Ashes and fire, the two combined were everywhere. All surfaces were covered with a fine, warm layer of it. If they weren't still caught in the fiery blaze of the flames, that is.
It was so sad, seeing such a great race fall, taking many others with it.
Yet they did it to themselves. They brought along their own demise, an apocalypse of sorts. It was an Armageddon that no one could have predicted; no ancient Roman prophet, no Mayan calendar, not even Earth's finest scientist.
As I looked out over the remains of what once was New York City, I reflect on all that has happened in the past few days. An entire race, wiped out. All signs of life, gone.
Perching myself on the charred, damaged ruins of what once was the Empire State Building, I can see for thousands of miles around me. It is mostly all gone, obliterated by their own stupidity. Symbolic icons, relics of the world, things that had once been cherished, have all been destroyed by this Hell on Earth.
The adage was somewhat ironic. There had been true Hell here; the destruction was made by humans, of course, but I knew well enough the ways of Satan. He had started this all, centuries ago, planting the seeds of evil and hatred. The humans had followed and used it to their own devices.
I chuckled to myself as I watched things fall apart.
The once proud Statue of Liberty was now slowly sinking into the harbor of Ellis Island. The tips of her crown and the ever-burning torch were all that peeked out from underneath the waves.
Far from here, the Liberty Bell had way more than a large crack in it. The entire thing was now a melted, metallic pool underneath the place it once stood. Everyone that had been under it when it melted was now kept in a flawless bronze and copper cast. They were all perfectly preserved, unlike most of the people in North and South America.
Even farther still, the Golden Gate Bridge lies in sections underneath the Pacific Ocean, along with a great deal of the cars that were on it when it crumbled. The cables and wires that held the bridge together are snapped and sparking still, despite the fact that most electricity has been lost. They suspend there in the air, making the occasional voltage noise.
Of course none of these landmarks would have survived! The humans were all gone, not even a single one of them alive out of the four billion that once roamed this earth. Even if the monuments hadn't perished, what purpose would they serve? They meant nothing to us angels and saints; none of us wanted a reminder of what had once been.
I fluttered my wings and hastily sped away from here. I could no longer stand to watch the smoldering, smoking rubble.
In a short time, I found myself in Europe.
It was so funny, one half of the world had perished in fire and the other half in ice. The entire section of the Americas, and most of what was the east coast of Asia, had burnt to the ground. But here in the rest of Eurasia and Africa, everything was perfectly preserved in miles and miles of clear ice.
Here in what once had been France, I slide across thick sheets of ice. I can see straight down, right through the miles of ice. Beneath me are several corpses of people struggling to escape the icy, powerful tidal waves as they rush at them, nearly faster than the speed of light. It wasn't as if they had any chance at escaping the waves; as soon as the water hit them, it instantly froze over.
The angel Gabriel had told all of us that they were perfectly preserved, and he did not lie in the least bit. He and I had done exactly as we were told.
Most of the angels and saints had sufficed with his tale of what we had done and descriptions of what everything looked like now. They were all too weak-hearted to see what remained of the race that had worshipped us for centuries.
But ah, I was the exception. I knew I would come to regret the extinction of the humans, and I did, despite the fact that they had brought the Lord's wrath upon themselves. They had become so lax, so vulgar and sinful in their ways that I could easily understand why they had to go. The entire race had been corrupted and had to be destroyed.
Still, I was no less mournful. I had served my purpose as the Angel of Destruction; I had done as was the Lord's plan. Yet by assisting Brother Gabriel, Angel of Death, I had turned my heart into ice very much like the kind I stood on now. By sending the fire and ice upon the humans, I had done irreconcilable damage. Though it had all been done in His name, my duty had been to hurt rather than to save.
What we had done condemned us both as Dark Angels, the Fallen. I knew in my heart that I was no longer pure, and the same went for Gabriel. Yet he showed no remorse, not even a fraction of regret for what we had done.
For the first time in the eternity of my existence, I began to cry.
The tears fell down onto the ice beneath me. Directly under me were the grand spires of the Notre Dame de Paris. I could see my likeness, among many others, in the artfully crafted stained glass windows of the church.
I began to doubt the Lord's plan, another first in my existence.
I looked up into the Heavens, at all my Brothers and Sisters, all of the angels and saints waiting for me to return. The Holy Virgin Mary gazed at me with warm brown eyes; Jesus bit his lower lip, trying to hold back emotions as he looked at his earthly home, Jerusalem.
Tears continued to fall from my eyes. Suddenly I knew what I had to do. Rising to my feet, I saw that my tears were melting the ice beneath me. I had a new hope, a new sense of faith in these creatures.
"Are you proud of what we have done, Gabriel?" I yelled out. "Are you happy with our work?"
My fellow angels peered down at me. Their faces were grim as they waited for Gabriel's reaction. What I had said was meant to provoke their thoughts, their feelings. It had done just that.
"What nonsense have you filled your head with now, Brother?" Gabriel called down, his voice completely nonchalant.
"No nonsense!" I yelled. "I have come to regret my actions, yet I cannot repent! I am Abbadon, but the Angel of Destruction no longer!"
Gabriel looked at me, his eyes spiteful. "Very well,"
I turned my back on them, all of them. None would go against Gabriel, much less God. I was now alone, but I knew what I had to do. I now had a new purpose.
The tears continued to fall, melting the ice even further. The spires of the Notre Dame de Paris were beginning to show through the ice. That's when I knew.
From the Dark Angel's tears, the human race shall be reborn.
Word Count: 1,234