Here's a random ridiculous story I made up because I was curious. It's totally unfinished but I was exploring the matter and this is my interpretation of exploration. X

The Story of Gene. Once there was a cow called Gene. She was a just like any other dairy cow and loved to munch on grass. Mostly because it was the only thing she could munch on. Her day was like any other: • Munch grass • Regurgitate • Repeat She didn’t have problems with constant repetition. Partly because she was a cow, but mostly because she had nothing else to do. But one day her life changed. She died. Dying was the thing that she had expected for a while now. It happened to everyone. It happened to Scrawnbags, the old cow that lived in the paddock next door; Zoot, the old bull; and Alex, the young steer who lived in her paddock. But the way she died was something nobody could’ve expected. Something nobody would’ve expected.

It happened on a lovely spring day, when the sun was warming the grass on the eastern side of Goldenvale. She happened to chewing grass at the time. She was only at the start of the daily routine. It was just like any other day until she felt a strange pain in her gut somewhere. She’d just stood there –mid-chew – and then decided that there was probably something special in the grass. She just swished her tail to bat at a fly and continued chewing. It was Monday morning, and the first priority was food.

Little did she know that the substance in the grass was poison. It didn’t taste any different so Gene continued to eat. And eat. The pain continued to get worse, and Gene continued to munch anyway. It was late in the night when she finally collapsed and died. It was very tragic. Her last thought was of Zoot, the old bull. And that was her first meeting with a fellow known as Death. Part 1: Death 1 Death is not who many people perceive him to be. He is not what you or I would expect. People think of Death as an it, or just something that happens to people. They are wrong, of course. Death is a person, who appears to look like any other person. If you could actually see him. When Gene was slipping off, Death appeared. Gene happened to look down, and saw her corpse –stiff and devoid of life- in the paddock. Death appeared human, which kind of startled her, but he could communicate with her. He looked like what people these days call the Grim Reaper, and, like the Grim Reaper, wore a long dark robe. He had no face, just an ominous shadow which filled the hood of his robe. He was cold, but his voice was deep and warm: “Gene, you have been wronged.” Gene had looked up at him, still spooked from the fact that she was hovering over her corpse. She couldn’t see him smile but she could feel a kind of happiness, a sense of comfort. “It’s alright, Gene. You have died, but I see that you have never wronged. You were wronged. I will give you a second chance in this timeline. You will know who you were but you will never know who wronged you. They are going to be punished, because what happens in this lifetime is always punishable by time. Eternity is the only cure. Come with me.” Gene looked up into the gloom that was his face and silently agreed. She had no choice and he understood that. Grim held out his hand and beckoned her. She walked forward, and felt a hand on her head. Then she was gone. When she woke up, she was laying on some sort of grass, except it was soft and smelt like cotton. She was covered in a sheet and somehow she was raised off the ground. “What the?” she said to herself. Her eyes suddenly widened. Her voice was clear and rich, and it was human. She leaped up off the cotton grass, the sheets tangled to her legs. Gene let out a shriek. It too, was human. And she only had two legs. This time she screamed. “Gene, it’s ok.” Gene looked around, wondering where the voice came from. It was the Grim Reaper. “You may call me The Grim Reaper.” Gene looked at him, her jaw dropping. The Grim Reaper smiled. She didn’t see it but she felt it. “You…You…what the hell am i?” “You know what you are, Gene.” “I’m death on two legs!” “Ha ha. Yes, humans are horrible animals, but you time as a cow is up. You have entered the cycle of advancement. You were once a mosquito, you know.” Gene looked at him. “What’s a mosquito?” Death shook his head. “Uh…never mind it yet.” “Why do I have to be this?” “Every living thing becomes a human, sooner or later. The sooner you die, the sooner you are born as something else.” The Grim Reaper moved forward, towards her. “I’ll just give you a hand here.” He touched her hand, and Gene felt an enormous amount of information transfer into her. He stepped away and pointed through the window. “Now-” “Where’s your scythe?” Gene interrupted. The Grim Reaper looked at her, and Gene could feel that he was ashamed. “I…um…I lost it some time ago. I was reaping an old man and he invited me to have a cup of tea. I got distracted and left it somewhere. I can’t remember where it is but I have spares in my house somewhere. But they don’t feel right like my old classic.” “You have a house?” “You’re in it right now, if you’d care to notice.” Gene looked around. She was in a house. It was beautifully furnished and had nice silk sheets on the bed. Gene felt a little stupid, but she was a cow before and knew nothing of human life. That, she guessed, could be momentarily forgiven. “Grim…can I ask you a question?” Grim paused. “Ok. Ask away.” “How does the Grim Reaper have a house, silk sheets, and a window?” The Grim Reaper of death tilted his head, or at least the absence of light that sat atop his presumed shoulders did. “Ummm...that’s a very unusual question. Let’s discuss this over a light lunch.” 2

The Reaper of Death’s kitchen had a rather Victorian feel except for a photo of a street, which, to Gene, looked like what would’ve been her ultimate hell as a cow. There was a large wooden sided fridge, complete with gold handles, and a large wood fired stove. All emanated a kind of cosiness, and didn’t feel one bit too arctic or unpleasant. The Grim Reaper –as a person- seemed to be a quite likeable bloke, now that she knew him. 

Gene stared at the beverage in front of her. It was in a very ornate teacup. It tasted nutty and bitter. “What is with a reaper of death who lives in a house?” she finally asked. “Well I have to live somewhere. Mainly it is because I experience time differently to you. This, where you are, is a pocket universe. Or at least it kind of is. The world that you know moves at the pace that it does, while this universe moves at a pace much like your universe does. But this universe’s time collapses in on itself. One day here is equivalent to a single day in your universe. But here’s the thing. Since this universe’s time collapses on itself, I could spend five million hypothetical years here and come back to your world and not pass a day since I originally left five million years ago. And every day here is the same. If there were birds here, they will forever be flying the same path every day. But there aren’t any birds. I’m pretty sure they were never here to begin with.” “You mean you don’t know?” “Well, I’m too busy to know and every day us the same.” “So what is there?” “There are trees. Lots and lots of lovely trees. There’s also a nice sweeping lawn.” “So no animals?” “I’m sure there are. You know, nobody really asks me about outside…” “Can I go outside?” “ummm….sure…” Gene stood up and finished the rest of the bitter beverage. It kind of did taste good. The grim reaper pointed to a large, ornately carved door. “There is out” Gene walked towards it and grasped the large golden handle. The door swung open easily and she was soon observing a large sweeping lawn and a lovely forest. “Spend as long as you want out there.” “What if I was to stay here for the rest of my life?” “You wouldn’t die, but if you did you’d come back as a zebra.” “What’s a zebra? How do you know that I’d come back as a zebra?” this she pronounced as zeybra. “I don’t know. I was just thinking that you’d look funny as a zebra.” Gene scowled at the Grim Reaper. “Do you mind if I call you Grimmy?” The Grim reaper tilted his head. “Odd…” Gene shrugged. She had the feeling that he wouldn’t mind. It occurred to her that he was kind of lonely and this was the most attention he’d ever gotten. “You’re right, you know.” Gene looked into the shadow that was his head, “Right? About what?” “I am lonely. I can read your thoughts.” “Whaaaaaaa?” “Oh, yes. Usually animals and humans beg for their lives or prattle on about their lives…it varies….I had to sit through nine days of boredom when an accountant was trying to convince me why I couldn’t take him. “ “Were you convinced?” “Yes. He got hit by a car. It was really boring.” Gene laughed softly. “Seriously, don’t you have a buddy somewhere? Perhaps in a caravan? A house? A sewer?” The grim reaper shook his head. “I’m The Grim Reaper. Reapers usually don’t have friends.” “There’s more than one?” “Oh, yes. There’s more than one of you, just as there is more than one of us.” “So what are you?” The Grim Reaper tilted his head. “Curious. No one has ever talked to me like this. Always begging for an extra three hours of life, always trying to bribe me…” “Well..? And how do I know all this stuff? I was a cow, and a touch can’t impart so much information….” Death shrugged and looked out of the window, rather wistfully. “I guess it wouldn’t hurt to tell you everything. You won’t remember this when you are reborn, so…” 3 0604 hours, 2000 minutes, 5 days The day starts always with the sunrise. Oh, the loveliness of it all. Well this particular morning was how you or I could not ever expect. Those were the days when the Earth was fresh, when it had only seen to the beginning of five days. These were days of extreme instability; the very days where animals and plants could not live or survive. But on the fourth second of the sixth hour of what you could call morning for clarity’s sake, the god network formed. The god network is god. It is what you or I would call god. The god network is basically a formation of energy- very much like the Milky Way. This formation of energy is everything. This energy is dispersed in the form of people, of animals, of toilet seats, of everything around us. When these objects die out or are absolutely obliterated, the remaining energy disperses but eventually regroups and is distributed accordingly. This energy never dies. But once it is departed from the god network, it is always departed. The network practically doesn’t exist as a single energy cloud any more. It is as it is known of as literally. It is now a network of energy. But this is where I come in. Our job, as reapers, is to take the dead and return them to the site where the god network in a single form existed, where they would be wiped clean. The knowledge dissipates into a place called The Archive, while the energy of the deceased re-joins the flow temporarily before getting directed to a new form. And yes, about this network…I and about one million other reapers were the first to break free from the god network. We were practically given immortality as the atoms that make us will never break apart. Our bodily functions do not deteriorate, and we practically don’t have to shower or brush our teeth... And each one of us is unique. Our powers are almost limitless. I happened to be the seventy fifth reaper, so I’m a bit older than most. I take care of business in what you call Queensland, which we call Sector 6. The first reaper takes care of business in north Scotland, also known as Sector 3. This place for some reason is special to him, and he’s been there since the dawn of time. He’s not a nice fellow, and he doesn’t reap like the rest of us do. There’s nothing that interests him much, and he’s not as nice as some of us. But he is fluent with a lot of psionic abilities. He appears to you and I as…an odd fellow with bull’s horns. You would know of him as the devil. 4 Gene looked at Death in the eye. “The devil? Why? He’s a reaper?” The Grim reaper nodded. “I did say that, yes…” “So you take care of business here? Well…I thought reapers would be cold and emotionless. You’re quite the opposite.” “Well, yeah. I was the seventy fifth reaper…and you know what? I could spend eternity here talking to you.” “How sweet. Look at that. The Grim Reaper is complimenting me.” “But I’m serious. Currently, you’re in a state where you are neither dead nor living. You are just a cloud of energy, sitting in my house.” Gene gave up standing and sat down. “Grimmy, you still haven’t answered my question.” “What was that again?” “How you have a house and stuff.” The grim reaper nodded and sat down next to her. “Oh, yes. That. I have a house because i just do. As I said, my powers are limitless. This is all energy around you, formed to fit my specifications. True, this energy could’ve once been a person, a chair, a lake…but everything loses its characteristics and reverts to its original form. So I’m not committing a crime by having a house. Not really.” “So now I’m just a cloud of energy entertaining you? Wouldn’t there be a lot of reaping to be done in Queensland?” “Yeah, I know, but sector 6 can wait. I can spend a million years here, remember. I’ll just go back when I’m bored. ”

Gene sighed. “Well I said this place’s time collapses in on itself and every day is the same. But, I guess you’re right. I should bring you back to your world. Now I’ve probably explained too much so I think I’ll just shut up for a bit.” Gene laid back on the grass and looked up at the sky. “What will happen? When I get back?” “I cannot shift time. I cannot just insert you into the world now as an adult. But what I will do is give you a family. You will be a baby.” Gene sat up. “A baby? How long do I have to spend being a baby?” The Grim Reaper chuckled. “A long time. But I will grant you these memories, I guess. I might drop by sometimes too. I’ve been spending a lot of time reaping, and nobody is really interesting to talk to. I had a donkey bite me once, and when I turned him into a human, he kicked me. It didn’t hurt because I don’t feel pain, but he kicked me!” Gene laughed. “What about other cows?” “They’re usually ok, yeah. In fact I have a lot of friends who think cows are the way to go.” Gene laughed. “But isn’t everyone a cow sooner or later?” Death nodded. “Yeah. But it depends where you start in the cycle. And where you live. There are a lot of plants and animals to cycle through before you become a cow.” Gene lay down again. “So when am I leaving?” “Soon. Now, if you want. I don’t really want you to leave but…you can if you want to.” “I’m touched. But I guess I should be leaving. I have years to be a baby, after all.” Grim nodded and held her hand. “Another day at the office, I guess.” Part 2: Gene woke up. It was like any other motion, except she was in a cot. She tried to sit up, but failed. She was lacking in upper body strength. She looked around the room and found cute little bears surrounding the cot. It was quite an expensive looking cot, and was made of a deep brown wood with a very fine grain. All was polished to a gleam. Gene lay down on the mattress and looked for a sign of life. And that’s so far, folks. Welcome to lunacy.

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