He was an angel's son. He was as beautiful as they, his skin the same flawless alabaster, his body as sublimely shaped, his voice as pure and rich. His hair was silver white, the white of clouds, of snow, of man's idea of Heaven. His eyes were black and depthless and intelligent, as some of them had dark eyes, but his wings.... His wings were also black, strong and well-formed, the feathers straight and soft, but they were the color of night, of pitch, of things the angels did not like to name. They were the color of those things the angels were set against; they marked him irrevocably.
He did not know his father, did not know who - or what - his father was. His mother would not tell him. Angels were not born in any case, they were created, they were made. And as much as she loved him, she could not protect him, for she could not hide the darkness of his wings. She could not even protect herself; she knew the consequence of her act, and went meekly when they came for her. She could not protect her son but she could name him, she could give him that. To name a thing is to define it, she told him, before they took her away, before they killed her. And to define a thing is to give it life.
He had that from her, he had life. But he could not have safety.
An incubus' son, the angels whispered, a demon's son. He must not be allowed to remain. They could not kill him - they could not kill one of their own without just cause, as they had killed his mother, for what he was was the fault of her actions, not his own - they could not kill him when he had done nothing. But they could banish him. They could not allow him to live among them.
Why do you do this to me? he asked them as they bound his hands behind him, as they bound his feet and pinned his glorious wings. Are you not loving and merciful? Were you not created so?
You are not one of us, they told him. You are not pure. And we were created as an example, and we were created to serve. You cannot do either.
They were implacable as he pleaded with them, as he begged, as he wept. They listened unmoved as he tried to reason, as he tried to appeal. They would not be swayed by the emotion in his voice or the tears in his dark eyes.
This is our judgement, they said. You can never be one of us, not completely. Angels cannot hide their innermost selves, that is how we were made. We cannot kill you, for that is also how we were made, but we cannot suffer your presence among the uncorrupt.
They rendered this judgement, reasonable as it was to them, and did not mourn as they pushed him off the edge.
design ©2001 by Cindy Rosenthal
Angel's Son 2001 by Cindy Rosenthal
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