The rising sun turned the mist that covered the landscape below me into a giant field candy floss. When I had climbed the hill it had been dark but clear, the mists had almost risen with the sun – as if the force of life in those first rays had drawn it forth from the land itself.
For now I sat on the hill soaking up the splendour that was laid before me. The faintest purple spots seemingly dancing before in eyes from the fierceness of the sun’s first light as it played upon my retinas.
I looked down the path that I had ascended earlier, it was now pretty much obscured in pillows of mist. Just where the mists seemed to start I could make out a pair of old Elm trees close beside the path, almost unnoticed as I walk up the hill amongst the rest of the life, but now they were like majestic guardians of some ethereal world, as they stood there, the last remaining visable symbols of the world I had left.
I am not sure how long I sat and watched the sun, but I eventually sensed that the day and my worked awaited me. As I started to descend the mists seemed now to be thicker; in fact, increasingly so as I approached them, I could barely make out the pair of elms now. The light cotton candy feel had morphed to a heavy grey. This was real fog; some old Victorian London pea soup out a Sherlock Holmes story.
I could make out the path at my feet but little beyond – for my route, I seemed to be following my intuition and memory more than any visual clues.
There was tangible stillness. It felt like I could reach out and break a piece off to take home. And the silence, it was silence so devoid of sound that you could actually hear it. The shadows loomed around me increasingly unfamiliar. Walls, trees, the odd building outline, all rendered alien in that space. Everything I recalled was there but yet it was not. It was no more than a sketched outline of the world I had passed though earlier. Figments of somebody else’s dream.
As I walked on the fog continued to thicken until even the feint shadows had receded. I started to sense a presence. A presence that almost surrounded me. It was as if the fog itself was alive. Strangely it was a benign life; welcoming and embracing.
And then it was breathing.
Wisps of fog and mist rising and falling around like the ribs of some giant sleeping safari attraction.
In front of me the mists were coalescing; gathering themselves. Forming, yes forming, or should I say birthing. An eye. I am sure it was eye.
As I stared at it, it appeared to sharpen its form, it even seemed to gain colour, an olive green reptilian eye, hanging there before me in the mist.
I jumped out of skin. What do you when what you had assumed imagination or trick of the light is suddenly manifest and animated?
The colour in that eye strengthened slightly with every breath in the fog and then diminished with what would be an exhale. Throughout it was focused on me.
“Do not fear little one, I mean you no ill; in fact I have been waiting to meet with you.”
“I am Ratanen welcome to the world of my kind”, the eye glistening as the mists spoke to me. I could not be sure if that eye remained throughout disembodied, for it’s pupil remained the absolute focus of my attention; in my memories now I seem to recall some vast body around. A vast body which seemed to curl completely around where I stood.
It continued: “This fog is chaos. It is the chaos that exists between the end and the beginning. It is where the future is conceived and it is where the past expires. Everything you can dream of exists in this place, but it is the no more than an ethereal idea of an existence, it is a seed, mere glimmers of potential that might or might not manifest.”
“Dream something here and the lands upon which your type lives shall bare its witness”
“This is your place now, in the times ahead you will meet others here, other travellers like yourself. You will be here for them. Calm them; awaken them; guide them.”
“And the others that find their way to this place, their place is to be beside you, as your place is to be beside us, now you are one of us.”
The hiss in that final S hung in the damp air. The fog disappeared from everywhere in that moment and with the sound still resonating in my head I found myself back in the town where I had started.
There had been no discussion, no time to question, just the message.
As I stood blinking in the sun I quickly realised the need to keep from obstructing those now about me, going about their morning business. I was back to that town’s main street.
In a dark shop window beside me I thought for one second that I made out the reflection of a large green reptilian eye hovering over an offer of 50% reductions.
I turned but it was not there, yet I was being watched over. And I still am. And I always have been.
© The Mindful Horse
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