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Friday, April 18, 2014

Excerpt of "If Death Should Love Me" by C. Desert Rose

Hello All.

All Authors is please to present you all with an excerpt of of work from one of their own. Please enjoy a piece of "If Death Should Love Me" by C. Desert Rose.

Rome, Italy
1573

Inability to understand why he was so jealous of me perplexed me. It had been that way since he, himself told me that I had been chosen to be The Collector. It seems that he'd wanted this miserable position for himself. Once, Gabriel told me that it was much easier to care for the dead than it was to care for the living. The living desired too much, wanted undeserved things, fussed about everything. He no longer wanted to guard the living: they were too needy. He wanted to collect the dead. That was easier. Or so he thought.

The Higher Sources chose me in his stead.

Our grand debate? That he wanted my rank and I did not, and even still nothing could change. Such was our destinies. Be that as it may, he blamed me for a decision that was out of my control.

“Gabriel, I never asked for this. This was never my wish.” A weary tone filled my voice. I was exacerbated.

“Yet The Higher Sources found you apt for the calling? Why not I? Am I too holy? Too perfect?” The evil fury of jealousy in his voice made his lip twitch with repulsion.

“I do not know why Gabriel. I still can not understand what persuaded them to call upon me for this. But, if it's war you want, it will be war that you'll get! I won't back down!” I said in a stern voice, making him absolutely certain that I was not going to give up.

“Well my dearest Azriel, here is a great idea. Why not simply kill all the living? It seems like a simple enough solution to our problem. Do you not think?” His conniving tone made my insides turn. “If we kill the living, then all that will be left, is the dead. Problem solved! Then everyone will be happy.”

“Gabriel, I will not let that happen!”

“It seems to me like you cannot stop me. You only 'follow orders' remember?” He laughed. A silent evil laugh, deep in his throat. “I tend to think that religion is the perfect foundation for war. Tell you what: the winner get's a statue made of himself in the Cathedral. I'll make sure of it,” he continued.

“I don't want a statue and I will not let you do this!” That was my last warning.

“We shall see.” He stated finalizing his cynical speech.

The field was congested with an enormous multitude. Two colossal crowds on either side of each other. I could see weapons in some hands. Bibles, lit flames, torches and crosses in other hands. I saw robes of red and of black. Shields, swords and soldiers in armor.

The Protestant militia on one side, and the Catholic armada on the other. Their sole intent was to destroy one and other completely. Until nothing remained of the other side.

Either side believed that their god would save them and set them free and that 'truth' would prevail.

Gabriel was elated, utterly rejoicing with all the occurrences. You see, his goal was to destroy life. Nothing more and nothing less.

This was his revenge for not having had his way. For not being the chosen one. He wanted this! He thrived for it! He had made it his ultimate goal to obtain it.

I could see him floating around in the background, whispering into the ears of the soldier and guards. Uncertainty of what he was saying abounded, but whatever it was made them even angrier. They could not see him but I was sure they could hear his influences. To an extent, I was also sure that they believed him.

Their faces would change from fear to pure hatred: disgust for their opponents.

Suddenly, a cry in the distance rattled my attention. “Attack!”

The crowds thrust together with no mercy. Everything slowed down. Excitement and numbness filled the air. Their was a combination of hate, love, sorrow, violence, defiance and decision that flowed on the battle field between them.

It was hatred for their contenders. Love, for their faith. Sorrow, for their inevitable losses. But it was violence, defiance and decision that drove them.

The crowds flowed together swiftly and smoothly. Molten lava and scolding oil, they were. Melding within each other like liquified enmity. A tangled web of rancor.

I heard screams and cries. Clinging of metal against metal. The scent of fire and smoke streamed in the air with every gust of wind. The worst of it all, was the death toll. Dead believers and soldiers that gathered in the crowd seemed to think they were still alive, floating along with savage violence lingering in their eyes. I found myself in a mad rush to collect them all.

By this point Gabriel was crouched over, squatting on the top of the Cathedral's steeple seemingly pleased with himself. Smiling as though the knowledge that he was winning the battle was settling in.

What could I do? I had no idea how I could stop this. It was not my position. I was no longer a warrior either; I was a slave. A slave to my own existence. No longer meant for anything of purpose, other than the collection of passing souls. The fury of my incapacity seeped in like coal aflame through a thin sheet, igniting my anger.

I would do the only thing I could think of. Go after Gabriel! I refused to let him sit there and bask in whatever pleasure he obtained from all of this. I was already damned so worries of meaningless repercussions did not torment me. Nothing could be worse than already being condemned to this existence. Even still, I would not let Gabriel have his way. Not if I could do anything about it.

I flew to him. Anger, righteousness and pain overwhelming me. I'd never flown before that day. As the matter of fact it was the first time I'd realized that I could use my wings. Swiftly flying behind him, I grabbed him, wrapping my arms from behind, around his torso, making his wings useless. His body tensed and he stood to his feet as he tried his best to lift his arms and loosen my grip.

With all of the strength I could muster, I lifted one arm while still holding him firmly with the other and grabbed a hold of one of his wings, tearing it. Dislodging it from his back. I heard him screech and double over in pain.

A split second later he grabbed one of my arms a flipped me over. Refusing to let him go, we both fell from the roof top to the war ground below. As we fell, things seemed to slow down, then our eyes transformed—pupil, iris, sclera—mine to balls of brilliant gold, with flecks of opal and silver. Gabriel's, from soft blue to pure globes of angry sapphire.

When we hit the ground, I fell pinned beneath him but I would not give up. I kicked a leg up with all my might, making him fly from on top of me to behind me. Summoning my scythe and it came to me in a blink of an eye filling my empty hand. Gabriel saw me and summoned his sword, which also came to him as fast as his thought would allow.

We both leaped to our feet and crouched over into a battle stance, readying ourselves for the immanent war that was to take place between the two of us. I leaped, scythe in hand and swung with knowledgeable swiftness at Gabriel. Knowing that if I'd caught him, I would have quite literally sliced off his head.

My weapon made a whistling sound when it carved through the air and went for my nemesis. He barely dodged it and jumped back in order to then, almost immediately, lunge forward with his sword to swing at me.

“Azriel brother,” he mocked. “I cannot tell you how much I am enjoying this dance. Thank you.” He said sarcastically, breathing heavily as we danced around—a warriors dance.

Maliciousness had become his second nature. “I might not be able to stop the war you started Gabriel, but I will do my best to stop you!” I promised him.

Our dance continued for several minutes, then I heard a horn blow from the distance. The battle horn blew with a sound of triumph about it. I glanced over to see what had happened. One of the teams on the vast field had won this battle. In the split second that I turned to look over at the crowd, Gabriel disappeared.

Our battle did not end that night.

Decades later, a statue was built in his honor at that Cathedral. The thought curled a small wicked smile of anger on my mouth and a minimal shrug of contempt.

"If Death Should Love Me"
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