Author's note: Firstly, I would like to express my thanks to the lovely fellow authors and readers who welcomed my previous two works intended for the Supernatural section.
" I won't give up on you."
The quietude and serenity of that specific, supernal region was such that even an angel could comparatively easy misestimate the movement of time flowing incessantly.
Variations of blue and violet of a sky most distant from the one closer to the world of humans, had encircled the beautifully shining presence positioned alone in an immense valley, a place tinged in a composition of shadows -not dreadful, but the kind that provide shelter for deep contemplation- and thin beams of golden light, like rays of sun seeking to pierce through dense clouds.
It was the place where Castiel felt more comfortable to meditate, unswayed by outer distractions, or to immerse himself into the process of summoning an angel from a superior rank; And this was precisely what he was attempting that instant.
His appeal was filled with perseverance and selfless expectation, hoping that a member of the Order of Principalities would soon receive him. On the other hand, he was aware that the angels consisting this family were particularly busy and focused on their tasks and wouldn't interrupt their work immediately, unless they considered the petition as urgent.
But what mattered to him mostly was that he had no intention to quit effort or deny his devout, honest wish...
The angel was kneeling on one knee, keeping his hands close to the chest. His eyes were closed as he intently pronounced verses of a psalm especially for the invocation...
The notion of disappointment did not take over Castiel because strong faith invigorated his action. And he was suddenly so wrapped into the reason that originally led him to this, that his mind became momentarily overwhelmed by the impression that the person for whom he began this effort, was somewhere near, around him, close to him.
Incited by the effect, he opened his eyes as if sure that he would actually see her...
Instead of Anna, the heavenly soldier witnessed the magnificent, silver-winged presence of a Principality standing in front of him. Castiel experienced a primal contentment at the sight of this arrival.
" I really thank you for coming here." He said after he stood upright and while he observed the other angel more carefully, he appeared to recognise his exact identity. " You must be Hanael. If I am not wrong, you are the one who looked after Anna's rebirth into human form and also responsible for sheltering her grace."
" True. My Order thought that you have called us for a matter concerning Anna, the fallen, so they sent me." There was no sign of contempt, resentment or anger in the tone of the angel's voice or expression; He was in repose and not in the slightest accusive when he referred to Anna.
Castiel was grateful for that, but he also knew this behaviour didn't necessarily mean that the Principality continued to have a positive opinion about the former warrior.
" So, my brother, what can I do for you?"
The angel turned his head sidewards, lowering his eyes in brief contemplation. He wanted so much to be sure that he would compose his words properly, expressing himself the best way he could... He really had to engage the attention of the figure who might had the power to make a difference.
" Anna was born in the world of humans - as a human - without a guardian angel to watch over her during her life. Before anything else, I would like to learn if this is fair." Castiel calmly spoke.
The Principality appeared to consider the statement carefully. " We didn't determine a guardian for the fallen, because her case is not similar to that of a newborn soul. Anna has a history in this region and it was her choice to abandon her nature and receive the humane one; This means she has consciously rejected the traits and destiny of her original existence... It is unlikely that she will ever accept or want our spiritual companionship."
Castiel had doubts about that; Anyone could turn to the light, at any time. However he didn't convey his opinion openly as he assumed it wouldn't help right now. He tried an alternative route into the discussion. " Are you hinting that she might be sensitive to the exposure of impressions that could remind her of this life here?"
" No, not within the earthly environment. On the other hand, her memories were repressed, but not erased. So, frequent proximity to a heavenly presence might have the potential to awaken sensations or faint images, but then again, that is not certain." The superior angel observed. He turned his shiny form away a little, looking thoughtful, " I was assigned to oversee Anna's transition... I decided that she had to be given internal defences, but considering her action, the options were very few. The suppression of memories was obligate. So apart from this, I blessed her with a natural aptitude in art, as a means to refine her spirit. It was something she appreciated as an angel too."
Castiel nodded; Anna used to tell him about paintings, how humans depicted the different families of angels through their art, how they visualised them. Although he did not share the same passion for the subject, he missed these moments somehow. He missed having this angel beside him.
" You did something beautiful, Hanael. But this alone doesn't secure her from the forays of demons. She's vulnerable."
" Yes. Demons are drawn to the fallen, tormenting them in several ways. And that's how they eventually manage to take the remnant, flickering light of the misguided."
The listener frowned and a shadow tinted his bright eyes. The Principality examined him silently for a minute, " You appear to have something in your mind. What is it?"
In response, the angel raised his gaze and finally spoke with serene, steady resolve.
" I humbly ask to become Anna's guardian."
The other angel was utterly surprised but he continued listening as Castiel added, " I am aware that we are not to choose whom we are to look after... Yet, I need to know if there is a possibility for the fulfilment of my request under these circumstances; It is you, after all, who said that Anna is a particular case."
Hanael discerned an earnest keenness that impressed him to some degree but, for the most part, he remained cautious about it. " You are motivated by loyalty and closeness developed with your former leader. But I ought to remind you that those who desert Heaven experience an innate refusal of receiving support from there. It's their natural tendency. How do you expect to reverse that, Castiel?"
" I don't plan to change Anna or reverse anything." The soldier tranquilly explained. " I only wish is to be by her side, without force or pressure, like an angel does to a human. To offer."
The superior did not detect any suspicious sign or a slight proof of ulterior motives behind the expressed words. Castiel was driven by purely unconditional willingness, though some could easily call this initiative foolish, scandalous.
" Brother, your petition is selfless, but very serious. I am not allowed to make such a decision on my own. A council should be convened among the members of my Order and we might need to turn to our superiors for advice and permission. I shall do what I can to persuade them to consider the matter soon."
" I appreciate that." The spiritual soldier replied. It was known to him that he couldn't be present in that council since he belonged to the lowest ranks of the hierarchy. He smiled. " Hanael, if they ask about my intentions, why I am doing this, please tell to them; She never owed me anything. In every way this can be conceived."
The Principality's expression softened. " I will mention it. Your effort is admittedly generous, yet very risky. Before I take my leave, I must ask you: Have you ever thought if your distress caused by Anna's absence is surely stronger than the challenge of having to watch over as she proceeds into her life freely? Have you attentively considered that this open-hearted willingness may not guarantee a happy conclusion in the remote future?"
" I assure you, the answer to both, is yes."
Notes: According to the the angelic hierarchy based on the Christian teachings, Principalities belong to the first heavenly sphere along with guardian angels and Archangels, but on a higher level than them. They are described as the angels of mercy (which also means that they support those who promote merciful acts) and peace. They are also said to infuse a leaning toward a specific type of knowledge into the unborn soul.
The name I chose for the inserted Principality means "Grace of God". Castiel's mention in the text about Hanael sheltering Anna's grace, suggests that Uriel is currently not the possessor of it.