Angel Pecking Order
Researching for EMBRACE, I discovered the entire subject of Angelology to be truly fascinating. In the end, I chose to go with the most popular theory, that there are 3 choirs of angels and within each choir, 3 ranks.
At the top of the angel hierarchy sit the Seraphim. They are the angels that are supposed to burn with an all-consuming white flame and who perform the all-important role of maintaining the source of Existence within the physical world.
Following the Seraphim come the Cherubim, and Thrones. I always like the descriptions of the Thrones – bringers of justice.
In the second choir are Powers, Dominations and Virtues. And in the third choir – Principalities, Archangels and Angels (guardians).
In writing EMBRACE, discovering each of these ranks and their purpose on earth was what led to the development of my characters powers. Each character is specifically placed within a rank of angels and then given powers accordingly. For example: Griffin is parented by a Seraph angel, meaning he is a leader and his unique power is a mind power (that of reading and delivering truth) to correlate with the description of the Seraphim’s function in the universe. It is a great way of keeping order to the power pool!
Each angelic rank also has a different appearance and different color that represent them and I found this really interesting. Any time I describe an angelic image, it relates back to this research in some way. Additionally, combining this research with things like the Chakra has led me to the use of color as a representation of power and also gemstones as a link to old mythology. For example: Phoenix’s hair is like opal – so black that it shimmers with purple and it catches the light exposing streaks of dazzling silver. First, I loved the idea of his hair being different, but also, it linked to the significance to his power, and his heritage in the story.
Basing the story around the bones of angel mythology and hierarchy gives me a solid structure to use as my foundation. It anchors the story and gives me direction any time I think the story might be straying.
Also, it allowed me to develop one of the big mysteries within the series: what rank is Violet from?
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