Another skull cracked under my iron-heeled boot. There was no mistaking the dry splintering of bone. I smiled. How long had I been walking in the charred wasteland? It didn’t matter. This was my dominion.
What did I believe in? I made my choice. I lit a cigarette, exactly the same way I always did. The others did not suspect me. Why would they? All that would ever be was written down. No one was allowed to read the scroll. Those were the rules. We were supposed to wait for a sign. It was a bit vague. One of us spent the equivalent of two hundred years staring at a traffic light until his head exploded. That was a sign alright.
What of destiny?
The traditionalists said the sun would go black and the moon blood-red. Which pretty much meant that when we ran out of tokens to put into the universe’s electricity meter, the cosmic plug would be pulled and those dimensions which had been so carefully folded into the unblinking vortical eyes of black holes would unfurl like the monsters from your worst nightmares.
The way I see it, even though I caused the end of the world, it was going to happen anyway so technically I had an alibi. What did you expect? I am one of the Fallen after all. The scroll was fated to be eaten. I sort of set it on fire.
Limbo was a neutral realm between Heaven and Hell. It was good to catch up with old friends and enemies. Believe it or not, we behaved ourselves. The war had been eons ago. Family is family. Limbo was just one massive entertainment complex – table-tennis, pool, arcade games, mini-golf with dwarf caddies.
The scroll was pinned to a wall near the cocktail bar. The parchment was supposed to be fire-proof. I sourced a special type of fire, God bless Bitcoin and the Dark Net. A massive fight broke out, everyone was blaming each other, you know how religion works. During the melee, I wedged open the trapdoor to Earth. The words fled the parchment, aflame in the purple sky, they sensed the noxious odour of mortality and thought they could save themselves. The words ignited as they entered the atmosphere. The humans watched in wonder…it was a divine omen. Well, not quite. I burned their sky. The blaze was awesome, it made Hell look like a beach resort.
In the beginning of the end, the Atomic Angel (That’s me! up, if I haven’t already cut them off with a sword) torched the heavens and burnt the sun. The seas, rivers and soil were already polluted. If I was blessed enough to be given a brand new planet, I would keep it tidy. Sure, I would have a party now and then but I would always clean up the empty bottles and the bloodied cadavers the next day. I rewarded human arrogance with pestilence and contagion.
God resigned his position of CEO for this universe. If the truth be told, I think he had been considering a more lucrative offer from a parallel universe. Angels formed new alliances. Some went with God. Those were optimists, the second time lucky mindset. Those that stayed in this universe were the hardcore angels. The ones who wanted a piece of the action and had no problem with another almighty war. Earth was the only planet I desired. Jesus texted me good luck. He’s still sore about the Crucifixion. Talk about holding a grudge. He wanted to pitch in with me but his Dad was having none of it. Some angels did join forces with me. Naturally, I killed them the first opportunity I got. Never trust an angel.
Earth needed a reboot, or more specifically, the human race needed a reboot. No artifice was needed. I was open about who I was, what I had done and what I intended to do, which was to slaughter a quarter of the global population. It transpired that nihilism was a powerful motivational tool for recruiting an army intent on a scorched Earth policy. I even managed to teleport in a load of dinosaurs back from the past. I dumped them in America and China to thin the numbers.
Electricity doesn’t exist any more. I had stolen the Doomsday EMP from Heaven before they shut up shop. It was configured to fry any electrical circuits but also to detonate any nuclear device. Atomic sunsets were something to behold. No one was keeping count of the dead because, yeah, there’s no internet.
All I know that is my sword’s thirst has not been slaked even though it is drenched in hot blood and caked in fleshy gore. Remove the veneer of civilisation and the human race becomes noble in its savagery. I like them now. Well, the ones on my side. There are still a few pesky angels trying to muscle in on my planet. They want the kudos of killing me. Probably because of what happened with Lucifer. He tried to pull rank on me. Hell had become so decadent, there was even a roller coaster ride. Lucifer wanted to be by God’s side again.
The human race had overreached themselves and no one had been prepared to do anything about it. Wallowing in their embalmed conceit, they had not even noticed God had abandoned them. I decided to give them a second chance.