There is a concept most creative writing classes are taught fairly early on, concerning the believability of characters. This concept is a main facet of character development that discourages the creation of "Mary Sue" characters; ones that are pedantic, unbelievable, and take away from the story.
To begin with, the names Rathborne chose for his characters--Malcifious, Dardra, Kindra, even Kevriel--made me wonder if he wasn't just sitting at a computer with a name generator. I can appreciate a 'fantasy' name here and there, but when they become a main device in character development so early in the story--because god knows there wasn't much else going for those characters--there is definitely something lacking.
But the naming is hardly half of what makes me lean away from this piece of writing.
The opening paragraph was the beginning of the rocky, jumbled journey of this piece. "If only he'd put air in her tires" is the line the author offers to try and explain the circumstances that leave the main character a widower. I seriously doubt that the amount of air in her tires influenced whatever accident the wife was in. I don't mind that Rathborne didn't offer much (or any) explanation concerning the wife's death. But if the husband is seriously blaming himself for her death because it was supposedly his job to put air in her tires (which they teach you to do in driver's ed, and if she couldn't have figured it out for herself the wife really shouldn't have been driving in the first place, ergo she died victim of her own negligence) then the husband's psychological situation should have been better emphasized, rather than touched upon in a single sentence and then left.
And I like to think of myself as a fairly forgiving reader. I didn't mind that, as reviewer Meori Gaditris put it, that the "book went from normal life to just plain bizarre." I didn't even mind that the main character doesn't so much as bat an eyelash at the new situation he's thrown into when he is taken directly from his car to 'beyond the veil,' though it would be a little more relatable if he found the setting he was yanked into as remarkable crappy as this reader did.
It's the narrative that I can't forgive; the description of a river that the main character, Vincent, encounters early in the story is incredibly scientific. The "azure waters streaked with rivers of color ranging from turquoise to violet and obsodian" and the "translucent stones whose colors shifted depending on the angle from which they were viewed." The description is so painfully sterile, you could perform surgery on it. Look at me, I'm writing a review and I'm writing better than this guy.
Anyway, long story short, this short story went on for too long. I'm glad this one was free, because I would have tossed my Kindle out the window if I'd had to pay in anything but time--which I wish I hadn't wasted on reading this story.