The horde of demons on the strip club rooftop launched one last volley before dropping through the roof and back to their debauchery below. The visual feeds of both Angela and Billy remained focused on the roof and the two white robed individuals between them and that final volley, but they had at least stopped moving up.
Guardian Three, isolate that Mustang and get his license plate. Cherry, circle the building and mark all the exits, Colonel Peters ordered into the command net. Both video feeds held fast as the man and woman Identified as Mihr and Theliel rose to meet them. Hey, did you hear me? Lets go!
Sir, they just saved our bacon down there. I’d like to learn more about them, Angela stated flatly.
Sir, we haven’t found much information about these things. Maybe it would be a good idea to let them interact with them, Specialist Johnson said.
What about the target? Peters asked recognizing the value in what his subordinates were saying.
If they’ll keep the current orientation I can watch the car and Dominech can watch the building, Johnson replied.
Hear that you two? Keep them below you so we can monitor the car and building and then have your conversation, but we need to get back in there after Dante, Colonel Peters agreed. By the way, what do you have on those Delta’s?
Not a lot, sir, Dominech said. We know whatever they are, they are real in the ether.
What does that mean? Peters asked.
Means what it means, sir. They’re just as real to someone in the ether like you’re real to us here, sir. If that fire hits them in the ether it gets communicated to their actual body here somehow, Specialist Dominech said. Mihr and Theliel came to a halt just below Billy and Angela. The flaming swords disappeared as the pair stopped their motion and regarded the two Guardians.
Thanks for that back there, Billy said.
You’re welcome, the young woman said.
No need for thanks. It is our duty, the man said.
But you have it nonetheless, Angela said. The man inclined his head slightly.
Why are you doing this? How are they doing this? How are you and them here at all? Billy blurted out. Theliel laughed in a light, refreshing tone that eased the weight Colonel Peters felt lying on his heart.
Because you invited Christ into your heart and he sent us to keep you safe, Theliel answered. We can do this because God has ordained it from the beginning of creation.
We have guarded our charges from the beginning to this day and will continue to do so until the world is remade as the new Eden, Mihr added.
This hasn’t always been here, Angela said using her hands to frame the white, crackling line of power that issued forth from her chest and connected her to Billy. Angela’s voice stuttered as she choked out her next words. This didn’t exist until Scott Carpenter died on his last mission. I miss him.
He was a bright light in the world, yes, Mihr said, reaching up to touch Angela’s foot. What he did isn’t something new. He simply reestablished something human beings had lost.
Colonel, we have LEOs enroute. ETA is five minutes out, Sergeant Sanchez reported interrupting the exchange.
Acknowledged, Colonel Peters said, fascinated by the conversation.
We lost something? Billy asked.
Your technological wonders and increasing ability to divest yourselves of personality through the Internet is removing the humanity from Humanity, Theliel said. You no longer need to interact with each other to live. You can divest yourselves of all identifying information and be nearly completely anonymous. You think you are more connected this way, but you are losing the need for loving kindness and ability to provide it every day.
I don’t understand, Billy said.
Scott Carpenter did not die. He sacrificed himself to restore the power Humanity has through simple human interaction. The more you interact, touch, and care for one another the more power you gain, Mihr said.
There will come a time when the technology that makes our conversation possible will no longer be there. At that time you will have to rediscover that knowledge which was lost to the Men of Valor that have come before, Theliel said.
Huh? Billy said, still not following the conversation.
The demons have always been there, at least for me. Why can they hurt us now? They couldn’t do that before, Angela said.
Demons have always been able to affect the world around Humanity, and they have always been able to affect you, as well, Mihr said. Before now they were not aware of you nor did you pose a threat to them. They are now, and you do now.
Are they really… Angela didn’t finish the statement.
Yes, they really are demons, Theliel said with all solemnity.
From… Billy left his question finished as well.
Hell? Yes, and they will continue to oppose you from now on when they see you, Mihr said.
What do we do? Billy asked.
You do what is right, Theliel said, smiling and rising until she was face to face with Billy, able to caress his cheek with her hand.
How do I know what that is? Billy asked.
What is right and what is wrong has been given to Humanity long ago, Mihr stated flatly.
Where? Billy asked.
This is great, but we have to get after our guy, Colonel Peters said, interrupting the conversation that seemed to make him uncomfortable for reasons he didn’t really understand.
LEOs will be there shortly, sir. Our guy is as good as in the bag, Sergeant Sanchez said.
Theliel and Mihr began to move in closer to Billy and Angela. It became clear they intended to meld with the two. Billy drifted backward away from Theliel.
Wait, wait. I have more questions, Billy said holding out his hands. Theliel stopped as did Mihr.
They can hurt us and we have no way to defend ourselves or hurt them. How are we supposed to fight them? Billy asked.
Rediscover the old ways and you will become more powerful than any demon in Hell, even Satan, himself, Theliel said seriously. The wail of sirens announced the arrival of multiple police vehicles. Angela and Billy both focused their attention on the building below. As the police vehicles arrived, lances of white energy dropped out of both Angela and Billy linking them to more than half the police men and women as they got out of their vehicles. Billy and Angela began moving down, stopping just above the gathered police force who were rapidly entering the strip club. Theliel and Mihr floated next to their charges as other individuals of every ethnicity and background began emerging from the police who were connected to them. Smiles and waves were exchanged between the pair hovering high and the new arrivals, who began disappearing inside the building as their charges went about their duties. Angela, Billy, and everyone in the control room were speechless.
Three or four minutes went by when an unmarked police car arrived and an elderly man got out wearing a suit and tie. Every beam of energy in the area struck the man in the chest. Colonel Peters expected the man to rock back with the impact. Instead, he hitched up his pants and waited. A minute more and a uniformed officer came running out of the building and directly over to the man in the suit. Billy and Angela drifted over to listen to the conversation.
“Sir, there’s no one matching the description we’ve been given. We’re still canvassing IDs but I don’t think he’s here, sir,” the officer said. Billy and Angela looked at each other then to the convertible mustang that still sat in the parking lot. Colonel Peters removed his visualization helmet and looked at his staff in Heaven. He saw looks of dismay and confusion on everyone’s faces that he assumed mirrored his own. How had Robert Dante gotten away again?
Guardians of the Herald is a weekly serial published and copyright by The Cavalier, Mark Malcolm. For more information about this story please join us on our Facebook page community at www.facebook.com/firstchevalierbooks.