Suddenly, the barbeque smell took me into a flashback of yesterday. I was laying on my bed as the glow in the dark decals on my wall lit up the night. I was in the middle of a very frightening nightmare. My palms sweated and my heart throbbed. My eyes fluttered open, thanking god that my nightmare wasn’t a reality. But, a burning smell filled my room. Under my door, where there was a small partition in the floor and the door, a red and orange light glowed. I could hear my 11 year old brother, Matthew, screaming, “Help! Help! Megan! I quickly stood up. Terrified and afraid, I put my hand against the door. It was burning hot. My mind clicked. FIRE! My memories, moments, my home was about to be reduced into ashes! I worried. My lip quivered and I felt dizzy. The faint screaming of Jack, my 5 year old brother, and Matthew echoed in my ears. What was I going to do? My hand shot up to touch the door. But, I hesitated. Not because I wanted to save myself first, but because I was afraid of what was behind that door. I looked at the second exit, the window. Oh no! There wasn’t a way to get to my brothers room! I screamed and stomped across my room. Something shined and caught my eye. My Gymnastic medals! A light bulb flickered above my head. I rushed to the window and looked at the window sills. They looked like a Gymnastics beam. I took the net off and stepped on the sill. I wiped the sweat off my forehead and continued forward. I pretended it was the beam finale. I kept my head high, trying not to look down, and my arms were stretched. There! My brothers’ window was open. I punched the net and jumped inside. “Megan!” My brothers screamed with joy. I hugged them and they filled me with warmth. Next, what should I do? My mind raced. I hurried to Jack’s bed. I took off the bed sheet and tied it to Matthew’s bed sheet. I said to Mathew, “I’m going to tie this around your waist and I will wait up here while I let this rope down. But, you have to hug Jack tightly. Okay?” Then, he asked what I feared, “What about you?” I pushed my tears back. “Don’t worry! The rope can’t hold all three of us. I’ll tie the rope to something strong later. Just go down!” But, I knew it was going to be too late. I hugged them for the last time. Tears flooded my eyes. But, I knew I had to save them. I tied the rope, helped them get out the window, and slowly let the rope down. When they reached the ground, I poked my head outside the window. “I love you. Go run to the Ramos’s! Keep on ringing their doorbell till they open the door and then call 911! Fast! Go! I’ll find you! Just remember I love you! Now, Go!” I yelled on top of my lungs. I saw them run across the street. Suddenly, it started to get uncontrollably hot. My brain was melting. My blood was sizzling. My body was trembling with fear. And that’s when I knew I was too late. My legs wobbled. Then, my eyes fluttered. The door burst open and the fire exploded into the room. And that’s my last memory in the real world.
The line moved up in the Judgment Pavilion. A recognizable person faced the judges. My dad! William Shakespeare started in a poetic voice “Neither good nor bad. Neither glad nor sad. Such a simple life you have had, be glad!” King Minos raised his hand, “Please be quiet.” He turned to my father, “You have used many clever ways and tricks to trick people into giving you more money. I like that. But, Lord Hades’ request is that I don’t go by my evil ways. So, I’m going to leave the decision on you, Jefferson.” Thomas Jefferson pushed his spectacles up his nose. “Very well then. Well, specifically to you, Minos, A lie is not a lie told for ones benefit. You, Mr. Lewis Smith, are one simple fellow. Therefore you have earned yourself a ticket to Asphodel (a place where neither good nor evil souls go after death). You may proceed to the River Lethe (a river located in the Underworld that cleans your memory) or you can just go to Asphodel with your memory.” There was not even one sign of emotion on my dad’s face yet, he said, “No, sir. I would like to keep both bad and good memories with me.” He walked away. Next on line was my mom. My heart filled up with tears when I saw her. I thought she had survived and she would be able to take care of Matthew and Jack. However, now, Jack and Matthew were alone. A voice interrupted my thoughts. King Minos laughed. “Ah! Marvelous! What a wonderful plan.” I knitted my eyebrows. What plan had my mom made? My mom looked tense. She bit her lip. King Minos continued, “So, you thought you were going to burn the house, kill your husband, save the children, and seize an acre of land without anything going wrong?” Jefferson stopped him. “Now, Now Minos. Be easy on the lady.” He turned to my mom. “You dug a grave for your husband but you fell in and pulled your daughter and husband with you! Your punishment is in the Fields of Punishment.” I rushed forward and said, “No!” Shakespeare asked, “Ah! Who do we have here? Oh yes! The saver of two lives. The only sister who risked her life to save her brothers’. Megan, you haven’t done any less than the Gods. You have earned a one way pass to Elysium or even rebirth.” A wall of shock hit me. But, what about my mom? I argued, “I’ll give up rebirth if you change your minds about my mom’s punishment.” At this, Jefferson scrunched his eyebrows. Shakespeare signaled for the judges to huddle. The men discussed it for a while and came up with a decision. Jefferson said, “We need special people like you in the real world. So, we will let your mom proceed to Asphodel, but she cannot wipe her memory. She needs to remember the sin she has done. And you can then take rebirth.” I smiled for the first time in days. “Thank you! Thank you!” I hugged my mom. I laughed and walked through the door that said, “REBIRTH!” I looked at the sun, walked forward, thinking about how much excited my brothers would be when they saw me.