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The Harold Angel Sings

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John walked through the streets of Heaven. His steps were heavy and his wings drooped, brushing against the gold paving stones that made up the street. His white feathers were stained black with demon blood and his muscles ached. It had been a long day of killing demons, but he had to admit that he had enjoyed himself, it was what he had been created for, after all.

All he wanted to do was remove his torn tunic and relax, but first he needed to see Harold. There were many angels, each one different and special and unique, but John preferred the company of the small librarian.

He continued his way to The Celestial Library and walked past buildings of every shape, style and size. There was a 50's diner next to a 1700's manor and those were across the street from a 1500's castle. It always him amazed that humans lived in so many varied structures. All angels needed were soft nests.

Seeing the neon sign for Jess' Diner gave him an idea. He open the diner's glass and metal door and stepped inside. His bare feet stepped onto a white and black checkered floor and he breathed in the scent of grease and meat. The sound of sad country music coming from a colourful juke box tickled his ears. Several people were sitting in bright red booths eating their breakfasts, lunches and dinners.

He went up to a stainless steel counter and sat on a stool covered in red fabric. Jess came up to him. Her blond hair was cut into a bob and her pale blue dress was covered with a white apron.

'Hey, John. What can I do for you?' She asked with a smile. He wasn't well versed in what humans found attractive, but he thought that was a stunning smile.

'I'd like a piece of apple pie and a large hot tea to go.'

'Coming right up,' Jess said as she went over to the pie carousel.

The diner door opened and a little bell above it rang. Jess looked up and smiled. It was different from the one she gave John, it lit up her whole face and he didn't even have to turn around to know who was in the diner. There was only one person who made her smile like that. Sure enough, Grace came up to the counter and sat her bag full of paint brushes on the floor.

Grace brushed her red hair behind her ear, the gold ring around her finger glistened.

'Grace! Did you finish you're painting?' Jess asked as she cut a piece of pie for John.

'I did. It turned out even better than I had hoped.'

Jess put the piece of pie into a brown paper bag and sat it in front of John along with tea in a plastic cup.

'Wonderful. I'll be off work in an hour if you want to stick around.'

Grace smiled as Jess stood in front of her and took Jess' hands in hers. She kissed Jess' hand and Jess laughed. 'There's no place I'd rather be.'

John tried not to watch such an intimate moment, but he couldn't look away. He knew he was a very handsome angel and could have any mate he wanted, but he was much better at killing demons than he was talking about his feelings.

As Jess walked out from behind the counter and she took Grace's hand, pulling her close.

As Grace brushed her lips against Jess' neck, John left the diner. He felt himself wanting to kiss a certain someone's neck too. He might have resigned himself to never finding a mate, but that didn't mean he couldn't want it.

As John walked out of the diner Grace came up him.

'I almost forgot to ask, I'm almost done with your painting.'

'Great. Just leave in my nest when you're done.'

As John walked away his steps felt a little lighter. Soon he would have a painting of Harold. Which wasn't nearly as good as the real thing, but it would do.

He walked through the crowds of Heaven and reached The Celestial Library. It stood in the middle of green grass and brightly colored flowers. It wasn't so much a library as it was a tower that stretched high into the sky. The white stone that made up the walls glistened in the sunshine.

He pushed open the heavy wooden door and stepped in the library. The white stone walls were filled with shelf upon shelf of every book that was or would ever be. The white stone that made up the floor was cool under his feet. The air was thick with the sweet scent of the flowers that were outside.

He walked through the library, sunlight filtered through stain glass windows and turned his skin into a rainbow of different colors, until he came to Harold's office door. The wood was dark and carved with a multitude of different animals. He knocked on the door.

'Come in,' Harold said from inside the office.

He opened the door and stepped inside.

'John! John! John!' Bear exclaimed as he ran up to John and stood up to put his put his paws on John's chest. John reached down and ruffled Bear's fur. Bear's tongue lolled out and his brown wings shook.

The office was shades of brown. The walls and floor were made of wood, the same as Harold's large desk that was covered with paper and books. Speaking of books, there were several stacks on the floor that reached the ceiling.

'You get me doughnut?' Bear asked hopefully.

'Not today, buddy.'

'Is okay. Still love you.'

Harold walked up to John. 'To what do I owe your visit?'

'I thought you might like some apple pie and a cup of tea,' John said as he handed the bag to Harold.

Harold smiled as he opened the bag and breathed deeply.

'Why thank you.'

John shrugged. 'Don't mention it.' Angel didn't need to eat, but he knew how much Harold liked apple pie.

'Would you like to join me on the lawn?'

John grinned. Harold didn't have to ask, but he always did. 'Lead the way.'

As they walked down the streets of Heaven, John walked close to Harold. Harold smelled like books and dust. Being so close to Harold made John want to tell him all his secrets, but he couldn't. One secret in particular might ruin their friendship and that was something John wouldn't be able to stand.

Harold wore his dark grey suit, underneath it was a a white a shirt and deep red tie. For someone who always said that he wasn't good at human interaction, he dressed like a human.

They walked out of the main part of Heaven and made their way to a more wooded area. Sunlight shinned through red, yellow and orange tree leaves making them look like stained glass. The wind picked up and ruffled John's hair.

They made their way to an opening in the grove of trees and climbed a hill, the grass was soft against John's feet.

John sat of the hill and Harold joined him.

'Would you like me to care for your wings? Harold asked.

'Sure,' John said as Harold moved behind him and began to straighten and smooth John's feathers.

John sighed as Harold's fingers worked their way through his feathers. John was solitary even for an angel, but even he couldn't resist being preened.

Preening wasn't just about straightening feathers, but about trust and their was no one John trusted more than Harold.

As Harold worked, he started to hum.

'Will you sing?' John asked as he felt his tight back muscles loosen.

'Anything in particular?'

'Nah, Finch,' John said using Harold old nickname. His wings were yellow with black tips just like a finch and it fit.

'You consider me the young apprentice
Caught between the Scylla and Charybdis
Hypnotized by you if I should linger
Staring at the ring around your finger...,' Harold began to sing.

As his words filled the air and his fingers moved through John's feathers, there was no place John wanted to be.

'I hate to interrupt, but we have a situation,' Joss said from somewhere on John's left.

John opened his eyes and looked at Joss who was standing at the bottom of the hill. She didn't look happy, her light blue wings trembled, and nothing good could come from that.