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"Before I Wake."

The following story is fiction. If I am very fortunate, it may very well also be true.




It is told in memory of Mackenzie F, 1986-2002.


The soul, having only just come to grips with its body's sudden demise, took a long look at its new environs.


Red, it thought.


Darkness. Fire.



Of course.


Having long ago resigned itself to the possibility of this outcome, the soul moved slowly into the streaming mass of former humanity inexorably making its way towards the Great Gate.


Looking only downwards, it paid no real attention to its surroundings -- until a giant sword descended from the sky to block its path.


Stopping just short of the blade, the soul looked upwards into the eyes of a gigantic angel who seemed to be glaring down at him. "You. Do Not Pass." it said, and there was clearly no arguing with it. "Wait."


The soul moved off to the side and the throng moved on. As it stood, it wondered what it could have done wrong enough to merit special attention, and just what inventive extra punishment it was to receive before its final condemnation. It knew that it hadn't lived the best life it could have, and that it had always managed to slip back to old bad habits after every attempt to reform, even the sincere ones.


Still, while it had occasionally been awfully selfish, foolish, arrogant and worse, and had accepted the consequences of its actions, it really, deep down, didn't think that it had done anything that bad.


It's just been, the soul thought ironically, one of those lives.


Then it noticed the little ball of light. The light was small, very bright, and heading rapidly in the soul's direction. In moments, the ball was practically upon him. The ball circled the soul three times at just about the level of his knees, then backed off, rising up to eye level, where it hovered, wavering slightly.


"Hi!" it said. "It's good to see you!"


It is? the soul thought, but responded, carefully, "Hello. What're you?"


"I'm a... sort of a guide, sort of a guardian," the ball of light said. "They sent me to fetch you." It giggled at something. "It was close, mind, but... you don't have to go. You got in."


"I got... IN? But I thought..."


"Yeah, I know what you thought. That was the hard part. See, souls like you, on the borderline, sometimes they think they deserve worse than they really do, and that bad self image can camoflauge you against Heaven's radar, so to speak, make you look like any other damned soul. But you're not, not really. We almost missed you, though. Lucky there's been a few folks been looking out for you."


"I don't understand. I mean, sometimes I was pretty... pretty bad."


"Hey, I won't deny you had your problems, but you weren't as bad as you could have been. You managed to meet your Destiny, and that's something, even if your Fate nearly came along for the ride."


"I met my Destiny? ME?? What did I ever do that was noteworthy??


"Hey, we don't all have huge, save-the-world Destinies, you know. I didn't. My Destiny was just to be there for someone who needed me. You? Well, I suppose that depends on persepective, but I can tell you that from my point of view, you did more than enough. That's why I asked for this job."


"What'd I do?"


"You, my friend, single-handedly kept no less than three souls from their fates."


"You're kidding."


"We don't kid here, pal. Not about this. Start with your grandmother. After your grandfather died, she was all alone in that house. Your aunt was gone, your brother was being a kid, and your parents... well, we both know your parents were never very good at that sort of thing.


But you, you stopped in every day with the mail and stayed and talked with her for the hour or so before your parents got home from work. Every day. For years."


"But.. we barely understood each other! I didn't know a thing about her old friends, I couldn't reminisce about the old days, and all I ever talked about was outer space and high technology... to a Depression-era girl!"


"Doesn't matter. It was the companionship that did it. Your sacrifice of your 'me time' kept her from a Fate of lonelines and despair, from dying much sooner than she did, uncomforted and alone."


"Oh, my. She's... up there, then?"


"Of course! With her friends and family again, and helping out part time with the Archangel of Children -- once a teacher, you know..."


"Oh, that's wonderful!" the soul said, relaxing for the first time. "But, you said there were three?"


"Yes. Another was the love of your life. I don't have to tell you just what happened there. You know it in your heart."


The soul closed its eyes, remembering. "I loved her."


"Yes. And after the years of abuse, and lies, and pain she'd endured... you were there. You tried. You cared."


"I screwed it up."


"Sometimes. But the thing is, she loved you back. She still does."


"Ohno. Is she-"


"No. No, not yet. Someday, though. But she's out of danger now. She's loved and been loved. And when she does get here, well, there's a joint Protection / Children Intervention strike team just waiting for her."


"Oh, she'll like that. Protecting children. Smiting those who are cruel to them. Finally, she might get a little justice."




"...and the third?"


"Ah. Well, this may seem a bit odd, but, well... it's me."


"Wait, wait, wait. I know I did a lot of things in my life, but I'm sure I never served a ball of light."


"Oh, but you did. You never saw me like this, but you always used to say how I was a 'living ball of energy,' so I thought I'd actually greet you as one. You'll know me better in a moment." The ball of light started to drift towards the ground. "You saved me, saved my life, when I was only days old. You chose me, took me home, and made me yours. And you were always my best friend, until the day I died. You were the only father I ever knew."


"I don't under--"


And the ball of light reached the ground, dimmed, shifted shape, grew four small legs and fur, was a tiny, grey-and-black schnauzer.


"My God," said the soul , tears suddenly streaming down its face. "Mac."


"Yes," the dog said, and wagged his little tail.




"Your parents may have bought me, but you loved me. And I have always been your dog. Welcome home."


The end.

He just kept talking and talking in one long incredibly unbroken sentence moving from topic to topic so that no one had a chance to interrupt it was really quite hypnotic...

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Okay, comment. Marvel in wonder and confusion at the atheist who writes about angels and hope and stuff. :D

He just kept talking and talking in one long incredibly unbroken sentence moving from topic to topic so that no one had a chance to interrupt it was really quite hypnotic...

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Touching story. :)

Feel free to PM me about almost anything and I'll do my best to answer. :)


"Beware of what you ask for, for it may come to pass..."

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interesting story lad. incredibly something similar happend to me (regarding the dead), but im still alive... wait... am i?


can i post another story here?

[82nd] Mr. Kochi Bracegirlde: You just blow that fife

[82nd] Mr. Kochi Bracegirlde: the 'if ye know what i mean' aside

Hooper: want to give your men a fast reload? BLOW ME FIRST

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I don't know but I think there should be a topic hear were we can Post stores and ideas for criticism to help us become better writers

Serious Topic Section.

"When a son is born, the father will go up to the newborn baby, sword in hand; throwing it down, he says, "I shall not leave you with any property: You have only what you can provide with this weapon."

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