An Angel's Mark

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The Truth Is Never Simple

Constance Lee woke up to find her head resting on the lap of a rather noble looking man with ethereal silver eyes. If she hadn’t been so disorientated she would have probably taken in much more of his striking constitution. All she could focus on were his graceful and kind eyes.

As she positioned herself in order to sit up, he moved back allowing her to do so. It was only then that it all came rushing back to her.

She couldn’t believe she had been so stupid.

The Doctors at Korle-Bu Hospital had diagnosed her colorectal cancer many months prior to this event. It was something she had kept to herself and had very effectively hidden from her niece. Initially the prognosis had been very good and it seemed that the disease had been caught in plenty of time. Whilst Mae had been visiting their family in China during the Summer she had undergone surgery in order to remove all the polyps from her gut.

However at the start of the new school term she had started to feel intense nausea and pain in her abdomen, only to later find out that her worst fears had been confirmed. The polyps had started to grow back with a vengeance and this time at a much faster rate than before. Now the chemotherapy treatment being applied was much more aggressive and in the recent weeks she had been suffering more and more prominent side effects.

She knew that she would have to come clean to Mae soon but in doing so it would make the whole situation more real and much more scary. They only had each other and she saw no point in revealing the news to her family back in China. They had never cared to contact her before and she would not spend her last moments on Earth with people who only did so out of obligation and pity. She also worried that if she told her niece she would sacrifice her further education to stay at home and look after her. In fact she knew she would and that was not in the least bit acceptable to the older women.

However it seemed that she would not have to reveal her secret today. She would pass it off as stress due to overworking herself at the start of the new term in preparation for her new classes. Even though it couldn’t be denied that the air was thick with suspicion, it obviously wasn’t directed at her.

The landscape around her was clearly divided with seven familiar young women standing to her right whilst seven young men stood a few steps away from her to the right. They too had a range of unique rather dystopian eyes colours that seemed rather supernatural. A Ghanaian gentleman also stood at ease behind the silver eyed man, his eyes flickering around the scene. He was a wall of a man without an inch of fat and packed with muscle. Constance noted his dominant presence and protective nature.

“Are you all right Aunty?” Mae asked her eyes filled with worry and concern. The fear in her eyes notified Constance of the fact that Mae probably wasn’t ready to hear the truth yet but it didn’t make it any easier to lie to her. Their relationship was one founded on deep and profound trust and honesty. Though she was trying to protect her, Constance dreaded the day when she would have to tell Mae the truth. She couldn’t confidently tell if her niece would ever forgive her for keeping this from her.

“Of course Mae” She said nodding. Though doubtful most of her spectators looked convinced probably attributing her fainting spell to overworking and overexertion. However both the yellow-eyed teen and the silver-eyed gentleman looked unconvinced. However she wasn’t sure why, they couldn’t possibly know the truth. Could they?

Once the girls had sufficiently fussed over her and helped her sit on a bench. Constance started to relax, knowing that she would face no further scrutiny concerning the reasons for her fainting spell behind the wheel. Now other thoughts crossed her mind. How was she saved in the first place? Though her memories were a bit jumbled she clearly remembered being alone in the car and heading straight for the centre of the roundabout at a frightening speed. Everyone in front of her now had been too far away to do anything. It wasn’t humanly possible to have reached her in a matter of seconds. Yet here she was unharmed (with the exception of the cancer she was already suffering from).

“Now that we know Ms Lee is OK. I want to know what the hell is going on here” Celeste stated matter of factly causing Daniel to wince at her tone. She was subsequently supported by choruses of agreement from the mouths of the other girls and even Constance found herself verbally agreeing with the younger woman too.

“Before we do anything let me introduce myself to the lovely Ms Lee here. I am Afriel and this is my driver Kwame. I am the guardian of the seven young men you see in front of you: Daniel, Sablo, Archon, Nathaniel, Micah, Ramiel and Michael.” As he introduced everyone to her including himself they each made their way over to her and shook her hand. It struck her how respectful they all were but she wouldn’t let his masterful charm dissuade them from finding out the truth. She was an English teacher for goodness sake, she was the last person that should be distracted by pretty words. That said she did also have a soft spot for the classic kind of gentleman of the past whose presence was now only kept alive in the literacy novels she loved to read.

“Right now that all the introductions have been made, I must agree with young Celeste here. I won’t beat around the bush as I feel direct questions lead to the most direct answers. How did you save me?” Constance asked.

“I appreciate your candour Ms Lee, I really do but I am sure you of all people know that the truth is never quite that simple. The boys and I are happy to answer your questions but I am not sure you will believe what we have to say and we can’t reveal these answers here either way. You must come to our house where we are safe from prying eyes.” Afriel retorted.

The young men all had expressions that were a combination of shock and relief. Whilst the girls all looked to the English teacher for guidance as to what to do next. She was the adult among them and it was a rather peculiar situation since Constance had never met any of the men around her in person before. She was however sure the Mae had mentioned them more the once, with the exception of Afriel and Kwame. It seemed to be hard to believe that Afriel could pose a danger to them when he was able to raise such wonderful young men. Mae didn’t realise it but she also talked a lot more about one boy in particular. Young Micah seemed to be a highlight of her day alongside her coursework and if she didn’t know any better she would have suggested that her niece had developed quite a crush.

“Ok we will follow you to your house but we can’t stay long as we all have an early start tomorrow” Constance replied, her role as a responsible teacher quickly coming out.

“I refuse to let you drive in your condition Ms Lee. Kwame will drive your car to our house. Whilst I drive the boys and Adele can follow along with the rest of the girls. Then he will drop yourself, Geneva and Mae off at home after our discussions and then take a taxi back to our house. Adele can then drop of the rest of the girls off home” Afriel replied and his rather smug expression highlighted the fact that he knew he couldn’t be argued with. Though it was a rather long winded, his plan worked out with everyone being dropped off by people who lived in the area. As Geneva lived nearer the outskirts of Accra down the road from Constance and Mae. Whilst the rest of the girls all lived only a few roads away from the school. What unsettled Constance was how all knowing Afriel seemed to be not just of their living arrangements but of her health too. It was like he could tell that she had cancer.

Once it was settled everyone made their way to the respective transportation. The boys all loaded into the van with Afriel at the wheel. Whilst Kwame squished into the drivers seat of Constance’s Honda Civic he looked entirely ridiculous but made no complaints about the situation. Constance sat in the front passengers seat, with Geneva and Mae sat in the back. Whilst Adele sat in her Golf with Lilian sat shot gun, whilst Faye, Celeste and Cora sat in the back seat.

They waited for Afriel to drive off first and then followed closely behind him. The closer they got to the house the more their anticipation built. If they could have been able to see the thought clouds projecting from each other’s minds they wouldn’t have been able to stop laughing.They were thinking of all the possible explanations, perhaps they were vampires or werewolves like the ones in twilight or even superheroes like the ones found in comics. Not once did the word angel cross any of their minds.

They were in for a huge surprise.

After about 30 minutes they finally turned into the street that Afriel and his wards lived on. He blared the horn and the gates opened soon after that. Afriel parked the van in the garage whilst Kwame quickly parked Constance’s car in a corner of the spacious drive way. Leaving a lot of room for Adele to park easily and once she had she seen Kwame open the door for Constance and her niece. Then he quickly went to relieve the house boy of his duties and Adele noted the generous exchange of Ghana Cedis between the Driver and the younger boy.

Afriel then quickly rushed them into the house offering them refreshments which they all quickly declined. Now was not a time for distractions it was a time for truth.

They all sat themselves comfortably in the living room and Kwame quickly joined them standing by the door at ease once again. To the girls he seemed much more like a bodyguard than a driver.

“Right. If you don’t mind me asking. How many of you consider yourselves to be Christians?” Afriel asked.

All the women looked at him with the most irritated expressions possible as his question seemed to have no relevance at all to their current situation. What did religion have do to with Micah’s ability to control trees and Sablo’s ability to teleport. Obviously this was some kind of wizardry or they had been bitten by some kind of radioactive spider.

Afriel replied with an equally intense expression that screamed “just go with it” and so they did. After all he supposedly had all the answers to their questions.

Celeste raised her hand and confirmed that she was the only person in the room that considered herself a Christian.

“What if I told you that everything that Christians believe in is true” Afriel questioned

“I would say prove it” Geneva replied sassily and the others agreed.

“Afriel I think it would be better if we take over from here.” Archon suggested much to the confusion of the others.

“I think you are right. Constance would you do me the honour of providing me with some company and letting me explain things to you myself.” Afriel suggested

Even though she was hesitant to leave the girls alone with the young boys she knew they were together. Besides there was something about those silver eyes that she just couldn’t seem to resist.

Once the two adults had left the room the boys confirmed whether it was proof that the girls wanted and they vehemently said yes. Prepared for any and everything, except what they eventually saw.

For the young Nephilim as they unveiled their wings each of the eyes shone even brighter. It was a sign of them existing in truest and most pure form. Soft white feathers spread across the room shrouding the girls in the most brilliant white.

“Angels. You are literally angels. I mean you all look like angels but you are actually angels. That explains why you are so nice and polite.” Lillian waffled excitedly. Her reaction was by far the most pure and childlike.

“What are these made of?” Mae questioned gently running her fingers across Micah’s wings after asking him repeatedly if she could do so.

At this point the girls had all stood up and were walking in between each of the newly revealed Nephilim as if they were features in some modern art gallery. Questions were being asked at a much faster rate than the young angels could answer them but they were doing the best to satisfy each young woman’s unique line of questioning.

“How old are you all then?” Faye asked. It had only just hit her that angels probably didn’t age in the same way that humans did. She was rather shocked to learn that 1 human year equated to 1,000 angel years but she guessed in a weird way it made sense.

Cora on the other hand had stood in awe of them for a rather long time. Her focus had moved from the wings to their eye colours which obviously had a much more meaning now that they had revealed their true nature.

“I am guessing you eye colours aren’t just God’s way of adding diversity to Heaven then?” Cora asked and the chuckles she received in response let her know that she was right.

Adele on the other hand was much more interested in their upbringing. She wanted to know how angels were born and raised. The boys had greatly enjoyed sharing anecdotes with her about their time as cherubs with Afriel. It blew her mind that one Angel could be in charge of the whole future of angel kind.

“What I don’t understand is what you are doing here?” Geneva questioned bringing them all crashing back to reality as a frown deepened in her forehead.

“Yes, You must be here for a reason. God doesn’t make mistakes and I don’t believe that he would just send some of his angels down from Heaven for fun” Celeste added

“You might want to take a seat now. We have a lot of explaining to do” Daniel sighed. Their momentary bliss had come to an end, now they had to focus on the mission.

That was if the girls accepted the call at all.

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