Skip to content

10 Minutes – The Last Second In the Universe

Standing here now, at the end of everything, I realised again that maybe being immortal wasn’t all it was cracked up to be. All those plays, movies, holographic shows and ads hyping it up like the best thing to ever happen to humankind – they were all wrong. There was nothing glorious about living past everyone else. No advantages to be had.

Especially today. Although the sunset sure was pretty.

I was President of the United States of America once, and President of the United World Alliance twice. I’d like to think that I did well each time, ending World War 3 the first time around and preventing the Galaxy War on my third run. Those times living longer than anyone else had paid off, and I had been proud to be human.

There were other times, too, when being immortal did seem like a gift. The birth of my great-great-great-great-great-granddaughter. Aliens visiting Earth for the first time, and brokering the Peace Treaty which bought us a new age of prosperity and technological advances we had only dreamed off. All those things had happened centuries after I should have died, but I had been allowed to witness them anyway.

But all the good days didn’t outweigh the bad ones. The truly horrific ones. OverΒ the past millions of years I haven’t forgotten the death of my first husband, Michael, Β or the death of my second one, George. I’m still hurting for my wife, Aleesha, who died in child birth. For all those children and relatives I’ve had to bury. I’ve been to the edge of the universe hundreds of times in my life, and the pain never stopped once. With every new race I discovered, I wished Aleesha had been with me to see the miracle for herself. With every new car I bought I was reminded of George, and his love for every type of vehicle. Every time I ate chocolate ice cream I wished Michael could have been there with me.

I’ve led a long, long life, longer than any human should, and all I remembered now at the end of times was pain. The little things I used to enjoy but which only hurt now, because the people I used to enjoy them with could no longer share them with me.

Before me, the last existing star in the universe expanded. Any moment now it would explode, swallowing the last of the universe and then what would happen? If God was finally feeling merciful – and I doubted his existence after all this time – he’d let me go with it.

For all our advances in technology and medicine we never did figure out the secret to immortality. All those people who had paid a fortune, who were forced to throw themselves into unspeakable debt just to pay for the treatment, had all regretted it.

For all our advances and knowledge, I still didn’t know why I was immortal. It was the one thing I had wanted to know, and the one thing that had always eluded me.

Silence filled the remaining universe for a brief second, right before the star exploded and white hot pain seared through me. It wasn’t the first time I died, but I prayed to whatever else was left that it’d be the last.

———————

All of my 10-Minute stories are improvised, unplanned, and unedited apart from spelling and grammar mistakes. The idea is to kick-start the dreaded Monday with a short, creative exercise without thinking about it, and simply writing for the sake of writing.

For all other 10-Minute shorts, take a look here.

Published inMonday InspirationUncategorized

21 Comments

  1. Wow, wonderful story! I can’t believe you created all of that in just ten minutes! I’m so impressed! I don’t know if I’d like being immortal for all of the reasons your character explained. It seems good in theory but I feel as though immortality would get old…even if I didn’t. Great job πŸ™‚

    • Thank you! That’s almost too much praise for me to handle on an early Monday morning πŸ˜€ I’ll have to admit though that this wasn’t completely improvised – Faye at Writerology.net gave me the idea a couple of days ago and I thought it’d make a perfect Monday post πŸ™‚

      • Whether it was improvised or not, it was brilliant and deserved all the praise! πŸ˜€

  2. Oh, Sarina, you have a real gem here. I love how you’ve encapsulated the wonder and the tragedy of living forever in such a short space and time limit. And that last lineβ€”perfect! Made me shiver. Bravo πŸ™‚

  3. Wow! I loved the story! It was magical, heart wrenching and so many other words that would take way too long to write in such a short comment box. This must be one of my favourite short stories that I have ever read!
    I want to know so much more about the past lives, past loves. I read it on my break at work and the world around me was forgotten as I got lost in you words. It took me a few minutes to recover. Just amazing!

  4. What a beautiful piece! Your talent astounds me! The way you captured the emotional pain of immortality was so moving. I felt attached to every moment of it and I want to hear more about all those lives that came before. Thank you for sharing your gift. You are blessed!

    • I don’t know what to say, thank you! ^-^ The comments I’ve received on this have left me speechless, thank you for reading πŸ™‚

  5. To use the word in its old fashioned context–this is excellent. I’ve been reading SF for 50+ years and this harks way back to the old masters of the SF one-page short. You’ve encapsulated Concept, Style, Narrative and Character. Worth a submission to an SF mag/ website!

    • Thank you <3 I'm not used to writing SF but want to do it more often – especially after the comments I've received on this! I wouldn't know where to start, but if you know of any good ones I'd appreciate the recommendation πŸ™‚

  6. […] Monday and Tuesday were spent doing just that – wrapping presents, one job application which took up the whole morning, writing more Christmas cards, preparing updates on here, and of course I had my usual Monday 10-Minute posts to do as well – which, by the way, you guys really blew me away this weekΒ with your comments and you all made my week <3 If you haven’t read this week’s post already, you can do so here. […]

  7. […] serial for you! A little while ago I really wanted to expand on one of my 10Minute shorts (this one, if you’re curious) and now I’ve finally had the time to do […]

  8. kay kay

    It was interesting reading this after Immortal 1,2, and 3. I’m amazed your idea came from a simple prompt!

    • That’s an interesting order to read it in for sure! It makes the most sense, though, since the Immortal posts are the beginning and this one is the very end.
      Thank you, I’m happy you enjoyed it! πŸ™‚

  9. Oh wow, this is fantastic! The end of the universe and an immortal. I’m intrigued.

    • Thank you!! <3 I know it's been a while since I posted this, but I'm still overwhelmed with the response!

Get a tea and a cookie, and let's chat!

%d bloggers like this: