Hello everybody! This is my first time writing in English. I'm French and I don't really speak English fluently, so forgive me if you find some mistakes. This text was an English homework: we had to choose a painting and to create a little story inspired from it. If you're interested, I chose "The Young Martyr", by Paul Delaroche. I really enjoyed writing this essay; it took me a lot of time, that's why I post it. I don't know if my language is appropriate, nor if the style is good, but I am really interested in your opinion. So please be indulgent, and let me know what you think ;D

Nat'

FALLEN ANGEL

Natalea had been gazing at the Heavens and the Earth since the dawn of time. The breath of wind, the soft rustle of trees, the violence in the bowels of the Earth, and the slow rhythm of water. And amid all this magic, there were humans.

Natalea was an angel. She was an incarnation of life itself, a pure soul preserved from the sufferings of mortals. She felt neither hunger nor thirst; she didn't know anything from death. She looked at the humans without understanding them, with a mixture of curiosity and fear. They were guided by everything she was not: extreme, impassioned, slaves of their powerful and uncontrollable feelings.

She felt both horrified and fascinated by these elusive beings, capable of committing the best and the worst. Her mind was unable to apprehend their brief and fragile existence. But she looked at them tirelessly.

And one day something happened that should never have happened. Natalea was watching the beams of the Sun playing with the gleaming surface of a lake, in the heights of the Highlands. A young man was contemplating the water, sitting on a rock, not far from a herd of sheep. He was not exceptional: he was tall and very thin, with light hair and crystal clear eyes, like the surface of the lake. But to her eyes, he was the most beautiful thing she had ever seen.

Then Natalea felt something waking up into herself. Something strong and unknown. Something terrifying. She couldn't remove her glance from this human sitting along the water. He seemed so alone, lost in this wild nature. So sad also. But strong.

As a tidal wave submerges a dam, Natalea felt her conscience awaken to mortals' feelings, these intense feelings which had frightened and intrigued her so much. Nothing had importance anymore; the world was vanishing around her. Without knowing why, her whole existence was now revolving around this human who couldn't even see her. Natalea discovered Love.

And suddenly, she ached. Suffering to be separated from him, suffering to never reach him. She wanted to join him at any price. She felt desperate, torn. For the first time, she became aware of her eternal solitude. Natalea discovered suffering.

And then, passion took her away. She raised the hand; she leaned toward the Earth and left the angels' world. Immediately, the sky filled with clouds, the bloody horizon darkened, the thunder rumbled against cliffs. The frontier between these two worlds had been crossed, the taboo was broken. Natalea the angel had braved the biggest of prohibitions.

And for this crime, she was going to be punished. By leaving the angels' world, she had given up her immortality. She felt falling, a fallen angel rejected by Heaven. The young mortal saw her, and for a few seconds, their eyes met. Then she crashed into the lake, in its clear waters like her lover's glance. Natalea had joined the mortals' world, and Death had immediately taken her.

Alone along the shore, the young man approached the water. He saw this perfect woman in the ice-cold wave, her golden hair reflecting the brightness of the Sun, her face turned toward the sky. And he thought that he had never seen a more heart-rending and beautiful scene.

Natalea the angel had known Love, Suffering and Death. All these things for which humans live, and die.