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An Angel is Born


She could hardly contain the enthusiasm bubbling up inside her. Again and again she ran over it in her head.

To Whomever it May Concern,

We thank you for your interest in our highly competitive intern abroad program. Every year we receive hundreds of applicants, and your application as been extensively reviewed against all the other candidates. It is our esteemed privileged to inform you that you have been selected for the program.



After the letter had arrived and she had a minor panic attack, she had redirected that energy towards packing. Deciding what to bring? What to leave? Trying to figure out if she was really ready for this.

"So how long are you going to be gone?" Came the voice from the next room. Darcey Farrow, her roommate, was obviously not as excited about the adventure Angelica was about to embark on, but was instead focused on the interest of having the room to herself for the next while.

"It's supposed to be two months." She replied weighing the pros and cons of two different shirts.

"You're really going to muck around in the dirt and sun for two whole months? Sounds dreadful." Angelica chose one and tossed the other on the bed.

"I think it will be fun. Getting my hands on the real thing, experience in the field. I might get to make a major step forward in uncovering history."

"Still sounds boring." Darcey's voice was now accompanied by running water. "So it's just going to be you and a bunch of brainy old guys?"

Angelica sighed, "Older, probably yeah. I'm not going to ancient ruins to pick up guys."

"Why not? What about, oh what's his name? Whip, hat..." The voice trailed off.

"Indiana Jones?"

"Yeah! Indiana Jones, he was an archealo-whatever, and he was pretty hot, right?" Angelica blushed despite herself.

"I'm not running off to meet Indiana Jones. I'm going to learn, and help."

"You loss." She returned her full attention to packing. It was going to be an experience, a great opportunity. Ever since her history professor had told her about the program, she had been waiting with baited breath ever since she sent in her application. The chance for real hands on work at an archaeological digsite.

"You can't learn how to do in a classroom." That's what her professor told her, and she believed it completely.

It pained her that she didn't really have anyone to share the joy with. Both of her parents were gone, no siblings, she had nobody. The professor had been excited enough for her when she told him, but Prof. Hinkley's encouragement, seemed more to her a matter of professional courtesy than an emotional obligation.

After a few more minutes of packing and unpacking as she cannibalized her things down to a single hiking pack, Darcey finally emerged from the bathroom, clad in a towel drying her blonde hair.

"So is anyone else going on this trek to boresville?"

"I think Donald Wilson is going as well."

"Oh really? Well well well." Darcey gave her an evil smile. "Maybe there's hope after all. Big strong Donald, and you said no Indiana Jones." Angelica always felt uncomfortable that Darcey always brought everything back to boys.

"I'm going out for some fresh air."

"Okay." Darcey glanced over at Angelica's things. "Maybe if you run into Donald you two can share a sleeping bag." The laughter was cut short as Angelica nearly ran into the hallway.


Sep/23/2016, 7:01 am Link to this post Email Untold Stories   PM Untold Stories Blog
 
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Re: An Angel is Born


One Week Later

The sun beat down relentlessly. Angelica knew her skin was horribly burned despite the generous amounts of sunblock she had copiously applied. I really hate being a red head, she thought bitterly as she looked up at the clear blue sky, shielding her eyes from the sun's rays.

All around the digsite was a living entity. She felt like an ant, everyone dutifully went about their jobs traversing wooden gantries, dusting away at unearthed objects, labelling said objects, inspecting items, and of course digging. Despite the dirt that caked her hands, feet, and most of the rest of her, she much prefered to find herself digging. The whole purpose was to find that one item, that one clue to the world that was long forgotten.

Though it is everyone's find really. You just want the thrill of the find. Maybe you're just trying to prove something to everyone else, or maybe you're trying to prove something to yourself. A sigh escaped her lips.

"Such a beautiful day, and you're hiding down in a ditch?" The voice froze her cold. It was strong, jovial, and warm. It was Donald. Her mind began racing in a panic trying to think what she should say, how she should react. In the end a blank was drawn and she just looked up, half-smiled, and shrugged. Idiot!

"Find anything at all? I've been helping out on the other side of the dig, and so far the most interesting thing I've found is a rock the size of my fist that almost looks like Abraham Lincoln's head." He laughed, and jumped down into the hole that Angelica was working out of. Her heart was racing and she was doing her best to push the sensations down, and focus.

"No, nothing that exciting. Just lots of dirt." As she spoke she tried to wipe her hands off on her jeans, and succeded only in smearing the dirt around.

"I can see that, quite a lot of it too. Maybe it's old dirt." She giggled, and blushed. You're acting like such a ninny! Pull yourself together.

"Do you think we'll actually make any real discoveries out here? Find some artifact from antiquity?" The smile disappeared off of his chisled features at her change of tone.

"Probably not. We're just intern's. We might find a broken piece of pottery, or an animal bone, but I doubt anything ground breaking." Angelica's shoulder's fell as he laid out his opinion. "But you never know. That's what this is all about right? The idea that you operate under a pretense until evidence apprears to provide proof to support or contest your understandings. I'm sure you'll prove me wrong." She looked up at him with a huge smile.

"Thank's Donald."

"Call me Don, really. I hate that name 'Donald' all I ever think of is 'Duck'" His charming smile flashed across his face, and she smiled. "Well, they're probably looking for me back on the other side." Glancing up at the sun, shielding his eyes with his left hand he squinted. "It's about 3:47," he lowered his hand, "so you want to grab a bite around five?"

"How did you do that?" She looked up at the sun, then back at him. As he smirked, she noticed his watch was on his left wrist. "You sneak."

"Smoke and mirrors, Angie. Smoke and mirrors. So I'll see you at five." With that he strolled back off. Leaving Angelica watching his back as he departed. Dinner? A date? Pretty weak date. No it's just a friendly dinner, chance to eat with a friendly face. But couldn't it..? Don't think about it, just get back to work. She took a deep breath, turned to look back at the patch of dirt she had been sifting through.

"No." A couple steps forward, a turn to the right, and she knelt down. "Let's try here." And she returned to her work, letting the slow and steady work of her hands block the nerves that were screaming at her over the thoughts of Donald running through her head.

Sep/23/2016, 7:01 am Link to this post Email Untold Stories   PM Untold Stories Blog
 
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Re: An Angel is Born


Five Days Later

A broken urn, and a femur had been her greatest discoveries thus far. Word was still out on the femur to determine the age, so they knew if it was a find or a crime scene. The wind picked up, sending spirals of loose dust soaring through the air. She brushed a stray hair out of her face, as she watched people scurry to ensure tarps were strapped down securely over important sites. Scanning the site, she saw all the faces she had come to know over the last ten days. Everyone had been extremely considerate and helpful as she'd expressed an overwhelming eagerness to learn.

"Miss Pope," she turned to see Dr. Ingles heading towards her. "I thought I might find you up here, fond of the promontory are you?" The promontory was the nickname the team had given the ruins that had been unearthed here well before she had arrived. Its purpose was still unknown, but due to the architectural design they believed that this was a high balcony overlooking a vast open chamber. She hadn't been able to hear more about some of the more interesting finds that had been made, but the most curious feature of the building was that the only entry ways seemed to be located below the believed ground level of the time.

"It does afford somewhat of a grand view does it not?"

"I don't know why but it makes me feel like I'm flying, that I can see the whole world from up here."

"Well don't go flying away yet, we've actually found something I'd like to share with you. Please, come." For a moment she was struck still by surprise. He wants to show me something? I wonder what it could be. As he lead her down the amazingly preserved stone stairway to the ground level she saw Donald, No it's Don, racing towards her.

"Angie!" He ran up, and stopped. "Dr. Ingles is-" He paused. "Apparently with you."

"Yes, I found her Mr. Wilson. Though I appreciate the determination with which you set about your task." They all chuckles, Donald a bit embarassed.

"Is he coming as well?" Angelica inquired hopefully.

"I don't see why not, can't be any harm in the matter." As they wound their way through the digsite, Angelica realized that they were headed to one of the larger tents that had been bustling with activity lately.

"Thanks Angie, I don't think he was going to let me in on the secret." It was a whisper, as he leaned in close to her. She could smell him, it was earthy and manly, and she quickly cleared her head of those thoughts.

"Well maybe if you spent more time doing what you were supposed to, and less time joking, they'd be more inclined to teach you." She whispered back. While she had been diving into this experience with both feet, Donald seemed to be treating the internship as a getaway.

"True. You're right, you are so right." He nodded understandingly. "I just can't help it when the scenery is so beautiful." The blush came unbidden, and she was grateful for the fact that her burned skin would hide it. Dr. Ingles stopped right outside the tent, and turned to face them.

"All right we are going inside. Now please be aware that what you see you are not to discuss outside of this digsite as we are still attempting to discern what it is we have actually found. I am bringing you inside here so that you can see some of our more laborious work in action, and that perhaps you might be a part of the discovery. Now please be careful what you touch, Mr. Wilson." With that he pulled the flap aside and motioned them to enter.

Inside was a marvel. Machines were set up, storage units were littered about, and people were busy transiting back and forth. What drew Angelica's attention however was what was in the middle. It was a statue, about ten feet in height. The right arm and head were missing, but what remained was in unbelievable condition for something that had been buried for years, from what she could see it was a man, in armor, his right arm would have stretched upwards to the heavens.

"This has been the cause of much concern for us."

"It's amazing." Angelica's voice was a whisper as she took it all in.

"When we first unearthed it, we thought it was an incredible find. However examinations into the art style, detail, and fashion of the statue did not match the period for our dig, nor the geographical location. This led us to believe that it was an elaborate hoax. In attempts to carbondate the statue we have determined that it is in fact around 1600 years old, but more curious the statue itself is not made of any material we can identify."

"But then how did you car-"

"Good question, Miss Pope. We tested the material buried with it." Though the Doctor smiled at her, she pursed her lips in thought. Made of an unknown material? Hundreds of years old? What does that mean? Aliens?

"Whatever it is made out of seems to have preserved it well. If it has lasted the test of time so well, why are pieces missing?"

"A very astute observation, Mr. Wilson. As we currently have chemists and geologists testing the material to try and identify it, our most plausible theory is a dramatic event."

"You mean, earthquake, volcanic eruption, meteor strike and the like?" Angelica offered.

"All are possibilities. Considering the sunken entry to the promontory it would lend evidence to the plausibility of such an event, though we are trying to track any records that might provide more clues." She was elated with this puzzle, and looked over to Don to see if he shared her enthusiasm. His expression was pensive, and a bit bored.

"Thank you for showing us this, sir."

"My pleasure, I felt you should see this as it gives you a taste of some of the hardships that come with the territory. You don't just have to find something. You have to find it, prove you found it, prove why it's their, and then apply it to history." He moved back towards the entrance. "We should get out of the way now."

Once Dr. Ingles had bid his farewells for the time being, Angelica animatedly turned to Donald. "Isn't that fascinating? A new element and a mystery hundreds of years old."

"I think it's actually a little worrying." He paused, but her confused look prompted him to explain. "Angie, imagine that you thought you knew what is going on. You might not have all the facts, but you have the idea. You know that red is red. Then one day somebody digs something up and says red is no longer red, it's yellow. That means that everything you ever thought you knew is wrong." He trailed off.

"I never thought about it that way. But maybe it's not a contradiction but an omission from history. Something that was simply forgotten."

"Or put away." His tone had turned very serious, and was draining her enthusiasm. "I'm sorry. I just have a bad feeling about all this. Like there's something that's better left buried."

"It's just history, Don. It's not like anything here is possibly going to hurt us unless you fall in a ditch." She laughed, and got a weak smile from him in response.

"You're right. I think I'm just weirded out by the strangeness of what I saw in there. I'll be fine." Without warning he leaned in and gave her a quick kiss. "Catch up with you later, Angie." As he walked off she was still standing in shock. He kissed me. Oh my god, he kissed me. What are you waiting for then, run after him? No. No. Be strong, you have plenty more time.

Sep/23/2016, 7:02 am Link to this post Email Untold Stories   PM Untold Stories Blog
 
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Re: An Angel is Born


Two Days Later

"Egad." Angelica exclaimed to herself as she pushed back the collar of her t-shirt. There was a stark line where the bright red of her neck met the milky white of her collar bone. "I should have brought SPF ten million, and wore a bikini." She mentally pictured herself digging through the dirt with a trowel wearing a bikini, and giggled.

"I miss out on the joke?" It was Don't voice, he'd been aloof since the day they'd been allowed to see the statue, and she guessed it was on his mind as much as hers.

"No, just imagining a ridiculous scenario. What's up?"

"Just thought I'd come and find you, since I've actually been working lately."

"See, it's fun isn't it?" Angelica smiled sweetly at him.

"No, it's still boring as anything." He chuckled, "but my interest has been struck, so I figure it's worth a shot. Besides if you enjoy it, there has to be something to it." That warmth in her cheeks came flooding through her body. Get a grip. "It's really been eye opening spending this time with you, Angie. You've shown me a lot of great things about so m-"

"What was that?" She suddenly yelled off into the distance. "Coming! I have got to go, Don. We'll catch up around lunch, yeah?" And she ran. What are you doing? Go back! I freaked. Then unfreak and go back. Too late now. He probably thinks you're a total spaz. A sigh escaped her chapped lips as she ran down to where she had been digging earlier. Staring at the tools, and the dirt she kicked at it.

"Such a scared ninny." She wanted to scream at herself, and instead kicked the trowel as hard as she could. It hit the side of the pit, and some of the loose dirt tumbled down. As it fell, something caught her eye, the faintest flash of something shiney. "What was that?"

Walking slowly over she kneeled down, and peered closer. Sure enough there was the faintest bit of something silvery packed inside the dirt. Probably a soda can, or a quarter, she thought bitterly, but despite her misgivings she began scraping away around it. As she worked her way around the object the consistency had shifted from packed dirt to clay, which struck her as extremely odd. For a fleeting moment she thought to call for somebody, but quickly dismissed that idea. What if it's nothing?

Ten minutes of work later she wrenched the object free of its earthen prison. Looking down at it, she was amazed. Nestled in her hands was a beautiful circlet made of untarnished silver. Upon the front of it was a single ruby, that seemed to wink and sparkle with a life of its own. This is something major. I should get Dr. Ingles. She stood, but then stopped. Angelica told herself to keep moving, but nothing happened. What is happening? I'm frightened.

She tried to scream, but no sound escaped her lips. Slowly she began to raise the circlet up. Inside of her head she was screaming out, a deafening frightened tumult of sound, but her lips remained silent. As she raised the circlet up over her head, she saw Don appear on the edge of the pit.

"Angie, I'm sorry if I came off a little strong. I'm sorry I just-" Then he took in the scene before him. "What are you doing Angie? Are you alright?"

No I'm not all right! Help! Inside her head she was sobbing and crying, as Don moved closer looking concerned and worried. Then the hands that were no longer under her control placed the circlet upon her brow.

"Angie?"

"FREEDOM!" Cried out a voice that was not her voice. It rumbled inside her head, and echoed off the clouds. Then came the power. It was like being hit by a tidal wave as uncontrolled waves of power flowed into her, and had nowhere to go. Flames appeared all around her, dancing along her skin and blazing in he eyes.

"Angie?!" Don fell over backwards, fear written across his face. The power filled her up, and kept coming. There was a wrenching feeling in the pit of her stomach, and then there was only fire. Waves of scorching flame pulsed out from her burning all that stood in their path.

NO! She screamed, but still no sound came. Her ears will filled with the crackle of flames, the pulse of heat, and the screams of people in agony. Before her eyes she watched Don's stricken features blasted by flame, shrivel and turn black, then the skin began to peel away from his scorched bones. All she could do was cry, but even her tears were lost as they evaporated upon her cheeks.

It had only been a few minutes when the flames finally dissipated and she fell to her knees. She wrenched violently and threw up the contents of her stomach on the charred earth. Then she cried.

"What happened? What have I done? All those people." Standing, and surveying the scene, the dig was no more. Machines, tents, people, papers; nothing had survived the conflagration of fire that had consumed it. The wind picked up, carrying with it the smell of burned flesh and smoke. A blonde hair blew in her face.

"What have I become?" In the distance she could hear sirens. "I-I can't stay here. I have to go. I-" She turned and started to run, then found that her feet were leaving the ground, and she was rising into the air. In her ears was the sound of beating wings. "What have I become?"

There was no way of telling how long she'd blacked out for, she just knew that she was missing a large chunk of time. At first she had hoped that it was all just some horrible nightmare, but when she looked around she knew it wasn't. Currently she was a great distance up in the air, over an expansive body of water. The wind was whipping past her face, and there was a cool breeze, and although she could feel the cool air on her skin she didn't feel at all cold.

She tried to take a look at herself, but that proved difficult, all she managed was a look at her hands which had longer much finer nails, and down her front. Well, those certainly don't look like mine. Her attire had seemed to change as well, to a suit of gleaming armor. Despite her efforts to move around, she'd only been able to get her neck and arms to respond to her, but knew her legs were bare.

"What is going on?" Her words were carried away on the wind. "You foolish girl you should have just left it alone." A sigh escaped her lips. "And where the heck am I taking myself?" It sounded weird to say, but she was determined to keep things in perspective. Taking a deep breath she tried to change direction. She wasn't sure how it would be accomplished, but she felt that something had to happen. First she tried wriggling her body side to side, then flexing the muscles in her back, and even tried thinking 'left' as hard as she could. Nothing seemed to work.

"Great, so I'll just coast along, and slam into a mountain or something. Wonderful." With a great effort she flailed wildly, and screamed, but whatever was driving her carried her onward.

Why do you struggle?

A 'meep' escaped her lips as the voice seemed to come from nowhere. It reverberated around her skull and made her eyes feel like they were burning. What was that?

What implies identity. Why do you struggle?

Okay, it can read my mind. That means it knows what you're thinking now. Crud. Angelica took a deep breath. Where are you, or I, or we.. us? Whatever. Going?

To seek out justice. To bring balance. To right wrongs.

Certainly doesn't seem so bad. What about, images of the digsite flooded into her mind and she began to cry, hearing all of their screams still resounding in her head.

The vessel was weak, unprepared. Though none can escape judgement.

There was something cold and unsettling about the voice pounding her skull. She had the overwhelming feeling that lives were insignificant to whatever it was.

You shall find the wicked, and you shall unleash fiery vengeance upon them. Cleanse the world.

Fear welled up inside her as it spoke. I could take the thing off, would that get rid of it? But then what? Swim however many miles to shore? And what if somebody else finds this thing? No. This is my problem now. It was as though a great weight had suddenly fallen upon her shoulders. Fine, you want to 'punish' then I need to learn.

Very well.

And in a flash things seemed so much easier. She willed herself to change direction, and she effortless soared that way. This is incredible. Now, where to go?
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Re: An Angel is Born


Wow I loved this story.

---

Sep/24/2016, 7:18 pm Link to this post Email Supergirly   PM Supergirly Blog
 


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