Prologue


“God does not change the winds.”
That is what his brother had said.

Darkness engulfed Cassiel as he plunged through space, hurtling towards the little blue planet where God made Man in His image.

He braced his wings and fastened the grip on his sword. Trying to find comfort in the last words of his dear brother Athaniel:

“God does not change the winds.”

It was during the final days of the war. Michael’s armies had routed the Oldest Brother and driven the pack of traitors to their last stronghold. Athaniel, the fairest of all the angels, had himself flown up to negotiate their conditions of surrender. Cassiel was chosen to accompany him.

At the meeting, Athaniel unwisely asked how the Oldest Brother planned on being crowned king without a dead father. Pride rose before reason and the Oldest Brother 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 has done since the beginning of time.

Athaniel, dying in Cassiel’s arms, slain by his kind. His last words were of a futile war to change the winds, and as Michael and Gabriel flew to their aid, the fairest Archangel drew his last breath.

The Oldest Brother, along with his traitors were tried and banished, cast headlong out of Heaven by God’s own accord.

Cassiel had often wondered if Michael and Gabriel secretly blamed him for the loss of their brother.

How fitting that now, aeons later it is his own destiny to fall from the heavens.
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?

Never.

Cassiel was not like the traitors. 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 flew up into the sky. Smoke twirled and engulfed the fallen angel as he gathered himself, rising to his feet in the small crater his arrival had created.

The air was thick here. Thick and smoky. And it smelled of war.

He shook his wings and looked up. The towering starry skies gazed back down at him—Silent, and distant.
Hell must have heard the arrival. They would all come for the angel, and in this state they would track him down.

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.

Cassiel stood there, naked and alone. With only a short dagger in his hand, looking up at the skies.

The silent starry skies gazed back down at him.

“I am Cassiel of Araboth” He whispered to it “High messenger of the Heavenly Host, Defender of the Empyrean.” He spread his majestic white wings 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 gently blowing across the desert.
















Next Chapter: Chapter 1 - The train a comin’