He had kept his secrets. He had thought he was safe… He was doing so well. Doing alright anyway. Now, he was not so sure. It was all gone. He has nothing… is nothing. Nowhere to go… nowhere to be.
There is no escaping Review. He had done his best to prepare, fearing what was to come. At close of day, he had gone over everything. Every day. For years. Tracing the threads back to their beginning. What had been right and what wrong? Except, it wasn’t that easy, was it? Understanding…first principles, it seemed, mattered more than tangible results.
The dark tunnel is daunting, closing around him, a steely wormhole drawing him towards a distant point of light. There should be fear. The thought flits across consciousness… is considered dispassionately and discarded. He has gone too far for fear. He moves onward, surrendering reluctance to inevitability. He is not the only one to have felt like this. No-one escapes Review… not here. Not now. The Records wait.
Light bleaches all detail, there is nothing, no-one… only images, flickering pages of a Book, replayed with perfect clarity. No human emotion to cloud Review, no room for excuses… no one to hear them. Fast forward, but he recognises the scenes as they fly past. Right from the start. Slowing now and then to linger on the details… on the cause of error, the root of misunderstanding Lingering too, with perfect justice, on each true success, each genuine effort. Consciousness flayed with Truth. No place for illusion. Beginning to end, with nowhere to hide. No mercy. Only excoriating clarity.
Only a balancing of the books. How appropriate. He wondered if he could still smile…
Where would he go from here? Back to complete his training? Or forward into the unknown? He stands on the brink of time. It is time. That’s the thing about Review… The new-born soul closes the Book of his life … life over… and now he must judge himself.