Scrambled Hearts



a charming tale by J. W. Wargo

Two eggs were rolling together down the sidewalk at approximately sixty-two miles per hour.  Both eggs happened to roll through a very minute pocket dimension outside objective reality when the end of the world occurred. The eggs emerged from the pocket dimension and found themselves in an endless void. They continued rolling onward.

Thirteen point four billion years later they came across a singularity. The first egg stopped next to the dimensionless being, the second kept rolling.

The first egg cracked open and from inside it emerged a life insurance salesman and an ancient goddess nobody ever talks about anymore. "Huh," the singularity snorted, "Never would've expected to see you with the likes of him."

The goddess became very irritated by this remark. "Is it really that difficult to imagine I like to date outside my supernatural sphere," she said.

"No," replied the singularity, "But what could he possibly have to offer you?"

The goddess hadn't really thought about it before. She knew her existence had grown kind of monotonous. Over the ages, her worshipers had dwindled down to practically nothing. A while ago, she had gone to earth and gotten a job as a server at Poot-'N-Annies, an all-night diner located near exit 444 of Interstate 33, middle of nowhere America. She had grown content with her new life, but something was still missing.

Harold the life insurance salesman was traveling on business and stopped into the "Poot" for some coffee. He had been driving in the egg eighteen hours straight and needed that final helping push to get home. Delirious from sleep deprivation, he began thinking out loud things he normally wouldn't tell strangers.

"What'll ya have, hun," said the goddess, giving her best customer service smile.

"I was bitten by a black widow when I was a child," Harold muttered back.  Coffee."

The goddess was taken aback. Her server instincts kicked in. "B-" she started, "B-black?"

Harold looked up from the salt-shaker and stared at her. She instantly regretted asking, it must have sounded so cruel to him. Harold merely shrugged.

"Is there any other kind," he asked.

The goddess was insanely smitten. She brought out two black coffees and they talked until dawn. She quit her job that morning and joined him in his egg, rolling off into the sunrise.

"I don't know, maybe his honest demeanor," the goddess said. "He treats me as an equal, not like the omnipotent immortal that I am. I think that's what I've been looking for all these millennia."

The singularity looked at Harold. "You think she really loves you?"

Harold wasn't one to waste an opportunity.

"You know, the first few hundred million years or so after a Big Bang can be dangerous.  Are you insured?"

The second egg ended up rolling into a pot of boiling water. The heat eventually split it apart to reveal a new universe inside, one with no life-insurance salesmen and punctuated by the sound of a weeping goddess lamenting the loss of someone she'll never meet.