For a brief moment, my escape attempt felt glorious and pure. I was whooping and hollering. Screaming and shouting. I felt alive for the first time since I died, and it was miraculous.
“For freedom, I flee this awful bureaucracy!” I chanted at one point.
But as I said, the moment was brief. As I galloped through the darkness of purgatory towards a speck of light around a slightly ajar door, I heard flapping wings from all directions closing in around me. It was those damn guardian angels, which, contrary to popular belief, guard the Heavenly fat-cats from the lost labor that arises when an employee goes AWOL — among other duties.
Anyway, in the end it took 12 angels, each with a 20-foot wingspan and lots of muscles to subdue me, though in my defense it wasn’t a fair fight. Whoever told me it was against their religion to be violent was either lying or terribly misinformed, as I was quickly swarmed and bludgeoned repeatedly by those brutes. They pounded every inch of me, paying particular attention to my noggin, and eventually knocked me out.
For my crime — and I’m told it was a crime — I’ve been put under house arrest for one week, and not given anything to suppress my massive headache.
To ensure I got home and stayed there, the most barbaric angel, Clarence, escorted me to my apartment and now stands on 24-hour watch outside my door. The most frightening thing about Clarence is that he prefers to work in the nude and always leaves his wings outstretched. I’m not sure why, but I think it’s his way of proving that what they say about a guy’s wingspan is true.
Being terribly out-manned, so to speak, and very sore, I decided it was better to just accept my punishment. To pass the time, I used my viewing monitor to spy on life forms still trapped in physical reality. It’s the only permitted style of broadcast here in Heaven. Fortunately, there are millions of channels. One channel for each inhabited planet in the physical universe, and one camera for each life form on that planet. You can watch whatever camera in the universe you want, needing only to think about what you want to view to have it appear.
Yesterday, I spent six hours watching a blade of grass in a meadow on Fridean-6, as I plotted how to make the entire physical world pass quickly onto this side of reality and end my contract. Coming to no plausible solution, I then spent a few awkward minutes watching two beavers go at it on Earth. Having already spent three days watching beavers, I’ve learned a few things. For instance, a female beaver can be in heat for up to 12 hours! Yet instead of having what anyone would consider a really wild day, she remains monogamous. So that’s nice, if not a little naïve.
I suppose this means I’m a nature nut. Though I suspect it has more to do with the fact that once a creature gets too “intelligent” things get complicated, and I don’t have the time to follow, never mind figure out, what the hell is going on inside their heads. All I know is that intelligence seems to counteract happiness in some bizarre ways.
The most intelligent, yet depraved and disturbed species in physical reality is the Migen of Morg. Ten times more intelligent than a human, which I was in life; the Migen spend all their efforts building smaller worlds that will praise them, entertain them and, of course, fulfill all their carnal desires. Yet there has not been a single Migen in a million years that hasn’t committed suicide. They’ve managed to have all their desires fulfilled, and yet none of them are happy. For the first time in a long time, I feel a little better about the pomp and circumstance up here in Heaven. It keeps people from thinking about themselves too much. Well, mostly.
“I got to get out of here!” I blurted suddenly.
Clarence laughed at me from the other side of the door. “And where will you go? There is no other place but this once you’re dead. Heaven is all there is from one end of the universe to the next.”
“Bullshit! That’s just what we’re told to keep us obedient!”
Clarence chuckled, “Whatever you say, Sam.”
I made for the window, but before I could get one leg out, Clarence burst into the apartment and dragged me back in. He then proceeded to tie me to a chair.
Back to watching beavers in heat, I guess. It could be worse.