Blas Archangels: ASHWINGS (Complete, 28 Chapters) – C. Swallow

Ashwings -23- The Silver Burns
 
What’s worse is that it’s Monday; I have 6 days to simmer in my anxiety for the 7th.

I sit now, at a feast, for Guzza. He has arrived back at the Lavent Ashwing, as I’ve been told, but he has yet to enter.
 
Everyone is seated at the largest dining table, stretching forever across the room. We all await his entry.
 
“Oh, Ivy, are you sure you’re okay?” December grabs my hand and squeezes it.
 
“I told you I’m perfectly fine,” I nod.
 
“You seem – forgive me – you just seem off, like you’ve seen a ghost or… been hurt…” December guesses and I pull my hand from hers.

“I told you it doesn’t matter what happened to me, what matters is that I’m alive and everyone is safe,” I explain while December looks unconvinced and Alexios sips wine.
 
“Well we cleaned the halls without you,” Alexios tries to joke, “Good work avoiding chores. Ivy.”
 
“Trust me, Alexy, I would have preferred to have cleaned the floors,” I murmur as I pick up a cake and I nibble on a corner.
 
Valentine sits at the head of the feast for Guzza, looking majorly stressed out.
 
Myron and Thorn are with Guzza now, soon to appear.
 
The problem for me was still Thorn himself. Lucifer’s second identity reincarnated in another Archangel.
 
I had an unrelenting desire to avoid Thorn. I could not cope with his likeness to the d-
 
“Here he comes!” Myron waltzes in first from the large archway, his wings raised triumphantly.
 
Thorn is next, light grey wings, politely closed behind his back to show off Guzza – who is about to turn the last corner for the big reveal.
 
“Guzza bears the Flames of God himself,” Thorn announces, “An unrivalled feat – saving the purest one from the depths of hell.”

“It was barely an effort.”
 
Everyone hushes.
 
We hear the velvet voice of Guzza, gifting all our unworthy ears – but we do not see him.
 
But then, not soon after, his form shimmers in the air, he was so bright he was basically invisible – but now he flickers into shape, from burning atoms to a white light that flashes through the entire feasting hall – causing an uproar of gasps and delighted screams.
 
Because then we see Guzza himself, all of him in his naked glory.
 
“You can address him as Gabriel,” Thorn announces for him, “I doubt you’ll hear him speak ever again – welcome back to High Holiness, Gabriel.”
 
Guzza inclines his head, still the giant in the room, rightly proud – he glances to Valentine and then me.
 
He nods at Valentine.
 
Then Guzza focuses on me and I look away.
 
I think I’m the only one who dares to do so.
 
I feel I can’t look upon such perfect grace. Guzza’s wings are brighter, wider and burning with silver flames. His chest is a golden tan, when before he was just olive, now he is really something else to hold your eye. He had a pure power to rock the whole universe beyond realms.
 
“Gabriel can enter and travel out of heaven, at will, Valentine,” Myron chuckles and walks up.

“Thank God he came back. Eat,” Valentine orders everyone, waiting for Guzza to come forward.
 
I can feel Guzza’s curious eyes burning through me.

I just keep my head down.
 
I felt all kinds of levels of anger for him pushing me across the line; after sacrificing me for a greater good. But right now, I feel guilt unlike anything I’ve felt before.
 
Valentine and Myron used to make me feel dirty; usually in a fun way.
 
Now, with Guzza’s eyes even transformed from Red Super Nova – to a Silver Flame. I am not only judged. I am worthless –!
 
Never, Guzza answers my thoughts, it’s just an affect, Ivy, do not lose your heart so soon. You are my charge.
 
I suck in a delighted breath, but I do not answer him.

“I can’t believe we’ll have an anchor from heaven to protect our home now,” Alexios whispers, “I bet God stops trying to kill all of us, Gabriel will watch over us. Trusted enough, yes? From all the love making we’ll put him through. We’ll keep him tame, Decy.”

“Very smart thinking, Alexios,” December nods.
 
I remain quiet, staring at my cup of wine.
 
As I take a sip, I see Thorn walk by in the wine’s blood red reflection. Just by my shoulders, Lucifer’s exact fucking image, upon another soul, turns his head and watches me back through the reflection.
 
When I look over my shoulder, Thorn has already walked by and out onto a balcony to speak to a group of pregnant succubus.
 
“You will not sit?” Valentine asks, and when I glance forward briefly to the head of the feast, I see he speaks of Guzza. Without a word, Guzza walks around the table and straight for me.
 
I still can’t gaze upon him.
 
I freeze as Guzza lays a hand on my shoulder. I wince but I stand up anyway, prepared to follow him and hear him out. But I would do nothing else.
 
I walk with my head bowed always, following Guzza out of the feasting hall to the garden across for some privacy. Once we’re by a boulder, I lean against it and turn to see Guz fill my whole vision with his powerful body.
 
All I see is rock hard skin and a perfect Archangel… who hurt me to gain this power.
 
“Look at me,” Guzza rubs a thumb over my chin gently, “Please?” I blink twice and eventually I do feel confident enough to raise my head, “I had to hurt you Ivy, because if I didn’t fix this obsession from Lucifer; God knows you’d be torn apart between us. It was a whole lot of betrayal – for long term safety. Lucifer will not outmatch me,” Guzza nods, “Understand? And Valentine stepped in. Thank God. He ended your suffering a bit quicker.”

“Can you read my mind?” I ask, my lip trembling.
 
“Only intentions or reservations,” Guzza blinks, “You are reserved. Are you angry at me still?”
 
I cannot answer.
 
Should I tell him? God help me, I’m reaching out to Lucifer.
 
I wait for the devil’s reply; I am curious for it.
 
Nothing.
 
For some reason, that empty space in my head scares me more. It’s like I’ve invited the devil into my brain, to sit and wait for my answer, to add my insolence to a long list of punishment if I blurt out the deal that was made.
 
Every Sunday I’d burn in hell.

What could be a worse fate?
 
“Ivy,” Guzza presses a hand to my neck and jaw, leaning down – I know he wants to kiss me better.
 
I close my eyes and lift my mouth, breathing in a shaky breath.
 
I smell divinity off Guzza’s lips before they collide with mine and I suddenly shy away, so violently I knock my head into the rock behind me.
 
“Argh!” I fall to my knees and grab the back of my head, crying out from the sharp pain.
 
Guzza cups the back of my skull, instantly repairing the damage done.
 
“Ivy, what’s wrong?” Guzza hauls me up, off my feet, right into the air above him, “What in Heaven -?”

I hold my head with my palms, feeling tears leak down my face.
 
No. I knew it now.
 
The devil was winning.
 
In the face of all that is good he found a loop hole. He created me. I’d be the death of everyone.
 
“Everything is right again, now Ivy, calm d-”
 
“You failed me,” I whisper, finally deciding to speak my truth. I look into Guzza’s face and he looks devastated before I even tell him the rest, “You had pure intentions. You were rewarded with a pure power. I – I was vulnerable for a second too long.”
 
What the fuck did Luci do?” Guzza scoops me to his chest protectively and starts stalking off from the feast, towards his bedroom, “I’ll never let him live it down if he deceived your mind–!”
 
“No, Lucifer deceived all of us – in my lack of trust for you, I was too strained, you must understand me, I had to agree to a deal.”
 
“What deal?” Guzza whispers the question, furious, but not at me. At least I hope not.

“Lucifer will have me every 7th day in hell,” when I admit it, I watch Guzza’s face drop.
 
He blinks as he carries me into his room, places me on my feet and walks away separately to the balcony.
 
I walk out behind him, timidly, feeling awful sick.
 
“What do I do now?” I ask.
 
I speak to Guzza’s sculpted back, as he faces the night sky of the E.W., looking up as if searching for answers.
 
His silver wings flutter with impatience.
 
“You survive him,” Guzza finally answers me, “You… tolerate… your Father.”
 
“Why does the devil want me?” I ask, sucking in a breath, “Guzza, please, answer me. Help me.”
 
Guzza finally spins, his furious eyes find mine, a silver flame burning bright.
 
“Watch yourself. I am Gabriel. You’re mine for 6 days and His for 1. You will obey me at all times, Ivy. You are my charge. You are my responsibility. You will listen.”
 
“I am,” I nod, “Just help me beat the devil at his game.”

“Lucifer wins by lust – so you will learn to love him,” Guzza responds tightly, “Not his lust. I repeat. You will not love his lust. You will learn to love his wings. You can be in the devil’s possession but the rest is up to you.”

“If he hurts me?” I whisper it.
 
“I will make it better,” Guzza’s jaw locks, “You will resist him at every turn even while in his territory.”
 
“Guzza -” I hiccup on a frightened breath as Guzza comes closer, fluttering his wings once, passing the gap between us to press a hand on my chest – burning away my clothes to dust.
 
“I. Am. Gabriel.”
 
Guzza doesn’t need to snarl anymore – instead his tone is the of pure authority.
 
It’s worse than a snarl.
 
It’s a command you obey or bleed for.
 
So, I nod.
 
But I also look down to hide the lie in my eyes.
 
He was my Guz – always.
 
I didn’t want to change his name.
 
“Say it to me, sweet lamb,” Guzza prompts me.
 
There was just one thing missing here…
 
…me.
 
“No,” I whisper.
 
Guzza pauses, taking his fill of my defiance and hating it, no doubt.
 
“…you are causing the kind of trouble that brews extreme punishment, Ivy… don’t test this kind of patience… you know your Master is hearing your every word… I will hear you submit. Say my name…”

“I am your slave in desire but I will never submit my will,” I finally look up, finding some kind of power from within.
 
…free will?
 
……smarter than you seem? Sweet heart, it’s my gift to you; passion……
 
Lucifer answers me.
 
Guzza grabs my chin then, forcing fingers over my tongue. I suck on them with a greedy mouth but I glare back at Guz with my eyes.
 
……do me a favour and pleasure my brother while you’re there, he seems quite ready to split you in two and I wouldn’t mind being witness……my sweetheart on 7……obey him now while you’re free of me……
 
“What in Hell is he saying to you?” Guzza now lets a snarl rip over me, clearly aware when Lucifer is in my mind.
 
He takes his fingers from my mouth and holds my chin instead, waiting for my answer with a patience that is about to snap.

“…h-he wants me to please you,” I whisper it.
 
Guzza doesn’t glare.
 
He suddenly smiles brilliantly instead, though.
 
“Luci wants a friend?” Guzza tilts his head, while releasing my chin, cupping the top of my skull then pushing me down to my knees, forcefully putting me in my place, below him, “Interesting.”
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