BY KEVIN YEE
I died today. It wasn’t quite what I expected. I’m not saying it was a pleasant experience, just not wholly unpleasant. Shocking, but not a lot of pain involved, really. Heaven isn’t what I expected either. It’s a little too- Hold on! I’m telling this backwards, aren’t I? The story starts before I died, doesn’t it?
When I woke up, I wasn’t expecting to die, not really. I mean, I always knew that I was going to die, just not today. I had this blinding headache, excruciating is the word. Every few seconds, it felt like one of those circus strong men would take a sledgehammer to my brain. That sort of pain. I didn’t have any Tylenol or Aspirin, so I decided to watch my fridge and see what happens.
After a few hours -or maybe only five minutes, I lost track of time- I realized that nothing interesting was on. That was when the six men burst through my kitchen door. They were dressed all in white, from the shoes to the coats. They were all burly too, looking like they spent their days cutting down trees in the forests. I had always known they would come for me, someday. They had come for my father and his father too. Just last week, they had caught my uncle. Or maybe it was last month, or last year? I don’t remember.
They moved towards me, coming around the counter that was between us, three on each side. I bolted, running for my life. They had come to take away my life, my freedom. I wouldn’t let them. I let out a yell and ran through the house. They wouldn’t catch me. I would get outside, and I would be free! I burst through my front door, into the open. The sun wasn’t yellow, it was chicken, but that didn’t bother me too much.
I ran through the neighborhood. They were just behind me; I could hear their yells and footsteps. I looked back over my shoulder and saw they were nearly at me. Suddenly, thin arms encircled me and fingers scratched my body. I thrashed against my captor, but it was no use. I was entangled. I couldn’t believe who it was! My friend, Mulberry, had betrayed me. The bastard held me until the men in white caught up. They put their arms around me, tied me up like a damn animal.
They dragged me along with them into an unmarked van. I fought them, yelling and kicking, but they forced me into the back. Four of them climbed in with me, holding me down. The van started up, drove me away from my house, to my grave. Left, then right, another left. I lost track of where we were going, until the van stopped. They dragged me out again, across a lawn, through large wooden doors, down long hallways. The hallways were all white, lit wickedly with fluorescent lights.
They dragged me into a room and tied me down to a chair. I still struggled, kicking out with my legs. My foot connected and one of the brutes howled in pain, clutching at his ankle. It was madness; I was at the center of a white maelstrom, a storm of limbs and of yells. Eventually, they killed me. They injected me with a needle, filled with some sort of poison. It worked fast, my sight dimming, my kicks slowing, until eventually the blackness of death surrounded me.
I went to Heaven today. It was very far from what I expected. I have a few complaints. My arms. I wish I could move them, for one thing. Another complaint. Lumberjacks always seem to be watching me. Angelic lumberjacks, though, robed in white, so I guess that’s okay. Did I mention the walls? I really like the walls. They’re nice and padded, just like pillows.