At the threshold of Elysian, a grand and luminous archway materialises, bathed in the soft glow of celestial light. The structure is fashioned from ethereal materials, an intricate dance of marble and gold that seems to weave tales of heroism and virtue into its very essence. Elaborate carvings of laurel wreaths, symbols of victory and honour, adorn the arch, capturing the spirit of those who are destined for this paradisiacal realm.
Two majestic pillars, standing tall and proud, flank the entrance, their surfaces aglow with a warm radiance. Vines of ivy and blossoming flowers, imbued with perpetual vitality, twine around the pillars, creating an evergreen tapestry of nature's beauty. As gentle zephyrs whisper through these celestial blooms, the air carries the fragrant essence of flowers in eternal bloom.
You walk forward but are stopped at the pillared entrance. It seems you can’t go any further - a force is holding you back. You hear the most beautiful but unexpected music coming from beyond. You crane your head to look around, and see two men with their backs to you. One is sitting at an organ, the other is standing beside him with a guitar.
You’ve been so mesmerised by the music you don’t notice a woman walking up to you.
“Can I help you?” She asks.
You gasp. “Barbara Eden, is that you?”
She chuckles, “Who else would it be? Are you looking for someone?”
Still captivated by the music you’re hearing, you ask “Who are they? What is that music?”
Barbara looks behind her at the two men you’ve been staring at. “Oh, Bach and Paco, the most unexpected and delightful duo. They’ve been writing music together since Paco got here. They really are musical geniuses.”
“Who else is here?” You ask.
“Everyone you’d expect - Tolkein, Prince, the inventor of Dad jokes, the master of puns, the inventor of the Whoopie Cushion, the original prank caller - you know the type. But I really must ask you to leave now, you don’t belong up here. Turn back around and take the Abyss Express back the way you came. Feel free to take a bowl of gelato on the way.”
Surprised, you turn to look in the direction Barbara is pointing, and notice a gelato stand near the entrance.
“It’s the perfect conditions up here for the perfect dessert. Go on, I won’t tell anyone” she says with a wink.
After scooping yourself an extra large bowl of 3 different flavours (Marzipan, pistachio, Lindt), you walk back to the Abyss Express and hop on the next train, back the way you came.