Killing Angels Prologue

Something went wrong.

The old man called me pretty.  He said I was too beautiful to be a little boy.

It wasn't supposed to be this way.

I grew up in the destruction; I grew up in the war.  ArchAngels in their gray uniforms prancing around our city, sweeping through the buildings to round up the last of our corpses.

He was supposed to be ours to control.

But even in the middle of our depravity, even as I sold my innocence for a drop of real water or an ounce of food, even then there was the purity.  The church.  It stood in the middle of a blackened city.

We did everything right.

I could escape into that church, seek refuge amidst the broken pews and forgotten believers.  There were chunks of marble angels.  Smashed into a thousand pieces and turned to dust.

But he escaped us.

And when I returned after them, after the Angels, I saw a reflection of myself in that destruction…

Something went wrong.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

1

Catavars:

                The floor was a cold slab of concrete poured into the ground three months ago.  She had been there when they did it, had been one to spend days and days evening out the dirt and staking the dimensions.  There were bodies in the concrete, under her hot cheek that was pressed hard against the cool concrete.  Idiot people hat had fallen down and been covered by the gray sludge, and none of them were brave or stupid enough to help the fallen.  Worse, maybe, most of the fallen hadn't wanted to be helped.  Life was hell, here, and death was better than hell.  Like her burning skin and her aching eyes.  The red hue of her vision brought on by the drug that was coursing through her veins, the drugs they had put in her.

                They.  The gray-coated ArchAngels that were a mockery of what history had said they should be.  Or maybe they were what they should have been, she didn't know.  Couldn't remember.  But she knew once.  Had been a teacher once.  Taught children the truth of the world.  That this hell they lived in where the sky was thick and dank and the sunlight could burn you into the sidewalk if it touched your skin that this hell was not the world they should have lived in.  They should have lived in a world of green grass and blue skies and clear water that stretched like oceans across the planet.  But nobody alive today could remember the color of the grass, only the blond color of the sand that covered everything.  The world was dead because they had killed it.  That much she knew.  They, the Angels, the scientists that abandoned the world because the world had told them they could not rape nature. 

                War destroyed them.  War made of weapons created by the Angels, given to the arrogant and the idiot by scientists that claimed to love the purity of nature more than they loved the depravity of war.  But in the end, the Angels were liars too, and the world was blond now.  Blond and covered with thick water that was poisonous to drink and dangerous to swim in.  Rain that was acidic and burned your skin and then this.

                ArchAngels who kidnapped people like her from their homes and hid them in buildings made of sheet metal.  Strapped them into old dentists chairs and pumped their bodies full of neatly labeled drugs that would one day be used to destroy the enemies of the Angels.  That burned them when they were no longer useful, when their veins shriveled up and they could stand the pain of the experiment no more. 

                This was a world where you stared into one another's eyes and saw nothing but the flash of red that always came before the world that didn't exist.  She knew they were hallucinations.  Fire and blood that rained down on things around her, those things weren't real.  She had learned to accept that.  Always there was that flash of red before her mind started to hear the screaming of loons.  The desperate child-cries of the peacocks she had never seen.  Read about them in a book somewhere, sometime, but she couldn't remember them now.

                Then there were the yellow eyes of Sincos.  Bright yellow where the eyes should have been white and dark, dark eyes.  A rumbling voice and the knowledge of every single fable of their day.  The stories of the Angel's depravity as they reached their hands out from that beautiful city Seraphim and drew in all those they felt were worthy.  The Angels had real food and real water and lived in buildings that were not carved out of the mountains and the ground.  Buildings that withstood the pounding acid rain. 

                She didn't believe in that shit anymore than she believed the nightmare-vision now, as she watched a dead body rise off the floor.  Off the floor she had helped lay, where dead were in the concrete under her cheek.  The body had been tossed in hours ago, bleeding and limp and had not moved or spoke since.  Sincos had taken its pulse, looked at the gaping hole in the body's shoulder and said that it was either dead or well on its way.

                But now it was standing up.  Standing up like there was no pain in its abused body, shrugged away the shirt it wore and showed her his—yes it was a male body—back.  The vivid bright tattoo of a silver sword stabbed into a pile of bloody feathers.  And little pieces of down floated down his back, some pink, some white.  The sword was dripping blood all down the blade and it was beautiful.  It was a beautiful thing to see.

                Death to Angels.

                But the sick thing the specter did, was push its dead fingers through the hole in its dead shoulder and make a clucking noise.  A dark little sound of annoyance or amusement, and then it turned, grabbed a different shirt off the floor, uncaring that the shirt had once belonged to a different dead body.  It yanked it on, gray shirt that was long-sleeved and much too big.  Stood there barefoot and looked around.  Looked up, and she rolled onto her side to figure out what the dead body was searching for.

                Didn't see anything the braces for the ceiling, the single wooden stand that held that ceiling up, and the dead body made another dark noise, braced its feet on the cold ground and then ran.  Shoved at the pillar, backed up and charged the pillar again, with the injured shoulder, and blood spurted out, into the air like an arch and it was almost beautiful too. 

                Poor dead body.

                But it prevailed, the pillar fell, and the roof started to cave in, she heard the grate of metal and the shriek of panic as it caved in, the guards cursing and the rattle of keys as she realized at last that this wasn't a vision.  She threw her hands over her face and rolled to the side to keep from being crushed as the dead—no, he was alive—body crawled up the rubble, bare feet smacking the scrap metal roof.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~***

Anyone who had read this:  Sorry it disappeared; I am putting it back up new and improved!