Rohan


If you stood on the top of Axe Tower on a clear day, you could see hanging above you the snow-covered summits of the Ranges of Heaven. At the precise moment of the summer solstice, a foolish man of six feet in height or greater could reach up and touch the tip of Mount Joyful. Before capital punishment was abolished in the fifties, this was the harshest form of execution that judges reserved for only the cruellest killers.

Rohan had seen video footage of executions from that period. Contact appeared to create a bridge of the man’s body. As the two realms moved slowly apart, so stretched the bridge. By the equinox, the man somehow still alive, would be a kilometre in length, his finger still touching Mount Joyful, his toes still on the top of Axe Tower. The combination of the poor video recording quality of that period and the distorted elongated heads meant that Rohan could never tell if they were in pain or not. After the equinox as the balance shifted, the man would slowly lift away from Axe Tower. At winter solstice, the body now over two kilometers long would finally fall away and curl down towards the base of Mount Joyful. No one was ever certain if they lived after that and none had tried to enter the Realm of Heaven since the last disastrous attempt in the seventies.

For that amongst other reasons, few were permitted to the top most level of Axe Tower these days. Rohan, being the four hundred and eighty fifth Master of Axe Tower, was one of those few. Of late, he had been going up more and more often contemplate Heaven. Of late, he had been wondering more and more what it would be like to touch it. It was still three days short of the summer solstice but it did seem that if he tried, Rohan with four inches above six feet, would just be able to reach Mount Joyful.

If there was justice, I would do it. I have committed enough crimes to be executed ten times.

But the Master had his duties. With a sigh, Rohan lowered his hand and walked slowly back to the elevator.

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