It was half as tall as he was, and twice the width of his music stand.
“Same old, same old,” he muttered, tapping a long forefinger against his lip. He counted the binders again. Twelve.
“Twelve binders of music to sing and all eternity in front of us.” His shoulders sagged and he turned away. “How many times have we sung it through, volume one to volume twelve?”
Hamiel didn’t answer the Angelic Choir director. Instead, he pointed toward the room across the hall. “You could go find something over there.”
Ginaldiel wrinkled his nose in disgust. “Ugh. You can’t even call the stuff in that library ‘music.’ No symmetry, no praise, no beauty, it’s all… pointless. And much of it is simply -unsingable. Nope. Throne Room music must at least be musical.”
“Not all rap is bad,” Hamiel protested. “Neither is all non-religious music.”
“The good stuff isn’t over there,” glared the Director, “it’s already in the Binders.” He crossed the room and yanked Volume Eleven from the shelf. “Here,” he grunted, flipping to section four and handing it to the Choir Assistant.
Hamiel glanced through the pages, mumbling an occasional rap lyric and providing a stream of commentary on the songs in the Binder. “This one’s good. Remember when the composer got here? We stood at the Gate to welcome him – did you see the look on his face when he recognized what we were singing?” The two angels laughed at the memory. For a moment, Ginaldiel’s frown relaxed, but the moment passed and he returned to his brooding.
“Okay, that’s it,” he announced with finality, curling his long fingers into fists, startling the Assistant.
“I’m going to the Throne Room.”
“Is there more music coming in today?” The Assistant started up eagerly.
“No. But I’m going to ask for something new.”
“From where? I mean, ‘whom?’ You can’t ask Him to make up music in praise of Himself!”
“No, but maybe he’ll let ME do it.”
“Create music?” The Assistant was incredulous. “You can’t! You’re an angel! Only humans have the Gift!”
“Well, none of them are writing any praise music! It’s not like He doesn’t ask! It’s all over the scriptures – ‘sing a new song unto the Lord,’ right? But no one ever does! The drivel that’s being written is not exactly Throne Room material, and I think I will go crazy if we have to sing the same twelve Binders of music for all Eternity!”
Hamiel shook his head. “He’s not going to go for it.”
“I know,” sighed Ginaldiel, deflated, sinking onto a stool.
They sat quietly for a small part of eternity, Ginaldiel wondering what he would have the Choir sing at the next Heavenly Feast; Hamiel wondering what Ginaldiel would do.
Suddenly, the door shook under a furious pounding. Ginaldiel leaped to his feet and flew across the room to the door. He threw it open.
It was a Human Soul, looking up at the angel with joyously shining eyes. Both angels bowed.
“Ginaldiel,” exclaimed the Soul, “Good news!”
“Music?” the two angels breathed simultaneously.
The Soul grinned and nodded. “A Sunday School teacher in Western Ontario just wrote a new song!”
“Ohh,” the angels sighed together. “Is it praise?”
The Soul nodded.
“Did the composer put any Love of the Master into it?”
The Soul grinned. “Come and listen,” he beckoned.
Ginaldiel capered, jumped, linked arms with Hamiel and swung around the room before landing with a bump in front of the bookshelf. In a instant, Binder Twelve was in his hands. He turned and bowed again to the Soul. “Thank you, sir, for informing me.”
“Ginaldiel, please call me ‘Wolfgang.’ It was my pleasure. I knew how happy it would make you.”
The Assistant suppressed a giggle. How many times had Mr. Mozart asked Ginaldiel to call him by his first name? The response this time was no different.
“Thank you, Sir, but as my superior, I cannot address you so familiarly. As we have discussed. Sir.”
The Soul laughed and disappeared. Ginaldiel, stopping to straighten the stole of his office, gripped the Binder in anticipation of the new song about to enhance it and followed the Soul to the Throne Room.