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Short story #4 – The day I died

“What happened?” I murmured to myself trying to understand what was the terrific sound I heard a few seconds back. It was like the rumor of metal wrecks hitting each other. It scared me so much that I didn’t have the courage to open my eyes.

The sensation of pain that I just felt was incredible and yet it lasted less than a second.

“At the count of three I’ll open my eyes” I thought. And there I did when I reached three I was standing close to the carcass of the bus smashed to the side of the lorry.

It was terrible to see all that contorted body but the question arises. How did I survive? How was it possible that I was standing there? Did I…? Oh my god my body was lying from one of the windows. The headphones are still on my head, probably pushing Hans Zimmer soundtracks to my dead ears.

”Well. Shit!” I thought.

“I bet it seems weird,” a voice spoke from behind me.

Please don’t be a Grimm reaper, please don’t be a Grimm Reaper, please don’t be a Grimm reaper,” at the third time I turned and looked at the girl sitting on the bench at the entrance of the park.

She took her finger and pointed down. No, that was it. I was going to hell. I guess that that was the destiny of an atheist.

I knelt, trying to get some mercy then she exploded in a laugh.

“I’m joking, don’t worry. I’m not a reaper,”

“So. What are you?” I was confused.

“I’m a ghost,” she replied with a captain obvious tone.

I was about to start asking questions where I noticed we weren’t alone, thousands of other souls were going around doing their own business and they didn’t seem much interested in me.

“What’s going on here?” I asked.

“You sided and here you are. I know it sucks but it is.”

“So what about hell or heaven?” I asked.

She scrolled her shoulders.

“Never know nothing about it. Never got to choose or to be dragged. I just still exist.”

It was like the mashups of many different worldviews. The atheist, the theist, the spiritual, all together in one.

“So my consciousness just detached from my body and I can continue to live? To travel? To pursue my hobbies?”

“Seems like it,” she replied with a smile and then she started explaining what she knew or she thought she knew.

Consciousness is something so deep and great that it is impossible to erase it and when we die all that ball of personhood, ideas, dreams, loves, hate, failure, victories. It all stays there and is able to continue to learn and interact.

“So there are no rules? No punishment?”

“Oh yes. There is. It’s been created over time, since the first living being whose consciousness was able to stay over and when humans came they created this solid set of unwritten rules we have to follow. If not, you get punished.”

“That sounds nice,” I said but it passed when she pointed up and I finally noticed the black cloud above us.

“That is the court of law, that thing has controlled people for thousands of centuries and even though civilization on the living side improved, they weren’t up to speed and they still have some eye for an eye way to see it,” she explained.

That looked like some serious 1984 thing to me and yet I knew that I was decent enough to stay on this side of the rules.

“So what do you do to pass the time,” I said just before a ball of energy stopped close to us giving me a fright, just after I realized I did not have adrenaline anymore that could give me a fright. It was a caveman.

“I Jookkor, give me five,” the girl said and the caveman did it.

“How was your journey to the center of the universe?” she asked.

“I stopped at the edge of this galaxy. Too much to explore,”

“Sorry? How does a caveman know about galaxies and the universe?”

“I learned along the millenia I was dead. I met some good astronomers. Like the Kepler guy when I went to see a replica of my body at the museum of natural sciences of Kholn.”

“And can you travel in space?” I asked.

They both looked at me as if I was asking the unobvious. At that moment I tried to levitate and Oh π×÷§ °^√® I was flying.

“Wait for it,” I told them before going up in the sky. I was in √π÷×ing space.

I did two or three rounds of the planet and I came back.

“I was ©¢√πing flying.”

“Aye,” she replied by rolling her eyes. That was the best sensation of my entire life.

“Can I go to the moon?” I asked.

Jookkor looked at me as if he was asking me if he was a joke to me. After all he just came back from a journey at the edge of the galaxy.

That meant that the boundaries were the universe and the sensation was amazing. Way more amazing than I could have ever imagined. Being dead was a freaking deal.

That I come back to my feelings. Thinking about my parents, my sister and my friends.

“Don’t you miss them?” I asked her.

“I do sometimes but there is no coming back and I have to go on, they have to go on with their lives,”

“Why?” I asked upsetted.

“Because this is how it works,” Jookkor replied.

“The universe, evolution, energy and matter,” he replied.

I looked confused.

“I don’t know. But it is how it is. There is no way of changing it. We can’t come back.”

I looked at them unable to accept my destiny and I’ll soon understand I had too as they did but I’m that moment I decided I would have realized my dream of becoming an astronaut. The number of stars was so vast that a shiver of fear hit me. How could I have visited them all? And then I remembered I had all the time in the universe. And maybe when the universe would have started to shrink, it would have been even easier.

-ldmarchesi

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