1 In the beginning

First came the pungent smell of rotten eggs in the already dusty smoke filled air, followed by the rough growls of 'uhhhhgggggghhh' continuously, and lastly the slow dragging of feet, one at a time. In such times, when these three things were noticed, it was wise for one to run and hide or prepare to fight because it only pointed to one thing, zombies!!!

Unfortunately for Su Yan today, she could do neither one of those three things because her legs would not let her.

It was unbelievable that she, the greatest and proudest chi blocker on an earth infested zombie world had been betrayed by her own team led by the man she had loved for ten years. When they came foraging for supplies, they had ended up in an unmarked zombie nest and to escape, her own fiancé shot her multiple times in the legs before escaping with two others.

"You have no superpower Su Yan; you can only be my sacrifice at this time. Do it as the last proof of your love for me." He said shamelessly before escaping.

With disbelief in her eyes, she watched the last bit of his shadow fade away as she was bleeding out on the cold dirt floor of a semi empty mall, listening to the sounds of hungry mindless zombies come closer and closer until at last they were upon her, ripping her apart for dinner before she could even take her last breath.

Her last thought was 'This is not fair, but at least; I won't have to fight every day or live in fear anymore."

Death was not always a bad thing, it was the end of misery often times and Su Yan expected peace from hers. However, the line to the gates of the afterlife moved really slowly. When she opened her eyes and found herself in this line, she had been quite befuddled.

Thousands of people were ahead of her, each one waiting to go through the gates. Most of them reminded her of the mindless zombies from earth; they moved in synchronicity and never seemed to be bothered by the length of the line unlike her.

She was impatient; waiting for her turn was driving her insane. Bureaucracy, it seemed was a nightmare that could not be escaped in life and the afterlife.

Since she seemed to be the only one that was aware of what was happening, Su Yan decided to do the easy thing and cut the line.

"Sorry, excuse me." She overtook one person first. She was testing the waters first to see if there were consequences for what she was doing.

When nothing happened, she overtook another and another and another for what seemed to be like months until she finally got close to the gates.

She would have kept going but the entrance to the large white misty cloud like portal gates was manned by scary looking men and women in long black robes.

Besides, an old man was sitting in front of a massive grey like wall library that appeared to be endless. It was filled with small cubes containing scrolls.

When one reached the man, they would take a seat, something would be explained to them, and then they took a sip of whatever was in the small porcelain cup before them before proceeding to enter the misty gates.

She could not tell what was behind the gates, whether it was heaven, hell or reincarnation she had no idea. From a distance, she had not noticed other smaller portals in the columns of the library. They were swirling energetically in an anti-clockwise manner, and each of them glowed with a different color. She wondered briefly where those led to but her attention was quickly drawn back to the old man.

"Is he Yan Wang?" she asked herself. Yan Wang was the mythical deity of the afterlife. It was not ridiculous for her to imagine that perhaps this was him.

From where she was, she could hear the old man with a long white beard talking to a very pale younger man wearing a long black robe who was standing before him with his head bowed in subservience.

"It's getting worse, more and more souls from different worlds are escaping because we have a shortage of grim reapers. All the worlds are suffering for it and I am taking all the blame but what am I supposed to do? I cannot force an unwilling strong soul to take on the job of a reaper if it doesn't wish to. Look at this long line, there is no strong soul, they are all moving just as I command."

Su Yan who had not moved as commanded almost coughed and gave herself away. "So everyone is moving in one line perfectly because of a command. She had received no such command. Was she a strong soul?" she wondered.

The old man was continuing his rant, "Just look at the gateways, to all these worlds, they have perfect bodies waiting to host strong souls. If I see one strong soul right now, I will offer them this contract immediately willing or not and send them through one of the gateways, to a wonderful world like the one behind the blue gate."

Su Yan's brain, once she heard Yan Wang's words started calculating. From his words, these swirling portals were gateways to other worlds. So there were other worlds beyond earth, all those fictional novels were actually slightly nonfiction.

If she went through one of those gateways, specifically the blue one she could live again in a wonderful world. A new bubbling hope brewed inside of her. She could live again.

"Do it." A voice in head whispered so temptingly.

A part of her thought about the contract the old man mentioned. If she signed it, she would become a grim reaper.

"Just jump through the portal while the old man is still ranting." The voice said.

Su Yan was unsure and for a few seconds she was filled with doubt. What if she ended up in another zombie filled world?

"Being alive is better than being dead, what if you end up in a good world, in the body of a wealthy young woman. You would never have to worry about food or money. You would simply lay back and enjoy yourself like a salted fish. You heard the old man; the blue gateway leads to a wonderful world. Aren't you tempted to see that wonderful world? Do it, jump through it." That tempting voice encouraged and pushed her.

All reason and doubts were pushed out by the tempting voice. All she could think about was the wonderful life that was waiting behind the portal. The deity had said so himself.

As if she was mindless, Su Yan found herself running with all of her strength and leaping into a blue gateway.

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