"Why's it raining?"
"The angels are crying, my dear boy." The little boy's world spun as he was hoisted up onto the man's lap. "They're sad, see."
"Why they cryin', though?" Wide reddish brown eyes gazed curiously into the blue, fatherly ones above.
"Nobody knows," Oliver Kirkland murmured as he softly pressed his lips to the little boy's forehead.
"Not even me..."
Years later, those same reddish brown eyes gazed out at a wet, rainy sky and an open plain. They were now hardened, cold, and lifeless. He didn't need childish fantasies anymore.
"Angels don't exist," Alec Jones growled quietly to himself. Thunder rumbled in the distance, and lightning forked as a tanned hand let the flap of his tent drop back into place.
Slowly, Alec's eyes scanned his "army." They were a motley, ragtag assortment for sure, made up of Indians, and doctors, farmers, mostly men who'd never held a sword or a real rifle until now. One thing bonded every man there, however. Each soldier, no matter the pigment of their skin of trade, bore the grim determination of men who were willing to fight, men who were willing to die, lose everything for their cause. For freedom.
Alec's breath caught in his throat for a moment. They were here, in some way for him, fighting a losing battle against a superpower. Less than half of these men would come out alive, for one single man-- No. He couldn't think like that. Thinking like that would topple everything, his whole barely balanced mess of ports and cities and people. Instead, Alec cleared his throat.
"You know what to do," He growled. "Go out and prove to me you can do it. Oh, and try not to die. Understand?"
A chorus of "AYE"s and, "YES SIR!"s along with other affirmative expressions made Alec smile, if only slightly. Even in these cold, dark days when only man and demon existed, there was a slight ray of hope. All he had to do was make sure that it wasn't destroyed.
The plan was simple but deadly-- snipe off the Brits one by one in small groups, run to the next checkpoint, and pray to the empty sky that they didn't catch you.
"Shut up," Alec hissed to the two that were quietly giving their position away. "The cavalry's coming." Hoofbeats broke the rain into steady beats, but all else was strangely silent. Normally, they would be shouting orders, or at least talking.
The hairs on the back of Alec's neck rose when a riderless cavalry entered into the clearing. "MOVE!" Alec hauled himself up as fast he could, whipping around to find the riders of those horses behind him, with Alec's five men bloody on the groud. Leading the small British group, twirling a bloody knife, was the Devil himself, sopping wet stawberry blond hair matching oh so "spiffingly" with his uniform. "Oliver."
Said Devil chuckled in that stupid ridiculously happy voice of his. "You know, dear boy, if you wanted to play hide-and-seek for the fate of this little 'country,' all you had to do was tell me. Nobody would have had to die, and you would be back with me, safe and sound~!"
'Don't you dare,' Alec's teeth were clenched, holding his blunt rifle as best he could.
"Hm?Are you listening, Alec my boy?" Oliver tilted his head, and his blue eyes seemed to swirl, almost hypnotically. "You should pay attention when someone speaks to you-"
Oliver sighed as the barrel of Alec's offending gun pointed at his forehead. He gave Alec this pitying expression, as if Alec were a fond pet that had to be 'put down'. "I know you're proud of what you've made, my son, but its time to stop all this nonsense." Oliver's silver tongue was laying it on thick, the voice of a parent who was giving a naughty boy his medicine. "Time to come home, Alec." A pale freckled hand extended, just as it had many other times before, and bluish purple eyes tempted, whispering for him to be safe, telling tales of days when Alec was happy, when all he ever wanted was to be exactly like his Daddy, a big strong empire that chased away all the bad guys. Alec's dark reddish eyes locked for a moment. He took a small step forward, raking a small glance around as if in a dream. Cruel reality finally struck Alec in the face when his eyes rested on the bloody bodies of his people on the ground. That was what happened if reason came to Oliver. If anything stood in his way, it was cut down mercilessly and then sugarcoated with fake promises and smiles. Seeing that reminded Alec of why he fought.
Being trapped was a fate worse than death.
"Let me go, Oliver." Alec's voice was low and calm, and thunder rumbled in the distance. "I'm not a child anymore." Shock, then anger, transformed Oliver's face, as he realized that his perfect plan wasn't locking into place, that once again, Alec was breaking the rules.
"H-how dare you," the freckled man's hand trembled with the bayonet clutched in white knuckles. "After everything I've done! You ungrateful little boy... how dare you... how DARE YOU DISOBEY YOUR FATHER! </i>"
Alec's heart nearly stopped when Oliver kickstarted into motion, raising the bayonet, aiming, and striking Alec's right eye, for merely a second. That second was enough to make blood spray, it was enough time pain to scream across his senses, enough time for survival to kick in. Alec knew how to fight. Oliver had left his side pitifully open, and Alec's leg snapped out. With a small grunt of surprise and pain, the weapon dislodged itself and Oliver Kirkland collapsed.
Alec stood tall over the man he once aspired to be, the same man who murdered and lied and was a coward. Now, on the ground in defeat.
"You?" Alec's voice trembled, like his body and his fists clenched in rage. "A father?!" A single drop of blood rolled down Alec's cheek. His hair was beginning to stain from the red liquid, he wanted to scream from pain of all kinds, but instead Alec grit his teeth in a ferocious snarl.
I cannot be weak. Not now.
Fear, real fear and regret haunted the bluish eyes as Oliver whimpered on the soggy ground. "P-please, Alec-"
"Shut UP!" Alec shouted, stomping his foot as blood sprayed down from his right eye. "You are a piece of shit EXCUSE for father! A father is supposed to be there when his son needs him, and you were only there when it suited you, you SELFISH BASTARD! </b>"
This time, the words were accompanied with a swift kick to Oliver's stomach. He was crying now, sobbing like a pitiful child.
"My name is Alec Jones," The speaker growled, and he leaned into Oliver's freckled, dirty face, one foot on the Brit's hip. "I don't have a father."
Those words seemed to strike the most, enough to make Oliver stop his blubbing for a split second, but then only to sob harder, clinging to Alec's leg before he was thrown off.
"Get off my land, old man." Alec growled down at the new stranger, then looking up with his left eye burning, "AND THAT GOES FOR THE REST OF YOU!" Alec yelled. "Tell your tea-bastard friends that this is American territory now. Unless you'd like to contradict me?" Nobody stepped up.
"Any member of your army that's still on my shores at dawn tomorrow will be scalped and hung." With that, Alec Jones walked away an orphan, the angels weeping on every blade of newly American grass, pouring out the skies for a little boy, forced to grow up and stand all on his own far too soon. A little boy now a man, who no longer trusted anyone but himself; walking away from that bloodstained field with a victory that only weighed on his heart.
A heart without angels to lift it up is a heavy burden, after all.