After 24 days meditating under a tree, Gautama became enlightened.
His senses sharpened to the point of perceiving all of Samsara.
Maitreya and Kalkin's young pure spiritual essences sat in a spaceless space, awaiting his instruction.
Gautama made a localized image of himself with them, sitting with legs folded, hands atop the side of his knees. Eyes closed.
Maitreya: Master, your arrival enblissens us.
Kalkin: I must know, what have you learned? How can you help us?
Gautama: Maitreya, Kalkin, how nice it is to be in the presence of you both.
Kalkin: As it is to feel your resonance with existence, Master.
Gautama: Ha ha hahahaha, Kalkin, it is already done. How much fun you will have with the Devic and Asuric avatars. Fun, Kalkin, will lead you entertain us all with delight never known. Your path will be like mine, yet much more acute. You will know machinations of great destruction and creation. Honestly, I am envious, as much as a Divine Being can be. Perhaps I can materialize in your era in a favorable incarnation.
Gautama opened his eyes at Kalkin with intense love. Kalkin bursted into tears, and then toppled over, hammering the floor with his fist in riotous laughter. Maitreya, unshaken by this, averted his gaze from Gautama's, focused on the Whole, grateful, considerate, taut, yet vibrating, receptive.
Gautama closed his eyes again and breathed the essence of creation into the room with a few deep breaths. Whole universes that revered him waved to him. Wonder was instilled in Maitreya.
Maitreya: Master, have I been wrong?
Gautama: You could not be more right. I thank you and everyone thanks you, just as they thank me. The pain of knowledge is the greatest of them all, friend. The fruits of your pain, as we speak, give rise to a courageous love, and a thoughtful love, I could not be more satisfied with you.
Maitreya: Master surely there is more that I can do?
Gautama: Nothing is wasted, nothing is left behind. Your own pain is obvious. Marvel in the pain and failures of others. Without Masters and Disciples like you, Kalkin would have no allies, and I would have no one to humble.
Maitreya: Must there truly be pain, Master? Can there be no other way?
Gautama: There must be pain, Master Maitreya. The more pain, the longer the Golden Age, the more resounding the lesson. You are already strong. Transcendent love will be born from regrets, the same ones you wrestle with.
Gautama opened his eyes upon Maitreya, and flashed a big toothy grin. There were herbs stuck in his teeth. Maitreya raised his right hand to point it out, but stopped himself and shook his head, wry smile dressing his face, lips slightly pursed, eyes and forehead raised.
Maitreya and Kalkin bowed deeply. Gautama bowed lightly.
And they all disappeared simultaneously.
In through your nose, deeply out through your mouth.