Hey guys! This is my first attempt at short fiction for adults since I was in college. Please let me know what you think (and tell me if you find any typos). This blog is a place for me to hone my skills at prose before branching out into the wider world. Wish me luck!
In the beginning, all was void. Then God created the universe. Then he created the celestial bodies. Then he textured the bodies with lumps and craters. Then on these lumps and craters he laid the plants and fungi. Then he created the large animals and the small animals. Then he created the very small animals and bacteria. And, lastly, he created humans.
The humans were a peaceful race, only fighting when there was true Evil. And when true Evil appeared, they fought it without fear, for those who die fighting true Evil will surely go to Heaven.
In time, the humans learned things. Thanks to God’s guidance, they discovered science and technology, and they advanced. They discovered certain points on the Earth’s surface dipped in gravity at regular intervals. These became the first spaceports, grace be to the Lord.
They soon realized they were alone among intelligent creatures, though life of lesser kinds was abundant in the universe. They colonized lush Mars, temperate Mercury, autumnal Venus, and the rest of the planets soon after. In the years to come, grace be to God, they discovered wormholes near every planet, and that these wormholes were easily manipulated.
They fared far into the universe, colonizing galaxy after galaxy, doing greater and greater experiments, and finding more and more truth and beauty.
And then, on a Wednesday, there was Nat Rauling. Nat was the first human ever to talk to God. He had just drafted a monograph on a perfect Theory of Everything, when a strange light appeared. The light blinded him at first. As his eyes adjusted, he realized the light was expanding. Soon, it engulfed him.
“Lord?” said Nat.
“I’d prefer you didn’t call me that,” said a voice. “I’m an atheist.”
Nat was confused. There had been atheists on ancient Earth long ago. But, once it was shown that human DNA was genetically distinct from all other animals, most of them gave up. When it was found that a secret message, “Great Job! Keep going!” was hidden deep in Euler’s number, they quit entirely. But, he supposed, there was no reason God himself couldn’t be an atheist. After all, he could do anything.
“Why have I been allowed the pleasure of speaking to you?” asked Nat.
“Well,” said God, collecting his thoughts. “I thought it’d be cool if at the pinnacle of scientific discovery, the creator of the universe showed up.”
“Oh,” said Nat. “So, I haven’t been selected for special purpose.”
“Oh,” said God. “No. No, I suppose not.”
There was an awkward silence.
“May I ask why you’re an atheist?”
God thought for a moment. “I suppose there just isn’t enough evidence.”
“But what about the perfect order of creation?”
God laughed. “Maybe in your universe! Sorry, I forgot. Let’s see… do you believe in an afterlife?”
“Of course. I attend seances regularly to talk with my deceased great grandfather.”
“Ah, see that’s perfect. Perfect. See, in my universe, that doesn’t happen. A lot of people wish it worked that way, but it doesn’t.”
“I don’t understand.”
“As far as I know, in my universe, there is no afterlife.”
God sighed again. “You see, things are kind of disappointing over here. For example, my people weren’t created special. We ‘evolved.’ We’re the long time descendents of apes.”
Nat laughed at this for a long time before he realized God was serious. On Earth there had been people who believed in this sort of thing, but they were dissuaded by how the human mind shared almost no similarities in design with any other animal.
“It’s true,” said God. “And you know how you had crusades.”
“Well, in your case, you were fighting true Evil.”
“The skeleton lizards of Darkmore.”
God snirked. “Yeah. In my universe, we had crusades, but it turned out it was against regular people who had different beliefs. We even had a crusade of children and most of the kids died en route.”
“How could children die? It’s physiologically impossible.”
“Right, right. You see, Nat, my universe isn’t so easy to live in. So, I sort of… figured out all the problems I could and built yours.”
“Oh,” said Nat. And he thought for a while in silence. “So… is none of anything… is nothing I do… you know… meaningful?”
“Of course it is!” shouted God. “It’s a lot more meaningful than me. You’ve solved the puzzle of your entire universe. And when you die, a program I wrote will scan your brain, determine your perfect afterlife, and construct it for you. When I die… POOF! That’s it.”
This both pleased Nat and emptied his hope. “But…” he stammered, “If you built everything, then is everything predetermined? Is free will a myth?”
“Huh. Huh. I hadn’t really thought about that. I suppose so, except, well, now that I think about it, it really depends on whether my universe is predetermined.”
“Jury’s still out.”
By now, God was starting to grow distraught. Nat sensed this and tried to think of the most relevant possible question.
“What happens to us when you die?”
“Oh, don’t worry. You’re on a solid state drive. It’ll be about a googol to the googol googols generations before things are over. And I’m trying to get my son to take over after me, but he’s not really a computer guy.”
Nat fell silent at this. His mind stretched. He imagined all of time, stretching out before him. He knew that within 50 years, he would be enwombed in all the delights of Heaven for all time. But it would still end one day. Perhaps another Wednesday. It would still end and it was likely that everything that had ever mattered would be a nothing of nothings.
The silence lasted too long for God’s comfort.
“Well,” said God… “I hope you don’t feel bad. I’m sure you make sims like this in your world. We’re practically obsessed with them.”
“No,” replied Nat. “Why would we?”