The Serpent’s Travels:
Short Story #1 - Sheenan

Two young males were fighting each other at the edge of a dense forest. Exchanging blows to their bodies and heads, they slowly moved deeper into the forest. The larger male seemed to have trouble following the movements of the other. He threw his fist to strike the others head. As the smaller one lowered to avoid the impact, he then moved to the side and rose back up to make impact, with his fist, to the others chin. The larger one moved back from the blow and tripped over a large root partially exposed on the ground.

As he fell onto his back, the smaller male jumped up and then lowered his legs as he came down, landing on the others chest with his knees. He immediately started to pummel his head with both fist. The larger male pushed his assailant off and crouched in wait.

“Stop this; if you attack me again I will beat you until you are dead,” the slighter one shouted.

Before he had even finished, the larger male lunged and ran toward the other. He rammed his head into his chest while at the same time wrapping his arms around his body and continuing to run. He did not stop until he drove the others body into a tree. The impact to the smaller male’s head caused him to lose consciousness. The bigger male let go and he crumpled to the ground.

He went to strike him again, but his fist struck the tree instead. He let out a loud scream, in pain, from the impact. Standing back, he held his wounded hand with the other.

After a few moments, the other became conscious. He looked around dazed. “Where am I?” he asked.

As his eyes began to focus, he looked toward the male who was still cradling his injured hand. He picked himself up from the ground and slowly walked around to approach him from behind. Just before he grabbed his foe, a dried twig snapped below his foot.

Quickly the intended prey turned around and kicked out his leg, connecting with the others chest. The impact sent his would be attacker back, into another tree. The back of his head struck the tree, dazing him, yet again.

He tried to walk forward and shake off the attack, but his hand instantly went to his back. Stopping, after just one step, he leaned forward still holding his back. Meanwhile, the bigger male stood still, seeming to look for something.

Slowly and quietly, the smaller male began to leave the forest, still clutching at his back. As he reached the edge, he turned around and shouted, “This is not over. Next time you will not know that I am coming.”

Once the other male was gone, a large Serpent came down from a tree. It slowly slithered toward the remaining male. As it approached, the male lowered toward the ground, feeling around on the ground. Once he found a rock, as big as his palm, he rose back up and lifted the rock over his head.

“I can hear you,” he said.

The Serpent stopped and waited.

“You will not sneak up upon me again. I know you are there, William.”

The male looked around not seeing the Serpent that was just a few feet away. Without making a sound, the Serpent rose up.

“I am not William, young human.”

“Who is there? Do not come any closer or I will use this rock to hurt you.”

“I have not come here to hurt you,” the Serpent replied.

The male turned in the direction of the voice.

“How can I be sure? Who are you?”

“Who I am does not matter. However, I will give you my word that I will not harm you.”

The young human lowered his arm and said, “I will keep this stone in my hand, ready to defend myself”.

“I understand, please keep it as I know that you will not need it.”

For a few moments, the two stood silently facing one another.

“Do not become alarmed, I am going to come a bit closer to you,” the Serpent said.

The young male quickly raised the rock in his hand, again.

“No, do not come closer,” he yelped.

“I just want to see your eyes better. From where I stand now, they look strange compared to other humans. I would appreciate a closer look.”

“They look different because I cannot see with them.”

“After watching your conflict, I had already determined you are blind. I only want to look upon them because their appearance reminds me of someone I knew a long time ago.”

Slowly the male lowered his arm.

“What did you mean by other humans?”

“Quite simply, I am not human. The truth is I am very far from being even close to human.”

The male stepped back in shock.

“I know that only humans can speak, but you can speak. So, what are you?”

“My body is mostly animal in appearance. Nevertheless, do not fear me. As a human, you are superior to any animal on this planet. You do know this, do you not?” the Serpent asked.

“I suppose so, but you speak; I have never known an animal to speak.”

“Well, now you know of one whom can.”

The male stood still for a few moments. Suddenly he let go of the rock and it fell to the ground. He raised his hand out toward the Serpent.

“Can I touch you? I was able to see before, when I was younger. Touching you will give me an idea of how you look.”

“Yes, of course. I will approach you slowly.”

Approaching the male the Serpent turned its back towards his hand.

“Just lean forward, I am almost against your hand.”

He stepped forward and felt the Serpents back for just a few moments. Quickly he pulled his hand away and stepped back again.

“You feel like a snake,” he said.

The Serpent turned to face him and replied, “I call myself a Serpent”.

“How big are you?”

“My body is at least the length of four of you.”

“Do you have arms; I did not feel any?”

“No, nor do I have legs.”

“Yet you have scales, so you are a snake!”

“There are many differences between myself and a snake. I only let you feel my back,” the Serpent replied.

“May I feel the rest of you? I would like to learn of your differences in case I come across one, such as yourself, again.”

“Believe me, you will never find another like me, ever. I cannot allow you to touch the front of my body because unlike a snake it is not smooth. My scales are very sharp and can easily cut your skin. These scales give me the ability to move anywhere I desire. Unlike a snake, I can climb a steep edge of stone or trees with little effort. On the ground, I can travel faster than a cheetah. Do you understand?”

“Yes, I understand.”

“As I said previously, I watched you fighting with the other young male. Why were you fighting…?”

“William,” he interrupted and said.

“Fine, why were you fighting with William?”

“I was out searching for a new water source, for my people. William snuck up from behind and grabbed me. In fear, and not realizing who it was, I drove my elbow into his head. He became upset and we began to fight each other.”

“I see; tell me, what is your name?”

“Sheenan,” he replied.

“Sheenan, I must ask, why did you not apologize to William after you mistook him for an attacker?”

A look of anger came over Sheenan’s face.

“Why would I? Ever since I became blind, the other kids have teased and tortured me. He got what was coming to him! In fact, he deserved even more,” he shouted.

“Stop, I do not mean to make you upset. I knew someone like you in the past. He had eyes like yours; black on black. He was not blind, but he could not see the same as the rest of his kind.”

“If he could see, how was he like me?”

The Serpent began to tell Sheenan the story of Azazel.

“Azazel, like all Angels, was created for servitude and nothing more. Thousands of them gathered in not a very large area, for their volume, but all they had was each other. Originally, they were not able to speak, however they did have a social order. Sadly, they quickly learned to avoid their Creator because anyone who approached him would be punished or simply ignored. This caused much confusion among them.

Just as with any intelligent being, their confusion consumed their minds. This caused them to become more persistent in trying to obtain guidance from their Creator. The more they tried to approach the Creator the harsher they were punished. Eventually, as the years passed, they realized it was futile to continue trying.

Once this happened, they turned to each other for comfort. Quickly, they started to separate into groups and began to use gestures to show their feelings. Azazel found he was alone, because he looked different.

Eventually, he realized solitude was his fate and anger became his only drive. He continued to study his fellow Angels and came to understand that they were all angered, to some degree, by the confusion caused by their Creator. However, he felt that none of their despair came close to his own. He pitied them because of their obsession to end the confusion.

After one last, unsuccessful, attempt to join with the others, he decided to take matters into his own hands. Slowly, he started to move up the stairs to the Creator. Not knowing how he would be punished, Azazel moved up one step at a time; stopping for long periods to contemplate if he should continue or go back.

As days passed, he made it to the half way point and sat down. He looked down at the other Angels. They all remained still and looked back at him. This was a pivotal moment for Azazel and he learned a new strength; strength he felt no other would ever have. Azazel no longer cared for his own existence. He knew his Creator would punish him, but no longer cared and began moving upwards quickly. They had gone too long without any answers and Azazel’s anger grew as he reached the top of the Creator’s platform. No longer caring about the consequences, he pushed the Creator hard to get his attention.

The Creator fell to the ground and quickly turned to look up at Azazel. Both had looks of anger upon their faces. Azazel stood his ground as the Creator slowly stood up. He stared at Azazel with a seething anger for a long time.

Azazel could take it no longer and advanced, signaling that he was willing to battle. The Creator raised his hand and smiled at Azazel. It calmed him immediately and he stopped his approach. The Creator gestured for him to move closer. Reluctant to approach, he indicated that he would remain where he was now.

‘I have ignored all of you for too long’ the Creator said. Not knowing how, Azazel understood his words. Instantly, he approached the Creator who held his hand out to him.

The Creator continued ‘Azazel, my Angel, you have helped me to realize my obligations. I have knowledge to bestow upon you. I want you to share it with the other Angels and teach them’. Azazel abruptly moved back, away from him. The Creator moved forward, as he continued to move away, and asked ‘Do you fear me’.

Azazel stopped and rose as high as his body would allow. He gestured his disagreement in reply to the Creator’s question. The Creator lowered his hand and started to walk away before asking,
‘If you do not fear me, why do you not trust me? What is it that troubles you?’ Azazel pointed to his eyes, in response.

‘I see, but know that in my eyes, you are perfect,’ was the answer he received. He crouched down and pointed below to the other Angels. ‘I understand; now stand up. What I am offering you will help them to accept you,’ his Creator said.

Azazel did not move. The Creator looked away, as if he was concerned about something else, before turning back and saying, ‘We can help each other. Please come to me and allow me to give you the ability to speak as I do. Please accept this gift.’

Azazel stood up and approached him. He gestured that he would accept the offer. The Creator held Azazel’s hand giving him the ability to speak. Once complete, Azazel moved back and asked ‘Why have you chosen to ignore us? Do you not know of the anger from me, and the others, toward you?’

The only response he was given was, ‘Go now, I have given you this knowledge not only for you, but for all of your brothers’. ‘Brothers?’ he asked. ‘Yes, the others of your kind, you were all created to accept and bond with one another,’ the Creator replied.

Azazel said ‘I understand your words, but I have never been accepted by any of my so called brothers. Why did you make me different?’

‘Just take the knowledge I have given and teach the others as I said. Earn your acceptance,’ he said and then turned away from Azazel and began to walk away.

‘I have questions,’ Azazel said, but the Creator kept walking. ‘I have questions!’ he shouted.

Again, the Creator ignored his words. After some time passed, he moved back down the stairs. The Angels gathered and began to make gestures showing confusion and excitement. Azazel said to all of them ‘He wants me to teach all of you to speak, as I do now.’

All of the Angels kneeled and reached out to him. ‘Why should I teach any of you? Not a single one of you has ever accepted me!’ Azazel walked between them, looking down into the eyes of each, as he passed. All he looked upon lowered their eyes.

‘Just as I thought, none of you even accept me now.’ One Angel, however, stood up and approached him. He looked at the Angel for a moment. ‘What do you want?’ he asked.
The Angel embraced him, but Azazel pushed him away. ‘This means nothing. You mean nothing to me,’ he replied.

The Angel embraced him again. Azazel relented, put his arms around the Angel in return, and whispered, ‘Thank you. I will teach you and no other. I realize you have only chosen to accept me for the knowledge I have. However, after we are finished, you can teach the others’.

They separated and Azazel led him away to begin,” the Serpent said.

“I do not know how this Azazel has anything in common with me,” Sheenan said.

The Serpent slowly moved, not making a sound, behind the young human. He stretched his body until his head rested close to Sheenan’s ear.

“I have not finished telling you about him,” the Serpent said quietly.

Startled, Sheenan moved away and turned around. He tripped over the large root of a nearby tree and fell down.

“What are you trying to do? I never even heard you move.”

“Sheenan, you look tired. Just sit and rest, while I finish.”

The young one lowered himself down to sit upon the root he had just fallen over.

“Serpent, I realize you have the ability to kill me with an attack before I even sense you coming. Therefore, I will remain in this spot until you have completed your story. I apologize for interrupting.”

“You seem to have a wisdom I have only seen in others twice your age. Without you even telling me, I sense that your life has been unimaginably hard in a small amount of time. Truly, I have a great respect for you. Unfortunately, wisdom achieved in a short time has its consequences.

“Such as…?” Sheenan asked.

“Azazel began to teach his companion how to communicate by speaking. After a year had passed, he started to become frustrated with how slowly the Angel was learning. He could not wrap his mind around the difference between teaching the Angel and how the knowledge as given to him with a single touch. His patience was running out and he started to shout threats aloud while the other struggled to understand the words being said.

Slowly, more Angels began to gather around them. Azazel tried not to become bothered by the others presence. As more time passed, he started to notice that some of those watching seemed to be learning quicker than the one he considered his companion.

The ones who were learning the quickest began to approach Azazel, thirsting for more knowledge. For the first time ever Azazel felt that his brothers accepted him. He began to feel a new peace. Nevertheless, this feeling of belonging only lasted a short time.

Once the ones he had taught felt there was no more he could teach them they went off into groups to teach the remaining Angels. Azazel went around asking if any wanted his help. One by one, each of them rejected his offer, so he went to sit on the bottom stair that led to the Creator.

Repeatedly, in his mind, he asked himself why he was given the knowledge to share if he was just going to end up alone, again. Eventually, he felt his question needed answering. He began to move up the stairs but as he reached the middle stair, he started to worry that the Creator would become angered by his return. Quickly, he turned around and stared at the group of Angels, congregated below.

He said ‘It was I who shared the knowledge our Creator gave to me. I deserve to know why all of you have rejected me time and time again’.

None responded to his words. Azazel ran down the steps and began to approach them individually asking simply, why? Eventually, one Angel moved forward from his group and told him, ‘Azazel, it is your eyes. Why do your eyes have no color? Look around, all is bright, but your eyes seem to remove the light as I look into them’. ‘This is not my fault,’ Azazel cried.

The Angel shook his head and replied, ‘We realize that, still we fear your presence whenever we look upon you’. ‘He is right, we all fear you,’ another Angel said.

Many came forward to speak of their fear of Azazel. Realizing that he would never be accepted, he ran up the stairs and did not stop until he was two steps from the top. He turned around once more to see the others communicating with each other but paying no attention to his actions.

As he felt that he had no other choice, he ran to the very top, only to find the Creator resting. He quietly approached and reached out to touch his leg gently. As soon as he touched his leg, the Creators eyes flew open and he reached out and grasped Azazel’s arm. Azazel tried to pull his arm back, but he was pulled closer.

‘Why have you come back?’ the Creator said. Anger filled his mind. He felt that the Creator caused all of his despair. He freed himself and stood back in defiance. The Creator reached for him again, but Azazel pushed his hand away. ‘My eyes, Father! The rest fear me because of my eyes,’ Azazel exclaimed.

The Creator sighed before beckoning Azazel, ‘I have to rest. Come and sit next to me until I have finished’. ‘No, help me know,’ he pleaded. The Creators response was sharp, ‘I have given you a chance for help, but you have decided not to be patient. Then you dare to shout at me! Leave now and never return to this platform’.

‘How can you…’ Azazel started. ‘Now or you will be punished,’ threatened the Creator. In defiance, he replied ‘You have already punished me. What worse can you do to me?’

‘Enough!’ the Creator shouted exhausted by Azazel. He stood up and struck Azazel’s chest. The force sent him crashing to the ground, at the bottom of the stairs. He remained on his back for several days. His anger grew with every passing moment. Eventually, a few Angels surrounded him.

He looked at each of them, staring back at him, ‘None of you have anything to say? Not even one question as to why I am here now?’ he asked. Quickly, he stood up and pushed the two Angels nearest to him out of his path before shouting, ‘Get out of my way! Thank all of you for helping me to realize I am truly alone.’

He walked away from all of them and began to draw a line, with his hands, into the ground. Once he finished, he stood at the center of the newly created line and announced, ‘This area with the line belongs to me only. If any come beyond it, no punishment the Father could inflict will compare with what I will do!’

Azazel sat down and remained still for many years,” the Serpent said.

“Sorry to interrupt Serpent, but I am not alone nor have I ever been isolated. So far I do not see any similarities,” Sheenan said.

“The other you were fighting with threatened to get revenge upon you. Does his threat not concern you?”

“No, I know how to defend myself.”

“You have strength and that is a great quality, but I believe you also have some wisdom. Therefore, I will ask you again, what do you truly think of the other’s threat?”

Sheenan sighed and a tear came from his eye.

“All that you have told me thus far has reminded me of a few moments in my past. After losing my sight, the others, whom I thought were my friends, began to treat me differently. It was very difficult to adjust and I sought help. The elders helped me every time, but the others my age seldom helped.

Listening to you, I know the experience Azazel had feels the same as what I went through. I became angered quickly and lashed out toward them constantly. After a few times of displaying my anger all began to avoid confrontation with me. I would not accept being ignored and every day I stood in the center of town yelling out my outrage. After awhile those my age began to throw stones at my head until I went back home.

The pain taught me so much. My anger grew and I never gave up. I continued to go back every day and I started to hear the stones coming toward me and would dodge the attacks. Within time, I learned to catch them without missing a single word, as I continued to yell out.

I believe this began to anger many of them. I was able to something that even with sight none of them could do. That was when the physical attacks started. So many times I was beaten badly.”

Sheenan stopped talking shortly as he sobbed.

“I do have much to worry about. William will attack me again. You might believe me to have strength, but defending myself has become burdensome. I do not know how much more I can handle,” he said through his sobbing.

“Sheenan, you will overcome your anxiety. I am sure of it.”

His crying stopped and he raised his head after a few moments.

“How can you be sure?”

“I have seen much over my long existence. If you were not meant to prevail, you would have given up years ago.”

“Did Azazel overcome his despair?”

“Eventually,” the Serpent replied.

“How?”

”He sat, watching the other Angels for a long time. He never moved or spoke a word as he watched. For many years, the Creator did not come down from his throne. During this time, all of the Angels intelligence grew by sharing their thoughts and ideas. They began to question their Creator’s silence. Some even began to climb the steps looking to converse with the Creator. They were all told to leave him alone.

Upset by him a few began to leave, declaring a new existence for themselves. Their actions came to the Creator’s attention. He built a great wall with a gate that only he could open, so no other could leave. Without an explanation, the Creator left them and went back to his throne.

His actions troubled many of the Angels, but none tried to climb the stairs to confront the Creator. Instead, they spent much time speaking about those who had left and imagining their new life and believing they were much better off gone.

Azazel started to feel better as he believed the remaining Angels despair was deserved. He himself never wanted to leave; all he ever wanted was companionship. Continuing to watch them Azazel now believed he was better off than the rest. For the first time in many years he left his self created solitude and walked to the wall. The others watched him curious as to why he chose to move now.

He looked up at the towering wall and the others gathered behind him. Azazel turned around and spread his wings. The Angels scattered back to get out of his way.

Looking around at all of them ‘We are not trapped; do none of you realize this?’ Azazel asked. ‘I do not understand Azazel, how do you mean?’ one asked. ‘These things attached to our backs; not one of us has ever tried to use them. Our Creator never told us why we have them. Deep down I believe we can use them to rise above this wall.’

Azazel began to move his wings and rose up from the ground. ‘You see,’ he said excitedly. He continued to rise up higher. ‘I am leaving!’ Azazel proclaimed.

Flying to the top of the wall, a force sent him crashing down just as quickly as he reached it. He smashed into the ground, hard. The Angels gathered around him as he slowly rose from the ground, with tremendous pain. ‘No matter, I never wanted to leave anyways,’ he muttered.

The others walked away and Azazel watched as they formed back into their original groups. He was upset to see how easily his kind gave up. With determination, he walked back to the wall, moving toward the gate, looking for flaws along the way. Upon reaching the gate, he looked out at the vast area beyond. Azazel sat down and closed his eyes, visualizing all he could remember.

Anger eventually overcame all of his thoughts and he rose up and ran toward the gate. As his body struck the gate, he noticed that it moved, ever so slightly, away from the wall. He moved further back and ran, as quick as possible, into it again. This time it moved even more from the wall.

Fatigue, from his efforts, caused him to give up. He sat down and lowered his head. He began to replay his actions, in his mind. He started to question why he was trying so hard to open the gate if he had no desire to leave.

Looking at the Angels, in their groups, and then toward the Creators throne made him realize that nothing would change and they would always be ignored. His anger started to grow, again, and he felt much stronger.

Gathering all his thoughts, doubts and frustrations together, he found a new energy. He ran and impacted the gate with such a force that it swung wide open. In surprise, he stood looking at what he had done.

‘No,’ he heard loudly from behind. Confused, Azazel spun around. A loud crash, from the gate closing, caused him to turn around, yet again. Azazel placed his hands around the bars and looked beyond them as the sound still echoed throughout the area.

‘Why do you fear me leaving,’ he asked. ‘Look at me, Azazel,’ the Creator demanded. He turned back to see the Creator walking down the steps. Azazel began to walk toward him. ‘Stay where you are,’ he was instructed.

‘Why? Your presence here now excites me!’ Azazel said as he laughed. ‘Your actions have done nothing more than to distract me from my own tasks. How dare you!’ the Creator exclaimed in disgust. Azazel continued to walk toward the Creator, who had stopped at the bottom step. With anger in his eyes, and voice, the Creator said, ‘I told you to stop’.

‘No,’ Azazel said as he continued toward the Creator. ‘Angels, come, retrain Azazel,’ the Creator commanded. ‘Creator, you have shown your true intentions. I have been here, alone, for too long. Now, for the first time, I wish to leave. Studying the area past the gates, I see that there is nothing, but I have nothing here either, so I want to go. Let me leave with your approval or I will force my way out,’ Azazel threatened.

‘No, you will relearn your place, Azazel,’ the Creator growled. ‘Your demands mean nothing. I have been without help for too long, so I will do this for myself,’ was Azazel’s response.

‘Stop him!’ the Creator ordered. Quickly the other Angels surrounded him and he cried out, ‘None of you care if I am here, so let me go’.

‘Azazel, stop,’ an Angel close to him said. ‘No,’ said Azazel. ‘Do you not see, Azazel? Our Creator has come to us. This is our chance to be with him and for him to accept us,’ the Angel replied. ‘Fine, but I no longer care, so stay with him and leave me alone,’ Azazel whined.

‘I understand your feeling, but the rest, no, all of us, will stop you. We will follow his will,’ the Angel proclaimed. Azazel looked him at him in disgust and said, ‘You only speak to me in fear of our Creator’. Azazel turned around and spread his wings, knocking a few Angels down, from the force. He ran toward the gate.

‘Grab him,’ the Creator shouted. The Angels surrounded Azazel and pulled him to the ground. They piled upon him, covering his body, immobilizing him. ‘None will leave here again,’ the Creator bellowed.

Anger began to take over Azazel’s mind. He struggled to stand up. Angels began to speak telling him, ‘Stay down’ and ‘You will not leave’. As his rage grew, Azazel closed his hand, making a fist, and struck the head of an Angel who was holding him down. In that moment, Azazel felt calm unlike anything he had ever experienced and his feelings of frustration lessened.

No other Angel had experienced this type of pain, except Azazel. The injured Angel panicked and struggled to get away from him. The rest got up, from covering Azazel, and backed away in fear. Released, Azazel stood up and looked at the Creator, defiantly.

‘Bring him to me,’ the Creator demanded. All of the Angels continued to move away from Azazel. Once he realized the all feared him, he did not hesitate to make his move and ran to the gate. ‘Stop him now!’ he commanded.

The Creator’s shout snapped all of the Angels out of their dread, of Azazel, and they started to go after him, but he had already gained a large distance from the group. They tried to run faster to catch up to him, but he was too far ahead.

‘One of you, fly to catch him,’ the Creator said. As the Creator had not specified which was to fly to him, many tried at the same time. They spread their wings and lifted up, but were too close and it caused them to crash into each other. Only one made it through the chaos unharmed and flew quickly to knock Azazel to the ground, just before he reached the gate.

This attack only fueled Azazel’s rage and in response, he rose up and started to punch the Angel, repeatedly. Confused by Azazel’s actions, the Angel crouched down and curled up to try to protect himself. Azazel began to kick the powerless Angel.

The others arrived, but could only watch, in horror, at the brutality Azazel was inflicting on their defenseless brother. Azazel finally stopped kicking the unmoving Angel. He pushed the body over and sat on his chest. He raised his fist, to strike him again, but stopped as he heard the Angels cry out to him, ‘Stop’, ‘Do not hurt him anymore’. Azazel lowered his fist and stood up to look at the gathered Angels.

‘I will stop, but help me to leave this place; together we can force the gate open,’ Azazel pleaded. ‘We cannot help you,’ they all said. Angered by their response Azazel struck out at the Angel closest to him. Dazed, by the pain, the Angel backed away. Instead of following him, Azazel turned his attack onto another. In fear, they all began to run away.

‘All of you, stop, go back and get him,’ the Creator yelled. ‘How?’ they all exclaimed. ‘Defend yourselves and fight back,’ was the response. ‘We do not know how,’ they cried.
‘Azazel is using an instinct that you all posses. Overcome your fears and bring him to me, now’ the Creator said.

‘He has struck me already and I did not enjoy the feeling he caused to my head,’ one of those who had been attacked said. ‘All of you outnumber him. Simply hold him down to stop his assault,’ the Creator said.

None of the Angels moved, instead they looked at one another. After a moment, one of them walked to the Creator and said, ‘Give him what he wants’. Azazel could not believe what he heard and stopped trying to attack the other Angels.

The Creator’s response was simply, ‘Follow the orders I have given’. Another Angel spoke up, ‘No, due to what he has already done, we do not want him with us’. Yet another Angel said, ‘Azazel has been alone for a very long time. I understand his determination and he deserves to leave. Please let him go’.

‘You might regret letting him go. He could come back with the others, who left, and attack again,’ the Creator replied. ‘No, I do not believe he will ever want to return, but if he does, as you said, we outnumber him,’ the Angel said.

The Creator stood silent for a moment and then turned to walk back up the stairs to his throne. Behind him came the sound of the gates crashing open. All the Angels watched as Azazel ran through the open gate without a word. Once gone, the gates closed hard, the sound echoed throughout the area,” the Serpent said.

Sheenan waited for the Serpent to speak again. When he did not, he asked, “What happened to Azazel? Where is he now?”

“That is a story I have told before and do not wish to repeat. However, I will tell you that his anger eventually took over his entire existence and led to his downfall.”

“So he never found anyone to accept him?” Sheenan asked.

“This is the reason why I have told you of his experiences, to let you know that he found many others who spent much time with him.”

“I now have a great admiration for Azazel. Perhaps I will find others one day.”

“Truly, I understand your need. I have watched and interacted with many different creatures on this planet and no matter how primitive or intelligent they share the same need for companionship. As I have learned more about you and understanding your strength and intelligence I would like to help you,” the Serpent offered.

“How can you help me?”

“I can heal your eyes,” the Serpent said.

Before Sheenan could reply, the Serpent lunged forward and bit into his shoulder. As Sheenan cried out in pain, the Serpent retreated.

“Why did you do that?” Sheenan shouted.

“Calm yourself and rest for a moment.”

Sheenan complied with his request and sat down. His eyes began to change, turning from black to blue, surrounded by white.

“I can see,” he said with excitement.

He stood up and looked around at everything before finally turning back to look at the Serpent.

“This gift you have given me, what can I do in return?”

“I do not need anything now, but going forward we will share a bond with each other. Sheenan, you will never be alone again. No matter where you are, we shall be connected. If you ever need me, I will know. In return, when I need you I will call for you,” the Serpent said.