Christmas Hiatus: Unintended History

The blog is on hiatus for the Christmas season. New stories will return in January. Here’s one from the archives:

Early one morning, Alfred awoke with fledgling resolve and knelt by the side of his bed. He offered an apologetic prayer to whatever god might still be paying attention to him, and confessed what he had done. He was not evil, he insisted. A liar, yes. A thief, indirectly. Few would argue, if they heard everything, that he didn’t deserve jail, or at least a good talking to. He had not intended his life to turn out this way, but it had nonetheless. Yet from today he would find a different life.

The prayer bounced off the gates barring Alfred’s upward path and floated into a little-used channel, one that sat between the infrared spectrum and the smell of fresh rain. Alfred’s remorse wove its way past virtue and lemongrass, darted around gravitational law and the sense of separation before coming to rest upon a few of the latter digits close to the end of pi.

There it sat, unheeded. It went unnoticed for the rest of that day, as Alfred made the first of his good decisions. No note was made of it years later, as Alfred died and was fairly judged. Nor was his prayer noticed when the sun died and took everyone with it. Aeons passed.

At the beginning of the Enthalpic Age a transdimensional metamathemarchaeologist chanced upon the prayer. It was placed in a museum, the only surviving remnant of a humanity long forgotten. Alfred’s apology is now our message to the universe.

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