“I have always been a loyal servant,” argued Malakai, highest of the angelic host. “Their adoration of me is merely a pale reflection of the worship they offer up to you.” He paced the room, folding his wings behind him. Asyra sat in the golden throne above and peered down at the angel. It was true: he had always been loyal. He had cut down swathes of heretics with a sword of blinding light many times over the years. But this time it was different.
“I love all my children,” Asyra spoke. “And I love you most of all, Malakai.” She stood from the throne and walked down the lighted steps to Malakai as he bowed. He held his hand up to shield his face from the blinding aura of light that surrounded her.
“However,” she said. “Your story, though it is true, tells a lie.”
“Divine Mother, I merely—“ Asyra held up a hand to silence him.
“I am, above all things, a healer,” she said. “And your followers, above all, are warriors.”
She touched his head softly, but the weight and heat of her light made him sweat. He couldn’t think straight this close to her, to the throne. He knew why they worshipped her: even her mere presence was more power than he had ever held in his entire life.
“The more they love you,” she continued, “The more they will follow your passion and fury, and the less they will follow my ways of peace and life.”
“I have cast out many demons, destroyed many heretics,” he replied.
“And for that, I will always love you, dear child,” she turned from him now and headed up the steps to throne. He breathed deep, finally regained his composure, and stood.
“But your way lies the way of war,” she said and sat. “My way is the way of peace.”
Malakai turned from the throne and spread his wings.
“You’ve been away from Etheria too long,” he said. “Your way doesn’t work.”