"Born of ignorance, consumed by the careless. You accept darkness, yet you choose to live in the light. We who have turned away the light and the dark teeter on the edge of nothing. You have cursed yourselves... because the closer you get to the light, the greater your shadow becomes."
"Is darkness truly the heart's true essence?" I whispered to myself before shutting the complete history of the First Days War, a book I happened to pick up in Gabriel's study. I set the volume down on the window ceil that I perched on and watched the clouds roll beneath me like white waves.
Bethlem Tower wasn't the only floating sanctuary my kind had, but it was the brightest and it was home to not only me, but many others.
I scooped up the book beside me, slipped into my small kitten heeled shoes beneath me before I exited my living quarters and stepped onto Bethlem's central outdoor markets.
I walked leisurely alongside the chaos of vendors and galloping children, everyone knew one another, they all passed by and smiled voicing their good mornings and hellos.
I kept walking until I reached a small cobble stone path that lead directly into the garden area. My long floor length dress brushed by the hedges around me, the light fabric blowing behind me as I picked up my pace to a light jog and headed into the hedge maze.
The gardens hedge maze was elaborate with many twists and turns. Without previous knowledge of it's layout, you could roam for days and lose one's way.
Luckily, I knew the passages like the back of my hand. I spent many hours hiding in the maze as a child. No one knew it as well as I, only one.
I dashed around the corner of the last hedge when I reached the middle if the puzzle and there he was. The one man who knew the maze as well as me, my mentor, my friend, my teacher, Gabriel.
He sat on the ledge of the grand fountain, book in his hand as usual, his light blonde hair brushing against his cheeks as his bangs fell gently over his blue eyes that were focusing so intently on the words displayed before him. He was light and everything around him seemed to dim in comparison.
I clutched the book to my chest and began to walk slowly over to him. The small clicks of my shoes drew him away from his book and to me. He marked his page before setting his book down. He smiled and I couldn't help myself from smiling back.
"Evangeline, only you know where to find me." he said when I sat beside him. I handed him the book in my hands, "I finished."
Gabriel brushed a hand over the cover, "The First Days War" he read, "Out of all the books in my library, you chose this. May I ask why?"
I began to play with my hands in my lap when I answered, "It's our history, shouldn't I stop being sheltered from it?"
Gabriel ran a hand through his hair and sighed, "I'm taking your age into account. Your still young, Evangeline."
"Twenty years is not young."
"Maybe in human years, but in ours your barely beginning...Your still like a child."
Anger built inside me until I snapped at him," If you don't teach me, the world will."
Gabriel was silent for a few passing moments before he nodded. I smiled knowing I've won and since we were on the topic The First Days War I decided to probe further.
"Were you really there when those words were first spoken? Are we truly cursed to living in our own darkness?"
Gabriel shook his head," No, no. Those were empty words that were meant to shake our soldiers hearts. If we listened, we would have lost the war but we carried on and earned our freedom. We won, our dear Eve."
I laughed and he smiled in return, "You are the only person who ever calls me that."
"I like it, short, sweet..."
I rolled my eyes, "Isn't it considered rude not to speak someone's full name?"
"That's why I only use it when it's just us." he winked.
I rolled my eyes before asking another question, "Wait, if you fought in The First Days War that must mean your thousands of years old!"
Gabriel motioned me closer and until we were inches apart, "Did you also know it's considered rude to ask a Nephilim his age?"
He was teasing me again.
He began to laugh until I gave him a shove away from me which caused him to tumble into the fountain behind us. I gasped, "Gabriel!" That wasn't my intention.
I leaned over in concern and watched as the bubbles rise in the place where he had fallen. Suddenly, a hand shot out and pulled me in. The cold water consumed me, it's icy grip pulling me under until I pushed my way passed the surface. I gasped, air filling my lungs.
Gabriel laughed behind me, his hair gleaming with water droplets. I splashed him forcefully, "How rude!"
"You pushed me first!"
"Not intentionally!" I glared.
Gabriel grabbed the ledge and pulled himself out. He squeezed out his shirt before stretching a hand down to fish me out. I stared at the hand for a moment before pushing away my grudge and letting him help me out.
I stood before him, like a wet puppy. Arm crossed over my chest, hair plastered to my face, and shivering.
Suddenly a coat was dropped over me. I looked at the jacket and realized it was Gabriel's military jacket.
I looked up at him, his face was turned away from me, a hint of red touched his cheeks when he said, " You should cover yourself."
He turned around and cleared his throat.
Confused, I looked down at myself and realized my white gown stuck to my body and highlighted everything Gabriel shouldn't see.
I quickly shrugged on Gabriel's coat. It completely drowned me but at least it covered everything.
"Should we get going?" Gabriel asked.
I nodded, he turned as if I voiced my answer. As if a ship let down it's sails, Gabriel released his massive white wings.
He picked me up in a bundle," Then, Let's fly."
THANK YOU FOR READING! ^^