Tag Archives: sadism

180. Limbo

Limbo was not randomly named, Andrew discovered when he followed the bright light after his coronary ruptured.

It turned out no-one went straight to heaven and no-one went straight to hell. Everyone simply had to queue in the afterlife until you reached a horizontal bar that hovered a certain distance above the ground. The more virtuous a life you had led, the higher the bar hovered.

If you could successfully limbo dance your way under it, heaven awaited. If you failed to do so, it was hell for eternity.

The lady two places in front of Andrew had trotted the world for fifty years, aiding hurricane victims and earthquake survivors. She was able to basically walk upright towards paradise. But the guy after her, a glib businessman that had always favoured fortune over friendship, was faced with a bar that stood but a few inches high. Damning his fate, he hopped to hell.

Andrew’s bar hovered somewhere in between. Not low enough to immediately lose faith, but certainly not high enough to make his crossing a cakewalk. It seemed about right. In his younger years he had been an adulterer, a schemer and, occasionally, a thief. But after he’d settled down with the love of his life and produced some cute children, he had seen the error of his ways and sort of made amends. Though not quite enough in the eyes of the Lord, it seemed.

So Andrew, at 75 years of age, bent his knees, arched his creaky back and duck-stepped towards the bar.

Even if I achieve paradise, he thought, my back is going to ache for eternity.

The Lord, it appeared, had acerbic wit.

 

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