Monday, 9 March 2015

The Abstraction of Heaven and Earth

Chuck's prompt was late this time around.  However, not a disappointment.  He gave us a list of sentences and asked us to pick on and put it into a flash fiction of 1,000 words then post it... my sentence is: 'Abstraction is often one floor above you'.

I couldn’t believe it. 

I had made it here without detection.

Heaven that is…

I had made it beyond those famous gates, through the quad into the famous time-keeper’s rooms without anyone knowing I was here.

Okay.  I’ll tell you why I’m so stunned.  I’m not dead.  I haven’t left the mortal coil.  I’m still connected to Earth – and they know it! – and I’m here to search out somebody.
The clock ticked to my left.  And there was a huge, empty, cavernous hall with a massive pipe organ to my right.  It was immense to see this hall, absolutely stunning architecture – I loved it!  This place reminded me of the York Minster, but with no pews and less people.

My feet are cold.

Looking down, I find my shoes had been removed and I can’t find my Doc Martens.  It’s raining outside – storming in fact.  It’s amazing to see it rain in Heaven… it’s nothing like it is on Earth.  Golden sunshine glimmers through the glittering rain outside as it taps gently against the glass of the tiny room I’m standing in.

The clock has stopped ticking.

Its long trendles, beaded with diamonds and sapphires and opals stilled.  Its hands have stopped at 12:15.  I’m not sure if it’s day or night… but something doesn’t seem right as I approach the clock in its glass case.

I shouldn’t be here.  I know this now.  I know what I wanted to know where my friend was… but I don’t think this was the place to come to find out.
“You know, Bethany, you most certainly are in the wrong place.” His voice whispered at my shoulder, “Well, you’re not needed here yet.”
I turned and saw him, in his robes, knowing it was something of a dream, “I’m sorry.  I just want to know where my friend is.”
“She’s fine.  But she’s not here.” He said, “Helene may be very sick, but she’s fighting to stay home.”
I looked to my feet, “You call this place home.”
A friendly smile grows on his face, “Yes… but I mean Earth.  And you’re in the wrong place.  You’re not supposed to be here.  I don’t know who gave you clearance to be in the Time-Keeper’s Quarters, but I should send you back where you belong now.” He reached out to touch my shoulder.
“Wait!” I stepped back, “My shoes… where are my shoes?”
Looking to my feet, he blinked, “Why they’re on your feet, of course.”
I looked to my feet again, to find them back on and tied up.  How they got to be there without my help was beyond me; but I was happy to have, um, found them.  Shrugging, I looked up at him, “Okay, send me back home.”

I woke up to my alarm.

It was 6am. 

Picking it up, I turned it off and put it down on the bedside table then curled up on my side wondering just what the heck happened.  Was it a dream?  Did that just happen?

Damn, it felt so darned real!

“Abstraction is often one floor above you.” Came a whisper over my shoulder of his voice.
Turning over, I flipped the covers off me and sat up, ready to confront whoever had snuck into my house the night before to watch me sleep… to share my bed without my permission… to… to…

…there was nobody there!

My day went on.  I did my usual things of breakfast, going out and shopping and visiting my folks.  Nothing out of the ordinary happened for most of the day. 
Not until I needed to go to my doctors and get a check up on a few old skin complaints.  I approached the building and looked up the first floor where I saw my friend, who I was so worried about sitting by the window reading a magazine. 
She turned the page, spotted me and disappeared from view as she rose from the chair.
My heart sunk.  She didn’t want me to see her.
Bursting into tears on the footpath, I didn’t know what to do.  I really wanted to see my friend, but if she didn’t want to see me, what could I do?
“Bethany?” Helene’s voice was by my side, “Hey, what’s wrong?”
Looking up to her, I sniffed, wiping the heels of my hands over my cheeks, “Helene? I have been looking for you everywhere.”
“I know.  Mum told me.  She told me that she’s been telling you lies to keep me safe.  But she didn’t need to.” Her arm was around me in a minute, “I’m going okay.  I’ve had my liver transplant… now it’s just about getting better.”
“I wish I had known you were better.”
“Who told you to find me here?”
“Nobody, I have an appointment with my skin specialist here.” I said, “We happen to have them in the same building.”
Helene smiled, “Come on, let’s go in.  We can chat until your appointment is done, and we’ll have a cup of coffee or tea afterwards.”
“Oh… that does sound great.” We walked in through the doors and up to the first floor where we both waited in the same waiting room together chatting and catching up with everything over the last two years (yeah, we’re friends who can do that).  Then, the doctor came out, calling my name.
I stood and turned to him, freezing on the spot when I saw his face, “You.”
“Of course me, I’m your doctor.” He smiled that wonderful friendly smile, “Come on, Bethany.”
I followed him to his office and he offered me a chair as he closed the door, “Now, how are you feeling today?”
“It’s you… from, you know…” I pointed up towards the ceiling.
Putting down my file, he clasped his hands on top of it, “Yes it’s me and like I told you…”
“But this isn’t abstraction.”
“You found your friend when you least expected to, didn’t you?”

The first quarter of this piece was written fresh from a weird-ass dream I had this morning.  Right up until the alarm went off at 6am was my dream... verbatim.  It was amazing, brilliant and still very much clear in my mind even now.  


  1. That's pretty mind-bending!

    I had a dream this week that I also want to turn into a story. Except I don't want to, because it was seriously spooky. You did a great job with yours!

    1. Thank you. I've been turning my dreams into stories for a few years... it's hard to do that without creeping yourself out, but once you figure out a good storyline to put them into, it's all a lot of fun.

    2. Most of my dreams aren't coherent enough to become stories. And when they are, they often are too disturbing to use--horrid things happening to people I love. This week's was an exception, being creepy but not involving anyone I know. Much more like a creepy SF film! I don't write much horror, but it might need to be done.

  2. I like your style! I've been having pretty weird dreams in the last few weeks too, and I rarely remember my dreams.
    I love the way you blended it all together. Good job!

    1. Thank you. I have been getting very vividly weird dreams since my Grandmother passed away. And so, I have about 3 dream journals packed full of dreams that I can remember with such clarity it's amazing. Some are just 'junk' while others are about people I know and better still, I have had dreams about famous people who have passed away and come back to talk to me (and the really creepy part of this is when I've woken up and written it down, what they spoke to me about was personal stuff - only things their family would know; and years later, their family would be interviewed and say the same things I've dreamed about... spooky!).