People always ask me where I’m going.
But shhh… here’s a secret:
I don’t know.
Let me tell you why.
Long ago, I met this man who told me he could take me places I’d never been. Arcadia’s a big place, so I jumped at the opportunity.
He pulled out this baggie of little mushrooms, and told me that there were two kinds there.
One of them would make my mind explode with joy and happiness, and the whole world would turn into sunshine and rainbows.
Which is weird, since I don’t think I’ve ever seen either.
But the other mushroom, that one would make me blind, make me sicker than I’ve ever been. I’d be wishing I was dead if I took that one.
Well duh, why would I choose that mushroom?
“That’s the kicker,” he said.
I didn’t get to choose.
Tombstone reminds me a lot of that man.
Some kind of gravedigger, he and his bestie Igor walk around to meet the dead.
Weird way to say they carry around corpses.
They say the dead have two paths they can take.
The first one is called Paradise, and I can only imagine what a place actually named that looks like. It must be the most beautiful place in Arcadia.
Golly, it must have that sunshine and rainbow thing.
The second one is the Underworld, and people are always telling me to go there. It doesn’t sound like a pretty place, being so deep under everything.
There are religions telling people how to get to one or the other, but Tombstone says all of that is bunk.
He says he gets to choose who goes where.
I think that’s supposed to be scary, to intimidate people into doing whatever they say. The same way the mushroom man wanted to control me.
But I say bully to that!
If I don’t get a choice in what happens, then I’m going to live the way I want to.
Because that’s the only thing that gets guys like that going, making people so afraid that they can control their every action.
Tombstone, you are so surrounded by the dead that you control their fates. Anyone that knows that is so fearful of you that they’ll do anything you say.
Because they don’t want to go down to the Underworld.
But that’s the trick you play on everybody, isn’t it?
It doesn’t matter what people do. Whatever they say, whatever they do. The gods they pray to. The zealots they bow to.
It all matters less than why I can’t see the sun.
Because it’s all on your word. Where we go when we die is decided on your whim, not any action we could take.
Which mushroom I took didn’t matter, what mattered is that he controlled me.
So I took neither.
I skipped off into the forests of Arcadia, without care of where I’m going.
Because I choose to live. What happens after that isn’t up to me, Tombstone.
So I’ll live my life the way I want.
And wherever I go?
It’ll be better than wherever you are.