Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Welcome Special Guest Pamela Turner!

Playing with Seraphic Fire
The Seraphim’s Role in My Paranormal/Urban Fantasy

First, thanks to Amy for letting me on her playground. Warning: I run with scissors. >:-)

One of my favorite things about research is coming across information which supports or validates an idea I’ve used in my stories.

Such a theory is explored in Death Sword, the first book in my Angels of Death series and a work-in-progress currently called The Zaphkiel Project (no relation to the series).

In Death Sword, the Seraphim have cursed Xariel and are the ultimate judges/executioners. They play a more significant role in the second (unreleased) book Serpent Fire, where they directly attack the angels of death.

Their role in The Zaphkiel Project is similar to that in the Angels of Death series, although their presence is never seen. Nevertheless, they are a matter of concern and dread among the other angels. In both my series and stand-alone novel, the Seraphim incinerate their victims with holy fire akin to a nuclear explosion. No mercy, no forgiveness.

How can this be? According to Gustav Davidson’s A Dictionary of Angels, Including the Fallen Angels, the Seraphim “are the angels of love, of light, and of fire.” But is there a more sinister connotation to these beings?  

According to Rosemary Guiley (The Encyclopedia of Angels), the Seraphim “may have evolved from the uraeus, the gold serpent (specifically a cobra) worn by Egyptian pharaohs on their foreheads.” In Serpent Fire, Uriel wears a symbiotic tattoo of a cobra which can come to life at will.

Guiley continues: “In the Hebrew Bible, the term saraf is applied to fiery serpents. Numbers 21: 6-8 refers to fiery serpents sent by the Lord to bite and kill sinning Israelites.” Since Seraph (“fiery serpent”) is singular for Seraphim, could these be the same creatures? And, if so, why the seeming discrepancy?

From her book, The Dictionary of Demons, Michelle Belanger notes that “seraph comes from the Hebrew root saraph, meaning ‘to burn.’ Thus, Seraphim meant ‘the burning ones’ – but not in a good way.”

She adds, “In Deuteronomy 8:15, there is a mention of ‘seraph serpents and scorpions’ in the wilderness, and Isaiah 14:29 talks of a viper that shall come forth from the serpent’s root ‘and his fruit shall be a fiery flying serpent’ – a passage that reads literally ‘a flying seraph.’ From this (Biblical scholar Reverend W.O.E.) Oesterley argues that Seraphim started out as anything but angelic. They were instead theriomorphic demons who haunted the desert...”

My Seraphim have nasty sharp fangs. And they relish pain.

Death Sword Blurb

The only thing more dangerous than an angel of death is one obsessed with vengeance.

Karla Black has always known she’s different from other people. She learns just how different after she's fatally stabbed and brought back to life as a half-human angel of death.

With newfound power comes a newfound boss.

Samael despises her. He considers Karla impure and resents her relationship with her partner Xariel…who also happens to be Samael's ex-lover. When he takes that hatred to a higher level, Karla vows vengeance - a task easier said than done.

With the loss of their angelic powers, Karla and Xariel face a dilemma – how will they defeat an unstoppable Samael, whose poisoned rapier can kill human and angel alike?

If Karla doesn’t awaken to her true identity, both heaven and earth are in danger of annihilation.

Death Sword Excerpt

(Note: For a multi-chapter excerpt, please check out the Google eBook preview.)

Karla lay on the sofa, her heart racing, driven by adrenaline-induced fear. Another scare and
she’d go into cardiac arrest.

Samael loomed over her, hands on either side of her head. “Human filth,” he whispered, “the
sooner I’m rid of you, the better.” A dagger appeared in his hand. The intricate markings differed
from the ones on Xariel’s knife. She’d no doubt Samael meant to kill her. Too bad she hadn’t told Xariel she loved him.

He pushed the tip against her throat. “Should I kill you now?” The chief of satans smiled at
her, a cruel grin which didn’t reach his eyes. “I’d love to, but I want Xariel to watch.” He cocked a brow at her distressed expression. “Oh? Didn’t I tell you? He saw his darling Delilah die. I’m sure he’d be very disappointed if he couldn’t see your final moments.”

Karla swallowed. “What now?” She prayed for a swift death. Samael pressed down on the
dagger. The tip sliced through skin, piercing her windpipe, the sharp pain excruciating. A strangled gasp burbled in her throat. Shock laid a merciful hand on her head. She closed her eyes, letting darkness wash over her.

A heavy weight pressed down on her body. Lungs burning, she struggled for air. Minutes
passed. Nothing happened. No tunnel, no white light. Curious, Karla opened her eyes, tried to sit up.

She couldn’t move.

Panic gnawed at frayed nerves. Samael hadn’t killed her. He’d done far worse. Paralyzed,
she couldn’t defend herself or escape.

“They’ll be back soon,” Samael said. “I’ve kept them busy, but no doubt they’ve finished.
We should go.”

Karla tried to speak. Invisible threads stitched her mouth closed. She rolled her eyes, the
only part able to move, and stared at him. “Why?

Samael noticed. “Frustrating, isn’t it? Don’t worry, it’ll be over soon.”

His fingers closed her eyelids, despite her conscious will to keep them open.

Game over.


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Charlie said...

What a fantastic exerpt. chilling. tantalizing. terrivic. Great job. will have to check out the book.
C.K. Volnek

Anonymous said...

Oh my, Pamela, scary stuff...a true thriller, high tension and most definitely a cliff hanger because I'm in total wonder of what happens next!!

Nice post - thanks for sharing Pamela, Amy.

PamelaTurner said...

Thanks for the great feedback! :-) And thanks, Amy, for allowing me to play in your sandbox.

Charlie, I hope you enjoy the book if you do check it out. :-)

Kay Dee, glad I could keep you in suspense. LOL I love reading mysteries, horror, and thrillers.