Deep Space Short Stories Main Page
Last Saturday, God phoned me up.
I'd just sat down, and thought, "Right now, I don't have to do anything - I've got an entire half-hour free. I mean, if someone rang me up now, and said 'Could you spare a moment of your time', then I could." And then the phone rang, and I thought, "Funny." So I picked it up, and said, "Hello?"
The first thing I noticed was that in the background, there was a noise kind of like a whole load of choirs going "Laaaah" a lot.
And then this bloke says, "Hello, who's that?" in a voice that was kind of genial, but also a bit like John Cleese.
So I said, "It's me, Aaron. Who are you?"
and he said, "Well, you probably won't believe me because - no, don't hang up, listen - I'm God."
So I thought, "Well!" and said, "Ah, but if you're God, then you're omniscient, right? So you would know, for example, um, what the weather's going to be like tomorrow?"
and he said, "Right, but I haven't actually decided yet."
So of course I said, "Go on then, prove you're God,"
and He said, "Ah, but proof denies faith, and without faith I am nothing,"
and I said, "Don't give me that. Come on, I'm going to hang up"
and then He kind of chuckled, and said, "Alright; think of a number."
So I thought, "Ah! This'll get Him,"
and then He said, "Root minus one? Not very original. Still, have another go."
So of course by now I was confused, and then he said "Two-hundred-and-eighty-five to the google a google times? Well I suppose it'll do."
So by now I was convinced. Well, almost. There was just one more test. "Can I speak to my Great-great-grandad then?"
and of course, God said, "Um, well, he's not actually here" which was exactly what I'd suspected.
"So, what are you phoning me for?" I said,
and He goes, "Well, I was just wondering how things are going?"
"Well, say what do you particularly like about the universe, you know?"
So I said, "Well, um, I like the metallic paint on cars, and I like the way people leave gloves on top of railings just in case the owner comes by, and that weird noise the hump-backed whales make, and the work kumquat, and, um, the way TV is in colour, and the Milky Way is pretty cool I guess"
"Thanks very much," He said. "But what really annoys you?"
So I said, "The way my nails and the grass on the lawn keep growing and I have to keep cutting them, and that you can't actually see the Great Wall of China from the Moon, and the fact that cherished registration plate thingies cost so much, and um, that I've only got one thumb on each hand."
"Right, right" He said, "So, how do you feel about, um" (and here His voice took on a kind of pleading tone) "Milton Keynes?"
"Well I've never been there, actually"
"Good, good, right. Well, your comments have been noted. Thank-you for your time."
"Um, right. Bye."
"Bye." And then He put the phone down.
Slowly, I replaced the handset, but then picked it up again and quickly dialled one-four-seven-one.
"The number you have called has not been engaged on a temporary line-fault due to an inoperable unavailable service requirement witheld their number. Please try again and hang up." This was followed by the engaged tone.
I wasn't surprised. You only get to speak to God once.
Then the phone rang. "Hello?"
"Hello!" a deep, hearty, yet snide and indisputably evil voice, a bit like a male Joan Collins but different, replied. "Satan here. Have you been phoned by a deity of any kind before?"
"Well, it's funny you should mention that," I said, noting as he went quiet the sound of a fire in the back-ground and some strange moaning, "but...