In every moment of every day the world dies and is born anew.
Contemporary angels would be excused for not knowing the name of Azrael. Ever since the expulsion of the Grigori, Heaven has only referred to him by his title: The Archangel of Death.
In spite of the imposing Word, Azrael is rather pleasant and approachable, valuing each day as if it might be his last. The other Archangels occasionally wonder at his adoption of the pagan philosophy of Stoicism, but Azrael finds that it fits his duty and outlook as the witness of endings.
Physically, Azrael tends to manifest as a lithe, well dressed man slightly over seven feet tall. He frequently wears mourning colors – but knows enough funerary traditions that this barely puts a dent in his wardrobe options. His celestial form is much the same but ranges anywhere from 2 to 200 times as tall. On the whole he prefers wakes and remembrances to actual funerals, but he knows that the rituals are not for his benefit and will always respect those who have suffered a loss.
However, the Archangel of Death is something of an outsider when it comes to the war with Hell. Ever since the Flood he has remained conspicuously neutral. He will observe, but not interfere. Azrael will gladly exchange information with those servants of Heaven who know how to reach him – but even his Malakim are unlikely to engage in direct combat unless they have received direct instruction from the Seraphim Council, something that has only happened once.
This hands off attitude has bought the Angels of Death slightly more acceptance in the Outer Marches, and they do not hold the other afterlives in the same contempt as their colleagues – but they must still deal with the distrust sowed by Uriel and the Tsayadim.
It is the job of Azrael’s servitors to observe and remember, not to intervene. It is therefore dissonant for one of his servitors take a mortal life or to use supernatural means to save the life of someone whose death is a part of the Symphony.
Seraphim – (Partially Restricted) Azrael’s Seraphim are masters of forensics. By looking at a corpse they can tell the cause of death. With a successful resonance roll they can also see past Saminga’s “Natural Causes” attunement.
Cherubim – Death’s Cherubim make it their mission to safeguard the tombs and legacies of the dead. They may add their Ethereal Forces to any History or Storytelling roll.
Ofanim – Sometimes known as the reapers or the couriers of souls, these angels are tasked with helping ghosts to resolve whatever issues keep them from reaching their final reward. They may add their Celestial Forces to any roll made to Perceive a dead spirit or dream shade.
Elohim – (restricted) – The Elohim of Death can use their Resonance on a corpse to learn what someone felt at the time of their death. They can also use this ability on the undead to determine whether or not they were a willing participant in their transformation.
Malakim – Azrael’s Virtues can easily discern what realm a ghost or dream shade will go to once its anchor has been destroyed. They can recognize the undead on sight.
Kyriotates – (restricted) – The Kyriotates of Death do their best to ease the pain of passing, and can usually be found in hospitals and war zones. They do not suffer dissonance or trauma if their host dies by natural causes.
Mercurians – Azrael’s Mercurians can tell with a touch who will miss a person or animal when it passes. They frequently work at suicide prevention centers.
Grigori – (restricted) – Azrael Watchers stand witness to the end of every mortal life. They can hear the disturbance caused by a mortal’s death even when it is not caused by a Celestial or Ethereal.
Bright Lilim – (restricted) – Without the light of heaven, Azrael cannot remake the Daughters of Lilith into angels. However, he can make them mortal. This functions like a permanent version of Asmodeus’s Humanity attunement. Those who achieve their Destiny may ascend to heaven as a pure soul, those who fail will descend to hell – never to escape again.
Harmonized Dirge – In the aftermath of an unnatural death, these angels do not disturb the Symphony with their Songs until they have matched the ambient level of disturbance.
Humanity – This attunement functions like the Asmodeus’ Servitor Attunement of the same name, except that the day ends at Dawn.
Allies: None, Azrael is an Outcast
Neutral: Eli, Jordi, Novalis, Yves
Hostile: Anyone Unlisted
Enemies: Dominic, Lawrence, Michael
Rites [Added 6/6/2015]
- Respectfully attend a funerary service from start to finish.
- Dispatch one of the undead (1/day).
- Witness the natural passing of one who has met their destiny.
Expanded Rites [Added 6/6/2015]
- Prevent a death by Celestial causes.
Chance of Invocation: 1
+1 A yartzeit candle
+2 A funerary urn
+3 A small wake
+4 An execution
+5 The end of a bloodline
+6 The extinction of a species
Bugut, Cherub of Death, Steward of the Dragon Graveyard
Deep in the Marches, there is rumored to be an enormous graveyard filled with Dragon bones. It was always a quiet and holy place where the Angels of Death and the great Dragons could meet before the magnificent creatures entered their final repose. Now it stands as a lonely monument to Uriel‘s genocide.
Somewhere within it’s bone-white sands the Tortoise Cherub, Bugut, weeps for the atrocities committed by his kin. Those who approach with respect may pass a word on to Death. Those who wish to loot the graveyard had best do so quickly and and far from sight. Those who have aided the Tsayadim would be advised to not approach at all – Bugut has not yet forgiven the Servitors of Purity.
The Little Death
Although Blandine and Azrael rarely meet any more, their Servitors have become exceedingly close. Blandine is especially happy with Death’s hands-off approach to the corporeal realm, and is more than happy to give his servitors access to rites and attunements. In exchange Azraels servitors will help the dreamers find those who are near death and in need of consolation.
Servitors of Death also get along with Ethereals better than most angels, and have been known to come to blows with the Tsayadim over the fate of Ethereal burial sites. Those who know of the conflicts view it as just more evidence that heaven was right to expel each group.
Azrael and Lilith
Lilith has lived for thousands of years, well beyond the typical human span. This has led many to wonder whether or not Azrael somehow interfered with her natural death. The Grigori Archangel is, of course, silent on the matter – but the proclivities of his Choir are well known.
If true, it would indicate that Lilith is deeply in Azrael’s debt – which would further explain why she goes to such great lengths to avoid death now.
Just as Gabriel can feel Belial, Azrael is ever aware of Saminga. The two Deaths do not get along – but they do not drive each other crazy the way Fire does. Instead, they each see the other as a meddler. Saminga tries to avoid the Azrael, and confides heavily on the undead who shall never pass through the Archangel’s hands. Conversely, Azrael considers Saminga’s reversal of death to be deeply unsettling, and does his best to hamper his demonic counterpart from the shadows.