Heaven - Seventy-five year-old Wilson Masters, a retired bank administrator, was charged a $25 late fee after living a full three months later than God, and doctors, had expected.
"I expected Mister Masters to be up here in heaven on October the seventeenth," said God, ruler of the universe. "However, Mister Masters was able to prolong his death for an added three months. Up here in heaven we have our policies. If you're late on a death payment, you pay an extra fee of twenty-five dollars."
God says the fee is only fair, "what with all the paper work and what-not."
"I didn't want to die," said Masters, now in Purgatory until he pays in full. "I wanted to see my great grandchild born before I went. The doctors said I had six days to live. I defied them, and death, by living another three months in order to see the birth of the child and to say good-bye to my family and friends."
"That's no excuse," says God. "You die when we say. Oh, and by the way - there is an additional fifteen dollar fee for admitting that you are defying death. It's only fair."
God says that Masters will also have to pay rent for his Purgatory stay. "That place isn't cheap," God declared. "People want a free ride wherever they go. Mister Masters, of all people, should understand the concept of charging money for every stupid, little thing you can think of. Oh, and there's an additional ten dollar fee for hearing me say that."
Masters says that he is shocked at God's strict "adherence to policy."
"You think he would cut me a break," said Masters, floating in the black nothingness. "I mean, if someone came to me and begged me not to charge them some silly fee, I would gladly - wait. No, I guess I never did that. Damn! I get it now!"
"That's a ten dollar 'enligtenment' fee," God said.
"How are we supposed to pay all this?" cried Masters' Daughter Debby, 39. "Daddy just wanted to see his first great grandchild and now he has to pay. He lived three months longer than expected by doctors, and even God! He should get a medal!"
God did not agree. "If I let Mister Masters go without paying, then I have to let everyone go without paying. That goes without saying."
In the end, God says Masters must pay, or hang in Purgatory until a family member sells their kid's bike and pays up.
"Oh," God says, "and there's also a fee for the fee that pays for the fee that is charged toward the late fee. And there's a fee for that, too."