All I Remember

stairs to heaven



I remembered holding a glass. I felt I had drunk its content because I felt my thirst was quenched. I remembered being refreshed after drinking something so cool. I couldn’t remember what I drank, though. Was it water? Was it wine?

I looked around and I recognized that I was in a reception area. An old man stood in front of me behind the counter. His curly white hair and curly white beard almost covered his wrinkled face. My gut feeling said he could be Simon Peter, the gatekeeper. Beside him was a cherub, a cute baby girl, less than a year old, probably six months old, sitting on the table. Her big, round, black eyes stared at me. Again, my gut feeling said that the drink should have been hers, not mine.

“…, why did you drink that?” the old man asked. “That’s not even yours. And why are you here? What do you need?”

I didn’t answer. Instead I tried my best to remember what name he called me. Was it Iniko? Hainaku? Haiku? Aiko?

“What brings you here?” he asked again.

“Oh, I’m sorry,” I replied as I snapped back to where I was. “I was so thirsty after…”

I turned around to look at where I came from. I saw the white stairs that extended too long that I couldn’t see the landing. How many steps was that? How long have I been climbing? I looked around again. Everything was white and cloudy. No air, yet it felt cool. Silent, yet I could hear a tinge of angelic music from afar. Aside from the old man and the cherub, I couldn’t recognize the shadowy figures. My gut feel said that they’re also people like me, waiting for their turn at the reception.

“I’m sorry that I took your drink,” I apologized to the cherub.

The old man shook his head and said while looking on a big book, “You shouldn’t be here. It’s not yet your time.”

What did he say? My time? Am I dead?

“Go back to where you came from,” he instructed me as he closed the big book. “However, since you drank from this glass, you have to suffer the consequences. Go now!”

I had no choice but to turn around and go down the stairs. I never looked back. But what did I drink? Why did he say that I have to suffer the consequences? So I continued to go down the stairs while thinking of what I drank.

And then I heard voices. So I opened my eyes, and saw two men in front of me as I lay down. I was supposed to say something but I felt a plastic tube sticking out from my mouth.

The man on my left called, “Nurse!” and he went away from me. I saw him meeting a nurse and they went back to my bed. The nurse started immediately to remove the tube from my mouth. For the first time, I felt soreness from my face, and my back hurts.

“Where am I?” I asked immediately after the tube was gone.

“Good morning, miss,” said the first man. He smiled at me and said, “I’m Doctor Chan, and you’re in a hospital.”

“Hospital?” I asked. “Why? What happened?”

“That’s what we would like to know,” said the second man. “I’m Patrick, a police investigator assigned to your case.”

“What case?”

“Don’t you remember, anything, Miss…?” the police asked.

I shook my head.

“What’s your name, Miss…?” he asked again.

“I don’t know,” I replied and shook my head.

“So we have found a naked female, beaten to death, brought to the hospital, survived three days of coma, and suffers from amnesia,” the police said. He shook his head and turned away from me. “Great, just great.”

(to be continued)

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