Written for 3WW – erode, heart, observe
Lightning was almost seventy when he walked out of Soroton and into the Northern Woods followed by a dozen men and women. There are many accounts of that day, all of them differing, and it was a momentous occasion in that it was neither preceded nor concluded by violence, a feat in those days to say the least. That year the last of the Believer refugees had been relocated to Segher, a mistake, according to Lightning. For the entire seven years of the migration, he’d protested against the move, tried in vain to warn the people against Scientist treachery, but with so much hope for a better life free to live and believe, his cries went unheard by most.
“You’ll remember what I prophesied,” he said to the remaining Believers, the few who did remain here on Earth. “You’ll wish you had heeded my warning.” The years that followed exceeded his expectations for Scientist duplicity. Those on Segher likely would have preferred death to what eventually awaited them on the golden terra that hovered in the western sky.
When Lightning left, the Believer cause eroded into a pitiful shadow of its previous strength. We became as weak in will as we were in numbers, bemoaning our poor conditions behind closed doors, sending our hungry children to throw rocks at Scientist cars when they deigned to pass through our crumbling neighborhood streets as our strongest show of defiance. As a people, we don’t even remember what we truly stand for, the very heart of our cause. This is what Lightning represented, a flag bearer to guide the way, and yet few except me can even remember who he was.
Lightning, in his impatience, gave up hope and divorced himself from both the Believers with their complacency and gullibility, and the Scientists for their treachery. He called himself and his little band of outsiders Midlings, those who stand in the center, those who need no one and want no one. How wrong he was.
If Lightning was alive today, I’d say to him, “Observe your descendents. You divided them by force, and yet something greater than you brings them back together.”