John Marsden Writing Topic #236
Catch a train that takes you into a strange land.**
Journey Not the Destination to the Afterlife
All board passengers!
Please stand clear!
This is it.
Throughout my life, I had many theories in regards to what the afterlife might be like; I never expected that I’d have to take a journey on a train to get there.
The other passengers have just died, like me, all of us on the same day. Apparently that’s how it works, each train leaves at 11.59pm with the souls of everyone who died that day on board. I’m 29 and got hit by a car that I didn’t even see coming.
I didn’t want to die now, but oddly enough I’m at peace, maybe it’s a side effect of death, or the journey I’m on now.
The windows on the train are frozen—even though the train leaves at a specific time, time itself is frozen during the journey. There’s no life flashing before my eyes, just ice. The conductor tells us that seeing our life before our eyes is most likely to sadden us, remind us that our lives are over. The ice prevents us from looking too far forward and back, keeps us focused for the next life ahead of us.
So far, none of the afterlife clichés have presented themselves, except for one.
I see a blinding bright light in the tunnel ahead.
**Reference: Marsden J 1998, Everything I Know About Writing, Pan Macmillan, Australia.