As a species, we are pretty rebellious in nature. We idolize it in literature and film, and even in our history it is pervasive in just how much we balk at authority. The Revolutionary War in America. The French Revolution. Even the Bar-Kokhba rebellion in Israel against Rome around a hundred years after the crucifixion. Western bibles don’t have the accounts of the Maccabees (There are four books). These account the Israelite’s victory over the Greeks and the re-dedication of the temple. Some rebellions are well known, others have faded into obscurity. All are instances in history where a group banded together to say to a higher authority, “No.”
Sometimes, it is completely justified. Oppression should be fought against. Injustice should be called out. Some rebellions are innocent, like with children. Ask any parent of a child and they will tell you of instances where their kids rebelled to the detriment of themselves. I have several humorous stories about my own children learning the hard way.
The silence that met the angel was almost reverential. Leon seemed to be the only member of the group who could believe what he saw. A gauntleted hand held a cup of the bitter liquid. As Rohiel drank it, the cup disappeared into the light of his face, then reappeared less full. It seemed that it was up to Leon to respond to Rohiel.
“I have brought them, as instructed,” Leon stated, hoping for some sort of acknowledgement.
“Do not seek the approval of others before the approval of Adonai, Judge.”
“You are forgiven, of course.” The angel began to pace around the table, and the eyes of those who were assembled followed his movements through the empty space.
Leon spread his hands wide as he asked, “How… How is this possible?”
Leon felt an abundance of energy in the early morning hours, long before any of his friends awoke. Thank you Adonai, he thought, because he knew he would need it shortly. He remembered his vision, and the instructions Rohiel had given him. There was a lot that he was supposed to accomplish in a short amount of time.
As he held the old spear, its blade shone with a pale brilliant light in the darkness of the small bedroom. Leon knew it was not yet sunrise, and with little time to waste he moved with a purpose. He donned his well-crafted scale and plate armor that the dwarven smith had made, which served to mark his new identity: a Judge, a hero who hid the flawed man inside.
Leon stared at the helm in his hands. It was the last piece of the suit, and perhaps the most important. He couldn’t take any chances; if he stepped outside the room without it, he may be recognized. The multitude of wanted posters accused Leon of theft, impersonating a noble, and crimes against the crown. All of which, upon reflection, he had to admit were true.
Leon awoke in a cold sweat. His naval uniform was plastered to his clammy skin. The heirloom Levigem necklace he wore was twisted awkwardly around, and painfully poked into his aching chest. Adjusting it, he tucked the gem back into his shirt and slowly sat up on the rough cot he found himself on. Everything hurt. Of course, that could have been from walking for two days without food or water.
As he looked around, Leon discovered that he was in a dimly lit cell of all places. Small, cramped, and damp, the air smelled of mold and rotting hay. A skin of water lay next to him and, feeling his parched throat, he grabbed for it and began to gulp its contents down with sheer desperation.
“Not too fast lad, or it’ll just come back up an’ out,” a rough, weary voice sounded from outside the cell.