November 9 2006

Looks were exchanged, then the words. The words bantered back and forth. Then there was silence. The silence was deafening. The Old One and the young one backed away from each other, watching, waiting, and planning. He would not have to wait long to find out the fate of this chanced meeting.

He sat alone in his lair thinking what a sad day this had been, the being that shared the lair was attacked and brutalized brought to his knees he laid dying. This being, which lay dying, was quiet. He kept to himself only now and then would he allow brief glimpses into the inner being that truly made him what he was. The bronze skinned being lay dying. His attacker, his brutalizer, of his life, was his heart. His own heart was brutalizing him and killing itself. He sat and watched the life of this being slowly sucked out. It was as if a fire that burned so brightly, so fiercely, now consumed by itself, slowly dimmed into darkness. He watched as the bronze-skinned being was taken away by other beings. Taken to a place where all beings are taken to die. He sat contemplating, thinking, wondering what His fate, his fate would be. Would it be his own body attacking him, his own body killing him, or would it be some other way, He could only wonder.

A sudden movement a shadow passed in front of His face. The young one appeared. His face taut, his body rigid, his hand clenched into fists. They were clenched so tightly they were white as paste. The young one spoke the words slurring from his mouth. His black eyes were cold, and dark, filled with hated of all men. His body pressed forward, closing in on His space.

He reached for his staff to rise. The young one was startled when he rose, he thought his advance would be to intimidate, scare him, and make him cower. Cower like the rest of the beings in the herd. The young one never thought He would rise, but He did raise, He rose to stand. He  knew he was no match for the young one in strength or ferocity, yet He  was not going to cower He was not going to let the young one-off so easily the young one would have to beat He  down. As he stood, the young one attacked. A flurry of fists pummeled him and knocked him to the ground. He laid”there on the cold tile floor beaten and bloodied. The young one fled, as quickly as he had arrived running to gloat about his attack on He and tell anyone who would listed how he had bested He .

He sat on his rack tending his wounds while other beings of the herd stopped to stare and to gawk at him. He sat there not speaking not showing the trauma he had suffered to the common herd of beings. He thought dying like a man was no better than being slaughtered like one of the herd by the vicious young rouges of the herd. It was just life.

The two nobles appeared. The nobles tended the herd, kept the herd together behind the chain link and razor wire fences. The nobles are there to keep and protect the beings of the herd from each other. To protect the herd that roams free on the other side of the fence. The nobles took him to one corral, then another. He was then hobbled and taken by two other nobles to see the alchemist. The nobles wanted the wizard to inspect him. As he was hobbled and led to see the wizard, he watched through his old eyes as the young one was led by another noble. The young one, free of any fetters or hobbles, crossed the compound to his appointed place. He was hobbled; he was watched by the two thousand eyes of the herd. He walked upright, proud. The nobles prodded and asked the same old questions. The ones they had said without meaning a million times before. He listened, he had his pride, and he would not speak. The nobles would be told anyway by the community tongue of the herd. He didn’t need to speak or tell the story. All those who witnessed the event would tell all, and the young and strong would prevail.

He was herded to a segregation corral, locked into a pen. His garments were removed, leaving him naked. He was given garments old, tattered, worn. His bedding was the same. Locked up in his pen alone, cold, sterile, smelling of foul sweats and bodies of unwashed beings. The floors, walls, everything dirty from daily use and only vain attempts had been made to clean these pens. None of the attempts had been successful.

As He settled into his pen listening to the cacophony of bellows from the young rogues who were also in their own pens, sometimes the nobles would put two in a pen. He sat in his despair listening to the myriad of voices each one trying to be heard over the rest. He sat, he pondered, and he watched the sun set into the west. He knew that he too was like the sun. He had shined brightly once, even if it was for only a brief moment in time. Now he too was like the sun He was slowly sinking out of sight. However, the sun would rise once more. He had his doubts if he would rise again to start the day anew. He began to feel stirrings of emotions long-lost forgotten ones. These feelings soon passed, but no doubt left in their wake a memory. He did not mind the solitude of his pen. He sat in his silence. His mind frozen in thought waiting to see if a new day for He would begin.

He laid down. His mind quiet, his eyes closed. He listened to the herd as they bellowed gibberish to each other. He knew not what they said. He knew he had died a little more that day, and the nobles continued their march as they had a million times before.

He was jostled from his sleep. The sound of sabers rattling, the scraping and clanking of metal against metal, steel against steel. His head began to clear that sound that awoke him, the sound of sabers. NO!Just the familiar sound of keys as the nobles locked and unlocked doors to feed the herd as the nobles had done millions of times before.

It surprised him that he had awakened. He lay swathed in the ragged bed linen. His body ached from long forgotten traumas and the new trauma from the abuse of the young rouge. He stretched and moved to dissipate some of the pain, but some pain he felt would never go away. He reached for his staff to help him rise. He took comfort in the staff, the gnarled surface worn smooth by the hands of many generations before him. His predecessor passed the staff to him when the being died. The staff gave Him comfort and just as much despair. He had no offspring to pass the staff or a name onto when He died.

He ate the gruel in small bites, hoping to no avail the taste would improve with the next morsel of gruel. He looked at the gruel, then at the rack where he had slept it was quiet, he could hear himself breathe. He rose; walked to the rack, fell crumpled into the tattered and disheveled bed linen. There he lay, his eyes staring, his mind blank. He would try to sleep.

He woke to hear the nobles shouting. The herd bellowing the clatter of keys, the banging of doors locking and unlocking as the nobles fed the herd a noonday meal a lump of some kind of potato, some bread, a morsel of cheese, and chicory to drink. Not even hot chicory, it was as cold as the heart of a crone. He tasted and picked and again He could not bring him to partake of the feed. He waited until the nobles picked up the trays with the uneaten feed and He returned to his rack.

He awoke once more, the sun shedding its light through the barred window. The blazing brightness of the light hurt His eyes. His eyes shielded He went to the faucet. The old battered cup in his hand and drew water to quench his thirst. The tepid stale water only added to his melancholy. He took another drink of water and swallowed. His stale drink would only cure the physical thirst in him. The mental thirst was parched dry, dry as sun-baked, bleached bones in a desert.

It has been almost 3 days since he was segregated from the herd. He had not seen any of the nobles to hear of his fate. All he could do was ponder his fate. What would be his punishment?

His thoughts drifted away while he was eating his meager feed there was enough food to keep the wolves in his stomach pacified. He had a little fruit to keep scurvy at bay, but nothing substantial to keep His mind alert. His hopes again sinking with the setting sun, another day done as it had a million times before. He died a little more as this day slowly faded into the blackness of night.

He noticed movement on the floor. Water a flood of water pouring in under the door flooding His stall. He used his towel to dam up the water at the door but it was too late, the water was an inch deep from wall to wall. He crawled up on the rack. The young rogues flooding the stable an irresponsible and naive response to something as dumb as the feed the nobles provided wasn’t hot. He asked himself, “what do the heathens and rogues wish to eat?” Do they expect a banquet? A banquet with the finest meat and fish, the purest water and wine, the finest fowl that flies, all in succulent gravies and sauces.

They will never have that here. These rogues may never know the sorrow they wrought upon themselves or others. He slowly shook his head and began cleaning his stall. Laying his towel on the floor and then wringing it in the basin. He repeated this task over one hundred times. The humidity climbed to almost a hundred fold, condensing on the cold glass of His window. He covered in sweat; his tattered garment clung to his body. The air smelled of stale water, the sweat clinging to him. His clothes damp. He ached and shivered from the cold and the damp. He thought of cursing the nobles, but he couldn’t. He could only curse the rogues in the herd that had caused this woe to befall him. He crawled cold, exhausted, and damp into his rack he covered himself with the tattered linens and tried to sleep. His s melancholy only increased the gloom and darkness closing in on his mind. His solitude was surely his prison. The old died a little more today as he had done a million times before.

He awoke to the clanking of keys. The smell of stagnant water and mold the Aroma of putrid citrus maybe oranges He thought. These smells turned His stomach. He turned over, buried his face in the tattered frayed bed linens. He gagged his way back to sleep.

The days slipped by counted by the setting sun. The days became weeks. The weeks became months. The months became seasons. He counting by seasons all sense of time lost. Feed passed in the tray sent out the clank of keys. The locking and unlocking of doors and He sat. His melancholy hung on him like the fog. His mind numb, He just sat. For He time just stopped. His life just stopped. He still breathed, his heart still beat, his body went through the daily motions, but He just quit living. He beat, he had tried, he looked through his tired old eyes at all the despair and pain and sorrow, and He sat and waited.

On the 5th day, although it seemed an eternity, He was interviewed by the nobles. He learned that even to resist being beaten, self-protection, He is as guilty as the young rogue who beat him. Now He awaits his fate while the nobles decide. He tired and lonely waits.

He looked into himself. He saw the freckle faced kid whose blue eyes sparkled in the light of the day. The young one laughed, showing his missing front teeth. He saw for the first time the love and trust, and the eagerness to explore. He saw the quest and thirst for knowledge the kid had in him. He laughed and played, he was amazed at the world around him. He chased a butterfly, blew a dandelion flower in the winds watching it float away. The kid was full of love and trust the child knew how to love he knew what sorrow was for his age of five. The young child was happy. He also saw the young child cry in pain from the hurt and the broken trust.

He looked into the child’s eyes. He learned to cry. He cried for what was done to the child. The abuse the child felt and endured so it killed the child within him. He looked again into himself only to see the hollow black eyes and emaciated body of the child still within him. He died today, died a little more, as he had a million times before.

He found out the fate of the bronze-skinned one he had grown befriended. The bronze-skinned one had died that fateful day in November, and again He felt his soul die a little more as it had a million times before.

As the old, one sat looking through the cell bars feeling sorry for him, which was not a common feeling for him. Through the bars, night had fallen. The artificial lights of the compound washed over him in an eerie bath of yellow blue-white light. He stared into it. The night He thought that after five and a half decades, He had nothing to show for his time or his ill-spent time in this world. What was the plan for him? His destiny some say god’s plan. He, not believing in God would leave his fate to some other chance. On the other hand, luck of the draw. Was He to be unknown and forgotten? On the other hand, was he to be famous or even infamous, only time would tell and His destiny had yet to be fulfilled?

He said he did not know love or hate. He was not sufficiently truthful about this. He had known love as a child. That love killed by abuse and a broken sacred trust. The young one learned to hate and as of today, He has put all his will for truth. His will to hate all his power to hate directed this hate at the one who abused and broke the trust with the child. He didn’t have a spare portion of hate to point toward any other person as He sat in his cell. He started to reclaim the hate from the one he had focused it on. He akin to having his blinders removed saw so much around him that he could focus his hate on. The nobles kept him penned into and with the herd. He began to hate the being in the herd and cell those like them. This was a change in him. He never would have suspected. He torn between the ways he had lived as a timid man and in some ways a coward, the old man had sworn an oath as a child that he would never be like the one who betrayed him. He tried hard not become the betrayer. He lost himself between the betrayed and the betrayer. He loved but didn’t love. Hated only one and didn’t hate. He felt terrible sorrow for the down trodden, .the starving, the victims of violence or disaster. In addition, at the same time He reveled in the pain of others. He had not caused their pain However, wallowed in the pleasure of their pain.

Hesiod drifted back to that little one that was hidden inside him. He had to kill or be rid of that one and any others that lurked within him. He would talk with the noble alchemist to find a potion that would kill the inner beast. He rested his head in his hands, his mind dizzy and at times his head felt as if He floated in a boat at sea. His head still pounded with each pulse of His heart. It had been five days since he had taken the potions and pills the alchemist had given him. A young noble wizard came to His pen and gave him his pills and potion. He took several of the pills. It seemed to help the pounding in his head. He sighed he closed his eyes. His thoughts remembered a saying he had once heard, “He who despises himself, nevertheless esteems himself, thereby as a despiser.” He despised so much of himself. With those thoughts bounding around in his head, he slept.

He woke to the same familiar sounds and to a grey overcast dismal day. He chuckled to himself and thought, “Just lovely, a day to match how I feel now I am reminded twice as if I needed reminding of ho\w I felt.” He sat staring blankly at the bleak lifeless walls of his cell, his prison. His mind wandered through the dreams and glimpses into his past. He could not forget the horror he saw in the face of the child. The child’s body and mind were shattered

He shivered. He knew that he was that child and now that child was a demon in him wanting and hungering for something, He wasn’t too sure about what the hunger was. What did he want? Was it revenge? On the other hand, was it to be set free? He could only wonder. Did the child within these want these things? On the other hand, did something else need these? He sat in silence thinking, not knowing what to make of these thought. He wanted to free the child hidden in him or kill the demon child within.

He thought if the child wanted revenge on whom should he take this revenge, and to what level? There was no one to take revenge on. The betrayer was dead. He knew he was dead, he had seen him take his last breath and die. The child within had not the use of eyes to see the betrayer die. He had only the word of a stranger, a being sent to him to protect the child from any further betrayals. He after these many years was still a stranger to the inner child. He, through his dreams or nightmares, he could no longer tell a dream from a nightmare these days. He saw glimpses of the shadow. The shadow that had inflicted more pain and abuse on He than anyone could tolerate he was driven to the edge of doom. The shadow stepped through the door willingly into nothingness and fell toward the light of salvation. The shadow died on the rocks of despair and pain. The shadow was beyond good or evil. The shadow had vanished much as the child had done. He saw the being climb out of the pit off the rocks back into the gloomy dark recesses of his time, hoping to be forgotten. He like the shadow was vanishing into the black Netherlands of nothingness. He could see many times the disappearance through the evolving of a new being in the same being. The new being died a little in his rebirth as it had done a million times before.

He sat alone weighing the thoughts, seeing which had truth and value to those that had untruth and no value. He would have to pick what truth and value he desired. He did not relish this task before him. He needed help. Maybe the alchemist and wizard with the help of the sorceress would mix a potion to end the shadows in his mind. Subdue the torments that plagued him. He could think no more. He was at an end. He would suffer his fate as only He could in solitude.

I looked deeply into His eyes. I was shocked at what I saw. That image in His s eyes that image I saw was I. In addition, what I saw made me die a little more as I had done a million times before. It was dark when the nobles came. They told him to pack his belongings. He knew that he wasn’t going to be let out turned out into the herd at night. He asked the nobles, “Where are you taking me?” They responded with a simple sentence, “A new pen waits.” He tied up in the tattered linens all he had brought with him and what the nobles had given him in the tattered linens. He was shackled like a being to slaughter to another pen. In the pen was another being. He was to join this new being. He wasn’t solitary any more.

He looked at the other being. Could it be? Could it be the one he traveled with on his way to this prison? Yes, yes it was. He remembered the experience. After the nobles sentenced him, they sent him to a castle, past the River Styx. The river that split the country like a wound from the north to the south gashing the midsection wide open, separating all things east and west. The castle towered over everything around it dark, dreary, cold. He watched, as he was lead into the bowels of the castle, locked into a dungeon with many others. They were waiting, just waiting for the nobles in their own good time. The nobles would send all the beings to a permanent place. He would be here until 2009 He became acquainted with many others in the bowels of the castle. He lived here. He existed in the dungeons.

The days in the castle were much like the days here. The clanking, clicking of keys. Door unlocked and locked. The beings in the herd assembled in a common area. There they were fed and left to mill around aimlessly. Most seemed lost; others exercised to work off tensions. A few read whatever scrap of book they could find. He met a being named J.

after 4 or 5 weeks He and selected other beings were herded into the belly of a flying beast. This beast soared aloft springing free of the confines of the ground, traveling at a great speed and height heading east leaving the castle and the pits of desperation to the west.

The big white beast settled on the ground. The nobles took up position all around, like the boxing of the compass. The herd was led off and under guard. The nobles marched the herd to waiting wagons. He and the being J. were loaded into a large wagon, and then delivered to the compound surrounded by tall fences and razor wire. All the beings that came that day were processed by nobles, alchemist, wizards, and then sent to the compound and to the stables where they had been assigned. He and JA were separated after arrival and reunited in the pens of hell for their misbehavior. He felt some relief that now he had someone to talk to. The new pen was away from the irresponsible, bombastic, boisterous lout he had been housed within the cell block. He and the being J. talked and He settled in. He relaxed a little, still cautious and anxious. However, bad as it was, still it was better than yesterday and still He died a little. His soul died a little more that day like it had done a million times before.

He awoke to a clear, cold day he still had heard nothing from the nobles. He ate the cereal for his breakfast and He returned to his rack to sleep. About midday,the nobles came and told he was to be moved to a new pen. He  closed his eyes, shook his head, and thought what else can they do to him that they already haven’t done He  packed his meager belongings and waited and waited, and waited some more. He sat. The nobles never came to move him or give him a reason why.

He sat and waited. The nobles told him the sorcerers were here to see him. He fettered, shackled, and hobbled was lead through the maze of pens to the appointed place. The sorceress entered the room. She listened to him. She advised him that it was good to feel the old feelings, and live them the way the feelings were supposed to be felt. He told her of his anxiety and his increased depression. She said she would contact the wizard. The wizard could help him with a potion or a pill.

He thanked the noble sorceress. Then he was taken back to his pen where he sat and thought about all the feelings that were flowing through him. He had never felt before like this. He was amazed at the agony these feelings were causing. He was afraid, he was afraid of the unknown. Of what he would become when the feeling he had that he had hidden from all were released. He rocked and cradled his head in his hands.

He awoke to a cold, damp grey morning. His cell, his solitary compartment was also cold and damp. He shivered, drew himself up, and bundled the rags around him. He sighed and shook his head and sat back contemplating what would be in store for him today.

He reached over to get the pills the alchemist had left for him. He took a few swallowed them dryly. He sat breathing slowly. He stirred shortly then was quiet again. He watched his cell as it began to brighten. The sun had broken through the clouds illuminating the cell walls with dazzling bright white light. He looked closely at the walls. He saw the stains and the dirt left behind by the beings that had been in this cell prior to his arrival. His stomach turned. He quickly shifted his thoughts to something else. Anything else that would take his mind off the filth he was living in.

His stoic face began to crack. He smiled a little as he remembered the phone call he had, had with his beloved. She was okay. She missed him. She was displeased He had been bloodied in the short battle he had with the lout, which is why He is in this predicament. His beloved talked of many things. Her children and grand children her three pets that were her children since her own children were grown and on their own. He was happy when he talked to his beloved Jo. He knew it would be another full moon passing before he could talk to her again. It would be before the Christian holiday they called Christmas. He was lucky to have been able to call so close to the day of thanksgiving, a celebration to give thanks for what you have. He nodded he had thanks? He thought, yes he was thankful. He thanked the spirit of life for keeping him alive, though He yearned for an end. His paradox as much as he wanted to live, he could not shake the feelings of death in death. Would He was better off? He thought; in youth, to seek death in a battle was a brave and noble thing to do, but as one became older, the mature one thought to seek his enemy’s death was a far nobler thing to do. Why was it even noble to die? He couldn’t answer.

He sat thinking he had heard others in the herd and the nobles both talking of a thing called hope. Hope and optimism He thought what those things are. Hope in what sense to desire with some expectations of attainment and optimism an opinion that everything is for the best and will be good. Was hope like praying? He thought, praying, hoping for a change that never materialized, and optimism as hope is like praying that everything is for the best and its own good. Yet, He knew that if he were to change, to see his beloved, to grow old he too would have to hope and be optimistic. Perhaps pray. No, He would not pray to the spirit he had prayed to when the old needed it the most. He was forsaken, left to suffer at the hands of the betrayer and then maybe just maybe. He thought that the spirit had intervened after He was betrayed the first time. After that, He never felt the pain He remembered all the incidents but never felt the pain anymore. Was this God’s, answer to His prayer? He knew not. Was it possible? He would ponder this thought in this solitary time of his loneliness. He slept then awoke to the sounds of movement.

His roommate was pacing the floor back and forth back and forth. He sat up watching this young being pacing and worrying. He thought to himself, “What does that young being have to worry about?” He, as miserable as he was, still worried about what would be his fate. Was this young being as worried as he thought or was he just that way? He did not know the answer.

He knew that at one time he was different. He knew he had all the emotions; Love, sorrow, surprise, fear, anger, hate, empathy, sympathy, and the myriad of other emotions that are combinations of one or more of those like jealousy, pity, greed. He sat thinking, trying to devise a way where he could begin to learn about these emotions. To use those emotions His soul was bitter, lonely, starved. He needed to do this but in a way where the others in the herd would not notice these changes. Was it possible for him to accomplish this act of self-reconstruction this emotional face-lift, without being noticed by the herd? He thought he could answer the question of those who asked him what was different or what they perceived as difference. He asked himself those questions as he had done a million times before. He shivered. Fear came into his mind, fear of what might happen to him. Would these changes have a positive effect on him and those around him, or would he lay laying his soul open for all those beings in the herd to snipe and taunt him? He took a deep breath and let out a sigh. He would ask the sorceress where he should begin. He knew deep in his heart, to begin he would have to rid his soul of the shadows and destroy the child that dwelt in him without destroying himself in the process.

He began to relax a little. A plan, a diagram, a blueprint for His self-reconstruction was what he needed to formulate. Systematically from the cellar, He thought that he could no longer be exoteric he had to become esoteric. He had to not look into himself, but look at himself from the inside out. He had been hurt and betrayed as He sat thinking he had hurt himself. He felt sorrow for his actions and for those he had hurt and He felt sadness in his soul. Sadness He could understand not the sadness that spiraled out of control plunging his soul into darkness, tormenting him, turning all reason inside out. Yet, He could understand this sadness within him. He both pleased and surprised at this new revelation sat back and rested his body as he had done a million times before. He had reached the bottom of the pit he had seen as a young one. He had fallen once more; he had truly reached the jagged rocks that carpeted the floor of the pit. He looked at his body; his body was old and worn. He looked for the torn flesh, the broken bones. He looked to see where his lifeblood was leaking from him. He did not see any blood. He felt no torn flesh or broken bones. He looked inside his own
mind. He saw the torn ragged flesh of his brain. His scars, old scars, old injuries. His scars were only in his mind. He had to overcome these scars.

He awoke to a new day. A day of thanksgiving the day was clear, the sun shining brightly with just a hint of a chill n the air. He stood gazing out the barred window, seeing the cloudless blue skies. The yellow-orange sun shined its light and warmth on His face. He felt the warmth on his face and felt the warmth penetrate deep in his cold black heart. His heart began to warm. He looked at the beauty about him, something he hadn’t seen in a long time. He wouldn’t dwell on these thoughts too long. He would save them to savor in more detail when he was alone and solitary. He didn’t know why this was happening now, these feelings. If anything, He thought that he should be sinking in melancholy thought. He should have been envying the longing for death, but for some unknown reason He wasn’t thinking of this. He was grateful to be alive. This alone surprised him. He returned to his rack, he began to write his thoughts. He would write, and then pause. During the pause, his face was almost void of expression, placid, almost tranquil; he would begin to write again. What was he writing? To whom and what about those questions He would answer in his own good time. He sat back, pushed his glasses up on his nose, and wrote. The words poured from him like wine from a bottle. The torrent of words running across the page; line by line, then as quickly as he started he stopped. He thought. You could see him thinking, wondering, and pondering. It was a very odd feeling to have these hidden emotions begins to rise.

Popping to the surface of the brain with a splash and a turgid boil of water, like an emergence, a birth of emotions, that had lain dormant for many years. He wrote, capturing these thoughts and the feelings that began to awaken him. The feelings unwound, stretching, searching for their place, in his heart and in his mind pushing the shadow out of existence. He stopped writing. He stared into space seeing everything and nothing. He didn’t want these feelings to take flight. He had to free them; he had to free them into his gilded cage within him. He saw the tragedy and sorrow of the being in the herd. This tragedy and sorrow stretching back eons upon eons. This tragedy and sorrow was inescapable to the herd, and this too was the plight of the nobles. He for the first time saw the moral decay the rise of amoral and immoral beings. The nobles who were not much different from the herd of beings they commanded. The putrid stench of the beings and nobles overwhelmed the senses of him. As he looked about seeing for the first time the individuals in the herd, he saw within them the hate and fear, the loathing and the jealousy, the greed the lies, the deceptions and deceit that they all tried to play on each other. He sat in his solitude watching; not believing what he had always known was true. Each of the beings and the nobles alike were themselves not only the betrayed but also the betrayers of their morals.

He seeing, feeling, felt sorrow. He knew how they felt. Choked by his empathy, He again pondered his thoughts, wandering from one end of reality to the other, he was appalled what he saw and what he felt. To him, this was truly a new beginning. He knew not what had caused all this emotion to erupt as they did within his mind and body. His soul ached in pain, his heart cried for multitudes of the beings in the herd and his heart cried for the nobles as well. He sat stoically, his mind heart and soul awash in a foaming, frothing sea of emotions. The myriad of emotions growing, crashing into his body like the surf crashes into rocks some violently brutal, some barely making a ripple on a placid surface of his being Each one seeking its own space and time. He stopped writing, rubbed his hand across his pate, and sighed. What, oh what had happened to him?

He sat back, slipping his glasses off his face. He steeples his finger, resting his chin on them He closed his eyes. His thoughts racing He had never been this way. He shook his head as he had done a million times before. He sat back on his haunches, slowly rocking himself back and forth. Back and forth His thoughts defining what each feeling of emotion were. He had to slow these thoughts down. He began his meditations. As He rocked, his thoughts drifted into nothingness. A kaleidoscope of colors and emotions He began matching the color to the feeling, adding the nuances to give each what he hoped was right. He worked with these pieces as if it was a puzzle. Ah yes, a puzzle that would solve the riddles of His life He meditated He knew that all of the emotions need a power of their own. However, He could not seem to learn what each was. He had to draw on distant, long forgotten memories. In addition, memories are not a guarantee of what actually was. The memory would always yield to the power of the will. He felt alone; he needed something to help him put all of these feelings in their proper place and perspectives. He knew the answers would come. He had to be patient and wait. He smiled and began to write once more, the words came steadily to him.

As he wrote, his hand began to find the tempo in the words. The sentences he had written, page after page, yielded under His pen. His hand sometimes trembled at what he was pulling from his conscience memory. He tried hard to sort out the true memories from the ones over time his mind had adulterated and twisted to protect him from the pain. He had invented new memories to mask the memories that were too horrible or painful to remember. He began to tear down walls he had built to protect himself from the hurts of life. Walls so laboriously built stone by stone, one on top of the other concealing, hiding, protecting the ever-growing number of wounds he had suffered, and now as he began to tear the walls down the stones fitted so closely. Mortar with the cement of his pain, He chipping away at the barricade the very barricades that protected him from harm He knew he was preparing his mind and soul that they might again be wounded. Yet, these new wounds would have to be left open to heal as He learned to cope with his new life. As the stones began to fall, tumble from the precipices of His mind; through the cracks in the stones, a light began to penetrate the darkness. He shaded his eyes to the growing brightness. Rays of light began t appear from the cracks like searing
bolts of light burning into his colorless skin. He felt the pain from the lights, and the over-whelming warmth that followed and bored deep into his soul. His soul began to feel alive and he began to see. To see all things as new, as different He was amazed at how things could be any other way than they had before the blacks and whites and grays began to dissolve into motley colors. He closed his eyes as he had done a million times before, and watched the colors grow, evolve, develop, and expand. He began to feel peace within him. His tranquility was shaken, disturbed. As He looked up, he rose on his rickety bones to talk to the noble who had arrived. The noble told him in a week or two he would be turned loose to rejoin the herd. He took solace in the words, although he was apprehensive. Here he could think and change without anyone noticing the changes; but then again, He thought what better way to hide something than in plain sight. He would go back to the herd and mimic them while he reconstructed his life and soul. Reconstruction was a word that truly described this process. He was sore. He knew there were other words, more powerful words, more revealing words, which would fully describe the torment, the agony, and the pleasures, that He would finally know.

He had trepidations about all of this. One noble said, “You have been broken for so long and you are used to it. Why change it?” He pondered this question. The old ways, the broken ways, brought him to this despair in his life. This prison for his body and mind He had truly fallen into the abyss. He could see nothing else to do, no way else to turn, no other direction for him to follow except up, up, from the bowels of his own hell.