Raphael walked down the steps the next
morning. His head was aching. Ariel's mansion seemed to let in an
uncommon amount of light that he couldn't escape. He knew that it was
pretty late in the afternoon but his hangover had caused him to sleep longer
As he walked into the huge Victorian structured dining room his eyes connected with Uriel. Uriel wasn't the only one there though. Gabriel had been talking to Uriel.
"Good morning," he told them.
Uriel didn't reply at that moment. He just got up and walked out of the room. The clear animosity in Uriel's body language sent a shiver down Raphael's spine.
Gabriel remained in the dining room and a smile spread across her face.
"What's his problem?"
"You slept with Michael. He's pretty pissed."
"They aren't in a relationship...," Raphael quickly added, "Michael wanted it. Michael wanted it just as bad as I did."
"Michael's telling him something else. He's saying that he thought you were Uri..." Gabriel replied
Raphael shook his head. He hardly remembered last night. He remembered finding Ariel's liquor cabinet. He remembered Gabriel coming into his room and telling him that now would be the best time for him to go make his move on Michael. So he did it. He decided he would go make his move. Even with his mind fighting off Michael...his body was so ready.
"Michael's lying," Raphael stated.
"That's what I was trying to tell Uriel."
"Where's Michael? I'll go talk to him---"
"He went out. He went out with Chamuel and Ariel. He was really upset this morning about last night so they took him out. Don't ask me. I don't know when everyone started to become so goddam supportive of Michael."
"I need to talk to him."
"He'll be back later. We are going to have a meeting. Ariel has some information she wants to share about Leviathan at dinner. Maybe you can talk to him then. I'd be more worried about Uri getting to him first though. Uri seems like he feels bad."
His heart was racing. He didn't understand it. He could feel his heart racing. All of yesterday was just like a blur to him but he wouldn't take it back. Yesterday had changed everything. Everything.
"I think Uri is in love with Michael..." Gabriel replied.
That was all he needed to hear. It had tossed Raphael over the edge before he knew about it. He turned around at that moment and started to walk into the next room.
"Where are you going?" Gabriel asked.
Raphael didn't respond to her. He was beyond pissed. He saw her walking after him as though trying to stop him but he couldn't stop himself.
Raphael found himself walking out into the front garden area. The door he left out of was lead tot eh garden. Access to the house and garden area was through imposing large wooden entrance gates. Raphael found Uriel standing there in a secluded and very pretty private courtyard, with garden and a beautiful Moroccan-style swimming pool. Raphael was staring out drinking something staring out the skies and seeming to be absorbing the mountain air as it whisked over the secluded mountain home.
"Are you really going to act like a fucking brat about this?" was what came out of Raphael's mouth as Uri glanced thoughtlessly at the distant mountain.
Gabriel attempted to grab him but Raphael managed to get away from her grasp despite her inhuman strength. Uriel's eyes aligned with Raphael. Raphael expected more of a challenge but instead there was this weakness.
"You have a point to this?"
"My point is I've never had any problem with you. I don't want to start now. So let's put this on the table. Me and Michael had sex last night. That's what happened. Now you're turn. What's your attitude about?"
He had attempted to sound as blunt as possible. He could tell this was making Uriel uncomfortable. This was probably making Gabriel uncomfortable too. Clearly Gabriel had her little crush on Uriel and this love triangle thing that was going on between all of them seemed to be done in the shadows. Raphael was tired of the shadows. It was time to bring it to light.
"You knew how I felt about him. That's all I'm saying," Uriel replied.
"He chose me."
"That's not what he said. He said yesterday that it was all a mistake."
"You can't believe that," Gabriel told Uriel, "With Michael's track record. You can't believe that..."
Raphael knew that before yesterday he would have been the first to warn someone about Michael. Last night had changed everything though. Fighting it was pointless now. This hate that he had for Michael had transformed into something else. It had revealed itself as something more.
For the first time in his miserable life Raphael felt like Michael was something that he could have. He felt like Michael was something that he could own. He never owned anything. He had grown up a sewer rat, living in homeless shelters and struggling in street corners to survive. Finally this was something that was his...just for him.
Uriel shook his head, "I'm not going to discuss my relationship with Michael with the two of you. You both clearly aren't a fan of him. You never have been. I just need time to clear my mind."
"Relationship? You are planning on having a relationship with Michael?" Raphael asked.
"That's between me and Michael. If I calm down and decide maybe this was a miscommunication then maybe I'll believe him. I'm closer to him than I am with anyone in this shit. So who knows? I just need to calm down. I just need time to clear my head and talk to Michael. Regardless. That's between me and Michael. My beef with you ----Raphael--- is that you acted like hated him but are trying to have sex with him every chance you get. So no. I won't believe you."
Raphael looked over at Uriel. He couldn't believe it. Uriel was already turning down. Just hours ago Raphael was balls deep in Michael. Uriel must have saw the passion between them. Yet somehow he was still planning on making a move on Michael.
Gabriel shook her head, "I thought you were stronger than this Uri...I honestly did."
"Right. Michael's just trying to spare your feelings," Raphael stated.
He was desperate. He finally found something...just for him. He couldn't let Uri get it. These people were rich and never needed anything in life. None of them were like Raphael. Raphael had to struggle and fight for everything in his life. Nothing came easy to him.
There was no way that he was going to let Uriel and Michael get back together.
"What are you saying?" Uriel asked.
"Tell him Raphael---tell him that Michael is lying," Gabriel stated.
Raphael wouldn't let Uri, who had everything he needed, get Michael too. Raphael was just as strong. He was just as handsome.
"He knew it was me," Raphael stated.
Necessity was the mother of invention. After last night, Raphael needed Michael.
"I don't have time for this," Uriel stated walking away.
Raphael wasn't going to let him walk away. He wasn't going to let him get away that easy. He found himself grabbing onto Uriel. He swung Uri around.
"He looked at me. He was looking into my eyes. He was screaming my name," Raphael told him.
"You're fucking lying," Uriel told him.
Raphael knew it was nothing but lies. It didn't matter now though.
The two faced each other down though. Even if it wasn't true it might as well have been for Raphael. The connection that Raphael and Michael had in that bedroom had to be right. Nothing wrong could have felt so good. There was no way in hell he was going to be a loser. All his life he'd lost.
Gabriel must have known too but that didn't stop her from joining him, "I heard him. I heard Michael screaming Raphael's name."
Gabriel must have had her own motivations for backing him up. Raphael was sure of it. Gabriel wasn't his concern though. Not anymore at least. Whatever she wanted didn't matter to him.
"You might want to get off of me," Uriel warned.
Flames. There were flames everywhere around Uriel now. The anger was legitimate. The threat was legitimate as well. Uriel's flames swirled around his body threatening to engulf Raphael to embers if he didn't move back. Raphael didn't let go though. He held onto Uriel. He held onto him hard with his hands.
Something else was there in Raphael. Something that wasn't there before. As Raphael held onto Uriel he realized that all the energy he once used to heal someone with a touch could also be used in another way. It just came to him.
It started as a flicker. Then Uriel's bright flame slowly started to dim.
"Raphael...what's going on..." Gabriel asked.
Raphael didn't answer her. He wasn't sure what was going on either. In the same way he was once able to heal now he was able to disrupt. The flames of Uriel lowered by Raphael's touch until there was nothing more than a spark. And he held on...sucking more and more energy out of Uriel. He could see Uriel's eyes turning inside the back of his head.
Uriel soon started to spin around and fell over...laying still and almost lifeless on the floor.
Gabriel walked up to Raphael, "Holy shit...what have you done."
Raphael wasn't sure what he'd done but as he looked down he knew that he had figured out a way that he wasn't just the healer anymore. He wasn't just their sidekick.
He replied coldly and bluntly, "I just didn't want to be a loser anymore."
We were headed back to the house in Ariel's truck. I sat in the back seat. The two had been talking about nonsensical stuff the whole time. They'd taken me out of the house when things got heated between Uri and I earlier this morning. I couldn't sleep. Uri had actually been screaming at me all morning. He kept telling me to "stay away from him" or what not. It was Cham's idea that we leave the house for a while and give him a chance to calm down.
"So I put something on my instragram about Raguel's death."
"You have Instagram?" Ariel asked him.
She was going pretty fast. I wasn't a huge fan of Ariel to be honest. I mean she had tried to kill me, been in a relationship with a demon and gave the boy I was interested with head. I don't know if her taking me shopping today was her attempt to try to make up for some of this stuff. I had taken advantage of it, buying clothes and what not. It didn't help though. My mind was still stuck on Uri. I couldn't get him out of my head.
"I got a lot of followers. Of course no one knew who Rag was. Still I think it's important, you know? Don't you ever wonder. What if we all die tomorrow? No one will know why we died. No one will know that we are some defenders."
"God will know," Ariel stated.
"I guess that's ok too," Cham replied to her, `What do you think Michael?"
"Is it enough to fight knowing that we probably won't get any recognition for it...at least on earth?" Cham asked.
I shrugged, "I don't need any recognition."
I looked outside the window. The last thing I wanted to be doing was talking about this shit. I couldn't get Uri off my mind. I knew I was being anti-social especially when I looked outside of the window as Cham attempted to make me join the conversation.
"You have to have some kind of opinion though in the matter."
"Look, Cham. I don't give a fuck."
"Then why are you here."
I shrugged shaking my head. I had thought about it. I didn't know why I stuck around. Maybe its because Ariel actually had a good secluded home in the mountains. The cops were still looking for me because of my mother's death. They were still looking for me in order to arrest me because I had been framed for it. I had no life to go back to. I had nowhere to go from here.
"He's here for Uri," Ariel replied.
Cham's reply to that was a laugh. I couldn't help but to look over at Ariel. She was way out of line. If she thought taking me out of the house, calming me down and letting me use her credit card made a difference in all the things she'd done she was wrong.
"You don't know about my relationship with Uri."
"I know he loves you and you love him," Ariel replied, "I know me and Uri had that...moment of weakness but trust me he cares about you. I can't take back all the thing's I've done but---"
"But nothing. You can't take them back. Leave it at that," I replied.
Cham took this as a chance to butt in, "Everything happens for a reason. There is fate in all things, you know. Cheer up...Michael. It's ok to care for him and it's ok to feel you've done wrong. You weren't born perfect. You know? Everything happens for a reason and if the stars align I do think you and Uri will be just fine. I think he knows you're learning. All angels have to earn their halos."
Halos. I shook my head at the thought. A guy like me was more likely to grow horns than a halo. Still, that cold in my heart was melting and it was all because of Uri. Maybe what Cham was saying did have some legitimacy to it.
I looked in my bag. I had used Ariel's card to buy Uriel a card. It was a simple card that just said...Sorry in it. It was one word but it was the most powerful thing I'd ever seen in my life.
Mind you I wasn't the type to ever get emotional, let alone buy a guy a gift. I didn't know why I was saying sorry for. Was I apologizing for the mistake that I made last night by not noticing who I was having sex with in the darkness or was I apologizing for the mistakes I've made in the past. Maybe I was just apologizing for being myself.
Still maybe there was a halo for me out there somewhere.
We got to the house and as we walked in I noticed Cham's face twisting up. It made me nervous when his face twisted up because I got this odd feeling as well. It must have been a the third eye that I had. It wasn't as strong as Cham's of course but I did feel something was wrong in the house. Something was off. The energy in the house seemed to be misplaced.
As we got into the dining room I saw her...Gabriel. She had Michael in her arms. She was holding him. Michael looked a little pale. He was awake though. He seemed to be getting comforted by Gabriel in the most intimate way possible.
It seemed as though if we didn't walk into the room at that moment they would have started kissing.
"What's going on here?" Cham asked.
Uri just looked at me as though not knowing what to say. It was Raphael who walked into the room at that moment as though he was being summoned. Things got awkward. Uri, Raphael and me in the same room at the same time was beyond awkward but having Gabriel sitting there basically petting Uri like a wounded dog was too much.
"Uri and I got into a little disagreement earlier," Raphael stated.
Ariel raised her eyebrows in disbelief, "And Uri is the one who looks down and out? Am I the only one a little confused by this?"
Ariel was right. She may have not been my favorite person in the world but I could understand a lot of the things she said. I could relate. She seemed in disbelief like me. Raphael had gotten into a fight with Uriel and he didn't have burn marks all over his body? Was I missing something?
"I think I have a new power," Raphael stated.
"I feel it..." Cham stated, "I see it actually all around you."
"Usually when I touch people I can give them energy. Their body can use that energy to heal itself. However it seems like I am also able to take energy. Some sort of energy dampening. It completely negated his powers and then started to negate his own power."
I could feel anger all of a sudden. I had no idea what they were arguing about but I didn't care. Before I knew it I had Raphael pressed up against the nearest wall with my arm clutching onto his throat. I didn't know what came over me but I was angry. It seemed like a flood gate from the heavens opened and angels poured out.
Shit was flying around the room everywhere.
"You hurt Uri!"
The anger I carried seemed to devastate him however Raphael put his hand on me around waist and all that anger that I had slowly...but surely started to go away. The vengeful invisible cherubim seemed to go away with them. Soon I found myself mild...calm as if about to go into a deep sleep.
I stepped away from Raphael lost and confused.
"I didn't mean to go so far. I am learning to control it. It's new to me however," Raphael replied, "But I'm not as passive as before..."
He was saying this as though making it seem like he was somehow more powerful than the rest of us. I wondered if this could possibly be true. With all the abilities we had, did it matter if one touch from Raphael and we were back to regular?
"It's ok," Gabriel stated, "Uriel's fine. I got him..."
Almost immediately my anger came back. It came back so fast that I had to go to the other end of the room and take a seat. Gabriel was holding onto Uri as she said what she said. She was playing through his goddam hair and he let her.
"This is good news," Cham stated, "It feels like Raphael just found out he was more powerful than he thought he was. Maybe the rest of us can learn to use our abilities different as well."
"Maybe I can control humans," Ariel stated.
I didn't know if she was trying to lighten the mood or not. The only person that laughed was Cham but that wasn't saying much because Cham laughed at almost everything.
Uriel ignored her and seemed to be sitting up on his own, "We need to take this serious. We can't hide out in this mansion forever. We need to face Leviathan. You said you had something to tell us Ariel. Now would be the time."
"I know where he is," Ariel replied.
We all looked at her. This was really important. If she knew where he was then we could confront him. If we could confront him then I could finally have my revenge. He killed my mother and he would pay for it. I knew that much. I wouldn't be letting him get away with this.
"Where?" I asked her.
"A place in the woods. I can take you."
"We should trust you?" Gabriel asked.
"I'll take the risk. Take me. You guys can sit in here and I'll go end Leviathan."
"You aren't going over there," Uri stated almost immediately to me with the hardest look, "We saw what happened the last time we went up against Leviathan. Look. If we can get stronger than maybe we all need some time to prepare."
"He killed my mother."
"I'll go with you," Raphael stated almost immediately.
It was very random that Raphael of all people. The closeted, self-hating, overly religious hypocrite was the one jumping to my aid. He looked over at me with these brave eyes that I had never seen before. Maybe his new abilities was making him think he had an S on his chest. I didn't really care.
"So what...you and your boyfriend just going to take the circus animal trainer and think you'll fair well?" Uriel asked.
I didn't know if he was upset with just me but calling Ariel a circus trainer was ridiculous. Then he actually called Raphael my boyfriend? I could tell Uriel was taking stabs at me. It didn't matter though. Whatever personal issues I had with Uriel could wait. Right now I needed to go find him.
"Fine. Let's go," I stated looking over at Ariel, "Now."
"We need time," Uriel replied, "Weeks to train and master our abilities. Maybe even months."
"We don't have time," I told him.
Cham looked over at us and nodded, "I have to agree with Michael. Rag always wanted Michael to be the leader Uri. As much as I respect you I have to follow Rag's wishes. Something is coming. I can see it in my 3rd eye. I believe it is one more of Hell's generals. We need to get rid of Leviathan before it comes or else we won't stand a chance."
"What about you Gabriel?" I asked, "Are you going to be the bitch I thought you were or are you going to stay here with Uri?"
"I go where Uri goes," she stated.
Interesting. They might as well have just admitted they were in a relationship by this point. I could feel the heaviness in my heart. I cared. I wanted to show I cared but this my chance to get back at the man who killed my mother. This was my chance to fight the Bull. I wasn't going to let that go.
"Fine," I stated.
I found myself walking over to Uri. I handed him the card.
"Open it when I leave."
As I walked away Uri got up to his feet. He clearly wasn't 100 percent himself but he still managed to get to his feet.
"You're going to die if you fight Leviathan now. You're not strong enough. None of you are. Please. Stay. Don't do this..."
"What do I have to live for? Are you going to give me a reason to live?" I asked him at that moment with the sharpest eyes I could give him, "Huh, Uri? You want me to stay with you...instead of Gabriel?"
I don't know why I asked that question. I was so blunt. I was so blunt that I could feel my heart racing. A part of me was hoping that he said yes. A part of me was hoping that he begged me to stay with him. A part of me wanted him to send Gabby away so that I could stroke his head and caress him.
I finally wanted all the things that he used to want from me and I was putting it all on the table in front of everyone to get it.
Uri shook his head, "No."
He made his choice. He preferred the company of Gabriel. Maybe this was for the best then. Maybe I was finally freeing Uri of me. Maybe our emotion wasn't worth him fighting for any longer. He didn't have that longing in his eyes like he always did. Something had changed. Maybe it was Gabriel getting to him. Maybe it was Gabriel stroking his hair and making him feel good about himself. Either way I knew that I had lost Uri forever.
I could have cried at that moment but I didn't. I had to stay strong. Tonight would be the biggest night of my life and I'd the only crying I'd be doing was a war cry.
I looked at the others. The others willing to follow me at least, "Get dressed. By night fall we are going to send Leviathan back to Hell or we are going to die trying."