Saturday, 9 June 2012

In the Midst of Armageddon

 A very dear friend of mine set me a challenge a few weeks ago. He provided the setting of a scene and challenged me to come up with a short story/interpretation of his words. 

This is my interpretation. Thank you, E! #hugs :)


Broken wings like shattered arrows littered the horizon. The bloody battlefield, corpses strewn about told the tale of desolation, of a feud a millennia in the making. Armageddon. This was Revelations


Far off on the edge of the battlefield, she lay among the pile of bodies…

One wing lay twisted in a heap, bones and sinews mangled from the spiked mace of a demon. The damage was absolute and unforgiving. Flight was impossible even if she could move from the other wounds to her body. 

Most were superficial with the exception of the dagger still lodged in her side. It hurt to move, but she was loath to take the weapon out. Her blood loss was minimal at the moment and she knew she would bleed out quickly if she did remove the dagger. It was safer to leave it where it was and hope one of her brethren would happen upon her before a demon did.

As the thought passed through her mind she noticed a shape to her left making his way through the bodies, spearing each angel corpse with his curved sabre as he went.  For the briefest of moments she felt fear and then the warmth and love of the Father surrounded her and she let out a small exhalation of breath.
Her fear evaporated as she watched the demon, pity rising up to see the wretched creature so intent on his task and yet an aura of defeat enveloping him. From his perspective victory was at hand, he was ensuring his enemy was defeated, and still there was no joy to his task. Such was the way of the Underworld. And this was why the angels fought so hard.

He was almost upon her now and through the blood and gore that matted his black leather clothing, the angel perused the instrument of her final breath with compassion. So handsome for such a despicable creature, if she discounted the deep scars on both cheeks. They were old and obviously signified some tribal status as the demons were wont to do in their society. Cropped black hair left a handsomely austere face unfettered, pale green eyes shone with the joy of a zealot.

How sad the creature appeared and her compassion rose higher.

Their gazes locked and the zeal within the demon’s brightened further as he realised he had a live angel to despatch instead of just corpses.

“I am Death.”

The Father had ensured all His warriors could understand the tongues of the Underworld. Even as He sent them out to battle He retained hope that some of the Fallen could be saved.

“I am Life.” Her words whistled out on a pained breath, but the purity of her voice surrounded the demon and a frown marred his face.

“Your Father is losing. Soon we will rule over everything. How does that make you Life?”

Pharina smiled, peace and serenity soothing the ache in her broken body.

“Where there is Hope there is always Life, Child of the Underworld. That is the message we bring to you as this battle rages around us.”

The confusion eased from his face, the bloody sabre raising high in the air.

“”Your message is false, Angel. There is only Death to greet you this day. Hope has abandoned you.”

She maintained her smile, inwardly speaking to the Father, thanking Him for His Love as the instrument of her death loomed over her, intent on his task.

The blow she was expecting never arrived; instead, surprise crossed the demon’s face an instant before the tips of two arrows burst from his chest in a spray of blood. The demon dropped his sabre and sank to the bloody ground on his knees.

“The Father says it is not your time to leave Him, Pharina,” a tall male Angel said, appearing beside her. He had strung his bow back over his shoulder and reached down to help her to her feet.

“No, Andreas, wait,” she urged, moving painfully towards the mortally wounded demon that had sank down to his side. Confusion was in his eyes as well as anger.

“I was so close,” he murmured, blood flexing his lips as he coughed.

“No, Demon, you were never close,” Pharina answered softly, reaching out to gently trace the scars on his cheek causing him to shiver from the warmth her touch engendered. “You chose Death over Life and that is why, in the end, you will always fail.”

The pity and compassion she felt rose up and a tear escaped and dropped onto his face.

The demon shivered further at the compassion. “You weep for me?” There was an incredulous tone in his voice mixed liberally with hesitancy and doubt.

“I weep for what could have been, what you could have been, if you had only chosen Life.”

The light was dimming in the demon’s eyes and as it did, the zeal began to fade to be replaced with fear. All beings wondered what came after death even if they were children of the Father. Pharina could understand the fear and her heart wept for the creature before her.

“What awaits me, Angel?”

Such a sad, lonely question, the demon no longer so sure of himself, afraid of the unknown. 

“That which you take with you, Demon. That which you choose.”

A tortured sigh escaped him as she leaned down and placed a gentle kiss on his forehead to soothe him as her heart bade her. She couldn’t let him cross over alone.

“Until we meet again, Child of the Underworld,” she whispered, the clarity of her love and compassion surrounding the dying male, welcoming him into her heart for this moment of death.

The demon took one more shuddering breath and then groaned in pain. His conviction appeared to leave him as in his final moments he saw the Love of the Father awaiting him. It shone like a beacon, redemption, absolution. All he had to do was reach out and take it.

“I choose Life.” The light died from his eyes and his chest ceased all movement.

“Father is pleased with your work this day, Pharina,” Andreas smiled, love shining from his deep blue eyes as he reached out to gently trace the wounds on her body. As he did, they disappeared in a blaze of heat until she stood there without a mark on her body, her wing completely healed.

Pharina stretched out her lavender wings and sighed with pleasure as they curled out behind her easily, her gaze turning sad as she looked out over the battlefield.

“So many are called home, Andreas. It will be a long time before we are all back together again as we once were.”

Her companion, too, surveyed the carnage but his disquiet was less as he was so much older than the young angel beside him.

“Time has no meaning when we have eternity before us, Pharina. Come, we have more work to be done this day.” With that, he launched himself upwards, flying high into the midst of Armageddon to complete his Father’s mission.

A soft sigh escaped Pharina as she looked down at the Death that had been so close to extinguishing the spark of her life, even if it would have been but a brief moment that she’d ceased to exist. The sigh turned into a beatific smile as she felt her Father’s love surround her and she followed Andreas into the morning air.

There was one more Angel in Heaven today. It was time to go and see if she could add another.