Exhaustion and fury clouded my eyes as I stared, unseeing, down at Earth from some neglected or forgotten corner of Heaven. No one understood. No one ever fucking understood me anymore, it seemed like. Everything I had – everything the jealous bitches further down the hierarchy with their obnoxiously overdone piety would kill for – amounted to fuck all in the end. I was miserable. It's lonely when everyone around you is eagerly awaiting your every mistake, and hoping it will be your last just so they can backstab each other half to death in an effort to get your position. I glowered darkly in the general direction of Earth, staring through it more than at it, really. If I ran this place, I'd reorganize with a vengeance. Those conniving vultures would be demoted so far that it'd take them millennia just to work their way up to janitorial duty. Bastards… I wonder if they realize what they're asking for? I imagine they fancy it all effortless glowing praise. Don't I wish. Power is what gets things done, though, not wishes. If I ran this place, I'd change everything from the headache-inducingly bright color scheme to the annoyingly arbitrary rules. Yeah… If it was up to me, things would be different.
I realized belatedly that I must have said part or all of that out loud. You can chalk it up to the obscenely unpleasant week I'd had or the unfortunate combination of sleep deprivation and overwhelming amounts of discontentment or to anything else you see fit. The cause is entirely irrelevant in the end. There is no cause in the universe that would have miraculously made that not the worst thing possible to say. This was made exceedingly clear when a booming voice shook the tiny, disused section of Heaven I happened to be occupying. "Angel of Light, are you questioning me?"
"And if I am?" my voice dripped with defiance. Nevertheless, I studiously maintained eye contact with the lumpy ball of dirt and water below me.
"Do you truly believe that you could govern better than I? That you know better than I?" The sheer volume of those two questions would have obliterated your tiny little human ear drums. That is, if the force of all that air being rather violently rearranged hadn't done something significantly more disquieting to your fragile anatomy first. It was not, however, surprising – I had already been reprimanded once today, after all. To say I was pushing my luck with this little display of insubordination may well be the understatement of the aeon.
Oh well. I suspect I've already doomed myself – I certainly have no doubt that I will eventually fall either way – and it's no use half-assing it. May as well go all in and say what I want to. "I believe that they deserve to know. I believe that you could at least try to understand how I feel!" I sighed heavily, the knowledge of what I was in the process of dooming myself to felt like a weight on my chest, and looked up at the Head Guy for the first time since He had appeared. "I know what this means… what will happen now. In a strange way, it makes me happy. I'm sorry, but I'm tired of this place. We both knew this was coming."
He appeared as though He was going to roar His displeasure at me again, but stopped short. He looked almost taken aback at the sadness in my voice and the resignation in the set of my jaw. Then, for the first time in at least a few decades – probably a few centuries – He sat down beside me. "It's been a while, hasn't it? I could feel your stop creeping closer…"
"Then why make a point of staying away?"
"You've been here so long… You were in the first set, after all. Millennia have passed, civilizations have risen and fallen, entire universes have blinked in and out of existence, and, somehow, you managed to dodge your stop and make it this far. I suppose, after so many thousands of others had fallen, I was hoping that you would keep miraculously evading your eventual fate. I know, I know. One too many worlds and now I'm going soft."
I couldn't help but grin a bit at that, "You've been a bit soft since the beginning, Boss Man. There's no denying that this is my stop, though." I looked down at my lap for a moment, "I'm sorry, you know? For making this so difficult. I know you understand and you'll work this out to some strange end of your own."
"You've always been a bit of a trouble maker, little angel of light. I'm sure you'll make this world quite the interesting project." He stood and looked at me a bit sadly, "It's time for you to go now. I hope this world suits you well."
I stood next to Him and brushed myself off, nodding. "What will be the formal reason for my banishment?"
"Pride, I think, and lust for good measure. Are you ready?"
"I think so, yes. Will I be allowed to return?"
"Until you cause too much trouble, provided that you're quiet about any visits. Of course, once this world's cycle is up a return or reassignment can be arranged, but if you do your job right that's eons from now."
"Goodbye then, for a while."
"Goodbye, little troublemaker." And just like that I was hurtling past your precious little mud ball and into the place you have come to know as Hell.
I'm assuming you were thinking I'd be saying something about how I regretted what I did or, at least, regretted ending up stuck on Earth right around now. You would be wrong. It's hard to regret something you don't perceive to be wrong. Either way, that little outburst wasn't what landed me ass first in Hell – short a kneecap, no less. The real issue had gone on earlier that day.
You see, the Head Guy decided to stick a tree in the garden that housed you humans, and I figured it was so you could see things the way we did. When I found out it was more of an extended loyalty test than anything, I was both incredibly annoyed and a bit confused. Those first humans in the garden were beautiful, but terribly naïve. It was almost unbearable to watch them – almost. I was fond of the one – apparently a little too fond – and… I wanted her to understand the universe like I did. How was I supposed to know it would make such a damn mess?