The Archangel

March 11, 2012
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“And there was war in heaven:
Michael and his angels fought against the Dragon;
and the Dragon fought and his angels.”

The Great Host was no more, the struggle over Men and the Earth had decided that, and the Shining One enforced it. He stole away one third of the Great Host to create his own Lesser Host with which he had ruthlessly attacked those that would not join him. The greater part of those that would not join made their stand on the Great Plain before the Gates.

The tide of the Lesser Host had to be stopped.

“... A woman clothed with the sun,
and the moon under her feet,
and upon her head a crown of twelve stars:

And She being with child cried,
travailing in birth,
and pained to be delivered.”

I stood upon the Hill above the Plains, beside the Gate. My companion and brother Gabriel kept watch for the Adversary. He could not bear to watch the Plains as I did, he could not bear to see our brothers fight as they were.

But their sacrifice was not in vain, the object of our salvation leaned against the Gates, waiting for them to be opened. She held her rounded middle gingerly, even as she cried out in pain.

“Michael!” She cried. “Michael help me!”

I left my vigil and went to her side, trusting Gabriel to take my place.

“How can I serve you, my lady?” I asked as I knelt beside her.

“The child!” She cried. “The child, Michael, he comes. He comes and we will not be safe in time!”

I nodded, knowing what I must do. I gingerly placed a hand on her belly and, summoning all the authority I could, I said:

“Be still child, now is not the time.”

Immediately her pain subsided and all was at peace until I heard Gabriel draw his sword.

“Michael,” he said. “He comes.”

Somehow I knew he wasn’t talking about the child.

“And I looked and beheld a pale horse:
and his name that sat on him was Death,
and Hell followed with him.”

They stood together before us, their robes stained dark, one scarlet as blood, the other black as night. They no longer radiated light and peace, but instead seemed to mar the sky with their hate. Even their weapons had lost their luster. The one in black held a scythe on a black shaft, the other held a sword, but it no longer had the same holy blue flame as mine or Gabriel’s. Instead, it burned with an unholy orange glow.

Gabriel ran at the one in scarlet, prepared to strike him down, but the other swung his great scythe and intercepted the blow. Gabriel, not to be deterred, lashed out at the one in black, and the pair fought, slowly moving away, leaving only the other, myself, and the Lady.

The other drew his sword and pointed it to me.

“Stand aside Michael,” he said. “I will have that child.”

I drew my sword and matched his pose.

“You will have nothing Lucifer,” I replied. “Not through me.”

He laughed. “So be it.”

He swung then, knocking my sword wide, and dived. I side stepped, barely avoiding a sword in the ribs. I struck back, aiming the flat of my blade at his waist and when he went to block I changed direction, sending the blade hurtling toward his neck. He ducked just in time to avoid decapitation.

Sparks flew as I blocked twin blows at my stomach and throat and I felt the wind as his sword passed just a hair’s breadth from my nose, but I drew first and last blood.

He jabbed again, at my throat, and I deflected, angling my sword to use his own momentum, and I swung upward as his sword flew wide. My sword bit deep into his shoulder, leaving a long, jagged line of golden ichor. He staggered back, clutching his wound. I lashed out again, rapping his knuckles with the flat of my blade. He dropped his blade.

“And the Great Dragon was cast out,
that old serpent called the Devil, and Satan,
which deceiveth the whole world:
he was cast out into the Earth
and his angels were cast out with him.”

I stood above him, the great deceiver, the cause of the loss of a third of the Great Host, and I lifted my sword to his throat.

“Lucifer,” I said. “I rebuke thee. Yea, I cast thee out. No longer are you worthy to walk amongst your brethren. I cast you to the bowels of the Earth, even to that great pit that is Hell. And I curse you, to be forever tormented, to never rest, until the end of days.”

As I spoke, the battle on the plains ground down until not a soul lifted his hand against his brother. A hole opened then. A portal in the ground beside me. Through it St. Elmo’s fire was plainly visible for all to see.

“I cast thee into the pit of fire,” I continued. “And all those who serve you as well. None of you are worthy any to cross the Veil and so shall be forever tormented by your own foolishness. Now begone.”

The Shining One glared at me, still clutching his shoulder. He stood, slowly, burning with hatred and despair.

“I go,” he said. “But I will return, and I will be avenged. This shall not be forgotten Michael, my brother.”

He stepped into the portal, and all those that served him as well, according to my word. No one said anything until the portal had closed. When it did, I fell to my knees...

“And Michael and his angels wept.”

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