The Chamber seemed hollow and empty without the usual chatter of Guardians. There always seemed to be at least one newbie hopping up and down with excitement as their teacher activated the portal, ripples spreading across the surface of the sapphire liquid.
The portal in the center of the stone floor was now still, the water unmoving in the light of the silver moon. I walked towards it cautiously, my bare feet making no noise upon the flagstones.
Evangeline ran ahead of me, falling to her knees beside the pool. I shuddered involuntarily as I caught sight of the bloody stumps protruding from her shoulder blades. It was all that was left of her wings.
"It's so strange to see the portal like this," She murmured, reaching out a hand experimentally to touch the water.
I moved to stop her, my mouth opening to utter a cry, but her slender finger touched the surface of the liquid, tiny ripples spreading across the surface.
A rough image of the planet Earth appeared for a fraction of a second before fading away into darkness.
Evangeline clasped a hand to her mouth in shock, "I thought only the teachers could do that!"
I knelt next to her, "Apparently the teachers tell lies," I murmured, reaching out as she had done.
I slapped my hand on the water roughly, large ripples causing the water to splash over the sides. Concentrating, I tried to make the image change, to show me where I wanted to go.
The Earth fell into focus once more, becoming closer and larger, filling the surface of the round pool. It spun slowly, displaying the mountains and grass, the city lights gleaming on the dark side of the planet.
"There!" I whispered loudly, pointing to the country known as America.
It expanded, displaying the city in which Cain Davis lived. It was San Francisco in all its glory. The defining red bridge stood out like a sore thumb amongst the grey and silver buildings.
I turned to Evangeline, "I must go in full form,"
Her eyes grew wide, glittering like gold in the dim light, "No! It could kill you!"
I shrugged off this bitter fact, staring into the portal with determination, "I am already dead to the world,"
Evangeline rested a hand on my shoulder, "Not this world,"
Looking back at her for the last time, I smiled gently. I would miss my friend greatly. "I will return. You can count on it. Wait for me?"
She nodded, biting her lip. It showed her dedication - the wingless that remained in the Chamber, either talking to old friends or loitering, were often harassed and belittled.
We embraced, my wings wrapping around her frail form, "You will always be my best friend, Evangeline," I murmured, breaking away from her.
Her gaze drifted to my wings which were spread out behind me, "And you will be mine," Amber eyes flicked to my own, "Iris,"
I had to leave. If I did not, I would have second thoughts and never step into the portal.
Turning around, I dipped my foot into the water. It grabbed my leg, pulling me under. The water closed around my head, the familiar comforting feeling that I was almost drowning caused my heart to flutter anxiously in my chest.
Night became day and the angel became mortal.