“Why does Heaven communicate to me by the Sons of Light?”
John smiled. “We have always been Heaven’s. We are the redundant network. The backup plan.”
“The backup plan for what?”
“For when the main plan goes awry. I am a messenger because Heaven cannot trust all of its own, these days.”
“You mean the Legate,” Raphael said.
“And his third.”
“Is he right about that? A third of the Host of Heaven follows him?”
“I don’t know. If not a third, in any case there are many.”
“If you are Heaven’s second network,” Raphael asked, “why do you need me at all? Why not carry out the errand yourself?”
As soon as he had formulated the question, he knew what the answer had to be.
The Prester smiled. “You must Bear the Word.”
“A prophet is to be called?”
“A man of vision has stood in the council of the divine ones.”
“Not that council.”
Raphael thought back to the scene of chaos and destruction in the depths of Hell, only a few weeks earlier. He remembered watching the Legate of Heaven and the guitar player Eddie Marlowe running deeper into the caverns together while he was forced back. “Eddie Marlowe,” he said. “You mean me to Bear the Word to Eddie Marlowe.”