[For the Pagan Blog Project; two posts per letter every Friday. Join in here.]
Belief – conviction – faith, trust; to hold to be true; certainty of that which cannot be certain
If you create, you have an obligation. It is an automatic life debt. And all those life debts keep lining up and tinkering with time until you get yanked into another world entirely. You can only hold onto this life for so long.
Once there was a boy who wrote stories with abandon and thought nothing of them. He spun out words and worlds with no care. His interest waxed and waned and rarely would a story keep him in its grasp.
But after years of writing, he began to see a boy appear again and again in each story. He could not write him out, no matter how hard he tried, no matter what tactics he used. Whether the star or the side, the boy would appear.
He thought nothing of it for a long time.
He continued to spin his stories, and the boy continued to appear. The stories grew wild and withered. The stories danced and sang and fell to the grave. The thread throughout them all was the black-haired boy with eyes like the sea. And it came to pass that one day the writer woke to find the image of the boy hovering above him, only to blink it away.
He thought of it briefly but only to shove it away, unsettled.
The stories shrieked and flew and crashed. Each wanted life, each wanted to live, but just as they breathed air the writer discarded each. He wrote furiously, staying up for nights and days and weeks, raising and destroying worlds all in the hope to ride himself of the dark boy that plagued him.
And he woke more and more to the ghost of the boy hovering over him, suspended as if by wire or in ice.
He saw the boy when he walked to work. He saw him when he went for coffee. He saw him when he walked through the house, holding his arms to his chest and hoping, hoping, hoping that the boy would leave.
He wrote more worlds and erased more lives in the hopes he could erase the ocean blue boy, but it was no use. Each world he wrote contained the boy, and each world he destroyed left the boy standing strong.
And he saw the boy more and more, each day, every place he went.
He opened doors and watched as the boy bowed to him. He trimmed plants and listened as the boy commented on their color. He brushed his teeth and saw how the boy leaned against the bathroom counter and stretched every muscle.
He wrote until the day that no more words bled out of him.
It was that day, when it seemed the ocean boy was running through the house and making all manner of noise; it was that day, when it seemed the ocean boy was dancing atop the tables and swinging from the chandeliers; it was that day when no more words would come forth from his fingers that the writer fled to his room and stared hopelessly into the mirror and began to speak.
He spoke and gazed into the mirror and hoped the nightmare would be over, for he could not decide if he was frightened or full of longing, but either way it was pain and ache and he could not live with it. The ocean boy would be gone or the writer would be gone – it did not matter which. So he gazed into the mirror and pleaded and begged until eyes not his own blinked back at him. Eyes the color of the ocean before sunset, hair the color of jet, and a face like dawn.
And it was that day that the shade of the boy stepped forth, sticky from the mess that is inside of mirrors, and extended one pale skeleton hand.
“You believed in me,” was all he said.