Back at his apartment, the warrior fell onto the bed and cried out to God. “Oh God, I feel so helpless! This whole thing is my fault…. I am to blame.” He struggled with his thoughts, angry with himself as his cries were answered with silence. The warrior reflected on the irony of the situation in his prayers. Before, the choice had been his, but afterwards the choice was not. His breathing filled the empty room and he felt utterly spent and alone. There was nothing he could do that would undo what had been done. The pain in his gut felt like someone had taken an ice cream scoop and removed his intestines.
He waited for God to strike him down, but it would not be forthcoming. Tiny spots on the wall and ceiling stared back at him as he finished his prayers. One thing he knew he did not want was for his girlfriend to arrive. He was not ready for that. She had betrayed him! Cheating with another guy, dumping him, anything would have been better than this. He wondered if God felt as hurt by his choice as he did by hers. He grabbed a jacket and headed for the door.
The warrior left his apartment and began walking. He needed time to sort out his thoughts, and some physical exertion to assist with that. Being a blue collar guy he was used to pushing his body, so he set off into the night. No stars were out; the sky overhead was an overcast darkness. He pushed himself, alternately jogging and walking, with no destination in mind.
Hours passed and the rain began to fall. He gasped with exhaustion as he neared the center of town, the exercise briefly minimizing his deep anguish. The rain soaked his clothes like pain soaked his soul. Bleary eyed, haggard and disheveled, he sloshed under the streetlights, the sky now turning to a dull gray with the approaching morning.
And there in front of him across the street emerged a three story brick building, Spartan in its barren, utilitarian appearance. Black letters near the door clarified through the rain as he approached. “Women’s Health Center,” they read.
The realization of where he now stood startled him. He fell to his knees in the wet grass and began to pray once more, head bowed as tears from heaven poured over him. His thoughts this time were private, personal; shared only between himself and his Creator. Even if his thoughts could be known, words would not suffice to express them. Time passed.
Rufus padded through the wet mud, the earthy wetness of the dim morning alive in his nostrils, fur matted against his body like the hair of a 6 year old schoolboy. He panted with joy- how fun it was to get out of the back yard! As he rounded the corner next to the yard where the warrior kneeled in prayer, something alerted him. He skidded, splishing to a halt- ears straight up, haunches tense. Deep brown eyes darted about. “Ain’t me, baby!” he might have said if he could speak, as his fight or flight mechanism kicked in and he bolted away.
Unknown to the warrior, unseen things were set in motion. Orders were sent. Spiritual forces were dispatched. Angels engaged in silent, invisible combat, the nature of which we lack the capacity to understand on this earth. Inhuman spirits were forced back finally fleeing, but they would return.
The patrol car pulled up to the curb. “Great,” the officer thought as he shifted into park. “There’s another nutcase that does not know how to stay off private property.” He retrieved his clipboard and got out of the vehicle, flipping on the blue strobes. He figured he would take care of it before the workers arrived and had to call to have the trespasser removed.
Tiny particles of concrete separated from one another. Metallic steel bonds also stood aside cleanly dividing. It was such a small thing- although it was certainly not natural. The process continued in a fraction of a second, as molecules of clay, long hardened, became soft along a single plane as thin, transparent forces passed through them.
“Hey buddy. Get up,” the officer ordered, approaching. The warrior did not respond, remaining penitent in his silent cry to God. He did not know it was a police officer addressing him, not that it would have mattered much to him right now. The deputy tapped the clipboard against his free hand- it appeared as if this punk wanted things to go down the *hard way.* He sighed, getting out his handcuffs, ready to give the guy one last chance. He hated filling out paperwork first thing on a shift.
The angels, surrounded by piercingly bright spheres of light well beyond white, sheathed their crystalline swords, their assignment nearly complete. It wasn’t often they were ordered to use them on physical objects. Great wings unfurled as they spread out to protect those nearby.
A deep rumbling came from the building as both the officer and the warrior looked up. The ground all around trembled as if a massive bass speaker was hidden just beneath it. Water puddles in the grass leapt up in small waves as the walls started falling outwards. Detached ceilings and floors crashed down in a mighty implosion of metal, glass, equipment and furniture as a concussive wave of wind and debris forced the men back into the ground. A second later the four outer walls of brick and masonry slammed into the yard with the force of a minor cataclysm. Water sprayed out explosively like a thousand stinging needles. Fortunately, the men were in the 90 degree corner arc away from the building, and escaped the falling wall of destruction.
The officer was stunned, but had enough mind to jump on the warrior, wrestling his hands behind his back as he attached the cuffs. He punched the button on the mike at his shoulder. “Code 999 Bravo. I repeat, code 999 Bravo. The Women’s Health Center has been destroyed. Officer needs assistance. Suspect in custody.”