The entire universe consisted of a few hundred square feet of space and about thirty people. We were neither indoors nor out. We had neither weather nor windows, yet the sun shown down on us like a late summer afternoon. Beyond the edge of our universe was nothing. It was not black. It was not something. It was nothing. It was like atmosphere that we could not touch. There were no walls keeping us in, nor a cliff keeping us away, yet I knew we could not pass beyond. We had a few tables and crates to sit on. And we were dying.
One by one, our universe was emptying, shrinking. Each of us possessed a small, electronic device that I quickly came to fear. It was not unlike my cell phone in physical design. The time would come. Simultaneously, we would all activate our devices. The world would freeze in time for just a moment, though we lost not our conscious awareness of that moment. When the universe moved forward again, one of us was gone. It was terrifying.
We were out of food. I walked among my companions, searching for something... anything. Nothing. It was only a matter of time.
One person vanished, then another. As people disappeared, so did our universe. Eventually there were only three of us left in a space no bigger than a child's bedroom.
I knew this was the end for me. I knew I was next to go. The void was random, yet somehow I knew it to be true. We all picked up our electronic devices... and I noticed an unusual cloud formation beyond the edge of the universe. "Look at those clouds!" I exclaimed. The clouds were dark gray against a thin blue background. They were miniature, no more than three inches thick and less than six feet from the ground. They moved quickly.
As soon as I uttered my sentence, the man sitting opposite me stood up. The clouds approached from his side of the universe toward mine. They were inches from his head. My mind yelled Duck! but I didn't have time to speak again. The clouds touched his head, and he disappeared. I was devastated.
Two of us left in the entire universe. I'm not entirely sure who was left with me. I think it may have been Dweezil. No food. No hope. Nothing left to do but pick up our electronic devices. We each pushed the button...
...and this time, the universe didn't pause. It changed to a nearly colorless universe, except for the deep electric blue that made up the outline of my soul as it rose from its body. I glanced back and saw the last remaining person in the universe collapsing over my body in grief.
I had not time to watch this person, for my soul started moving forward. I saw a light ahead of me, and I felt afraid. I was not afraid of eternal consequences of my life. I was simply afraid of the unknown. I drifted toward the light...
...and found myself in the audience of a large amphitheater. Row after row of seats, all filled with college students (of which I was now one), poured back from the stage. The stage and first section of seats were indoors, but the back half of seats were outdoors. I sat quietly near the back and realized I had been reincarnated. I looked around me, trying to get my bearings, and saw the person who was hit by the clouds. I leapt up and ran to him with joyous exclamations on my lips. He worked as a janitor for the theatre and was not as happy to see me as I was to see him. I realized he had lived in this life for some time and had already adjusted. He told me to calm down, lest I draw attention to myself, and that he would talk with me later. I waited, and while waiting I came to understand that the last person from my previous life would soon be in my life again. That made me extremely happy.
After a short while, the janitor found me and explained some things to me. He pointed me toward the entrance of a dark tunnel that rested at the end of a long series of piers. The edge of the tunnel was lined with white lights to make it appear less threatening. I noticed that same electric blue light emanating from deep within the tunnel.
"They started another game," he explained. I felt a tremendous sense of relief, knowing I would not be involved in my previous experiences again. It was not until I awoke that I noticed the discrepancy with the word "game." My previous life was not a game in any form. It was all that was.