Chapter 2

Filotea walked briskly through one of the twelve enormous pearl gates of Heaven. As she did every time she went through the gates, she stole a quick glance at the twelve foundations that made up the golden city. Each foundation was engraved with a name of one of the twelve disciples of Christ and each foundation was decorated with brilliant precious stones, most known to man, but a few were known only to the beings of Heaven.

The city of gold with its pure golden streets shone with a brilliance that seemed to surpass the sun, yet there was no sun here, no was there any moon, for the glory of God was sufficient light for all. The beauty of it was like jasper, clear as crystal.

Once through the 200 foot thick golden walls, Filotea began searching for Hasia, her friend and mentor.

"Shalom, my friend. I have been waiting for you."

Accustomed to Hasia popping up when she least expected it, Filotea turned and smiled at her friend. "Shalom, Hasia. It is good to see you."

Hasia smiled warmly and gestured to a pair of chairs tucked off to the side in the hallway in which they stood. Removing her helmet and tucking it under her arm, Filotea moved to sit in one of the chairs. Once seated, Hasia regarded Filotea with grave blue eyes the color of ocean depths.

"You were gone longer than expected, Filotea. I pray you did not run into any trouble."

Hasia was one of God's Principalities. Angels of the second sphere of the angel hierarchy, they were tasked with presiding over bands of angels and passing on duties given to them by God's Dominions. From time to time, they bestowed blessings upon the material world. As an angel of the third sphere, Filotea answered to the Principalities.

Memories of the demon in the Irish alleyway blinked into Filotea's mind along with the sensation of being pinned to the ground. An unfamiliar feeling wiggled its way into her gut, a feeling Filotea normally associated with her human form.


"The demon was far more powerful than I anticipated," Filotea answered smoothly, keeping her soft features still and resigned as she struggled to squash the uncomfortable human emotion. "In the end though, he was no match for God's glory."

Hasia nodded solemnly, her golden locks moving like water over her broad shoulders. "Indeed. Did anything else happen while you were in the human realm?" The look she gave Filotea made her insides squirm.

Biting her lip, Filotea turned away for a moment, letting her curling brown hair momentarily hide her face. The silver feathers braided into her hair briefly caught the light, flashing silver beams upon the walls. With a deep sigh, she turned back to her friend.

"The man who was possessed, there was something about him, something . . .different." She stopped, unsure of how to continue.

"Yes?" Hasia prompted lightly.

Edgy, Filotea got up and began to pace. "It is difficult to explain, as I have never had this happen before. I had to fight the demon in my true form. Since he had me pinned, I saw no other option. The only other human nearby was the man the demon possessed, and I knew there was no way he would see me, but . . ." she stopped, her green eyes resting on her friend.

Hasia remained calm, her pale hands folded neatly in her lap. "You do not suppose he saw you, do you?"

Filotea's dark brows narrowed and she huffed. "Of course not. That would be impossible without him going blind."


"But, Hasia . . .," Filotea whispered, sitting down again and gripping her friend's hand, "I swear he was weeping when I left."

Her friend's golden eyebrows shot up into her hairline. "Weeping? From pain, or. . ."

Filotea shook her head so hard the feathers in her hair made a tinkling sound as they knocked together. "No, this was different. It was as though he had seen something so amazing, so wonderful, it overwhelmed him to the point of tears."

The Principality went quiet, gently withdrawing her hand as she stared hard at her friend. "No man has ever been able to see us without God allowing it. In fact, no one has seen one of our kind since we revealed a glimpse of Heaven to the apostle John."

"I know," Filotea said. With her devout love of history, she knew all about the stories of angels and their rare interactions with man. "If I did not know better, I would say he surely saw me."

Hasia rose and turned to face her friend. "We will have to look into this matter. Once I learn something, I will come find you."

Troubled, Filotea could only nod as her friend gracefully glided away down the long hallway. Leaning back in the chair, she rubbed her temples with her fingers. She had felt so odd since returning to Heaven, as though something tugged at her heart. Not knowing what it was, she hadn't bothered to bring it up with Hasia. Her friend would probably warn her about spending too much time among humans.