Instruments: 1d6, Card Deck
You have made your journey to the Land of the Dead, bargained with it's Lord, and have been granted the chance to bring back your loved one. Now you must leave and return to the land of the living, and no matter what tempts you, you must not look back.
Game Content WarningsThese are content warnings that are from the game prompts and are present in all playthroughs.
Playthrough Content WarningsThese are content warnings specific to this playthrough only.
Word Count: 1,142 Played: Nov 27, 2023
Roll: 1, a parental figure,
Ms Birdie Feather, the elderly hippy lady from next door. She used to baby-sit me when I was younger and my single mother was at work.
She slipped and hit her head on the pavement during winter, refused to go to the hospital, and died later of a brain swelling.
It wasn't her time, and if I had just made her go she would have lived.
Jack of Hearts: An item of otherworldly origins
Before us in the caves there was a bright and shining harp, its strings were clear like crystal and its body was made of gold, delicately embossed with golden roses.
I thought it was beautiful, but Ms Birdie laughed and called it tacky.
Ace of Clubs: A strange landmark or place
There were 7 sets of columns carved in the Greco-Roman style with silk drapes across them like curtains. Each one was a sheer color of the rainbow, embroidered with beads, beetle carapaces, and butterfly wings, starting with purple and ending in red.
Ms Birdie almost let go of my hand to touch them, but I held onto her tight. We made our way through them without any other fuss.
2 of Diamonds: A creature or a psychopomp
We reached a cavern with a beam of light shining from above and a sphinx was sunbathing on a rock.
Ms Birdie got excited, exclaiming how much she loved riddles, but the sphinx rolled her eyes saying those were only for the ones entering, not leaving. She yawned with her large lion teeth and told us not to bother her again while she was napping.
3 of Hearts: An item of otherworldly origins
Roll: 6, Temptation
Before us was a large mirror made of polished and engraved obsidian. I could see myself perfectly in it despite the dim light, but Ms Birdie wasn't behind me.
I had to stop myself from whipping around and instead I called out to her, she squeezed my hand and said, "I'm still here dear, don't you worry."
I kept my eyes closed and felt along the wall for the next room out of the caves.
3 of Clubs: A strange place or landmark
We reached an area that was far colder than the rest. I could see my breath in front of me and the walls and ground were slick with ice.
A statue of a woman pouring water was frozen in the middle of the room. Her eyes were inlaid with rubies that seemed to follow me wherever I went.
I felt Ms Birdie slip and fall and I wanted to turn to help her, but I couldn't. She picked herself up and I had her hold me by the hips as we waddled like penguins passed the lady and out to where it was warmer.
7 of Clubs: A strange place or landmark
There was no roof, or ceiling or surface, or whatever it's called in caves above us in the next room. We could see the night sky openly and clearly, and it was so much more beautiful than what we could see in the city.
We watched as it moved and shifted fast like a planetarium, and Ms Birdie started to tell me about the time she and her first husband took an RV out to the country and they camped in the middle of a farmer's field until they were chased off in the morning.
She pointed out the constellations, the comets, and any shooting star as they went whizzing by.
7 of Spades: A Spirit of the Dead
The next room there was a long line of people, wearing clothing from all parts of the world and from all times. I saw clothing from the far future and the far past, ones from places I'd never heard.
All of them were holding amphoras with scenes painted on them that moved like a zoetrope.
One man held his up to us, and it became clear that it was his life's story, from birth to death. He asked us if he knew who he was, but neither Ms Birdie nor I did. He looked sad and continued his wait in the line as we continued forward.
King of Hearts An otherworldly Item
In the next room there was a large fountain about waist high. The top of it was one large circular disk, the center of which had a very gentle spout flowing water, and if I didn't see it falling off the sides I would have thought it was just glass.
But it was on even further inspection that I realized that was correct. Over the sides the 'water' fell into little marbles which collected at the bottom in a basin. All of which were perfectly spherical and reflected the light in an array of rainbows.
We stood watching it for a while before eventually moving on.
King of Diamonds: A creature or a psychopomp
A short, baby-faced man in robes, golden sandals, and curly hair which always seemed to glow in back-lit lighting, approached us.
He held a clipboard and a long feathered quill, and began to ask us an array of questions about who we were, why we were here, and what we thought we were doing.
I could barely answer all of them and just held out the letter that the Lord of the Dead had given to me. The man read it over, sighed, and systematically checked things off on his clipboard before giving the letter back to me and telling me to be quick about everything.
Ace of Hearts: An otherworldly item
The last thing we saw as we approached the Land of the Living was a set of beaded curtains like the ones Ms Birdie hung in her kitchen door frame.
When I touched them each one sounded like a harp being plucked, and we stood there a couple minutes making music on the beads, talking about how that guy could learn to be patient.
We laughed as we passed through them and onward into the light.
It was just starting to be morning when we emerged from the caves. We took 10 steps forward and waited another two minutes before I felt safe enough to finally embrace her.
She looked just like she did when she was alive, and we both knew that we had many more years together.