A little picture I drew of Anubis. I’m not going to be winning any art awards soon, but I like how it turned out.
His statement made Eva stop in her tracks. While she was trying her hardest to believe this was all a dream, the concrete reality and lucidity of her experience made it more and more apparent that this wasn’t the case. Still, the jackal’s attitude towards her plight wasn’t making her to warm up to him.
“It’s morning already!” Eva weakly managed to yell back.
“Well, here it is morning,” said the jackal as he casually followed Eva. “But it is still night where your body lies. When the sun rises there it will be too late for you.”
“Bullshit!” Eva yelled back at him. “How am I supposed to believe you – a talking dog of all things?”
The jackal flicked his ears in annoyance, “Believe me or disbelieve me – that’s your preference, but it will not change what has happened or what will become of you if you do nothing.”
It took a moment for Eva to think about it. She had no idea what was going on and no other information that would counter what the jackal had to offer. She was at a loss after all, and no other choice than to take the canine at his word.
“So are you going to stare at me like a fucking moron, or are you going to make yourself useful?” she asked.
“Perhaps if you spoke like an intelligent young lady and asked politely I would. You make things difficult by not listening, but sadly that is a common trait of humans.”
“Maybe if you weren’t such a stuck up asshole I would listen. You’re not making this any easier, you know.”
“That may be the case,” the jackal replied, “but it would behoove you to pay attention to the only guide that is offering you any help. Correct me if I’m wrong, but I do not see any other spirit on this street willing to give you the time of a demon’s day.”
As Eva listened she tried to hold back her annoyance with the freakish thing. She had to admit that the jackal was right. As far as she could tell, they were the only living things for miles. However, she didn’t know how to take such strange and disturbing information from anyone; much less a talking jackal.
It seemed he knew what he was talking about, but his formal manner of speech got to her the most. She hated how it felt like she was talking some snotty, bookish nerd from a hundred years ago. All she wanted was to ask for the way back home as fast as possible, leave the jackal behind, and forget all this insanity.
“Am I ‘making sense’ to you now?” the jackal asked, breaking the silence.
“You said somebody collected me and I’m not in my body right now,” Eva said, trying to understand his point of view. “What did you mean when you said I was going to die? Am I in danger?”
“Yes,” the jackal said, “By the time night falls in this land and the morning sun returns to yours, your soul will have been separated from your body for too long and will die. If that should happen this is where you will have to remain.” He explained all of this with a casual demeanor, as if he had done so many times.
Panic finally started to sink into Eva’s mind. “But that’s not fair! How in the hell am I supposed to get back? I’m not even sure how I got here.”
“You’re here because this is where you would be if you were dead. The only way out is to understand why you’re here in the first place and atone for your sins, but such an effort is a hopeless endeavor.”
“Wait, why can’t you help me? You can show me the way anyway can’t you?”
“I can help in the journey,” the jackal answered, “but that does not mean that I will.”
“But didn’t you just say that it’s your job to guide people? I need a guide and you’re the only one here that can do it!”
“Why should I?” the jackal said, insulted by the notion, “You’ve been nothing but rude since I started talking to you! And besides…” he said, “It is not my job to help the living, girl. It is my duty to guide the dead. I take souls in, not out. I don’t have time to waste on a hopeless, ignorant baby that would never make the effort to save herself.”
“But what about your ‘duty’? What does it say about you if you just leave me here?”
“Nothing,” the jackal said, “There are countless souls here; each and every one lost, suffering, and wondering why they are here when the answer is as plain as day. What’s the difference of another one among them?”
“If you’re not going to help me then I…I want to talk with your manager! You have to have a boss, don’t you? Who do you work for?”
“The Spirit of Death is the one I answer to,” he grimly responded, “His power is beyond your imagination.”
“Wuh-well, it doesn’t matter. I’ll find him and tell him that you didn’t help me when you were supposed to. I don’t care how long it takes me. And I’ll make sure that whatever or wherever the hell your boss is, he’ll throw you into the deepest, darkest pit of hell for being a lousy guide that didn’t bother to do his job.”
For all her posturing, it wasn’t very tough talk and she knew it. Her voice grew weaker and whinier, making her threat sound even lamer. She couldn’t help but feel like a little girl that threatened to tattle on another child. There was no way that the jackal would agree to help her now.