[Original Novella] Everybody Comes Back, Part 6 (the finale!)


Previous parts: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5

I won’t say it doesn’t also have the capacity to feel anger, or any other negative emotion. It would be incomplete if it lacked those emotional dimensions. But I will say it’s much less of a shithead than any human, mostly because of how much smarter it is.”

How do you like that, I thought. God is a nice fellow after all. Lucky for us little people, because if it wasn’t…I shuddered to think of it. Nothing at all guaranteed I would wake up after I died in the first place. Much less that I would wake up in a utopian playground instead of a torture pit.

“Human civilizations underwent their own evolution towards cooperation and magnanimity for some simple, pragmatic reasons familiar to any game theorist. Cooperative civilizations always prevail over antisocial, belligerent ones. Sometimes they lose the battle, but they eventually win the war.”

It was my turn to smile. Mostly because of how irritatingly wholesome it was to discover that the good guys really do come out on top in the end, and stay there forever. Not without literal eons of struggle, and not without a steep cost…but everybody who died fighting the good fight doesn’t stay dead. Nothing lasts, but nothing is lost.

I got up, and told the two of them I was ready to go. They seemed surprised. “We’re just wasting time standing here, flapping our gums. I want to go seek out everybody I left behind. Her most of all! I want…I want to see her face again. I want to touch her face, and apologize for everything.”

They patted me on the back. “No need. She already knows everything you might say. Besides, she’s no longer the woman you remember. You won’t be yourself either, not when we’re done with you. When you said you’d go through Hell for her, I sure hope you meant it.”

I followed them down a hallway. The three of us passed a man and a woman wearing the same stately white uniforms. “As it ever was” the bald man said to one of them. “As ever” she replied. Soon we arrived at a featureless spherical chamber. When I stepped into it, I found myself floating effortlessly in the absence of gravity.

I grit my teeth as the door slid shut, engulfing me in darkness. Alone with my thoughts, but not for long. I pictured her gently smiling face for comfort as I readied myself. “Alright assholes” I grumbled. “Let ‘er rip.”

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