Anya had read through the prophecy once already but found it made little sense to her. After giving herself a moments rest she looked over it again.

When the lion, beaked by an owl, rises from the dead remains of an old nest a leader will come to the faithful. His wisdom will see through all veils and be the final judge. People will perish without his guidance. With him, enlightenment will be gained and gifts of devotion bestowed. He will lead his people to a better world as they prepare for the end times.

The end will be known when many signs have been seen and plans made. It will come like a great flying eagle, reaching great speed as its destination approaches.

The first sign of the coming end will be the rising up of the gifted people. They will flock to the leaser as bees to nectar. He will teach them and lead them in the ways of the Ox. Every member will become like the great roots of a tree. Spreading upwards and outwards they will sap everything they need to feed the tree growing beneath the surface.

When the three spoons of prosperity are gathered together with the plough, a badgers set will be made. It will grow and form until it can no longer be contained within it’s shell. It shall keep its desires secret but parade it’s existence to all, growing fat from the ignorance of the weak.

Then comes the great shedding. The badger will detach itself from the world around and shed it’s skin to reveal the gyroscope underneath. Only the worthy will be able to cross the void between the untouched and the enlightened.

The world will react with fear at first until the men with the silver sceptre extend their pledges of allegiance. One by one each oppressor will fall and be judged until all of the evil is separated and made known. Utopia shall blossom, fed by the submission of the unworthy until all of the righteous and unburdened can rejoice together.

Even after a second run through it confused her, but what she could make of it she knew to be wrong. It implied a world’s end would be replaced with some kind of utopia built on slaves of the unsaved. She knew this could not be true as the Bible said otherwise.

Anya picked up her Bible and flicked to Revelation, skim reading through it. It definitely didn’t agree with the prophecy. She then read through the prophecy several more times. She needed to tell her pastors what it said and she knew Sherdan would never let her take it from him. There was no other choice but to memorise it. When she was happy that she would remember it she would leave and tell her pastors.

It hadn’t escaped her notice that Sherdan had told her she would never leave, but God had got her in here and He could get her out again. Even if she had no idea how yet.

She then prayed. She wished for God’s guidance on her next move. Sherdan had changed since she first met him and she knew her actions were partly responsible. God would have the last say in what she did but she wanted to leave on good terms with Sherdan if she could, and sneaking out of his facility would not be conducive to a lasting friendship.

Anya was still praying when Sherdan came back. He apologised when he noticed her kneeling on the floor. She went to get up but found her legs had gone stiff. He helped her move to sit on the edge of the bed.

“Do you often pray on your knees?” he asked. She shook her head.

“Only when I particularly feel that way inclined. Often when I am showing I submit to God’s will over mine.”

“It is snowing,” Sherdan told her. She suspected he had deliberately changed the subject but she didn’t mind. Snow was one of her favourite things. She hobbled over to the window.

“Your feet still hurt?”

“Yes, they are taking a while to heal. They still look horrible.”

“The doctor assured me that the scarring would hardly show in a year or so.”

“To be completely honest I don’t mind if it does. If any of it does,” she motioned to her wrists as she watched the snow fall and settle outside.

“Really? I’d have thought you’d want it to fade quickly?”

“No, God looks at my wounds the same way I would look at the wounds Jesus suffered; with love. Jesus had many wounds because he was obedient and took our place. Now I have wounds and scars because I was obedient.”

“I think God, if he existed, wouldn’t allow people to be hurt.”

“I know he exists and uses all my hurts for my good.”

“So you’re obedient to a God that asks you to endure torture?”

“My God gave everything including his life. He can ask everything, including my life.”

“I don’t understand.”

“I’m happy to bear the scars of my obedience because I’m not alone in doing so.”

Anya looked at Sherdan but it was evident he still didn’t understand. She might as well be talking a completely different language. She sighed and went back to watching the snow. Sherdan stood with her for a bit longer before going and getting the book that held the prophecy

“I assume you’ve read it.” She nodded. “And?” He looked hopefully at her.

“It’s wrong.”

“I disagree.”

“I thought you probably did.” Anya rolled her eyes.

“It has been coming true.”

“Of course it seems right, it’s vague. But it disagrees with the Bible.”

“So you’ll ignore it as being false regardless? How noble of you.”

“It doesn’t really matter what I think. I shall inform my pastor’s and let them decide. I would like to leave now please.” She stepped away from the windows and towards Sherdan. He scowled.

“I’m not letting you leave.”

“You won’t be able to stop me if God thinks it’s time I did so.”

Sherdan came back around from the other side of the bed, shaking his head as he did.

“You don’t seem to understand Anya. I want you here until I have figured out how you fit into this.” He waved the book under her nose. “No deity of any kind will be removing you until I am done with you. Is that clear?”

“I don’t belong to you and don’t think you can keep me trapped in a normal house for long.” Sherdan laughed but Anya didn’t find it entirely unexpected.

“Things have changed since you arrived. This is no longer just a house in the centre of a normal estate. You’re in the centre of a half mile radius of land, all sectioned off. If you escaped this house you would still be stuck on land where every person would bring you right back here. You do belong to me and you had better get used to the idea.”

Sherdan stormed out of her room before she could reply. She soon heard the familiar click of the lock. Tears slid down her cheeks at his outburst.

She wasn’t really upset that he was trying to keep her prisoner. She knew that wouldn’t stop God. She was upset because she had wanted to leave as Sherdan’s friend. He had made it perfectly clear how angry he would be at her if she escaped against his will. She had to try, however. God’s last command to her had been clear: get the prophecy and bring it home.

Anya had enough sense to sit, calm herself and pray for God’s blessing before attempting any kind of escape plan. She knew her door was locked and Sherdan would hear her attempting to break it down so she considered picking the lock.

There wasn’t anything particularly useful to use as a pick, except possibly cutlery from the dinner Sherdan had brought her. It had been forgotten thanks to the argument.

She added lock-picking to the potential list and went to the window. All the windows were locked so no window exit could be quiet. She also noted that she was two floors up from street level and there wasn’t any way down but to jump. She’d be lucky not to break something without God’s protection.

Her only sensible option was to try lock picking unless God explicitly told her otherwise. She picked up the knife from the food tray and went to the door. She soon found that it was far too large for the keyhole and swapped it for the fork. The fork wasn’t much better and Anya was soon kneeling in the middle of the floor begging God for his assistance.

Half an hour later Anya sank into a heap of frustrated tears. She knew God had heard her but if He’d answered she couldn’t hear it. She didn’t want to be here any longer. Her heart ached to be home in Bath, with people that cared for her, where she felt safe and loved.

Anya soon got up off the floor and got into bed. She was tired and knew she always felt more emotional when tired. She would sleep and try again in the morning.


Disclaimer: The above prophecy is a complete work of fiction. I do not expect a single word of it to come true as I made most of it up to fit a random plot idea and then friends challenged me with random items or things to some how include. Please do not start any cults, religious organisations or anything equally group like based on the above idea of how the world might end. I was not divinly inspired.