Angel's Shield

Angel's Shield by Erin M. Leaf

Book: Angel's Shield by Erin M. Leaf Read Free Book Online
Authors: Erin M. Leaf
weapons.
    I wish I’d had a weapon, she thought, glancing at the remains of her house. A pang of
grief caught her off guard. All of her memories of her grandmother were in that
house, as well as the only photos she had of her mother and her father. That
was all gone now.
    Jeremiel shoved the phone into his pocket violently enough to
distract her from her dark thoughts. She stilled her hand for a moment. “What
happened?” Haniel’s muscles knotted tighter beneath her fingers, almost as if
he already knew what Jeremiel was going to say. His face, however, gave no
indication of cognizance. He was still lost in the pain.
    “Demons are massing on Castle Archangel,” he said shortly.
    “What does that mean?”
    “It means we need to get there as quickly as possible. They need
anyone who can swing a blade to help defend our home and our People.” He shook
his head, blue eyes dark. “If the castle falls, so does our ability to stand
against the darkness. The stones of that place are in our blood. If it fell,
its loss would demoralize all the remaining angels and probably spur a
mass-fading.”
    Charmeine stared at him, aghast. “You mean they would kill
themselves.”
    He nodded. “Yeah.”
    “We can’t let that happen,” she said, slowly. But what would they
do about Haniel? She and Jeremiel could fly, but he couldn’t, not anymore.
    “No, we can’t let that happen,” Haniel said, his voice tight with
agony.
    She whipped her head down. He was still not well, but the look in
his eyes told her he’d heard every word. “Shh. Don’t worry about it,” she said,
trying to soothe him.
    “You’ll have to leave me behind,” he ground out.
    “What? No!” Jeremiel clenched his fists. “I would never do that to
you. Never. And neither would Charmeine.”
    Charmeine agreed. “There has to be another way.” She couldn’t
fathom how Haniel managed to speak. Clearly, the pain was still intense,
judging by his body’s involuntary twitches. She wished she could take the agony
away.
    “We need to defend our people,” he said, gasping as his muscles
cramped again. “They need our shield. You have to go.” He panted for
air. “Too… important.”
    Jeremiel shook his head. “The shield won’t work without you.”
    Haniel grunted, straining to speak, but Charmeine interrupted him,
laying her fingers on his mouth.
    “We’ll carry you.” She looked up at Jeremiel, sliding her palm
down to cup Haniel’s cheek. Stubble tickled her palm. “We can carry him.”
    “Crazy,” Haniel gasped, wheezing.
    Charmeine was about to argue, but when she looked at his face, she
realized he was laughing. Laughing!
    “She’s right. We’ll carry you.” Jeremiel rubbed his face. “As soon
as this episode is over.”
    “It’s easing,” Haniel breathed. His shoulders suddenly relaxed and
Charmeine had to scramble to keep touching him. She ended up crouched over him.
His hazel eyes blinked up at her and he managed to snag one of her curls in his
fingers. “Beautiful.”
    She smiled, a rush of relief flooding through her. “You’re going
to be okay.”
    “That was a lot shorter than the last one,” Jeremiel said softly.
He sounded as relieved as she felt.
    “It was.” Haniel took a deep breath. “Ahhh, almost better. I don’t
know why it was shorter. I don’t think I care.”
    “Maybe God answered my prayers,” Charmeine murmured.
    Jeremiel and Haniel exchanged glances. “Stranger things have
happened,” he said, holding Haniel’s gaze.
    ****
    “This is crazy,” Haniel said, laughing. Charmeine held his right
arm, and Jeremiel had his left. They floated about five feet above ground. The
best part was that he could still feel the winds in his soul. He hadn’t lost
any of his instincts about flying, just the physical ability.
    “I don’t understand why you can’t float. If our wings only serve
to direct us, why can’t you at least move off the ground?” Charmeine said,
swaying a little in the breeze.
    “I

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