01 Feb I Was Dead for Six Minutes and Saw Heaven Part 3
You could have fucking told me that was going to happen!” I yelled as I felt around my sides blindly for anything to orient myself.
Without any warning the blinding light suddenly vanished and I saw something that surprised me even more than the spires of silver and angels that were taller than infinity.
“Welcome to the Second Heaven.” Daniel said.
There were people everywhere. Hundreds and hundreds of people standing around, each with their own white clothing and glowing blue cherub. All of them appeared to be waiting around for something as they stood in place silently. I looked up to find that we were in some sort of building as this place actually had a ceiling instead of open sky.
“Where the hell are we?” I asked.
Daniel sighed, “I told you. The Second Heaven. Specifically, the Material room.”
I looked around the room. Two of the walls appeared to be made of the same flawless marble the gates were made out of. Against the left wall of the massive room were a number of small pillars separate from the wall. While I was looking at the small pillars a bright light flashed on top of one of them. Where nothing had been before now was a small glowing cube just big enough that it took two hands to hold.
One of the glowing blue orbs in the crowd started bobbing in place until a silent person to it’s right looked at it. This seemed to appease the little bastard because it flew over to the glowing cube sitting on the pillar and began bobbing up and down. The man, who looked to be in his twenties and in perfect health, walked over and grabbed the cube.
“And we are here why?” I asked.
“Because I have to do my job and my job is to guide you to where you need to go. And you need to be guided through the Second Heaven. And that,” He pointed at the cube the man was holding, “is the Material. Hence, Material room.”
I looked as another flash of light lit up on another pillar, leaving behind another identical glowing cube. Another bobbing blue light led another silent person to the pillar to pick it up just as the first person was exiting the room through a corridor on the other side of the room.
“Why isn’t anyone talking?”
Daniel looked as the new person, a blonde woman, started walking to the end of the room with her glowing cube, “Follow me.”
Daniel turned and waved me towards him, “Come on before your little guy decides you’re taking too long.”
I followed him into the corridor at the end of the room.
“Are we prisoners?” I asked.
Daniel turned and looked directly at the glowing blue cherub to my left before answering, “None of us are prisoners here. We do what we do because we know our purpose here.” His meaning was clear enough by the fact he never broke eye contact with the glowing ball.
If either of us said the wrong thing then this little blue bastard would report us to the nearest Seraphim.
Daniel continued walking into the corridor and I followed. After a short walk behind a line of people carrying cubes in front of us and empty handed people heading into the room to our left we entered a massive cavern that stretched far enough that I had no estimate for how big it actually was. The ceiling was fifty feet above as we exited the corridor and entered the cavern proper. In front of us, in long ordered rows, were what looked to be marble anvils about three feet tall. Rows and columns stretched far into the distance, nearly every one occupied by a person.
As we walked in our orderly line I saw the little blue balls lead their charges away from the line and to designated anvils. In front of most of the anvils stood quiet people in identical white clothes, each with their own cubes, chiseling away with solid silver picks.
Daniel stopped and stepped into one of the aisles of anvils, “Here in manufacturing you can see the people who have been judged worthy of entering the Second Heaven making what needs to be made.”
I looked at one of the many anvils as a new arrival started work on their solid cube, “And what exactly are they making with this mysterious material?”
He looked at the chiseler as the young man started chipping away at the solid cube. The first chip that fell off lost the glow that was endemic of the rest of the cube, “Here you can see as one of the Worthy begin their work creating the chains that are important to everything we do here.”
“Chains?” The odd word didn’t seem to make sense with the glowing cubes I had seen already.
Daniel walked down the aisle until he found another chiseler. This one’s Material was no longer a cube and resembled something closer to a sphere, “Here you can see another one as it becomes closer to resembling what we need.”
I stopped, frustrated at the continued lack of answers, “Why the hell is everyone making chains? And where does everyone sleep? And shit? And just what the fuck is going on? What’s being chained?” I regretted my words almost immediately as Daniel turned around and looked at the little Cherub as it bobbed up and down in an agitated motion.
“There is no need to sleep here.” He looked at another chiseler, this one half way between a sphere and a cube, “No one becomes hungry here. There is no pain, no sickness, and no earthly need for our heavenly bodies.”
Daniel paused and looked at my left before continuing, “Now that you have seen where the chains are made, follow me to the entrance of the Third Heaven.”
I looked at my little tattle-tale. He seemed to be satisfied with Daniel’s answer as it stopped bobbing up and down and returned to its former stationary position at my left. Daniel sighed in relief and turned around to begin walking down the row. Before he could walk forward very far, however, one of the many chiselers stopped what he was doing.
The man, a young looking gent with long hair that wouldn’t look out of place in the sixties, stopped his chiseling and turned to look at us, “Why are you Guides the only one who get to talk to anyone? How is that fucking fair man?”
Daniel looked at the young man’s blue keeper. It began bobbing up and down in the same agitated motion mine had done just a minute earlier.
The hippy continued his rant, “How do they expect us to work like we do? Yeah, we don’t get tired and we never get hungry, but what’s the point of all this, huh? Is what we do really worth an infinite amount of work for all eternity?”
The young hippie’s blue ball flew off into the distance and out of sight in just a second. For the first time since meeting him I saw a true look of fear on the his face. He reached his hand out and pushed me back a foot from the hippy. At the same time every person directly surrounding him stepped away from their workplaces.
The hippy sighed, “Fuck me.”
A sudden light appeared at the top of the cavern. A bright flash and a voice made of thunder.
“You are no longer worthy of the Second Heaven.” The Seraphim said before it appeared on the ground directly in front of the hippy, enveloped him in it’s light, then disappeared in a flash through the roof of the cavern. Without leaving a mark anywhere and in less than five seconds, the man was no longer here. The chiselers that had moved away went back to their anvils and resumed their chiseling.
“Where did the Seraphim bring him?” I asked.
“To a spire in the Silver City. Now come with me to the Third Heaven.” Daniel started walking away and, with no other choice except to be carried away to a mysterious spire to never be seen again, I followed him. We passed many workers in various states of completeness on their ‘Chains’ as we walked. Quarter spheres, almost complete cubes and disks. After a minute of walking I saw what I assumed to be the final product as one of the chiselers put their tool down.
A large ring sat on top of the marble anvil. It glowed with a light much brighter than the cubes they started with. As we passed he picked up the ring and began walking just behind us, following the glowing blue light of it’s guide as it moved forward. Another ring began glowing on another anvil and another follower joined us down the aisles. By the time I could see the other end of the cavern and the corridor we were walking towards there was an orderly line of people with glowing white rings. The image would have been ridiculous if I wasn’t so terrified of attracting the attention of one of the glowing monstrosities and disappearing into a spire.
“Guides?” I asked Daniel just ahead of me. He turned his head but continued walking, “There are more than one of you?”
Daniel laughed, “Of course. You think I show six billion people around here?”
“And you’re the only ones allowed to talk?”
He looked forward and down. He answered in a whisper that I could barely hear, “Of course. How would anyone know what to do without someone telling them what’s going on and what their responsibilities are?”
I looked at my little blue ball. It seemed content with the conversation we were having, “So no one ever gets tired?”
He was right. Despite the hours of walking I’d done since we entered the wall I wasn’t even the slightest bit sore. I wasn’t thirsty. I wasn’t hungry. I felt like I could walk forever.
And something clicked.
I looked at the people on their anvils, chiseling away at their glowing cubes, and thought about if I was doing that myself.
I could work on that forever.
They could work on that forever.
I looked as the little blue balls led empty handed workers towards the Material room and people carrying glowing rings to the back of the line we were at the front of. An eternity of working in silence doing the same thing over and over again. Or a mystery fate in the spire where no one’s ever seen again. If–
“We’re here.” Daniel said.
I looked forward, my thoughts interrupted, as we approached the short corridor. At the end of it was a large wooden door, the first thing in this entire place that wasn’t made of either stone or metal, and a single man standing in front of it. I couldn’t place exactly what bothered me about him until we got a bit more through the corridor and it become obvious.
He was glowing.
Not ridiculously bright like the Seraphim and not a soft blue like the Cherubim, but a warm yellow that resonated with a sense of hope and joy. He smiled as we approached, “Guide. Have you brought me one worthy of the Third Heaven?”
Daniel took a quick look at me, “Yes.”
The man standing in front of the wooden door smiled at the little Cherub as it flew over from my side and to his. He looked at it for a moment, nodded, then looked at me and smiled.
“You are worthy of entering the Third Heaven and receiving the Truth. Do you wish to know?”
Daniel looked at me with a severe look on his face and nodded in a ‘Yes for the love of god say yes’ motion. I looked at the people behind us waiting with their glowing rings. If there was a choice besides an eternity of chiseling a cube into a ring then I would have to be an idiot not to take it.