Book of the Fallen: Nathanial's Folly Chp 5 and 6
Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both…
Robert Frost, The Road Not Taken
The border between Poland and Germany
World War II, 1944
The Soviet Red Army had pushed the Germans back to their own borders. Through out the whole of Poland they had come to witness the atrocities that Hitler and his “Final Solution” had wrought. Harden veterans who had seen the worst fighting of the war had their stomachs turned when they saw the horror of the Warsaw Ghetto or the ovens at Auschwitz. Some were even more horrified by the lack of aid that high command refused to give the Polish freedom fighters feeling it would be better after the war to have Poland as a Communist State rather then help the former government back to power. All of these concerns seemed hundreds of miles away from Piotr Andropov’s mind as he and his division waited on the banks of the OderRiver.
The first few divisions had moved across the river and into Germany, but Piotr’s division had orders to move into the town ahead and make sure it was clear. Some of his squad mates had complained since they felt they had been robbed of the chance to be among the first to invade Germany, but he didn’t care. Since leaving his home in the Ukraine he had seen very little of the war. He had been at Stalingrad but only after the Germans had surrendered. He had seen some action but it had been sparse usually coming after major battles when the risk was small. He had even managed to get through Poland without seeing any of the horrible things that others were talking about without pause. No to his mind a nice leisurely clearing of a bombed out town would suit him just fine.
The first few streets had proved to be uneventful; the houses lining them were empty shells really. Piotr and his squad had been assigned a particularly uninviting set of streets. Most of the section that they had been assigned to check had collapsed houses and businesses blocking it. He and his friend Slava had taken a right down what they thought was a deserted alley only to come across a young man huddled over something in the middle of the far end. As they got closer, they noticed he had on the uniform of a member of the Waffen SS, a major by the look of the insignia.
“Stop where you are” he said as Slava moved around to one side of him, keeping his rifle pointed at his head. The major turned his head and looked at them. For the first time since he was forced to join the army Piotr felt fear, there was no way to describe what he saw. The officer’s face was covered in blood, his hands digging inside of a freshly killed soldier, one of theirs possibly. He had a wild inhuman look to his eyes as he just stared at them, not moving or uttering a word. His mouth opened and he seemed to growl, sharpened teeth covered in blood and flesh clearly visible.
“Shoot him Piotr, shoot him”
Slava’s shout broke his trance and he brought his rifle back up and pulled the trigger. The shot rang off the cobble stone as the major or whatever it was howled and ran across the open street beyond and into the next alley.
“After him! Don’t let him get away!” they ran after him, several of their squad mates joining in the chase.
“What was it?”
“Some Nazi major, gone crazy I think”
“Which way did he go?”
“To the right I think, Slava which way?”
“You two sure it wasn’t a giant rat?” that got a laugh. Somewhere in all the hustle Piotr found himself separated from the others. He heard shouting up ahead and decided to follow that until he found his unit that was until he heard something off to his left. He entered a bombed out house and looked around, nothing but an old cupboard and a broken table. Just as he was about to leave he heard it again this time from the back of the house. He moved to the rear door and looked out into the darkened alley beyond. He heard muffled voices coming from just down the alley and moved to see if members of his squad had caught the officer. When he got there, he saw the officer all right but it wasn’t his squad mates that had him. The light of the full moon glinted off a sword that pinned the officer to the alley wall and a tall man in strange clothes stood near by. What happened next would change Piotr for the rest of his life.
As he stood there silently he watched the man grab the sword and split the officer in half from belly to head, the two sides sliding sickly down the wall. From the body rose something black and horrifying, it made ever fiber of Piotr’s body quake with fear. It looked like everything his Ompa had told him would steal his soul if he didn’t say his prayers at night. It was like some fairy tale creature come to life right down to the red glowing eyes which seemed to pierce his very soul. The creature let out an unearthly yell and moved toward where he stood. He opened his mouth to scream but the sounds never came. Then in a flash of intense light, the strange man was there. He swung his sword at the creature. It seemed to swell up for a moment and then it shrank finally flaring up in a brilliant flash of fire illuminating the night. Piotr screamed, he screamed until he thought his voice would give out and then only darkness.
They found him lying in a pool of his own urine mumbling about demons and creatures and split open corpses. He was sent to the field hospital and from there to regional HQ for a psychiatric evaluation. He was there for two days and then in the middle of the night he ran off into the Polish countryside.
New York, NYUMedicalCenter
Her sleep was troubled by images of dark figures and shadowy monsters. Then came the face that she couldn’t forget, the face with those deep blue eyes. Every time the images seemed like they would overwhelm her, he was there whispering to her, telling her to sleep. He would say they are nothing but shadows, which she had no reason to fear. Always when he was there, she felt complete and at peace, but when he was gone she felt alone and empty as though the most important part of her was missing. She could feel the touch of his hand in hers and the warmth as he touched her face. Every time he began to fade away from sight, she would cry for him to wait.
“Tell me your name at least”
“You already know my name Samantha”
Her eyes fluttered as she tried to adjust to the light in the room. The steady beat of a heart monitor pulsing beside the bed, and the low glow of an overhead light above her. Where was she? How did she get here? It slowly came back to her as her eyes adjusted to faint light in the room. She had been attacked, this was a hospital. Someone stirred in the far corner of the room, her eyes still trying to find some focus with in the shadows.
An older sounding voice chuckled and answered her back “No I am afraid not my dear”
“Where am I?”
“You are in a private room at the university medical center; you have been mostly unconscious for three days. More then that I think I should let your doctor tell you. If you excuse me I will let the nurse know that you are awake.”
“Wait! What? I mean mostly.” Her head was spinning and she felt dizzy and sick she closed her eyes again.
“Just rest my dear all your questions will be answered in time”
She barely heard him; to be honest she never even saw a face or body to go with the voice. The spinning had lessened with her eyes closed but she still felt nauseous. She tried to shift on the bed and found that every inch of her body hurt. Somewhere in the middle of trying not to throw up and remain perfectly still she passed out again. When she came to again there was a little more light and a man in blue scrubs, her doctor she assumed, and a nurse hovering over her checking her vitals.
“Hello there Miss Parker. We thought you had woken up for good there last night but apparently you felt like sleeping some more. I’m Doctor Anderson and this is Nurse Watkins we have been taking care of you.” She looked over at the blonde nurse who was checking an IV on the right side of her bed, the steady pulse of the heart monitor still audible in the background.
“You have three broken ribs, a small fracture in your forearm, some nasty cuts and abrasions and what I would technically call one whopper of a concussion. We did a CT scan and an MRI, there was some unusual brain activity but nothing to be alarmed at. We were mostly worried that you would slip into a coma but as long as you seemed to be in and out of consciousness we felt there was little danger in that. Can you lean forward any?”
She struggled to talk her mouth was dry and she didn’t trust herself to articulate the words. She swallowed and then answered in a hoarse whisper.
“Not without feeling dizzy and lots of pain”
From the far corner of the room came the same dry chuckle, she tried to see who it was but the doctor was blocking her view.
“Can I have some water?”
“Of course you can dear just a minute and I’ll get you some.”
Great she had a little twenty something, skinny as a rail, blonde nurse treating her like she was an old lady, apparently the fun just didn’t stop coming in her life. First she lost her job, and then got beat up by perfect strangers, and now she had bambi the wonder bimbo as a nurse. Maybe this was somebody’s way of telling her she should reevaluate her life. Her doctor had been droning on but she hadn’t been listening.
“I’m sorry” she managed to get out “what were you saying?” bringing her attention back to the doctor. Nurse Watkins placed a plastic straw between her lips and Samantha drank deeply.
“Not so fast dear”
She slowed down forcing herself to take small sips; she noticed the nametag on the nurse shoulder. Barbra; great even her name seemed annoying.
“I said we would like to keep you for a few days and make sure that everything is ok before letting you go home. Just to make sure that the dizziness has gone away and that the concussion doesn’t have any lasting effects.”
She let the straw go and looked at the young doctor. She was sure that to a lot of people, the blonde bimbo next to her being one of them, he was handsome and charming, but for some reason she just found the both of them tiresome and wished they would just go away.
“Two maybe three days at the most, by then if you are having any lingering effects like headaches, blurred vision that sort of thing we will know more about what we are dealing with.”
“Nothing to worry yourself about at this moment, I am confident that in two days you will be perfectly able to return to your life.”
“Thank you doctor” as she said it she leaned back and closed her eyes. If it was nothing to worry about then why did he bring it up? God she hated dealing with people sometimes, give her a nice quiet library with its dusty old books any day.
“Well why don’t I let you get some rest, I will check in on you later this morning ok. In the mean time, Nurse Watkins will get you something for the pain. I will see you later Miss Parker.”
“Good bye doctor.”
“I will be right back with those meds dear, and maybe a little something to eat.”
She only nodded thinking to herself yeah food to fatten me up no doubt. Wouldn’t want me to be a skin and bones before they cut me open to see if I am crazy. She listened to the sounds of Nurse Watkins shoes on the floor as she walked away, the noise getting fainter and fainter.
“Finally” she said
Again came that dry chuckling “I take it you didn’t care too much for those two either?”
She opened her eyes to get a look at the face that went with the voice finally. Sitting in the corner of the room was an old man, his hands resting on an intricately craved wooden cane. She couldn’t make out very many details about him since he sitting in the darkest corner of the room and the sunlight from the open window made the shadows deeper there.
“I found the evening nurses much more agreeable myself.”
“I’m sorry do I know you?”
“No, no you don’t. Let’s just say I am a concerned citizen who heard what happened to you and thought I would look in on you. Make sure you where ok.”
“You have been here for the three days I was out of it?”
He chuckled again, it was infectious and she found herself smiling too.
“I’m sorry I don’t mean to laugh it is just that is an apt way to put it. Out of it indeed.” He laughed again, “No Miss Parker I have been here off and on for the last four days now, more on then off, and when I wasn’t I had friends keeping an eye on you.”
“Please call me Samantha or Sam if you want.”
“Alright Samantha, you mentioned a name last night Josua I think it was. An unusual name that one; a husband or boyfriend perhaps?”
“I’m not married and I don’t have anyone I am dating right now. It was just something I heard somewhere I am sure.” Something inside her made her not want to talk about that intensely personal moment she shared with the strange man the night of the attack.
“Oh well never mind I was only curious” he chuckled to himself again “I do have something more pressing to talk to you about though. When you were being brought in and for that matter during the last three days, you have been mumbling certain things in your sleep. Things I am sure that the detectives who have been waiting to talk to you will ask about. Before that happens I wanted to talk to you first.”
At that he got up and slid his chair closer to her bed, for the first time Samantha got a good look at him. The thing that struck her the most was the stiff black and white collar he wore around his neck. She had been talking to a priest, what was this some kind of impromptu inquisition. Before she could answer him nurse bimbo came back with her meds and a tray of food.
“Only a few more minutes’ father then she needs her rest.”
“Yes of course my dear I won’t be too much longer I promise.”
“If he gives you any trouble dear you just push the button and I’ll get rid of him in a hurry,” he laughed at her and Samantha only nodded.
She walked to the door and turned back and said, “I mean it father, only a few more minutes.”
“Yes, yes I will be gone long before then, long before then,” that seemed to satisfy her and she left the room. Samantha sat a little bit straighter, or as much as the pain in her ribs would allow her. She took a small sip of her water and then brushed a lock of her hair back from her face and looked the small man in the eye,
“So why does a Ukrainian priest with a Brooklyn accent want to know what I am going to tell the cops?”
“Very good Samantha, very, very good. Most people would have only said Russian.”
“No you roll your “r’s” a little bit more distinctly then Russians do and the stressing on certain syllables clearly indicates the southern half of the Ukraine. I couldn’t pin it down until the bimbo came in just now.”
“Again I am suitably impressed, but as to your question lets just say that encounters such as the one you had the other night are my hobby and while you may doubt what you think you saw I can assure you that detailing everything to the detectives will get you nowhere, except maybe a longer stay in this hospital.”
“Random muggings are your hobby?”
He gave her a sly look, “You and I both know that more took place on that street then just a mugging, but that is a story best left for another time. I need to be going before the “bimbo” as you so aptly put it decides to hang me by my collar. Not a fan of the cloth that one I’m afraid”
“Look father I don’t know what you are talking about. I got mugged and hit my head I am not sure about anything after that.”
“Very good Samantha I suggest you stick to that.” He slowly got up and started to walk to the door, “I will be in touch with you again my dear.”
“Wait father I didn’t even get your name” she liked the old man despite the bizarre turn the conversation had taken and didn’t want to him leaving without her knowing more about why he was here or at least a way to find him again.
“You can call me Father Peter, Samantha, that is what everyone else does.” Then the strange but jolly old man was gone and she could hear his cane on the floor as he walked down the hall. This was all getting too strange for her to make sense of, but try as she might she couldn’t focus enough to make sense of it. The meds finally took hold and she drifted off to sleep.
The 25th precinct, New York
He went over his notes for a third time making sure he didn’t forget anything or leave something out. Unlike most cops Flint still used old fashion files to keep track of his cases and left the computer work to his partner, it made for a little bit more work but in the end he felt he could remember the details from any particular case he was working on better that way. Not that this case had a lot of details but being sloppy just wasn’t his style. He needed something to break and break soon before this case got cold; he started going over the notes again
“You have a minute Flint?”
He turned around in his chair to find his captain standing there hands in his pockets.
“Sure Cap what’s up?”
“How’s the case going Flint?”
“I have had easier cases Cap, to tell you the truth I am really hoping that the victim will be able to give us a lead because we seem to be at a dead-end.”
“Look Flint I am sorry you got this case. I know your retirement is in a few weeks and the last thing you wanted is a case like this, but the brass downtown and the DA’s office are really pressuring this one. It doesn’t play well in the press, to have a young college professor attacked three blocks from the school. They want to be able to tell people how safe it is to walk the streets even at night. They wanted my best on the case that is why you got the job.”
“Thanks Cap, we will try to get this one wrapped up so those pencil pushers downtown can brag about it.”
“You just do your normal job and let me worry about the boys downtown. I am sure things will...”
He never got to finish the sentence because just then Paul walked up.
“Excuse me Cap didn’t mean to interrupt, but Flint our girl is awake.”
“It is ok Paul, Flint and I were just finishing up here anyway. You guys get going and Flint don’t worry about the brass I will handle them you just make sure this case doesn’t get swept under the rug.”
“Will do Cap.”
Flint grabbed his coat and followed Paul to the stairs.
“What was all that about?”
“Just the Captain telling me my retirement party might be a little late. Come on Paulie let’s go talk to this girl before she disappears to.”
Ten minutes later, they were pulling into parking garage at the university medical center. Flint took one final drag off his cigarette and threw it out the window.
“Straighten your tie Paulie and when we get in there let me do the talking, sometimes you seem to get distracted to easy.”
“Whatever you say Flint, I don’t like hospitals all that much anyways so the sooner we are done here the better.”
Flint echoed his sentiment; it did use to be that way. Hospitals never bothered him until that fateful day when some young intern had fouled up when they brought his daughter in. She had lived but it was touch and go there for a while, ever since Flint was distrustful of doctors and hospitals. As they walked towards the parking garage elevator, he absent-mindedly fingered the St. Christopher medal that was attached to his key chain. A nervous habit that he started about the same time.
“Hey earth to Flint”
“What? I’m sorry Paul what were you saying? I guess I wasn’t listening.”
“I said your pocket is ringing.”
“What my pocket, Oh my cell phone. I’ll get this Paul you go and see if she is awake. I’ll be along shortly.”
“Meet you up there Flint.”
“Ok Paul. Yeah Hello, hey Tim were you able to get anything off that sample I gave you?”
“Yeah did I Flint, but it isn’t something I want to talk about over the phone, you almost have to be here to believe it. Can you get over here anytime soon?”
“Paulie and I are about to interview our Vic. It should only take an hour maybe a little more I can try to get over there afterwards.”
“Try to make it sooner rather then later Flint.”
“Ok Tim I will do my best”
He ended the call and pushed the button for the elevator. That was a strange call, he never knew Tim to get that worked up about anything. You could hear the excitement in his voice, but also a hint of something, fear maybe. Well that would have to keep for now, he need to catch up to Paulie.
The private room of Samantha Parker, NYU Med Center, New York
He was there again she was sure of it. Her sleep wasn’t troubled this time but still he was there, she could feel him in the room with her. She was afraid if she opened her eyes he wouldn’t be there, how foolish was that.
“You are really here this time aren’t you?”
“Would it make any difference if I said yes or no?”
“Then yes I am here”
She slowly opened her eyes and looked into those blue eyes again. He was there looking exactly as he did four nights ago. Tall, dark and handsome, his blue eyes looking right at her as he stood at the side her bed, the bright light of the afternoon sun casting his shadow on the far wall. He was here all right, hallucinations didn’t have shadows. His hand slowly crept up to take hers. He smiled at her, the same smile that had made the horrors of that night fade away now made her pain less and she smiled back at him.
“Does that reassure you that I am real?”
“Yes it does, it feels good too.”
He reached up with his free hand to brush a red gold curl from her face. The touch was warm and loving; it made her feel safe like nothing she had never known. She didn’t want it to end but then his hand was gone.
“Your bruises seem to be healing well, I am sorry I didn’t get there sooner, perhaps the pain would be less now.”
“No you did enough, more then enough. It is me that should be apologizing I never got to say thank you.”
“I don’t require a thank you Samantha, just that you are alright is thanks enough.”
“There is so much I want to say, to ask you.”
“I am sorry Samantha there is not time for that, there are some detectives on their way up to talk to you. I should be gone before they get here.”
“There was a priest here earlier too; he seemed interested in what happened that night.”
He laughed then and to Samantha it was the most beautiful sound she had ever heard.
“I am sure he was.”
“Will I see you again?”
“If I say yes or no would it really matter?”
“Well..,” she looked at her feet for a moment and then blinked and when she looked back he was gone.
“Yes Josua. It would matter very much to me.” She said aloud.
“I’m sorry Miss Parker were you talking to me?”
She opened her eyes to see a man in a sport coat and tie standing at the foot of her bed, a police badge was hanging out of his pocket.
“Aren’t you a little short for a cop?”
The Lord is my shepherd...
The dream was the same. It was always the same.
He was standing in the courtyard before the gate. Sunlight streamed down and lit the whole courtyard, adding to the joy of the occasion. The war was over, Lucifer and his rebels had been cast down. Choruses of cheers went up, even those like himself who were rear guard held in reserve against the chance that the battle would go ill, were cheering as though they too had stood their place on the walls and did battle. He looked around him, no not everything was joyous the war had taken its toll. Nearly a third of heaven’s best lay dead or dying. Hundreds more wounded and in need of assistance.
A flash of sunlight caught his eye and he looked to the parapet where the archangels stood. There was Gabriel, his face a dark cloud to match his black hair and black wings. On one hip, he wore his sword on the other his trumpet. Beside him stood Aaron, the sunlight glinting off the golden helmet that had been pushed back to the top of his head his long golden hair spilling out from underneath it. His right arm pulled tight to his body by a sling and there were flecks of blood on his white wings. To one side stood Gideon, his light brown tipped wings held rigidly against his back as if his very posture was enough to stop whatever Lucifer might choose to hurl at them. Behind Gideon, looking over the courtyard and the wounded rather then out at the destruction before the gates, was Samuel the youngest. The pure white of his wings and spotlessness of his armor spoke of his innocence but the fire in his eyes told of the fight in his heart.
Amongst them all, stood Michael, one leg atop the battlement leaning on a bloody sword yet still his presence overpowered everyone that stood near him. His sandy brown hair falling into his face, the off-white of his wings, even the sad expression on his face spoke of what that day had cost them. He was the Archangel first amongst all the others yet as ever; he carried himself as a humble servant. Never once had he seen him hold his position over others, days like today had shown why that was never necessary. Command came naturally to him and everyone looked to him for guidance.
Now they gathered talking animatedly between themselves, sometimes Michael would turn to look back at them, his eyes showing great sorrow and weariness, then back to the battleground before the gate. As always in the dream, he wished he was closer and could hear what they were discussing, but the roar of the crowd caught their words and carried them away with the wind.
A messenger arrived settling atop the parapet near Gideon. He handed a rolled scroll to him and then took wing again flying back the way he came. Gideon read the scroll and handed it to Michael, the exchange of the looks between them saying more then enough. Michael glanced at the scroll and turned to Gabriel nodding his head at him. The crowd packed in tighter obscuring his view, yet he did not need to see, he had seen it before and saw it every time he closed his eyes. Gabriel’s trumpet sounded from the parapet, the single chord ringing throughout the world, a cheer went up and the crowd crammed tighter and tighter.
He knew this part of the dream well, the crowd parted and the archangels approached him with Michael at the head. This was the moment his life changed, the moment everything changed.
“Josua” Michael said
He raised his eyes to look at him, but the dream had changed. In his arms, Michael carried the limp form of a woman. A woman draped in white clothe, a woman with red- gold curls spilling down over her face. Michael held out his arms to him.
“Josua” he said again
“What does it mean?”
“WHAT DOES IT MEAN?” he shouted
“Josua, Josua wake up my friend”
He opened his eyes slowly and took in the surrounding. Along three walls going up almost two stories were shelves lined with leather bound books. A spiral staircase wound its way down to the lower floors to his left and a large stained glass window filtered sunlight through behind him. He sat up on the worn red leather couch and looked over to the desk sitting off to the right where a small old man was standing.
“I’m sorry Miguel I must have dozed off”
“You were practically shouting my old friend. It gave the alter boys and I quite a scare. We were practicing for mass tonight and didn’t realize anyone was up here. What time did you arrive?”
He stood and stretched, walking over to the balcony railing to look out at the church below.
“Sometime last night, I didn’t want to disturb you. You need your rest my friend you’re not as young as you used to be”
“Well we all grow old with time; it is our curse and our blessing I think.”
“That is an odd sentiment for a priest especially a catholic one.”
He laughed a full-bodied laugh, “And that is quite a statement coming from the one who set me on the path as a young boy”
“I only said you needed to rethink your current choices, I said nothing about becoming a priest or a catholic one for that matter.”
“No Josua you showed me the possibilities and from there I chose to follow god, I chose Roman Catholics because lets face it they had farther to go then others. What I teach might not be exactly church doctrine but it points people in the right direction”
“That is all we can ask for Miguel, that and the time to change the world”
Father Miguel Joaquin DelaSantos walked over and stood by his old friend. They both looked down at the modest church in the middle of New York’s Hells Kitchen with its intricately carved pews and its stained glass windows. It was not a gaudy ostentatious place, but more a simple and respectful refuge to find some much-needed peace. Miguel had worked hard to make it as warm and inviting as he could. Josua knew that Miguel turned no one aside: whatever their religion, race, or creed, he welcomed all. If you had a problem, this was the place to come, and in this neighborhood, that was a rare thing. No one talked or moved for a long moment until Miguel decided something in his own mind and lightly set his hand on Josua’s shoulder.
“For now my friend I am content to change only my small part of the world” as he spread his hands outs indicating the church. He turned and made his way to his desk and the oversized armchair behind it. He sat down and expelled a deep breathe collecting his thoughts for a moment.
“So come tell me what is troubling you.”
Josua turned around and leaned back against the railing, folding his arms across his chest
“It was nothing, a dream is all”
“A nightmare?” the old man looked at him inquisitively
“I am not sure I have never had a nightmare before.”
“Then how can you be sure it was a dream?”
“I have heard people describe dreams before Miguel and that was what it was. I have had the same dream for a very, very long time.”
He gave him a pointed look and very slowly said, “A very, very long time.”
“Well if you have had it before, then why the shouting and the excitement? Surely you must be used to it by now.”
“Something had changed at the end. It was very confusing. Was I really shouting?”
“Yes quite loudly I might add, you scared poor Wyatt Anderson almost to tears. He thought the place was suddenly haunted.”
“Please make my apologies to him. I don’t know Miguel the dream has left me confused, I need time to think, to clear my head.”
“You could always ask God what it means, surely he would tell you.”
Lost in thought and really without thinking Josua replied to him, “No sometimes talking to God is like talking to a child and I have not the patience for that right now.”
“Am I to understand you right, Our Lord and Creator, Almighty God himself is like a child?”
Josua looked up and peered at his old friends’ eyes, the brilliant blue of his looking deeply into the fading blue of Miguel’s.
“We have been friends a longtime Miguel, you are one of the few humans I trust, but sometimes I grow tired of this constant game of trying to get me to reveal more about things you should not know about.”
“I am sorry Josua” he chuckled “I couldn’t resist, you were so distracted I thought I could slip it by you.”
“Well Miguel this once I will answer your question just so the sermon board out front won’t read “GOD IS A CHILD” tomorrow. What I meant was he answers questions with question much like a child. He forces you to think, to question your questions and find the answers within yourself. To which he takes great delight although at times much like humans you want to scream just give me the answer.”
“Fascinating! Whoever would have thought that humans and Angels would have so much in common?”
“Enough sarcasm Miguel, you know I don’t like it when you poke fun at us. For all our perceived strengths we are as fragile as any of God’s creations.”
“Again I am sorry Josua, sometimes it is just too easy to remind you that you might be closer to God but you are not that far above humanity. Now you still haven’t told me what brings you to New York. It has been what six months since your last visit?”
“I am sorry Miguel but I have too much on my mind at this moment to make sense of everything. I think I will go for a walk and get a bit of fresh air. After that I will tell you about why I am in town.”
“Well then I will leave you to it. I have to read over my notes for mass tonight. Say hello to Tony for me.”
Josua smiled; there was no fooling the old man sometimes.
“Do you want me to bring you anything back?”
“Why yes two, extra kraut, and a bag of chips”
“That stuff is going to be the death of you, you realize that don’t you?”
“It is alright I have friends in high places.”
They both laughed at that and Josua made his way down the spiral staircase from Miguel’s private study to the church below and then out the door at the back.
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