The angels dropped from the sky like gigantic white birds.
“Oh, crap,” said the cat.
The fairies and some of the Fallen rose to meet them. The front door of the bookstore slammed open and pages flew into the street, morphing into heroes from every book where a hero was needed. Heroes from every country, each holding a weapon from their story, joined the battle. Men and women alike, witches, wizards and thugs, all there to stand with the Fallen.
“I get the book thing now,” said the cat. “Harry Dresden, Sandman Slim and Robin Hood?”
The man nodded and smiled broadly. “They’re friends. All of them.”
The cat shrieked and hurled himself into the air, bringing down an angel already splattered with blood. A passing witched, pointed her finger, said a few words, and the angel, held tightly in his claws, took his last breath. The fighting was brutal, fast and furious. The noise was horrific but the power hungry angels didn’t stand a chance.
Dead Boy, from Simon Green’s books, stopped to pet Pippen. “Long time no see, Pip,” he said. “Suzy Shotgun is here, don’t forget to say hello.”
The cat meowed and head butted Dead Boy’s calf, as the war raged on. The power hungry angels, who had come to slay the Fallen, littered the ground, their eyes blank, their wings crushed beneath the feet of those still standing. Swords clanged against each other, the wounded fought on and then, like the last page of a book, the fighting was over. The Fallen lowered their swords and looked around. The angels who had come to kill them, were dead, their bodies burning to ash where they lay. The wind picked up and blew the ash away, leaving the Fallen, the heroes, the fairies, and a cat standing alone in the street.
The heroes, politely accepted the gratitude heaped upon them, and went back to their stories. The fairies, surrounded the man and the cat jumped into his rms.
“I don’t know how to thank you,” said the man, to the Fallen. “We have won this battle but we all know it won’t be the last. The greedy and power hungry will always exist. And the only way to stay free is to fight, even though we are peaceful beings. We don’t want war but we can’t stand like sheep to be slaughtered and leave those who cannot defend themselves to be turned into slaves. Today we fought for freedom and as much as I would like to believe that doing the right thing will always win out, you and I both know that isn’t true. The war between good and evil is not about heaven and hell, it’s about what we do to each other. The evil is having power over another, whether angel, human, or other species. Whether over air, water or land. Hate, greed, inequality and power over others, that’s what we fight to stop. And we will continue to fight because we are all that stands between freedom and enslavement. Every Fallen who fought today has struck a blow for that freedom and I thank you.”
The angels nodded, shook hands, hugged, slapped backs, bumped fists and spoke softly, as they began to disperse. One of the Fallen approached the man. “So, it takes a war for us to see each other again?”
“Uh,” stammered the man.
“Call me. My number is the same,” she said, her eyes sparkling. “We’ll have dinner.”
“Meooooow,” said the cat.
“I will,” said the man. “Promise.”
Henry was so happy to see the man that she fainted. She came to, squeaked, and ran in circles until she finally settled down and went to sleep in his hand.
The books were back on their shelves, except for War and Peace, which was found behind the counter and Nancy Drew, which was nowhere to be found at all.
“Well, she probably manifested and realized she wasn’t in a mystery, so she left,” said the cat. “I mean that’s logical, right?”
“I’m going to be myself from now on,” said the man. “I’m not going to age any longer and I’m going to set up a network, so that the Fallen can stay in touch.”
“Good ideas,” said the cat. “I’m going home.”
The man looked away.
“FINE,” said the cat. “I guess I can stay for awhile longer. I mean you can barely tie your shoes without me. I’m amazed that you lasted as long as you did, pretending to be human. And I kind of like being a cat, there benefits, you know.”
“You are welcome to stay here as long as you like.”
“I know that,” snickered the cat, “but tell me about the raving beauty you used to date. Is that still a thing? You gonna do dinner with her. If I recall, you were madly in love with her.”
“I’ll get you a bowl of milk,” laughed the man. “No matter what form you take, Pip, you’re always the same.”
“What’s wrong with that? Hey, she’s really hot, for an angel I mean. You know that, don’t you? I mean come on, what are you waiting for?” asked the cat, following the man into the kitchen.
“He’s really a bad, kitty,” giggled one of the fairies, watching the cat.
“I like him too,” said another.
“He’s really nice,” added a small blue fairy. “He let’s me rid on his back.”
“Well,” said a lovely green fairy, “we are family after all.”
“Do you think the man has a girlfriend?” whispered the first fairy?
“Maybe. The cat thinks so,” said the second.
“I think life around here is going to get a lot more interesting,” said the third.
“So do we,” said the others, excitedly. “So do we.”
Nancy Drew’s Clock Tower book was found under the kitchen sink. Just thought you might want to know.