A Divine Intervention – 1925 (Gabriel’s Past)

It was 1925 in New York. I just walked out of the theater where I watched the film premiere of ‘Ben Hur’. You’re now going to say, ‘Wait, wait, wait! Ben Hur was released in November 1959!” Yes, and no. Ben Hur with Charlton Heston was the 1959 movie. But there has been an earlier movie with Ramon Novarro as the leading actor… and that was the movie I went to see.

I always liked Ramon Novarro, an excellent silent movie actor. But I was a bit disappointed by this role. He didn’t seem to be a great fit for the Prince of Hur… however, I’m not a film critic, in fact, I’m just a fan who likes to watch movies… no… my profession is another one.

I didn’t feel my best that day and actually didn’t even feel like going. But my friends and brothers talked me into it, and to get them off my back, I finally decided to take a short trip to New York. *chuckle*

That might be a weird thing for you, to ‘read’ me chuckle, when I say ‘short trip’. We winged individuals travel a bit differently than you humans. But let’s get back to 1925…

It was December 30, almost the last day of the year… people in the movie theater were thoughtful after the movie… in good spirits, but thoughtful. I was lost in my own thoughts, mostly, if I remember correctly, I was suffering from a small heartache, after my last girlfriend’s breakup. I should have been used to that by now, I know. Being with one of the ‘Council of Twelve’ members isn’t an easy task. We don’t have much time for our love interests, we do expect a lot, but don’t give much back, but most of all, we are too powerful for women to feel comfortable in our presence for a longer period of time.

And then, a few streets further away, when I was looking for a quiet hidden corner to ‘dissolve’, I discovered a woman, desperately trying to escape from a man who followed her, laughing… I didn’t see the lady’s face, but I could sense and taste her fear. She was in a panic.

Within only a second I teleported ahead of the lady, waited for a moment, and then surrounded the corner of the building, to let the now panting lady bump into me.

The man stopped immediately and stood still like a rock while I carefully comforted the sobbing woman in my arms. When the man looked up, one of the weak street lanterns permitted me a good look at his face. I knew him… He was a nightmarish individual with no conscience whatsoever, one of the most dangerous predators in existence… He was absolutely ruthless, sadistic, and generally evil. It was time he got off the streets. The man was a serial killer. I wondered idly, where law enforcement was when you needed them.

I didn’t hesitate long. He might hunt for helpless ladies, but he seemed to be well trained, and overconfident in his own abilities, and I felt like swiping the smug grin off his face.

I released the woman’s hands from my coat, where they had cramped the fabric, and carefully lifted her chin. “Go home, child.” I softly said. “All is good. No harm will befall you, I promise.” She smiled… I knew what effect I had on victims, and these few words were all she needed. Her eyes were dreamy when she left us…

The man stared at me. “Why did you have to come along and interfere? It was not upon you to get in between my wife and me.” I looked at my fingernails. “We both know, she’s not your wife, Gaston.” I had to say, he kept his smug smile, but other than a slight widening of his nostrils, nothing betrayed his surprise.

He chuckled. “Why don’t you and I make sure something like this doesn’t happen ever again, pal?” Gaston asked. And I smiled… My brothers in the Council of Twelve would have known that was a very, very bad sign. But this human had no idea. I knew, he was up for a fight, and nothing would satisfy him more at this moment, than showing me his physical superiority. My shoulders slightly slumped, my entire form shrunk a bit, and I took a well-calculated step back. “N…no. I don’t think so. Also… I have to leave…”

He took a brave step closer, and then another one… when my fist collided with his nose. Blood splashed down his face and I sighed softly. “Hurts, doesn’t it?” He had instinctively clutched his nose; when he now pulled it away, blood was dripping from his fingers. “Are you out of your mind?” He screamed. Furiously he pulled a handgun and pointed it at me…

And that was the second, I decided to show him, who he was dealing with…

My wordly attire disappeared, I wore leatherpants and a white silk shirt, boots on my feet, and my hat was gone… but, of course, what left Gaston frozen in shock and fear, were a pair of huge, white, black speckled wings, similar to the one of a Snowy Owl.

He screamed in fear, and blinded, he sank to the floor, the revolver had fallen out of his hand… crying he begged: “Please… please, don’t kill me! I will do whatever you want.”

I grinned. “That you will anyway. And I won’t have to kill you. You’re already dead.” He clearly struggled to understand what I said to him. “W…what?” He finally seemed to grasp the point. “Does that mean, I’m going to Heaven now?” I had a blast with this one. It took all my control not to laugh loudly. I only shook my head. “No, Gaston. The way up is not yours. You’re traveling into the other direction.” He seemed confused again. “But… but…” I smiled and pointed behind him… “Here comes your escort.”

He swung around, and there they stood, three giant, strange looking creatures, horned, unusually deformed, dressed in dark attires, armed with swords and sickles… Gaston howled. “No… no… no! Protect me!” I laughed. “No way. You’ll get what you deserve. Eternal torture, inferno, emptiness… Whatever you fear, it will be yours.”

There was nothing he could do. He tried to run for it, but the three collectors were faster. They grabbed his spirit and dragged him through the dimensional portal behind him. When the crossover had closed, Two of my friends landed next to me… Centriel and Zachariel. Both shook their heads. “Really, Gabriel. You can’t even go to a movie theater without getting into trouble.” Centriel said. I nodded and sighed again. “It seems very much trouble finds me.”

Zachariel clapped my shoulder. “Let’s go home, brother. Dinner at Tsechirel’s place, and I want to introduce a very cute little Guardian to you.” I smiled. “Thank you… just what I need now…” Within only a few seconds, we were on our way…

Picture courtesy of Google.com

Soul Taker Secrets – The Council Of Twelve Is Fantasy!

I was asked a short while ago: “The Council Of Twelve” series is a series of religious books, right?” I almost laughed. However, I kept my cool and smiled. “No, it’s not. I’m writing a YA fantasy series!” And it is important to me that my readers take it as such!

The Council of Twelve series is a work of fiction, it won’t proclaim truth or even faith.

The Catholic Bible mentions seven Archangels, some of them named, and some are not. According to old scriptures, four Archangels’ names are known: Michael, Raphael, Gabriel, and Uriel. I ‘borrowed’ these names and added eight more Archangels to form the ‘Council of Twelve’. (Also, who tells me, these names are correct? We know them, yes. But I doubt very much anyone on Earth can remember, that our Lord God named four of his Archangels Michael, Raphael, Gabriel, and Uriel). Still, through history, these names, in connection with a strong, powerful creature called an ‘Archangel’, represent the ‘ultimate’ Good.

In my series, I wanted the ‘ultimate Good’. I wanted the fight ‘Good vs. Evil’… And angels and demons are the ones fighting that war. The characters of Archangels, angels, demons, and their respective hierarchies give me freedom any fantasy writer can only dream of!

Now, while Michael has on occasion been called the ‘Angel of Death’, others called him the ‘Archangel of War and Conflict’, on further websites and in articles he was the ‘Archangel of Peace and Safety’… who is right? Nobody knows for sure. And that’s why Archangel Michael in ‘The Council of Twelve’ series, is exactly, what I made him; the strongest, most powerful individual in existence, except his creator, of course, the oldest existing Archangel, and the leader of the Council.

Who said, Raphael was ‘the Healer’? In other essays, he’s described as ‘the Guardian’, and nobody can tell for sure, what and who he is, right? I made him both; the protector and keeper of the Healers and the Guardians…

It seems different sources are clear about Gabriel being ‘The Messenger’… and I kept it that way. The bible is clear about Gabriel being the Archangel sent to inform Virgin Mary about her being the mother of God’s son. Gabriel was also the Archangel who announced the birth of Jesus of Nazareth in Bethlehem.

As for Uriel, nobody is sure about his sources and roots. He’s described as ‘the Fire of God’, in other articles he’s been called the ‘balance of the world’, and other sources claim him to be ‘the Angel of Death’. It is said in certain books, that Uriel was the Archangel who killed the firstborn sons of Egypt when the Pharao didn’t let Moses’ people leave the country. The bible only talks about the ‘Angel of Perdition’, no name was mentioned there. But since it was talked about a powerful angel with a ‘fire sword’, it was assumed that Uriel was the one fulfilling God’s orders in that case. But again, nobody can tell for sure. In ‘The Council of Twelve’ series, Uriel is God’s beloved son, made out of fire and ashes, with flames in his wings. My Uriel is an Archangel existing in my fantasy… he’s caring, loving, and protecting, and he looks fabulous.

I purposely refrained from using any further Archangel names as they were mentioned in additional articles, books, or the ‘lost books of the bible’, the Apocrypha. I made up eight Archangels, born in my imagination and fantasy, each one strong, powerful, unique, and with his own set of skills. Each of these Archangels brings his own personality, talents, and voice into the ‘Council of Twelve’ and completes his brothers. Each of the Archangels is good to the core, fights the evil side, and protects his troops. They all fight, discuss, plan, protect… sometimes they joke, they laugh, they support each other, and they fall in love.

I have been writing about doing ‘research’ for ‘The Council of Twelve’ series. We are talking about the list of demons of the Ars Goetia, which helped me get my ‘Evil’ side organized and set up. The Good side needs an antagonist, and Lucifer doesn’t fight all alone. Again, we aren’t talking about a fact list… We’re talking about a lot of fantasy being involved in getting ‘The Council of Twelve’ series created. Of course, I didn’t take every demon’s name and transferred the creature into my book. I made some of them up, I gave them a voice, a look, a truly hateable creature. But all this is rooted in my fantasy and imagination.

If an author takes fantastic creatures and magic and transfers both into our existing world, in combination with falling in love and kissing, the genre is called ‘Paranormal Romance’. The Council of Twelve series is taking place in Heaven, on Earth, and in Hell, two of the three places are unknown to living organisms, which made me consider ‘my genre’ as ‘Fantasy’. There are too many unknown factors to call it ‘Paranormal Romance’.

Now, we know what the genre is called, but I downright refuse to consider ‘The Council of Twelve’ series ‘Christian or Religious Fantasy’. There’s too much fantasy in these books to truly consider them religious. It is an undeniable fact that the author of these books is a believer in God. It’s clearly readable that the Creator of the World has my highest respect. I never describe Him in detail. When He shows up within the stories, only His voice is mentioned. Heaven and Hell are formed and described after my imagination.

I’m not going into religious discussions, I don’t use bible quotes, and I am not going to argue with anyone about whether my fantasy is the ‘real’ Heaven, Hell, or story. The Good side is, what’s close to my heart, and you won’t find anything better to fight for the ‘Good side’ than a dozen Archangels with their love interests. Not to talk about the fact that I added a bit of humor to the stories, and I expect my readers to laugh, enjoy the stories and fall in love with the characters, just like other authors do. I’d like my readers to be entertained, and not to think too intensely about religious beliefs when reading ‘The Council of Twelve’ series. Read, be entertained, and enjoy.

Find ‘The Council of Twelve’ books here below:

Soul Taker: https://books2read.com/u/m2roOj

Sundance: https://books2read.com/u/mgGGeX

Demon Tracker: https://books2read.com/u/3yEx6l

Bounty Hunter: https://books2read.com/u/mgzd5X

Book 5 – to follow soon!

Read the books and enjoy the read! And don’t forget, I’m a writer, I’d be enthusiastic about your good review.

An Unexpected Antagonist


‘The Council Of Twelve’ series is at a critical point at this moment. With the number of books, the tension between Good and Evil grows. The stories aren’t as innocent and romantic as they used to be. Of course, there is still a lot of love involved, after all, we are looking at the Good Side, Heaven,…

But also, there is the other side, and the tension in Hell has grown… Book 9 in the series delivers chaos, shows that there isn’t a mess mainly in the eternal fight, even Hell has its glitches and one of them is directed towards their ruler.

And here I need an Avenger… Alastor, the warrior with the golden spear. The Fighter for his master.

Alastor is a demonic evil spirit, very dedicated to the one who gives him a chance and entrusts him with a task that combines fighting as well as satiating his bloodthirst. However, it shouldn’t be forgotten, that this demon, as civilized as he can act, is still hard to assess.

Unknown and hidden he wandered among his fellow demon siblings, acting submissive and obedient, hiding his true nature and looks, protected by his master and commander.

He is not a fallen angel, like the Hellish Noblesse… he is a pure demon, but recognized by his Master, he is a secret weapon, for an emergency such as the situation that has occurred within the ‘Council Of Twelve’ series at this time. War… a war, worse than anyone on Earth will ever know.

Do humans know there is a war being fought among them? No

Do humans know there is the fight Good versus Evil still going on? No

Do humans feel there is something happening at this moment? Yes

They can feel the calamities, they experience the tsunamis, the earthquakes, the volcanoes, the hurricanes, tornadoes, the heat and cold, the fire, the temperature craziness…

In the meantime, the war goes on, the Archangels and Divine Warriors are fighting the darkness, the fear, the horror, the fire waves, the demonic influence, the legions of Hell with all their might.

There might be hope… but at this moment the odds aren’t good.

Do humans know that the Good side is fighting for them? No

Do humans know that their Creator, their Father, their Lord is sending them His angels to protect them?

Only the Believers… – only the believers…

Soul Taker Secrets – Angel Wings

The Council of Twelve series is a YA fantasy/paranormal romance series where we meet celestial beings. The first book in the series is ‘Soul Taker’, where we meet the Council of Twelve, the most powerful individuals in existence, and the protagonist, Katie, a Guardian Angel-to-be. In the ‘Soul Taker Secrets’ category, I reveal the one or other ‘inside’ knowledge about The Council of Twelve, their consorts, and in this case, a little of their physical secrets.


Picture courtesy of https://academy.allaboutbirds.org/feathers-article/

Wing feathers

The wing feathers specialized for flight are characterized by uniform windproof surfaces, or vanes, on either side of the central shaft that is created by an interlocking microstructure. Also called remiges, these feathers are asymmetric with a shorter, less flexible leading edge that prevents mid-air twisting.

Amazon Parrot wing feather illustration by Andrew Leach

Tail feathers

Most tail feathers, or rectrices, feature an interlocking microstructure similar to wing feathers. Arranged in a fan shape, these feathers support precision steering in flight. Typically, birds have six pairs of feathers on the tail, which display increasing levels of asymmetry toward the outer pairs. In some birds, tail feathers have evolved into showy ornaments that are useless in flight.

Ruffed Grouse tail feather illustration by Andrew Leach

Contour feathers

Contour feathers are what you see covering the bird’s body and streamlining its shape. Arranged in an overlapping pattern like shingles, the waterproof tips are exposed to the elements, and the fluffy bases are tucked close to the body. Sometimes brilliantly colored or uniformly drab, contour feathers can also help the bird show off or stay camouflaged. Contour feathers on the wing, called coverts, shape it into an efficient airfoil by smoothing over the region where the flight feathers attached to the bone.

Helmeted Guineafowl contour feather illustration by Andrew Leach

Semiplume

Mostly hidden beneath other feathers on the body, semiplumes have a developed central rachis but no hooks on the barbules, creating a fluffy insulating structure.

Northern Cardinal semiplume feather illustration by Andrew Leach

Down

Similar to semiplumes with an even looser branching structure but little or no central rachis, down feathers, are relatively short and positioned closest to the body where they trap body heat.

Canada Goose down feather illustration by Andrew Leach

Filoplume

Short, simple feathers with few barbs, filoplumes function like mammal whiskers to sense the position of the contour feathers.

Common Poorwill filoplume feather illustration by Andrew Leach

Bristle

Bristles are the simplest feathers, with a stiff rachis that usually lacks barb branches. Most commonly found on the head, bristles may protect the bird’s eyes and face.

Domestic Chicken bristle feather illustration by Andrew Leach

(Source: https://academy.allaboutbirds.org/feathers-article/)


Now that we learned about the different feathers in the wings let’s look at the different wing-shapes.

Picture courtesy of https://worldbuilding.stackexchange.com/

In this picture, we can see the wing shaping feathers and their functionality.


Now, bird and angel wings basically have the same biological structure with one main difference. Their mobility is far more extended to guarantee the optimal function since, of course, angels don’t have tail feathers to brake, steer, and keep the balance of the wing carrier. And of course, they are much more reliable, due to the weight they have to lift.

Picture courtesy of Freepik.com

Research For ‘The Council Of Twelve’ Series

When I got the idea to my ‘Council Of Twelve’ series, I considered doing some research, start with finding ‘experts.’ I talked to two people I considered experts: a nun and a monk.

Unfortunately, both were not as good as experts as I had hoped. The nun is an amazing, wonderful personality with a huge golden heart, selfless, helpful, pious – and an avid reader and a big fan of fantasy books. I could not ask even one of the many questions I had; she didn’t stop talking, telling me about all the fantastic books she already read. By listening to her, I had the impression, in her imagination, she actually wrote my entire series. It was an enjoyable, interesting afternoon, but I got home with nothing than a headache.

The priest was a different kind of expert. He answered most of my questions with quotes directly out of the bible, and he was not at all a fan of my idea for that series. He found, the fight Good versus Evil should be left to our Lord. I can only agree with that, but I had not planned to single-handedly fight Hades and the entire Underworld! I was only planning to write a book, for Heaven’s sake, and we’re not talking about a non-fiction reality report. We’re talking about a fantasy book series. Towards the end of that conversation, I had the impression if I ever wrote that ‘Council Of Twelve’ series, my ‘expert’ would do anything to get me excommunicated and not only that; I would be going directly to the Catholic ‘jail’ and my soul would be grilling in the inferno for all eternity.

I cured that headache too and decided to write the series anyway, even without Father Thomas’ blessing.

The wonderful thing about fantasy books, as compared to history books (or all non-fiction, of course) is, that the creation of worlds, characters, and magic does not need as much research as the book that entwines around existing facts. The Council Of Twelve series bases on values, the Christian values I grew up with, and a few of the characters that cement my beliefs.

Since I now got the few already existing characters, I started adding up with more figures and creatures on the good side…

However, the evil side needed more of my attention. In my book, it exists, but it’s not like I’m an expert on that side. Therefore I went on a research crusade. I needed demons… I needed to ‘build’ a picture of the evil side. And I had to build antagonists…. not one, but uncountable ones.

An inexhaustible source of information in my case was ‘Wikipedia’. I got quite a few lists from them. Theological Demons and their classification, Demonology, a list of fictional demons, and a list of legendary creatures. Occasionally these lists helped me while writing.

But what helped me the most was the List of Demons in the Ars Goetia.

It not only gives the name of the respective demon but also its look, what kind of demon it is, what command it’s under, and the legions of minions under its control. Now…

I know that the evil side exists, just as I know the good side exists. That is rooted in the beliefs I grew up with. But I’m writing fantasy books for young adults. I have to keep it simple. This list is not a fact list… I, therefore, permit myself the freedom to use the respective creature I need – and I don’t feel very guilty adjusting the demons a bit in order to be useful for my current scene.

With a little bit of my own spicy humor, I allowed myself to object the common existing demon-name-lists by leaving the fallen Archangel Lucifer’s name as it was and positioning him on the top of the seven thrones of Hell. Experts on that might kick my butt for that, but no matter how many ‘bad guys’ there are, in the series, I’m working on fighting them. I figure, one more isn’t that much of a drama.

Also, I did not forget that Evil tempts with softness, with the illusion of love and with beauty… Demons in my books rarely look like leathery wings carrying, flying, and walking horror creatures…

Lucifer is a beautiful as a personified sin… and so are his minions in the form we humans can understand… But when they are home… where they live… in their place and their environment… that’s different. Then the entire extent of the evilness they hold becomes obvious – and visible.

 

 

Picture courtesy of Google.com