It's Boxing Day and I should be sitting with my feet up enjoying the rest of the Chocolates and Christmas television. However, the XBox cable is missing, we can't unscrew the bottom of the microscope, the cats got at the turkey and Assassin's Creed III won't update. Who says the world isn't ending!!!
In between disasters here is the long awaited next chunk of In the Arms of an Angel. My poorly computer is all better and working faster and more smoothly than it has since I first got it, so here we go. Bear in mind that this was written for the prompt two weeks ago, or was it three? Therefore this weeks promt was kind of stuffed in at the end. It was
“I don’t know what you mean,” Gabri’el said, climbing to his feet. He looked hurt and confused. This time it wasn’t washing. Uzzi’el crossed his arms across his chest and narrowed his eyes.
“When did it happen, Gabri’el? When did you decide to betray me? Was it before we came here? Did you deliberately leave me in the hands of the enforcers? Did you orchestrate it?”
“Don’t be ridiculous. Of course I didn’t. I love you. You know I love you. Everyone knows I love you,” He swept his arm around the table like the showman he was.
“What about Pasha? You don’t love him. You’ve made that clear enough. Did it give you pleasure to hand him over to Micha’el? Did you discuss with him what drugs to use on Pasha to make sure you could manipulate our connection so they affected me too. You wouldn’t have left something like that to chance would you?”
“Uzzy, are you sure you’re feeling well? You’ve been so ill and you’re talking nonsense.”
“I haven’t been ill, Gabri’el and you know it. You’ve simply been manipulating me, and everyone else. I want to know one thing from you, that’s all. Just one thing.”
“What?” Gabri’el asked suspiciously.
“Where is he? Where is Pasha?”
“I don’t know anything about….”
“Don’t lie to me. You’ve been and done many things to me, but you’ve never directly lied. Give me a straight answer. Do you know where he is?”
“But you know who has him.”
“You’re sick, Uzzy,” Gabriel said gently. “Your head’s not right. You can’t be feeling yourself or you wouldn’t say such things to me. I love you, Uzzy. I….”
“No, Gabri’el. You’re not going to squirm off the hook this time. This is my soulmate and I’m not compromising. Tell me what you know.”
“I don’t know anything. Uzzy, you’re paranoid, deluded, can’t you see that? You’re ill. You should lie down.” Gabri’el reached out to him and something snapped inside. Uzzi’el grabbed the arm, pulled, twisted and before he knew it Gabriel found himself with his back pressed against Uzzi’el, his arm twisted behind him and Uzzi’el’s arm around his throat, cutting off is air.
“I’m not a weakling and I’m not a fool. Once again, you underestimate me. You didn’t think I’d get free from the enforcers, did you? And it must have felt like your birthday when I went missing. I’m sure you were already in the process of taking my position, even then. It must have been frustrating when my friends insisted on searching for me before they’d mourn my death like you did. And then… what did I do? I came back. I spoiled your plans and to top it all I had a human mate. You hate humans, don’t you? You always have?
“This war isn’t about saving humanity, not for you. It isn’t about breaking the power of the Council to stop them meddling in human affairs, driving them to destruction. No, it’s about power. It’s always been about power. You couldn’t care less if Micha’el wiped out every human on the planet. In fact I’m sure it’s part of your plan that between you, you give it your best shot. Why share Earth with humanity when you can take it from them by force?
There were gasps from around the table and one or two people got to their feet.
“Uzzy,” Gabri’el said in an even, placating voice. “You’re obviously not well. You don’t know what you’re saying. Just let me go and….”
Uzzi’el tightened his grip. “Not a chance, sunshine. You’re not going to talk me into believing I’m deluded and I’m not going let you convince anyone else either. I’m not ill and I’m not confused. In fact, I’m clearer than I’ve been in ages. I see it now. It’s all one big game for you, isn’t it? The whole thing. Tell me—did you ever really care for me, even a little.”
Gabri’el laughed, and it wasn’t a nice one. “Care for you? Yeah, I guess so, in the way a human would care for a puppy. You’re soft and sweet and beautiful and so, so easy to manipulate. It was almost too easy, no challenge at all. You swallowed every line I fed you, like you were starving and you were a bloody good fuck, but you were never going to be in it for the long run.
“For the record, no, I didn’t sell you out to the enforcers but I can’t say I was too upset when they caught you. It suited my plans just fine.”
Intense pain stabbed into Uzzi’el’s heart with every word. “I knew it,” he said hoarsely, “I knew you left me. You let them take me, let them do those terrible things to me.” For a moment he felt overwhelmingly weak and Gabri’el seemed to sense it. He surged forward, intending to burst from Uzzi’el’s arms but Uzzi’el wasn’t that weak and all Gabri’el earned for himself was his shoulder almost yanked out of its socket.
“Never mind, Gabri’el, I’m back now. I’m sure it’s a relief to know I’m home and well again.”
“Yeah, I’m ecstatic,” Gabri’el ground out. Two warriors appeared at Uzzi’el’s elbow and he allowed them to take Gabri’el from his arms and bind him.
“Find out what he knows about Micha’el,” Uzzi’el said coldly. “I don’t care what you do to him to get the information.”
“Don’t call me that.” He turned his back as Gabri’el was dragged away, screaming abuse at him. He closed his ears and his heart. “Right, ladies and gentlemen, I think some damage limitation might be in order. And we have a rebellion to plan…properly.”
For a moment there was silence, then one of members of the council of war, a beautiful blonde in a red satin dress, raised her glass and said, in a velvet soft voice. “Well done Uzzy darling. I never did like that slimy toad."
And now go and check out the rest of this week's flashers who braved the desolation of Boxing Day to post for your delight