[ Nearly everything about Peter Nureyev is sharp.The jut of his collarbones. The slender points of his heels. The edge of his perfectly-kept nails. His eyes. His teeth, his smile. His mind. Is it any wonder, then, that Juno fully expects the pile of black feathers - recently tugged from old sheath and broken root - to cut him when he lays his hands upon them? It's a small pile, the result of a monthly preening, and he shoves his hands into them. To his knuckles, to his wrists. Burying his fingers among tattered feather and cracked shaft, squeezing handfuls of them so tight to his palms that it's almost as though he wishes that they would cut his skin to shreds.But, they don't. They're just feathers, after all. Sharp angles, slender - just like Nureyev.Juno can hear him in the other room, discussing something on one of the many comms that he's found on his person. One for any active identity, at any given time. He's doing business as "Aria", or something of that nature. Something sleek, svelte, talking to a contact at Juno's request in tones that are doing something to him, even from a distance. He picks up a feather, and rubs his thumb over it, the wrong way 'round - causing it to bunch and bristle and for the barbs to break. The whole thing is lopsided, worthy of being discarded. Juno can't bring himself to let it go, and instead curls one of his own wings around his shoulder.Compared to Nureyev, he's drab. Dark brown and dusty red, broad, coarse feathers and a blunt tail. Nothing like the iridescence of the single feather he holds in between his fingers, turning it against the light so that it catches, practically glows, even as battered as it is. He's never treated his wings that well, to be fair. Sure, there's public bathhaus's - filled with scented dust and holistic oils, but there's a certain level of self-awareness that Juno possesses that he just can't shake. He used to go, once. A long time ago, it feels. He'd felt the weight of soft metals and gold charms woven through his wings, and he'd thought --He'd thought a lot of stupid things.Even still, he's thinking stupid things. Holding Nureyev's sleek, long pinion up to his own feathers. Lifting a handful of them to tuck it under the layer, letting pressure hold it in place. He adds another, and then another, until they sit in a row and he turns his wing to the light. Nureyev's feathers, dead and broken as they are, gleam. Pretty, bold, like a shimmering gem. It's just like him. Juno is a dark thing, blunt and broad - and oh, he thinks, briefly - of what he'd look like if Nureyev's wings were his, instead.( a fast, clever bird; glittering in the sun, as juno cards his fingers through peter's wings and plucks feathers from them. it's been years and years, since he's had anyone to do this for. a small, tender intimacy that he'd resolved never to give another, and here he was, pressing his fingers down to the root of peter's 'span, pressing his face between his shoulderblades and inhaling. soft, downy feathers at the nape of his neck tickling the insides of his nose. the elusive scent of exotic worlds and a distinct cleanliness that he'd come to associate with peter. he's kept feathers before, stuffed them under his pillow and breathed them in, in the man's absence.peter's here now, though. )He's in the other room, and Juno can hear the conversation come to an end. Abruptly, he combs his fingers through his own feathers, stripping the dark flight-pinions from where he'd slipped them, sending them to the floor. One is caught between his fingers, and he is caught, as the door slides open with a metallic whir, silent. Slightly ashamed, the feathers on the back of his neck and back raised in alarm. He's been Caught, and every inch of him is broadcasting that. ]How, [ he begins, as he shakes feathers free ] How'd it go?
[ The curve he's put in his wing trembles, not fear- or shame-stricken, but from the effort that had been put into keeping it in place. He flicks it back, flexing tendon and splaying his flight feathers in a slow stretch before folding it along his spine. The soft feathers at the nape of his neck, the heavy russet-and-cream of his tail - these things are still prickled, sticking up defensively, with his empty ire. He's always been the type to televise his aggression, his daring. Right now, he's daring Nureyev to open his beautiful, sly mouth and comment on it."It", being the dark, gleaming feather that the man has just plucked from between his fingers.The pile of discarded feathers sits, haphazard and disturbed, on the table beside him. It's obvious that Juno has been fussing with them, because the weight has been redistributed; the whole pile has sloughed off to one side, threatening to tip more feathers onto the floor. Nureyev, before him, is tidy and freshly-preened and everything that Juno actually wants to sink his fingers into, right in this moment. Instead, he flicks a finger over one of the dead feathers on the table, and sends it scattering through the pile of remnants and discards. When he speaks, his voice cracks all but briefly, when Nureyev ghosts his face with the edge of the feather he's taken back as his own. ]Y-- [ ahem ] First, you wanna' speed things up, then you wanna' slow things down.[ rush. waiting. ]You sure know how to jerk a lady around, don't you?[ "Aria". It's another lie, another false thing that Nureyev wears so easily. Silken and honey, like some high-end, expensive piece. Juno feels his throat tighten at the thought - Nureyev, satin black and blue shimmer, a songbird on someone else's arm. The dappled red-and-cream feathers along the back of his neck, the line of his spine and shoulders - they all rise with agitation, and fall soon after with a resigned fluff. This is Nureyev's line of work, and he'd been the one to ask him to pull these strings. Right in the middle of all the work he'd been doing on Nureyev's plumage, idle fingers plucking dead feathers from him. Preening him. Slowly and intimately, before he'd had the idea for Nureyev to call on the schmuck with the ledger and work his magic.He jabs a thumb to the couch. There's still the tail feathers he needs to go through - longer, stronger, twice as sensitive. This is a thing he hasn't done for anybody, not since -- not since a long time ago. ]-- what's "Aria" like, then?[ It's sudden. He itches, and twitches his wing( they need caring as well, he'll have to rake his fingers through them soon, later later he'll ) - far enough out to snag the magpie-bright feather from between his own and toss it back onto the table. ]