Carpe Noctem

Chapter Five: Petrova

I glare angrily at Bleddyn, “what do we do until then?” I can’t help it. As much as I don’t know how I feel about her, I know that no matter who it was they would still be reacting the same, inadequately. If this was me, there would be no difference, there are always a million rules and procedures they have to follow. What is it we are owed? “Are we really meant to sit around and wait and see if there is a maybe chance a warlock might help us?”

“What else can we do?” Bleddyn’s exasperation is clear but what does that matter. After all, all we are is warriors to a cause. I sigh heavily again, trying to make my disapproval clear. When I see it registered I accept my job is done. “We have some support coming to keep an eye here, until it is secure or until we hear back from Mr Prior. You can all go home and get some rest.”

“Seriously, Lei gets taken and we are told to go to bed? We want to help; we want to get her back” Monty speaks up no longer quiet, but somehow we are all agreeing with him.

“I know you do, I know you all do but right now, you have all done your regular patrols, eviscerated so many demons in one go. You deserve and need some rest. We may know nothing until tomorrow so please get some rest and we can all talk together tomorrow. Ok? It is late.” Bleddyn implored us in a way that he could have convinced our exhausted bodies to do anything right now, it wasn’t until he had put it like that, that the feeling of exhaustion finally had a voice in my body urging me home.

Leaving the warehouse, I decided I wanted to walk home once we got our stuff from our lockers. Ward offered to take me home but I just wanted to get away from people for a while, even him. I didn’t want to talk about any of it. Not right now. He saw me onto the bus and messaged me, even though he arrived home much quicker than I did, he stayed up messaging me. I suppose it made me feel safe, even though I can hold my own it doesn’t matter. I allowed myself to feel for the heat in the air, the warmth on a cool breeze.

Looking up from my phone and shoving it in my bag I looked up into the sky now a deeper shade of blue, coated in specks of light, stars all in the sky. The angels we were told as children, watching over us to keep us safe and show us the way, show us the light in the darkness.

There was a slightly brighter hue ahead, my way home had been made brighter by streetlights flickering into life, finally dark enough to work but not dark enough to be really needed. Turning the corner, I saw something up ahead. Something that seemed to have its own way of light, not another face glued to a phone, it was different. In this darkness the person ahead seemed to have their own sort of lightness about them. Each step away from me seemed to shine with warmth. I stopped still for a moment. I concentrated. Feeling through the breeze what energy was surrounding them, it was warm, in the most unusual way. It made my cheeks feel flushed, like when you have held your face up towards the sun and smiled at just how sweet and warm it feels. I began to walk again, following the sweet warmth without meaning to, it was going the same direction I was headed.

When the person turned I stumbled on my own feet, I saw a face that was some kind of marvel. A handsomeness that seemed so otherworldly. A youthful charm in his smile when he saw me regain my balance. He waited for me to catch up a little till we walked almost side by side. He didn’t talk though, he just looked at me with those eyes, those dark earthy eyes that just shone, the same way he did, with that aura of inexplicable warmth. “Do you know who I am?” He asked, his voice was warm and rich and I forgot exactly where I was going. I had started to follow his lead. I shook my head no. “Really? Think about it?”

“I’ve seen you before” I remember, searching my memories, the final ritual of the sway before ascension. “You’re the angel?” I ask knowing the answer.

“I am your angel. I have broken so very many rules for you.” He smiled, as though it would never cost him a thing. “You remind me of someone.”

“I do?” I ask wondering what he is talking about. It is only now I begin to register that we are no longer walking down the streets I take every day. I am wrapped in a soft shimmering hooded cloak, obscuring me a little, and so is he, a soft shimmering silk that is like the sun bouncing off of a coursing river shattering and splintering light in all directions. “Who?”

“Myself. Do you know my name?” He asks. I can feel a name on my tongue, but it feels wrong, like I know another name at the same time.

I am escorted into a room, unsure of how we arrived I look around but the room just gives a feeling of clarity and privacy. “I shouldn’t say it” I realise. I don’t know how or why or why I am not paying more attention to what is happening around me. We are sat close to one another on a soft, short sofa facing a great empty marble fire place.

“My earth name is different yes, it is my secret here not there. What is my name? The name that is not spoken on earth.” I can feel the warmth radiating from him.

“The name I know without knowing how I even know it?” I ask, my mouth feeling like dry cotton, even though my palms are sweating with how close he is sat to me, I can feel my heart beating more than it probably should, like after a short run when its playing catch-up.

“Yes… I want you to say it.” He leans in so I could whisper it and he would still here.

“Ymirxi” I say. “What does it mean?” I can’t help but ask.

“Mercy. You said it almost perfect for the first time though its pronounced Mier-zee.” I repeat him mimicking, trying to get it perfect until he nods at my third attempt.

“That’s not the name the world down there knows you as is it? The one my parents know you by, that’s something else.” I fish through the mist of thoughts trying to ignore how close he is to me. How warm it feels in this bright room even without a fire burning. “Arielriele”

“That’s the one that no one here must know, or I have a feeling history will repeat itself.” He looked around as though making sure no one had heard me even though we were alone.

“What do you mean?” I can’t look away from the furrow in his brows.

“Do you know how your kind were made?” I nodded to him. He looked at me in a way that asked me to tell the story.

“Ok, so an angel gave his blood to some humans, some Adam and Eve’s that were in some way special so that they could protect their kind from the things that hide in darkness.”

“And the rest of it?” He urged, but all I could do was shrug my shoulders. He finally continued my basic explanation, “when the angel gave his blood he broke an unwritten rule and he was punished. He was thrown from heaven to below, earth. He rejected a mortal life and went to live in the underworld. He became some kind of King in the underworld. A fallen angel is a broken angel and that is where he found his refuge.”

“Did you know him?” I couldn’t help but ask.

“Yes” I swallowed as he spoke, “he was my brother.” I stared open mouthed.

“But you…. you broke that rule… that rule that he did, you’re my blood bearer” I look to him, searching for there to be another answer but there isn’t, he just nods. “Why would you do something so stupid?” I ask, out of place or not, I couldn’t help myself.

“I needed to, the world needs protecting so much more now than it did then and so many have abandoned their calling.” He sounds like an idealistic teenager.

“You are taking so many risks; do you not even appreciate that you are here?”  I gesture at the room around us.

“So are you” he points out.

“You brought me here… Another risk… What if someone finds out?” Should I really be outraged that he has shown me what is up here? Should I really be arguing right now?

“I needed to meet you in a way that was safer than if I had stayed with you down there. I have needed to talk with you for a very long time.” The boyishness faded, there was a look in his eyes that read something more than this being a fun, whimsical, spur of the moment idea.

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