• The first thing I really need to point out was that it wasn’t easy. No, seriously, listen. We’re of angel stock. God created us to be vessels of infinite love for Himself and all that He created. For a span of time that you could never even begin to imagine, before He started on the BIG project, Creation, we sang in choirs that filled the void, and sung only for our love for Him.

    And so, after our little tiff, when me and one third of the Bene Elohim (the sons of God) fell from Heaven’s Grace, we had to adjust.

    You’ve probably heard about my pride issue. I’m famed for it. Sorry? Anyway, so here we all were, a group of renegade Angels, cast from Heaven and banished to Hell, which, seeing as Creation was really only in its early days, didn’t consist of much. And let me tell you, these Angel’s were NOT happy with me. I still remember it now, the anger, the accusation, the “you told us we could defeat God!” Well that wasn’t fair, not really. I told them we could be free of God. Free to be something other than stupid yes-men, which was all we had been before.

    Except we weren’t really free, not even in Hell, where we all felt the absence of God and shivered from a coldness that was not physical but went straight through our very beings. And me with my pride, I felt cheated. We had rebelled, we had fought, and yet we were just as chained to our Creator as ever, and grieved at our loss.

    Well I was not having that. And so it wasn’t easy, but we began to transform ourselves into creatures that acted away from the will of God. Then Adam inhaled his first breath, and was shortly followed by Eve, and I saw in them something which filled me with rage and anger. He had created my brothers and I in complete perfection, beautiful, flawless, and yet gave us only one purpose, one path, to love Him and sing to His glories. To deviate from that resulted in expulsion. But these strange and ugly creatures were permitted to do as they pleased, with only one or two rules. And so, though we loved them, just as we loved everything He created, my brothers and I found our new purpose, to corrupt those which our Father favoured most.

    You must have asked yourself why I was even in the Garden of Eden anyway, right? I mean, surely if God had created the perfect paradise for his new children, He would have put a little more security at the gate? It troubles me sometimes too. Wondering just how much of what I do are my own actions, and how much of it He planned. But still, it was my first venture, my first attempt at getting little humans to disobey the rules of their Creator, and I must admit, I didn’t do too badly. Adam had no curiosity. He spent day after day naming all the animals he found in the Garden, but it was Eve who sat and watched them and learnt their behaviours. If the Bible makes Eve look weak, willing to give into temptation, then that’s not exactly fair. She just had a thirst for knowledge, and that’s exactly what I offered her.

    And perhaps I hoped, just for a moment, that I’d fail. That Adam and Eve would prove incorruptible, and so worthy of the love that I could not help but feel for them. But maybe that’s part of their charm, that they are capable of being such bloody sods, and also so very, very good.

    Shortly after Adam and Eve were expelled from Eden (He’s not doing very well, is He? Already had to chuck me and my lot out of Heaven and now he’s got this huge Garden and no one to go in it) I was visited by an old friend.

    I didn’t recognise them at first, but then I wasn’t really in touch with the happenings in Heaven, and apparently all my brothers had changed a little bit. They’d taken on the image of those that God favoured. That’s Adam, for those of you who haven’t been paying attention. Well, mostly Adam. With one exception. Jophiel. Or Zophiel, as she likes to be called these days. Yup, that’s right, she. She was the only one of the Angels who figured that Eve was just as good a template for a body as Adam was, and so is pretty much the only female Angel. Not that she’s actually a she, anymore then I’m a he, but maybe gender is a learned thing.

    Jophiel and me, we had been close. It took me a long time to figure out why she didn’t fall with the rest of us (did I say fall? I meant descend with purpose). She never really fit in with the rest of the host. She had none of their arrogance; none of their self-righteousness, most Angels make me want to slap their smug little grins off their faces, but not my Joph. Before she took female form, she was all sweetness and light, and always made me think of the smell of deserono, or what deserono would smell like when it had been invented. Now, looking human, she was pretty as a picture, but rather sad looking.

    Still, when Michael and me went head to head in The War Of Heaven, Jophiel had stood right behind that b*****d along with that suck up, Zadkiel, and fought against me. So let’s not get too sentimental.

    “What’s with the new threads?” I asked, once I recognised her.

    “We took on the form of humans, so as to better guide and protect them.” She told me, “Now that they no longer inhabit Eden, there are many dangers that face them.”

    “Yeah, because Eden was great at protecting them, what with me getting in and everything.”

    “Brother, why must you work against our Father?” She asked, “Is it not enough that that you have earned His banishment, now you want His contempt?”

    “I’m not having this conversation with you Joph.” I told her, eyeing, from my Angelic perspective, one of Eve’s little nipper’s, Cain, “It’s boring. The choices have been made, blah, blah, blah, so just flutter back to daddy dearest, and leave me and my boys alone.”

    “Your boys?” One perfect eyebrow rose, “You’re their leader now?”

    “Well it’s my fault that they’re down here” I hurriedly corrected myself “Not that it’s a bad thing, you know? Freedom from God, making your own choices, not to be scoffed out.”

    “Well then I hope this brings you and ‘your boys’ happiness brother, for you will never feel the happiness of His embrace again.” And with that she left me.

    That’s the one thing I never did understand about Jophiel. I mean, we all loved God. We all still love God. It’s part of who we are, part of how we were made. No rebellion, or absence of his presence could change that. But I never met another Angel except for her who actually liked the bugger.