Two years ago, something horrible happened. My favourite author, and biggest creative inspiration, Terry Pratchett, passed away. Looking back, my life has changed a lot over the last two years, primarily for the better, and a big part of that is because I have so much more focus now, so much more creative drive, that I simply didn’t have before I read Discworld. To mark two years since his passing, I have written this, based on his work, which I hope illustrates how brilliant he was, and how much of an impression he left on myself and the rest of his fans.
I HAVEN’T GOT ALL DAY, YOU KNOW, said Death, looking, as sternly as one might with no eyeballs, at the old man in the black hat.
“Oh, bugger off a moment,” the old man said, looking at Death cheekily, fearlessly staring down those eternal eye-sockets, with a damning blue flame in each, “You said I could have one last meal and I intend to enjoy it.”
“I thought you’d appreciate it anyway, you like a good curry,” he said.
I NEVER EAT ON THE JOB, said Death, COMMITING THE SOULS OF THE LOST, THE PASSED, AND THE CURSED TO PURGATORY AND BEYOND DOES NOTHING FOR MY DIGESTION.
“Are you sure about that?” The old man asked, “There’s a chip going, if you want it.”
OH, GO ON THEN, said Death.
Lowering his spectacles, the old man looked at Death with some regard, curiously examining the Anthropomorphic Personification that sat opposite him, picking bits of potato out of its exposed teeth.
“So, is it like I imagined then?” he asked, “Will I cross the dark desert, to find exactly what I’ve always believed the afterlife to be?”
A TYPICALLY CRUDE, HUMAN WAY OF PUTTING IT, BUT ULTIMATELY, AND FINALLY, YES, said Death.
“I never believed in God, you know” the old man said, cautiously.
THEN YOU MAY EXPECT SEVERAL ANGRY LETTERS FROM HIM, said Death, ALL THIS ATHEISM BUSINESS RECENTLY HAS GIVEN THE POOR FELLOW A BIT OF AN IDENTITY CRISIS.
Death regarded the old man’s plate.
LOOK, HAVE YOU FINISHED? YOU’RE JUST USING THE LAST CHIP TO SCRAPE UP ALL THE SAUCE. I HAVE A BUSY SCHEDULE COMING UP, 2016 IS GOING TO BE A BIG YEAR.
“Fine, fine, I’m done, I suppose,” said the old man sadly.
“What an embuggerance, I suppose that’s it for little old me then?” he continued.
OH, I WOULDN’T SAY THAT, said Death, NOBODY IS TRULY GONE UNTIL THEIR RIPPLES FADE AWAY.
“That sounds familiar,” said the old man, his memory better than it had been in a long while.
I WOULDN’T NORMALLY DO THIS, DYING IS MEANT TO BE SUCH A SOMBRE, SERIOUS AFFAIR, BUT YOU DID ME THE LUXURY OF CREATING ME SO I SUPPOSE I CAN MAKE AN EXCEPTION. CLOSE YOUR EYES, AND TAKE A LOOK AT THIS.
The old man, seeing no reason to argue with Death itself, did as he was told, and was taken aback. He witnessed the future. An outpouring of messages, of tributes, of crying readers, friends and family, of fan drawings and writings, and people enriched by the wonders of his works.
“Oh my”, he said, “They’re all very nice, aren’t they?” the old man said, as he opened his eyes, and began to follow Death across the large, dark desert.
INDEED. THEY ARE CERTAINLY… ENTHUSIASTIC, said Death.
“What happens now then?” asked the old man, as they moved out of earshot.
I WILL HAVE TO BREAK THE NEWS TO THEM, Death said, THEY WILL HAVE TO LEARN THERE WILL BE NO MORE BOOKS, NO MORE YOU, AND NO MORE ME.
“Dearie me,” said the old man, “They seem rather fond of us, I don’t think that’ll go down too well at all, you know!”
The skeletal figure paused.
NEITHER DOES MEXICAN FOOD, Death said, finally, YET I HAVE LEARNED TO LIVE WITH THAT.
The two figures, the creator and the created, marched into the great finality, and forever out of the narrative.
The End – GNU Terry Pratchett
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