It was as I lay on the cellar floor, feeling the blood on my back become sticky and cold, that the angel first spoke to me. She filled the air with the scent of metal and surrounded me with a circle of blue flame, and I was frightened.
“Don’t be afraid,” she told me. “I have come to speak to you, and through you. At the command of the god-machine you shall hear my words and know them to be true.” Her voice was like the notes of a flute and their vibrations calmed my fear. And that was how I learned the secret history of the world.