The vortex of condemned souls surrounds him. So many, all with tragic stories of their own, forming an impenetrable shroud of spirit and desire. But the ones he truly wishes to be with are somewhere else.
He can scarcely feel his body. But he knows that the spear is here beside him. The same one he used to--
Along its two helices flow inconceivable quantities of biological data. The physical, and the spiritual. He senses his previous form encoded within. But within those coils there is data far older still, and, beholding it, he cannot keep himself from reaching out. This iteration of his soul agitating like an electron within its red globe, he splits the spear in twain, and both halves begin to interweave with the light of his soul, and he begins to solidify into something new.
The egg lay high above the clouds, hidden beneath its dark octagonal veils, casting its myriad eyes upon the earth. At its very center, he starts to live again, and the egg begins to move.
‘I am Lord,’ he thinks, ‘and this is my Chariot.’
The seven colors of the rainbow start to radiate over the shell. Adam’s purest golden essence is inside his soul. Concentrated. In this Life after Life, he is a key to the Gates of the Worlds Beyond.
‘Come to me, my flock,’ he bade the souls that rot in the devastated lands below. ‘Come to me and I shall deliver you. I shall return to you the life that, in my blindness and devastation, I allowed to be stolen. Freed forever of this purgatory, you all shall live again.’
A flaming red crown of wheels-within-wheels propel the pupa of the Angel of Resurrection. The cocoon burgeons as tiny red lights rise up to meet it, all seeming to vanish before they do. The entity at its center feels the unfathomable emptiness within his heart at last acquire a warmth. His spiritual womb fills. To be blessedly burdened with life is as wonderful a feeling as he always knew it would be.
‘Yes,’ he thinks to them. ‘You are inside me now, and with my followers I shall protect you. No matter what it takes, we shall protect you, and we shall help reverse your misfortunes. One day my sins will be undone… One day, this will be a blue planet again. These wheels will take you as far toward that future as they can.”
The Chariot heads northward, seeking the Holy Grail and its mistress. There, where past and future will converge, is where he must go. Destiny awaits them all.
As he moves along his orbital path, weaponry developed by the Lilin — the race he used to belong to — in the years after his death is thrown at him. It is powerful, but against the combined might of him and his angelic choir, all their energy is absorbed and dispersed. Soon he reaches that place, and he can see with his countless eyes that his objective lay far beneath him. A sense of confusion and eeriness grips him, as if his destiny splinters. What he yearns for is not in a single place. And what he perceives as himself — he realizes now that this, too, does not reside in a single place. Was this according to his own designs? He can’t remember. He has become a force of pure will, too thoroughly rewritten to see the past clearly. There is nothing left to do but deliver his divine message and receive his absolution.
Fate itself hangs in the balance. All he can do is go on believing.
And so, without another thought, he begins his heavenly descent. Casting himself down into the embrace of whoever accepts the burden of saving these souls.
Three giants race to meet him. Two of them smell faintly of Lilith. The other doesn’t interest him. Of those two, he finds one markedly more intriguing. A lithe and pale creature, covered in purple, that most regal of colors.
‘I know you,’ he thinks. ‘I know you very well.’
It is mere intuition; no true recall attends it. But he’s certain. She is familiar both inside and out. It is the sort of familiarity that brings… joy? Can he still feel such things? His heart grows heavy, and the myriad souls inside him begin to quicken.
‘You are the one.’
He emerges from his egg and hastens his descent. Just as he hoped, she answers his call. Their egos violently collide, turning the world purple and red. She reaches high for him. One eye opens, then two more, and arms infused with the power of Longinus unfold, elongate… stretch desperately for her. His crimson fingers weave between hers, and their palms press together, and spiritual conduits connect blissfully.
The other two giants are near. He must focus himself and all the others upon this one task. They must complete it. There is no other option. And so, he must hurry.
His grip tightening fiercely, he tells her, ‘Please forgive me.’