(NOTE: You need to read my "Irktionary" to understand the many antennae gestures in this fic from now on. And you must read "IZ: What Will Be, Will Be" to at least chapter 18 to understand these mini fics )
April eleventh in the year 2006 was the absolute worst day of my life, as the very last piece of my life fell somewhere in the dark hole with the rest of the pieces.
It was around March when GIR fell ill; a serious computer virus invading every circuit and ultimately slowly shutting him down. He was the last thing on earth that gave me a purpose to go on..I had lost all else. Without irken tools, I knew there wasn't much I could do for him. I stayed by his bedside every second of every day, unless he requested me to fetch him something. We spent most of the time talking about when life was life: happy and full of family. Everyday, he seemed to be weaker and spoke slower, finally unable to open his eyes three days before his passing. He spoke very little on his final day; I had so much to say, and couldn't seem to say it. In a few final words, they were barely understandable, but I could still hear the indefinite whisper of "dan...'m" before he silenced.
For those of you who don't know what that means, it's traditionally irken for "father/daddy", and a word seldom on Irk. I don't mind in the least he called me that; my role of master and his of servant was abandoned long ago - only that his words of course, shocked me into silence, and I couldn't speak - at least not until his eyes closed and he shut down. I told myself it was pointless to cry for him, but did it anyways... I had lost way more than a simple slave. He was like a sidekick; like a friend; like a brother; like my child.. I stayed curled up beside him on the bed for a couple days, falling into the deepest and first actual consuming depression I ever had..
See, as far as I was concerned, my life was over; I had lost every little bit I held dear. And I thought the meaning of life was torn from me after I found out about my banishment.. Heh, well, had I ever been wrong.. You don't know the meaning of pain and loss until you lose a beloved person - three of them...
I do not even remember the events after GIR died; I have no idea if I was living for days, weeks, months, or even years.. I only remember not sleeping, not eating, and feeling weaker, sicker, and thinner each day.. Every day greeting the sun with a pained heart and perhaps a heave in a bucket, I felt myself fading faster.. I never counted the days of how long I was alive, and I never wanted to be.. I only remember one day, feeling so insanely tired; an eerie tiredness trying to consume me, pull me in.. It was the kind of tiredness you just couldn't fight...and didn't want to. I lay down on our old leather couch, recalling all the happy times on it when we watched movies.. (Normally ones about monkeys - oh, GIR!)
Then I fell asleep...
Safe to say...I was a tad confused waking up, expecting to awake in the freezing and lonely bedroom GIR and I once shared. Florida or not, when you're as thin as I was, you'd always be cold. I seemed to be climbing out of a small pond, yet felt not the slightest burn. I couldn't see too much around me other than the sparkling water at my feet - I swear, diamonds were embedded somewhere in it! In the ray of a the sun somewhere in the mist, I caught sight of what I was wearing: a long white gown that was about the size of my uniform. Irk, and I thought my irken uniform slightly looked like a dress!
Perhaps I should have realized right off the bat of where I was, simply judging by the serenity of this place, but I must just have been in such denial I would never get here, I didn't think it possible. I tried to see past the mist and sunlight induced sparkles in the air, but I saw nothing but light and the water beneath my feet.
Mother of Irk, if heaven had a ceiling, I would have hit it! I glanced around for the source of the man's voice, but saw not a trace of a human being. "Where am I?"
"A place you have always wanted to be.."
Voices coming from nowhere? White dresses? Yes, I really should have been able to figure out where I was; I guess I was just that confused and insane, maybe.. I took this opportunity to look down at my gown. "Where is my uniform?"
"You are wearing it: it is the uniform of heaven."
Okay, now I was officially terrified. Which you probably find quite baffling considering I was in the most gentle, beautiful, amazing place on earth. (Right? Wait, where WERE we?) I am not sure what frightened me so, or what caused the ushered tears to spill, but they were gently wiped away with invisible hands.
"Heaven is no place for tears.." the serene voice told me gently.
"Th-there has been a mistake," was all I managed to choke out.
"Heaven makes no mistake; you have done enough to repentant for your sins.."
What? Was he totally loony? Perhaps too much time spent in high altitude up in the clouds? I heard a chuckle and froze. He could hear me? I've lived with the desire to hate and get revenge on the irken empire - died hating them, hating the drunk driver.. Ultimately, I seemed to have committed suicide by not eating. (Could that be considered suicide?) I hated all through my life, hurt and killed the innocent, and did WHAT to make up for all my wrong-doings!
"Heaven does not turn its back on a troubled soul..." the disembodied voice said softly, and I nearly jumped once more as hands were gently placed on my shoulders. "Come. A few people have been waiting for you for quite a while.."
There really and truly are no words to describe heaven unless you saw it for yourself. However, even then, my doubts you will believe what is in front of your own eyes: the most beautiful of flowers; the brightest of blue skies; the greenest of grass; the water just...phenomenal.. "You have lost your mind," I croaked to the human - deity - whatever it was!, "you must have! I don't belong here! I have done nothing but bad! I could not even save Dib! I could not save Talia! I could not save GIR! They were my allies - friends - family!" Having pretty much howled out in grief, I slumped to the ground, trembling desperately. Immediately, someone stood me up.
"And that," the man told me, "is the exact reason why you are here. The badness in your life, the pain you caused is nothing in comparison to the pain you took away... You saved more lives then you realized, and you finally accepted me into your heart the day you did so. Your love saved you.."
I still had my doubts, and was visibly still pretty frightened, until...
My vision was suddenly obscured by a blur of black and a peachy colour: Dib's head, finding myself crushed in the first hug I'd ever gotten from him. Irk, I was worried he'd kill me with that strength! (Oh...wait..)
"You're finally here! This is so great!"
I tensed in the foreign embrace, never having been hugged by the human before. Despite how much I had missed him, I debated whether or not to pull away, finally realizing heaven was no place for bitterness. I rested my cheek on his shoulder.
He pulled back, gripping my hands tightly and grinning from ear to ear; I think he was going to cry! Of course, I probably looked the same. At this point, I had several choices: break into tears; hug him back, tighter; tell him I missed him.. but no - how apt - typical me - what do I do? "...Wow, even in heaven, they didn't have the sympathy to downsize your head a bit, huh?"
Mood shot. Tearful smile turned to frown, which turned to a smirk. "How I missed you.."
"Ditto." I did not let my voice hold the emotion I felt.
He was as excited as a smeet on Christmas morning! "Oh man - we waited so long! There is so much to show you! Oh - you'll love the forest; you always did love our special camping ground!"
I am not really listening anymore, my eyes are trained on a young female bent over into a patch of flowers by an old oak tree, tickling something in the stomach with her foot. I knew who she was, but called anyways, "Mamin?" She turned to me, antennae whipping behind her head; her adorable purple jewel bobbing at the tip. She wasn't wearing her apron, which was weird, and was in the same white gown we all were. "Zim...baby.."
My feet ran before I did, reaching the same arms I was sure stopped holding me 100 years ago - for good. She still smelled like irken cookies.. (She did bake them everyday!) "M-Mamiiii..." I barely whispered, inhaling the cookie scent. My antennae curled lovingly around my mother's, holding back the tears that were not to be shed in heaven. My foot curled in, and I laughed for the first time in a year, feeling something nipping at it. Only now did I realize both my feet and hands were completely bare. Mamin chuckled and gently dropped me in the large patch of flowers. Only when I looked in front of my face and through a few flowers, had I never felt more content than in that moment.
"GIR..!" He lay there on his back, giggling and squirming as Mamin nudged his little stomach with her foot. Oh wow, he really had not changed, and I grinned when he leaped at me, sure I'd be crushed in one of his death-cuddly-embraces, but no! He just wanted to play! Understandable: he had been bed ridden for a month before he died.. I laughed more as he nipped at my toes again, stomach, and pretty much any place he could get to. (And where all my tickle spots were..) I realized he was not wearing a long white gown lie the rest of us, and suddenly saw it discarded in a patch of flowers, crumpled in a heap. (HAHA! Well, GIR, always DID hate clothes! No doubt God wouldn't have an easier time dressing him than I would!) I affectionately bobbed my little robot's antenna. He giggled; eyes shinning with that same teal happy childish sparkle that extinguished the day of the crash.
"I-I thought I had lost you f-forever," I told him, not knowing that there was to be no dwelling in heaven.
The tiny little robot giggled once more, wiping away some more of my welling tears. "Love you," he purred, curling his antenna around mine, and pressing his forehead to me.
Warmth flooded through me, and I was sure it was not the beaming sun. My antennae vibrated to the tip with happiness as I soaked in the love basked in heaven's soil. Something dawned on me though. "Where is Talia?"
Dib chuckled, climbing a tree and taking down a peach, shaking a few dewdrop-sparkles off it before cramming it in his mouth. "'Fink she's 'n the forest wif.." Juice dribbled down his chin and I didn't hear the last of his sentence. He pointed towards a patch of trees in the distance, peach juice flinging off his fingers and onto my face. "That way.. And hurry back, we wanna give you a tour!"
I winked back at my old friend with a smile, and took off on heaven's plains, taking in the scenery as I walked. I was trying to figure out what was in the air: snow? Rain? Sparkles? The sky shone a radiant blue; the grass beneath my feet sparkling, and there were so many different sounds in the background. I heard the "baas" of sheep, barks of dogs, howls of wolves, and laughter of children. I was still trying to figure out just where I was, despite being told about ten times by now. (It was still difficult to believe..)
At last, I arrived at the entrance at the forest, and I could see small little rays of the sun leaking down into a clearance in the middle of the forest. Cautiously, I advanced..into the most beautiful meadow I had ever seen. There were roses; there were lilacs; there were marigolds; there were daffodils, and in the midst of it all,was a small stump in the centre. She sat there, a silver white gown flowing far past her ankles, sitting in a man's lap. The man gently reached down and put a crown of roses on her head.
She looked up to me, her amethyst eyes sparkling in joy. "Brother!"
Wait, brother? She could pronounce the "o?" Had heaven repaired her speaking disabilities?
The man helped her off his lap, gently placing her down into the flowers; I estimated her gown was at least 5 feet long. She bounded through the sea of daffodils and poppies and irk knows what, jumping just as I caught her.
I bounced the child a few times high in the air, listening to her happy squeals of laughter. "So, smeet," I asked in a playful business tone, "have you been good for God?"
She giggled, touching my face gently as I fingered a purple curl. "Been tryin' to," she perked, burying into my neck and gown. (Gown? Wow, that sounds weird.) "Yer wearing a white dress too!"
I laughed lightly, taking in the forgotten details in her face. No cuts, no tubes, no bruises, no blood; just her. No tears, just laughter and smiles. "I suppose I am. I guess it is 'heaven style.'" She giggled as I gently set her back into the flowers, and turned to the man that was holding her before.
I advanced slowly towards the man, my eyes trained on his face. I had never seen him before, yet, felt that I knew him my whole life, and felt the sudden unknown impulse to thank him; I knew he had saved my family. "Thank you."
He said nothing, merely placing a hand on my arm and pulling me closer to his side. At this point, I noticed the ugly scars on both hands, single holes that seemed to penetrate to the other side. I turned his hands over in mine. "What happened to your hands?" And why wasn't he covering them? Irk, if I had scars that ugly and big, I'd cover them without hesitation! One reason why I was so thankful for the gloves of the invader's uniform.
"I am not ashamed of these scars," he told me, pulling his hands back and looking at me in the eye. "These scars are for you."
"...You're crazy." I swear, had I known I was talking to heaven's co-commander, (and one of the people that had given me the undeserved second chance,) I would not have spoken with such blatant disrespect! How was I to know? Had I spoken to my former commanders like that, no doubt a laser would be burrowed in my face.
He just smiled and chuckled lightly, telling me that all would be explained in due time, and bid me off with the smeet. She and I ducked through a few bushes to get into the clearing, and Talia grabbed my hand.
"Brother, I wanna show you something," she whispered, tugging me to a different direction. "You'll love it!" I smiled at the childish excitement in her eyes; it certainly hadn't changed. I let her to pull me away from the clearing; a spring, tiny animals scattered among it. "Smeet, what are we doing here?"
I freaked, of course. "What?" I spluttered, "do you not remember that Zim is ALLERGIC to the water?" To my chagrin, she laughed. Oh, that idiotic smeet! "Talia, I mean it! I swear – I just came from being dead!" Before I could finish, she propelled me into the water. I screamed, expecting the agonizing burn to engulf my skin, especially as the insulting substance – as pretty as it was – invaded my scarlet eyes. ...Nothing. No pain. I glanced towards Talia, who had her head in the water, blowing bubbles. I had always sternly reminded the smeet not to open her mouth in the water, for fear she'd swallow it and it would melt her organs. (Did I forget to mention she's half irken?) It dawned on me though, when I realized we were in heaven: no pain. No death.
I let myself drift deeper into the spring, falling under the water for the first time, feeling a contenting coolness rather than an unbearable burn. For the first time, I was able to see under the water, and I was able to see everything else the smeets could when THEY swam.. It was blurred, hard to see, but still so...so NEAT! I saw fish up close! I saw the kelp beds; the rocks, and the wavering image of the sky when you tried to look through the surface. My antennae twitched when they heard muffled sounds coming from above the water, and on a river bank. I surfaced.
Dib stood there, amused, smirking down at me as I lay on my stomach in the shallows. "Done swimming yet? We have a lot of stuff to show you, ya know! You haven't seen half of this place yet!" His eyes sparkled. "It's awesome!"
I slowly emerged from the water, wondering just what else was there, and also trying to figure out where God may be. "Where has our commander gone?"
"The big guy?" The human grinned, pointing far over a few hills that seemed to stretch miles. "Waiting for us at the banquet."
I stretched, shaking off the water droplets like a dog. "Banquet?" I never felt heaven would have banquets. Of course, what am I saying? I never believed in heaven until now! (Please don't tell me God heard that..) "There is a banquet? For what?"
That surprised and impressed me. "Celebrating me, hm?" I had to smirk a bit in pleasure at that, and at the comical irony. All my life I wanted to be "celebrated" and honoured, and what hilarious irony that the ones that were going to celebrate me were the ones I formerly hated, wanted to destroy – the humans! (...Was God a human?) "Why am I being celebrated?"
"One: having an irken make it to heaven is a HUGE deal, and we always have a small celebration for new comers, anyways! Come on; the food is great, and you get a chance to meet everyone!"
My eyes were the ones sparkling now. "Well, that sounds fine by me!" But of course, they were sparkling in mischief. "How far is it?"
"Far," Dib chuckled, "and you'll get to meet my Mom! She usually helps with the banquets." He pulled me up. "Let's go!"
I scooped Talia up in my arms, needing to tuck her ridiculously long dress into my arms or I'd probably trip on it! "How far?" Everything seemed miles away in heaven. Did it ever end?
Dib laughed a bit, trying to squint over the high grassy hills. "Quite far. Good thing you don't get tired in heaven!" He grabbed my hand; my mother, and GIR joining him. "Time to go!"
I was literally dragged over the long grassy plains, laughing as I was, and not bother trying to pull from their grip. I was both excited and nervous to talk to the creator of the..universe basically. Part of me was ashamed to be facing him, and ashamed to be here. I really didn't feel I had made up for my sins, but I guess this "God" took pity on pathetic souls. Anyways, think of all the questions I would be able to ask him; perhaps the fateful "why did you make Dib's head so big?" Oh, and think of the food! I always heard the human expression, 'it tastes like heaven', and now I got to see what heaven tasted like!
The run was long and nearly endless, but to me that hardly mattered. I was once again surrounded by family I denied having, and enveloped in theirs and heaven's love. It was really quite hard to describe the strange feeling and sensation running through me; the love, the tranquillity, the contentment, the joy, the...the..
(felt so bad leaving off "Sober" as it was, thought it WAS meant to be a tragedy/angst fic, I still felt awful! XD So I made "Clarity"...
I've had many many dreams of heaven, and of course I never knew why. The eerie thing to me though is in a show I saw on tv, it showed the true story of a man dying from a heart attack briefly, and is shown heaven. What they reenacted in the images was everything down to my dream; the valleys, the springs with the animals, and the indescribable beauty. In another dream I had, it was a dream of the world ending. I was with my family and millions of others on this strange cliff; on one side of the cliff was a river of black water, and the other side, fire. Diving into the black water, I felt...it can't be described. Enveloped in pure love - nothing but love! And it felt more like you were diving into a sea of blankets rather than a sea of black water...
Anyhow, for some twisted reason, I've always believed my dreams mean something, and I ALWAYS will believe in that, and I showed a bit of what I saw in those dreams in this sequel. )