Thursday, February 26, 2015

The Siege of the White Mountain, Vol. 3: Due to the Dead--Part 14

Pierre sat in the tent, gobbling down his neighbor's bread.  While normally, he would have felt quite guilty about this, the fact was his neighbor was quite dead, or so close to it, as not to count.  And so he was eating a bit more bread, and a bit more soup, all in this most glorious of places, the warm tent he was now sitting in.

He loved this tent.  He loved it with an all-consuming love.  There was no finer place to be, nor no finer place that he had ever been.  It was warm.  And there was food in it.  And it was warm.  He gulped down another mouthful when a hand patted him familiarly. 

"Well, well, well," said the old-timer with a cheerful smile.  "Fancy meeting you here."

Pierre regarded him for a long moment.  "Hello," he said.  "Hello again.  It is nice to see you again." He raised what remained of his neighbor's bread.  "Do you want some bread?"  He smiled at the old man, who smiled back for a long time, then looked away, and rubbed his eyes. 

"No, no," said the old man.  "I'm fine."  He pulled something out of his pocket.  "Perhaps you'd like a little fruit, hmm?"  He held something in his hand.  "Look.  A bit of fruit.  A dried apple, actually."

Pierre stared at it for a moment, then his hand darted forward, and grabbed it.  He began to crunch it eagerly.  "Where have you been?" he asked.

"Around," said the old-timer.  He looked around.  "I plan on going... around somewhere else soon."  He smiled at the young man.  "Perhaps you'd like to come with me, hmmm?"

Pierre blinked.  "But then I'd have to leave the tent."

The old-timer watched him for a second, then smiled, and waved.  "Very well then.  See you... eventually."

Pierre waved as the old man walked away. As the old-timer left, he whistled that familiar tune. 

It seemed to Pierre it was the prettiest thing he'd ever heard.

He forgot about it in an hour.

1 comment: