice’s shoes. Alec pulled against his retraints as he heard the person say, “And where would the fun in that be?” A sigh from the person and Alec was piecing the puzzle together in his head as the talking went on. “We’re just going to rip you apart instead to see what makes you tick. How’s that sound?”
No, he knew that voice. It was too familiar. And feminine. He tried not to shudder when he realized who it belonged to and keep his eyes shut, but he had to look. Just to see if he was right.
Upon opening his eyes, Alec saw just what he didn’t want to: Max, pacing around his table and dressed more like other demons he saw in the past with their suits and prideful looks. The black eyes on his friend’s possessed face didn’t really help matters, either. There wasn’t anything he could do though, not now. He couldn’t even talk really, as much as he wanted to, since he knew the demon would just use his words against him. So Alec steeled himself, swallowed his pride and forming lump in his throat, and shut his eyes silently.
“What happened to being mouthy, huh? Max loves that. Sometimes, anyways.” She was just trying to coax him now, he knew. Trying to get a rise out of him when he was so focused that Alec was positive he could ignore her until Ben and Father Singer found him. He was so sure of it...until the creature went on. “What she really loves though, is when you visit her. Not when you visit and take off with another stupid bitch, but close enough, right? Anything to deny the real people who care about you. Deflecting. Isn’t that what you do, Alec?”
“Shut up,” he snapped. “God, Max might hate me for when I do but I’m gonna love wiping that stupid smirk off her face…”
“Again with the deflecting. Why can’t you just see what’s going on in your miserable little life before it’s over? Max, your brother… They both swoon over you. It’s ridiculous.” An eye roll and the possessed Max was moving over to grab a knife from a tray of what looked to be in the corner of Alec’s eye – tools.
And then, all of a sudden, there was a new voice in the room. One much more strong and confident than Max and Alec’s combined. “Step away from him with the knife.” It definitely wasn’t his brother or Father Singer though… Alec cracked an eye to see a man with round glasses and short spiky blond hair staring straight at Max with a glance that…well, it would make Alec want to listen instead of pissing the guy off – even if he didn’t look like he was very strong.
Alec watched as Max seemed to tense and dropped the knife before the plume of black smoke that was the demon fled her body with a screeching sound. He winced as Max dropped to the floor lifelessly and the man that was playing hero approached him, loosening the bonds to allow Alec to move. “Thanks stranger.” Not another glance was spared to the guy as Alec knelt down to make sure Max was alright, checking her pulse and trying to sit her up.
“She’s still alive. The demon wore her down from such long possession.”
“Wait, what? Long? How do you know?” Alec asked, looking over his shoulder at the guy. “Are you a hunter?”
“Three days now. And no. I’m an angel and I was sent to watch over you and your twin during these…trying times.” His look seemed to soften a moment but went right back when Alec laughed.
“Yeah. Right. You’re an angel. Sure. Hey, if you’re really what you say you are, why don’t you just fly us back to Father Singer’s place then, huh?” Alec was only trying to get under the guy’s skin, get him to break and admit he wasn’t really what he claimed. But he took the few steps and placed two fingers to both Alec and Max’s foreheads and they disappeared.
Ben had just walked out the door when he heard Father Singer shout “Good lord” from inside the house. Taking it as a sign of trouble, Ben blurred back inside with his gun aimed at the ready to find Father Singer standing in the middle of the living room with an awe stuck look on his face in the direction of Max on the couch looking to be asleep, Alec standing next to her, and an unfamiliar person standing almost ramrod straight in front of them.
“Alec? You’re okay?” Ben immediately rushed past both Father Singer and the stranger to look over his twin, eyes then averting to Max with panic. “What happened? Is something wrong with Max? Who is this person? How did you come in when I was outside?” He had a thousand and one questions and they just weren’t being answered as quickly as he would like.
Alec grabbed Ben’s shoulders and stilled him, giving a pointed look. “Calm, little bro. Breathe. I’m just as confused as you are right now.” He mumbled out the last part and Ben noticed him looking towards the stranger peculiarly. Ben glanced back in his direction as he listened to Alec say, “Max was possessed and this…angel guy saved us. We probably owe him thanks.”
At the word ‘angel’, Ben’s jaw dropped. Out of the two twins, he was always the one that was more religious and liked to help Father Singer with things around the small church whenever he could. Alec always liked to think he had more interesting things to do, like teasing Ben or running around with friends. “Is he really…?”
“Let’s not speak of him like he isn’t right here, Ben,” Father Singer advised. Alec dropped his grip and the twins both faced Father Singer and the stranger – the angel – and watched Father Singer nod towards him. “Thank you for saving my boys. Do you have a name?”
“Ezekiel, but if that’s too complicated I’m sure my vessel wouldn’t mind me using his name. Logan.”
“Logan. Thank you.”
Alec was first to speak up about this acclaimed angel. “Aren’t you gonna test him?”
Father Singer looked to the twins and said, “He got past all of our wards and salt. I think he’s what he says he is.” He almost looked disappointed a split second before saying, “Have a little bit of faith, Alec.”
Alec just gave a silent nod and Ben’s eyes lit up. “We’ve never met an angel before. Are there a lot of you? Do you all hide or something from humans in Heaven?”
“Maybe you should save the questions for after we know Max is okay and not out cold still, ‘kay?” Alec retorted to Ben’s little bout of glee.
A furrowed brow and nod later and Ben was stepping back. “Ez—Logan, would you mind checking her? Angels are supposed to be…powerful creatures. I’ve read about them since I was young.”
“Of course.” Logan moved past them and put a hand over Max’s forehead, face staying completely blank for the moment he did as such before retracting his hand and saying, “She’ll wake in a moment.” He moved back to where he was previous standing and added, “You need to prepare. There are more demons coming.”
“Are you gonna help us?” Ben questioned.
“I can’t interfere. I’m simply to observe. My apologies.”
Ben’s hopeful smile that his face faltered and he frowned. “Oh.”
“Are you serious?” Alec chimed in. “You mean, you’re just gonna stand around and watch while we bust our asses?” He scoffed. “Some angel you are.” Logan didn’t do more than bristle at Alec’s remark before glancing once at both of the twins and then disappearing. “Well, so much for that!”
Just as Logan said, Max woke up five minutes after he was gone. Father Singer was at her side with some water and helping her, trying to make sure she was okay while Ben overlooked. Alec had marched off after Logan disappeared and Ben was just giving him a moment to cool off before going to talk to him.
He watched as Max looked in his direction and frowned, the smallest hint of a smile trying to appear but failing. “How are you feeling?” he asked her.
“Like I ran into a brick wall.”
“That happens when a demon rides you. Here, drink,” Father Singer advised her, handing over the small glass of water.
Another glance spared at Max and Father Singer and Ben was turning to go back to his and Alec’s room, poking his head in cautiously. “Alec, you need to come back out. It looks as if it’s getting darker outside.” That had been something he noticed while standing in the quiet den prior. “The demons will be here soon and we need you.” Actually, in his mind, he phrased it differently. It was more of him saying ‘I need you’, but that wasn’t what was heard.
Alec didn’t say a word, just continued to stare out the window as he leaned against the frame of it. Ben could see from his reflection in the glass that Alec was angry, clearly. But it didn’t explain everything that he had a question for. Furrowing his brow, Ben opened his mouth to speak after a beat of silence but Alec cut him off.
“Angels are stupid. Father Singer always said that they were protecting us and all that crap, but they obviously don’t give a rat’s ass.” In the reflection of the glass, Ben saw his expression shift to one of irritation. “And then you had to go fawn all over him.” A scoff and Alec added, “That’s not even really him. He’s using some guy’s body!” Alec turned and faced Ben, shaking his head and glance lowering to the ground. “I’m just… I guess I expected more. Fluffy wings and a halo or something.”
A curt nod and Ben replied, “I expected more too. But it is a little nice to know that everything we were told about when we were young is true.”
“Yeah, right along with all those other creatures and demons and whatnot that we have to kill.”
“…Maybe he’ll come back and change his mind to help us.”
“Doubtful. He seemed too high and mighty for that. I’m surprised he even helped me and Max in the first place.”
Ben sighed. He didn’t know what else he could say to Alec to change his thoughts on the situation. Explaining that an angel that seemed to be their ally of sorts wasn’t going to cut it, he knew. Especially when said angel had left because he said he couldn’t help them. He was at a loss for words and simply moved the few steps closer to Alec in order to hug him. Affections between them, again, were rare; but Ben felt it was needed.
Alec didn’t fight him on the hug and they stayed like that for a few moments, with Ben’s chin nestled into the crook of Alec’s neck and Alec with one arm around Ben’s middle. Silence stayed in the air around them – spare the vague mumble of talking they could both hear with their more-than-better hearing coming from the den.
That’s when the entire house seemed to rumble and shake violently under and around them, which caused the two to break apart and have their shotguns at the ready again. “Boys!” they heard Father Singer shout.
The twins were blurring out to the den before he could say anything else, armed and ready for whatever was going to burst through the front door since it sounded as if something was going to. Father Singer was on his feet, as was Max, both in the process of arming themselves with weapons as the door flew off the hinges unexpectedly – two people marching in with black eyes.
Ben was first to fire, Alec second and both at the first person. He didn’t drop, but did twitch due to their shotgun rounds being prepped with salt prior. The other person took a few steps ahead of the other and immediately stopped, as if running into an invisible wall. They smirked, cocking their head. “Funny. This won’t hold all of us back.”
“Maybe not, but it’ll slow your stupid asses down,” Alec snapped, firing a round at the second demon to make it stutter backwards slightly.
Another black eyed person rushed in, past the two that were near-wailing in the hidden devil’s trap. They didn’t get far though, seeing that Father Singer was already reciting an exorcism, which only made the demons twitch and wail even more.
“Wanna hurry it up there?” Alec asked, glancing at Father Singer as two more came in, this time breaking through the glass windows and climbing over the panes. “Starting to get between a rock and a very hard place here, Father.”
Ben spared a quick glance to Alec and saw how his jaw was set. He knew how focused his brother was now, mind fully focused on protecting the people around him and doing his job. Ben could admire him for it and only wanted to do just as good, eyes going back to the demons that were coming in and shooting at them both once quickly.
More demons started making their way in as soon as the few that were in ear shot dropped from Father Singer’s exorcism, but the effort was near futile. Those bodies were already wounded so bad that the host who was possessed was dead and simply being stepped over by the other demons that were moving at a tauntingly slow speed.
Father Singer started another round of saying the exorcism when he was suddenly shouting while a demon glared in his direction, sending him flying. Ben saw it from the corner of his eye and shot at the demon before one came at him unexpectedly from the side, slamming him in Alec and sending both of their guns to the floor.
It was a perk that they could hold their own in a fight, but demons? Demons had been another thing. They didn’t take pain in the same way that humans or other creatures did. Ben struggled; sending a few punches at the demon before Alec finally scrambled to the shotguns and blasted the thing in the neck.
Ben threw the body off to see the demon escaping in a rush before another grabbed at Alec’s short hair, yanking his head back and grabbing for the gun. Ben moved quickly and slapped the demon twice with the butt of the shotgun to try and help Alec, but it was useless. He quickly glanced over his shoulder to see Max and Father Singer struggling with their own demons – two beating up Max and another that Father Singer was just barely fending off another with some holy water.
He was at a standstill and that was a rare thing. Ben just…didn’t know who to aid or what to do. He took a breath before getting to his feet to kick the demon in the face that had his twin, the demon’s head only lolling back briefly until he kicked again. Ben turned then to fire at one of the demons holding Max, causing it to drop to the ground and escape out the broken window to the surrounding blackness with the remaining demons.
Without much warning, Logan suddenly appeared next to Max and he pressed his palm to the other demon’s forehead, causing it to glow brightly out its eyes before dropping bonelessly to the floor. He looked at Ben, a serious look on his face as he said, “Shut your eyes.” He then raised his voice and added, “Shut your eyes!”
Ben raised his arm to shield his eyes but could still vaguely see a bright white light encompass the entire room. A few thuds sounded and Ben lowered his arm, only to see the group of formerly possessed people all either unconscious or dead on the floor. Max was taking slow, easy breaths, Alec was wincing at he touched a spot on the back of his neck, and Father Singer was taking silent note of the damages from the battle. Ben also noticed that the darkness outside was gone, seemingly assuming the demons were dispersed. He turned his attention to Logan and felt thankful. Should the angel have never showed up, they may not be standing currently.
Silence fell over them and all eyes suddenly fell onto Logan, who said, “The demons are gone. This battle is over.”
Everything settled down after Logan dispersed the demons somehow. He healed Max and Father Singer’s wounds and sent the survivors away. He even sat down with them to explain that the demons are after the twins for reasons unknown to Heaven. This concerned all of them, except Alec who seemed to make a joke out of it saying that he was just ‘so hot that hell wanted him’.
After the explanation, Logan stuck around to stay and keep watch that no more demons would come while Father Singer and Max started to board up the windows. Alec was watching Ben as he dragged the last body to the open area behind the small building to the pile they’d already accumulated. He left it go with a small huffing sound and rolled his neck in an attempt to stretch.
“You doing good there, bro?” Alec asked, raising a brow as he watched Ben step back and almost look remorseful.
Ben’s eyes rose from the pile to meet Alec’s and nodded carefully. “I just…didn’t think he would come back. I didn’t think he cared.” He looked disappointed, like someone just killed his puppy – except they never had a dog to experience the death of.
A mental shrug and Alec was pulling out his lighter to flick it and toss into the pile of bodies. He moved closer and slung and arm around Ben’s shoulder, a comforting smile on his face as he leaned his head against his twin’s. “We could’ve handled ourselves. Did it plenty of other times in the past. All you need is for me and Father Singer to be the caring ones, got it? Not some randomly appearing angel wannabe.” He made a disgusted face before saying, “He doesn’t even look hot like an angel should.”
“…Why would an angel look hot? They were supposed to look heavenly and peaceful.”
Alec sighed, turning to smack his forehead against Ben’s shoulder as the flames started to rise. “Clearly, we haven’t looked at the same angels.” He smirked a little and shook his head before looking at Ben again, who was staring at him curiously. “Ben, seriously, you can’t tell me you’re that dense.” A blink and slight glare from Ben and Alec groaned. “Seriously? You still haven’t been with a woman? Anyone? At all?”
He shook his head and eyes lowered, looking like he was shameful that his brother knew this and Alec sighed a second time. “No, that’s it. You’re either ridiculous or hopeless.” He stood up straight again and grabbed Ben’s wrist to lead him around the house to the front door and straight past everyone into their room, shutting the door behind him and checking the lock.
Deadpanning, Alec pointed towards Ben’s bed and said, “Have a seat.” Ben looked confused, but did just as Alec asked with hands folding in his lap and fidgeting his thumbs.
Alec really couldn’t stand to see his twin anymore awkward and wanted him to move past this phase that he didn’t seem to outgrow. He pulled his jacket off and threw it onto his bed before sitting beside Ben and raising his brow. “Hey, look at me for a second.”
He watched as Ben looked at him, the same expression of curiousness on his face. Alec had to hold back a laugh while he inched closer. Sure, this was going to be the weirdest thing he’d probably ever done, but this was his brother. His baby twin brother. He couldn’t exactly have him walking around being so closed off from women anymore. It might give him a bad rep or something if people got them confused.
Ben shifted a little, almost as if he was going to move back and scoot away, but Alec stopped him by putting a hand on his knee. “Now this might be weird, but don’t move, okay?” The tiniest of nods and Alec smiled a little before pressing his lips to Ben’s. He wasn’t about to be rough with him, not for what was more than likely his first kiss. He just wanted to give Ben something to branch off of, maybe something to peak his interest.
After only a few seconds of the kiss, Alec pulled back and ended up having Ben look at him with a bright expression. He wasn’t really sure if it was one of shock, confusion, or wonder. But it was amusing at least. Alec grinned at Ben, who said, “That was…nice. I liked that.” His voice was quiet and then his eyes dropped to stare at the bedspread. “That’s…what you do with the women then.”
“Not exactly, but I think that might fall into taboos if I start to show you that stuff,” he said through a smirk. “Unless you really want me to…” Who was he to really say no to Ben, in all honesty? Ben had been there for him when others couldn’t and was the only true family he had. Father Singer was nice and all that, sure, but Ben was his blood. That counted for a lot more.
He watched as Ben nodded, eyes still downcast as he gave a small ‘uh huh’. “Okay,” Alec said softly. “Okay. But just know that you should only really do this sorta thing with people you really care about.” A stern look crossed Alec’s features as he explained this to Ben, who’s head immediately shot up.
“I care about you. And Father Singer. And Max.”
And that was the point where Alec figured this was too much and shook his head. “Not just anyone you’re close with. And usually it’s not a family member.” He rolled his eyes at that, because now he was just the pot calling the kettle black. “I’ll explain more then.”
Ben shifted his seated position and turned his body more towards Alec before leaning forward to kiss him. It was a little rougher than Alec anticipated, but hell. He really was a fast learner. He should’ve known this would’ve happened – Ben’s mouth mimicking his to open up and fistfuls of hair and clothing being grabbed. It made Alec wonder what else he’d catch onto…
Alec did not cuddle. Cuddling was weird, too emotional for most people and just went to show that there was an attachment. It was why he usually snuck away or played up an excuse to sleep. It always just made more sense that way. But he had to make an exception this once. Just this once for Ben, who was currently nestled contently at his side. The room was quiet and for a moment – it almost sounded like Ben was purring, which was odd.
He shifted slightly, craning his neck to look at his twin and noticing Ben was looking back up at him. “Um, thank you. For showing me…that.” Alec took note as Ben spoke that the younger seemed to be almost glowing. It could just be his mind playing tricks, but it seemed all too much like a glow to Ben’s skin. It made him want to reach out and touch it.
Which he ended up doing.
Running a hand over Ben’s bare arm, Alec nodded. “Sure thing.” See, there really wasn’t anything a handjob or two couldn’t cure and Alec’s reputation could stay intact should Ben ever have an encounter with someone of the opposite sex, or even the same sex since Alec wasn’t one to judge.
He cleared his throat and said, “So you have the logistics down and a little bit of experience under your belt. Now you’re set for the rest of the world.”
Ben made a confused face for a split second before saying, “There are too many questions that are unanswered still though.” He shook his head, adding, “I don’t think I want to again.”
Just about to open his mouth to make a suggestion and Alec was cut off by a knocking on the door, along with a jiggling of the door knob due to it being locked. Father Singer’s voice then could be heard by their advanced hearing to be saying, “You boys need to get out here. There’s a certain angel that wants to have a word. And I can’t patch up these breaks all by myself.”
Ben sat up, glancing at Alec a short moment before he started grabbing for his shirt. Alec watched as his brother dressed, just lounging in the bed with an almost pleased look on his face. It was weird. He probably shouldn’t have enjoyed that but…he did. Ben was one of the few people Alec could count on and they were close. Maybe a little too close now, he noted to himself. But it wasn’t giving him a bad feeling. He actually had a good one, a warm one.
“Are you going to get dressed? They’re waiting.” Ben’s expression was clearly judging him and Alec rolled his eyes before getting up to get his own clothes on.
“Ruined the moment…” Alec muttered while he was pulling his own shirt overhead. He figured Ben heard and would just let him think what he wanted of the statement since it was bound to bother his twin.
The two stepped out of their room and into the living room where Logan stood by a newly boarded up window. Max and Father Singer were sitting on the couch, looking in their direction with an expression that was mirroring the seriousness of the angel’s.
“What’s going on?” Alec asked, crossing past Ben to sit on the arm of the couch that had been there since as long as the two could remember.
Logan didn’t move, didn’t make even a facial twitch before he said, “There is something… There is word spreading in Heaven about the two of you.”
“Oh, you hear that Ben? We’re popular with the cloudsitters.” He smirked, and Ben simply looked at him with a look that asked him to be serious about the angel’s words. “What? I was serious…” A sigh and Alec corrected himself before Ben started to glare. “What kind of word is spreading? Good or bad?”
“I’m not sure. But they’re concerned with your abilities. Michael has even been speaking of vessels again. I fear the two of you may be next in line for him or one of my other brothers. One of the archangels, in particular.” Logan’s voice didn’t waver as he continued with the monotonous tone, going on to say, “The life as one of their vessels would be a hard one. I myself feel bad as is. Logan, though, knows he would not be healed had he never said yes…” His eyes went downcast at this, and the twins observed the motion carefully. The angel was so stoic, unbreakable, and statue like. This gesture was just…out of the ordinary from the few times that they’d interacted with him.
“You mean…an angel wants to use our body? For what, exactly?” Ben asked, brow knotting curiously.
“It is either to simply walk the Earth that our Father created, or…he has something else in mind.” Logan’s face turned to one of confusion, as if even he couldn’t make out what his brother’s goals for this was – which was definitely concerning to everyone else in the room.
Silence fell until Alec finally asked, “What could the something else be though?”
Glancing out the window again, it sounded almost as if Logan sighed. One couldn’t be sure though because it didn’t seem like something angels would do. They seemed more…robotic. “Father has been absent. It’s possible that Michael is going to take his duties to another level. That he wants to fix the troubles on Earth with his own hands.” He paused, head ducking a moment. “And that will do nothing but cause turmoil in Heaven.”
“So…how do we stop him?” Max finally spoke up, asking the one question that was floating around and on all their minds.
“You can’t. Standing up to an archangel is a large feat. No human could do this.”
Ben and Alec exchanged looks. “Yeah, but here’s the thing… We’re a little better than humans.” Alec looked pleased as he spoke, his little way of showing off even if not trying to put the others in the room down.
“Perhaps you could stand a chance,” Logan started. “But how much of one isn’t something we can be sure of quite yet.” He paused and his glance shifted to the twins, looking at them each for a second or two. “You each just need to remember that should Michael speak with you in any way, that you do not give him permission. I should not be telling you this because it will only put me into questioning by my superiors but…I cannot stand by and just let something happen.”
There were many questions that could be asked between them all. No one was fessing up to them though. All eyes simply watched Logan carefully as he seemed to falter a bit after mentioning that it’ll put him under questioning. The angel then suddenly went rigid and disappeared, no word or warning before doing such.
“This angel business is…” Father Singer didn’t even finish his sentence, too busy shaking his head and frowning in confusion while he rubbed his forehead.
“Confusing. Weird. Completely out of the ordinary compared to what we know?” Alec asked, trying to pick out possibly what Father Singer could have wanted to say.
Father Singer just gave Alec a dull expression before saying, “All of the above, boy. All of it.”
A few hours later once it got dark and day shifted into night, Father Singer suggested that Max stay with them. Alec and Ben finished fixing up the windows and doors temporarily and even fixed up the devil’s traps. When it came to be later, Alec gave up his bed for Max and ended up with Ben curled into his side…again. This time with clothes on, at least.
And it was quiet. Nothing seemed to be amidst in the house. Until the twins drifted into a deeper state of sleep…
It was Ben he went to first because he had been the one to have the stronger faith; the one who believed a little more than the other twin. The dream was a peaceful one where he was sitting on the ledge of what looked to be a tree house that overlooked a grand forest so full of life. And Ben looked happy, content with watching nature’s greeneries and a few small birds flying around over the trees to their nests that they called home.
He approached from behind in light, even steps before standing beside where Ben was sitting where he finally said, “This is very beautiful, Ben.”
Ben visibly twitched and immediately faced him, a horror stricken look on his face at the sudden appearance of this unknown man. “Who’re you? What’re you doing here?” His words came out quickly and in a demanding tone as the man held up his hands to show he meant no harm.
“I came to see you, Ben. My name is Michael.”
“Michael? As in the—“
“Yes. That’s me.”
Ben’s look seemed to soften a little, but he still looked on edge as he jumped down onto the safe floor of the tree house to look Michael over. Michael had appeared in a form that wouldn’t alarm him, one that the archangel actually favored. It was of a man in his early twenties, with black hair and green eyes and an athletic build. It was something that he found humans to be so interested in – appearances.
“What do you want?”
“Ben… You know what I want.” His voice was calm, soothing almost as he spoke and face emitted the same feeling. Michael was just bound to do anything to get one of these boys to say yes to him. Otherwise, he wouldn’t be able to have a proper vessel since there were no backup ones that would suit him as they would. “All you have to do is say one little word – yes. And then we’ll be together and fix this broken world. I’ll even let you see Heaven.” That part might have been part of a lie, but semi-true slightly. Ben would still be in his body, along for the ride to maybe see or hear a little; but the rest he wouldn’t remember. And Michael wasn’t going to give up his vessel in the coming days once he had it.
Ben stiffened, taking a step back and said, “I won’t.” Michael could see in the young man resentment bubbling up. As if someone in the world had lied to him about things, maybe even angels. It wasn’t his fault if humans perceived them to be fluffy winged with halos and skimpy clothing.
“You really are disappointing me, but…” A disappointed look and a sigh later, and Michael took a different approach – something more serious. “If you don’t say yes, I’ll just go to your brother.”
“He won’t say yes either.”
“Are you sure about that?”
He went silent, obviously thinking about this decision that Alec could make. It took a while; minutes flew by without either of them saying a word. Michael simply observed him, noting how wonderfully Ben would suit him. He didn’t break his concentration though since he didn’t want to risk the possibility of Ben just shutting him out entirely. That would be terrible for him to have happen, even worse than getting another nay response.
Ben’s mouth opened and shut as his lips pursed tightly into a thin line. Michael could tell that he wasn’t sure what Alec would say to him, but it was still so very clear that he wasn’t going to give him the yes he wanted. The disappointed expression came back and Michael turned, starting to walk away. “I had hope for you, Ben. Goodbye. I do hope you enjoy this dream while you can.” If the hint of a smirk was on the archangel’s face as he disappeared from the dream, it was only because of what he knew was going to come next.
From Ben’s dream, Michael easily wormed his way into Alec’s. And Alec’s dream was much…different compared to his twin’s. The room he stepped into was dimly lit; spare a few neon lights and one spotlight. He could see Alec sitting on a leather couch by the far wall with two others on either side of him.
“One of these types…” Michael mumbled with a roll of his eyes. Humans were so petty, so easy to appease. They caved so easily to sins of the flesh and he couldn’t sometimes understand why his Father had made the creatures so weak minded and flawed. The angels weren’t like that, absolutely not.
Alec’s eyes didn’t look up as he was too focused on eyeing the man at his side, who Michael noticed looks strikingly like his twin – the other similar to the woman that the archangel had observed them to be friends with. He raised his brow, stepping into the spotlight with hands clapsed neatly in front of him. “Well, Alec, you seem to be having fun here.” A tiny amused look came onto Michael’s face as Alec looked in his direction from where he’d been leaning in to kiss the one that looked like his twin. “Might I trouble a moment of your time?”
“Who are you and…why are you in my dream? Or wait, am I awake?” He was generally confused, but most were. Ben had been an exception since apparently only one of the twins was on guard enough to be concerned about the archangel who was trying to find them.
“No, you’re still asleep. I’m simply paying you a visit via your dream. It’s much easier. Less painful for everyone around.” A careful nod and Michael asked, “Would you mind…?” He gestured towards the two dream people at Alec’s sides and Alec made a face before they two just up and disappeared from his side.
Alec blinked before saying, “Holy shit. You’re…”Maybe the humans were all as dull as he thought since this one seemed to understand who he was right off the bat. Michael would have been proud, but there was business to be had currently.
“Yes. I am. Now, I have a proposition for you, Alec. And it would do you good to listen before you answer…”
Ben woke up ten minutes after he spoke with Michael in his dream. It was weird, a little beyond that honestly since he didn’t know angels could do that. His eyes were wide as he stared at the ceiling until he realized he was fully awake, that it was still dark out, and that Alec was no longer at his side.
“Alec?” he called, sitting up as he felt the empty spot where his brother had been hours before. It didn’t occur to him that Max was half asleep in the bed across for theirs, that his loud tone would wake her. He wasn’t concerned though and was more stricken at his twins being missing. “Alec!” The shout echoed through the house as Ben realized where his brother had gone.