Hidden Clip: An Interview with Raphael, an Archangel from Out in Blue

~An Interview with Raphael, an Archangel from Out in Blue, by Sarah Gliman

On a warm spring day, I got a chance to see what few of us humans ever get to see: Vermont’s demon colony, Sanctuary. I traveled to the rural northeast region of the state where a pair of demon Guardians escorted me into the colony. After a tour of Sanctuary—a settlement built under the cover of dense forest exclusively for demon and fallen archangel inhabitants—I got the chance to interview several of the residents. Today’s interview is with Raphael, one of the archangels of Out in Blue, book one in the Return to Sanctuary series.

My Guardian escorts lead me through a building they refer to as the “town hall” and we pass by offices and classrooms. On the second floor, they open a set of glass French doors and I step out onto a large balcony that has no furniture or railings. Raphael stands at the very edge and turns to face me. His white wings frame his body and massive flight feathers cascade down to his ankles. After introductions, I dive into my questions.

Q: Like all the archangels who remain on earth, you rely on the Guardians for protection from the poachers. Many people are surprised that demons protect angels. How did such an arrangement come about?

A: Various religions, folklore, culture, and media reinforce the idea that demons are evil, and fallen angels are viewed no differently. {He shakes his head and stares out across the colony.}Humans lash out at both of our species, so it’s only natural we stick together. It’s a mutually beneficial arrangement. Demons do have a dark side, and that makes them excellent fighters…perhaps “predators” is a better word. That said, severe injuries do occur, and I’ve saved many of their lives with my ability to promote healing. All archangels have psychic talents of some sort, and we use them to assist the demons whenever possible.

Q: Not all humans hate the archangels and the demons. You took a human as a mate, correct? How did the two of you meet?

A: {He smiles.} Kora was a musician and she volunteered a day every week to teach piano and voice in the colony. Before she left each evening, she’d sit at the piano and play. {He points out a large second-floor window to the side of the balcony. A piano is visible in the room beyond.}  I couldn’t stay away from the sound as she played and sang, so every week I’d crouch right here and listen. She’d smile and make eye contact, but otherwise she ignored me. I started leaving flowers and other gifts on the ledge outside of the window, and finally one day she left the window open.

Q: Wren, the hero of Out in Blue, is your son. What are some of the challenges of raising a winged child?

A: There are several things, but the most challenging issue to deal with was his lack of fear when it came to heights. {He flicks his wings and stares at the ground below us.} Earthborn archangels cannot fly until their flight feathers grow during their early teens, but the innate desire to be off the ground is there from birth. He was always wandering too close to the edge of these flight decks, or rushing into other situations where he could have fallen if we turned our backs for a second. We needed to keep him safe without teaching him to fear heights. A difficult balance, indeed.

Q: Wren’s an adult now, and you didn’t see him for years. Did he turn out as you expected?

A: Yes. He’s a fighter and a survivor. The challenges archangels face in this life are horrible, but I knew from the moment I first saw him that he’d be able to face those trials.

Readers, if you have any questions for me or Raphael, I’d love to hear them!  

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