Society has collapsed, driven to madness after a great economic crash. Gangs roam the streets, taking any man, woman or child without a Mate for their own.
Martin is on the brink of despair, an asexual man who cannot keep a Mate. Facing a life he cannot bear, he heads to Spire Rock to end it. But when he reaches it, he encounters Anael, an angel sent to assess the world for destruction—and the first to accept Martin exactly as he is.
Teaming up with former gang concubine Sarah, they journey to the Tower of Elysius to end the world. But nothing is ever as simple as it seems, and some angels have plans of their own…
Wings Of Destruction is published by Less Than Three Press.
Wings of Destruction features some descriptions of (past) sexual abuse and rape, as well as mentions and descriptions of self-harm and suicide.
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“This book led me onward, wanting to find out what happened but the last few pages held a bombshell of shock.” – Long And Short Reviews, 4.5 stars.
“Wings of Destruction is an imaginative story, and it went into a couple directions that I hadn’t expected, which was a nice twist. I also very much appreciated how some of the characters weren’t all that they appeared. I don’t want to spoil, but there was some nice surprises.” Boys In Our Books, 3.5 stars.
Anael stood at the highest point of Spire Rock, looking out over the destitute city of Ragnor. Since enduring total economic collapse, the world had shrugged off the chains of civilization and reverted to a life of savagery and poverty. Ragnor, once one of the great cities of the U.S. Northeast, now stood as a shadow of what it once had been. Grey skies dropped heavy rain over the skeletal frames of former skyscrapers. Landmarks stood in ruins, savaged by time and neglect. The rusty relics of former vehicles dotted broken and crumbling streets where nature was attempting to reclaim the urban sprawl from mankind’s abuse.
Anael flexed his brilliant white wings as he took in the ravaged world before him. Archangel Gabriel had sent him on a mission to Earth to decide if it was time to purge the world and start anew. In short, if it was time to unleash the Apocalypse and deliver the humans from their misery, as they had done with the dinosaurs billions of years ago. Back then, a meteor had thrown up dust that turned the skies black and blotted out the sun until all life was gone, but Man would require a more thorough cleansing. Their cities sprawled like a cancer on the world and nothing short of the Black Rain melting the humans and all their cities away would end the stubborn cycle of human life.
Anael had never visited Earth. He had looked down upon the suffering from Heaven with the cold emotional detachment that all angels had, but actually being on the ground was different. The feeling of long grass brushing against his legs and the tickle of ants crawling across his bare feet made him sorry that the world had come to this. He was sure that Gabriel had already made his decision on the fate of the humans, and that whatever Anael said would only be a final confirmation and affirmation of what he had to do. Even angels needed to be validated sometimes. With God slumbering on the Sabbath—one day in Heaven that spanned a thousand years in Earth time—it all fell on their shoulders to make the right choices about the future of this small planet that He had once taken an interest in.
Martin Farrow sat on a battered mattress inside the shell of an old house he had made his own. The rain steadily dripped into a bucket that sat in the corner. Martin listened to the rhythmic sound, his head in his hands. Strands of brown hair hung down too long, in desperate need of a cut. Bloodshot, blue eyes saw the world through his fingers and he closed them, eager to shut out the world. His mate had left. It was another relationship that he thought could work, but was ultimately doomed by who and what he was. Certainly, every man he had been with had claimed he could live without sex, but when it truly came down to it, it was impossible for a sexual being to live without physical relations. It always ended the same way, with recriminations and blame.
Martin ached with a deep exhaustion, the kind that could not be washed away with sleep. It was the fatigue of a man who had tried too hard for too long. He knew he could not go on beating his head against the wall. Martin wanted out of the miserable existence that was his life. He was tired of being asexual in a deeply animalistic and sexual world.
He’d thought about suicide on many occasions. Back in the Old World, folks had driven into the garage and left the engine of their vehicle running until they fell asleep forever, but such a neat and tidy death was not an option in Ragnor. In this new world, death was painful and came with prolonged suffering. There was the torment of thirst and starvation, and the agony of illnesses that lingered without basic medical care. There were murders that went unchecked without a police force to investigate and hate crimes that seemed to be just a way of life. It wouldn’t take much for Martin to goad a gang into violence against him if he wanted to take that route, but his death would be far from painless. Gangs had been known to torture and rape their victims before they killed them. Worse, he could become owned, a slave kept for the purpose of mating with the gang members.
So that left self-harm as a means to an end. Laying out his options, it seemed death by slitting his own wrists or jumping from a tall place were the best two options. Martin wasn’t a big fan of blood or the thought of dying alone in fear, so that left jumping. There were places in the city, tall bridges and broken skyscrapers, but it was Spire Rock that sprang to mind. It had been a popular suicide spot in the Old World as well, a pretty place where one could see a little of nature’s beauty before leaving a cruel world behind.
Martin set out on his final journey before he could let his resolve waver. It was a four-hour walk from his house to Spire Rock, but he moved easily without the encumbrance of belongings. The rain was cool on his skin and it soaked his clothes in a matter of minutes. He no longer had to worry about getting sick. He had made his peace with the hungry roar of his belly and the ache in his joints that marked his getting older. Thirty-five cruel years had passed him by with the urgency of a snail crossing the yard. He wondered if there would be some kind of afterlife, a God to question his actions in life and the manner of his death.
Martin started to traipse up the hill that led to Spire Rock. For a rock, it was the greenest place in Ragnor. Scattered trees overlooked the grassy hillside. Spire Hill might have been a better name, but the reasoning of the Old World was a long time past. Mud and grass covered his feet, causing Martin to reach down and roll up his tattered jeans to the knees. The feeling of mud squelching between his toes was unpleasant, but he comforted himself with the thought that it would all be over soon.
Martin reached the top of Spire Rock and looked out over Ragnor. The view took his breath away, even if Ragnor was ugly and it was raining heavily. In the Old World, the view would have made good art, the nightmarish visions of a tortured soul who saw a dark, dystopian future. They would have been right. Ragnor was as close to Hell as the world could get, as far as Martin was concerned.
Martin made the mistake of looking down from the edge of Spire Rock and vertigo made him take a step back. Tears stung at the back of his eyes as he contemplated the end of his life, the dizzying fall that would dash his brains out on the rocks. It had to be better than life in Ragnor.
Martin stood at the edge for a while, convincing himself that death was for the best. He thought of the darkest moments of his life, the few months twenty-or-so years ago he had spent as a sex slave, raped by filthy men and kept in the darkness. The nightmares of that time still kept him awake to stare at the peeling paint on the ceiling. Death would give him relief from that torment. Quiet oblivion would replace his tortured existence.