A Line Runs Round The World – Part III

Note: This is the third part of a story circle that  Cameron Garriepy helped me start. Please check here for Part I and here for Part II. Alternative versions can be found on Cameron’s site.

As I made my way through the world, following the line, I saw many people. The young and old were stretched out before me and I could see them all. People of all colors passed by and created no more stir for me than the trees and the rocks. Of course I saw the lame and the ill, the rich and the poor, but their plight was their own and I took no stock with them. If any one of them had seen me, even glimpsed me from the corner of their eye, there would have been no recognition for I was no long with them. I was on my path and as different to they as the stars to the streams.

Sun over treesBut once, I stopped. I do not know why. As I stated before I had long since given up on noticing war and strife. Had ceased to even care about it or the self-induced famines and pestilence I passed. These were all man’s own doing, and I wanted no part of it. Had no part of it. But once, that once.

I was walking near mid-day in a valley of shade amidst leaves and oak when I saw a girl down by a creek. She was all alone and I could not remember how far back I had passed the last village or farm house. Although I was no expert on the area, I did not believe there were any roads or worn paths nearby. She was in my place – the quiet away from places, and her presence called out to me. To this day I don’t know why.

As I walked closer I could see that she was young and looking towards the water of the slow moving stream. Perhaps she was fishing I thought, or reading some book of romantic poetry away from the taunts of brothers and sisters. But even then, even still, I knew she was not. There was a stillness carried on the air as assuredly as the smoke and wind had carried the heat of battle. As markedly as the stench from cities carried far out into the virgin countryside.

I hastened my step to draw near her side. I knew there was no noise I could make, no sound I could utter that she would hear, no one noticed me any longer. But as I grew close, she lifted her head and stared at me with pale green eyes. I stopped. The feeling of no longer being in movement rushed over me and I grew light headed, but her eyes pulled me back down. She was pale skinned with long hair stringing down around her shoulders, but I could not lose sight of her eyes.

Read more