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'A Kingdom of Seraphs'

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'A Kingdom of Seraphs'

“Why the hell.” She spits, “Do you have literal wings.”

“Look, I need you to calm down-”

Don’t tell me to calm down!”

She snaps, “What the hell are you?”

I should probably explain how I got here, shouldn’t I?

My name is Emyrs, or Emmy for short – and don’t ask why my parents named me that. I don’t know either. I’m 17, in college.

And I’m a seraph.

No, seraphs aren’t angels. We’re just one type of supernatural creature in a world that has hundreds, although we do all have something in common: we have to hide from humans. Normally, this is quite easy to do; we’re pretty much the same anatomically.

Apart from the wings. They’re pretty hard to miss. But even they can be hidden, folded away inside ourselves. It’s one of the first things we’re taught to do, that any supernatural creature is taught to do.

Blend in.

But, because apparently real life also follows the plot of books, there’s a group of humans who secretly dedicate themselves to killing as many supernaturals as they can. It’s a classic cliché, isn’t it? You have your monsters, and you have your monster hunters, both trying to hide their existence from an oblivious third party whilst hating each other’s guts.

And now you’ve got some basic context, here’s how I ended up nearly bleeding out in a college car park.

It was 6:00, and I’d stayed behind to catch up on some work. As I was winding my way around the buildings, attempting to find the one gate that wasn’t locked, something shuffled behind me. I tensed – another of the first things we’re taught is to always be on guard – before relaxing. I was being idiotic. Monster hunters wouldn’t be in a place like this.

But apparently I was wrong because at that moment, something grabbed me from behind. I shook off my backpack, wings bursting out of my back, six white feathery shields guarding me from whoever was there. Something sharp and fierce dug into my back and I screamed, the harsh sound echoing in the air and hanging in the darkness around me.

“HEY!” A voice yells. The attacker’s breath hitches, and I crash to the floor, landing hard on the stones with another cry. Footsteps crunch on gravel as whoever it was flees, but the sound continues from the opposite direction.

“Oh my god.” The voice says weakly. Then there are hands on my shoulders, pulling me up, steadying me on my feet and-


“Ow!” My eyes fly open, hand going to my cheek as pain blossoms, hot and crimson over the dull sting of my back.

“Thank god.” The voice mutters, “I thought you’d passed out completely.”

Something shuffles, fabric brushing over skin and a figure appears in my vision. Whoever it was must have saved me, and –

          Hang on. I know this person.


“Hm?” She looks up from where she’s fiddling with a dark green bag with a white cross on it, “Yeah, it’s me. I stayed back to study and was just leaving when I heard you yell. What happened?”

“No idea.”

“Okay.” She looks up from the first aid kit, stares at me, and frowns.

“I can sort your back out, but not like this.” She elaborates before I can ask what’s wrong, “Can you stand?”

“I can try.”

She takes one of my arms, and I use the other to prop myself up against the wall as I struggle to my feet. The world swims before my eyes for a long moment, and then when i have clear vision again, I see that Chloe’s moved. She’s taken several steps back and is staring, wide eyed, at something just behind my –

Oh. Oh no. 

“What. The. Hell.” She stands there, staring at me. Alarm bells scream in my head, blaring abort, abort, abort as if this girl didn’t save my life and drag me back through our college gates. And apparently, its only now she notices I have literal wings. Giant, pearly white ones with ruby eyes that blink dazedly every once in a while.

I’m about to open my mouth, when she continues, “Where the hell did they come from? And were you seriously strutting round college all day in cosplay?

Well. That…actually makes more sense than them being real. Cosplay. Why the hell haven’t I thought of that before. Yeah, I’m going as Benji from Hell Followed With Us, or a Good Omens OC. Or something. Literally anything. At all.

God, I’m an idiot.

“Okay, anyway, try and stay still. Let me take a look at your injury” she instructs, walking round me and crouching down. A zip scrapes open, and crinkly plastic crackles, and I assume she’s going through her kit.

“It’s really close to the wings” I hear her murmur. Then, her voice grows louder as she asks, “Do these normally scratch you?” As she speaks, she pulls on one of the wings slightly.

“Are you really so dedicated to your story that you’ll-”

Something brushes the cut right where it meets the base of my wings and I screech, a holy, inhuman sound that rings of the bathroom tiles. My wings beat against my back, lifting me into the air slightly and forcing the threat away from me.

“What the-” From my left, Chloe stumbles back into my line of sight, chest heaving as she backs up against the sinks.

“What the hell?” she spits. “Are they real? Do you have literal wings?”

“Look, I need you to calm down-”

Don’t tell me to calm down” she snaps, “What the hell are you?”

Bringing up my hands, I hold them out, palm forward, and slowly move away from her, wincing when my back smarts.  “It’s complicated. But I promise you, I’m no more dangerous than I was five minutes ago. Please. Just breathe.”

The girl shuts her eyes, takes a few shaky breaths in, and then looks back up at me.

"You’re injured” she mutters, almost to herself. There’s still fear in her eyes – why wouldn’t there be – but determination is slowly trickling between the gaps in the nervousness. Her breathing slows, face settles into a mask.

“You’re injured” she repeats, “Let me see. Although you might have to tell me how to treat it.”

“Just like any other injury.”

She beckons me forward, and I stand in the middle of the room as she slowly cleans and stitches up the cut.

“Come and find me in a few days if you’re not planning to tell anyone else.” She tells me as she packs up her first aid kit, “I’ll check on it, and see if the stitches need removing. Unless you have some kind of freaky healing factor?”

“I’m not Spider-Man.” I laugh tiredly, “I’ll heal at the same rate as you.”

“But you are something.” Chloe turns to face me, “something not human.”

A sigh forces its way out of my throat as two sides fight desperately in my mind. I shouldn’t do this, I really shouldn’t do this, I should just swear her to silence and let her move on…

“I’ll tell when you check my injuries.” I try. She raises one curved eyebrow.

“I just did check your injuries. And patched them up. For free. So pay the rent and start talking.”

So I do. I tell her that I’m a Seraph. That people are bound to be trying to hunt me down for sport, and that I’m used to it, but I don’t normally go down that quickly in a fight.

“Okay. I’m going to make the daring choice to believe you.  But I want proof.”

“That’s it?” I choke, “You believe me just like that?”

She nods, “Now come on. I’ll walk with you to the bus stop.”

“I’m not gonna keel over from one cut!”

“Really? Cause that’s exactly what you did earlier.”

And we walk off, into the night.

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