"Chiang, this world isn't heaven at all, is it?"

The Elder smiled inthe moonlight. "You are learning again, Jonathan Seagull," he said.

"Well, what happens from here? Where are we going? Is there no suchplace as heaven?"

"No, Jonathan, there is no such place. Heaven is not a place, and itis not a time. Heaven is being perfect."

He was silent for a moment. "Youare a very fast flier, aren't you?"

"I... I enjoy speed," Jonathan said, taken aback but proud that theElder had noticed.

"You will begin to touch heaven, Jonathan, in the moment that youtouch perfect speed. And that isn't flying a thousand miles an hour, or amillion, or flying at the speed of light. Because any number is a limit,and perfection doesn't have limits. Perfect speed, my son, is beingthere."

Without warning, Chiang vanished and appeared at the water's edgefifty feet away, all in the flicker of an instant. Then he vanished againand stood, in the same millisecond, at Jonathan's shoulder.

"It's kind of fun," he said.

-jonathan livingstone seagull