When creating an Angel, many of the traditional references bored me. The idea of a holy creature traveling lightyears, from heaven to earth, just to announce, “Don’t be scared, I just wanna tell you something”, didn’t make much sense to me. I know the Bible explained that these divine beings obey God, like no other, but there are evidence of their personalities brought up all over the Old and New Testament. My favorite one is in Revelations, where one Angel is about to unlock the gate of the Beast, a prophecied creature of epic proportions that was prepared to battle beside Satan, against God. Now, I would encourage you to read this book, because 1) it sounds awesome, but 2) it shows how bad God seriously does not want to eliminate two of his creations – 1) the Angels who fell from heaven, and 2) mankind. I imagine it’s like burning two of your novels you spent half your life writing, because they both caused something as atroucious as World War 2: on one hand, it killed a lot of innocent lives, but on the other hand, Hitler gave Germany the Volks Wagon Beetle – an economical car to save on gas, aesthetically pleasing to the eye, and had enough room for a vacation sized trunk. Today, we can’t help but buy economical vehicles to continue business and family life in our modern world.
We were talking about Angels, weren’t we? Yes. Of course we were… Anyways, there is this one particular Angel that rushed to open the gate, to release the Beast, and another Angel had to stop him/her [it] from accomplishing this task prematurely. I personally like the idea that this Angel had his last straw, and wanted to do something already. I mean, centuries of waiting on God’s timing must be excruciating! It took 400 years for Jesus to appear as the Messiah, since the prophecy was told, and look how that turned out! Poor Mary had to live with her Sister until the child was born…the shame she must’ve endured. This Angel was probably no less granted any high honor either, but it was recorded. And that problem was averted pretty quick. Even heaven has issues with micro-management. Which leads me to believe that with personalities come flaw.
Remember Lucifer? That douchebag tried to take over heaven, and ended up getting his wings clipped. Now, he roams around earth, being called Satan, or Beelzebub, or whatever dark horse character people wanna call that ex-cherubim – lying in people’s ears to deter them from God, in preparation for (yet again) the battle in Revelations. Sounds kinda like the concept of Valhalla, but that’s for another time… Imagine what it must be like to stay in heaven, still susceptible to sin and temptation – knowing that if you ever say “God sucks” that Hell was the only alternative you had. Wouldn’t you be jealous of mankind?
Think about their position (the Angels): since God is standing right next to them, in heaven, wouldn’t any form of doubt be dismissed or punished without question? In contrast with us, where we don’t see Him or hear Him, from a distance – the liberty of becoming an Atheist, Agnostic, or even Buddhist would be all too convenient – given the endured social repercussions. Wouldn’t you be mad over that clause? Humans are exempt from immediate judgement! I understand that the Angels have no reason to forget God, and just do their own thing without consent, but wasn’t that why the USA broke away from the British Empire?
So here’s the beauty of the Angel in Fate Pendulum: since God allows good and evil to choose their side, and humans have the liberty of being forgiven for their sins, until judgement day, we created an Angel that is actually irritated with mankind. His name is Creed, a Seraphim watching over Joshua Ayala – the personified gate keeper of Sheol. He is blunt, he’s sarcastic, and though he may narrate in Poems, he doesn’t show any sympathy for the poor creations God protects, before judgement day.
One other inspiration I would like to share is the Metatron from the movie Dogma. It’s a more vile version, but man, do I love him! I’ll be sure to post a picture of Creed soon enough, but for now, do enjoy the Metatron – you’ll see where I’m coming from.
I was raised to believe in God. My father was Catholic, my mother was Protestant. It was a very confusing childhood. On TV, evolution was taught to be the factual truth, while every city my family brought me to had an a occult to follow. Buddhism was soothing, while Taoism was economical, the Jewish were rich, while the Hindi were loving – so many faiths surrounded me, and it seemed we all had a problem with our parents thrusting their preferred beliefs on their children, as if we were compensating for their doubt in being in the wrong religion.
Placed in private school since kindergarten, I’ve dealt with the overzealous “I am holier than thou” Christians to the creepy bible thumpers who troll you online. But going to Village Christian High at the turn of the century, I met a completely different religion – one that didn’t need a faith. They called themselves Atheists. Much like most kids, they had problems with their parents too, but unlike us they’re parents put them through therapy. Rather than demon possession or accusations of ungodly sins, these kids were blamed for having personal problems with themselves – relieving their parents from the responsibility of actual parenting. When religious parents needed this same fix, they would turn to priests, pastors, rabbis, and monks. We would say that there was a reason for the problem, much like a Therapist, and give a verbal remedy, much like Psychologists. The only funny thing that differentiated us though were the drugs. When we were told to pray, these kids would come to class with a pill to make them happy: anti-depressants. In a way, this made me jealous. On the other hand, it made me reconsider religion. The point is, I started to think about enduring the living, rather than fearing death.
I mean, put yourself in the shoes of a Psychiatrist. Now imagine what would happen when your client was the devil himself. Can you imagine how hard it must be to tell Satan that Hell isn’t bad, and that God made a mistake? That’s how I felt about my experience with Atheists, and the Christians who then turned Agnostic after these Atheists moved into our school. I don’t know who’s bright idea it was to mix these kids in with guilt-convicting self-righteous Jesus freaks without learning or living as one, but thanks to it, I began to ask better questions than “What does God sound like?”
So then, I began to write personal sessions by myself, and would talk to everyone about believing in an invisible Deity and their purpose in life. Its incredible how many people couldn’t live with themselves, and how the practice of worship and fellowship is universal in being human. Even knowing a certain movie with a certain clique gave people a peace of mind. It felt as though anything could be a religion. And during my high school years, I felt that mine was writing. And so I wrote.
The pages of self reflection I collected in my journal turned into a script, and soon I turned it into a character. In mafia movies, they would turn to the Church for forgiveness, but in this case, I had the Black Shade turn to Dr. Gentry – an ex-exorcist turned paranormal therapist. At first, the character was just a side role for the Black Shade to develop through the story, but after a few short stories and a couple of Plays, Dr. Gentry grew into the keystone of the whole story. The more we wrote, the larger our cast of characters grew, and when each character became a complex creature, the main person to tame these beasts became the modern soothsayer: Dr. Gentry.