The sisters watched Constantine disappear in silence.
"The price you set was too high."
"So what. I hate him."
She received no reply.
A flash of soundless light found Constantine five hundred yards from the summit of Mt. Chimborazo. The point closest to God.
Constantine brushed the thought aside, filling his lungs with mountain air as he focused on his current situation; a thick miasma of insects- fat shiny flying- surrounded his goal. Its discordant humming grew in intensity and its somewhat sluggish swarming became an agitated frenzy in response to his presence.
He had a scarcity of weapons. There were thousands of them. John reached into his coat pocket and took out a stick of gum, chewing as he took stock. There was no time- he had to get to Angela. Now.
"The six month deadline from Old Fuss Face's rise ends in one hour." Uriel appeared almost pleased as she taunted him. "You really think cheap tricks will win the day?"
"Better watch that, Uri. God don't like ugly." The air in the room snapped and sizzled as Constantine continued, "I'll need fast transport. The fastest."
Uriel's features smoothed over. Spreading her wings, she reached behind and, with a shrill shriek that shook the walls, yanked, handing him a small grey feather.
"There is a cost."
"Fuck I care." There was a small crack! and he was gone in a silent swirl of wind and light.
Without further thought, Constantine extracted a decanter from his trench coat. He tipped it, dousing his entire body, and ran into the cloud. The creatures screeched as they came in contact with the holy water but the mindless horde attacked relentlessly. He felt multiple stinging sensations as cuts appeared along his cheeks, arms and legs. He bore his way through, kicking and punching, until suddenly he found a small opening in the writhing wall.
At the center of this cleansed hollow lay the pendant, unobtrusive and small. His fingers gripped the dull gold band and immediately the swarm pulled back. He ran on, crashing into the clearing just in time to see Gabriel land a hard right to the side of Angela's head. Gabriel looked up and smiled.
"You're just in time," the ex-angel exclaimed pleasantly as he loosened his grip. Angela's body fell heavily to the hard ground.
John stared fixedly at his opponent. "Gabriel. You're looking well. Losing divine privilege must not have been too bad."
Instantly Gabriel's polite veneer disintegrated. Though all traces of filth had been removed, the ex-angel was rail thin and wild-eyed. He practically reeked of hard-living. "Do you have any idea what I've been through these past months?" he hissed.
"Why, Gabriel," Constantine replied with exaggerated sympathy, reaching into another pocket and withdrawing his Crossgun, "humanity not the bed of roses you thought it'd be?"
"I was institutionalized! Me!" Gabriel was raving, his agitation palpable. "The authorities came to that travesty of an asylum," he spat, "and took words of salvation and enlightenment for the gibbering prattle of a madman!" Spittle appeared at the corner of his mouth.
"Maybe they couldn't take the bullshit." Constantine calmly raised the weapon, sighting his target steadily. But Gabriel had seemingly lost interest in John's doings. An eerie calm had replaced the craze and he wiped at his chin. Constantine tensed as the fair-headed man turned to Angela.
"But now... that's all going to disappear."
"For a human to leave hell then to obtain heaven is beyond rare. This process is called Ascension. When a psychic Ascends and a psychic of equal measure does the same but in reverse, concentrated balance is formed. The process is not as simple as this suggests. Reverse Reciprocation is an extremely delicate process. But psychic twins-." Phanuel stared John grimly in the eye.
"Twin psychics are equal in all ways."
"No!" he whispered desperately. But even as he fired, the other man spoke words that twisted and rumbled on the air. The air surrounding Gabriel and Angela condensed, slowing the small piece of lead to a slug's pace. The shot never landed. Constantine watched the bullet with an intense expression, willing it to work.
A small silver dart came out of the bullet's tip, slicing through the solidifying air to find its mark. A small red dot appeared on Gabriel's chest and spread rapidly. Even as blood dribbled from his lips, the ex-angel smiled.
"You're too late. My wish will be granted. It has begun."
Constantine didn't need the words; he could feel it. Angela was gone.
A/N: This relatively fast update is dedicated to LeochickX as an apology because I said I'd post and didn't. I've added a small humorous bit to chapter five as a thank you to claire3loves3music for reviewing as many times as she did. Semjaza, I've got something in the works for you as well. Thanks for telling me your thoughts every chapter.
One more update to go! I hope everyone enjoys the ending. Thanks for sticking with me, all you lovely, lovely readers.