Word Count: 87,000
Forget Christianity. As a matter of fact, forget every religion that humans believe in. There is only one God per universe, and ours can't keep up with the ever-increasing population rate, while still attempting to manage the evil that plagues our world. He has created a system that can, or so he thought.
In 2006, an armed robbery critically injured Clayton and took the life of his six-year-old brother, Joey. He then struggles to find meaning in life while dealing with the loss of his brother and absence of a father, whom he lost earlier to cancer. He is a self-proclaimed agnostic but desperately seeks closure regarding his little brother’s ill-timed death.
Meanwhile, Joey’s soul begins the intricate process of reincarnation that is well hidden from today’s society. Our God has created a multi-layered system that can automatically recycle souls, erase their previous life, and assign a new host and destination for their next life on Earth.
Clayton, only eighteen years old, succumbs to the early stages of depression. He turns to drugs and alcohol for immediate escape but constantly longs for the bond his family once had. Only after discovering signs from a hidden afterlife, he realizes the family he yearns for can be recreated with his girlfriend, Brittney.
God’s system is supposedly impeccable, but an erratic malfunction occurs in Purgatory (where the system is located). Joey’s soul is accidentally sent into the body of Clayton’s newborn son. This mistake will affect the entire world and only Clayton has the power to stop it, even if he doesn’t know it yet.
“Joey! Get your fucking ass over here right now!” Mother screamed at Joey, my ADD six year old brother. “Don’t make me tell you again.”
It was Black Friday at Greenwood Park Mall and to say it was a bit over-crowded was an understatement. It was like an emo infested mosh pit, except there was no shitty music, just the sounds of fiends scavenging the mall for any type of sale or discount. Mother, who’s never afraid to speak her mind, seemed scared she was going to lose Joey again, just like she did two years ago at the State Fair. Memories of that chaotic scene probably replayed in her head as she waited for Joey to return to her clammy, terrifying grip.
“Joey-- I am going to count to three. If you are not next to me, I am going to spank your ass so hard–you won’t be able to sit on Santa’s lap until next year!” she yelled toward his direction.
As usual, Mother’s filthy mouth seemed to shock shoppers. I could only imagine, as they most likely stared off in disgust. But my mother’s cold eyes could over-power anyone’s judging attitude, like an un-even battle in tug-of-war. By now, Joey hopefully knew she wasn’t playing. This was exactly what happened to him when she finally found him at the fair. He got his ass welted, right in front of everyone. But, Joey simply couldn’t help it. The countless amounts of Christmas lights and holiday decor outside of the store had caught his attention a little bit better than the lotions our mom sampled at Bath and Body Works.