I find myself being in front of the two gates from “The other side”, I look on my right and see the angel smiling, the angel that just explained to me that the first door is “Heaven” and the second one is “Hell”.
“Have you decided yet?” he asks with kind of a British accent while looking down at his sparkly shoes.
“Looks like it’s diamond.” I say while pointing at them, “It’s actually good deeds…So?”.
I gasp and look at the two doors, what do I really deserve? The first door, from gold with flowers all around, I clear my throat and say
“I’m allergic to pollen”
“The flowers are fake, decoration, God asked for them”.
I look back at the doors, the door to Hell looks kind of dusty and used by the many hands opening it, I think other people really knew where they deserved to go, but I don’t. I mean, I maybe deserve hell but sounds like a stupid decision to make.
“Can I have more time for thinking?”
The angel looks behind me and says:
“I mean…there are already some people in line so you better step aside and ask that demon for help.”
I look left and see the demon, he smiles and waves at me, seems friendly so I go.
“The angel…” he stops me before I can finish my sentence.
“Yes, I know, He sends all the ones that can’t choose to me. Let me help you.”.
He tells me to take his hand, I feel doubt for a second but want could go wrong? I’m already dead after all, I take his hand and we start a trip.
“Now, this is the day you were born.” the demon says.
He keeps showing me different memories from the moment I was born until I died. All the images rolled in my head like a dream, when I open my eyes, he is in front of me and asks with a very serious face.
“Do you know what to choose now?
I take a step back and think of what I saw, was I a good enough man to deserve heaven or bad enough to deserve hell? I look back at the demon and say:
“I still don’t think I can choose.”, he looks down at his red shoes.
“I can give you a little trip to hell” he scratches his neck and looks back at his shoes.
“Looks like it’s ruby,” I say while pointing at the shoes.
“It’s actually from sins, “Oh…” I say feeling like the stupidest man, I should’ve known.
“Maybe a trip to hell can help me decide once in for all.”
“It might, but a trip to hell means also a trip to heaven, so you have to be careful, chose what you deserve, not what you want.”
I nod and take his hand. He opens the door and we enter.
“It’s really hot in here,” – I say when I feel the hottest wave hit my face – “Is it because of the fire?”
He starts laughing “No, it’s summer here, like on earth.”.
I decide to just keep my mouth shut if I don’t want to make a fool out of me, and let him actually present me hell. He tells how everyone who ends up in hell stays in a room or a little place they want and lives repeatedly the worst sins of their life until they feel sorry.
“What after that? After they feel sorry?”
“After that, they only watch one sin a day, after that day they got a week to create a new script of what went wrong in their life so it will not end doing that sin again. That happens until all sins are cleared and their soul is free, they can choose if they want heaven or to let their soul disappear.”
I am so shocked because everything I ever heard of hell was wrong.
“Can they choose to send their soul back on earth? In another body or I don’t know…”
He looks at me with an impressed face, nods a “Yes” and says:
“Yes, they can. Thank you for asking because I forgot to mention it, not most of them chose that so I tend to forget about that choice.”
As we get out of hell the angel comes, smiles and says:
“I guess it’s my turn now”, he takes my hand and we walk through the gate.
Another hot wave hits me but this time I don’t say anything. The angel shows me people in gardens, or houses or castles, with their family or alone, he explains to me that everyone here gets what they want, a beautiful house, time alone, a beautiful garden or just peace. Every person has a limited space where they can do one of those things.
“Can they unite two places if they want to stay together?”
“Depends on how many people, we have families of 10 that want to stay together forever so we have to give them more.”
He continues by showing me some little places, I can see a girl that has a little house in a wood, and paints in her garden.
“Can they see each other? From a place to the other?”
The angel nods a “No” and we get out of heaven.
“I am afraid you have to choose now.” says the angel.
“I know…and I think I will choose hell, there are sins I want to be repaired, sins I have to feel again to understand things about myself and the world I lived in.”
The demon comes closer to me and gives me a rusty key.
“Think about how would you like the room you will stay in, when I open the hell door, another door will be there and you will open it with the key I gave you, the room will be as you wanted it.”
“Thank you both.”
I take a deep breath and go towards the door, see the other door and I look behind, the door behind disappears, “I can’t go back” I whisper for myself. I open the other door and a beautiful house appeared, with a dog, a cat playing and a typewriter on a table.
I look around really confused “I think you guys made a mistake, this is my dream life, this is heaven.” I stay in place for several seconds until I hear the demon’s voice “I told you to choose what you deserve, not what you want.”
Prompt idea from Reedsy.