Short Story: The Beautiful Prison

It was a beautiful prison.

Soft grass carpeted the ground, watered by a cool river that sparkled under the clear blue sky.

But it was still a prison.

The endless horizon was only an illusion. If any of them strayed too close to the invisible boundary, the air twisted into an insidious maze that invariably spit them back where they started.

In the beginning, they were determined to break out. But as the skinny stream grew into a wide river, the fierce fire in their hearts wore down to dying embers and then cold ash, leaving him as the last spark.

It didn’t matter if everyone else was happy with their pretty prison.What he wanted was out there. Even if he was the only one left, even though his shoes frayed and his feet swelled from all the walking, he kept looking.

The day he finally found the exit, he was alone. He stood there for a long time, knowing that he had found what he was looking for, but not remembering why.

Should he return to the familiar comfort behind him, or should he press on towards a goal he had already forgotten?

He thought about the idyllic space behind him, the crisp river that wound around the vibrant trees that shaded them from the warm sun. If even that hadn’t stopped him from his goal, then his goal must have been important.

He turned his back to the space he knew and stepped into the unknown.

~End~

 

Genre: fantasy

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