Spiritual Guidance (Flash Fiction)

You are here.

Bob squinted at the sign and the red circle in the middle that was apparently him. Thousands of travelers moved around him in silence. Their ethereal bodies floated across the spotless marble floor. He noticed there were no benches, no chairs, no bins to toss rubbish in, no clocks telling the time. “I guess you can’t take it with you,” he said. No one heard him.

He worked his way through the station. Escalators brought him up, stairs drifted him down. Hallways led to more stations and more stairs. He passed waiting crowds standing by their signs: Mormon, Hindu, Muslim, Eastern Orthodox, Catholic, Judaism, and many more. All were silent. All were serious. Bob continued on his way.

Countless trains gobbled up the souls. Their shimmering doors whispered open and simply sucked them in, only to whisper shut again. Bob watched them go with a strange grimness on their faces. They showed no joys or fears. They gave no indication of concern. The trains rolled away into their dark subways, gone. Then the empty area would fill with more silent souls. Bob traveled on.

“You are here,” he said. Still, no one looked or paused. He had journeyed for hours that felt like days. The red dot stared back; It was the only blip of color in a purgatory of gray. He slowly turned around and around until he saw a different sign. A long line had formed, but Bob figured he had the time. He wanted to ask a question, the same one that was on everyone else’s mind, but what was the point? Each form in front of him was being helped and pointed in a different direction. He floated and waited and slowly made his way to the customer service that assisted the agnostic.

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