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Chapter 1

The images in the bright pool flickered past Apollyon’s eyes at lightning speed but he could see them all, could bring each into focus and pause there a moment to understand what was happening in the scene. He had watched over the mortals since eternity began, had watched the world change and forget his kind.

No one believed in angels anymore.

And his master had not called him forth from the bottomless pit in Hell in many long centuries.

Yet Apollyon waited for the call to come, faithful and patient, committed to his duty even as others around him chose to live by their own commands. Many of his fellow warriors had softened and fallen for mortal women, their devotion wavering and their commitment altering to their love. He would do no such thing. He had no interest in mortals.

His dark blue gaze darted around the silvery pool, following the history it was recording, stopping a moment on images that interested him. Wars. Death. Bloodshed. It was something that never changed. One day, his master would call him and Earth would know the true meaning of destruction.

The pool cast pale light on him as he crouched near it with his elbows resting on his knees, his hands dangling in front of him. The intricate gold metalwork on the black greaves protecting his shins and the vambraces around his forearms caught the light and shone.

With a sigh, Apollyon unfurled his mighty black feathered wings and stood. He stretched, causing the chest plate of his armour to rise as he lifted his arms, and then stared up at the endless black above him. The fires of Hell burned at his back. Their smoke filled the cavern, making him long to go to Earth. It had been eternity since he had left the pit and spread his wings, breathing the refreshing air and feeling it beat against him. He ached to soar above the cities again, unseen and unknown, and to speak with the angels that walked on Earth and watched over the mortals.

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