It seems to have been a long time since I posted a story in response to the weekly prompts at ‘Inspiration Monday’. The prompt that appealed to me this week was, ‘Funeral cut short.’
It’s Not My Time Yet
He’d been in this queue for what seemed like days now. Every time he tried to ask one of the officials what the hold up was he’d been greeted by a smile and non-committal words of reassurance, his patience was wearing thin. Then the queue started to move and eventually he found himself at the front.
“Good morning sir. I do apologise for the wait, we’ve had a glitch with our computers, on top of which this is always our busiest time of the year. If I could just take your name please?”
“It’s Jones, Peter Jones, but I’m not sure what’s happening. Why am I here?”
“Just a moment Mr. Jones while I find you on our screen. Once I’ve got your details I will be able to explain everything to you. Let me see ….. Jones you say….. Peter Jones. I’m sorry for this wait sir but we don’t seem to have a Peter Jones in our system. If you could just give me some more details Mr. Jones. When did it actually take place?”
“When did what take place?”
“Your death Mr. Jones. When exactly did you die?
“Oh that. Let me see … it would have been Monday. Yes that’s right, Monday morning. I’d just popped out of the office to grab myself a coffee. My mind was on that blooming report I was behind with and bang! Stepped right out in front of a bus. Next thing I know I’m standing in a long queue looking up at these grand pearly gates.”
“Ah yes, found it. Traffic accident, 10.34am on Hackney High Road, 43-year-old Simon Jones knocked down by a London bus, number 27. Our records show you’ve lived a fairly blameless life, one or two slight indiscretions, which we won’t go into, so this is the right place for you.”
“Except my name’s not Simon Jones, it’s Peter Jones and I’m only 36 years old not 43.”
“Oh dear, this is all very disconcerting Mr. Jones. It would appear the wrong Mr. Jones, that is you, was knocked down last Monday. On behalf of all of us here at the Pearly Gates I can only apologise. I understand that the Grim Reaper has not been sleeping well recently and has been making a few mistakes. You’re the third one this week.”
“So what happens now? Have you still got room for me?”
“Oh no, Mr. Jones, we can’t possibly take you in, you’re time hasn’t yet come. No, we will simply have to send you back. Let me see, your funeral is due to take place on Thursday. My goodness that’s today, we must hurry. I will arrange transport straight away. Now when you get back you’ll be inside your coffin Mr. Jones, make sure you shout and bang on the sides really loud, that should get the funeral cut short, we don’t want any nasty mishaps do we. All the best Mr. Jones, it’s been nice meeting you. I look forward to seeing you again soon … very soon.”