Book of Life

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"We placed observational stations across the galaxy, all of them pointing at Earth's ancient abode... recording every emitted wavelength, which detailed every action, every event of human history. From four thousand parsecs away, we watched our past unfold. From afar, we saw every drop of rain, heard every contented sigh, bore witness to every lonely cry.

"We recorded all of it. The Library of Alexandria itself opened its doors to us, the final scholars to peruse her collection. Not only them, but every scribe who authored and copied them, down to their exact strokes, and the orders and emotions behind them all.

"This clear cylinder you see in my hand... this is you. A continuous record of your every thought, your every deed. It is the sum total of your worth, a perfect accounting of your contribution to humanity while you first lived, so long ago.

"In it, also, is the anguish and joy you have inflicted upon and granted others. Others have memories, but only in here is the pain and pleasure, grief and ecstasy stored.

"So now you are risen, body made anew before the gates of Heaven itself.

"No one within will suffer another to experience your crimes... And so, it has fallen to me to ask you to give us some justification, to show us some shred of humanity left within you. Should we find none, I am to cast your cylinder - your existence - into the pool behind you, and you will be doomed to be no more.

" speak well, but every impassioned reason you give hides the same claim behind it. That you did not know. Neither did your victims, but such did not spare them from you. What makes your reasoning an exception?

" claimed such authority yourself, while alive. How is it not appropriate?"

"...incorrect. We bring the dead to life, destroy worlds and forge young ones anew. We bend reality itself to our wills, on a scale that you have actively prevented yourself from comprehending. We do not play at godhood. We -are- gods, and we pass our judgment: your memory will be cast to the flames.