God does not change the winds.
That is what his brother had said.
Darkness engulfed Cassiel as he plunged through space, hurtling towards Earth.
The angel braced his wings and fastened his grip on the sword. Trying to find comfort in the last words of his dear brother.
God does not change the winds.
It was during the final days of the war. Michael’s armies had routed Lucifer and his pack of traitors to their last stronghold. Athaniel, the fairest of all the angels, had flown up to negotiate their conditions of surrender. Cassiel had the honor of accompanying him.
At the meeting, Athaniel asked Lucifer how he planned to be king without a dead father. And as pride rose before reason, Lucifer answered with sword. Ending diplomacy by planting it through his chest.
God was not there that day.
Or if He was, He did not seem to mind, for the winds blew gently across His Kingdom as it had done since the beginning of time.
Athaniel, dying in Cassiel’s arms, slain by his brother. His last words denouncing this futile war to change the winds. And as Michael flew to their aid, the fairest Archangel drew his last breath.
Lucifer, along with his traitors were tried and banished, cast headlong out of Heaven by God’s own accord.
Cassiel often wondered if Michael secretly blamed him for the loss of their brother.
How fitting that now, aeons later it was his own destiny to fall from the heavens. To live without God’s grace.
He closed his eyes, the shame too heavy to bear for such a devoted servant.
To open and see what they had seen? Feel what they had felt?
Cassiel was no rebel. He had a true calling. Still divine, if only by heart. One blessed with a purpose, a most crucial task, and one that he was determined to see through.
The lone angel broke atmosphere above the Pacific Ocean in the dead of night, traveling faster than a bullet and heading for the western seaboard. His landing was less than graceful as he slammed into the desert at supersonic speed.
The shock wave could be heard for miles. The earth shook. Rocks and dirt burst up into the sky. Smoke twirled and engulfed the fallen angel as he gathered himself, rising to his feet in the small crater his impact had created.
The air was thick here. Thick and smoky. And it smelled of war.
He shook his wings and raised his head. The towering starry skies gazed back at him—Silent, and distant.
They must have heard his arrival. They would come for him, and in this state they could easily sense him.
The sword went first. He firmly planted it into the center of the crater, quietly apologizing to Raphael for disposing of such fine craftsmanship. Then his vambraces, followed by the torso armor, and lastly the tunica.
He stood there, naked and alone. A small dagger in his hand.
He looked up at the skies.
The silent starry skies gazed back at him.
“I am Cassiel of Araboth” He whispered. “High messenger of the Heavenly Host, defender of the Empyrean.” His majestic wings spreading out into the night.
He had a true calling. Still divine, if only by heart. One blessed with a purpose, a most crucial task.
Then he tightened his grip around the dagger and proceeded to hack his wings off.
The wind blowing gently across the desert.