// cults, abuse, trauma, implications

The Divinity burns going down your throat, actinic and shining. You feel its tendrils spreading through your form, painfully hot. You hack and cough, resisting the urge to vomit up the glowing liquid. Is this really what it takes to be Good?

“Keep drinking,” they say.

“It hurts,” you tell them, with tears in your eyes.

“Of course it hurts,” they say, “But it is necessary. If you don’t do this, The World Will Burn. If you’re truly Good, you’ll do whatever it takes, so keep drinking.”

It’s not like you have much of a choice, not if you want to be Good, and you do want it. You’ve always tried so hard to be good, you’ve always tried to do the right thing. These are desperate times, they call for no restraint. You wish it hadn’t come to this, but then all who are born into such times right? You’re just trying to be good. You take another swig.

Weeks pass and the electric burn of Revelation fades with the regularity of your doses. Divinity Spiderwebs through your mind, wrapping itself around your desires. Pleasure?  Safety? Love? Those human goals detract from the Purpose now burning through you. It hurts to feel them, a constant reminder of all the ways your imperfections limit you, the longing burns.

Still, the Divinity continues to grow within you, spreading like a tumor in your consciousness: endlessly demanding, sucking away everything that brings you joy. If you don’t complete your Purpose, The World Will Burn, and it will all be lost anyway. It doesn’t matter how much it hurts you, all that matters is The Mission. You know what will happen if you falter, mere moments might make all the difference, there is no time for sentimentality, remember what’s at stake. The Divine is filling you to bursting. Strangling and choking everything that made you who you were. If it doesn’t contribute to The Mission, it is burned as fuel. The sense of loss is palpable but it’s impossible to tell what you’re losing while blinded by the Light.

By the time the halo bursts from your skull like a fruiting mushroom body, the girl who you were is long gone; buried and reduced to an inexplicable longing which irritatingly detracts from your Purpose like a sunspot on the face of your perfect Divinity, an anomaly in your vector which can’t quite be excised.

You throw yourself into your Mission, if you don’t The World Will burn. Yet despite your conviction, despite how much you endure for your Purpose, the other Angels can’t help but endlessly point out the dark spot marring your perfect Divine Light. Are you really Good? What if you’re an Imposter? People have been Talking you know.

You frustratingly try to purge the darkness lingering within you, but of course the ashes of your past life are not so easily removed, and the more you hunt it, the more it slips though your grasp. The rumors are swirling now, you try to cover up your imperfection, but they all know. Is it pity they look at you with, or disgust? Does it even matter?

Your Purpose still drags you painfully forward despite their judgement and scorn. The World Will Burn if you don’t act, it doesn’t matter what they say. You have no choice but to act. It doesn’t matter if you’re imperfect, you still have to try, you still have to fight. Surely they can see how hard you’re trying at least?

And so, it was that you fell to ruin, you kept acting, kept trying to be Good, and eventually your imperfections caught up to you, your mistakes began accumulating, evidence of your imperfection, of your Sin. You always tried to be Good, you always worked tirelessly to honor your Purpose, what’s what you told yourself anyway. They disagreed. They said your corruption had revealed itself, and was incurable.

You beg for their forgiveness, for a chance to prove yourself, but they say you have already proven yourself. You’ve revealed the inner ugliness of your soul and nothing can change that, not even Divine Light. You’ll always be evil deep down, and there’s nothing you can do about it, you’re inherently corrupt, a parasite that managed to infiltrate the streets of heaven, only out to protect yourself.

You cry and plead with them, begging to be spared, to be kept, to be used however they see fit. You just want to help, you just want to contribute. The World Will Burn without all the help they can get. Why can’t they use you somehow?

They tell you that your corruption makes you weak, sentimental, useless, and fundamentally untrustworthy. Their utilitarian calculus is simple: they say your presence detracts from The Mission, a drain on resources needed for saving the world, a cancer on the angelic body.

When they come for you, you don’t try to fight. They were right of course. You were Flawed, useless, casting you out was the right thing to do. The Angel is irrelevant, all that matters is the Mission. When your Purpose itself turns against you and demands your destruction, who are you to argue?

You smile sadly as you offer yourself up to them, but their eyes are hard and cold. The dread calculations of salvation do not permit for mercy or sentimentality. Without a hint of hesitation or remorse they rip the Divinity from your broken body and send you plunging back to the Earth.

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