[WP] You recently became a God. You’re trying to get used to being omnipotent. It’s not going very well. [Link to post.]
“Oh.” Anderson Anderson blinked. Before he blinked he stood in the restroom of Bonanza Steakhouse, his favorite restaurant, washing his hands and looking forward to a meal. After he blinked, Anderson stood in the restroom of Bonanza Steakhouse staring at his reflection. He left the restroom, then left the restaurant. He walked through the parking lot and continued walking, leaving his car behind.
He strolled through the city, his eyes focused on the sidewalk ahead of him. After a block, a wrinkled, silver-haired woman stepped out of an antique shop and fell into pace alongside him. Despite her obvious age, she kept up with him, without added support from a walker or cane. On the next block, Anderson acknowledged the old woman.
“How?” he asked. His head remained trained on the path ahead, but he knew the woman would answer him.
“What’s done is done. I think for something this big, the ‘how‘ just isn’t important. Don’t you agree?” she asked. Unlike Anderson, the elderly woman enjoyed the sights of the town as they walked along the sidewalk. She watched parents leading children along the strip, filing in and out of the shops. They carried bags and boxes in all shapes and colors. In the distance, she heard sirens.
“Yeah,” he replied, still focused on the ground. They continued onto the next block before either of them spoke again.
“Why?” Anderson asked.
“It’s your turn,” the woman replied. “Lucky for you your name is near the top of the list, Anderson Anderson.” She chuckled. “Your parents did a great job with it.” They reached the end of the block, but instead of continuing ahead, Anderson crossed to his left. The woman followed him across the street, and they started walking back in the direction of Bonanza along the other side. The sirens sounded closer.
“You can pass it on, of course. If you’re not ready,” she offered.
“Thinking about it,” he replied.
“The catch is, you can’t go back; your time is done here. If you pass it on, you yourself pass on,” the woman said, then smiled. “Of course, that doesn’t scare you anymore. You know the truth of the universe now.” She poked a stiff finger against his arm. “This is just a container. It doesn’t matter, you’ll just get another one.” They crossed to the next block. Another block closer to the Bonanza.
“What are you going to do, Anderson?” She asked. She spoke louder to contend with the blaring sirens rushing up from behind them. The pair continued walking while the people around them stopped to see where the sirens were coming from and where they might be going. The old woman walked around a young boy taking advantage of his mother’s distraction to pet a stray cat, and patted his head.
“Thinking,” Anderson said. An ambulance roared by as they crossed onto the next block. They walked half the block in silence before either of them spoke again.
“Oh, that’s lovely! I’m going to go in and have a look.” The woman noticed an antique apothecary table in a shop window. The shop sat across the street from the antique shop the woman exited to meet Anderson. “Good luck, Anderson. Whatever you decide.” The woman’s steps slowed, but Anderson kept walking.
“I love you, mom,” he said, without looking up.
“I know,” she said, then disappeared into the shop. Anderson’s mother passed away several years ago, but he needed someone to help him acclimate. Borrowing a soul for a chat is a minor feat for a God, and now she was back where she belonged until she received a new container. Anderson crossed to the next block and made a decision. He stopped walking and stared at the ambulance in the Bonanza parking lot across the street. The EMTs were loading a body bag into the back.
Anderson did not like his mind being everywhere at once. He did not like having a constant tally in his mind of every single death and every single birth every single second. His mother was the only way he could focus long enough to make the decision. He chuckled and waved at the ambulance carrying away his old shell, and wondered what his new one would look like.
“Not for me. Who’s next?” Anderson said aloud, then faded away into wisps of white smoke.