She was staring at the sun. The sun was taking its last breath before it would die in the ocean and give way to the cover of the night and then would be reborn again like the Phoenix the next morning, in another part of the world, in another ocean. The vicious loop which would snail everyone towards their end. Faintly luminous stars were visible on the other end of the sky, where the dominance of the sun was loosing its grip. She smiled as she gazed at the ball of fire about to taste water.
“Isn’t it beautiful?”
The voice completely shocked her out of her wits. She was sitting on the corner of a bench at a secluded area where all she could hear was the sound of the lapping waves and the occasional gush of the soft wind from the sea. She gave out a small cry and moved her hand towards her heart.
“Oh! I am so sorry. I didn’t mean to shock you.”, the stranger said as she stared at him.
He was around fifty. He had jet black hair with soft streaks of whites in-between. The lines at the ends of his eyes were prominently visible as he smiled. He was wearing a black overcoat, a black jeans and black shoes. His smile was infectious and so were his light grey eyes. He was sitting at the other corner of the bench.
“I am fine. Yes, it is beautiful.” She said as she faced the sun again.
They sat staring at the Sun for a few moments.
“Do you ever wonder why humans are here?”. The stranger asked her.
She turned and stared at him for a while.
“I am 20. Do you really think that I need to think about this?”
“Ok. hmmmm….lets see. The earth was at a perfect distance from the Sun which lead to the evolution of life form. Then human species came and took over the world as they were better equipped to survive and as the Dinosaurs were, thankfully, already extinct. That’s why they are here.”
The stranger was silent for a few seconds.
“Now let me ask you a few questions.”, the girl said.
“What is the purpose of all this?”
He looked at her and gave one more of his infectious smiles.
“The purpose is to enrich the souls with the experiences on this Earth.” He said.
“So that the souls learn and evolve, so that they can enrich the one and only source.”
He stared at her and blinked twice.
“There is no why after this. It is the ultimate truth.”
“But think about it. Even if there is a source to which all the souls return, as you say, then why is that source enriching itself? What is its purpose?”
“You ask me questions which are beyond my domain, young lady.”
“Hmmm…maybe the source is some monster who enslaves the souls and feed on their experiences. Maybe that’s why souls never remember their previous experiences, because they are all sucked out of them by the source.”
“Now this is imagination.”, the girl said as she smiled.
“Maybe this is the truth. What we think is God, is some monster soul master.” The man whispered as he eyed the Sun.
“Ok, now try to be a little more optimistic.”, the girl said.
“Ok…maybe the source…I can’t think of an explanation. What can be the purpose of the source? I never thought about it. I never questioned it.”
They were silent for a few more moments as the Sun inched towards the ocean.
“What is your name?”, the girl asked.
“The Angel of Death.”
“oh!!! Really? Then you must be knowing all the answers to my questions. You must be close to God.” She said as she laughed.
“I am not supposed to ask questions which are beyond my duties.” The man said and gave her a wink.
“And what are your duties, my dear Angel of Death?”
“I ferry people. When the soul leaves the body, it does not remember the path to the source. I take the soul back to the source.”
She was finding it extremely amusing and laughable.
“Why are you here today?” She asked.
“Oh!!! I came here to ferry a soul. A girl is going to die on that road in a few minutes.” He said pointing at the road far off at the other end of the beach.
“I must go now. Its time.” He said as he stood up.
“Hey!!!won’t you wait for the sunset?”
“No. I must leave now. It was nice talking to you.”
“Same here. Bye, Angel of Death.”
“Bye and see you soon.” He smiled back as he waved.
The sun was halfway in water now. It has splashed its golden red colour all over the ocean and the sky as the rotating earth hid it completely from view. Sunsets always warmed her heart. She considered it as God’s best art work. The girl sighed and smiled at the sight and stood up. She started to move towards the road.
As she reached the busy road she saw the angel of death crossing the road. He was so absorbed in his thoughts that he didn’t hear the blaring horns of the bus approaching him. As the bus hit him, he was thrown high up in the sky, and died instantly as he hit the ground.
* * *
As he opened his eyes, he saw the girl standing in front of him.She was smiling at him. He felt really light and realised that he was floating in air. As he looked down, he saw his body lying in the middle of the road surrounded by strangers crying for help. The girl was wearing a long white gown now and had huge white feathers and a halo on her head.
“Who are you?” He asked her.
“The Angel of Death”. She said.
“Come, let me show you the path to reach the source. You shall find the answers to all your questions there, as you have found them a million times before and you will forget them just before you enter flesh, as you have forgotten them a million times before.” She said as she took his hand and moved up high in the sky. As they flew up, he saw the sun rise, moving away from the waters of the earth and shining with all its brilliance and might.