A Shedload of Angels.
So I’ve just shunted myself up to level 5 of ‘War Monkeys’ and I’m settling in for a long, perilous stalk along the Eternal Plains when mum opens the bedroom door. “David, I’m up to my eyes in the kitchen and I’ve just noticed we’ve got no milk left. Be an angel and run down to the supermarket for me, will you?”
We’ve had one of our ‘talks’ about ‘pulling our weight’ just the other day and I recall making some foolish promises, so I’m like: “No problem, mother, I’ll be down in just a moment.” But I’m thinking: ‘Angel?’ Like, do I have the qualifications? So I do a bit of googling before I go.
I’m huddled up in the parka and it’s cold and wet out here, but I’m striding along past a boarded up shop front and there’s a feller with a pooch coming towards me. A pooch in a camouflage dog jacket. And I am affronted, like seriously affronted, by this ridiculous sight. How dare he? Does he know just who I am? For I am Arariel and I have charge over the waters of the earth, and fishermen invoke my name so that only the largest of fish swim into their nets. So let the water fall from heaven, let it rain, let it rain Especially on the kind of pratt who dresses his dog up in camouflage kit. Get a life, man.
After a bit the rain gets heavier and it’s colder still, icy like. I’m doing all right though because the hood keeps it off my head, the pockets are deep and my hands are warm. So time for an i.d. switch I think. Which one was it I fancied? Oh yes I am Nuriel, known as the Fire of the Lord, and I am the bringer of hailstorms. And my army is fifty myriads of angels and they are fashioned out of water and fire. And my power is spellbinding. Yeah. Awesome enough for me. Nuriel. The spellbinder!
Gets me right past the allotments, that one, and at my command the hail storm eases off by the time I’m passing the cemetery. It’s pretty drab as cemeteries go, just a couple of trees in the centre and some rough old grass between the stones. They could do with snazzing it up a bit. Make it more gothic, like. For am I not Azrael, Angel of the Dead, whose souls I transport to their destination once the dream of life has ceased. For I have four faces and four thousand wings and my whole body consists of eyes and tongues whose number consists of the number of people on earth. Yeah. That many eyes and tongues and I’d have that place looking like the hanging gardens of Babylon in no time flat.
Past the posh houses on the right, the ones with big hedges and mounted security boxes under their eaves, where the lawns are always immaculate, the garages double and they’ve all had big rockeries set up for them by Polish landscape gardeners. Of course they’re not as posh as the mansions, with their grounds and their lakes, out beyond the edge of the town. That’s where the money is. But the money has to deal with me, doesn’t it? For I am Sahaquiel and my name means Ingenuity of God. And I am associated with wealth and business, and I am Prince of a Heavenly Host, consisting of no less than 496,000 myriads of ministering angels. So deal with that, you wealthy bastards. 496, 000 myriads!
Not far now to the local Co-op. Bunch of bruisers coming my way, three fuzz-heads, tattoos on their necks and lugging six-packs. Not too keen on the way they’re looking at me, but of course, if they knew the truth they’d be quaking in their boots. Because, forget Sahaquiel, dudes . I am Wormwood and I am a warrior, at one with the Huns and Attila their king. And I have fallen from the sky, blazing like a torch and been the bringer of bitterness to all. See? Soon as I got into that one, they crossed the road, all three of them. Wimps.
Made it. Litre of green top in my hand and I’m waiting in line to be served. It’s taking ages. Every bugger in the line before me seems to want to buy lottery tickets and scratch cards, or fags out of the locked cupboards in the back. Don’t they realise? I have just reached level 5 of ‘War Monkeys’, the Eternal Plains await my conquering footsteps and here I am standing in line with a plastic bottle of milk. I don’t have time for this. For am I not Kerubial, principal regent with dominion over the Cherubim since Creation. And I am seven heavens tall and my body is made of burning coals and covered with thousands of eyes, my face made of fire, my eyes spark of light and my lashes are lightning bolts. And there is a crown of holiness on my head, and the bow of Shekinah is between my shoulders. Well, that got me to the head of the queue, didn’t it? Girl’s asking if I’ve got my Co-op card.
By the time I get back to our place, I’ve also worked my way through being Asteraoth, the thwarter of power; Metatron the celestial scribe; Dumah the angel of silence; Zaapiel, punisher of the wicked and Phouneriel, thwarter of disease. I mean, never mind your Marvel superheroes, get a franchise on this lot and the media rights’ll sort you well out for a century or two!
Mum’s rolling pastry. She gives me a smile, points at the fridge and says: “Oh thanks ever so. See? You can be on the side of the angels when you’ve a mind to be.”
I have just been an entire host of heavenly angels, and even one or two of the fallen. I have been exalted, I have blown trumpets and woken the dead. I have been a whole shedload of mighty angels, every one of them members of the Divine Council, the messengers of God.
I’ve been there! I know what they’re like
And who knows what it means to be on their side?