If you could visit anyone on the planet right now, who would you go see?
The doorway was a curious thing. For one thing, it stood on its own in the middle of a wide open field. There was no other structure to indicate it had been part of any larger thing, it simply was. For another thing, there were strange symbols carved along the frame. Finn didn’t recognize them, but somehow the words translated perfectly in his head.
The person you need most right now is on the other side. I can take you there but you must find another way back.
Weird. He half expected it to rhyme and found himself to be disappointed when it didn’t. Mysterious inscriptions should always rhyme.
He circled the doorway, trying to understand how it was even standing. The grass in front and behind was flattened as if from a door swinging over it to either side. The message was the same on both sides. It seemed it didn’t matter which side you went through.
But where would it take him? Who did he need?
Curiosity got the better of him and he reached toward the opening. His hand touched the open air where the door should be and met resistance. He pushed, and a crack appeared along the edge of the frame, widening as he pushed further until it opened into a darkened room.
He peered around the side of the doorway on his side. It was still open grassland as far as the eye could see on the back side. He couldn’t see the room from that angle. Steeling himself, he stepped through the boundary and into the room.
The door closed behind him. He opened it again but it was just a broom closet now. The plains were long gone and he had no idea where he’d ended up. There certainly was no person in this room aside from himself.
He found another door and tried it. He had to shield his eyes against the bright lights of a bustling kitchen. Pans and utensils clanged to the floor as cooks and waitresses turned startled faces towards him. “Who the hell are you? What are you doing in my kitchen?”
Finn swallowed hard. The blond man in the chef coat glowered at him. He had no good answer for him. He had no good answer for himself. How was it possible that the person he “needed most” was Gordon Ramsey?!
Notes: I spent all my creative thinking today on what short stories I could revise or expand instead of on this prompt so I had no idea where to start when I sat down to write tonight. I was thinking distant family or long lost love, but that wasn’t getting me far. Even my most distant family is still in the country and that seemed too small. Anyone on the planet and here I am thinking about people relatively close by.
Then I was thinking about Jack from my alien invasion story and how he might want to see anybody planetside after being in orbit for so long, but I couldn’t think of a good enough reason to send him back to Earth even for this prompt. So then I got thinking more abstract. Less of a specific person and more a superlative of a person. The wisest person. The oldest. The happiest. That sort of thing. When I got thinking about how to facilitate that, a portal fantasy seemed the easiest route so I created the doorway. But then I wanted it to be silly so that’s how we got here.
Sorry I didn’t have anything more interesting to read tonight. As I often say, they can’t all be winners. At the very least, I was writing. I think this prompt has great potential. Maybe it will spark something better for you!
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