“Light travels faster than sound, which is why some people appear bright until you hear them speak.”
Written for Linda G. Hill’s One-Liner Wednesday prompt. Image credit: Nikada at Getty Images
Written for Linda G. Hill’s One-Liner Wednesday prompt. Image credit: Nikada at Getty Images
This is really quite depressing. They laugh at me. Call me a lightweight. Say that all I am good for is being a bookend for books I can’t even comprehend.
How can they be so cruel? I don’t deserve this, you know. I may not be the brightest bulb, but I do my job. It’s not easy sitting here all day long, mostly by myself. Why can’t they see and appreciate that I’m holding up my end. I’m doing my part and you don’t hear me complaining, do you?
Can you imagine what would happen if I left my post? I’ll tell you what would happen. Everything would be askew. Nothing would line up. Instead of order, there would be chaos. Things would be fall apart, that’s what would happen.
But fine. Let them laugh if they want to. Let them mock me. Someday they’ll be sorry. Someday, I’ll suffer a burnout from doing this thankless job day in and day out. And then they’ll be left sitting here in the dark.
Then they’ll miss me and the little bit of light I bring into their pathetic lives. That’s when they’ll see that I’m the one who was keeping everything together. That’s when they’ll appreciate what I did for them. That’s when they will miss this little light of mine and how I let it shine, let it shine, let it shine.
Written for this week’s Photo Challenge from Mindlovemisery’s Menagerie. Photo credit: Winsome Woods.
I don’t know who originally said this. Hey, maybe it was me!
Written for this week’s One-Liner Wednesday prompt from Linda G. Hill. Photo credit: Tom Grimbert at Unsplash.com.
The thick clouds finally parted, allowing the light from the large, full moon to illuminate the frozen landscape, revealing the path forward for the weary wanderer toward the isolated castle. She shielded the flame on her staff from the cold, brisk wind before pushing forward.
Step by step, she pressed on, bound and determined to reach her destination before she succumbed to hunger and the elements.
About two hours later, desperately fighting exhaustion, she approached the gates of the castle. There was a large, brass bell overhead, with a thick rope hanging down. With her last bit of strength, she reached up and pulled down on the rope. And then she passed out.
Light from a bright sun came streaming through the windows of the large bedroom, waking the wanderer up from a deep sleep. She opened her eyes to see a man standing beside her bed holding a tray. He asked her to sit up and placed a tray of food on her lap.
“I trust you’re well rested, m’lady,” he said.
“How long have I been asleep?” she asked.
“About a day and a half, m’lady,” he responded.
At that point, another man walked into the room. “Leave us,” he said to the man who had brought in the tray. The tray-bearer bowed and departed.
Once they were alone, the remaining man said to the woman, “You have passed the penultimate challenge, albeit just barely. Now it’s time for your final challenge. Are you ready?”
“I am, sire,” she said.
Teresa, the Haunted Wordsmith, has this habit of starting a story and then pawning it off on another blogger to write the next part of the story. The “rules” are simple.
Teresa tagged Michael (Morpethroad), who tagged Crispina (Crimson Prose). Then Sadje (Keep it Alive) ran with it before tagging me.
So here’s what we have so far.
Far beyond the city, in the middle of nowhere, sat a tiny chapel. No one knew who built it, why it was in the middle of nowhere, or why any traveler in need would always find the light on – but I know these things. I am alive because of Father Chris and the little chapel in the middle of nowhere.
I just turned eighteen and was so sure of myself. I knew everything I ever needed to know – at least I thought I did. I was an adult and didn’t need anyone’s permission to leave. So I did. I left home the morning of my birthday with a few clothes and what little money I had stuffed in a backpack. Mom and Dad weren’t up yet, which made it a little easier not having to listen to Dad ask why or listen to my Mom cry and ask me to stay. No, it was better the way I did it. At least it seemed that way at the time.
I boarded the Number 3 bus heading out of Jasper and …
And here’s what Michael wrote:
… noticed the light on in the chapel. I was curious as it was a shade of green I had not seen before. In the vestibule was Father Chris. He was a tall man, taller when he stood up, and he was standing there looking at me as I passed.
I watched, as around him, the green light seemed to throb as if suspecting I was flying the coop of my hometown. He was dressed in his customary black, but his clerical collar radiated a blinding white light. I looked away with a sense of betrayal and guilt.
I looked back through the window of the bus and found myself just passing the chapel, green light and Father Chris. This disturbed me, as the bus appeared to be travelling at a rate of knots by now having cleared the town limits.
Three times this happened, and I started to feel stuck in some sort of ground hog day. I then pulled the stop cord above me and alighted.
As the bus moved away I saw across the road the chapel, now dark, lights gone and Father Chris standing in the doorway in his radiant collar.
I found myself crossing the road and coming up to Father Chris who….
Here’s Crispina’s Addition:
… opened his arms as if he’d embrace me, his face collapsing into a picture of welcome relief.
“What is it?” I asked, for surely something had happened to cause him distress. But more than that, I wanted to know what that green light I had seen.
“Oh, my lad, my lad,” he said. “I’m so glad you have come. I’m to have a visitation.”
“A …? What, as in Jesus? Or a saint? Or …” I slapped my hand over my mouth “… no, you don’t mean the devil? Is that what the green light?”
He flicked his fingers into my face. “Silly boy! That ‘green light,’ as you called it, is just off Old Bess. But Old Bess is the problem.”
(I’d best explain. Old Bess was Father Chris’s exceedingly antiquated computer—steam-powered I shouldn’t wonder, it’s so old).
“So what’s up with her?” I asked.
“I think she’s not well. She refuses to access my records. And I have the bishop due any moment to inspect them. I don’t suppose …?”
The way he looked at me … what could I do but check out the ancient machine.
The fool of a Father Chris. He’d crammed a communion wafer into the thin slot of the floppy drive. I pulled it out and held it out accusingly. He colored up.
“But, my boy, my boy, I am so grateful. And just in time, for, Hark! That’ll be the bishop now.”
And true enough, a vehicle of sorts was drawing up outside the chapel. But when I looked out of the door …
Here’s what Sadje added:
… it didn’t look like a sort of transport the bishop would use. It was strangely shaped carriage, drawn by some creatures, which weren’t anything I had seen in my life. They had the body of a horse but very large wings attached to it. In fact the carriage came flying through the air on these “flying horses” and landed near us.
The person driving or flying the carriage stepped out and opened the door for the person inside to alight from it. The person who came out of the carriage could be a bishop, I suppose but from some other world. The whole of his body was emitting a strange white light. Father Chris welcomed him with utmost joviality and warmth. He was not deterred by the strange aura surrounding the bishop. In fact he acted as if it was nothing out of ordinary.
“Your Excellency, how kind of you to visit us in our humble abode,” gushed father Chris. “Please come inside, it’s too cold to stand out and chat.” He then instructed the coachman to take his flying horses to the side where a large barn stood. The bishop and father went inside and I followed them. I was wondering who this mysterious bishop was. Was he from some magical place or was I too tired and was imagining things?
When I entered the chapel behind them, the sight which met my eyes was so unusual that …
And finally, my very addition to the very long story:
… I let ought an audible gasp.
“Hey buddy, are you okay?” I heard a voice say.
“Father Chris?” I asked, “Is that you?”
“No, I’m not your father, kid,” the voice said.
I opened my eyes and looked around. I was still sitting on the Number 3 bus and the driver was talking to me. “What’s going on?” I asked him.
“You we’re having some sort of nightmare and you started screaming,” he said. “Listen kid, we’ve reached the end of the line. I’m heading back to the terminal on Main Street in Jasper. Do you want me to drop you off on my way back into town?”
“Yeah,” I said. “Can you drop me at Center Street?” As the bus headed back into Jasper, I saw the small chapel again. But there was no green light shining from within. Just the yellow glow of a standard light fixture. That’s when I realized that the whole thing — Father Chris, the green glow from the old computer, the flying carriage with the flying horses, and the strange bishop — was all just a dream. And now I was headed back home to be with my father and my mother for the holidays.
Even though it was not real, it was my dream encounter with Father Chris that made me see that I didn’t know everything and that what I really needed was be home with my family.
I’m not tagging anyone else. At almost 1,300 words, I think this story has gone on long enough.
So back to you, Teresa.