Chess with God

March 16, 2017

“So, this is what your eternal paradise is?” The booming voice said. I stood on the clouds, my feet feeling like they were stuck in cotton balls, while the voice came from a ray of sun from the sky.
“Yea, I’m fairly certain. Now, could you turn that light down? My eyes are kinda hurting.” I replied, as God’s ray of sun shone on my face, magnified by my glasses. I instinctively raised my arm to block the glow.
“Well, this form won’t do me much favor in a situation like this.” God said as his voice boomed from the heavens. A staircase appeared that connected to the sky, and an old man in a long flowing white cloak descended. His beard hung down to his cheats, and his bald head reflected the white lights. He had dark brown and kind eyes, with the kind of look that a Grandfather would have, like they’d seen an eternity, but also two eternities of joy. “Now for the table.” God’s voice wasn’t booming and loud anymore, instead kind and gentle, reminding me of Carl from the movie Up. Two regal thrones and a chess table appeared. The chairs were made of Gold and garnet velvet. The chess table squares were diamond where they were usually white, and volcanic obsidian where there were black squares. I shook my head.
“No, not like this.” I waved my hand over the table, and it became a common chess board made of wood, and the chairs became household chairs. God raised his eyebrows, but gave me a knowing smirk. We sat down and began. God began, moving his pawn forward and I did the same. The game became a delicate dance, as I would take his pieces, and he would take mine. We talked about my life, about how I met my spouse, my school days, some of the mistakes I made, and some of my achievements. We laughed, we cried a bit, and laughed more. Eventually, the conversation turned to my family. “You know, it was actually my Grandfather who taught me to play chess.” I told God. “Well, of course you knew that, but I mean…” We both laughed off my mistake. “When he was in the hospital, we’d play for hours, and we couldn’t finish our last game before he died.” I said, my eyes watering at the image of my young self with my Grandfather, his normally tan skin a white pale shade, but his smile still piercing me. He’d gone bald, while he normally had a dark comb-over and stubble. I quickly shook that off. I moved my knight, taking his rook.
“You Grandpa must have been a good teacher.” God chuckled, looming over the board, pondering his move.
“He was, he taught at a chess class for unprivileged students on the weekends. He’d teach them to make their own chess sets since they a lot of them couldn’t afford the one’s from Target and stuff.” This story shook me out of my sadness as I remembered when I made my first set with him, and how he comforted me when I broke off chip on one of the sides. “That’s why I choose this table, it’s almost like finishing our last game.” My fingered traced over the groove on the table’s side where it’d broke when I was young. I finally corned his king in a corner, and took his king and the victory. I went to shake God’s hand, but before he did, his beard dissolved into small sparkles, leaving a small stubble, and a dark comb over appeared. I before he grabbed my hand, I already knew what God had done for me. I grabbed my Grandfather’s hand a shook him, having finished our last game.

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