The gateway loomed up over her, the intricate carvings over the onyx surface coaxing her eyes to wander over the jet surface, never staying in one place for long. There were no handles on the face of it, no keyhole or lock that she could see. The surface, despite being made of stone, looked smooth as silk, and the designs were carved elegantly into the rock.
“Will you go?” A voice echoed in the mist around her, soft and deep. “I can open the doors for you, if you like.”
“Where does it go?” She asked, not bothering to look for the speaker. The doors held her attention completely. “I’m not sure I like them enough to go through.”
“They do not bite.” The voice cajoled her, suddenly taking shape in the form of a tall, robbed figure. “I promise; what lies on the other side is quite… pleasant.”
“This side’s not pleasant, though.” She argued, folding her arms and pouting. “How am I supposed to believe what’s on the other side of it is?”
“You will not be able to know that unless you enter.”
She rocked back and forth on her feet, from heel to toe and then back again, studying the tall, black entrance. The carvings looked like vines, drifting along the walls on either side of the gateway, trailing off into the misty distance. Cool air was radiating off the doors, and the little girl scurried forward and held her hand just above the surface, not making direct contact.
“It scares me.” She said faintly. “I don’t like big things, and I don’t like black things either. All the fairy tales say black’s a bad color.”
“Do you know what black really is?” The figure asked, stepping closer. “Black is the color you get when all other colors mix together. It is color in its purest form, all of them mingling and dancing into one beautiful mixture… But our eyes can only perceive so much, and so it translates to black.”
The girl smiled. “So what’s white, then?”
“The absence of color. When there is no color at all, then you have white- a void, a blank. Nothing.”
Her nose scrunched, eyebrows drawn together in a frown. “Nothing sounds boring.”
“Oh, it is.” A hand landed against the door; long, spindly fingers almost touching hers. “But what lies beyond is not boring, I promise.”
“How do I get in, then?” She asked, looking up into the face of the hooded figure, smiling.
“Knock, and the door will open.”
She looked back at the door, raised her hand, and knocked twice.
There was a long pause, and she glanced at the figure curiously before the door started to open, golden light starting to spill out of the opening. They swung silently inward, and golden lights danced beyond. She giggled, and started to run toward them, only pausing long enough to wave to the figure over her shoulder.
She was swallowed up by the golden light, and the figure straightened, and then dissolved back into the mist. The doors swung closed again, sealing away the golden light for the time being. One more soul, swallowed up by golden paradise.