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Millie found quite the surprise when she awoke, considering that she had fallen asleep in a Florida retirement home with the thermostat set at 75º. She reached for the emergency button she kept on her bedside table next to her glasses, but touched water. Millie shrieked and called, but received no response. Finally, as the time passed, or rather failed to pass, she began to grasp the situation: she was dead. This troubled her severely. She was Roman Catholic, and went to mass every Sunday, and while she could not see to discern the world around her, she was certain that Heaven couldn't be so barbarically cold. She began to do a thing she had never dreamed of before: question her faith.

Her mind began spiraling into a pit of questions so deep that she nearly passed out from mental fatigue. What did I do wrong? Is Catholicism wrong? Is the bible wrong? What is wrong? What is right? Is christianity wrong? Was Jesus wrong? Before she knew it, she was screaming in agony, "Oh God! What do you want from me? I don't want to go to Hell! God!" But an even worse thought crept into her mind. "Are you even out there?" she shrieked into the dense, impenetrable fog. But her screams were cut off by an even colder presence, a voice, appearing out of the colloidal white air, weathered and dark, and profoundly ungodly. "I would appreciate your silence as we proceed," the fog told her. "We cannot continue in this journey without silence." Its disappearance left the air even colder, as if it fed off of heat.

Dejected and alone, Millie curled up for warmth, wrapping the blanched, once floral nightgown around her as best she could and pulling her arms inside the sleeve holes. As the chill deepened, she grew rebellious and desperate, uncontrollably angry with the foggy voice in which the God she so piously worshipped had entrusted her, and at God himself. To Hell with it! she thought, half-mindedly appreciating the cleverness of her own joke. I'm damned anyway! She called out madly into the fog, "Make me! Make me! That's right! Make me quiet!" As she shrieked, the cold came back, worse than ever, and she felt the last bits of leftover heat draining from her body, until her breath was cold as well. But it didn't stop. Long silenced, she began to shriek again as the warmth continued to sublimate from her body. "Spare Me! Spare Me! Stop! No! STOP!!!", she called into the emptiness.

Soon, she couldn't move, couldn't breathe, couldn't blink. She began to think that relief would come in death, but remembered. While her entire body was frozen without the slightest hint of frost, her mind still actively shrieked in agony. She felt another significant drop as the presence left, and she was cold and alone. The notion of God dead in her mind, she grieved for herself, feeling that she was alone in her mourning, alone in the world. She wept in her mind, but her paralyzed eyes wouldn't tear, and lungs wouldn't swell, and she mourned for God as well. But the cold air continued swirling around her.

The End

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