A Questionable Destiny

I saw the little boy run and play in the backyard.

He led honorable men, men who wielded swords and shed blood on the battlefield. He charged forward with his sword held up high, personifying the charge of a noble Samurai warrior. He paused in mid stride, as if to reconsider his destiny.

The little boy had turned the corner of time and, now older, explored the abyss of the oceans and seas, the darkness and brutality of humanity, and the mystery and curiosity of the Universe. He emerged moments later, looking older and beaten, wearing the sunken, drawn face of a weary-eyed warrior. He dropped down onto his knees, wiping away dirt and tears from his face with soiled sleeves, his stomach wrenching over why he had survived while his band of brothers had perished in battle.

I squinted and looked for the little boy.

The grown man built starships for battle. His son had followed the warrior’s path, soon to board the flagship of his father’s creation. Father and son sat together, speaking to each other with neither words nor expressions to convey the fate that lay ahead.

The bay doors opened. His lungs filled with the sigh of the Universe. The starfield before his eyes had stunned him, then they came, through an opening in space-time, a flotilla of warships converging on their position. One-thousand brothers sang their battle hymns, anticipating one of their own will make the ultimate sacrifice. He witnessed all his lives play out before him as his fighter jettisoned down the launch tube. Focused, centered, his strength peaked—certainty opposing eternity—he had envisioned all hostiles as one point in time.

The massive detonation and abrupt flash dissipated, illuminating a glittering debris field in its wake. The warriors chanted, lowering their heads in mourning to honor their fallen brother who waits to rejoin them in a distant timeline.

The old man, lying motionless and imprisoned by his bed, withering away in an empty human shell, gazed into his son’s eyes. The old man and his son spoke to each other without uttering a single word. An evil, vicious act robbed the son of taking his father out for walks in the park, helping him prepare meals, or spending a quiet day fishing from a river bank—the simple things a good son does for his father.

I paused and stared at the frail, old man. I wiped away the tears from my eyes then saw the little boy, running around the backyard, leading a fearless charge into battle, but he halted his forward momentum, as if he questioned his destiny.


THE END

2 comments

  1. Alexandra says:

    Fantastic imagery, and so heartfelt and emotive. You capture both the horror and brutality of war and give us pathos and hope at the same time. Nicely done.

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