Characters/Pairings: Guerrero, Chance
Summary: Written for this prompt on comment_fic: Human Target, Guerrero(/Chance), "How did you - ?" "Angel, dude." "As in - ?" "As in I am one."
Five against one were pretty good odds where Chance was concerned, but that was before the prongs of a taser had lodged just inside his collar (lucky shot, you bastard) and dropped him writhing to the floor. The guards didn’t waste time after that.
But that was then, and this was an eternity later. The world behind Chance’s eyelids was lit by star bursts of pain, but even those were fading now, receding into the thick, dark silence that had encroached as the beating continued. God, he was tired. No. He should move. He should fight, should do...something. But. It was so much easier, this. Just lying here, eyes closed, listening to the guards’ strained grunts turn to barks of confusion, to sharp cries of surprise.
“Who the hell are you?” Someone asked.
There was a noise like styrofoam rubbing together in the mouthpiece of a bullhorn, then Chance’s vision washed red as something bright went off above him.
“A bomb,” He thought. Thinking hurt, too. Maybe he should stop that.
“...A real pain in the ass sometimes, you know that?”
The voice seemed to be coming to him through three feet of cotton. That’s about what his head felt like, anyway. Chance made a vague, wet sound and ran his tongue over his lips, then tried to form words and realized that he couldn’t get his tongue and his teeth quite in sync.
“Relax, man. It’ll come to you.”
Watered down irritation and a high note of stress were plain in his voice, but there was amusement there, too. At least Chance’s injuries couldn’t be that serious, if Guerrero was willing to crack a joke.
“Here.” Said Guerrero. The rim of something hard and plastic pressed between Chance’s lips. He parted them, and in a moment lukewarm water trickled over his tongue and down his parched throat.
“No,” Chance croaked, finally. “I mean— yeah.”
Chance licked his lips again. “’S fine. Thanks.”
With a little more work he managed to open his eyes. Interesting. Apparently the world had decided to bleed into one grayish-whitish mass while he was out.
“How many fingers, dude?” Guerrero asked.
Chance squinted. “Um. Fou—Thrr...ee?”
Guerrero frowned. “Was that a four or a three?”
“Definitely, maybe, a three. Ow.”
The latter emerged as he tried to lift his head from where it was propped on Guerrero’s thigh. Guerrero pinned him down with a finger, but didn’t stop Chance when he raised a shaky hand to inspect the damage to his skull. His fingers stuck to his hair and came away bloody.
“It’s not pretty,” Guerrero said, frowning. “But you’ll live. Chance, stop poking it.”
“It feels weird.” Chance said; it reminded him of that tickling sensation he got in his teeth sometimes, only dulled.
“Yeah, well, it’s not a pimple, so trying to pop it isn’t going to do you any favors.”
Guerrero grasped Chance’s hand and guided it back to his side.
“Your hand’s warm.” Chance said. He lolled his head right until he was more or less staring directly up into Guerrero’s face. Guerrero peered back at him beneath the rims of his glasses, eyes narrowed slightly.
“Your hands. They’re warm.”
“And...?” Guerrero asked.
“No, I mean really warm.” Chance’s brow furrowed. “Like, hot.”
“Uh. Okay, dude. Not sure what to say about that.”
And Guerrero did seem a bit pinker than usual. That, or the color of his undershirt was smudging with his skin tone and screwing up Chance’s currently questionable powers of perception.
“Hey.” He’d have snapped his fingers if he could find the energy to move his arm. “What was that light?”
“Before I passed out, there was this bright light, like a flash bomb. And a really awful noise.”
Guerrero was quiet long enough to make Chance wonder if he wasn’t slurring through his words again. He started to repeat himself when Guerrero abruptly slid him off his thigh and said, “We’ve got to get you out of here,” then stooped to help haul him to his feet.
There were...shadows on the wall. Granted, Chance’s world was still fuzzy at the edges, but those marks definitely hadn’t been there when he’d first run into this corridor. Moreover, they were distinctly person-shaped.
Chance couldn’t do anything but let himself be dragged along, though he did keep staring at the people-shadows until it strained his neck to look at them.
“Seriously man,” He said. “What happened while I was out?”
Chance’s eyes narrowed. “Guerrero.”
“It was me.”
“What did you do?”
There was a long pause while Chance turned those words over in his mind.
“Okay. How did you incinerate them simultaneously, on the spot, while stand—”
“Because I’m an angel. It’s what we do, dude. I mean, not on purpose. We’re not supposed to, anyway. But there are definitely benefits to being too glorious for the human eye to behold.”
Chance barked out a laugh. It took him a second to realize Guerrero wasn’t joining him, and a second longer for him to furrow his brow and squint down at Guerrero’s unflinching face.
“You’re kidding, right?”
“No. I’m not.”
Guerrero raked his free hand through his hair. “Look. Believe me or not, Chance, I don’t really care. You asked me what happened, so I told you.”
“How could you possibly be an angel? Aren’t they supposed to be—” He shook his head. “Innocent? Holy?”
“Supposed to be.” Guerrero said. “I’m not.”
His jaw twitched, Chance noticed, and there was a hardness to his brow that only ever appeared whenever lines of questioning took turns he disagreed with. On any other occasion Chance would have dropped the subject there, but this was too surreal.
“Guerrero, I really don’t get—”
They’d reached the front door of the building, and Guerrero didn’t even pause as they passed through it. As in through it, straight through the glass and steel without any mention of keycodes, panic bars, or knobs. There was an ambulance parked outside. A very familiar figure lay prone on a stretcher that was being loaded into it.
“What?” Chance peeped.
“You’re gonna be fine, dude. You’re not dead, you’re just a little...disconnected. Hey, if it makes you feel better, consider all of this a dream.”
Guerrero guided him into the stretcher, next to the body. It had to be ‘the body,’ because Chance knew that if he tried to process what was in front of him with anything more defined than that he’d soon be vacationing in a padded cell.
“Just lie down,” Guerrero said. Chance felt the weight of Guerrero’s hand between his shoulder blades, pressing gently but firmly, and faced with no other logical options all Chance could do was obey. He clambered onto the stretcher and lined himself up with the body as best he could. He hesitated. He turned to Guerrero again, eyes wide.
Guerrero just smiled and mimed lying on a pillow.
“Go on.” He said. “Trust me.”
“You owe me an explanation.”
“If you remember all of this? Sure.”
Chance shook his head. Then he took a deep breath, closed his eyes and started to fall—
The first thing he heard was the steady peep, peep, peep of an EKG machine. Then, distantly, the hum of an AC.
A warm British voice reached Chance from somewhere outside of his field of vision.
“The old man just left,” Baptiste said. Chance heard his footsteps as he approached the bedside. In a second he came into view, all smiles despite the worried pinch to his eyes. “He’ll be back in a half-hour or so. He’ll be sorry to see that he missed your glorious reawakening.”
“Glorious.” Chance swallowed. Squeezed his eyes shut. Something niggled at the part of his mind that wasn’t over saturated with painkillers.
“Guerrero? Hell if I know. He left about a week ago, remember?”
He had, Chance realized. As soon as they’d finished the job in Rio, Guerrero had informed them that he’d been hired by a corporate client and promptly jetted off for the far flung parts of who-knew-where. Well, the old man knew, of course, and Chance could find out too if he could just remember why he cared so much.
“Maybe the brain damage was worse than we thought.” Chance could tell Baptiste was only half joking.
“No, I’m fine. I’m just...”
“Rest, mate.” Baptiste said, and clapped him gently on the shoulder. “ Don’t worry about work. Just focus on recovering, yeah?”
Chance coughed. “Mhm. Yeah.”
“Tell you what, I’ll go get you some water. You sound parched.”
He stopped, then came back into view. “Yeah?”
“Was it you that pulled me out of the warehouse?”
“Was there anything...unusual, about it?”
“What do you mean?”
“Was there anything strange on the walls?”
“The walls? Ah! You mean that weird silhouette mural? Didn't really go with the decor, did it? I thought it was a bit tasteless myself, but what do I know about art?”
Chance nodded a little, and managed to twitch the un-swollen corner of his mouth into something like a smile.
“I’ll be back in a minute, mate.” Baptiste said, and he stepped out, leaving Chance to stare at the speckled tile above and wonder.