The diner looked like any other, and Mitch was skeptical he’d come to the right place. He opened the door a crack and peered inside, expecting to see a dimly lit room full of candles and woo, but instead the light was bright and people were drinking their coffees and eating sandwiches.
A gruff voice behind him said, “You going in, buddy, or what?”
Mitch stepped inside. A waitress told him to take any seat, so he found a small booth for two and sat facing the door. A menu stood in a silver holder with a picture of a lush fruit bowl in the South Seas on the cover, and he picked it up. There were the usual salads and burgers, shakes and pies, on offer.
“You ready?” the waitress said, appearing in front of the booth with pencil and pad.
“I, um, heard that this place was a portal,” Mitch said. “But all I see on the menu is lunch.”
She rolled her eyes. “Check the back.”
Mitch turned the menu over. On the back was a list titled “Infinity Realms.” It was a double column and his eyes began to glaze over reading through the small curly font.
“Usually people know the one they want before they get here,” the waitress said. “And they just tell me the code. We’re kinda busy today and portals close at one.”
“Okay okay.” Mitch had made his decision this morning, after months of agonizing, and he wanted it done. “I found it. The code is XB8720A75.”
“A popular one.” She smiled. “Do you want fries with that?”
“No thanks. Just coffee, black.”
She returned in a minute with his coffee. “I’ll let you know when your portal is ready. You can pay now though.”
He handed her a cashier’s check. It was all he had; that was the deal.
As he waited, he imagined his realm. It would be full of natural beauty… leafy trees, a riot of vivid blooming flowers, butterflies and birds, a sparkling waterfall, lovely warm sunshine… a meadow to lie in, woods to wander in… but also people to admire his works, unlike here. They’d read his poetry and appreciate it. Women would respect his intelligence and deep thoughts instead of brushing him off as an oddball. They’d all compete to date him, but he’d only spend his time with the nicest ones who had tender temperaments.
“Okay.” The waitress reappeared. “Go to the men’s room.”
Mitch walked to the back of the diner and opened the door to the men’s restroom.
Mitch was no longer in the diner, but in a gorgeous garden where he’d live forever and be loved and appreciated. He bent down to sniff a fat yellow rose, but was disappointed when he couldn’t pick up a scent.
“Hi honey, welcome home!”
Mitch turned to find a naked redheaded woman slinking toward him. She reminded him of his third grade teacher. “Hi,” he said, embarrassed. “Would you like to hear some of my poetry?”
She wrinkled her nose. “Poetry? Ew. I want to devour you in a wild frenzy of lust! How does that sound for your last moment of consciousness ?”
“Not great.” Mitch backed away. “I don’t want to be devoured. This is the Garden of Immortality, remember?”
“Oh honey!” She laughed. “You must have put in the wrong code. This is the Garden of Immorality, and I’m the chief cannibal. Meet my friends…”
Mitch stared in horror as hungry naked women emerged from the trees.
Written for MLM’s Magical Garden Prompt.
Written for Teresa’s Immortality Prompt.
©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.