Mary and the Dark God

“I saw God the other day.”

A mixture of curiosity and concern comes over Dr. Stevenson’s face.

“Did you now? What did he look like?”

Mary can tell the doctor doesn’t believe her. She pulls her legs up to her chest and hugs them tightly, as if they might run off to war any minute like most boys do nowadays.

“It doesn’t matter. I’m the only one who can see him. He’s a dark God of fire, but he’s not evil!”

Dr. Stevenson definitely didn’t like that. He never likes it when she talks about fire. Or God.

“Mary, you remember what we talked about? It’s important that you understand that fire can hurt others. You don’t want to hurt anyone else, right? “

Her legs have become a veritable bastion against these conversations.

From between the window of her ankles, Mary squeaks, “yes sir…”

But the doctor can’t know how beautiful of a god he is. Though he burns everything, he has wisdom to know that if you burn it all there’s nothing left to set fire to. He is a just God, who always keeps a hearth going and makes way for new things. Besides, the old subway on 4th was old and no one liked it anyways. Or the people who worked there. Especially Becky.

Dr. Stevenson finally breaks the silence. He’s good at that.

“Is this the god that told you to…do what you did before? “

Mary doesn’t answer.

“Mary, please answer the question.”

Mary doesn’t answer.

“Mary, I don’t want to have to send you back so early. I like this time with you. You like it to, right?”

The doctor’s office was very nice. It was covered in a warm shaggy carpet that dug between your toes, and instead of walls it had bookshelves and windows. Soft curtains hung by the windows, but Mary would tear them out if she could. They were too thin to actually block anything so they needed to go. The bookshelves were lined in both grown up books about boring things, and fun things like coloring, mom and dad’s, houses, and toys.

Mary forced herself up and pushed a smile to her face.

“yeah, I like it here! Can we talk about something else?”

“well sure. You can talk about anything here. But I do want to hear more about this God of yours eventually.“

Mary stifled a laugh, and tried to cover it with a cough. Though the doctor hadn’t see the God, the God had already seen the doctor. God Didn’t like him. Even though he was nice to Mary, she knew that God was never wrong about his judgment. Dr Stevenson had to burn too.


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