A Triad of Angels
Pete sighed, suddenly tired, How had it all gone wrong? He wondered. He’d just been dropping Mac off from another successful mission for the Phoenix Foundation and had walked him to the front door of his apartment when suddenly Murdoc had glided out from the shadows. He hadn’t even bothered with his usual repartee this time, he’d merely raised his automatic and fired.
Pete shuddered, Murdoc would have shot him in the head, but Mac had pushed him out of the way and the bullet had merely grazed his shoulder. Then when Mac was on the ground, Murdoc had calmly walked across to him and emptied the remainder of his clip into his adversary’s body. Then he’d turned and walked away – or tried to, but two police cars and an ambulance were suddenly on the scene and two burly policemen had appeared as if from nowhere and a screaming Murdoc had been handcuffed and bundled into a patrol car so fast that Pete’s head spun.
Despite the pain in his shoulder, Pete managed to crawl across to his friend, ignoring the blood staining his hands and his shirt, he’d cradled his best friend in his arms, tears of grief pouring down his face. The paramedics had had to pry his hands from Mac’s body. By the time the ambulance reached the hospital, Pete was numb – Mac had been whisked away to the operating theatre and Mac had sat, blood stil staining his hands and clothes in the waiting room, waiting for news. Someone led him unresisting to another treatment room where his jacket and shirt were tenderly removed and his shoulder dressed.
“He saved my life,” Pete mumbled, “and then Murdoc shot him-”
He never recalled any of the nurses or physicians clearly. Eventually one of them crouched down so that their eyes were level and said gently, “Mr Thornton, I think you should get some rest. I’m going to give you something to help you sleep-”
To her shock his good hand came up and clamped itself around her wrist, “I need to find out what’s happened to my friend!” he hissed.
“All right, all right,” the nurse soothed, “I’ll go and find out, what’s his name?”
“Mac – MacGyver-“ Pete croaked. The nurse nodded and then he was alone. Somehow, he never afterwards remembered how, he got to his feet and stumbled to the waiting area, which is where the nurse and green clad surgeon found him fifteen minutes later.
He stood up shakily and the nurse gently urged him down again, “Easy, Mr Thornton. Sit down.”
The surgeon sighed and sat down opposite them both, removing his cap he swallowed and said, “Mr Thornton, I’m very sorry, but the damage is too extensive. I’m afraid that he’s dying.”
“Oh no,” Pete breathed, feeling as though the earth had been cut out from beneath him. “May I see him?” he begged.
“Has he any family?” the man demanded.
“A son,” Pete replied, “but he’s in Africa on a Phoenix Foundation dig.”
The surgeon’s lips tightened, “I doubt he’ll be able to get here in time – very well, you may see your friend for a short while. You must also get some rest.”
Pete’s eyes flashed and for a moment he seemed almost like his old self, “I’m his family,” he growled and half-fancied that he saw the surgeon blench.
When he entered the room he was shocked, Mac lay white and silent in the hospital bed and Pete stared dumbstruck at the silent figure. Gently he took his friend’s hand, “Thank you, Mac,” he said quietly, “I’ll never forget you – I’ll take care of your son for you, you don’t need to worry about him. You can rest easy, I’ll – we’ll always remember you. I promise.”
He swallowed hard, fighting to hold back the tears. Eventually, he laid the limp hand back down on the sheet and overwhelmed by the emotions running through him, went to sit in the corridor. I’ll just gather my thoughts, he said quietly to himself, and then I’ll call Sam. He was still sitting in the hall trying to get his emotions under control when he realised that someone was sitting next to him.
Painfully he turned his head to see a young woman, at least later when he had a chance to think about it, that was the overwhelming impression because afterwards all he could remember clearly was a strong, handsome face, eyes as blue as lapis lazuli and hair as black as a raven’s wing.
A cool hand was resting on his arm and he heard a voice that seemed to bypass his ears entirely, Peace. There is nothing to fear. And Thornton, disbelieving, felt his despair and hopelessness ease. I am Haniel, come from my guardianship of the Tree of Life to ease your pain, Peter Thornton.
He swallowed and looked up into those magnificent blue eyes and could not speak. Eventually he nodded, “Thank you. If you will excuse me, I need to make a telephone call about my friend-”
“Do not fear,” the Being said quietly, “I see that you too are hurt.”
“My friend is dying because of me.”
“We know,” it said, “have faith, Peter Thornton – and all will be well.”
Peter managed a faint smile, “I have no fear for him. But Sam and I will miss his companionship.”
Haniel smiled, or at least Peter thought later that they might have smiled, then it laid a slim, long-fingered hand against the bandage on his shoulder and he gasped as a wave of fire lanced through him, leaving him shaking.
“I think you will find that will be sufficient,” it said, supporting him easily until his head stopped spinning. “Now, we shall go to your friend.”
Peter swallowed, “You are going to heal Mac?” he asked tentatively, hating the pleading note in his voice.
“We come on the bidding of The Compassionate, He who is Merciful,” the Being replied.
“Then I can go and make my telephone calls,” Thornton replied firmly, “if you but say the Word, Mac will be healed. I know this because I too am a man in charge of others, I say to them, ‘Come here’ and they come; ‘Do this’ and it is done. If you say he will be healed it will be so.”
“Such faith,” a new voice murmured, and Thornton looked up and felt his mouth go dry, a tall, blond shining figure was standing next to him, “I am both awed and humbled by my Master’s creation. But come, he will need you. I come on the bidding of the Most High and Raphael is my name.”
How Pete made it back into the room he never knew, but suddenly he was sitting in the chair next to the hospital bed, his hand resting on his friend’s arm. Another of these shining creatures was holding Mac’s left hand and Haniel was standing next to him, clasping Mac’s right in one of her own. Raphael moved to stand at the head of the bed, and then looked up to see Pete staring at him, a soft smile touched his lips, he shone like a miniature sun and Thornton realised that these angels – and they could be nothing else – were completely in control, and then it spoke, “I am Raphael and it is my honour and privilege to stand before the Lord High God and serve Him. Normally, only one Angel is required for a Healing, but sometimes, circumstance necessitates the intervention of more than one, we journeyed from the Heights of Heaven for this man. Let us begin.”
And Pete could only stare, awed into silence as three pairs of pearly, iridescent wings unfolded and seemed to surround him and Mac and fill the entire room. Raphael gently took Mac’s head in his hands and Pete vaguely remembered staring at the long, elegant fingers as silver light poured down his friend’s supine body. Peter swallowed hard, and stared up speechless at the face of this scintillating creature, unable to speak.
MacGyver surfaced slowly, he was aware that he was lying on a soft mattress, ‘How did he get here?’ he thought hazily, he could also sense people around him. He forced open heavy eyelids and gazed up into a face of such strength and handsomeness that for a moment, he couldn’t speak. Swallowing, he managed to make eye contact and said, “I’m not afraid.”
A gentle, yet powerful voice replied, “That is good, but there is nothing to be afraid of, Angus. All is well.”
“You know my name,” he murmured, normally he’d have been irritated that someone called him by his Christian name but this feeling of well-being filled him like champagne and all he could down was close his eyes and relax back into its embrace. A sudden flicker of fear curled in his gut, and he tried to struggle up.
“Pete!” he muttered, forcing his eyes open and attempting to sit up.
“Easy there, Mac,” Pete’s hand was warm on his arm and reassured, Mac relaxed, feeling the hands cradling his head, blinking up at the shining figure he managed a crooked smile, “Sorry,” he muttered, “sorry-”
“Hush,” Peter noticed that it was the angel who had healed him who spoke, she was standing behind Thornton, her hand clasping Mac’s, “there is nothing to apologise for. You are safe and among friends – sleep now.”
Mac managed a half-smile and then closing his eyes, drifted into slumber. The tallest of the three Beings, the one standing at Mac’s head looked up and Pete was sure it spoke although the words seemed to arrive in his brain without bypassing his ears, He will sleep now – perhaps a day, maybe two, but he will recover.
Pete nodded, unable to find any words. Haniel laid a hand on his shoulder, “You need rest,” she said softly, “come. Sleep now.”
Pete felt her hands lifting him from the chair and then he was being eased onto a second bed. “All will be well.”
Raphael regarded the now sleeping man, “Such courage; they blaze brighter than suns. Haniel, if you wish you may stay for a short while – but forget not that you too have duties.”
She bowed, “My thanks. And I will not forget.”
They nodded and then Haniel was alone. Seating herself next to the bed, she gently took Mac’s hand.
She was still sitting beside the bed when the door opened and a young, dark haired doctor strode into the room. “Who are you?” she demanded, “you’re not on his visitors list – you’ll have to leave-”
“No,” the woman turned and Dr Bryan had to swallow as a pair of blue eyes of such intensity bored into her and she was rendered momentarily speechless..
“I have to examine him,” the Doctor began, “it might be distressing – this man is dying, he needs peace and quiet-“
“He needs to know that he’s safe and his friends are around him,” the woman corrected, “You may drug his body into insensibility but his spirit will continue to fight.”
“I think you know, Doctor.” The woman responded. “Examine your patient.”
Her mouth tensing in a thin line, Dr Bryan stalked across to the bed. She gently pulled the sheet down and slipping the ends of the stethoscope into her ears she gently pressed the disk against MacGyver’s neck and chest, “Well his pulse seems to have steadied.” She said, looping the instrument around her neck, “and his blood pressure’s stabilized.” She paused, “however, I just want a quick look at his injuries-”
Haniel looked away, trying to suppress a grin. She ran a thumb over the back of Mac’s hand and watched as the doctor carefully peeled back the dressing on the man’s shoulder and the angel heard the indrawn gasp, Haniel looked up, “Is something wrong?”
“No – yes – I don’t know,” Dr Bryan stuttered, “excuse me, I’m going to fetch a nurse.”
She returned within ten minutes, looking, if possible, even more flustered.
“I would suggest that you-” the nurse began but Dr Bryan shook her head, “don’t bother. I’ve tried. She won’t move.”
Haniel moved away from her chair at the side of the bed and moved to stand at the end of the second one. Peter was still asleep, and Haniel bent over him, he murmured in his sleep and Haniel gently laid a hand on his own, waiting until he settled again.
“I don’t believe this,” the Doctor was speaking again, “he’s completely healed! There are no injuries-” she stopped and then swallowing said, “I don’t know how to classify this.”
For a moment, Haniel regarded her sympathetically and then said, “I’m just a friend of Mr Thornton’s” she replied, “Peter needed to sleep so I volunteered to stay and give him some respite.”
Dr Bryan managed a shaky smile, “But this is fantastic! How?”
“I think you would say that this is not a matter of science, but a matter of faith” Haniel replied.
Dr Bryan nodded slowly, stunned into silence. Carefully she examined the sleeping man and then straightened up, “Well, his pupils are responsive – he appears to just be sleeping now – I think the best thing would be to let him rest, we’ll see how he is in the morning.” She paused to look at the Being, “you will stay?”
“At least until Mr Thornton wakes up,” Haniel replied.
Dr Bryan nodded and then they were alone. Mac continued to sleep, Dr Bryan had removed the dressing on his shoulder and replaced the oxygen mask with a canula. The angel reseated herself next to the bed and gently took Mac’s hand, “Rest easy, young man,” she smiled.
When Pete awoke three hours later, Haniel was still sitting beside the bed, “How is he?” he whispered.
Haniel stood up,”He’ll be all right now, Mr Thornton. How do you feel?”
“I’ll be fine,” Peter smiled back.
“And your shoulder?” Haniel asked, “you should be able to remove the dressing when you get home.”
“I don’t know how to thank you,” Pete replied, “what to say-”
“There is no need,” the Angel stood up and laid a soft hand against Thornton’s face, “I must go now too. You will look after him?”
“As best I can,” Peter replied, “he has a propensity for getting himself into trouble.”
“We know,” Haniel smiled. “He has a very special guardian angel. Now, Peter Thornton, look after yourself.”
Peter nodded and then he ws alone in the quiet room. Quietly he sat down in the chair and took the man’s hand, “If I hadn’t seen it with my own eyes,” he murmured softly to his sleeping friend. “I would not have believed it.”