“I bear ill will to both my father and mother! They will pay for abandoning me.“ Stephen looked around the chamber as beads of sweat rolled down his back. The chamber was dark; lit only by the faint red light of embers burning in sconces hanging haphazardly on the walls. There were other creatures in the room too but it was difficult to make them out as more than just vague shadows. It was anonymity that protected all who would meet here.
“And what would you have of me?” rumbled a voice from above. The audience chamber was hewn from stone and the ceiling angled upwards from the sides into an passage that rose higher out of sight. The voice reverberated from the ceiling of the audience chamber. From somewhere beyond the entrance behind Stephen came a long shrill screech catching all of the chamber’s occupants off guard and putting them off ease. “You would have my favor and the power that comes with it?”
“Yeessss,” Stephen replied.
“You know the oath that is expected of you.” Everyone in the chamber knew the oath. “Swear the oath then demonstrate your worthiness. I will then grant my favor.”
Stephen took a breath to control his excitement. It had been a long struggle to get here and earn the chance at this favor. “You will ascend into heaven. Your thrown will be above the Stars of God. You will sit upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north. You will ascend above the heights of the clouds. You will be like the most High.”