© Copyright 2010 - Darkraptor1 - Used by permission
Storycodes: Other+/m; afterlife; latex; wrap; mum; sleepsack; cocoon; gag; susp; outdoors; cons; X
I’m awoken as the wind blows through the trees, making my sack sway gently.
Blinking my eyes, I look about, wondering if this is something new. But it is not. Only the breeze, and nothing more.
A few moments later, and my sleep sack goes still once more.
Closing my eyes, I try to go back to sleep, but being awoken in such a manner makes it impossible. I have no way of knowing how long I’ve slept, for the fog and dim light remain unchanged since when I dozed off.
A day could have gone by, or a week. I just don’t know.
But then again, here, in Limbo, time never seems to change.
My name is Quentin, and I’m a prisoner in Limbo. Counter to what some of you may believe, there is an afterlife, but it’s unlike anything you might have thought. Heaven and Hell don’t exist. There’s no fiery torture chamber or paradise the dead go to. There’s only Limbo, a place that’s void of good or evil. Everyone comes here, regardless of what they did in life.
I came here about… ten years ago, I think. I had been killed in a car crash while driving home one evening. But there was no tunnel of light for me, no pearly gates. There had only been blackness, and when I awoke, I found myself lying in the middle of a forest. Confused, I had gotten up, unsure of how I had gotten here. Even more confusing, yet somewhat surprising, was that I was no longer fifty five. I had the body of a fit and lean thirty year old, something that I was surprised and happy about.
There was a path on the ground, and I followed it, hoping to find answers as to where I was.
After following the path for some time, I arrived at a small building. Going inside, I was met by the keepers of this place, who told me that I was dead, and that I had arrived in Limbo. At first, I was frightened and confused, but they calmed me down, and told me that I had little to fear.
Limbo, they explained, was the abode of the dead. Both righteous and wicked souls came here, where they would remain forever, as Limbo would be their final resting place. But it is not a bad thing. Eventually, all of Limbo’s occupants fall into a deep sleep that lasts for eternity, where no nightmares can touch them, where there is only peace.
But, I was told, before that would happen, a person had to be punished for the evil they did in life.
I was afraid of being punished, because like many others on earth, I had been told that punishment in the afterlife was eternal and never-ending. But I was told that such a view was incorrect. The punishment in Limbo was proportional to the evil one committed in life. No one, no matter how evil, was punished forever. Some might be punished for a few weeks, others for millions of years, but in the end, everyone fell into the final sleep that claims us all.
My life was reviewed. All in all, I had been fairly good, but my major crime, my wickedness, if you will, was that I had been a fraud when it came to investing. I had taken people’s money and used it for my own benefit, rather then investing it for them like I promised. My schemes had made me fantastically rich, but, as I learned, had driven many people into bankruptcy, along with several companies.
For this, I was told, I was to be punished for fifty years. But there was no malice from the keepers. They did not judge me, or condemn me. The sentence was equal to the amount of misery and suffering I had inflicted.
I was nervous about such a sentence, but knew there was no running away. If I did, I was told, I would only be lost in Limbo, aimless, and alone. It would be better to serve the time and get it over with.
Hesitantly, I agreed, not knowing what the punishment was to be.
I was taken into a room, where I was given a thick rubber suit. I managed to get into it, squeezing inside it, with only my head remaining uncovered.
I was informed that the next part of the punishment would involve restraining me, and if I resisted, I would be forcibly restrained. Seeing as I didn’t want to annoy my captors, I nodded.
Black bandages were brought into the room, and the keepers began to wrap me up. I stood, looking down as they wound the wrappings around my body, a limb at a time, until I was wrapped up from chin to toe. Then my legs were pressed together and wrapped together, sealing them into a single unit.
My arms were placed at my side, and they were wrapped there, covered and held in place.
With my arms and legs restrained, I was powerless to stop the keepers as they continued their work. For what felt like an hour, I was mummified, wrapped up in layer after layer of the bandages, each one squeezing and compressing me, making movement ever more difficult.
Eventually, they worked their way up and around my head. I was terrified that they were going to cover my face, blinding me, but they avoided my face, and focused on the rest of my head, until that too, was covered in layers of bandages.
Then the last bandage was tied down, I was fully mummified, encased in over ten layers of bandages, and barely able to wiggle. The wrappings were tight enough that, if I had been alive, I wouldn’t have been able to breathe. But because I had no need of air, I was just held completely immobile.
One of the keepers held me upright while another took out a leather sleep sack. I was lifted up as it was placed at my feet, and then threaded up and over my bandages. The sack was a size too small for me, which ensured a tight, snug fit, so much so that the keepers had to pull hard to close the zipper.
Once the zipper was closed, they took some rope and began to thread it through the sack and over the zipper, cinching the sack tighter around me, compressing me even further, if that was possible.
I could only stand there, feeling the bag squeezing itself around me, starting at my feet, and working its way up, the feeling of tightness slowly, inevitably, working its way up, until the lacing was finally finished at my neck.
The keepers stepped back for a moment (save the one holding me up), looking me over, ensuring that my restraints were tight. They were, though I didn’t tell them so. I was worried they would find something else to apply to my form, and make things even tighter.
Apparently, they thought it wasn’t tight enough, for they got several belts, and threaded them through loops in the sack, buckling them at my ankles, knees, thighs, lower and upper torso, and finally, my neck.
When the last belt was buckled down and secured, the keepers were apparently satisfied with my restraints, for all of them left, save the one holding me up. He effortlessly picked me up and carried me out of the building.
We went into the forests of limbo, where he carried me down a path, taking us deeper into the woods, the faint light coming and going as we went through the thick trees and fog.
As we went, I couldn’t help but notice people dangling in trees, all of them dressed as I were. Completely restrained, and sealed in leather and rubber. But there were others, lying on the grass, who’s eyes were closed, and were unaware of us. They were, I was told, those who had completed their punishments, and now rested peacefully.
I asked if my family was here.
Some were, I was told, but that I was not to be afraid. Once all of us had completed our punishments, we would be together, and would remain so forever. All we had to do was wait a little while, and then it would happen.
The keeper stopped at one of the taller trees. A thick rope was dangling from a branch. Standing me up, he tied the rope to the back of the sack, securing it. This place was where I would be punished, I was told. I would be left in solitary, to look back on my mistakes in life and contemplate them.
To ensure that I would do so in silence, the keeper took out the last piece of restraint I was to wear…a thick gag. Knowing that it was useless to protest, I opened my mouth and allowed it to be pushed in. It went deep, entering my mouth and throat, making it impossible to speak. I wiggled my mouth as the gag was buckled on, securely covering my mouth, and my entire lower face.
With the gag on, the rope began to rise, taking me with it. I was pulled into the air, looking down as the keeper watched me go upwards. When I finally came to a stop fifty feet above the ground, the keeper left, leaving me.
I have forgotten how long ago that was.
There is no way of measuring the passage of time in Limbo. The weather never changes, and it never grows brighter or darker. It always remains the same, and it always will.
I dangle here, from my tree. Watching. Waiting. Occasionally I see someone being carried by below, being taken to their own trees. And occasionally, I see someone being released, and led somewhere to begin their eternal rest.
I wait for the time when I will be released. But until then, I will remain here, with no one to talk to, alone with nothing but my thoughts, and my memories. I have nothing but my restraint.
I hear nothing, but the wind softly blowing through dead branches.