[[Ambiance: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_LVfsrS7fUk]]

I could be in trouble here. Yes, yes indeedy I could. 

The rain pounded her. She let it, let the driving storm and rain threaten to knock her off her perch. Her tail, wrapped firmly around a little scraggly tree growing out of a crack in the rocks, held her stead as she perched precariously on what might charitably be called a tiny ledge on the sheer cliff face a little below her roost tucked into a hidden cave in the wall of stone and quite a ways above the Greywatch camp. In the dark and storm, she wasn’t visible from the ground, except to those with augmented sights like her own. Night and weather did not cloud her eyes. She watched, observed, recorded in her mind. Her wings were tucked tight to her back, but she wore no cloak, and only a little red vest and loose (when they weren’t soaked and plastered to her skin) red breeches. 

If she was cold, it didn’t show. Rain dripped off her nose. 

I could be in some deep ass shit. 

I just- fucking spilled it, told her everything, on the second date. What the fuck, Ana? A pretty woman bats her eyelashes and you just up and cave? 

But “pretty woman” didn’t exactly fit Zetera. She was more than that. 

Her cheeks heated even in the coolness of the storm, as she remembered strong arms around her- someone BEING there. Someone… caring. Believing. Drawing her close when she did not expect it. Silent attention, instead of condemnation, when she talked about her weakness. 

Demon hunters were, as she’d told Zetera, badass motherfuckers- monsters to give monsters nightmares. Weakness was not tolerated. The weak died. 

So when she’d turned up on what was left of her legs after bodily dragging herself to Illidan’s doorstep and demanding they let her inside; demanding they make her into a weapon against the Legion. It went about as well as one could expect- they laughed at her and left her outside the gates to die. 

Until Kaldanos, of course. The only other person who ever gave a shit. But she didn’t even like to talk about it with him. He already knew, and respected her enough to keep from bringing it up… Well. Mostly. When he wasn’t being a fuckass goading her to better herself. 

….Magnificent bastard. 

And Ana started weak; in the eyes of many, she ended that way, as well, still was. An imp- who in the fel chose an imp? How useful would THAT be against the Legion’s hordes of wrathguards and fel lords and succubi? There was no place for weakness in the motherfucking Illidari. 

And yet

The flush creeped down her cheeks to her neck and collarbone, a deeper shade of lavender now; to the tips of her long ears and all their myriad, mismatched piercings. Zetera, sitting with her on the edge. Zetera, saying she was worth defending. Zetera, keen mind and quietly gentle smiles and sly wit. 

Zetera who didn’t care, who said there were other kinds of strength. Ana knew it, of course. Kal’s lessons stuck. (BASTARD.) But… It was one thing to hear it from him, and another from Zee, which made no real sense but remained true nonetheless.

A trickle of… fear? Something else, just as potent but different? slid down her spine like the cold water from the storm. 

This- this could be… very bad. 

Second thoughts, kiddo? Don’t blame you. What would someone like her be doing with-

Anach-Kyree slammed the door shut on that thought and her demon both, locking them into silence for the rest of the night. 

Nah. It’ll be fine. It’ll be fine! I mean, whats the worst that could happen? I make horrible life choices? What more can the world do to men that I haven’t done to myself? 

The thought, oddly, cheered her a little. 

“Fuckit,” she declared to the night. “And fuck you too,” Ana added, down at herself. “I’ve done worse for less.” 

And she stretched her wings, reshuffling, settling in for the long haul under stormy skies to wait for morning’s light.

Author Cael
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