Rain teems down and pours through the ruined roof in rivulets. I huddle against the back wall on the rickety wooden bedframe. I claw at the threadbare blanket that covers my legs. It’s my only source of warmth and has been for as long as I can remember. Pa hasn’t got a lot of money for things like blankets. And food.
The blazing ball of fiery, white light that crashed through the roof with the deafening sound of thunder begins to dim. I peep out from the blanket but the light is still too bright to look at without searing my eyes. I look away. The imprint of the white glow fills my eyes as I look at the blanket.
Tonight’s storm rages and squalls. It used to rage and squall outside the shack but now – thanks to this blazing ball – it squalls in my bedroom. I have nothing of value so it doesn’t matter that the rain and wind tear into my room. My hair is knotted anyway so what folly is there if my blonde curls snarl about in the raging tempest.
I take another look at the brilliant radiance and this time I can look for a few seconds before having to blink away painful tears. There’s a definite shape in the centre of all that blinding light. The wind screams through the devastated roof. The rain pours down into my room. I have to know what did this.
I swing one foot out of bed. It’s freezing. I shield my face with my hands and try to peer out through my splayed fingers. The wind roars but isn’t loud enough to mask the small moan and the swish of feathers.
I step on the balls of my feet across the rough wooden floor and it creaks worse than before. The integrity of the whole house has been compromised. As rain drips down into my eyes I blink rapidly and peer into the light. The shape manifests itself into something my mind can understand.
It’s a man.
He’s kneeling on the floor and the boards beneath him are cracked and bowed. His chest, arms and torso are bare and I see now that the light seems to be emanating from him. From his very body. His head is bowed and a shock of black hair crowns his head. I cannot see his face and I don’t know if I want to.
From his back protrude two massive, pure white wings that droop down beside him and lay in the debris of my ruined bedroom. Even sodden and damp they are still the most beautiful things I have ever laid eyes on. Tears spring back to my eyes though they’re not tears of pain. These are the tears of my soul.
I make a quiet noise and somehow he hears me above the raging wind. He hears me and raises his head. The angel looks at me. I have never known utter peace before. I have never felt a more perfect moment in tme. My head spins. My blood sings. My soul trembles as he slowly raises himself to his feet. I ache at his beauty. I want to claw my eyes out instead of having to stand another moment looking at his utter perfection.
He crosses the floor and those glorious wings sweep along behind him. My fingers burn to touch just a single, white feather for only one brief second. And then he’s standing before me, looking down at me. He’s so close I can feel the warmth radiating from him. I can feel the light burning from his body into mine. It hurts so wonderfully.
He looks into me with eyes that have looked on the face of God and I weep at his beauty. He slides one finger beneath my chin and lifts my face up to look at him. The pain of his presence is exquisite. He leans down and brushes his lips across mine. I taste the universe on his lips.
And suddenly the squalling wind is muted. The rain continues to teem down but it stops at the roof above my head. The sealed, whole, intact roof. I blink at the sudden dreary darkness of my bedroom. The angel is gone. My room is returned to me whole and empty.
Bereft but for one single white feather that lays on the floor by my feet.
I sink to my knees and weep.
I am a ruin.
*Inspired by Sue Vincent’s #Writephoto – Derelict