“The Cross and The Bow”

A Young Author's Notebook
7 min readNov 8, 2023

*Trigger Warning: Mentions of Assualt and Violence in the Church*

This was written down in either 2000 or 1999, he didn’t specifically put a date. He had told me this story verbally, but also typed this story out.

The Cathedral was not well lit. The angel sat on the Altar. I didn’t know her name- maybe she had one? She knew mine. Her hair was yellow, but not blonde. She knew why I had entered the sacred hall.

Her gown was flowy, but she was very real. the voice of her- as she begins to speak -sparked my interest.

“You wish to know Ellio? You wish to know your purpose?” The voice said. The angel did not turn to me yet, for she waited quite a little bit. I could sense her power. She told me I should fear not, for I would not be harmed. I walked near her, my pride in one hand, my questions in the other. When I reached the altar, only then did she turn to me.

“Don’t be frightened- I will say you are a man. Man-who knows, but not everything. You are always searching- and believe me- your body does not know what you are capable of,” She spoke. I felt something slowly tie around my waist. I knew she was holding me there. When she then looked at me- our eyes met. Beautiful- her eyes were like watery blue. They were real- but I couldn’t look away. I was glued to her. She was reading me like a book. What chapter was she on? “18,” She whispers. As I continue to look at her, I begin to feel something being injected in my veins. It feels good, but I didn’t know what it is? It felt like water and air, but with vines, wrapping around my insides. I begin to realize I cannot take anymore of this, for it begins to burn inside me. I try to move, but she pulls tighter, where I cannot move. I feel sick, but I still feel the water in my veins. It is getting to the point of where the water is filling my lungs, I’m suffocating. I look for an exit, but she notices and says, “Do not make any sudden movements!” She has an arrow close to my head. It is rather sharp.

“Move and the arrow will hit you,” She whispers. I stay still for her. She looks at my hands.

“The hands and the feet- they are pierced by sharp arrows- or as you mortals call nails- do you believe that?” She whispers. I don’t reply, only look at her. She releases me, but I dare not run. She has an arrow in her hand. As she looks at me- she says, “You will have to be the one to use the arrow- be careful- it will hurt.” I back away slowly. I don’t hurt people.

“Ellio, your bow is your own wrestle with holiness,” She said.

I looked as she got up from the altar. I fell to my knees, she was beautiful and had such a brightness to her. I could finally see her bow and arrow, but her hands had marks as if they had been pierced by an arrow.

“You will understand thy power- Go! Forth into the world and make good!” She commanded. I backed away so much so, that I ended up out the door. I fell back onto the concrete. Is that what people experience when they see an angel? I then heard my name.

“Hello Billy!” What are you doing?” I looked up and I saw her, a glorious vision- Alisha (Al-Lee- Sha)- her beautiful curly black hair, lovely blue eyes. She had on that lovely blue dress, but I saw that bruise on her thigh. I notice and I wish I could knock the tar out of that ass of a father and that shit hat of a brother she has. Alisha is beatiful, never hurt anyone, yet men act like beasts around her. She carries her Bible. I don’t want her to go inside.

“Bye Billy!” She says as she opens the door. I get up quickly and I follow her- I didn’t want her to see what I had just seen. I noticed that she was at the altar, kneeling, and praying. I looked around to see if I saw the angelic figure I had just seen. I saw her! The angel with her bow, but no arrows. I turned my focus to Alisha.

She noticed me and got up from kneeling. I felt so much love for her. She was not a bad person, but she took their blame!

“Oh Billy! Your hand!” She said, as she looked at my palm, blood. I believed I had been knicked. She took out her hanky and wrapped my hand. I held her hand with my other. “What are you doing here anyhow?” I ask, hoping I don’t get a confirmation of what I was feeling.

“Oh! I’m here to see Father Layley. I-I have to ask for his help!” She tried to say, looking down. She was not a bad person. “You don’t need any help! You’re a great gal!” I say and she is!

“Billy! I have sinned- and I need to ask Father Layley if I could be forgiven,” She begs. I then see the man — a man she has to deliver herself to. I see him- he is not a real priest- he’s a man wearing priest’s clothing- like a wolf wearing sheep’s clothing. I feel a sense of rage. He’s calling her name. I hold her hand a little tightly. She tries to make me let go. I don’t want him laying a hand on her. As I look at him, I see the lines of him. Is he even real? He calls her again.

“I’m coming! I have to go Billy, but I’ll see you after!” She smiles as she quickly kisses my cheek. I watch her go with the demon man. The angel then appears.

“Ellio! You have the power to do good for this girl! Your suspicions are correct! He is just a mortal wearing the cloth! Go! You have the arrow! Use it wisely! You are a good man Ellio! Go to her!” The angel said. I tried to walk away, but my ears began to burn. I heard the man’s voice. He told her she needed to remove her dress. I could see her doing as she was told. He grabbed a flogger and began hitting her with it. I couldn’t believe I began hearing her cries for mercy- for him to stop. As I continued seeing how he was violating her body- the way his nails touched intimate parts of her — and she begged for mercy. I couldn’t just walk away. As God as my wittness, I was not going to let this demon hurt an innocent girl. I managed to get past the double doors- and I heard his voice say, “Say you like it, you SLUT!” My ears burned with such anger. I found the door. She cried that she was sorry. I don’t know what possessed me- but I bust open the door- where I saw her tender flesh, red and bloodied from his torment. He had one of her arms behind her back, with his other hand, clawing at her. My eyes began to see red. I knew as a gentleman, I am not violent- but this girl- I was not going to let her suffer any longer. I grabbed that demon by the neck by both of my bear hands- and I slammed himn against the wall. I held out my hand and the arrow appeared in my hand. My lungs burned- my eyes angered. Alisha slowly put on her dress.

“Are you going to kill me boy?” The Demon man asked. I began to feel my hands get tighter around him.

“You are NO MAN OF GOD! YOU LEAVE HER BODY TO GOD — NOT TO YOUR FANTASIES, YOU SICK FUCK!” I scream. I rasie the arrow above me. I hear her scream for mercy. I lower my hand. He begins to laugh.

“What would you like with a whore like that?” That was enough! I begin using my fists to punch the tar out of him. She screams for me to stop. “You touch her again- I’ll make sure the devil can have you!” I curse. I stab the arrow in his chest. He screams.

“YOU TOUCH HER AGAIN, THERE WILL BE HELL TO PAY!” I yell. He nods. I let him go and I take Alisha’s hand. She cries and I walk her outside.

“How is God going to forgive me now? How am I going to show my face here again?” She cries. I say- “You- are God’s gift to me! You do not need that man hurting you again!” I want to hold her, but she is very upset.

“Billy I have to go- bye,” She whispers. I watch her walk away. As I look at the Cathedral- I see the angel sitting at the top. She fades away. I am angered by this. I look at the building and see the cross that bears the building. How could God let her think she’s that? I am no Sheppard, but I will not think this is God’s work. The cross is my bow-but I will shoot the arrows to defeat that evil.

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A Young Author's Notebook

Kate. Autistic. I am a Jewish woman who doesn't have a clue of what's she's doing, so bear with me.