❯ Imperfect Sky – Beautiful ( Chapter 9 )

[ T - Teen: Not suitable for readers under 13 ]

Disclaimer: Angel Sanctuary is mine like hamburgers are made of ham… oh, wait…

AN: -.o; Wow, don’t all review at once… Lack of reviews makes me sad like this: T_T C’mon, I know ya’ll have been reading it! Is it really that hard to just write `nice story’? Unless, uh… -.-; Shutting up now. (muttermutter…) On another note, if anyone’s wondering why I didn’t write anything about the time when Katan was passing out the `Angel Sanctuary’ discs – actually, I did. Except, I wrote it before I decided exactly what I was going to do with this story, and I posted it as a one-shot called `Lambs’… feel free to read it! -.-;; Incidentally, some actual warnings this time – for gore, violence, abuse, you get the picture… also, for excessive quoting from the manga, heh…

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Chapter Nine: Beautiful

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If thy hand or thy foot offend thee, cut them off, and cast them from thee… It is better for thee to enter into life halt or maimed, rather than… be cast into everlasting fire.

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Katan sat in a small, dark apartment – his home away from home for the past few months – with his head buried in his hands. He looked at first rather like a man trying to cope with the loss of a loved one – which was ironic, since he’d just (supposedly) regained one several hours ago. It was not actually a pose of mourning, however – for the moment, at least – he had too much to think about to afford that luxury.

Rosiel baffled him, completely and utterly. They should have been in Heaven right now – right at this very moment, he could have been watching as Rosiel announced his miraculous return before a crowd of Heaven’s most powerful angels… the look on the crazed Prime Minister’s face was something he’d barely dared to dream about, before, but tonight he’d thought that maybe…

He couldn’t understand how Mudo Setsuna could possibly be Alexiel, for one thing. True, there was something odd about the boy, but his aura was the textbook definition of normal – and more importantly, he didn’t have a guardian angel. All the facts pointed to him being a complete nobody, and yet Rosiel was so convinced of the contrary that he had already… already murdered another… Katan’s shoulders trembled once, twice, and he forcefully quelled the nausea that the very thought of a golem brought on. He couldn’t believe that his master was capable of turning a human, however sinful, into such a vile creature…

Katan desperately tried to put that thought out of his mind. But what if Mudo was Alexiel? After all this, he almost wished he was. But – he shuddered again – if Alexiel’s soul really awoke, then what? If Rosiel were to be sealed into the earth again, Katan could only hope that he went down with him – although, he had thought that his lord had implied that he had a plan… Katan touched his cheek self-consciously, and winced.

He’d never known Rosiel to lash out like that, never. And then, to turn around and ask him, of all things, if he thought he was beautiful? Oh, it wasn’t as if Katan hadn’t heard that question before – he had always seemed so melancholic, those times, and would ask the question quizzically, with a baffled shake of his head at the young cherub’s insistence… Katan ground his palms into his eyes – he was so tired – and he wondered why he also felt so lonely…

A movement caught his eye as he lowered his hands, and he seized on the distraction happily. His master had ordered him to hang back as a potential escape route while he set his plan in motion, and he had been watching the preparations in the warehouse shown on his viewing portal with growing unease. Rosiel had apparently meant to lure Setsuna there by using his sister as bait; the girl had been terrified, had been calling for him… Now, however, it seemed that the boy had arrived at last. Katan leaned forward in morbid fascination, as his master baited Mudo with cold words – testing his boundaries? Perhaps, if the boy was quick to anger, unleashing Alexiel would be easy – that didn’t seem to be the case, however. Moreover, he saw right through Rosiel’s disguise…

Katan grimaced as the golem attacked the boy from behind, forced himself to watch with a cool expression as the creature twisted the boy’s arm off to a revolting cracking sound. This boy, he reminded himself, was not the young innocent that he appeared to be… surely… And the gang members that the beast turned on next – necessary losses… he felt ill…

“What’s wrong?” he heard his lord wonder, clutching cruelly at Setsuna’s dripping face. “Why won’t you awaken? Discard this fragile, useless body… What’s keeping you tied to this miserable corporeal world?”

Sa… Sara…

Katan watched as Rosiel raised a knife to the girl’s face – and then he had to looks away, arms crossed tightly over his chest to hold himself together. “Should I peel her face like an apple?” This is wrong… “She’ll still be alive… that way she’ll feel the pain…” Setsuna screamed…

A flare of light snapped Katan’s attention back to the screen – if Alexiel awakened, would this madness stop? – and his breath lodged in his throat. Not Alexiel – but who, then? Alexiel’s aura, he knew, was war-like and terrible, whereas this feeling could lull one into an everlasting sleep – but with so much power, who else could it possibly be? Katan realized with a sick jolt that this being was even more powerful than Rosiel – he sought out his master, and found that his disguise had already been burned away in that blinding light. He opened the escape portal at once, and couldn’t breathe properly until Rosiel was safely in his arms.

“Rosiel!” he choked. “What was that… that force…?”

“It was Adam Kadamon,” Rosiel said grimly, glowering.

Katan’s mind reeled. Adam Kadamon – the Holy Hermit – was the greatest of all angels, second only to God… for the boy to have access to such power… “This is too dangerous,” he said, voice cracking under the strain. “We must leave this sphere at once-”

“That’s enough!”

Katan tried futilely to grab Rosiel’s hand as he turned away. “But-”

“I said that’s enough!” Like a snake striking, a hand closed around his throat, effectively silencing him, and Katan was too shocked to struggle – or maybe Rosiel’s cold smirk had frozen him in place. “You don’t tell me what to do – remember that. I will expose Mudo Setsuna’s true form… Don’t you understand how essential that is?” Rosiel’s eyes narrowed, and he thrust the cherub away from him; Katan’s hand flew automatically to his bruised neck, but that seemed to be all he could do. “Not that that should matter to you. You should be willing to do whatever I ask, without question, or you’re not worthy to do anything at all – isn’t that right?”

Katan gawked at him for a moment, but then bowed his head in defeat. “Yes… of course… Rosiel-sama…”

The inorganic angel smiled sweetly at him; in context, it seemed almost macabre. “Much better. Now, you’re free to do as you please until my next orders; I have some friends to meet…” Rosiel chuckled darkly as he disappeared.

Katan’s small apartment gradually faded back into focus around him. He sank heavily into his chair, one hand still lingering on his throat. Such sudden rage, and so strong… Katan tried hard to remember ever even seeing Rosiel truly angry before, let alone being the subject of his irritation, and failed. As the initial shock wore off, he found that he was shaking. What had happen to his…?

He lowered his hand. His master. The only one who had ever been worthy of his complete devotion. If he didn’t serve Rosiel, after all – why, he’d never done anything else in his life. He couldn’t imagine it. You should be willing to do whatever I ask, without question, or you’re not worthy to do anything at all – a twisted way of putting it, but really, it was true…

Not to mention, he added firmly, if Rosiel couldn’t save Heaven then no one could. Resolved filled him; Rosiel was everyone’s last hope – his only hope – and as such, he must follow him anywhere, no matter what. His throat gave an aching throb, but he ignored it. No matter what…

TBC

Imperfect Sky – Red Moon
Imperfect Sky – Spinning