I have this recurring thought. I keep thinking that Ares will probably kill me for spite, so if I’m going to die anyway in place of my daughter then why not do this? Why not take him somewhere unreachable? But, where is such a place?
I wanted to make good on my beautiful husband’s request to come back to him. But, I think he knows in his heart that there is a good chance that I will not survive this. That I will not come home. That the feeling of our hearts dropping into our stomachs is the tell tale sign that what we hope for is about to NOT come true.
We wanted to hang on to that last moment. To let that hope, that painful wisp of hope comfort us in the face of such cruelty. I had come to say good bye in more ways than one. Ares’ act of kindness was not just to let my husband know that he had been left for another man, but to let him see me walk away to my death voluntarily. Was a sadistic joke.
This was his way of making sure that my family would feel so betrayed that they would not come after me later. Ares wanted to make sure that any glimmer of hope that I would somehow be rescued by a family who would always come after me was shattered and that I would die slowly knowing that there was no way out.
Ares wanted his way, his prize, his fun. Now that he does, he may even have some use for me in his quest for more power, or rather to regain the power he once had that is now lost. He is obsolete in this present time. I have a chance, albeit a small one to save a few people from the death that awaits them. He has been known for his demonstrations of power that ultimately translate into, fear me or be destroyed. People fell for this once and I’m sure that people progress but as a whole do not fully ever change. Not when there is no effort to do so.
Not only is there no hope for Ares changing, there is no hope for people who do not know the truth about what he is. They will bow. They will bow and bathe in their own blood. There is something I can do. One thing. I have to send him somewhere that Lucifer can’t just toss him back to earth from. But where?
I need Raphael’s blessing. I need him to cleanse me and give me strength. I need to dig deep into my own faith in Jesus and the redemption that I know I already have. I prayed for forgiveness while I stood at the Jade Gates, knowing that I had it. But, the cleansing that I long for is a stripping of impurity from my powers. I need to be able to make a far jump and I know just the place.
Even though I may die in the process, I can at least buy the people of earth some time and have expelled him someplace where he can’t do any real damage.
I walked into the city. People looked at me somber, bothered by something. Was it me? Who would have known by now? Did Ares come back here to gloat already?
I felt it though. The pulsating beat of everyone’s heart. The link to life that sustains a Blood Silk, someone in hell to retrieve someone who does not belong there. But who was it?
The funnel cloud over the mountain began to form thus signaling a descending. Raphael would be here in a matter of hours. I clouded into my quarters and cried. A real cry. All of the tears I had held back from Sam and while Ares kissed and touched me. All the tears I’d better cry now for the fear of my own death and what that would do to my children. How ashamed and sorry Zion would be that the last time she saw her mother alive was when she tried to warn her to walk away and her own stubbornness got the best of her. Sorrow for how I would be leaving my boys behind to figure it out when they both still had so much to learn about life.
I took a shower, washed my hair, and began to make myself look as beautiful as I once was when I too ruled the world with the vampires. I might as well look the part. After all, I will be returning to Ares soon and I doubt he will hold me to his time frame if I come back looking like a movie star. Besides, this is time that I need. I have to wait for my commanding officer. Raphael should be here soon.
I walked out, feeling very self conscious. I can imagine the gossip now. ‘Who does she think she is? What is she trying to prove?’ It makes the knot in my stomach a little bit tighter because it’s bad enough that I don’t know for sure if I was just given a grace period to get my stuff and leave and Raphael is really going to just tell me that I’m unwelcome here now.
I held my head up and walked down to the grand hall with determination. Like the woman fighting though the crowd to touch the hem of Jesus’ garment. It doesn’t matter what they think. I need help.
The purple tornado of light touched down, Raphael’s stature shrank from a towering fifty foot giant to a normal sized man, and he stood there peering into the crowd somehow finding me. His eyes fixed on mine. But, then his face softened and he extended his hand towards me.
“Gwendolyn come here. I have a job for you to do.” he said warmly.
Did he not know what I had just done? Why was he being so nice to me?
“Now, now. You know that’s not true don’t you? Of course I know. You will be used for the greater glory and yes, your idea to strand Ares somewhere is a God given one. He will not be there for long, but at the appointed time when he returns your comrade will dispose of him. Once this is done you can return to your family until it is time to deliver the Ark Prophecy to the Bitten One. Okay? You up for an adventure where you know you will win for sure no matter how bad it gets?” Raphael asked with his eyes smiling.
“Isn’t that cheating?” I asked chuckling both out of relief and nervousness.
“Well, that is why on those viedo games it is called ‘God mode’ when you want the ultimate safety to go through your adversaries and win no matter how many times you get shot at.” he said warmly as he led me to the center of the room.
“Okay. I am ready for an adventure.” I said taking in a deep breath.
“Your outfit suggests it. Now… take him to The Red Spot. Beware the seduction of Callisto, and above all to not be enchanted by Europa. You have three days. Take my hand Gwen. The power you feel flowing into you will be for two jumps. One, to cloud yourself there, stay a while and gather information, and the second cloud yourself back. In order to come home, you must say the Prayer of Jabez. You know it, yes?” Raphael told me in his rolling lovely Spaniard accent.
“Oh that you would bless me indeed, and enlarge my territory. That your hand would be with me. That you would keep me from evil that I may not cause pain. And God grant to me what I have requested.” I said.
“Good girl. Your three days there will seem like weeks. But, you will survive and go on a real vacation when you come back. Okay?” Raphael said as he patted me on the shoulder and smiled brightly at me. He had confidence in me. Every confidence that God would not fail and that I would be fine. At last I felt real relief.
“If you’re here, then where is Elle?” Ryan said making his way through the crowd. “She left here with Amelia to find you and Amelia is here.”
“She’s at her house. Would you like to join her?” Raphael said smiling at him. He walked towards him and blew a stream of white cloud on Ryan. He instantly disappeared.
So that’s how angels share the cloud. I should try that sometime.
“Excuse me, but where am I?” asked a young man, no older than twenty four, wearing tattered and bloody clothes looking fresh from a shipwreck.
In all my years I have never seen him so innocent, human, and unintimidating. As I live and breathe… Caleb.
Raphael winked at me. I smiled weakly and clouded back to where Ares had told me to meet him earlier. I was at Dracula’s castle. It felt eerie to be back here. The old days were long gone and it was going to take a while before I could get used to being in the familiar haunts of a vampire without a Nephilim entourage with me on a mission to destroy their work. So this is what the grass is like on the other side of the fence.
Road Trip Post Cards…
(Photo courtesy of: www.astronoo.com)
Music for this episode – Set Fire To the Rain by Adele