In the Administrative Department of my heart, which is down the hall from Feelings, Major, I wrote down the time you offended me. The clerk, my own silent witness, filled out the forms in triplicate. We wrote your name. We added your number. We added the hurt to the Memory Banks, photocopied and indexed. (It can also be found in the Time Department, under Times You Forgot that I am Able to be Cut by Paper and Burned by Wind.) We shook our heads at the bitter sharpness of the hurt.
We made the Record of the Hurt. We announced it over the loudspeaker, so no cell, no heartbeat, and no breath would ever overlook the danger you present or the pain that you can bring. And then we were proud of our work. We stood quiet in the halls of Everything, hands in our pockets, and waited.
But human still we both remain. And while we were recording, in the most accurate, photorealistic way possible, you grew some more, and changed some more, and so did I. Believing the best yet to come, I was surprised to see that no recording of a single moment could reflect accurately on who you are right now—in this moment, different from the last. Some people say that forgiveness, Destruction of the Record, is for my own benefit.
Perhaps. But perhaps I don’t need you to apply to the Department of Sorry (third floor, two doors down from Master List of Everything Unreasonably Kind), because mistakes are a human condition. There are too many forms and fines and details in the Administrative Apology. I want everything good for you. And for me. And this includes the way we just, as necessary for
beings of our kind, begin again. Expungements and refreshments at noon in the atrium.