BEFORE YOU READ THIS: It is best if you have read the story first, lest you destroy the fantasy experience. It might amaze you to find out how much thought and details exist in the novel. Here we talk about some of those facts and myths:
Who or What is Skelonian?
Skelonian is never formerly identified in the story. The next question, "What is 'Event One'...", settles his purpose, but is he a "god', a "scientist", the "grim reaper", merely the train driver ("Conductor") or just a demonic being? The story leaves it to your imagination. He is whatever your cultural beliefs allow him to be.
What is 'Event One' and how does it relate to the story?
In scientific terms 'Event One' is commonly understood as the 'Big Bang', as in 'The Big Bang Theory' which states that the entire universe (you, me, the computer, planet Earth, the sun and everything) was created by a massive explosion some 13.5 billion years ago (approximately) that seeded the raw materials around to allow all of creation. The subsequent expansion resulting from that explosion is still on-going. This theory flies in the face of many religions which state that we, and the world, were created by a God (or some sort of superior being). Train of Consequences proposes that both ideas are true: the big bang happened, but it was by the design of Skelonian's people (despite his huge ego, his words give away that there were many of his kind with: "when we first lit the furnace and the train did run!" (note the word 'we')). Skelonian further gives his knowledge of the big bang and his presence there when we look at that quote in its entirety, "I was here before the clock of time struck one; when we first lit the furnace and the train did run! I saw the Event One!"
Who is the Main Character?
The train! The train is 'driving' the story along. The train represents the passage of time.
Does Train of Consequences Offer an Alternate Point of View to Our Destination After Death?
Yes. It proposes that there may not be a Heaven or Hell and that our judgement may not be at the 'Pearly Gates'. It asks the question, if nature can recycle everything, then why not our souls, and who controls that process?
Is the Story Offering a Religious Point of View?
Did it Really Happen in a Dream?
Yes! And after seeing Skelonian, Derek's life changed incredibly and by chance: New education, new job, new town, new friends... The dream was vivid, interactive and 3D... like real life.
Why Was This Story Originally Written?
As a final paper for a class in English Literature (Gothic Horror) Derek studied while at Ryerson University. It was later expanded and published with advice from his professor.
Why 11 Past 2?
In the original dream, Derek awoke several times only to find himself still in the dreamscape. Each 'awakening' his bedside clock read 2:11 AM, when he finally awoke for real the clock read 2:11 AM, and the sound of a train whistle could be heard in the distance. In the finalized version, Derek is freed. In the actual dream (and why he woke up), the conclusion sees him staying on the train to disappear into the purple fog with the other condemned passengers.