Saturday, April 6, 2013

Page 1 -- I.

((Note to new readers: If you find the text too small or otherwise hard on the eyes, try zooming in with your web browser. Or, if you'd rather read the story in e-book format, you can download the first three story arcs [290 pages on this site] for free over at Smashwords or Amazon.))


Chapter One: ‘O, benevolent darkness...!’
Click to display entire chapter at once -- (mobile link)

“Hello there, friend.”

“...Where am I? What’s happening?”

“Easy now. Don’t panic. Everything’s alright.”

“...What’s going on? Why can’t I see anything?”

“I’m going to tell you, but I need you to listen. I promise to answer all of your questions, so just try to stay calm, okay?”

“...O-okay.”

“Listen. You’re dead.”

“...What?”

“You’re dead. You don’t have a physical body, anymore. That’s why you can’t see or move.”

“...What kind of crazy joke is this?”

“I’m sorry, friend, but I’m not joking. If I were joking, you’d be laughing. I’m hilarious.”

“What the...?”

“Just relax a moment and think about it. You should remember your death.”

“But... I...”

“Do you remember?”

“I... yes... I remember... I...”

“Don’t worry. It’s alright. I was there when you died. I know what happened.”

“I’m... really dead?”

“Yes.”

“...Does that mean... this is... some kind of afterlife?”

“Not quite. You haven’t reached that point, yet.”

“...What do you mean? Why not? Is it... because I...?”

“No, it’s nothing like that. Everything is perfectly normal. I just woke you up a little early, is all. Because before you move on, I have a proposition for you.”

“Proposition...? Who are you?”

“I’m called a few different things, but you’d probably know me best as a reaper. You know. The grim kind.”

“The hell...?”

“I guide and protect souls as they make the journey into the afterlife. Or oblivion. Whichever.”

“You... don’t know?”

“Sure don’t. I’m just a ferryman.”

“Oh... that’s... disappointing...”

“Hey. It bothers me, too. In fact, shut up about it. I don’t need you reminding me of my shortcomings.”

“Uh, sorry...”

22 comments:

  1. Mmmm, interesting start, but the logic at the end seems a bit weak. Were you the Grim Reaper (or one of many, which makes much more sense) would you really worry that you were ferrying people to oblivion? I mean, if they're not actually going somewhere, why provide a guide? Clearly, the reaper has been provided to ensure passage to another realm. I would think this more a comfort than a concern. Sure, you don't know whether you're passing them to a heaven, a hell, or a purgatory, but you can shrug that off as "judgment's not in the job description; someone else handles that up the line."

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    1. Actually, that isn't the case for this story.

      I'll offer you a minor spoiler here, so please beware. The reaper community (as there is more than one) is very much NOT clear on whether an afterlife exists, and in fact, this is a matter of much contention for them.

      As for why "guides" are necessary, this is a plot point that I've yet to get around to, but I'll go ahead and answer this. Reapers choose to act as guides for numerous reasons, but the primary one is simply because a soul that is left alone decays over time into an agonizing prison of semi-consciousness.

      Also, this is only the first page. Perhaps you didn't realize that there's about 170 more pages already posted?

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  2. Fascinating... Need to read more :)

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  3. Thanks, and I hope you do.

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  4. I love the dialogue already. One of my readers mentioned this story in the comments of my serial, and I'm so glad he did. I'll definitely be reading more!

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  5. Oh my, thank you. That is delightful to hear.

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  6. Just wanted to say that I find this story to be a very good read. I am currently at the start of chapter two, and I had to drag myself away from it to post this. Keep up the good work!

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  7. Thank you very much. I'm glad you're enjoying. :)

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  8. well after one page i can already tell i'm going to lone this.

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  9. Haha, aww.

    Don't be so positive. There are still plenty of chances left for you to start hating it. :)

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  10. nope too late i'm 27 pages in and i still love your writing style, so keep up the great work :)

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  11. Nice dialogue and interesting start. However I have to ask, if he can't see cause he's dead...how is he able to hear and speak? That didn't quite make sense to me but whatever. On to the next part!

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  12. Now this is an impressive beginning.

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  13. So... it has been FOREVER. Sorry bout that. There is so much more that's new, though. Gonna take me a while to catch up. Definitely gonna be worth it, though.

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  14. :0 loving it

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  15. Mahdi AparentylycntsayawsomJune 14, 2015 at 7:16 PM

    Rereading a masterpiece for the second time
    Hello Rookies, call me...hmm
    I'll be in your care
    I'll be in your care

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