This picks up where yesterday's story left off. I don't know where this is going, I'm just trying to force myself into writing for at least 30 minutes a day as an exercise, and somehow I found myself rewriting part of the book of Genesis.
I rode a few hours east until I got just outside of Flagstaff, and pulled over to watch the sunset and think. It wasn’t out of the ordinary for Lucky, or Lucypher if we wanted to be particularly precise about it, to show up unannounced, but this time I hadn’t seen him in years. I wondered what he wanted. He always wants something, and he usually gets it. And it’s usually not good either to be the one who gives it to him or to be between him and his goals. It’s better to sit on the sidelines and watch the carnage, hoping not to get too much splatter on your shoes.
That’s what I’ve done for years – watch. I’ve watched people grow from just a couple to billions of huddled masses, yearning for something or another. I’ve watched people kill each other over pennies in the street and I’ve watched people give their last breath to help a stranger. And through it all, ever since the Garden, Lucky has been a constant. Always around, always goading something into action. I never know why or what he wants, I just watch.
But this little interaction was different. This was the first time in millennia that Lucky had been goading me. He wanted me to do something, and whatever it was, I didn’t want to do it. The last time I did anything he wanted it didn’t turn out so well for me, so I’ve tried to steer clear of his maneuvering since then. So I sat, and the sun set, and I watched the shadows lengthen and the desert turn from a superheated wasteland to a patchwork canvas of light and rolling shadows. I like sunsets, they carry the memory of the day before and the promise of the day to come.
Eve always preferred sunrises. She said they were more anticipatory, like a held breath before the day explodes like a sneeze all over the world.
Yeah, Eve’s real too. It all is, except for the bit about Lucky being a serpent. That was a little bit of poetic license on Mo’s part, but he was always creeped out by snakes and I think the whole serpent thing was just a little underhanded way of making sure people overall didn’t like snakes any more than he did. Really, Lucky was our friend, and was in the Garden with us from the very beginning. Several of the archangels used to come visit in the Garden: Gabriel, Airel, Jophiel and Metatron were there the most, but after we left the Garden we saw more of Azrael than we really wanted to.
So yeah, Lucky was around the Garden. And we really did all live there with all the beasts in perfect harmony and everybody lived forever and nobody died and it was all sweetness and light. But that can’t sustain. It’s not a natural state of being, and Dad understood that. And he gave Lucky the hardest job, because Lucky was his favored child, and he knew that Lucky would do it without question, no matter what it would cost him in the long run.
So Lucky gave Eve the apple, and she shared it with me, and we ate it, and got kicked out of the Garden, and headed off to the land of Nod and all that stuff you’ve read about since you were a tadpole. And it almost killed Lucky, not just to be banished from Dad’s side forever, but to have to trick Eve and me, who were his best friends, into doing something that would make our lives pretty awful for a very long time. After a long time and more than a few beers, I managed to forgive Lucky and we reached an understanding of sorts, but Eve never let it go. Leaving the Garden broke something inside her that never healed, even after all these years.
Oh, I guess by now you’ve figured out that we’re immortal. Gaining knowledge of good and evil didn’t do anything to change the whole living forever thing we started off with, even though we didn’t pass that on completely to our children. They lived a good long time, don’t get me wrong. And I watched more than one century turn with my kids, but eventually they grew old and died. And I watched more and more centuries turn without them. And no matter what my buddy Clive Lewis wrote about all men being “sons of Adam,” it didn’t change the fact that my direct sons and daughters were gone.
So I sat on a little hill just west of Flagstaff watching the sun go down and trying to figure out what Lucky was looking for. What did he want me to do? He had suggested California, so of course I headed East, but is that what he wanted me to do in the first place? Lucky was the original trickster, so it wasn’t out of the question for him to double- or even triple-think me into going exactly where he wanted me to go.
As I sat there pondering, the first star of the night came winking into view in the east, and I could feel my answer. East. I had to go East, and I had to find Eve. This was gonna get ugly.