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Title: Nakama (Mythklok, Chapter 47)
Author: tikistitch
Rating: NC-17
Summary: Go go Dethklok rangers.
Warnings: Slash, AU, OCs, swearing. There's some reference to past abuse in this one: putting it out there in case it gonna cause upset.
Notes: Notes after the jump.

Just an admin note, this is probably the last proper chapter I'll get posted before our vacation.

Mythklok is a Metalocalypse AU. If you're behind and for some strange reason wanna catch up, the best place is my fic journal, [personal profile] tikific, where you are welcome to come visit the bits I’ve written and maybe poke them with a pointed stick. I've also written a general introduction in case you wanna jump in the middle of things, or have forgotten all this stuff due to Real Life.

Last time: Charles questioned his fitness to continue as Dethklok’s manager after Skwisgaar said some kind of weird angel insult about his weird demon kid. There was a confrontation in the Australian outback that did not end happily for Lady Bast.


As so many times these past few months, Charles found himself to be distracted.

What had happened was this: he was supposed to be working in his office while Boon played safely and contentedly, confined by Raziel's extensively angel baby-proofed playpen (patent pending). The child was surrounded by yawning piles of toys: enough distractions, one would think, to keep him content until graduate school.

However, this past week, his cousin, Abby, had astounded the world by pulling herself up to a standing position. This had caused considerable excitement and photo documentation among the parents, a rather large yawn from her slacker brother, Liam, but had evidently evinced some kind of competitive spirit in Elias.

He was now, as he had been for the last 20 minutes, using the playpen walls to slowly and carefully pull himself up to some resemblance of bipedalism. At that point, he would huff and puff and release his grip on the edge of the playpen, upon which there was a short struggle between rather poorly developed leg muscles versus a rather amply developed baby butt. The latter won out, and ht would inevitably plummet to earth upon the same at that point, angry and confused expression on his young face.

Charles, having witnessed similar behavior from his son some days prior, had brought it to the attention of Ganesh, who supposedly had some qualification as a physician. Charles immediately demanded to know what terrible birth defect haunted their only son, as evinced by this lack of success.

"I wouldn't worry, jaanu," Ganesh had laughed. "He's perfectly fine. Their legs simply aren't strong enough yet. Just remain patient."

But, this was clearly ridiculous advice. Charles, as a good parent, knew only one thing: there was some kind of competition now raging, between Elias and Abby, and HIS KID WAS GONNA WIN.

Even if it meant resorting to somewhat unorthodox measures.

"Boon!" Charles told his frustrated child. Charles shut his laptop. Second quarter tax deadlines could wait. This matter was clearly important. "Make yourself light! Like when you fly." He was now standing over the playpen, miming flying by flapping his hands.

Boon cocked his head at Charles.

"OK, Daddy is an idiot." He struggled to recall the Common Angelic word for "light," and made a mental note to have his Ophanim librarians try to bring him a Common to English dictionary. He didn't want to go through the bother of True Forming to demonstrate, so he picked up Elias and made himself very light. "See?" he asked, bouncing on his toes. "Light."

Elias looked happy, but still a bit baffled by the logic. Charles decided a more dramatic demonstration was in order, and so strode towards the wall, Boon in his arms, and then continued walking up the wall for some distance.

This was obviously the best thing that had every happened, to baby or man, as evinced by Elias’ delighted squealing and pointing. It was at this point, then, that the purpose of the demonstration was probably discarded, and Charles was then persuaded to continue up the wall and thence for some distance across the ceiling.

“It is FUCKING WEIRD when you do that.”

Charles looked up – which was actually looking down – to see Nathan Explosion glaring up at them.

“Boon, should we go down and visit Uncle Nathan, or should we continue mocking him from our lofty perch?” he grinned at Elias. The decision was made to continue down to ground level at the present time.

“What the fuck?” Nathan grumbled, as he gathered a still giddy Elias in his arms.

“We, uh, needed some fresh air.” Nathan looked more than a little skeptical, so Charles continued, “Abby is trying to walk.”

Nathan glowered. “OUR KID NEEDS TO WALK FIRST.”

“Well. Yeah. His ass is too big.”

“You’re a big ass baby!” Nathan scolded Elias, who was laughing and gesturing towards the wall.

“Oh, uh, no, Boon,” Charles told the child. “Nathan can’t do that.” And then he said a Common phrase, which Boon repeated.

Nathan frowned. “Something about WINGS?”

“Uh. Boon doesn’t understand that not everybody is an angel. So, uh, some of us are angels, and the rest of you are no wing angels.”



“That’s WEIRD. Babies are WEIRD.”

“Well. Yeah. So, are you guys ready to go to Japan?”

“What? Nah.”

“Oh. Why not?”

“Eh. I figure you’ll send guys to get us before the jet leaves.”

“That’s, uh, not really what I was getting at. You guys are all prepared-“

“We’re all getting COOL GIANT ROBOTS, right?”

“Well, yeah, but the point-“

“Then we’re ready! Quit FREAKING OUT.”

“Yeah, I don’t know why I worry.”

“Want me to teach your fucking kid to walk? So you can do your job?” Nathan asked, pointing at the closed laptop.

Charles crossed his arms and scowled. “How the hell are you gonna teach my kid to walk?”

Nathan rolled his eyes and set Elias on the ground, facing away from him, so the baby’s feet were just touching the ground, and then grabbed him under the armpits. Elias looked up at Nathan with wide eyes.

“OK, STEP!” ordered Nathan.

Elias stuck a chubby leg out in front of him and brought his body forward. He looked back up at Nathan and gawped.

Charles was gawping too.

“This is the way us NO WING ANGELS gotta learn,” Nathan explained.

Charles nodded.

“C’mon, angel kid,” said Nathan, hefting the boy and proceeding out of the office.

Charles sat down at his desk. “Get pictures!” he called after them. He opened his laptop, patting his jacket for a nonexistent pack of Marlboros, and stared at a spreadsheet for a long moment. And then he closed his laptop and brought out his Dethphone.

“Hey, Raziel! Yeah. Uh-huh. Guess who took a step?”

Tokyo, Japan....


“Yes. Nathan. This is Kitsune’s band,” Charles explained.

“I dunno, dude, sounds kinda gay.”

To Nathan’s surprise, Charles grinned and said, “You have no idea.” Then Ganesh was there, and the two wandered off, no doubt to discuss some kinda angelic douchery.

Nathan munched his squid soy chips and leaned over to gaze out the window of the Tokyo Fantastic Mega Superdome’s VIP seating area to the thronging crowd below. This did not seem terribly brutal. Nor metal at all. In fact, it seemed like an awful lot of screaming girls. Not that there was anything wrong, in principle, with throngs of screaming girls.

Speaking of screaming girls, he spotted Skwisgaar off in a corner. The guitarist was oddly unencumbered by groupies. And huddled over his phone.

"Hey, Skwis!" Nathan crunched.

Skwisgaar looked nervous, and pocketed his Dethphone.

"Who was it dude?"

"Ums. No ones." The Swede hurried off.

"Fucking mysterious douche bag," Nathan grumbled. "Hey, Murderface, dude." He hoped the bassist would be in a somewhat un-douche-like mood. "You know what the story is on these dudes? Because seriously, it looks suspiciously un-brutal."

"It isch indeed schuschpiciousch in itsch apparent lack of brutality," Murderface agreed sullenly.

"Doods, dey're based on da concept o' da bishounen,” Pickles informed them.

"What the fuck is that supposed to be?" Nathan asked.

"Dey're pretty boys. So pretty dey look like girls. Da girls eat dat shit up."

"Girls like boys who look like girls?" Nathan repeated, spilling ika chips all down his front.

"It'sch the firscht I've heard of thisch," Murderface declared.

The stage suddenly darkened, and, to much dry ice and the sound of Thus Sprach Zarathrusa, and five zoot suited young men appeared posed on the stage. They were suddenly dramatically silhouetted in spotlights, and a cheery pop tune began to play. The band started to dance an intricately choreographed routine.

I got the love reaction
There is attraction
Electric reality
Boys love boyslove

You my wa loli
You are my only
Subduction tetherball
Boys love boyslove

You tinged with fire
My one desire
Boys love boyslove

"Some dood had a lotta fun wit' Google translate," smiled Pickles.

“Why does that one have hair like Kim Jung Il?” Nathan asked, pointing out a boy with a particularly ponderous pompadour.

“Dunno, dood. Mebbe he’s da tough one?”

“The tough one?”

“Yoo know, da boy bands, dey got da types. Da tough one, da cute one….”

“Wait, I thought they were all supposed to be CUTE!”

“Yeh, but one dood is da kind you wanna bring home t’ yer mom.”

“Which one is THE CUTE ONE?” Nathan demanded.

“Huh. Mebbe dat dood?”

“Why is he cuter than the others?”

“I dunno. He’s got kind of a cute ass.”


“Nat’an! Dood! Yoo asked!”

“I don’t think that one’s assch is any more attractive than that one’s assch,” Murderface helpfully pointed out.

“You don’t know what you’re talking about Murderface!” Nathan scolded. “His ass isn’t that great!”

“Is there a problem?” Charles, who had just wandered up with Ganesh, asked.

“We’re arguing over which band member has the BEST ASS!” Nathan declared.


“Oh. It’s clearly that one!” Ganesh cheerfully told them.

“Oh, yeahhhhhh!” Nathan agreed.

“Yeh, yer raight, dood,” Pickles said.

“Yeah, I guessch,” Murderface muttered.

“Thanks, Ganesh dude,” Nathan told him.

“Why were you checking out Yaoi Teardrop’s asses anyway,” Charles asked Ganesh as they walked away.

“I have just solved an important personnel dispute for you!” Ganesh declared.

“Pfffft,” said Charles. Because someone had to. “So, which one is the tough guy?”

“Oh, now that is an interesting question….”

Japan, between here and there….

"Sooooo, how can it be a secret mountain laboratory if there's only one fucking mountain in Japan?"

"You're just full of questions, Nathan!" said Charles. Dethklok's manager was sitting in the seat across from Nathan in the sleek private Shinkansen car, leaning over against Ganesh, who was staring out the window.

"So, what did you do with the creepy demon baby?" Nathan asked.

“I dunno. What did you do with our creepy demon baby, Ganesh?"

"I thought you had our creepy demon baby?" Ganesh smiled.

“Damn, not again.”

Nathan was looking displeased, so Charles added, “Boon is with Raziel and Wotan.”

“Uh, OK.”

“You weren’t worried, were you?” Charles asked.

“Me? Of course not!”

Charles reached out a hand, and Ganesh put an electronic pad into it. Charles switched over to sit by Nathan, who leaned over fractionally to view the pad.

“Here he is at 9 am. And here he is at 10 am. And here he is at 11 am. And here he is at 12:15….”

“They missed NOON?” Nathan asked.

“I guess she was cleaning off goo.” Charles switched back to sitting next to Ganesh.

“So we’re getting our awesome metal robot?”

“Yes, Nathan.”

“And, ours will be the MOST AWESOME? This is important!”

“Well, you guys have been bitching to me ever since Soundgarden got theirs. And these are the same guys.”

“Really? But, ours is better?” Nathan asked.

“I talked to Chris Cornell personally.”

“You talked to Chris Cornell?” Ganesh asked suspiciously.

“We’re old friends,” Charles noted.

“Chris Cornell. Shirt on, or shirt off?”

“Well, you know how he is,” Charles grinned.

Ganesh raised a scandalized eyebrow. “Hmpf,” he said. “There may be repercussions for this.”

“Yeah? Will there be spanking?”

“OH MY GOD YOU GUYS DON’T TALK LIKE THAT!” Nathan huffed, rising and stalking off.

“He is still ridiculously easy to irritate,” Ganesh noted.

“Yeah,” said Charles.

“You do it on purpose, don’t you?”

“Would I do that?”

“Yes. Yes you would,” Ganesh assured him. “Might I be a ranger?"

"You wanna be a ranger?"

"I am not entirely certain. Pink isn't exactly my most favored color."

“Raziel already grabbed pink anyway.”

"Might I be an ecru ranger?"

"No, Ganesh. There is no such thing as an ecru ranger."

“Oh, bother. Well, I guess it is not to be my fate. What color ranger shall you be?”

“Me? I’m not gonna be a fucking ranger. I’m gonna be the guy who stays back in the control room.”

“You intend to be Zordon? The fellow who was the brain in the tube?”

"He wasn't a brain in a tube."

"Near abouts!"

"He was a giant head in a tube."

"This is different?"

"It's totally different! Do you have any appreciation at all for the genre?"

"Well, no, not actually. I was always more partial to the western myself."

"Cowboys and Indians?" asked Charles, surprised.

"They weren't the proper kind of Indians, but, yes."

"I have half a mind to go lean on somebody else!"

"Half a mind? In a tube?"

Charles scowled.

Kitsune's Top Secret Mountain Hideaway, which is really located at the foot of Mt. Fuji....

"Welcome, Dethklok musicians!" Kitsune announced. He was surrounded by his Yaoi Teardrop bandmates, who had all changed into color-coordinated motorcycle outfits for the occasion. "We are here today to grant you the items of power we have been working on in our secret mountain hideaway."

"They sure spend a lotta time talking about their secret mountain hideaway," Nathan noted.

"You are no longer merely Dethklok!" the fox god told them.

"There'sch nothing mere about Dethklok, bro," Murderface gumbled.

"As of today, you are Bishonen Kagaku Ninjatai Desu Krokku!" At which he struck a really cool martial arts pose.

"Ooo, cools poses," Toki gushed.

"Uh, dude, what does Bishonen Kagaku Ninjatai Desu Krokku mean, anyway," Nathan asked Charles.

"It means, uh, 'Lovely Science Ninja Team Dethklok.' More or less."



"Uhhhh, isn't that sort of gay dude?"

"Yes, it is actually very gay, Nathan. In fact, from now on, you will have sex only with men."

"WHAT?" Nathan frowned. "Hey. You're fucking with me."

"Yes, Nathan. Yes I am. But you are getting very, very irritating."

Kitsune's bandmates were passing out Desu Krokkuy Action Medallions. "Ams I not getsing one?" Toki asked.

"I had already given you your Action Medallion, Desu Krokku Aoi Usagi," Kitsune scolded.

"I knows, but I ams lefts it on da bureau."

Kitsune sighed and signalled for Toki to be given a new Action Medallion. And then when they had all assembled, and Toki had chewed on his a bit to determine that this new one, too, was not made of chocolate, they all waved their arms and transformed into color coordinated motorcycle outfits. Toki remained blue, Skwisgaar looked quite striking in yellow, Murderface a bit regrettable in black and white stripes, Pickles was inevitably in red, and Nathan was not especially pleased to be clad all in green.

"I dunno, dudes, I don't think green is especially metal," he grumbled.

"Dood!" Pickles protested. "Everybody wants t' be da Green Ranger!"

"Oh why is that?"

"He's da coolest!"


"He lost his powers and got all mopey."

"Wait, I'm a fucking EMO RANGER?"

"And DEN he came back as da White Ranger, wit' more power!"

"Well, why can't I just skip over and be the cool Whilte Ranger instead of fucking with this shit?"

"All of you have associated call signs. Toki, you are Desu Krokku Aoi Usagi. Murderface is Byakko."

"Hey, that'sch not the thing they do where they...."

"Yer t'inkin' bukakke, dood," Pickles whispered.

"Oh." Murdereface may have looked slightly disappointed.

"Skwisgaar is Kiiroi Taka. Pickles will be Aka Tako...."

"Wait, dood, we're Taka and Tako?" Pickles asked.

"Heh. Gay," snickered Nathan.

"And Nathan Explosion is Midori Krokku!"

"Midori?" asked Nathan.

"A rather pleasing liqueur, Nathan!" Ganesh pointed out.

"Uh. what does it taste like?"

"Er. Melon."

Nathan looked distinctly annoyed. "Hey. Wait, that makes me Desu Krokku Krokku?" This set off a round of giggling.

"Charles! I'm fucking KROKKU KROKKU? What the fuck?"

"Nathan! You're gonna have a cool robot! What is the issue here?" Charles asked him.

Nathan sighed, and inclined his head. Somewhat puzzled, Charles followed him as he walked away from the crowd.

"So," said Nathan. "We're gonna fight."

"That's the intention. Did you decide you don't wanna do it?"

"No! I wanna fight! I wanna kick some FUCKING TENTACLE ASS."

"Then what exactly is your fucking problem?"

"What is YOUR fucking problem?" Nathan growled.

"You can't just repeat questions back to me!"

"You've been acitng like a pissy bitch this whole FUCKING TRIP!"

"Well, I am sorry Nathan. Have you ever thought for one fucking second maybe you guys bring out that special quality in me?"

Nathan glowered. "You're gonna go to San Serriffe and get hitched? To Ganesh dude?"

"Yes? Oh." Charles struggled to compose himself. But, for the second time in as many weeks, he found he didn't wish to compose himself. He wanted to punch something. He turned to Nathan. "OK, is that what-?"

"And, then you'll quit?"

Charles paused again, now completely confused. "Uh. What?"

"You'll quit the band." Nathan looked miserable. "It's getting pretty FUCKING OBVIOUS."

"No! I-" The denials bubbled up. Denials and obfuscations. But what finally escaped was the truth. "Nathan. I don't know whether I can do this anymore."

"Skwisgaar was a douche. About the kid."

Charles gulped and nodded. "Skwisgaar was a douche. And I nearly punched him."

"Maybe he needed to be punched."

"You realize, don't you, if I hit him, I could hurt him? Really really badly?"

"Well, yeah, but...." Nathan appeared to consider this. "So, OK. So, I'll punch him!"

"You don't need...." But Charles stopped. It was a terrible, horrible rotten idea. "Actually. Yeah. It might be better if you punched him instead," he found himself saying.


"All right."

"And that's what we'll do when the others act like douches!"

Charles frowned. "So what happens when you act like a douche?"

"You'll yell at me LIKE I'M STUPID. Same as you always do."

"I don't.... I don't think you're stupid, Nathan."

"You don't?"


"Well. Anyway. I'm not gonna say anything about your freaky demon kid! Because he's actually pretty metal."

"For the last time, he's not a demon.... Wait. Wait. You know that, don't you?"

Nathan grinned.

"You're just saying it to piss me off, aren't you?"

"Just being a dick."

"Wow. You really, really are," Charles marveled.


"You wanna get back?"

Nathan grinned and shrugged, so they walked back to where Kitsune appeared to be having a rather grumpy band (well, except for Toki) doing calisthenics.

"Now, the first matter regarding your new super team!" Kitsune was telling those assembled.

"Uh, we get cool robots now?" Nathan asked hopefully.

"Striking awesome poses!" Kitsune answered.

Dethklok attempted this. "Hey, I wanna pose like the HAI KARATE GUY!" Nathan protested.

"I already got dat one, dood!" Pickles grinned.

"That's no fair, you got a HEAD START, and I'm the LEADER!"

"That'sch aschually not a very metal pose," Murderface snorted.

"It's more brutal dan yoo, dood! Yoo look like yer scratchin' yer dick!"

"Schratcing your dick isch very metal."


"Uh, Kitsune," Charles asked the god. "Are my guys really gonna be able to work as a sentai team?"

"They must simply work to discover inner peace and harmony," the fox Spirit explained. "Or, failing that, kicking some fucking ass will do."

Charles sighed deeply and gripped the bridge of his nose.

Ganesh's residence, some days (and nights) later....

Ganesh felt the thrashing. The limbs, the wings.

"Shhh. It's all right my love. It's all right."

Lord Ganesh could probably have been termed a sexual epicure. Over a very long lifetime, he had done many things. He had in fact done just about everything with everyone.

And then he had met Sariel.

The angel was a being completely outside Ganesh's range of experience. In so many ways.

And in Ganesh's humble opinion, Sariel needed someone exactly Ganesh. Someone to slow him down, take him apart. To let him experience the pleasure, instead of bolting it like a starved child.

Ganesh immediately took control, even that very first night together. Perhaps in human terms he would have been regarded as a top, but it was more than that. The coupling had been frenetic. But then they slept together, they showered together, they breakfasted together. He had tried to bring a center to it all.

So very soon afterwards, however, Ganesh had encountered a desperately unhappy and lost Sariel in his True Form, and all his serenity and caution had been quite knocked out the window. He had absolutely no idea how to remain in control in this kind of encounter. The power was like nothing he had ever experienced. Sariel was more like a wild creature than a man.

It was intoxicating. And Ganesh knew this was something he needed to master. Even if it took many a year.

For Ganesh was patient man.

He lay on top of Sariel now, so close, facing him, the fine, soft wings enfolding them both. So many hands on his beloved angel, caressing him, lips to his ear, speaking softly. Trying to calm him, and excite him, all at the same time. Impossible, really. Ganesh attempted to slow his own heart. The anticipation was almost overwhelming, so slowly pushing his legs apart, stopping every minute to soothe, telling Sariel how much he was wanted.

And then at long last he was pushing inside him, so slowly and carefully. He was in tears. There was a gasp, and a cry, and he felt the hot sting on his back as Sariel's fingernails raked up the skin, leaving angry red trails.

It was so beautiful. Ganesh gasped an pulled out, and back in, letting himself feel the glorious burning on his back, the gorgeous friction on his cock, the delightful pressure of skin, the smell of sweat, his lover's moans, the intense, color-riot of Sariel's aura shining with desire and pleasure. Ganesh felt until he couldn't possibly feel anything anymore. He set up a rhythm, oh so slow and sweet, and finally let himself go with a shiver that rocked from his toes all the way back to his pelvis. He laughed, and let tears come. It was all he had left.

Somewhere else, near but also far away, Sariel was uneasy. His pretty god was laughing and crying. He didn't understand. Such a beautiful thing, he was tenderly wiping Sariel off with towel, smiling through tears. The god rolled over to put the towel aside.

Sariel was horrified at the red marks. "Your back!" he cried.

"I'm fine dear. I'm fine. Don't worry."

But Sariel was already off the bed and into Ganesh's medical bag. He had his god sit quietly while he applied the ointment. His beautiful, perfect, back. And then they both lay down.

"Are you sure you're OK?" Sariel asked.

"You know. Oh, Sariel. You're the one. The only one. Ever," the god assured him. And so Sariel was happier, and wrapped his god in wings and magic, and they drifted off to sleep.

Ganesh awoke, some hours later. He was alone now. He stretched. He figured Sariel had wandered off to shovel some food into his greedy angel mouth.

He reached over to feel his back. He frowned.

He rose and looked at a mirror.

Sariel was, not surprisingly, at the breakfast table. Surprisingly, he was on the phone. "Raziel," he said when he saw Ganesh. He sat the phone down. "Evidently our angel brats didn't display any new magical powers as of last night."

"Dear," said Ganesh. "I had some scratches on my back last night. They are completely gone. That is too rapid for any kind of healing ointment, including one of my own. And there appears to be no scarring."

Sariel looked pained. "Oh, Uh. Did I scratch you? Sorry."

"You don't remember?"

"Sometimes. I don't remember. When I'm like this." He pointed back to his wings.

"You don't?" Ganesh asked, putting a hand through Sariel’s silvery hair.

Sariel shrugged.

Ganesh sat down in the chair next to him. "It's too bad. Last night was rather..." He coiled a foot up on the chair and trailed off, smiling mysteriously.

Sariel frowned. He closed his eyes, and appeared to be thinking. His eyes opened. "I think... I remember... We did THAT?" And suddenly his cheeks had colored.

Ganesh sipped some tea. “Uh-huh.”

“Oh. Uh.” Sariel leaned over. “You don’t uh, think we could try again? When I remember better?”

“I think we ought definitely practice. Until we are assured of doing it right.” Ganesh put down his teacup. “These lapses. You don’t suppose they’re related to the abuse?”

Sariel looked stricken. Ganesh was momentarily sorry he had brought it up.

“Jaanu…” Sariel whispered.

Ganesh frowned and made a decision. “Come over here,” he said, gathering Sariel into his lap. The angel cringed briefly at the contact, but then quickly curled up, furling his wings close to his back. Ganesh waited for a moment.

“Do you think I would ever do anything to Boon?” Sariel asked.

Ganesh was momentarily taken aback. He felt a hand come squeeze his heart. Finally, choosing his words carefully, he said, “This is a very important question. So I think we should consider it very carefully. All right?”

Sariel nodded.

“All right. I want you to take your time and think very carefully. Have you ever felt the urge to cause harm to him? At any point? He is very mischievous. And gets into things. I have seen him knock you flat to the floor!”

Sariel actually laughed. “That was sort of funny. Actually.”

“It was funny when he did it to you,” Ganesh chuckled. “But, you can’t think of anything?” He was stroking Sariel’s wings, feeling him relax slightly.

Sariel shook his head, looking at Ganesh.

“I’ve never seen you do anything that would make me suspect you. In fact, last night, you worked yourself into quite a lather after scratching my back during an, er, rather intense sexual encounter.”

“We really gotta do that so I remember better.”

“We will, dear,” Ganesh smiled. Sariel shuddered, and crawled back over to his own seat. “Do you have a sense of what was done to you?”

“From what I saw in his memory, I think it was mostly that Uriah used to wallop me.”

“You believe the sexual abuse came later?”

Sariel nodded.

“In my medical practice, I have seen some horrific things. But I also know that the cycle does not necessarily continue through generations. Just as you seem to have refused to fulfill your destiny and knife my father-in-law. Much as the sick old bastard may have deserved it.”

“Sick old bastard?” Sariel repeated.


“You’re usually, you know, the nice one.”

“Sariel. I would like to reach down the man’s throat and pull him inside out. And then perhaps put him in a goat pen. But then I remind myself he made our child.” Ganesh looked uncharacteristically irritable. He cursed that he had sworn to himself he would no longer smoke at the breakfast table.

“I don’t usually see you like this.”

Ganesh shrugged.

“It’s kind of hot.”

Ganesh’s eyes slid over to Sariel, who gave his wings a flap.

“You know, it’s gonna be another couple hours ‘till Raziel brings our kid back. And, uh, we need to work on recovering my memory.”

Ganesh smiled.


"Jacque.... Jacque.... Jacque.... PAPA! I understand! I want to be initiated, it's just.... Yes, I know it's for Sen Michel. Jacque! It's just.... Will you listen? We have the fucking San Serriffe deal, Boon still needs to be Named, oh and I have an Eldritch abomination that's threatening the world and maybe the universe down in Australia! Yes, Papa, I do have a lot on my plate right now! No, I am not reconsidering a music career! I would actually like to get rid of the crap so I can get back to my fucking music career! OK. Yeah. Love you too. Bye."

Sariel sighed deeply and looked over to Raziel, who, for once, had appeared sitting over in a guest chair, and not perched obnoxiously on his desk.

"What?" she asked.

Sariel felt his coat for the nonexistent packet of Marlboros. Why had he stopped smoking? What an asshole. "Jacque wants me to be initiated as a Santero."


"I guess for some fucked up magical earth god reason, this needs to happen before the San Serriffe thing so Ganesh will gain a priesthood too. Or, some fucking thing."

"Earth gods. They're worse than we are. So, what's the problem?"

"CHARLE!" came Skwisgaar's whine from the doorway.

"Just a minute," Sariel sighed.

The Swede entered the office. He was dressed in his yellow Desu Krokku outfit, and, unlike certain of his bandmates who might better not be named, looked rather fetching.

"Toki ams poksing me withs his mechas rabbitses ears!" Skwisgaar whined.

"So. Uh. Poke him back with your mecha bird beak?" Sariel suggested.

"Ams da mighty hawk!"

"Why dontcha Birddu Bombbu him from above?" Raziel suggested.

"Oh, cans I does dat?" Skwisgaar wondered.

"Uh," said Sariel.

"Yeah, sure, it'll just bounce off his Rabbittu Hoppa," she assured him as he happily ran out of the office. "Um, probably," she added.

Sariel was glaring at her.

"What?" she grinned.

"I do not want to have to find another rhythm guitarist."

"So, uh, how is the training going?"

Sariel put his forehead in his hands. "I don't think I have the vocabulary. We need to call Ganesh. Or buy a thesaurus."


"Or, uh, maybe invent an entirely new word."


"Raziel. They kicked the boys out of Japan! They said we were annoying the kaiju!"

"Really? Godzilla was getting annoyed?"

Sariel held up three fingers. "They knocked down Tokyo Tower in three separate instances."

"Leaving Goji with nothing to do?"

"I'm still getting annoyed messages from his agent."

"Hey, look, I got an idea."

"You? An idea? Raziel. This cannot end well."

"You take Ganesh off to your voodoo initiation thingie, and we'll watch Boon for you. Consider it a getaway! You look like you need time off."

"Yeah? What about Dethklok?"

"That's the genius part! I'll come down here and whip those boys into a fighting force!"

"YOU'RE gonna take on my band?"

"Oh fuck yeah! I'll show those little assholes," Raziel insisted.

Sariel sat back and smiled. "This is the best laugh I've had in weeks. There is no fucking way."

"Fucking way!"

"Absolutely, positively...."

"I'm an awesome general!"

"But this is DETHKLOK!" Sariel scoffed, crossing his arms and glaring at Raziel. She responded coming around and hopping up on his desk, which only intensified the glare. "What have we said about sitting on the desk?" he asked her.

"Sariel, look at me," she said, further annoying him but propping a terribly expensive shoe on the arm of his chair. "Picture yourself, on a tropical beach, with Ganesh. Ganesh, in a swimsuit. All alone. White sand. Tropical beach."

"Just us?" Sariel muttered.

"Just you. Tiki drinks."

"Go on."

"And Ganesh. Rubbing on baby oil," she said, miming the action on her own body. "All over his body. To make his perfect tan even more perfect."

Sariel looked skeptical. He leaned over to Raziel. "Uh. In this scenario, does Ganesh absolutely need to be wearing the swimsuit?"

Raziel grinned.

Ganesh’s residence....

"I am raising a child with an abuse victim." Ganesh looked up. "What was I ever thinking, Uncle?"

“Well, thinking usually ain’t high on the list when a child is conceived. Though it was a bit of a different matter in your case,” Wotan laughed.

“A part angel boy,” Ganesh continued miserably. “When I know full well about my mother’s feelings on the matter.”

Wotan sat back on the couch and looked stern. "Ganesha. I taught ye to hunt! What's the first lesson?"

"Wear a raincoat when you go after bog demons?"

Wotan grew his head back and roared with laughter. "That's right! All right, what's the SECOND lesson?"


"You're tryin' to solve about sixteen different matters, all in a muddle."

Ganesh wiped his eyes, and nodded.

"Now. Give me one problem. We'll think it through together." Wotan grabbed the cut glass decanter on the table between the two men and poured another round.

"My boy."

"Yes. It's important for a man to have a son! It changes ye in ways you'll never expect."

"I would like to make certain he is safe. I don't know how bad things were for Sariel. And I don't think he even knows...."

“Be that as it may, has he ever given you reason to fear for the boy?"

“No. Never. It never even occurred to me until he brought it up….”

“And he hasn’t yet clobbered my idiot son. Speaks to his patience.”

“Do you think we will be all right?”

“Well, as you well know, there’s more than one way to torment a child. It’s good you’re getting hitched. A child needs stability most of all! And it’s good for a man to be married!”

“Yes, Uncle. And to hunt. And to smoke cigars,” Ganesh ticked off on his fingers.

“I’ve heard Jacque is quite an afficianado!”

“I have partaken with him,” Ganesh allowed.

“Now, see? You’re already getting along with your in-laws! We’ve been blessed to have Phanuel working for us.”

"My worry is Sariel's in-laws frankly."

"You told him this?"

"I don't wish to add to his cares."

"I am getting tired of playing both ends of this! You're gonna tell him! That's a goddam order, Nesha."

Ganesh cringed. Wotan was well aware how much he despised his childhood nickname.

Wotan looked thoughtful. "You reckon why the Lady and I had children, son?"

Ganesh looked up, puzzled. "I was under the impression from both of you wanted them."

"That's true." Wotan rose and started to pace. "Nothing I love better in the world. But there was another reason. Sariel and Raziel, you know their origins? And you know they were kept under wraps by Headquarters for a long time?"

"Yes?" Ganesh had no idea where this conversation was going.

"It worked for Headquarters, but it also worked for a number of us. It wasn't so great a secret, you know. I suspect Brahma, for one, had a good idea what was going on, mixed race beings. Some gods can't get their minds around it, that there may not be such a difference between our kind and the angels."

The two men were speaking in the room Ganesh used as a studio. Wotan now stood at the window, framed by the light. He turned to face Ganesh. "Those children," Wotan mused, "Our children. They're a refutation of that. Just by existing. Just by living and breathing."

"Are you saying-?" Ganesh started. He really had no idea what he wanted to ask.

"The danger to your boy doesn't lie from Sariel. He'd die for that child. You just have to look at him to know that. It lies from elsewhere. We can help you lad, My Lady and I, and you've won over the Trimurti. Jacque will be a fine ally too, I think. But you're going to encounter a whole lot of resistance. And sometimes more than that. Where you expected it, like your mom and her crowd. But sometimes where you least expected it. You need to be aware of that."

Ganesh nodded glumly.

"So tell me, what's this you're working on?" the king asked, indicating a cover laid over Ganesh's easel.

"Oh, I'm not sure Sariel would approve my showing this one," Ganesh laughed, removing the tarp.

Wotan stood for a moment before the unfinished nude portrait of a True Formed Sariel. His hand was gripping Ganesh's shoulder. "Son. Can you do one like this for me? The Lady Raziel?"

Ganesh frowned and then brightened. "I would be delighted. But would she sit for me?"

"Why the hell wouldn't she sit for you?"

"Er," said Ganesh, as the Lady herself entered the room along with Sariel.

"Because Lord Vishnu says he's going to need elephants for his OH MY FUCKING GOD WHAT IS THIS?"

Wotan draped an arm around her. "Ganesh says he'll do one for us, darlin'."

"Do one what?" Raziel asked. She appeared scandalized.

"A portrait of ye!"

Raziel mutely waved an arm at the portrait. "Not like that!"

"Why the hell not?"

"With wings out?"

"What's wrong with that? Ye got wings, don't ye?"

"I can't.... I'm a married woman! With children!"

"Who are winged too, if ye haven't noticed."

"Raziel is right," Sariel said.

"Uh, yeah! See! Listen to Sariel!" Raziel said uncertainly.

"The next time you take me to a wing bar, you'd have to explain it to your buddies, the Renaissance angels," Sariel explained.

"I.... Would?"

"And they'd probably say 'Fabuloso' and all that crap," Sariel sniffed.

Raziel looked from Sariel to Wotan to the portrait, obviously torn between embarrassment and fabulousness.

“When can you start, Ganesh?” she asked. “Because, uh, Wotan’s birthday is coming up.”

Wotan grinned. “You wanna get back to the angel brats now, darlin’? I’d like to make sure they haven’t completely destroyed my castle.”

“Oh, they’ll be fine. Nephthys says they’ve been playing submarine warfare! Er, although there might be some minor water damage in the east wing….” Raziel told him as they disappeared.

Ganesh and Sariel exchanged a glance. Ganesh threw the tarp back over his easel. “We need to talk,” he said.

“We do. Jacque wants to move up my initiation.”

Ganesh raised an eyebrow. “And I gather you approve of this?”

“Raziel had an idea. OK, stop doing that look. They’ll take the kid for the weekend….”

“So young Elias may be initiated into the world of submarine warfare?”

“I’m sure he’ll make a fine naval commander. Anyway, Raziel will try to whip my no wing angel brats into shape….”

“Ah. That is an interesting suggestion!”

“You haven’t heard the best part! And then we go for the weekend, just us two! You know! Away from World War II reenactments and death metal musicians!”

“OK,” said Ganesh.

“You mean, OK, you’ll check at work?”

“No. OK. We’ll do it.”

Sariel gawped. And then he hurried off.

“Were are you going in such a hurry, jaanu?” Ganesh asked.

Sariel paused at the door. “I’m going back to Costco. We need to buy a case of baby oil!”

And then he was off.

“Angels,” laughed Ganesh, shaking his head.
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