“Ezey?” Harry called out for his caseworker as soon as he recognized the room. He woke up in a small office on a brown leather chaise. He’d been in the room several times before; it reminded him of a therapist’s office. He knew he’d been there but had no idea how many times. Several seconds after he woke up he heard a knock on the door; then, it opened. A lean, clean-shaved man in a dark suit walked in.
“Congratulations, Harry. You reached the first tier,” the man said when he entered. He stopped by the chaise to shake Harry’s hand on the way to the desk. After the handshake, he sat on the edge of his desk to chat with Harry.
“Thanks, Ezey,” Harry nodded. “Uh, can you go over that part again?” Ezey chuckled.
“Of course. I’m supposed to anyway,” he shrugged. “Not everyone’s memory makes it this far. First, tell me what you know.”
“I’m dead,” the first fact came easy enough. Ezey nodded. “You’re my caseworker… I think you said you’re called a Middleman.” Ezey nodded again. Harry continued. “You said I reached the first tier…,” the portly man scratched his beard while he thought. “That means I can be a Unique Soul now… I think?” Ezey nodded again.
“What else?” he asked.
“There’s more of me… what about the rest?” Ezey shrugged.
“That’s up to you, you got here first. If you decide to reincarnate into a Unique you’ll have to wait until your alternates die too so we can get you all together. Or you can keep going,” Ezey smiled at Harry. “Go back to your Earth or pick a different one. Keep trying to learn and earn more points to go up to the next tier. If you pick a Unique you get to choose which alternate Earth you want; but, you can’t pick the same one you just came from.”
“How many of me are there?”
“Right now there’s about 500 of you out there.”
“Right now?” Harry asked.
“Yeah. It’s how the process works. When a new soul is born it’s divided out into tens of thousands of dimensions. As they learn about life and pass through here they start getting consolidated until you can become a Unique,” Ezey explained. Harry was sure he’d heard the explanation before and was glad Ezey did not seem to mind repeating himself. He assumed patience was a job requirement. “By the time you reach the Celestial tier for Uniques, there’s usually only a handful of alternates. But you…,” Ezey pointed at Harry. “…have the most points so you get to decide for all of you. Even if you go around again, you’re still in charge when you come back.”
“Is Celestial the highest tier? What tier am I on?” Ezey nodded.
“You’re in the first tier now: plants. Then it’s Animals, Humans, Conquerors, and Celestials on the top. You’re looking at about 20-30 lifetimes per tier; in case you’re wondering.”
“Is it worth it?” Harry asked. “I mean, in your opinion, is it worth waiting?” Ezey shrugged.
“Well, I’ll tell you. It’s up to you and how you want to live your last life. I can say there’s a Sol, a Celestial Unique, out there that we’re afraid of up here. So,” he shrugged. “There’s a lot to be said for the opportunity to get that powerful I guess.”
“Is this an option?” Harry asked. He quickly decided that he did not want to be somewhere that he chanced running into someone even Middlemen feared.
“This,” Harry spread his arms wide to gesture at the office around them. “Up here. Can I be a Middleman?”
“I’ll ask. Go around again while we figure it out,” Ezey said.
“Yeah, okay. Let’s go again,” Harry said. Ezey and the room disappeared leaving Harry in darkness. Then he was born.