01 - Prologue

               No one ever told me that life would be easy. It was far from it, but as I view the various flashbacks from my long-lived life, I find myself proud of the way that I handled some of life’s curveballs and difficult situations. Of course, I made mistakes and I have regrets for some choices; however, I understood they were mistakes at a young age, and I corrected them until the day came where I could look into the mirror and be proud of the person in it. That is when I found true happiness and an understanding of life’s purpose.

               Walking through the hallway of light is peaceful and my memories are being projected onto the walls for me to reminisce. The fact that I am dead is certain to me along with a calming sensation telling me that it is going to be alright; there is more to add to my story.

               I find myself tearing up, relief fills my heart with the knowledge that my consciousness will go on; something I have believed will happen since I was a child, yet I am relieved, nonetheless. The recollections of my life seem to fade in the background of my mind as I start to ponder on what the afterlife has in store for me, and what role I will have to play in it. Will I be judged by my actions? Will my many questions about life be answered?

               A recent event appears to my right, and I start to get nervous, my amusement ride is ending. My pace slows as I notice the end of the hallway with a closed, wooden door. I quickly find the courage to open it and begin a new journey of understanding. At first, I peek my head into the small, brightly lit room and then I rush inside, perplexed to find it empty. The only thing that grabs my attention is my reflection from the wall with a large mirror. Stepping into the room changed my appearance and I am no longer a woman in her nineties, I look to be back to my early thirties. I touch the smooth surface and smile, that is until my reflection stops mimicking my movements.

                “Who are you?” I ask.

               My reflection smiles and answers, “I am the Evaluator. I have lived inside you your whole life, seeing your world through your own eyes, observing and learning who you are.”

               I take a second to think and respond, “Ok, so who am I?”

               The Evaluator smiles wider, “You are a sight for sore eyes, I have been looking forward to this evaluation. If your life was simply a test, you passed with flying colors.”

               “Was it all just a test?” I inquire.

               “In a way, yes, however it isn’t that simple. I was born inside of you with the knowledge of my purpose, a silent observer who would report back to the Designers my findings on how well the system of life you are familiar with accomplished its goal. The Designers have created many systems of life, the one you are from is very old – one of the originals.”

               The Evaluator pauses and steps through the mirror as I step backwards. My clone circles around me and raises an arm. The wall to my right changes into a chalkboard. Writing materializes onto it.

GOOD AND EVIL

               Pointing to the words, the Evaluator continues, “Necessary components in every system, however, you were thrown into a particularly cruel world. Evil outweighs good, significantly, but when you were shown malice, you returned love. Hate and prejudice filled the air, yet you rejected the ideas and carried out good deeds toward the helpless and suffering. You were taught evil and chose good.”

               “I may have been foolish in believing that I could change my world by my actions.”

               The Evaluator smirks at me again, “What if I gave you the chance to create your own world… from scratch.”

               “Is that what my new purpose is?”

               “You never had a purpose, but if you had one it was to live, learn, and try to be happy in the ruthless world the Designers threw you into.”

               A little taken aback from the straightforward words, I cross my arms. I kept a journal in my past life devoted to solving the riddle of life’s purpose. I once wrote a short theory about how there is no purpose to life and before I finished writing it, I ripped out the pages in anger; I never wanted to believe that was true.

               Noticing my uneasiness, the Evaluator turns toward the chalkboard, “That is the goal of the Designers – to give purpose to life, meaning to as many souls as possible. One Designer had the radical idea to look for help where no one else thought of before, in one of our very own creations.”

               “I am up for the challenge. How do I begin?”

               I receive a familiar grin when the Evaluator snaps her head back at me, “You are worthy to ascend into the realm of the Designers where you will become one. A lesson plan has been prepared to bring you up to speed on previous attempts which brought notable causes for failure, known necessities for success, and basic rules in order to appease the other Designers. They have agreed to bestow fundamental powers to you to start your own system of life – the more advanced stuff may have to be earned.”

               “I will become a god?”

               “Careful now, one thing that has been learned is to never give too much power to a being that isn’t ready or trustworthy. You have my blessing only because you have proven to be fair and honorable. People can change… I have seen it for better and worse. Do not let it change you.”

               I nod my head in understanding, “I won’t change.”

               “Then allow me to show you your new home and school,” The Evaluator motions toward the mirror where ripples form as if it were liquid metal - a portal to another realm. I start my stride when I am asked, “What will you call your world?”

               I am distracted by the excitement of entering a new realm and stop, three feet away from the ebbing mirror, “I’m sorry?”

               “I have studied and memorized all the names of every created system of life, and I was wondering… what will you name your world?”

               “Well, I was always fond of a name I once heard in my travels… Earth.”

               “Earth… Unique and acceptable to me. I like it; it is better than the name of where you came from.”

               “I lived a long life there and learned much about life, but I have always dreamed about how it could be more meaningful if people were less cruel and selfish.” I take one step closer to the portal before resuming my thought, “I never liked the name Hell either.”