The Seventh [Short Story]

THE SEVENTH

The heavens, once blessed with a clear blue had been robbed of its vitality. The optimistic and early summer day had been taken away, and this brought the towns peoples’ curious sets of brown, green and hazel eyes to the sky. The sparse clouds were not happy with this abrupt change, but at this moment, they were not bound by the will of mother nature. They were under the control of something much more powerful. And this omnipresence exercised that almighty will, forcing them to swirl about the now darkened heavens until a small opening had formed in the center.

From this opening, there were armies of them, all fitted in white armor which covered their whole body. Upon their heads were golden helmets, and attached to the top of each side were white feathers. In their hands were golden hilts but it was not fortified with any steel blade, instead, a white light extended from the base, and up three feet. Their eyes were filled with fire. Their wings extended four feet from each side, and they flapped furiously against the wind to keep them stabilized.

The time had come. They all denied it but sitting in that cardboard box outside the gas station was Azazel, and he did not. His hand combed through his disheveled shoulder-length hair in a sporadic manner. His clothing was of the cheapest quality, and was burdened with a few tears at the shoulder, and one by the upper thigh. His hands were dirty and oil-stained from his constant offers to repair the car that needed refueling.

When fortune allowed him the pleasure of fixing the random driver’s car, he would delight in it, for it gave him time to tell them of the impending judgment. The passengers never offered their concerns in what he had to say. Their eyes was fixed upon their smart phone, checking the latest celebrity news, or the recent trend in the fashion industry. He told them the angels would descend upon them and they would judge those who had closed their hearts to the creator, but the glaring screen of the blackberry was too enchanting for some. The ones who did not submit to the distracting nature of the smart phone, responded to his warnings with half-curious and elevated eyebrows. Soon, a dismissive smirk followed, and some even played along with him, offering patronizing gestures and tossing him a few dollars for his work.

But those who ignored his warnings; the regular patrons who reveled in their mockery had now gathered in the street across from that very gas station, and their gazes were arrested by the screeching roars from the heavens. The high pitched sound was layered with a low rumbling, giving the observer that gut wrenching feeling one gets when they know the ominous is soon to visit their doorstep. Fingers pointed to the skies and the townspeople cried out in fear. A few of them turned to the homely man who had crawled outside his box with jerky and frantic motions. He managed to stand to his feet, and when he had done so, walked to the crowd. He pointed his free hand out to them, while the other scratched at his cheek with the kind of jittery rhythm akin to a drug addict.

“They –s—s—said… I”
“But. — The seventh— the seventh is here!”
“Lord, I tried-I tried, I tried! Lord forgive them,” said Azazel, his palms joining together and his head lifting to the skies.

And in this moment, the ground below the townspeople rumbled; the yellow dashes upon the concrete distorted and opened, sending the unjust into the scorching fire. Azazel dropped to his knees, his palms against the ground that had been untouched by hell’s fire, and he said,
“The seventh seal has been opened. It is done.”

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