Real at last

"Azrael," whispered the woman beside her invisible man as she stared at Violet warily.

Azrael, so that was his name, Violet thought.

"Hush, Naamah," he replied.

Stepping forwards slightly, he raised a hand, in a kind of wave and waited silently, leaving his hand in the air. Violet's heart leapt at the small gesture; he remembered her panic attacks. She lifted her hand to meet his, feeling the calloused skin of his palm beneath hers. She smiled slightly. This was okay, touching like this was fine, this was safe.

"Hi," Violet murmured to him, meeting his mismatched eyes.

"Hello," he responded, a small smile curling his lips. "How have you been?"

Violet looked at the other woman, Naamah, briefly before returning her gaze to him; she didn't like to discuss her personal wellbeing in the company of strangers. He seemed to realise, letting his hand drop as he stepped back.

"This is my closest friend, Naamah," he introduced her. "Naamah, this is Violet."

A small gasp escaped Naamah's lips. "This is she?"

"This is her," he confirmed.

Naamah stepped forward suddenly, making Violet step back in fear, clutching her book tightly in her hands. In doing so, she tripped, falling and hitting her head. The last thing she saw as the darkness swirled in was her invisible man - for whom she now had a name - rushing forward in an attempt to catch her.

 

When she awoke again, she was lying in her bed and her vision was a little blurry when she tried to open her eyes. After a couple of minutes of staring at her ceiling, she managed to look around her room without feeling too dizzy. Sat in a chair at the end of her bed, with one leg crossed over the other and a book in his hand, was her invisible man. Azrael.

His pale hair glinted dully in the gloom, the only light the one on her desk. His locks were messy and tousled, just as she remembered them. She looked at the way the light flickered in his eyes, his left green and his right brown, almost black. She'd often wondered how they'd come to be that way, and which was the natural colour. He was dressed in the simple clothes he always wore and his cloak was draped over the back of the chair. Even sat in the chair the way he was, huddled slightly, he was tall; his long, lithe body obviously powerful in the same way that a leopard was powerful before it decided to pounce.

What she remembered most about him, though, was his wings. One twitched as he sat quietly, making her smile a little.

"I knew you were real," she said quietly.

His head snapped up at the sound of her voice. "Who said otherwise?" he asked gently, closing the book and placing it carefully on her desk.

"Everyone. The... counsellors, the psychologists, all my siblings. Everyone thought I was crazy."

"Well, I assure you: I'm real."

"I'm glad to hear it," she sighed.

He smiled and, for the first time, Violet noticed that he was actually quite handsome.

The End

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