A godfather of baby angels spread all over the world has his work cut out for him.
|Vaz remembered what an angel had told him about an infant angel, who was to help to save the world from its depravity:
Next, go to Licia, whose soul is charitable. She is in the metropolis of Parra Sieta, in the care of her adoptive mother, a prostitute named Sarya. Sarya is a kind-hearted woman who has gone astray. But she is under the influence of a monstrous man, a man without virtue, reason, or mercy.
“Sarya,” said a man. Sarya turned reluctantly to face him. The man snapped his fingers. Sarya followed him as he walked in front of her, her face lowered. The man was becoming a regular.
“Licia, Licia,” hummed another man, inside a home which lacked a door. He stood over a baby’s cradle, looking down at an infant, who was remarkably quiet and also incredibly pretty for its age.
“Licia, Licia, pretty honey,” he hummed. “Your little body’s made of money, money.” He started. Another man was standing in the doorway. “This is a private residence,” said the first man sternly.
“I’m a friend of Sarya,” said Vaz.
“Sarya has only one friend, Mister,” grumbled the man by the cradle. “And that’s me. Other than that, she’s only got customers, you understand? Now beat it.”
“You’re wrong,” said Vaz. “She does have friends, as does the baby.” The other man’s face glowered.
“They’re mine, do you hear me!?” he said loudly. “They belong to me! Now get out of my sight before I call the guards!” Vaz leapt toward him and slashed with his sword. The man stumbled back, a gash in his body which should have been mortal. But once the man’s surprise wore off, he grinned; it was the strangest thing Vaz ever saw, to see the man grinning there, though blood gushed from his open chest. Vaz swung mightily and beheaded the man. To Vaz’s horror, the grin on the man’s face only widened, baring more of his yellow teeth.
“You must be that famous knight,” hissed the grotesque, bleeding head. “We thought our friends had killed you, hehe. We’ve got our own knight though, better, as has been proven already, hehe.” Vaz swung again, cutting the head in two; but the head appeared to melt quickly, and acid burned into the dirt where the head had sat. The gory body of the dead man, however, inconveniently remained.
“Sarya?” said Vaz. Sarya turned to face him. She was a very pretty woman of thirty or so years. They stood several feet outside of her home. “Sarya, your manager asked me to give you a message. He said he had been invited to the royal palace, and that he would spend the weekend there.”
“Oh,” said Sarya, puzzled. “Then, who will watch the baby while I work?” she wondered aloud.
“I volunteer,” said Vaz.
“Who are you?” she asked suspiciously.
“I think the safest description of me,” said Vaz, “is the godfather of your adopted infant.” Sarya was taken aback. “Licia’s parents are not now in the world. I’m sure that they would thank you for taking care of the infant; and as far as I am concerned, the child may be yours; but only on the condition that you change your occupation and move to a different city, away from that horrid manager of yours. I offer my help to you.”
“But what shall I do?” cried Sarya.
“Do you have any skills?” Sarya thought.
“I am a good sewer,” she said. “My mother taught me. She was a seamstress.”
“Aha,” said Vaz, and he smiled warmly. “Then you shall be a seamstress. It is an eminently respectable profession. Come on, good Sarya. We leave for Peeres in the Kingdom of Shozan tonight.”
Vaz left Sarya’s home, which she shared with another family. A month had elapsed since they had arrived in the busy city of Peeres, and Sarya was working as a seamstress, which was sufficient to pay for her rent and food.
As Vaz entered the marketplace, he saw, amidst a catacomb tunnel of shaded stalls, a tall, beautiful woman with long brown hair, nude, with large white, feathery wings folded behind her back, walking toward him. The shadows that normally darkened the tunnel were vanquished by a striking and extremely bright white light that emanated from her. He was surprised, not as much by the angel, with whom he was acquainted, as by the fact that she was in a crowded marketplace, nude, winged, and all.
“I assure you, Vaz, that you alone can see me here,” she said.
“Lucky me,” he said, smiling.
“Indeed. I have sad news for you, Vaz. Two of your wards have perished, bringing the total number of dead infants to three.”
“How!?” he asked, horror-stricken.
“As with the poor prince,” she said, “I do not know. Darkness darker than black comes and goes, leaving the babies dead in its wake. We have our suspicions.”
“The pimp I slew to free Sarya seemed to be demonically possessed,” said Vaz. “He mentioned a knight in their service - the service of demons, I suppose.”
“I think it is Babenlo,” said the angel. “And I think I know where he is going to go next.”