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SPARK » Theresa Kulstad andJewel Beth Davis

Theresa Kulstad and
Jewel Beth Davis

Withdrawal
By Jewel Beth Davis

Inspiration piece

When the Blue Angel walked into the throne room to check on the Creator, he was concerned to see Him reclining on His throne, a writhing form of energy. What in God’s name was he going to do with God? Adonai’s health, which had always been robust for trillions of years, seemed to be on a decline. God’s appetite was now nonexistent and though Malach Kochol tried to tempt Him with chocolate rugelach, blueberry blintzes or kishke, His favorites, Adonai just shook His head and pushed the plate away. He wasn’t sleeping either and seemed to be in pain or materially uncomfortable. Kochol knew the cause but what he or anyone could do about it was another matter.

The Creator must have sensed his presence for he rolled over and nearly fell off the throne.

“What the Hell is going on around here? Where is Varode?” HaShem said to Kochol.  “I’ve been waiting on her for eons. She was supposed to come right back with my scratch tickets. Where in the name of …where is she?”

Malach Kochol looked blank. He had been wondering the same thing himself for a while. He scanned Hashem’s holy chamber as if Varode might suddenly appear. No dice. Bopkiss. Kochol had been dreading this moment and wondered if he would survive it.  He shrugged his blue feathery shoulders trying to maintain even a small degree of composure.

“That’s it?” the Holy One said. “That’s your response to the Holiest Being in the universe?”

Kochol wondered what the hell he was supposed to say. He had no idea what had happened to Varode. Zip. How many options were there? She couldn’t get hurt or die. She was an angel for Heaven’s sake. All she’d had to do was pick up a ton of scratch tickets from earth and come back. Not a rough assignment. It was strange because Pink was usually so efficient and took care of everything in a timely manner. Malach Kochol was trying to refrain from having blasphemous thoughts but if God hadn’t sent Pink to do such an unnecessary errand, nay, an absurd errand, she wouldn’t be missing in the first place. All these eons of Adonai’s never-ending mainly clean history and now suddenly, God develops a gambling addiction. Kochol raised his gray eyes to meet God’s and spoke.

“In all truth and sincerity, Adonai, I have no idea where Varode is.” Kochol tried not to cringe. He made an effort to say more but found nothing more to say. His mind was a clean white board and he felt a little panicky about his dearth of ideas.

The Holy One was not pleased. God was feeling the physical and mental effects of withdrawal. Her temper was barely under control. She had been snappish with everyone. She thought back to several heaven or hell decisions She’d made in the last week or so and wondered whether perhaps She’d been too precipitous in dropping so many souls directly into Hell. Oh well, too late. No use whining over lost souls. She had to get her hands on those scratch tickets. She realized She was out of control but thought that if She could just get a few scratch tickets, things would smooth out. She was sure of it.

Adonai took a deep breath and as She let it out, the Blue Angel watched electric shocks and lightning fly indiscriminately around the chamber and beyond. Kochol ducked behind the Aron Kodesh. He wondered what all the new souls in training and the old souls would make of all the quakes and pyrotechnics.

“Find her,” God roared. “Now.”

Kochol stood up from behind the ark, out of balance. “I’ll do my best.”

“Bring her and all the tickets back immediately. If your best doesn’t result in that, then your best isn’t good enough.”

Kochol swallowed hard and then said, “Um, Hashem?”

Adonai glared at the Blue Angel, his orbs burning into the flesh beneath the feathers. A few feathers sizzled and turned black, giving off an acrid odor.

Kochol brushed the singed feathers off him and, as Mrs. MacBeth had suggested in Shakespeare’s play, screwed his courage to the sticking point. “Do You think maybe You would consider letting go of the scratch ticket ob…interest, and if necessary, getting some help with it?”

“And what do you think My reply would be to that?” Hashem smiled sweetly.

“No?” Kochol ventured.

“HELL NO. Now get out before I sizzle the rest of your plumage.” With that, the Holy One turned his back on Kochol and lie back down, with one arm thrown over his eyes and the other hand making scratching noises on the back of the throne.

“Oh God,” Kochol said quietly, “Let me help you. Let someone help you.” But there was no response. To God, Kochol was no longer there. No one was there. The Master of the Universe was alone.

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