Book 1, Chapter 10: Checkmate
Lucifer stood in front of the Pearly Gates. Phase three had begun. He set off towards the Palace, his home that was no longer his home. A few angels remained here and there, left in the wake of Cain’s trail of destruction. They shuddered at the sight of him.
They cried with fear, for he oozed with power. His transition hadn’t cost him the power of the red realm. It was because he had kept his calm and planted the roots of his soul into the Soul cache of the realm.
He was now one with the realm. He was the realm itself. Unlike Satan, he had maintained composure and arrived on the blue realm in his full power. He smiled at his superior intellect.
He went around the entire plain. He rode without slowing down or stopping. He was attacked by disheveled beings, out of fear mostly. He paid them no heed. He kept dodging and kept riding.
On the other side of Eden, Destruction and War fought each other. Calamity’s horse was ready. On this day, Lucifer had invoked the power of four Ancients – Destruction, Judgment, War and Calamity. He had no need for Love and Salvation. Lord Creation, his Father, had already turned tail and ran.
At the end of the day, when Heaven fell, he would claim Calamity’s power for himself. He did not worry for it, for there was no one else who would do it here, as it would claim Heaven as sacrifice. That was the price of donning the mantle of Calamity.
Lucifer was now the master of the Ancients! He would rule all three realms. And as the master of all, he would be able to command the All-Father to join with his cause.
For many hours he kept riding. He was attacked by angels, elders, Archangels, even lowly beings and stray souls. Everyone feared his power but no could recognize him in this altered form. Every once in a while someone would land a hit on him, but he paid them no heed and continued upon his path.
All Eden was in chaos at his action. He caused them fear beyond measure. He created mass hysteria; an evil-looking being of ultimate power, riding around the Heaven. Angels panicked everywhere. But his target was yet to appear.
Raphael finally came. He chased Lucifer. Lucifer rode away and Raphael followed in flight. Lucifer led him away from the Palace. Then they saw the huge burst of red energy that marked the end of battle between Azrael and Cain.
Cain had served his purpose. And Lucifer had played his part. He had kept the angelic army, and Raphael, occupied so no one would interfere in Cain’s battle. Lucifer had been confident Cain would defeat Azrael.
Lucifer stopped. Raphael landed before him. His eyes widened with fear and sadness as he recognized who this bringer of chaos was. Lucifer smirked at him.
‘Phase three has been a wonderful success, dear brother. Go comfort Azrael now’, he smirked.
Then he vanished.
Lucifer reappeared at the Pearly Gates, at the same point in time when he had appeared before this; in front of him stood phase-three-Lucifer (or Lucifer III). It was time to begin phase four.
As Lucifer III started to ride, Lucifer IV took flight. His plan had succeeded. He had ensured victory. Where he might not have been enough to win the war, two Lucifers would ensure victory.
Lucifer’s red realm Soul cache was exclusively his. The beings of blue realm were incompatible receptors. They already had fragments of the blue realm Soul which repelled the red realm Soul, thus leaving Lucifer’s power intact.
He had used time travel to make himself and his past self appear at the same time in Eden. Effectively, he had doubled the cache of the red realm Soul. Every time he changed the past, he created an alternate reality. Since he was from an alternate reality to this one, his soul did not redistribute. He had essentially doubled his power.
Lucifer III would run around the realm for hours. Enough time for Lucifer IV to slay everyone else and find the All-Father. With double his power, he was invincible.
The real war for heaven was now beginning.
Michael looked out of the window to see the Tree of Life ablaze with red fire. The Garden of Eden burned. Pools of blood were everywhere.
It was the dance of death. Limbs, cut and torn, lay everywhere. Impaled corpses hung on spikes and spears. The smell of burning flesh filled all existence. Minor angels ran amok, crying for their lives. It was chaos on a level Michael could never even imagine.
The sky glowed red like blood. The ground was painted red with blood. War had come to Eden. Angelic weapons lay about, sticking out of corpses and sometimes, bodies of running angels.
All weaponry was made of orichalcum. They all bore silver emblems, emblems of a five-point star. It shone through the smoke in the shape of a star, a Morningstar perhaps…
He froze. A thought flickered in his mind and a terrible feeling of helplessness, loss and betrayal came over him. He spread his wings and jumped out of the window frantically looking about for who he thought was here.
No, it couldn’t be him! He would never!
The sky was torn with the shriek of an Archangel, pink blood rained on Michael and the impaled body of his brother fell from the sky at his feet.
Tears in his eyes, choking on his own blood, Raphael lifted a trembling hand in a gesture of farewell towards the one who had claimed his soul. A soul that even Death had been denied claim to. Wondrous was the might of his end-bringer, for he had surpassed the power of Death.
The Giver of Life took his last breath while he welcomed and said farewell at the same time to the one who took his life.
Humbled at his mortality, Michael brought himself to look above at the one who had brought War, Death, Calamity and Judgment to the Garden of Eden.
His legs trembled under his own weight, his arms shook with fear, anger and wonder, his face covered with tears of blood, his teeth clenched to the point to breaking, his wings quivered, as he saw his dearest sibling floating in the sky…
Lucifer Morningstar had returned for vengeance!
‘I return, brother’, purred Lucifer as he landed before Michael, ‘I return for my throne.’
‘Never’, spat Michael, ‘you are not welcome here, banished one. You will leave at this moment, or I shall forget you were once my brother’.
‘I still am’, said Lucifer lightly, ‘and do not think me weak or a fool. I wouldn’t declare war on Heaven unless I thought I could win, would I?’
Michael spread his wings and jumped back ten feet. His weapon, a double-bladed gleaming diamond sword, appeared in his hand. ‘Then prepare for your punishment, intruder’, he said, with eyes gleaming with tears.
Lucifer held up his hand. ‘You must let me kill you brother. It is the only way. The end is coming. Father is responsible for all of this. Had He not created the humans, we would all have been happy. I warned Him, I warned Him the best I could.
‘I’ve tried, the humans can’t be destroyed. They keep coming back, He did something with the energies of Creation, messed them up. The only other way to stop apocalypse is to reduce the number of other beings, starting with the powerful ones, namely you.’ Lucifer twisted words to bend Michael to cause.
‘WHAT?’ said Michael, ‘Commit genocide? Are you out of your mind? What apocalypse do you speak of?’ and suddenly he thought of his brothers, ‘And where are our brethren?’
‘My vision, brother’, replied Lucifer, ‘Surely you know that the Fates never lie. I foresaw this. That is why I rebelled. Father just had to go and release His new invention into the Creation, a free will disperser; it would be the doom of us all!’
‘I do not know what apocalypse or vision you speak of,’ Michael reasoned, ‘but brother, was it not free will that allowed you to rebel? If there really is an end coming, then free will is just what we need. Let us help you, we can restore all this, Father can turn back time. Tell me, please, where are our brothers?’ His voice cracked.
Lucifer smirked, ‘You do not believe your own words Michael. You know Father is gone. Our brothers are slain. They are no more. Their soul has been consumed, ironically, by you, since you are now the new All-Father’.
Michael did not understand the significance of Lucifer’s last words, but the news of his brothers’ death broke him. He knew Lucifer was right about their Father being gone. There would be no more rewinding of time.
His body shuddered, he felt pain and sorrow like never before and he let out all his frustrations in a booming shout that rang across Creation.
His eyes were bowls of white fire. The ground shook when he opened his mouth and his voice boomed over Lucifer, bound by his essence of forgiveness to give him another chance, Michael spoke, ‘MURDERER! Speak your tale; present your reasons before I strike you down for desecrating the House of God. I shall not warn you again!’
Lucifer faltered. He could not bring himself to attack the one he had loved the most. Even after all this, Michael was willing to hear him out. He decided to speak, hoping to buy some time while he tried to convince himself to murder Michael.
‘And that is how we arrive to this moment, the end of phase four’, said Lucifer, finishing his tale to Michael. ‘Now, without wasting more time, let us…’ Lucifer started, but was interrupted by the muffled yet audible sound of a spirit bomb going off.
Across the Garden, the Hall of Prophets crumbled beneath its own roof. The broken living quarters of the Palace was the only structure that remained standing in all Heaven.
Moments later, something strange happened.
Michael’s hair stood on end and turned white. His wings burned with a cosmic glow and grew larger than before. His body mass increased. He grew taller, more muscular, until he towered over Lucifer.
‘He of Justice rescinds his Fate. Rise, word of God; Rise, hand of God; Rise, an Ancient; Rise, O Lord Creation’
The prophetic voice rang again across the sky; although the meaning of these words was lost to Lucifer and Michael.
His knees buckled and he was flattened to the ground. A storm formed in the sky above him as Michael’s body literally started burning with power. His kindness bore no shadow upon his new form of the death bringer.
Lord Creation was going to deal death as judgment for the sins of Lord Judgment.
He raised his sword as Lucifer lay helpless, unable to move, frozen in his spot by unimaginable power. His body flickered, as he tried to teleport.
Suddenly, five arrows appeared on Michael’s chest. Shot from behind, he faltered for a moment. Enough time for Lucifer.
‘Apologies brother, phase five calls’ Lucifer smirked. With immense effort, he broke free and disappeared.