The light shone a sorrowful blue. “Do I really have to go down there again?”
The golden light reached towards the blue; warming and soothing. “Why wouldn’t you want to? There was a time you’d jump at the chance to experience the bodily senses.”
The blue light sighed. “That was a while ago now, although it seems but moments in the infinite. It’s all changed down there; I’ve spoken to some recent returnees.”
The golden light pulsed in recognition. “You’ve heard the tales too? Remind me, what was it like when you were last manifested?”
The Blue light shone bright revelling in its recollection. “I was among the first to go. Everything was so innocent, vast and wild. The air crackled with magic. Everything revelled in their shared kinship, the plants, the animals, even the air, water and stones. I was there for a mere blink of the eye, but it was wonderful.”
“I cannot force you to go, but only one such as you can give an honest account of what has happened. We only hear vagueness from those who return. Contact with the manifested seems to no longer be open, as it once was. It seems that instead of enjoying the gift of life they are obsessed with possessions; to such an extent that they themselves are mere chattels, mere numbers, enslaving themselves and each other. Others render themselves deaf and blind, presuming, in breathtaking arrogance, to fully understand the nature of all of us; even willing to kill for it, if you can believe it? You were there in the first days of sentience; perhaps you can make sense of it?” The golden light shone waiting for the reply, unable to deceive, its concerns shone through despite the warmth it exuded.
“You are worried, what troubles your love?”
“Some returnees jump straight back down. Some are sullen, yearning for vessels of manifestation once more, others are guilt ridden, needing to return, to right some wrong, ashamed to become one with the one love that binds.”
“The one love that binds.” The blue light repeated.
“Remember what you can, I sense a vessel emerging now, it is a male, are you ready?”
“A male? That’s different; yes send me now before I change my mind. I will see you soon.”
On quantum wavelengths he emerged from the universal photonic bliss. From the seething chaos of the subatomic he dropped into the psychical realms of manifestation. He instantly felt stifled, deaf and dumb; everything was set and ordered. Where was the sweet chaos, the celestial music of the spheres, the… He strove to think of the word, already his mind was closing. He didn’t remember manifestation being like this before… magic! That was a word for it; where was the magic?
Still, it would be good to see how the clan had changed. It must be 300 lifetimes since he was last here. It would be good to see through those dark eyes under heavy ridges, to follow the herds, to breathe in the cold air of winter through broad nostrils and to find love with a mate under furs, experience the suckling of an infant… oh no, he forgot; he would be male this time. The physical began to take shape before him.
The planet was blue green, as he remembered, but as he got closer he passed through detritus that orbited the world. The air was thick with dust, particles and smoke rose here and there. Where were the endless forests, the vast herds? Microwaves and radio waves emitted from below made the air crackle and hiss. It broke communication with the one love that binds. The lands looked different; strange grey patterns had appeared, linked as a web by regular lines going this way and that. The vessel must be near he felt himself speeding towards it. It would be dark in the cave; he closed his eyes in readiness to adjust them.
He opened his eyes, feeling a rush of sensory perception, once more he was within a vessel. The room was incredibly bright, the smell was unnaturally clean. The clan around him wore masks. There was a strange beeping sound. He was handed to his mother. Feeling the hunger pang in his stomach, the instinct to suckle took him, the clan had put him to his mother’s breast and he fed greedily. He looked up at his mother, feeling the bond of love growing strong already. Strange, she had a smooth brow. He must remember why he was here. The one love that binds. The one love that binds. One of the clan put a bracelet around his wrist which he looked at; it had strange forms on it. They were numbers! He’d been numbered at birth? His young mind was under sustained attack from the micro and radio waves. It was getting difficult to recall things; the one love that binds, the one love that…