It is barren, strewn with dying cacti. The only living thing seems to be the sky above you, pulsing faintly. It spits out ashy grey clouds one after another and you can feel its eyes on you, watching you from afar.
Sand billows around your ankles with every gust of wind. It's coarse, much coarser than it should be, but you don't feel it as you begin to walk.
Have you ever felt like this? This lost? This forgotten? You've become one of them. The process has started. Before you know it, you'll be a grain of sand in this world, muddled up with everyone else who ever walked a path across this terrain. Before you know it, you'll be watching someone else appear in the same spot you did, and you'll be guiding them to where you are going now.
One of them appears. You're not afraid. You should be afraid. But you know that you'll come out of this bruised and broken and you've accepted it. You'll be reborn anyways. Why should you fear death when there's another life round the corner?
It's a... He? She? They? You don't really know. Either way, you don't really care. Have you ever cared? They are just another guide, waiting to bring you to the next stage.
"You have arrived," The voice speaks. It sounds like it comes from everywhere, and it makes you shrink a little within your coat. Your coat. Why are you wearing a coat in a desert?
"Aren't you afraid?"
You draw yourself up, a little taller, and stare at the guide in the eyes. They may look scary, with white vessels of blood and the void for a mouth, but their eyes are soft. Forgiving. They know what it's like to be in your position, and they feel sympathy. "No."
"Good," The figure nods. "I'm glad. We shall continue."
They glide upon the sand, with you trudging behind them with heavy footsteps. The sky watches -glares- down at you, its beady eyes following you as you walk.
Sound grows louder as time passes by, the sky clapping with menace as thunder begins and rain rolls down in fat, grey lumps of water. It's unlike any rain you've ever seen, and it sears your skin when it lands on your face. The figure turns and looks at you. You think the raindrop has left a burn mark on your cheek. It turns away again, and carries on.
Rain continues, threatening to roast you like a pig on a spit. What are you now? Hm? What are you? What are you, other than a nothing with something and the human notion of feelings?
Only the brave reach this plain. Only the bravest make it out. You know that. Whispers of this terrain encircled you in life and you have ascended to here now. Make the most out of it should you not return.
You reach the end of the desert. The horizon bleeds in the distance, wailing with despair as it leaves red streaks along the sky. Clouds cry with it, screaming in horror as the rain blasts down even harder. You look down at the ravine in front of you.
"This is the next stage?" You ask the guide. It nods, silent. "I just jump?" Again, a nod.
You were never afraid of heights in life, but even so, the invisible bottom unsettles you. But what can you do? You can't stay here. You were never meant to stay here.