December 18, 2009

Chapter 2: Obstacles

The path lay before the Stag Warrior, long and windy, stretching into the distance. Mountains were clearly visible, valleys between, surely these would need to be traversed. Thick forests of thorny bristles lined both sides of the path, boulders of various sizes blocked the way. There was a thought in his mind, one he battled to suppress. This path, this journey ahead, it was a little daunting, this would be the hardest thing he ever did. Taking the first step those few days ago now seemed the easy part. 

Just then, he felt something pulling at his leg, causing him to lose his balance and fall roughly on the dusty ground. Seems he had been dragging something along behind him, and he had come to the end of whatever the "something" was. Of course the "something" turned out to be the rope that he now "found" attached to his ankle. He knew this rope well. It was tied at the other end back where he started, joined to a substance, an object he had been dragging along with him for years. It was big, and heavy, and he had been tethered to it for so long he tended to forget the rope was there. Now, as he wanted, no, needed, to continue on this path, with no turning back, he began to work the knot of the rope, desperately wanting to be free. It was a thick rope however, hewn of the best hemp, and the knot would not loosen.

Searching in his weathered and beaten and now very dusty pack, he dug out a hatchet, short, but sharp, with the handle worn and brittle on the end, some of the wood having been lost from years of use and abuse. Placing the rope on top of a stone, he began to hack at it, one thread at a time, shearing it off. Years of weighing him down, slowing him down were going to come to end come hell or high water. Millimeter by millimeter, swing after swing, he began to cut himself free. Shreds began to fall. Some collected at his feet, others were caught up in the short gusts of wind that blew, to be carried off, never to be seen again.

Finally, after what seemed an eternity, and after countless blows, the rope was severed. He sat for a moment, taking a deep breath. It was done. The last vestiges of what he was, what he had been, were now away, gone, no longer to plague him. What was left now was the knot, and only the knot. He would remember, but not be hampered on his journey.

He smiled. He got up, dusted himself off, and set out again. Toward the boulders, toward the forest of bristles, and the valleys, and mountains. This would not be so bad after all.


Fae said...

I just wanted to let you know that I love what you're writing, and I'm sorry that you're having to go through so much pain to have created it. I'm stealing your button, and I'm also featuring part one and part two on 'Turn-around Tuesday" this week.

I'm looking forward to watching you succeed in your journey. I have no doubt that you'll come through this a stronger man.