So, I wrote a story.
The angel answered, "The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God. Even Elizabeth your relative is going to have a child in her old age, and she who was said to be barren is in her sixth month. For nothing is impossible with God." Luke 1: 38
Mary had taken her seat at the word "David." She knew what it meant. Messiah. And, it was insane.
For a brief, hysterical moment, Mary almost snorted. This angel was sitting in her kitchen, looking like a man, but no man she'd ever seen. And, even more importantly, no man her parents had ever seen, either. For the millionth time since he began speaking, Mary thought, My parents are going to kill me.
He was sitting with his elbows on his knees, and he had finally stopped looking at her; instead, he looked at the ground between his feet—He was waiting.
She opened her mouth to speak, but every word died in her throat. This had to be some sort of joke, or perhaps she had gone mad.
She was only fourteen. She wasn't due to be married for another year or more, and if they didn't actually stone her, the women of Nazareth would have plenty to talk about while getting water at the well for the next nine months, nine years, forever. She could already hear whispers, words like, shameful and her poor parents and Joseph was such a nice young man. Pity.
So, she said nothing, and she turned her gaze from the man, no—the angel, and she, too, stared at the floor. In her mind, she could see the faces of her parents, could picture what they would have looked like at her wedding feast, then she thought about what they would look like as they were pushed away by a crowd, men with white knuckles and dusty fingers holding tightly to very large rocks. She swallowed.
Messiah, she thought again. Messiah.
I have gone insane. This is… well. This is impossible.
She closed her eyes and saw the Temple on the Sabbath. She could smell the food outside, hear the doves cooing from their cages, hear the droning of the Pharisees' prayers, and then she thought of rocks some more.
Mary took a deep breath, and for some reason, she could no longer think of anything at all. Her entire world had come down to this man sitting next to her and the breath going in and coming out of her chest.
And, the time that past could have been hours, or it could have been seconds, but after an age she looked again at the man. He lifted his head and looked back at her.
His eyes were like nothing she'd ever seen before, and what she found even more remarkable about them was the sympathy behind them. In all this waiting he had not tapped his toe or huffed impatient breaths or even straightened his robe. He just sat there, but when he looked at her, his expression was much more than sympathetic.
It was hopeful. It was waiting. Her mind went back to Temple, where she could see the faces of the poor outside, waiting for bread or alms. He had moved to the edge of his seat.
Something about that look shook her, and she felt her stomach tighten. Messiah, she thought again. "Favored One," she remembered him calling her. "The Lord is with you," he had said, and suddenly, in that moment, she believed.
It was insane. She would surely shame her family and Joseph. She would surely be stoned to death. And for some reason, she just couldn't be bothered to care. None of it mattered, because there was so much more that was important. Messiah.
She took another deep breath, and the angel took her hand.
Even in her own ears, her voice was whisper-soft. "I am the Lord's servant," she managed. "May it be to me as you have said."
The angel's face broke into a smile, and if she had had doubts about whether or not he was an angel before, they were laid to rest then and there. She saw a crystal tear fall down his face as he placed a hand on her cheek and left, and the feeling she had after was the oddest mixture of relief and hope and fear.