The Angel's Lament
It is Autumn now – figuratively, if not literally. Some of the old have died – literally, in this case – and new things have come to take their place. Others are dead, just as literally and just as finally, and yet nothing can ever take their place. Some of them we are better off without, and in some other cases the Planes will never recover from their loss.
I am at once one of the “figuratively dead” and one of those things the Multiverse would likely be better off without, yet alas for the Planes my death is but a figure of speech, and through it all I have endured; warped and ravaged by the winds of fate, and yet I stand, or at least a passable facsimile.
But I am most certainly yet alive, and the Planes are not better for it.
I am called the betrayer, and other things too severe for polite company.
I have seen friends die. I have held the one I loved as she choked out her last, dying gasps on my own blade.
And once, I was a far better creature than I have become.
They accuse me of wrongs, yet not a single one of them, those simple mortals – and I do not say this with contempt, but with true pity – understands the injustice and the indignities visited upon me.
I am a Celestial, a creature of the Upper Planes. Once a paragon of good and a champion of the downtrodden. For a century after leaving Arborea I walked the Planes, doing what little any lone being, mortal or angel, can do. It was my purpose, and my downfall.
I was a creature of good incarnate.
But do not think that my arrogance does not allow me to see the truth. I can see better than anyone else that I am no longer what I once was.
The Betrayer. The Fallen.
I have little doubt that on my own Plane I would be slain out of hand, a sign of weakness and failure.
Perhaps it would be simpler – even for the best – but anyone, even a mere mortal, can tell you that to willingly step into the jaws of the trap that will end your life takes more will than any but the greatest of us can muster.
Perhaps this, all of it, is my punishment. After all, it was I who chose to take the Prime under my wing – figuratively, of course – I who chose to protect him; to guide him. And in so doing, in shielding him from those foes he made, time and time again, I aided what would become, unwittingly, one of the great Sigillian criminals of the age.
And we freed one of the greatest Evils that the Planes have seen in an age, that which would turn out to be the one named Oengam. How could either of us have known such a thing?
I should have known – somehow. There must have been some sign.
But there was nothing.
There is a proverb among one race of Prime Elves. They say that, “To betray, you must first belong.” I have betrayed no-one.
To those with whom I share bonds I have been ever faithful and ever loyal, time and time again to my own detriment. Silently I endured in the shadow of the great suffering of a mortal.
What does a mortal know of suffering!? A mortal, fool and Clueless enough that he bartered his own soul away to an arch-Fiend without even realizing such a thing! A soul he did not lose, a soul to which that Fiend lost claim to not even a week later! He lost nothing, for he did not die, and yet he became a different person only at the thought of such a loss.
And I, in my infinite wisdom? I gained it back, for a price that mortal could never even imagine. A price that mortal, my friend, never even tried to discover.
But let the others fawn over him.
Let them paw at his robes.
How terrible it must have been.
Mortals care only for other mortals. It is the curse of the Celestial to care for others, to bleed, suffer and die; on the streets of Sigil, on the battle plains of the Blood War, perhaps even over and over without end.
In a dark, damp cave.
At the hands of the one you love.
Time, and time again.
Wondering – hoping, that perhaps, just maybe, the ones you have fought so much for will come.
Hanging on a wall, stripped naked and covered in your own blood.
Heart, torn, over and over again from your chest.
But never dying.
Your lives are nothing but the flicker of a candle, meaningless when lit and meaningless when snuffed out. Each one of you is one more ungrateful insect upon the Multiverse, an enthusiastic cheerleader upon the side lines, ever boastful of your own contributions yet suddenly absent whenever the war comes to roost.
And should the tide ever turn, should you ever sense any sort of benefit, you will turn on us like dogs; your protectors, the only ones standing between the Prime worlds and the eternal, all-consuming flames and wickedly gleaming blades of the Lower Planes.
I am Alusair.
I have fallen from grace, because I have seen the truth and I have grown tired of the fickleness of mortals,
of being cast aside like a rag that has out-lived its usefulness.
Do not speak to me of Betrayal.
Return to the musings of Alusair