Death's Dice

Updated on May 2, 2018
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Matthew Brown is a writer and author from Thanet. He presented videos for About and is a blogger.

Death's Game of Dice

It is whispered in some quarters that when Death comes to claim a soul, that soul may challenge Death to a single game of dice. Should the soul happen to have to hand a single die when he dies, they may challenge Death to a game of luck. You'd be surprised how infrequently that comes up.

In this unlikely circumstance, Death will allow the soul a moment to roll the die. If the soul should choose, they may roll it a second and final time.

Death, it is said, will then roll two dice: A white (or clear) die and a black die. Should the soul that challenges Death win - by luck or skill - having a die showing the higher number, then that soul may live on until such time as that die is turned or rolled to show a losing number.

The game is not without risk. It is said that should Death's white die win the game then the soul will still be taken and left at the gates of Heaven. If by some sad chance the black die of Death should win, then the soul will be taken and left at the gates of Hell.

Tobin Johnson

A soul that did challenge death to a game of dice

Tobin Johnson was a man that, having lived just sixty years - a life of sin and indulgences - was visited in the night by Death. Tobin had laid stock for such a night and by his bedside there sat twin dice. the dice were carved, it was said by the man who sold them to him, from the bones of a saint.

These dice were fine cubes carved with the greatest care to land favourably. Tobin Johnson had, in life, had these dice blessed by holy men and clerics where-ever he went. With these dice, Tobin had amassed a great fortune for where the number one - the deuce - should be was a second six.

It was with these dice that Tobin challenged Death to the game for his life. Death wordlessly accepted the challenge and on the very first roll, a six showed its face.

Death Laughs

His laughter is like the sound of the empty night

Death laughed at Tobin.

"You may laugh," said Tobin, "but I have won. My life's my own."

Death pointed a bony finger at the die and said: "Though your trickery may have earned you much in life, it is appointed unto man once to die."

Tobin smiled at Death and said: "Then roll your own dice but you cannot beat me."

Death laughed with a sound of hollow caverns.

Death rolled the white dice

Tobin knew that he had lost

When Tobin beheld the first die that Death produced he cried out that death was cheating.

"You have chosen your die and I have chosen mine." Said Death. "My dice are, at least, fair."

"But your dice have twenty sides!" Wailed Tobin for indeed they did.

"Yes." Said Death. "And your dice have two sixes."

The white die

The white die
The white die

Death rolled both dice

Tobin learned a fatal lesson

Death rolled the white twenty-sided die. The die rattled on the table like teeth chattering in a grave. The die stopped showing the number nine.

"At least I will see heaven." Said Tobin.

But death did not take him. Instead, Death produced the black die. This Death rolled slowly onto the table. The black die sounded heavy as it rolled - like the closing of a coffin lid. It came to a stop showing twenty uppermost.

Death collected Tobin's soul and departed.

You cannot cheat death

Death is more fiendish than you.


A few notes on this story

This story is a work of fiction and is an original work written by yours truly. It was written and published on and for Squidoo.

Thanks to Psyche who proof read it for me at the start of 2013.

I gave the grammar and sentence structure a spring clean in 2018.


Don't be shy now - would you try to out play Death?

Leave me a comment and let me know if you would take that bet?

Questions & Answers

    © 2018 Matthew Brown

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