Originally published in the MockingOwl Roost Volume 1, Issue 2: Dreams.
Erika stood at the edge of the tallest peak of the heavenly plane. Jets of celestial effluvium swirled around the angel as they breathed in the magnificent view, caught between their current home and the planet they awaited entry to. The beautiful being wore the finest garments of shimmering silver, red, green, yellow, blue, and a pearlescent white in honor of the many holidays being celebrated around the globe beneath their vision. Above, Mercury burned in distant quietude, though Erika could sense the silent thunder echoing throughout eternity and smell the sulphuric pops and rumbles of lava from the ever-raging volcanoes.
“It is time.”
Their head lifted to gaze into the expanse of the distant universe. “2020?” Erika asked.
“It is time,” the voice of their Master repeated.
The time of fascination, the time of angelic dreams had come – the time for Erika to journey to the planet known by its inhabitants as Earth.
Erika had never set foot on the planet before, but the odd colorful creatures and unusually high drama of the planet had always fascinated Erika – a chaotic mess where dreams or nightmares might turn into reality at any moment.
Erika longed to explore this strange place where the creatures “crowned with glory” by their Creator roamed about freely, making messes of nearly everything they touched, everything they dreamed, everything they thought. Erika yearned to smell the aroma of fresh falling rain and hear the songs of birds with their own ears, rather than through a radiating noise-scape that bounced throughout the dimensions and the raging of the fiery planet they had trod over and over with the creatures of many colored flames.
Erika had been waiting on Mercury or nestled among the stars by turn, eagerly, almost anxiously, for this moment.
“You shall go in August.”
“August. Yes.” Erika knew this was the time they had waited for an eternity already.
Mercury had been Erika’s home for many millennia, where they took care of the living, dancing fire creatures known to Erika and the other angels as Shanusiks. The little fire creatures often showered the angels with affectionate sparks and dazzling kisses of flame. Erika received these affections with joy in their flame-retardant robes of shimmering energy.
Earth seemed a wondrous new adventure to Erika. The strange, water-bogged world would represent a new challenge compared to this happy, flammable place that experienced naught but joy all the time. On Mercury, explosions occurred on a daily basis, with everything up in flames from morning to midnight, but on Earth, this would cause constant chaos and terror. Humans made fuss over moments which made the Mercurians giggle. But humans also seemed far more susceptible to nonsense and wonder at once with that panic.
“2020,” Erika repeated, looking at their celestial calendar painted in the star plane. They sometimes had difficulty remembering how to keep track of Earth time. It was so different from the non-terrestrial existence that the angels lived.
The little fire creatures kept Erika company as they waited back on Mercury before the final tick over of the calendar. The little Shanusiks were eager for Erika to return to them after their stint on this distant watery world. They, too, dreamed of the strange wetness so foreign to their existence on Mercury.
“Do you think it will be wonderful?” Fotia, a particular favorite Shanusik asked of Erika.
“I very much think it shall.”
The months ticked away. January. The first buddings of strange moments arose with an explosion. The Mercurians and Erika wondered at the Earth’s dismay.
February. Illness swept the land.
March. The Earth creatures hid themselves away.
Finally, the time arrived.
Erika swooped across space down onto an island which the Mercurians would most assuredly be fascinated to hear about. Erika had chosen this landing spot for this very reason, eager to return to the Shanusiks someday and tell them all about this strange place. Well, and Erika really wanted to see these universal oddities called platypuses. Part snake, part beaver, part duck! Who wouldn’t want to see those?
As Erika landed, the winds hurled the water about, tossing and churning, throwing the river back up into the sky. They looked around in wonder. “Does the water always do that?”
Everywhere Erika turned, something new and amazing caught their eye.
But the humans around them seemed to be, well, upset. Yes. Upset was the best word Erika could put to the emotions they sensed in those gawking at the water and wind dancing together up toward the sky.
“Oh, gods, won’t this year stop?” someone screamed.
Erika realized their mistake. Their iridescent robes faded into an earthly attire that Erika might blend in. It was rather uncomfortable realizing that they had caused such commotion for these sensitive, fearful creatures.Sighing, Erika resigned themselves to the predicament they had caused. Well, at least I’ll have something to tell the Shunusiks.They’ll be amazed at these colorful creatures and how they panic at water, too! But first, I’d better get to work. Now…where was that silly monolith again?