I’ve been a writer for a while now; I’ve written a bunch of stories and articles I published in various small-time magazines and outlets. So, you’ve probably never heard of my works. Writing was a hobby more than anything and whatever profit I could make of it was just a bonus for my full-time job. One key theme in my writing was my faith, my religion, my relationship with God. As weird as it may sound, that was one reason my stories attracted people. I think there’s too much cynicism in the world right now; that led people to seek something less harsh and critical and some found it in my stories.
I wish I could say I’m the same pure-hearted person still, but the sad truth is that I am not. The less you know the better you sleep is the truest statement of them all. What I’m about to say will come off extremely ironic; I became an Atheist because I’ve conversed with God.
I’m pretty sure people will say that I’ve had a near death experience and that these are just a dream-like state that the world creates to maintain calm in the final moments of life in the absence of oxygen. That does not apply to me; I was never brain-dead. Admittedly, I was involved in an accident. A tired SUV driver hit me with his vehicle, and I vividly remember the sight of his front lights blinding me before I felt a sharp pain in my back, one I could only describe as being hit in the back with a huge weight followed by a feeling of a hot knife being lodged and twisted into the middle of my lumbar region. Everything went black for a moment, and I came to shortly after, I found myself surrounded by medical staff and the tired driver was standing by my side begging for me to be all right and wholeheartedly apologizing for what he had done.
Now I would have no reason to write this down if I just had blacked out and came to, in these few minutes that I was out of it a hell-of-a-lot happened somewhere. Definitely not in my head. It wasn’t a dream for sure.
The doctors told me I was lucky to come out of the whole ordeal with a few herniated discs in my spine; supposedly the way they found me is usually how they find people with fully severed spinal canals. So, there was definitely more than luck involved in there.
After everything went black, after the initial impact. I found myself laying on some plastic like surface surrounded by complete and utter darkness. I was confused about what was happening, so I tried getting up to my feet. Couldn’t feel my legs, however, so I called out, I guess on impulse, “Uhh, hello?”
A thumping sound echoed in the distance and suddenly the whole place was illuminated from above.
“Help me… I can’t feel my legs.” I called out again, confused and panicking.
I looked around me, and I couldn’t see anything, there was nothing but an endless whitely illuminated room. Completely nothing.
“Help! Help me! Help me; I need help!” I screamed out, hoping someone might hear me where ever I was.
That’s when a loud booming voice that sounded like a chorus of people called out from above, “Stand up.”
The sudden appearance of the voice shook me. Thoughts swirled in my head like a tornado. I was beginning to think I might have died and passed on to the next world. Despite being what I’d consider a genuinely good Christian; I was afraid of divine judgments.
“I-I can’t…” I mumbled, “I can’t… feel my legs…”
“Stand up,” the booming choir called out again and a wave of relief washed all over me.
I’ve regained feeling in my legs, and I got up to my feet.
“Walk towards the gates.” The booming voice echoed from behind me.
“What Gat…” I tried saying as I turned around to try to identify the source of the speech.
A brightly luminescent thing floated behind me. The moment I laid eyes on this thing, I felt as if something was squeezing my head with a vise-like grip. I felt the whole place spinning around me, and I began having what I can describe as an out-of-body experience, almost. The pain was so unbearable I felt as if it was the only thing in existence for me. It took over everything. Like someone had stabbed all of my pain receptors with burning needles. I felt myself screaming in pain, but like I was looking at myself screaming more than anything.
Suddenly the pain became so bad I was feeling myself blacking out, but before everything went dark again. I managed to make out the details of this thing before it. It looked like some human-faced winged lion engulfed in a fire with eyes covering the entirety of its wings.
When I came to, I was lying in the same white room and I could hear someone else talking this new speaker; it sounded far more human than the previous.
“You should’ve warned him not to look at you. These humans are so fragile, Laviel. You know that all too well. You’ve to be careful with them. Good thing I fixed him before it was too late. It’s not his time yet.”
The booming-voiced beast thing remained silent throughout the whole time. Moreover, the conversation reinforced my idea of me being dead. It was confusing but the last part was confusing even more than the rest. Considering I thought myself dead, it appeared ridiculous to say that this being would say that “it’s not my time yet”. Fearful of damnation I decided to turn to where I thought the second voice was coming from and ask what it meant.
I wanted answers so bad I didn’t think straight, that and probably having my brains roasted for a moment.
Turning was an even bigger mistake.
I saw this ball of color changing lights. It was like a disco ball in the middle of a crazy rave. The second I laid my eyes on that; I felt my body going hot. It started off as a warm fuzzy feeling and it gradually increased to the point where it became painful. I screamed in pain and rolling around, I think at least, that I was rolling around. With each passing moment, the heat became more and more painful. I could feel my skin peeling off my muscles and my muscles molting away into a gooey liquid. My eyes burned so bad I couldn’t see straight but I’m sure I caught a glimpse of my arm actually melting, but I’m not really sure.
It had gotten so bad I could feel each and every bone in my body crackling because of the heat. Like I felt my bones breaking from within me. That’s when everything came to an abrupt end.
It was all just black.
Sometime later that, I woke up on a comfortable leather couch. “Uhh, what’s going on,” I groaned as I opened my eyes to find myself laying in this beautiful library. There were bookshelves staffed with literature as far as my eyes could see.
My head felt heavy and my ears were ringing as I shifted my body to a sitting position.
Then that human voice from before spoke again, “Oh, you’re finally up… Sorry about that… I sometimes forget my own rules… Sorry about Laviel too, angels can be dense sometimes”
“Uhh what? Angels? What are you talking about?” I said, rubbing my eyes.
“You know, the whole you cannot see my face, for no one can see my face and live thing,” the voice said.
“What?” I asked, confused.
I looked up, the ringing in my ears and the heaviness faded from my head, and I saw some sort droopy looking humanoid lizard thing sitting in front of me. Dressed in a shower robe and smoking a pipe.
“What the hell?” I groaned.
“Thought I might make this entertaining to keep the situation light around you” the lizard spoke.
“Uhh what, who are you? Where am I?” I asked.
“Stay seated. I might knock you off your feet.” He creature boasted.
“I’m God, but you can call me Rob… Yeah, let’s go with Rob!” the thing said.
Its words hit me like a truck, I felt myself straighten up as my muscles tensed, “No way… This is nuts…”
The thing waved its hand in the air and suddenly a hologram-like thing appeared before me. It was this dark little sphere with nothing inside.
“What’s this?” I enquired.
“Just watch…” the thing said as its body was shifting its shape like some sort of video game chameleon-like character.
An explosion occurred inside of the hologram, in a moment’s notice that there was a sea of lights and after that. Things were beginning to shape out of that sea of lights. It was the beginning of the universe, my universe.
He cut me short, “Yes, that’s the beginning of your universe.” The creature spoke, now looking like a gigantic octopus-like thing whose limbs were flailing about.
The realization sunk in; I was in the presence of God. I fell to my knees and begged for forgiveness over my disrespect.
“Oh, come on! It’s all right, I would’ve done the same. Questioning things is always good. I was never the type for this groveling. It’s weird. Sometimes you humans get really disturbing with this, throwing yourself at my feet and what not. Eugh.”
I got back up to my feet; I was shaking with fear at this point, I don’t even know why. God seemed pretty calm and hospitable towards me; I guess it’s the presence of the creator of everything that drove me to fear, that was, after all what the church instilled in me, to fear God.
“Relax,” he said changing his appearance to that of a gelatinous thing with a head.
I tried to recollect myself, but it was too nerve-wracking, I couldn’t stop shaking.
“Well then, now that we have established this, how are you feeling?” God asked me.
“Sca… scared… confu…sed… I don’t know… I don’t know what to…” I slurred.
“Don’t be, it’s fine.”
“All of this is so… I don’t know… weird… Am I dead?” I questioned, swallowing my saliva as I expected the harsh truth to smack me right across the face like a sledgehammer.
“No. You are not, not even close, you’re pretty alive. Just knocked out.”
In a moment of both relief and confusion, I felt a smile form on my face, but the tension only got worse. Thoughts were spinning once more like a tornado. Why would God seek my audience? I wasn’t a man of any importance.
He cut me off again, “Why are you here? You’re a writer. I’m a writer and It’s been about fourteen hundred years since I’ve spoken to one of you directly.”
“A writer?” This was getting more and more confusing with each passing moment.
“Yeah, I consider myself a playwright if I’m being honest… Everything I’ve created is part of my grand spectacle called ‘The Epic of the Multiverse,’” he called out raising his wings into the air.
I need to mention that he kept on changing his shape every few moments, some of them I can’t even put into words.
“Yeah… You didn’t think Quantum Mechanics would allow more than one universe? I mean… that would be dull…” he responded.
“Yeah… boring… simple as that.” He retorted, with a weirdly alarming calmness in his tone.
“I don’t get it, God…”
“Rob, call me Rob.” He cut me off.
“Alright, Rob, I don’t get it, what does it have to do with boredom?” I asked, albeit somewhat fearfully.
“Oh, yeah, there’s isn’t much of a purpose to all of this.” He said as if it was an off-handed remark.
“Yeah… unexpected doesn’t even cut it…”
But it all started making sense then, I mean, it’s not that hard to see that God was a lonely, borderline psychotic super being that just wanted to ease his mental anguish. I think that’s something religions don’t account for. If we need stimulation with our massive brains, imagine what God’s supercomputer of an all-capable “brain” would go through without having something to wrap itself around.
“Well yeah, religions don’t quite get it right. I think that’s why I like you the most, your reality that is. It’s so chaotic, it’s so full of possibilities… It’s all so colorful. I really like how you can be the most productive little things ever one moment and then try to end the lives of one another over a bottle of milk! That is just rich… that is thrilling. Life in your universe is like the greatest play ever!”
These words hit me really hard.
God kept on going, “And don’t you think you’re the only ones out there or the only ones as exciting as you are. Some species, they’ve wiped out whole planets.”
I could see he was almost salivating himself at the prospect of seeing holocausts unfold.
“So, what’s the deal then, we just live and die and then what?” I asked as I was beginning to doubt if I wanted to know the answer.
“And then nothing, there’s no heaven or hell or whatever… You have one shot at life and that’s it.” He said, “I hope I’m not disappointing you too much.”
He didn’t disappoint me, no. Much to my surprise, it somewhat relieved me knowing that there is no afterlife at this point. Five minutes with God and Christianity sounds like a really silly set of ideas.
“You know, I don’t really care what you do as long as you don’t become boring and still with your lives.” He continued.
Now that; that pissed me off… I felt like I was a toy and for someone who was part of a religion whose members considered themselves to be the pawns of God, the literal feeling of being used my whole life. That set me off.
“So, what are we, just toys to be used and discarded?” I barked.
I guess it took him by surprise that I had raised my voice; he cocked back, now donning a human form.
“No, not you humans, you… you are special… You bring me so much joy…” he began saying before I cut him off.
“By being what? By being stage actors in a tiny part of a cosmic play. We live for you; we die for you. People die for you. Endlessly. Do you even know how much blood people shed in your name and everything for what? The sake of your entertainment?” I rose from the couch screaming at him.
“Do you know how hard it is to be consumed by nothingness, you hairless ape? Do you? You cannot even begin to fathom the pain I had to endure before creation” God yelled back at me making the whole place around us shake as if there was an earthquake.
I felt my heart sink to my heels, but I couldn’t back down.
“So, does this mean you can just let people die?” I screamed back, this time more out of fear than anger.
God outstretched his neck to me, pushing me back to my seat by covering the distance between us. His head stopped mere inches from mine, and he whispered. “Do not overstep your boundaries.”
Something about him whispering sounded even more terrifying than his ground-shaking screaming so I sank into the couch. He pulled his head back and forced a smile.
“And besides, I also enjoy all the good that’s been done in your universe. I mean, your architecture is great but there’s this one planet called Qoongekrl, where they make these things what I would consider heavenly. Absolutely stunning.” He said calmly.
I turned my head from side to side in disgust and God just sat there, staring at me. His eyes, they weren’t piercing or anything. If I had to describe his gaze, it appeared to be off… Like he was wondering to other places inside his own head.
That’s when I realized he had the eyes of a madman.
I set there in silence for a few moments considering my options; I don’t know why but I just decided to ask him to return me to my life.
“I want to go back,” I demanded sternly.
His gaze focused on me, for the first time in the whole conversation, “so soon?”
“Yeah… You’ve nothing of note to tell me, not to mention that you probably have already planned my horrible death following this…” saying this I got back to my feet.
“No… I didn’t.”
The next thing he said rattled me to the core; it was probably the worst thing he could tell me; “I do know how each possible life route ends for you. Some of them end really bad… Along the lines of being dumped in a ditch to have your corpse torn apart by animals after mind shattering torture.”
I thought about flipping him off, but I reconsidered, not wanting to piss every last ounce of him. So instead, I smiled and said, “You’d love that!”
“Haha! Now you’re getting it! I love it all the peace and the joy, along with the gore and the screams! Good Good!”
“Hah” is all I could react with before I found myself laying on the side of the road.
Now, that encounter with God made me lose all faith in him. I know he exists but I don’t believe in him. In the past I thought to live all alone as an intelligent species would be terrifying, now I know that living in a reality controlled by a mad puppet master is what should fuel our nightmares.