They didn’t know they were being watched as they floated above the community of Bear River. They idly let the wind carry them as they observed the inhabitants below. Their duty had been a quiet and peaceful one for the most part. They didn’t worry about the Evil One, he usually only sent his demons to the larger more populated cities, where they could cause the most chaos. But Bear River was a small town; with a population of only around 10,000. Though small it had a very diverse populace. The people had a good ole town folk mentality too; everyone knows everyone and they’re always willing to lend a helping hand.
Hate and Fear arrived in Bear River early that morning; they made sure to stay out of sight. They didn’t want Hope and Love to know that they were there until it was too late for them to stop their plans. They snickered as their secret weapon drove into town.
Daryl was agitated, he wasn’t happy about being assigned out here in the sticks. His chief had called him into the office last week and told him, that he could take reassignment or be fired from the force. He’d had three write ups for use of excessive force and his chief had blown a gasket. If his brother-in-law hadn’t stepped in for him, he’d have been fired. So what if he’d broke that punks jaw, the kid deserved it. They were just trash, it was his job to clean up the streets, but when he did looked what happened, transferred to Boonyville. He decided to play nice, he wanted to get away from this town as soon as possible and if he got more write ups that wouldn’t happen, so with a fake smile on his face he parked his car.
“Here goes nothing.” He sarcastically said to himself.
“Who is that, pulling up in front of the police station?” Hope wondered.
“I don’t know, but I can feel the anger and spite, rolling off of him.” Love replied as she watched with concern as he entered the sheriff’s office.
“We had better keep an eye on him; we also need to be on the look out for any of the Evil Ones parasites.”
“I’m sorry, subordinates? You know they are here somewhere when you have a human with that much hate boiling inside.” Hope sighed so much for peace and quiet.
Hate and Fear tagged along with Daryl his first weeks on the job, they were careful to not be seen by the angels, but still close enough to Daryl to keep him agitated and volatile. He kept his emotions under wraps the 4 weeks of the probation. It wasn’t that hard, the town was so laid back and quiet he had trouble staying awake, but on the 5th week things changed;
“Sean, Stu is drunk again he’s passed out at the tavern. Take Daryl with you, show him the ropes” Sheriff Ford told them, the Sheriff was a jolly fellow; quick to laugh. Many people were deceived by his calm quiet personality, but they soon saw the steal beneath his exterior in times of trouble. Sean nodded and he and Daryl left the station and headed to the Hickory Tavern. It was the only bar in town.
“So, sounds like this Stu gets drunk a lot.” Daryl inquired.
“Not a lot, but it happens, He starts missing his wife, she died last year, and he ties one on, we generally just…….Hey” Sean never got to finish his sentence because as they pulled up to the bar, Stu stumbled out of the tavern and Daryl jumped out of the vehicle. Daryl pulled his gun, ordering Stu down to the ground; Stu drunkenly stared in confusion at the gun. Daryl reacted swiftly to the non compliance, he elbowed Stu in the face, Stu fell to the ground and Daryl kicked him unto his stomach, put his knee onto his back, wretched his arms behind him and handcuffed him. All before Sean even made it out of his vehicle.
“What in the Hell do you think your doing!” Sean yelled at Daryl as he picked up Stu and undid the cuffs. “We only came here to take him home! He’s harmless and a good guy. Damn is that how you do it in the city? If so you’ve got a lot to learn about how we work around here.”
Daryl silently sat in the vehicle as Sean examined Stu’s face and he cleaned him up. They then drove him home and Sean helped him into the house. All the while Daryl fumed. Hate and Fear floated around his head,
“It’s pathetic, now you’re a nursemaid and a taxi service for reprobates!” Hate whispered in his ear.
“What’s next? A councilor for drug addicts or a therapist for abusers. Or they’ll take away your weapon and give you a taser? You’ll be defenseless against the rabble.” Fear nagged.
Sean got back into the car and looked at Daryl's stormy face.
“Hey, I know things are different where you come from, but we are very laid back here. There is hardly any crime to speak of and most of these folks are friends. So you need to get with the program or go back the big city.”
At the mention of going back, Daryl inwardly flinched. He knew he couldn’t go back. Hope floated up too Daryl,
“Give this place a chance, you could be happy here.” Hate flew thru the window and attacked Hope; they tumbled out of the vehicle and landed on the ground. Hates red eyes burned fiercely as he ripped at her wings, Fear was about to join in when he saw Love descending from above wielding her sword. He fled immediately,
“Release her!” Love roared. Hate released Hope and lunged at Love, she met him with her sword cutting a fiery path across his chest.
Clutching the wound he disappeared in a black fiery cloud.
“Are you okay, Hope?”
“Yes, I knew they were there, but for just a moment I thought that the human would be receptive to my suggestion.”
“We’ll watch and see if he will, but I think we are going to have a battle on our hands, Hate would never have attacked you unless he had something big planned.
Sean and Daryl discussed the incident on the way back to the station.
For a moment Daryl considered changing his ways. He apologized for what happened, he even offered to go back and apologize to Stu.
“Don’t worry about that, Stu probably won’t remember, he’ll think he just fell off the bar stool...” Sean chuckled.
“So we’re cool then? You won’t say anything to the sheriff?” Daryl asked.
Sean thought about it for a while, He didn’t like keeping anything from Ford, but Daryl was new here, he’d apologized and Sean didn’t want to put this one mistake on his permanent record.
“No, I won’t say anything” He sighed.
Daryl exhaled; he hadn’t realized he was holding his breath. That was a close call; thank goodness this guy was so gullible. He needed to play it cool for maybe a year or so then he could transfer back to civilization. Ya, he’d be careful and keep his anger in control.
Daryl’s careful lasted exactly one week, Hate and Fear constantly hovered over him, holding sway over his emotions. He just started his first solo shift, when he received a dispatch about a stolen red and green bike. He was driving down Lexington Avenue and he spotted two black youth pushing the bike.
“There you go Daryl, two thieving punks; they aren’t even trying to hide it. No respect for law enforcement because of the panty waists that work this town.” Hate sneered into Daryl’s ear.
Daryl whipped the car around and slid it onto the sidewalk in front of the boys. He jumped out, and pulled his gun. The owner of Ralph’s Market had been sweeping the side walk when Daryl squealed up.
“Hey! What are you doing? Those are just kids.” The owner of the convenience store ran over yelling.
“On your knees, now!” Daryl yelled ignoring the store owner.
The store owner approached Daryl slowly; his arms outstretch to show he meant no harm.
“It’s just Charlie and Finn, their good kids your scaring them.”
“See, no respect, these people need to be taught a lesson!” Hate growled as he floated around Daryl’s head.
“If you don’t stop them they will turn on you!” Fear whined.
Daryl put away his gun, much to the shop owner’s relief. But then he took out his night stick, calmly walked over and hit the store owner across the face, over and over he swung his stick, until the store owner fell to the ground in a bloody heap. Terrified the boys took off running. Daryl took off in pursuit. Sally the store clerk caught the attack on her phone, after posting it on social media, she called the sheriff.
“Incident going down at Ralph’s Market, one man down, Officer involved.” Came over the scanner, Sean headed in the direction of the store, anxiety eating a hole in his stomach,
“Is everyone okay?” Sean asked when he pulled up.
“Yes Sean, I’m okay just really sore.” Ralph mumbled cradling his bruised and bloody face.
“Where is the officer?” Sean asked the people standing around Ralph.
“He’s chasing Charlie and Finn, I don’t know why? Larry from gas station attendant told him.
“We’ve called an ambulance for Ralph, please save those boys.” Mrs. Coogan the school librarian shouted.
“Which way did they go?” Sean yelled as he got in his vehicle.
“I know, I’ll show you,” Sally said jumping into the back of the car.
Hope entered the car with Sean, she saw self importance hiding behind Sally’s shoulder, ignoring it she guided Sean to where he needed to be. Love flew to the boys side, she counseled Daryl to stop, he was wrong, the boys weren’t stealing the bike they were going to fix it and repaint it as a surprise for their friend.
Daryl hesitated, indecision was warring in his head, he saw the boys cowering behind a bunch of garbage cans.
“Punish them, they are the same as the trash they are hiding behind” Hate shrieked.
I’m going to teach you boys about what happens to thieves! Daryl growled. He stalked to the cans and grabbed one of the boys, he started beating him with his night stick. Sean pulled up and ran to stop Daryl; he tackled him to the ground and put him in a choke hold.
“Stop! Your under arrest for assault” Sean screamed as he tried to cuff Daryl.
“Even he is against you, what kind of town is this, you need to take control, show them what a real cop can do!” Fear coaxed Daryl. Hate attacked Love when she tried to influence Daryl again, ripping at her face with his long sharp talons. Hope flew out of the vehicle to help Love, but Fear attacked her from behind. Strife and Cruelty came out of nowhere and joined the battle. The demons clawed and bit the angels as Daryl got the upper hand on Sean.
Daryl flipped himself over and grabbed Sean’s gun and with no hesitation shot him in the chest, then he walked over to Charlie who was unconscious from the beating he been given and pulled the trigger. The gun jammed. He looked around for the other boy. He searched the area, walking right past the boy but he didn’t see him. He decided to stage the area to cover his tracks. He put the gun in the boy’s hand, making sure the kid’s prints covered the gun. Kicking it aside he went back to his cruiser and called the sheriff.
“Officer down, repeat Officer down.”
The sheriff had been speaking with Stu before the call came in, Stu had reported the assault. Realizing he had a bad cop on his hands the sheriff made a call to Daryl’s old boss and found out why he’d been transferred. So, when the call came into the station, he grabbed the mike from the dispatcher.
“Where are you?”
“Lexington and Tuttle.”
“Sean, the perp shot him, he’s dead and the perp is down.” Daryl said trying to act upset.
When Joy, Peace, Patience and Kindness arrived and the demons scattered, Love limped to the boy behind the garbage can, she kept him cloaked until the sheriff and other deputies arrived. Hope stayed with Sean and Charlie giving them both some of her strength so they would live. The others Angels formed a barricade around Sean’s vehicle shielding Sally who was hiding and filming what was happening. Daryl didn’t realize there was a witness to his crime until it was to late.
The sheriff arrived with reinforcements, He immediately confiscated Daryl’s weapon and secured the scene. An ambulance arrived and the paramedics let the sheriff know Sean was alive. Officers scoured the scene and found Finn and Sally. The sheriff viewed the video footage and confiscated the phone. He also arrested Daryl at the scene.
The video had gone viral before the Sheriff could stop it and by that night the community was being overrun with protesters. The sheriff held a press conference letting the community and the media know that the boys were fine, Charlie had a slight concussion, but he was otherwise doing well. Finn suffered a fright but he too was doing well. Officer Sean was in stable condition after a surgery to remove the bullet and Ralph Coogan received 15 stitches and was sent home the same day. The protesters didn’t really care about any of that. They called for the defunding of the Sheriffs department, some were screaming for the death of cops. They didn’t care that an officer had been shot trying to stop Daryl, it didn’t matter that they had immediately arrested him either. They wouldn’t even listen to the boys parents who stood with the Sheriffs office. That first night Main Street was trashed, windows were broken and merchandise stolen, cars and dumpster were set on fire, chaos reined. The second night was much the same except with the addition of the protestors torching the sheriff’s office, no one was hurt but people in the town were terrified.
“Now we know what the Evil Ones plan was, chaos and destruction of this community.” Love said. She and the Angels floated above the town. They noticed that even more demons had descended on the town, darting to and fro amidst the strangers rioting and looting.
“We need to regain control.” Faithfulness said. “I will go to God’s children and encourage them to pray.
“That’s a very good idea, I need to go to the Sheriff and try to influence him to call a town meeting.” Peace uttered as she flew away.
Love and Hope told the other angels to influence as many people as they could. Then they all dispersed.
The sheriff called in the National Guard to help stop the destruction, he also called a private town meeting, no outsiders were allowed.
The town people started arriving for the meeting around 6pm, the college auditorium was the only building big enough to accommodate all the citizens of Bear River. The press, media outlets and the protesters tried to get in, but the sheriff’s ban worked and only citizens made it inside.
They started the meeting with prayer; the angels were all present. They discussed what had happened and how it affected the community, everyone had a voice. There was some anger and bitterness, it was addressed. There were concerns and worries and the sheriff promised a stricter policy on new hires. They aired all their grievances and fears. The angels kept everyone calm. At the end of the evening they had a plan to take their community back.
The demons stayed away from the meeting place, they weren’t confident enough to take on a whole battalion of angels. So the protesters gathered outside the auditorium and complained about the secrecy, but there was no violence or destruction that night.
The sheriff called for an 8pm curfew, the next evening the citizens gathered at 6:30 for a prayer vigil. They prayed for Deputy Sean, Charlie, Finn and for Ralph, they prayed for peace and healing of their community and they prayed for those people who felt the need to protest and they even prayed for Daryl. At 7:30 the citizens of the community went peacefully to their homes. At 8pm the Sheriff stood in front of the protesters, with the National Guard at his back.
“I am here to ask you to disperse,” some of the protesters chanted about police brutality, others yelled about racial profiling, death for cops and various slogans joined the canopy of voices. The Sheriff got the loud speaker out and calmly told the crowd,
“The decision is yours but I will let you know, that in 30 minutes we will be turning on these water cannons they are filled with blue dye, the water we are pumping is from the sewage plant. Anyone out on the streets will be hosed down then apprehended and taken to a tent city that we’ve set up near the sewage plant. You will be held for 48 hours, NO showers and NO phone calls will be provided.” The Sheriff stood quietly by as the protesters shouted obscenities and threatened lawsuits. But 25 minutes later the streets were clear. Vans, buses and cars left the community and the residents breathed a sigh of relief.
The angels smiled as the demons left in a trail of smoke. They’d won the battle but the war continued and would continue until the Lion of Judah came and threw the Evil One into the pit.