Author: MirandaWrites PM
"The first time he appeared to her, the entire house was filled with the scent of sandalwood. For an entire week. And not just a faint trace either, but as if sticks of it had been kept burning in every room for a year." Read & review, please. Rated K now but may be upped to a T in later chapters.Rated: Fiction K+ - English - Family/Supernatural - Chapters: 3 - Words: 4,076 - Reviews: 3 - Follows: 1 - Published: 08-04-12 - id: 3047788
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Chapter One: In the Beginning...
The first time he appeared to her, the entire house was filled with the scent of sandalwood. For an entire week. And not just a faint trace either, but as if sticks of it had been kept burning in every room for a year. It clung to clothing, furniture, the dog—nothing was safe. The Dawsens were very cold that week as Mrs. Dawsen kept all of the windows open and ran all of the fans, despite the fact that it was the middle of February in New England. She was determined to rid her home of the nauseating smell. It was particularly strong in one of her daughters' rooms.
"But Mommy," seven year old Catriona Dawsen whined to her mother, as she watched her struggle to fix a rusty old box fan, "it was the Light. I think it was an angel. It just showed up in my room. I didn't tell it to come."
"I don't care if it was Santa Claus telling you that you wouldn't get any presents if you didn't do what he said," Mrs. Dawsen replied from between clenched teeth—the fan's grate was refusing to come off. "Don't listen to him and don't do it again."
Catriona shook her head, frustrated.
The second time he appeared to her, he spoke. He came to her when she was outside playing in the yard, so another incense incident was avoided. However, his voice made all the whistles, booms, and pops of a Fourth of July firework celebration.
Although the closest neighbor was three miles away, they came rushing to the Dawsen's to see what all of the commotion was about. It took fifteen minutes for Mr. Dawsen to talk Mr. Morse into putting down his shotgun. It took another hour to convince him and his wife that all was well and they could return home. All the while, the Morse's baby was wailing, Linus, their basset hound, was howling, and Catriona was ordering the maple tree in the front yard to "shut up, you stupid angel!"
The third time he came to her, no one else knew. She was down by the brook that ran through the Dawsen's backyard, busy trying to build a fort out of sticks for her new pet frog, Bob. Bob did not seem to be aware that he belonged to Catriona though, and he kept hopping away from her. She chased after him, fiercely determined that she would get him to live in the comfortable fort she'd build him, and eat all of the bugs she'd bring him. Bob hopped across the brook with other ideas in mind.
Catriona jumped after him, her left foot landing between two rocks in the water. Eyes still on Bob, she slipped and spun. Her ankle let out a crunching noise and her mouth released a cry of pain. She laid in the cold water, staring up at the cloudless blue sky, and pulled her foot out from between the rocks. A cold, wet sensation—different than the feeling of the water around her—spread through her ankle. Quickly, she sat up, water falling away from her bright red hair and dirty overalls. There was no pain in her ankle, no bruising, no breaks. Without so much as a wince, she crawled onto the grassy embankment and ran in the direction she'd seen Bob hop off in.
However, instead of finding Bob waiting for her in the tall grass, she found a golden haired man. He had blue eyes, shaped like a cat's and so big they made him look like a cartoon character. Even with those cartoon cat eyes he was still pretty; he reminded Catriona of a giant Barbie doll without the plastic smile. In fact, he did not have any expression on his face whatsoever. He simply stared at Catriona with those giant eyes.
"Hello, Catriona," he said. "Do you remember me?"
Catriona hesitated before nodding. "You look different."
"Yes, I've focused my energy into a form. It is comforting to you?"
"You look like a real angel now," Catriona smiled approvingly. Her expression quickly became stern. "You made Mommy nauseous."
His irises clouded over with a royal blue color. "I am sorry for that."
"And you made Baby Morse cry."
"For that I also apologize. I have never revealed myself to a human before. I have learned. I need to speak with you."
Catriona abruptly dropped to the ground in a cross-legged position. "You are."
The angel's irises flashed to a sky blue. "You know that you are special, Catriona."
"I'm different." She nodded nonchalantly. "That's a good thing."
"What do you know of God, Catriona?"
"My grandma says he made the world."
The angel did not respond. She interpreted the silence as encouragement to continue.
"She says that he's a king. The King of Heaven. It's a place that some people go to...at the end."
"At the end?"
Catriona shrugged. "That's what she calls it when someone dies." She leaned in to whisper, "She doesn't think I know that things die." She rolled her eyes. "Grandmas."
The angel continued to stare. "And what do you know of death?"
"Well, Grandma says that there are two things that can happen at the end. You can either go to heaven or to hell. Good people go to Heaven, bad people go to Hell. It's not that complicated."
The angels irises sharply became steel blue. "We disagree on that then." His irises faded to a turquoise. "What do you know of Hell? Of Satan?"
Catriona sighed and rested her cheek in her hand. "Satan is the King of Hell. Hell is a big hole with fire in it."
"You are not afraid of it?"
Catriona narrowed her eyes. "Why should I? I'm not going to it."
"No?" His irises returned to sky blue.
"No. I'm a good person."
"Yes, you are."
"So I don't have to worry about going to Hell."
"No, you do not."
Both fell into a thoughtful silence. Cicadas buzzed around them, the brook made light trickling noises, and Bob croaked from his place on a wet rock. Catriona found a Monarch butterfly to watch. It took its time flitting from patch of grass to patch of grass, moving closer to her. Catriona sat very still, hoping that it would land on her. The angel continued to watch her.
"Satan was an angel," she said casually. "Did you know him?"
"Yes," he replied simply.
"Did you like him? Or was he weird?"
"Everyone loves Lucifer."
Catriona furrowed her brow and looked up at the angel. "But he's evil."
His irises shifted to a brighter sky blue. "Do you still believe that it is not complicated?"
Catriona stuck her tongue out at him. She jumped to her feet so she was looking down on the angel. "What do you want, anyway?"
"I have come to help you with your ability, Catriona." His irises melted into a soft baby blue.
She crossed her arms. "What?"
"Your ability to heal."
"I don't need your help."
The angel cocked his head to the side. "Are you certain?"
"There are things you have yet to learn about it. Many things."
She narrowed her eyes. "Like what?"
"The haze of white light. It surrounds elbows, feet, heads, tails, wings. You do not know what it means."
Catriona appeared surprised but doubtful.
"Do not be afraid, Catriona. I merely wish to teach you. We may stop at any time, should you so will it." He held out his hand to her. Catriona took a step back. She held the angel's gaze, playing absently with one of the buttons on her overalls.
"Riona! Lunch!" Mr. Dawsen's shout rang out faintly behind them.
In a flash of movement, Catriona slapped her palm against the angel's in a 'low-five', and then quickly ran through the brook, up the bank, and toward her house. The angel sat there for a moment, his eyes bright as ever.
"Then so be it," he murmured.