I really hate what He’s done with his offices. They used to be in the form of a garden and then at least the surroundings were relaxing even if nothing else was. Now He’s got this whole Greek temple thing happening and it’s all just so cold. I knew when that fucking Broadway set designer died and He brought him in as an intern that something like this was gonna happen. I mean He’s freakin dramatic enough all by Himself without people encouraging it.
And what’s with this whole, “You gotta leave your wings unfurled when you’re in His presence!” I mean, puhleaze! How am I supposed to relax like that? You can’t lean against anything! And basically in a Greek temple it’s pretty much all about leaning. Although…I really do look stunning with my wings out. They’re so fluffy and white and when I curl one around by my face I can even do, “Peek-a-boo!” Okay, maybe that’s not the most important thing but it’s fun and if you do it to a human you can scare the crap outta them.
Just then the heavy old bronze door creaked open a little and an old, really old, female angel slipped through and walked over to me. It was Celeste. Not exactly my favorite and she kinda hated me too.
“You can’t go in like that!” Well good morning to you too. “Straighten out those feathers! This all reflects on me, you know. There’s no reason for slovenly angels! It’s not like you have to actually work to look good. Fluff up!” I rolled my eyes and then, because she wouldn’t quit until I did, I stretched out my wings and fluttered them violently.
Celeste’s eyes grew wide and then she frowned. She shook her head. “You’ve always been better looking than an angel should be. But don’t think for a moment that it cuts any ice with Him!” I smiled because what she said is true and also because it irritates her.
Then suddenly the room became incandescent and my mind turned blank.
When the tip of his finger touched my face my body was suffused with a celestial warmth and the tips of my wings began to vibrate violently.
His voice rolled like the sound of summer thunder. He said softly, “I do believe that I outdid myself with the color of your eyes. You know, I don’t believe that in all of creation there’s a better blue.”
I was struggling to control the sound of my voice and I’m certain it came out all high and crazy sounding. “Eh..eh..everyone says they’re my best feature.” I don’t get why I’m always so nervous around Him. I mean what can he do? He can’t kill me! Even God can’t kill an angel.
“And how old are you now, Michael 1394?”
I gulped and then squeaked out, “Thirteen thousand, four hundred and fifty-six years…Sir.” I mean, c’mon, I know he knows that.
He smiled and the sky glowed with a lemon yellow light. “Just a boy really.” He rubbed His chin. “That mitigates things.”
Okay, this could be bad. I stammered out, “M..m..mitigates?”
His eyes grew dark and lightning flashed deep within them. His voice had a deep menacing rumble. “I was planning to hurl you into the black hole at the center of the universe! But you’re very young.” The marble columns holding up the roof began to vibrate ominously.
I squeaked out, “Not the little one at the center of this galaxy? It’s a lot closer!”
He shook his head slowly and tornadoes spun out into the sky. He frowned. “Well, we tried that, didn’t we? My understanding is that you found it to be great fun.” It is pretty cool….well once you got used to the sensation of being squeezed.
“Who told you that? It was horrible! The worst punishment ever!”
He glared at me and then lifted an eyebrow. “Do you really think that I need people to tell me things?”
“Okay…no…I guess not. I dunno what I was thinking.” The black hole at the center of the universe is like a trillion times worse than the one at the center of the galaxy. And while it’s true that even God can’t kill an angel, he can sure make their life…well, hell. “But I can’t imagine that I did anything that’d warrant…you know…what you said.”
He glared at me again and gee I wish he wouldn’t do that. Without warning He slammed his hand down onto a nearby marble pedestal and the sound was like a thousand atomic bombs going off. Without even thinking I shot up in like a zillionth of a second to the top of the building and clung trembling to the Corinthian capital at the very top of an enormous column and my very first thought was, “Corinthian? It’s too much!”
He thundered up at me, “A CRUISE SHIP, MICHAEL, A CRUISE SHIP!”
I was beginning to lose my grip. Cruise ship? I couldn’t believe the he even noticed that cruise ship.
He glared up at me. “Get down here, Michael!”
I yelled down, “You’re not gonna hurt me are ya?”
He said menacingly, “Michael!”
I slowly descended until I was on celestial terra firma. “Yes, Sir.”
Suddenly His voice was calm. “Michael, who have I consistently said are my chosen people?”
“No, I mean lately.”
I’m sure this was in one of the endless number of bulletins He sends out. Then I remembered. “Ahhh…faggots?” And why does an entity that can direct your thoughts really need all that copy paper?
His eyes grew huge. “WE DO NOT CALL THEM FAGGOTS!” The shock wave almost knocked me over and all over the world flocks of birds took flight.
“Okay, okay, don’t hurt me, I’m really really sorry!! Ah ah ah…we call em ah “homosexual gentlemen who have just left the room?” He just glared at me. “Don’t get mad! That’s what Tennessee Williams called em and he oughta know! C’mon, gimme a break here! Why does it matter?”
He ignored my question. “And who, Michael, are closer to angels than any other humans?” Why does he keep asking these questions and why can’t they be multiple choice?
He smiled at me and then just to be a smart ass and prove that he can read minds said,
“a. Republicans b. Orthodontists c. Gay people.”
I honestly couldn’t help it, I rolled my eyes. “Okay, I’ll pick C. Gay people.” Because, c’mon, Republicans? Okay it coulda been Orthodontists but then I figured, why bother.
“And, Michael, of the one thousand, five hundred and three people that died when you sank that cruise ship, just how many do you suppose were gay?”
Oh…I guess there is that. “Ahhh I dunno, lots I guess, huh?”
“ALL OF THEM, MICHAEL!!!”
My voice was quavering. “I didn’t know it was such a big deal! Honest! I mean we do it all the time! The Captain of that boat mocked me!! Mocked!! And you wouldn’t believe what he said about you! I mean I would never have done it if it was just about me because, well, who am I but honestly when he started talking about you I just knew what had to be done! Please don’t hurt me!”
Suddenly despite Him telling me to shut up I was talking so fast that I could barely understand myself. “Okay…I’m really really sorry. Maybe if the angel handbook was rewritten so that some of these things were clearer cause there’s like a million things to remember and every thing is sooo ambiguous! I’d be happy to volunteer for the job of doing that and you wouldn’t even have to pay me or anything.”
He placed his hand on my shoulder and it felt like the weight of the Atlas Mountains. “No, Michael. But since you’ve shown such a lack of understanding of gay people I think that it’s time that you spent some time among them. I’m thinking a millennium.”
“A thousand years? You gotta be kidding!” I probably shouldn’t have said that.
“No, Michael, you shouldn’t have said that! Wanna shoot for two thousand?” He drew Himself up and then seemed to relax. “Besides, Michael, they need your help. It hasn’t been an easy time for them.”
“But, God, I’ve only got white! White!!”
For the first time he smiled. “I think that you’ll be able to get some help with that…where you’re going.”
“But God, I can’t go into the gay community, I don’t have genitals! I’d stand out like a sore thumb!”
He smiled and shook his head. “See Keith in Equipment. He’ll fix you up. Besides, you’re gonna need more than just genitals.”
That size queen? “Oh…okay.” More than genitals?
“Dude, ya need a butt hole! That’s every bit as important as a dick! Especially where you’re goin.” Keith is the only angel I ever saw who dressed in Levi’s and a flannel shirt. And I never could figure out how he got away with it.
“Keith, I don’t need a butt hole. That’s disgusting! Angels don’t take…dumps! Yuck!”
Keith grabbed a piece of paper off of his desk. “Dude, I got it in black and white. “All functioning human parts. That sooo includes a butt hole!”
I looked up towards the ceiling. “Is He kidding? I wouldn’t even know how to take a dump. Although I’ve seen enough humans do it. Doesn’t look like that big of a deal although it is disgusting.”
Keith leaned against his desk and grinned. “The first time’ll totally freak ya out. Angels don’t really have anything even remotely like it. Just stay calm when it happens and don’t forget to breathe. You’ll get used to it.” Breathe? Breathing for angels is optional, well, normally.
He opened a drawer and signaled me to take a look. “These are just models of genitals. The real thing’ll be the real thing. See anything you like?” They all did seem curiously appealing.
I picked up a big floppy penis. “This one looks good. Sure is big!”
Keith made a face and shook his head. “The Donovan, big, but ya gotta have one that works good too, Bro.”
He picked one up. “This is the Stryker. A good reliable model.”
“Wow! Nice shape and huge.”
He grinned. “Man you’re goin where big is best. I really envy you.” He shook his head slowly. “I went into the gay community once. You’re in for a gooood time. Specially with this equipment.”
“Look at the work order again, Keith. Is he letting me keep my powers?”
Keith studied the paper. “Wings become “Condition Specific” and restraint is urged with everything else.”
“What does that actually mean?”
He grinned. “Means you better have a good reason for everything you do. Typical bureaucratic bullshit. Means they’re gonna nail your ass if you piss em off.”
I sighed heavily. “Everything I do pisses Him off.”
Keith said, “Hey, you always were a favorite of His but He’s not the only one you gotta worry about. You got department heads up the yingyang that’d give anything to nail an angel. If you need help lemme know. I got a lotta friends around here.” He shook his head. “I’ve seen some crap…I couldn’t tell ya.”
“Well I dunno who I’m even supposed to be yet! They haven’t told me jack!”
Keith looked at the work order. “Michael Connelly, says so right here.” But Keith was shaking his head like there was a problem.
I said, “What is it?”
“Man, they’re sending you to fucking Milwaukee!”
“Milwaukee? Where is it?”
Keith laughed. “The middle of fuckin nowhere…Wisfuckinconsin. Man somebody hates you!”
“Wisconsin…that’s in the United States, right?”
Keith laughed. “Not everybody’d agree but yeah, it is.”
“Well what’s so terrible about that?”
“How many gay guys can there be in Milwaukee? It’s gotta be all bricklayers and shit. Man, I went to San Francisco. That was fuckin awesome!”
“Yeah but Keith I’m not necessarily looking for sex stuff. I mean what do I know about sex? I think I’d probably just ignore that part of it. I’d probably concentrate on the interior decorating, teaching, maybe even be a dentist, stuff like that.”
Keith laughed evilly. “For a thousand years? Mikey you get them Stryker’s genitals installed and you’re gonna be howling at the moon.” I thought he was crazy. I mean who’d wanna do that shit with all those disgusting fluids? Yuck!
Keith put his feet up on his desk and lit a cigarette. “So when’s the Transformation?”
I shivered. “Tonight, nine o’clock. I gotta tell ya, I’m nervous. I never did anything like this before. It’s always been messenger work and even once in awhile, Avenging, but never this. It’s a little scary.”
“Be cool Mikey. Remember you still got most of your powers. Nobody down there can touch ya. But Mikey…don’t fall in love…..believe me….it sucks.”
I will never get used to these genitals! How do humans stand these things? And it’d be way bad enough if they were just hanging there but this damn penis thing keeps getting hard and then it doubles in size! It’s fucking huge! This insane underwear keeps pushing it against my left leg and every time I move they rub together and it takes like almost no stimulation for it to get hard again. It’s a good thing I had that indoctrination or I would just taken this thing out like a dozen times and slapped it against a wall. But there is this strangely comforting feeling that I get when it does start to get hard. Really like nothing I’ve ever felt before and I can see how a person might enjoy it.
And Holy Shit! Peeing! When I first materialized in the Airport Terminal I had this odd sensation in my lower abdomen…again, thanks only to training, I recognized it for what it was but it took fucking forever to find a men’s room and I had to run through the terminal with my fist clamped around the end of my dick. I ran up to the urinal, ripped my dick outta my pants and then pounded on the wall with my fist yelling, “FUCK! FUCK! FUCK!” until the urine finally began to stream into that porcelain thingy. I yelled, “How do they stand it?!!!” It wasn’t till I was almost done that I really noticed the guy at the next urinal staring at me and shaking his head like he thought I had done something terribly wrong.
When the guy finally pushed his dick into his pants and started to walk away he said, “Dude, better watch where you’re stickin that thing.” What the hell was that about?
The other thing that I wonder about is why they really insisted that I arrive in Milwaukee at the airport. It’s not like I flew in, at least not on a plane.
There was a cab driver standing in front of me with the door to his cab open. “Cab, Sir?”
“Ahh, sure.” I slid into the back of the cab.
“Nope, it’s already at the apartment.”
“Apartment?” I shouldn’t have said that. I gotta learn.
I laughed to cover my screw up and then stammered, “Been a long trip. It’ll be good to get back to my apartment.” I wonder what my apartment is like. Celeste rented it for me by phone. She said it was perfect. It’s gonna seem odd actually living somewhere. I mean strictly speaking, angels just kinda hang out, although I used to love taking naps on the top of the Chrsyler building. You can get a hell of a tan there. Well, you know, if you were actually able to tan. I can’t really tan but then I’ve pretty much got this Italian look happening. Although I guess the truth of the matter is that it’d have to be a pre-Italian look in as much as the country of Italy didn’t exist at the time of my creation.
My creation, gee time flies. It seems like only yesterday that I was created. It all came about because the original Michael and his pal Loki had a bet going about who was the fastest angel. So, finally, to settle it they decided to race and they were shooting around the world in opposite directions at the equator and each time they passed each other they’d yell insults. Then one time they were so busy concentrating on yelling trash that they weren’t looking where they were going and they crashed into each other. God made me from the energy given off by the crash. I kinda think of those guys as my uncles or some shit.
We got on a freeway and pretty soon we driving over a really high bridge next to the lake and there seemed to be ships docked right next to bridge and a little bit under it. Then as we left the bridge there was this weird building that almost looked like a space ship or something with huge spread wings, maybe like an angel building. It was really pretty. Then off to our right was the lake and lots of beaches with people walking and laughing and talking even though it was late at night. I wanted to ask the cab driver if it was always like this but I knew that he’d figured that I should already know the answer to that question so I just kept my mouth shut.
Finally when the beaches stopped we turned inland and started up a hill. Suddenly we were in a neighborhood of large old single family homes. A couple of minutes later the cab driver pulled over and said, “Here you are, Sir, 2063.”
I took a deep breath and looked up at the building. It looked like a regular two story house that was probably built in the early part of the twentieth century and there were lights on on both the first and second floors. On the first floor there was a big picture window and I could kinda see what looked like a really comfortable living room. Somewhere in the room a lamp was casting a warm glow and despite that fact that I didn’t understand why someone would already be in my apartment, I felt drawn to the front door.