11: The lessons of age

There was a constant grinding sound coming from the boulder Eudimonia pulled

behind him, struggling every step. Still, his eyes stayed fixed on some

unseen point. The air was cooler now, and the wind was pushing these

three travelers deeper and deeper into the valley of black sea. Walking

close to Eudimonia, she was fixated on his face. The more he struggled

the less the boulder seemed to move. Maybe that’s the way he wants

it. Heresy had not said anything since being introduced with the giant

but instead took up the rear, watching what the other two were not. The growing blue aura that was slowly taking over the valley in front of them.

The wind was kicking up the occasional pebble which kept striking Heresy in the

back of the head. It was blowing fast now, but no one seemed to notice as

their minds were elsewhere. The creaking of her grandfathers rocking chair was muted only by the occasional snore coming from her grandfather passed out in the sun on the front porch of his old farmhouse. It faced west and it was sunset. She was staring at him, how he looked in the slowly disappearing rays. He was so peaceful. After a while he awoke with a grunt, feeling eyes upon him. “Watcha doin over there?” he asked, looking down at her, she was aware she was sitting on the stairs leading up to the porch. She shrugged and walked up to sit on the floor next to her grandfather. “Day-” he began, clearing his throat, “Days always go by… It doesn’t matter what we do. Your young now, but someday you’ll learn to enjoy every minute of it, awake or not.” He exlaimed smiling at her, she was blushing now. “Your papa says you got in some trouble back home?” he asked, she nodded yes. “We all make mistakes, and we all get punished for them in some way. But know this sweetheart, at the end of the day, you gotta be able to accept those mistakes, make your peace, so to speak… Other wise you’ll never move on.”.

“Why do you cry young one?” asked Eudimonia, his voice echoing off the walls of the valley. Turning to look at her he paused and let out a little laugh, “My apologies, I’ve forgotten that would be a rhetorical question with you.”. If she could smiled she would have. Her tears seemed so unreal in this place, as though there was more substance to them other than salty water. Crying had made her- Lighter, that was the only way to describe it. If there was a purpose to this place, it was as speratic as the mind of a human being.

The three began their journey again. Eudimonia took a few steps and paused, allwoing her to pass in front of him. He held his ground as Heresy started to pass him. Eudimonia outstretched his enormous oaktree of an arm in front of Heresy.

“What’s the deal man?” asked Heresy.

“She needs to go on ahead for a bit, can’t you see him?” asked Eudimonia. Up ahead there was a brownish grain of rice standing on end flickering on the grey valley floor. It was her guide. Heresy had not seen him before. He was always hidden in some elemental force. Where was his force this time?

She had seen him as well and continued on in his direction, pretending to not be unnerved by presence here. It felt unusual to know what was coming. That he was coming. It was then that the wind beganto swirl around her and the guide, faster and faster as she approached. The gravel bed began to seep up into the air, blocking out the view of the entire valley. Closer she drew to him. His tattered cloak was sailing far above his head in the swirling tornado of gravel. The rattling of the gravel created a beat that remembered her of something feural and meaningful. If she still knew ages she would have died by now walking up to look him strait in the blind face. He hinted a smile as he found himself instantly to her right shoulder again. Whispering in only a way she could hear, “Accept it. It is apart of you, accept it and move on.”. With a deep sigh he was gone and the gravel rained back down all around her pounding loud enough to wake the dead. Turning to look behind her, Heresy was riding on Eudimonia’s shoulders as they approached her, both of them grinning.