A Chat About Hell: Excerpt from Beers In Heaven
As they crossed the road back toward the downtown area, Zack managed to relax enough to wonder about his former life. He asked Stan when he might expect to reunite with anyone he’d cared for.
“You’ll have plenty of time to visit with your kindred spirits later,” Stan said. “That is, unless they’ve been sent to Hell.”
Zack stopped walking. “Hell?” he repeated. “You mean there’s actually a Hell?”
“Of course there’s a Hell: fire and brimstone, eternal punishment, the whole shebang. Why wouldn’t there be?”
“Because eternal punishment makes no sense. If reckoning is necessary, so be it, but there has to be some point at which a person can be redeemed. I mean, given enough time, people can eventually make up for their sins, right?”
“Nope. That’s not how Hell works. You can get kicked out of Heaven and sent to Hell, but once you’re there, you’re there.”
Zack froze in place, choked up, and began to tremble. “Now I’m afraid to do anything!” he said.
“Relax, kid,” Stan said, patting his back. Stick with me and you’ll be fine. I’ll make sure you don’t do anything stupid.”
“Thanks,” Zack said, and they began walking again. “But I’m still not comfortable with the idea of someone I knew and loved being in Hell. Would it be possible, once I regain my identity, to check?”
“Why would you want to do that?”
“Because I want to either make sure everyone’s safe or get an explanation.”
Zack sighed and put his hands in pockets. “Well,” he said, “I guess it’s good to know that God takes our privacy very seriously. When was the policy enacted?”
“God came up with it when he finally got the hint that people don’t like being watched, especially by someone who never shows his own face.”
“Yeah, right?” Zack said. “That’s just creepy and wrong.”
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