A/N: Hello again! Yes, I know that it has been quite some time since my last update on any of my stories. However, with everything going on this year beginning with my grandfather dying after a long time of suffering (not Covid luckily) and a shit ton of other things happening I simply wasn't in the mood to write.
However, this time has – hopefully – passed, and I'm up to writing again.
Chapter 63: The Greatest and Most Incompetent Asshole in the Universe
What none of the people in the room saw or realised in their worry over Castiel was, that when Harry realised what had happened, he vanished. Another thing that they didn't know was that a certain toad had snuck into the hood of Harry's hoody and left with him.
When Harry reappeared, he stood in a beautiful garden. It was a large clearing surrounded by high trees. Flowers of many colours sprinkled the lush green grass, and in the middle, a vast in full bloom cherry tree stood proudly. Beneath it, a bench stood with a perfect view of the garden. To the right, a small stream ran through the clearing. It was a peaceful place. Harry had to admit that he very much wanted to stay for some time. However, he was on a mission that was far more important than relaxing in this garden. It wasn't as if he couldn't come back at a later point in time.
That was when a voice ripped him from his musing.
"Well, Hello. You must be Harry Potter," a voice from somewhere behind Harry greeted him.
Harry whipped around so fast that one had to worry whether he got whiplashed.
"Who are you?" he demanded to know, suspicious about the apparent angel.
The man was dark-skinned and looked friendly enough, but Harry had enough bad encounters with angels that he was cautious with anyone he didn't know.
"I'm Joshua and the caretaker of this beautiful garden," he introduced himself with a sweeping motion towards the garden. "I promise you that I mean you no harm."
Hearing the angel's name, Harry relaxed a bit. Loki told him about the angel. Should he be Joshua, he wouldn't harm him.
"Oh, hello then. I'm sorry that I was so unfriendly. Still, I learned to be cautious around angels," he said with an apologetic shrug.
"Understandable with everything Zachariah did to you and your friends. I assume that you're here because of him?"
"He went too far today. You gonna stop me?" Harry asked with narrowed eyes, wondering whether he'd have to fight yet another angel.
Joshua laughed at that.
"Quite the contrary. Follow me. I show you the perfect place to set up your retaliation," he instructed the boy before turning around and walking towards the tree line.
Harry blinked a few timed in surprise, but with a shrug, he set into motion and quickly caught up with the angel.
"How do you know what I want to do?" he wondered in curiosity.
"I don't know what you want to do exactly. But I was informed that it is very likely you'll show up after what Zachariah did," Joshua explained with a smile.
Harry frowned for a moment but then remembered what Loki told him about the angel.
"So you do talk to God when he isn't in heaven?" he concluded.
"It is not so much talking than more listening to what he has to say and relay important information," Joshua corrected him. "You see father often has to leave to other universes when there is a problem he is needed for. He then talks to me to show that he still cares. I'm unfortunately not powerful enough to reply, so it is only a one-sided conversation.
"Normally he is only away for a few years, a decade at most. This is the longest he has been away. Unfortunately, his absence led the others to believe that he won't return, no matter what I told them. That, in turn, caused the current situation. However, recently, and I can't thank you enough for your help in this, things turned for the better again. Hopefully, soon everything will be back to normal."
"I don't see how I did much to help with this situation," Harry replied with a shake of his head while stepping around a tree.
"So you're not planning on forcing Michael and Lucifer to talk about everything instead of battling it out? You didn't help Sam and Dean see the error of their ways? You didn't reunite Gabriel with one of his sons?" Joshua challenged him, his eyes sparkling with amusement.
"Yeah sure, I did that. But wasn't it for Loki helping me first, nothing of that would have happened. I think he deserves the thanks more than me."
"You shouldn't sell yourself short. Of course, Gabriel did a lot too, and I'm also grateful for what he did. But that doesn't mean that you had to do what you did," the angel scolded him lightly. "Anyway, we're here."
Together they stepped out of the forest and onto a large plaza. In the middle stood a large fountain while surrounding the plaza were tall white buildings. Broken up was it by smaller and larger grassed areas with flowers and trees. Surprisingly it wasn't that much different to plazas in human cities other than that it was much brighter.
A lot of angels were milling around or standing in clusters talking to each other, completely ignoring the two. Harry looked around in astonishment.
"I wouldn't have thought that heaven looked so…so human," Harry muttered.
"And what did you think it would look like?" Joshua amusedly asked. "Just because we're higher beings than humans doesn't mean that we don't have or need an infrastructure. However, I have to admit that the perception of it differs from person to person. This is the main plaza, and I think the perfect place to set up whatever you have planned. Everyone comes here at least once a day to mingle and talk."
"I don't know what I expected but somehow not this. But it is perfect for what I planned," Harry replied before he set to work with a low cackle.
Not soon later in front of the fountain, a large black marble pedestal grew from the ground upon which a white marble statue of Zachariah throned. On every side of the pedestal was a golden plate embedded with an inscription.
This is a monument to
The greatest and most incompetent asshole in the universe
Over it, and for everyone to see, hovered three massive tv screens arranged in a triangle and repeatedly showing Zachariah's misdeeds. The first one being when he chased Harry all over the world only to land in a lake of hellfire, followed by how he tried to get Harry possessed by a demon. Rounded up was everything by him trying to kill Loki only to be bested by the archangel. Loki showed Harry the memories of that encounter as a way to calm him and show him how hard it is to kill him.
"Nicely done," Joshua, who amusedly watched the reactions of the angels currently present, complimented him. "However, I think something vital is missing."
With a flick of his hand, Joshua added a fourth memory to the three playing one. It was the one where Zachariah and Uriel tortured poor Castiel. Though to Harry's curiosity, the focus was definitely on Zachariah. Not that Uriel was doing much anyway.
The reaction of the angels milling around was instantaneous. They all turned to the new addition to the plaza, watching interestedly what the screens were showing. However, the longer and more often they observed the memories, the more their amusement rose over Zachariah's stupidity. The only thing that worried them was how eagerly he tortured one of his own.
Harry was just about to add a second monument for Uriel when he heard an angry shout echoing over the place. On the opposite side of the plaza, Zachariah appeared. He watched the happening with mute horror before storming up to the monument. Uriel, who came with him, just stood there shaking his head over the other angel's behaviour.
"Who did this?" Zachariah demanded to know. "If I find whoever did this, he will be in a world of pain!"
Upon the threat, every angel took a step away from Zachariah. Considering that the monitors were currently showing how he tortured Castiel, it was a very valid fear.
Zachariah in the meantime, let his gaze wander over the plaza to find the culprit when he saw Harry standing to the side with Joshua.
"You, Potter!" he roared. "This was your doing, wasn't it?!"
With a flick of his hand, Zachariah had his angel blade in hand and stormed towards the boy. Harry however merely looked at the angel challengingly and vanished just as Zachariah reached him. With another roar, the angel followed suit and disappeared too.
When Harry reappeared, he blushed heavily once he realised just where he landed precisely. It was a large room with more pillows and blankets than he ever saw in one place. Throughout the room were groups of two or more obvious male demons engaging in activities that were indeed not appropriate for Harry to see.
However, soon his embarrassment morphed into glee when he realised what this meant for Zachariah.
"Hey there," he called out to get the demons' attention.
Some of the demons turned to him with a hateful glare for him interrupting them.
"What do you want?" one of them demanded to know. "Who are you anyway?"
Harry smirked, this was perfect.
"Name's Harry Potter. You see, soon an angel will show up, and I would be very grateful would you...occupy him for some time. Just don't rape or physically torture him, okay?"
Upon hearing his name, a few blanched. They certainly didn't want to be the ones to anger Harry and with that, draw Crowley's ire upon them should the boy decide to prank hell. When Harry's words registered with them, though, a grin appeared on their faces.
"Well, in that case, it will be our pleasure to help you," one of them replied, relaxing again when he realised that Harry wasn't here for them.
It was thanks to Crowley that most of the demons by now knew who Harry is together with a warning that should they cross the boy or worse harm him, they would have to pay a very high price for it. Released concurrently with a list of Harry's – slightly embellished – feats it created a fearsome reputation. Those who weren't intimidated at least didn't want to cross Crowley. Though as long as Harry wasn't in danger should he decide to take another trip to hell, Crowley wasn't overly concerned about the reason for why they wouldn't attack him.
Harry was just about to reply something, when the angel he was talking about appeared before him, completely unaware of into which situation he brought himself, again.
"Well, well, well, if it isn't the supreme asshole Zachariah," Harry mocked him. "You know, trying the same thing over and over again while expecting a different result is plain stupid. However, with your current record, your intelligence is questionable at best. So have fun! Toodles!"HH
The last two things he saw before vanishing again, was for one Zachariah squealing when he was grabbed by three of the demons and his blade confiscated. The second thing was Trevor hopping out of his hood and transforming into a tanned young man with a smirk that told of nothing good.
Reappearing in heaven, Harry saw that Uriel had walked over to Joshua while he was away and was now talking to him in hushed voices.
"Harry, this is Uriel," Joshua introduced him. "Uriel, this is Harry Potter."
Uriel warily watched the young boy. When Joshua told him that he could trust the boy, he questioned the other angel's sanity for even suggesting such a thing. As if he would ever trust a mud-monkey. But then the boy showed up again, and Uriel had to say that he was intrigued.
Not only did he best Zachariah multiple times now according to the still playing memories. He also had an aura that brimmed with power. There was also the fact that he seemingly could teleport into and out of heaven unseen and without effort. So, considering that Zachariah has yet to show up again, he was wary about the boy.
"I know," Harry hissed frostily while glaring at the angel. "Give me one good reason for why I shouldn't give him the same treatment than Zachariah?"
Joshua sighed deeply, he had to defuse the situation. "Yes, Uriel isn't innocent of what happened to Castiel, but I promise you that it will be beneficial for you if you give him the chance to explain himself."
Though Harry and Uriel just continued to glare at each other, neither wanting to back down. In the end, Harry huffed and nodded.
"Okay, you'll get one chance to tell me what is going on. You should make the explanation a good one, though. Because shouldn't I like it, you'll join that bastard Zachariah faster than you can beg for my forgiveness," he told the angel with a smile that looked downright evil.
"What happened to Zachariah?" Uriel questioned cautiously.
"Well, dropped him at the tail end of an all-out, gay demon orgy and a good friend of mine ensured that he cannot get away anytime soon."
Uriel took a step back upon that proclamation, looking at Harry with wide eyes. This was indeed someone he shouldn't anger if he was able to trap an angel. Slowly but surely, Uriel was beginning to question whether those mud-monkeys were as powerless as he believed.
"Are you sure I can trust him?" he asked Joshua.
Joshua merely threw him a glare, silently asking whether he didn't trust him.
Uriel sighed but with a wave of his hand conjured three chairs while erecting a privacy bubble around them and sat down, motioning for the others to follow. While he did trust Joshua as the angel had yet to lie to him or lead him astray, he certainly didn't trust the other angels. He, therefore, wanted to keep their conversation away from their ears.
"Very well," he began, wondering where to start but decided to be honest to the boy. He had a feeling that lying to him would be a terrible idea. "Yes, I had a part in torturing Castiel, but I was certainly not eager to do so. While I have no qualms about humans, my brothers and sisters I would never willingly harm if possible."
"But why did you then torture Castiel?" Harry demanded to know. "If you're so reluctant to harm one of your own then why haven't you…I don't know…refused to participate?"
"Because Raphael ordered me to and I couldn't not obey him," Uriel snapped back, enraged that this mud-monkey dared to question him.
Harry glared at the angel for snapping at him like that but decided that there currently were more important things than teaching him a lesson. It seemed that Uriel had valuable information.
"Why couldn't you not obey him?" Harry asked, confused.
Uriel sighed again, but when he received an encouraging nod from Joshua, he continued. He certainly didn't want this to get out because he would have to flee heaven if it did. However, there was something about that boy that made him trust him not to reveal it.
"Because of my other orders," he continued in a low voice. "Before he was banned from heaven and locked in the cage, Lucifer asked me to keep an eye out in heaven. He knew that something was amiss, and he wanted to know what it was."
"Wait, you were in Lucifer's garrison?" Harry exclaimed.
Uriel nodded while wondering why Harry was so excited about this. He would have thought that, with the reputation Lucifer had with those mud-monkeys, Harry would react negatively to this revelation.
"I have to admit that you're not reacting as I expected you would upon mentioning Lucifer," he said musingly.
Harry though snorted. "And how should I have reacted in your opinion?" he challenged. "Running away in fear? Please…I'm friends with several angels, demons, pagan gods, demigods, werewolves and whatnot. As long as you don't do anything that might harm my family and friends or I otherwise deem unacceptable, I could care less who or what you are. Since Lucy never did anything in that regard…. Anyway, you said that Lucy thought something was amiss. Want to elaborate?"
Uriel, in the meantime, stared at Harry as if he had never met someone like him and to be honest, he never did. No one, and he meant absolutely no one who was not his father, was this open. Everyone was biased or didn't like a certain race, species, religion and whatnot. Most of the angels hated, or at least heavily disliked, humans and demons while demons didn't like angels. Humans, on the other hand, didn't like anyone who didn't fit their definition of normal. So yes, Uriel had no idea what to think anymore.
Then there was the fact that he called Lucifer "Lucy" as if it was the most normal thing in the world.
He was ripped from his musings when Harry coughed amusedly. Uriel let out a low growl before he continued.
"Could you please refrain from calling him Lucy?"
"Why would I do that?" Harry wondered. "She likes it when I call him that."
Okay, what?! Did that boy just imply that he not only knows Lucifer but is also close enough to him to be allowed to call him Lucy? Not only allowed but expected? Uriel had a feeling that he missed something vital.
"How do you know Lucifer?"
That question surprised Harry as he expected that by now, everyone knew about his short stay in the cage. It wasn't that he kept it a secret.
"You don't know?" he asked for clarification, but Uriel just shook his head. "This summer, when Zachariah tried to get me possessed by a demon, I teleported away from him and accidentally landed in Lucifer's cage."
"That is impossible," Uriel instantly retorted.
"Yeah well, doesn't change the fact that it happened," he replied, but it was evident, that Uriel didn't believe him.
Harry let his eye wander over the plaza and the still animatedly talking angels, wondering how to proceed. He believed Uriel when he said that he was forced to torture Castiel and watching the scene on the TV, the lack of actual participation from the angel only reinforced this belief. However, he also couldn't just let it slide, a fitting punishment had to be found.
Then there was the fact that Uriel knew more about what was going on in heaven. Lucifer already told him that he thought something was going on, especially since Michael seemed of the opinion that with creating the demons he went against fathers orders. However, Michael should have known that it was quite the contrary. That was part of the reason why Harry agreed to listen to Uriel instead of hexing him to hell and back. He wanted to find out why most angels and even other beings were so grossly misinformed.
What was obvious though, was that Uriel didn't trust him one jota and thusly wouldn't tell him anything. That was when an idea came to Harry. Maybe he would be more inclined to talk to Lucifer.
"Okay, how about a little deal Uriel," he addressed the dark-skinned angel. "I know that you don't trust me and are even less inclined to believe me. So how about a proposition?
"First: Once he is better, you'll go to Castiel and apologise for what you did. Explain to him why you did it and couldn't not do it. It is his choice whether he forgives you or not, but at least he'll understand.
"Second: Those who I consider mine are off-limits. So, no torturing them," he continued, holding up his hand to stop Uriel from interrupting him. "I know what you told me and I'm not saying that you should risk your cover. Should Raphael again decide that he wants you to torture one of mine, feel free to inform him that he'll have to deal with me. He is invited to ask Crowley just how bad an idea that is."
"Crowley?" Uriel asked in disbelieve. "The king of the crossroad demons?"
"Told you that I'm friends with demons. I'm even on friendly terms with Alastair," Harry retorted with a shrug. "Anyway, where was I? Ah, yes.
"Third: Should you decide to work with me I don't expect you to like everyone I call a friend, but I at least expect some common courtesy."
Uriel let out a derisive snort.
"Why would I want to work with you? For that matter why should I defer to your demands? I don't see that you could offer me anything of value in return."
"Oh, I don't know…maybe because we have the same goals?" he asked tauntingly. "As to what I can offer you in return…."
Here he pulled out his phone and began to type away.
"How about supplying you with the possibility to call Lucifer whenever and wherever you want?" he said with a smirk pressing another button on his phone.
A/N: This is it for today. My plan is to have another 2-3 chapters before the 3rd year begins! Toodles!