”Up and up, and away! And … down the aquarium we go!” He sang the words, ran the macabre way, jumped the trampoline, floated in mid-air for a heartbeat, then plummeted towards the glittering surface way below.
And there came a big wet splash of H₂O, atoms and molecules soaking his very person, stealing his every breath, down to the very last one.
When he had finished drowning, Death claimed his sorry ass soul for some reason, and sent it to wait before a large door made of mother-of-pearl, all shimmering and bright. It balanced, or rested, or simply existed, on a fluffy cloud surrounded by dancing veils of mist, and singing angels and playing cherubs. And, not to forget, those kind of beings and divinations one, when alive and breathing, seldom encounter at, say, Starbucks or the local pub.
”Enter!” said a deep voice from behind the large door. ”Or stay, I couldn’t care less.”
He tried opening the door, but, alas, it was locked, and therefore impossible to open. So he knocked once, twice. ”Ahem …”
”Oy, be gone, ye Devil, ye evil … ah, ye evil … ah, ye, oh, for Heaven’s sake, just use the key, will you.”
Somehow he felt an invisible hand pointing towards a section of the cloud in front of the shimmering door. Or rather, he sensed a direction in his mind, like a silent invocation. Or – he swallowed when the thought hit him like Godlike’s great hammer – was it the voice of Lord Godlike himself?
Trembling, he lifted a fold of the cloud, and there, in a little niche, lay a golden key for him to behold. And hold, or grab, so he picked it up, and approached the door. All of a sudden, the key came alive, rattled in his hand, and flew into the keyhole, unlocking the door by its own divine momentum. Without the slightest sound, perchance only with the humblest of whispers, the door flew open. Through the opening, he laid eyes upon another set of clouds, soft and revealing, fluffy and appealing, on the other side. White, solemn, pristine, as seen through a lens softened by Vaseline – a romantic blur.
Dumbfounded, wide-eyed, and with a pair of shaky legs, he entered the realm called Heaven.
”Hi, I’m the shouting man”, said the shouting man. ”It was I, me, not you, that invited you to this holy place. Welcome! Bienvenue! ¡Bienvenido! Willkommen! Etcetera, and so forth.”
He nodded, speechless.
”Ah, the quiet type, are we?” The not so quiet man began stamping documents. He handed one of them over, pointing at a dotted line in an absent, casual, fashion. A motion of habit, of boredom, done a billion times before. ”Sign here, if you please.”
He signed, and sighed. ”Where …?”
Interrupted by harrumphing. ”Walk, or run, or jump, or crawl, I really don’t care, but turn left at Blue Clouds, follow Paradise Street, that is the main street, cross the bridge to Eden, follow the divine torches, lit just for you – yeah, right! – pass A&G, it should be on your left side, and then take the pink stairs, and enter the tower that looks like a …” The man actually blushed. ”That is, the … Well, it looks like a … You know, a male … Ah, for Heaven’s sake, you know what I mean. You can’t miss it, unless you’re a blind, imbecile baboon. Anyway, that’s where you’ll find Someone Godlike’s office. He’ll tell you everything. He might even offer you a job.”
The shouting man shook his head, and raised his voice. ”And now you’re deaf, as well as dead.” He turned his attention elsewhere, cleared his throat, and shouted even louder: ”Next!”
* * *
He found both the impressive building and the office easily enough. That after a short stop for refreshments at A&G (short for Angels & Gentlemen).
Someone Godlike’s secretary Michael announced his visit, and, after a brief telepathic dialogue between employer and employee, the big Creator himself allowed him – oh, how diminutive he felt in boss man’s omnipresence – to enter.
Angels sang a beautiful song on the radio: “… and when Death does care, the burden of life we share …”
Lord Godlike sat in his comfortable office at the top of the phallus-shaped building, draining a cup of coffee. ”So, what can I do for you, Mr He?”
He raised one eyebrow, then the other. Then both at the same time. ”What … What you can do for me?” This was Someone Godlike, asking him what he could do for the master planner, the Man (or Woman, he/she looked rather feminine at the moment – much like a Thai kathoey). “Oh, I guess … Do you have a job for me?”
Someone Godlike nodded. ”Yes, I do. I’d like you to create the world in five days.”
”Precisely. The world. Earth. Tellus. The big ball on the great pool table we refer to as universe. Do you have a problem concerning that fact?”
”Well.” He hesitated. ”It’s just that I think the Earth has already been created once. Ahem. By, you know. You. In seven, or eight days.”
”Oh. Bummer. I have to be honest with you. It was just the door, you see.”
He stood there, incredulous. ”What do you mean, Lord Godlike?”
”Look, I wasn’t feeling well, all right! Nobody believed in me, and I felt depressed. So, everything took a bit longer than it probably should have. Ergo, the fucking door alone took me seven days to build, or eight, I don’t remember. The rest of it took me like billions of years, and I still haven’t finished the damned thing.” Lord Godlike drew a deep sigh when he observed He’s perplexed expression, then stared at his empty coffee cup. ”Michael! Coffee, please! We’re gonna need lots of it.”