Tuesday, 8 September 2015

Finding a rock

When you find a rock, you don’t want to find it by stumbling over it. And you don’t want to fall. And you certainly don’t want to find out it’s bigger by falling on more of that rock. But you don’t always get what you want.
Aquila walked through the forest. She liked doing that, and two of her shapes were quite connected to that habit. This time, though, she wasn’t a fox or eagle. She was just herself, and out for a walk. It wasn’t winter, yet, but a lot of leaves had already fallen. Having left the path, she got to walk more than ankle-deep through leaves, and she loved it.
That is, until she found a rock. She found it by stumbling over it, and falling. And she found out it’s bigger than she first thought by falling on more of it.
She would’ve sworn, but the impact had knocked the breath out of her. Instead she just inhaled with a hiss and held still for a bit longer. Then she wriggled her toes. Then her fingers. After concluding that she was still in one piece, she slowly got up to see what she fell over.
It didn’t look like a rock. Mainly because it wore clothes. She had fallen over a boot, apparently, and was now sitting on a leg. But it had felt as hard as rock. She frowned and slowly got up. If she had just fallen on a body, she would not be happy. Not at all. Right, if that was a leg – she took two steps – then the head should be about here. Did she really want to check, though? Well, there was no helping it. If it was in fact a body, she’d have to call the police. She ducked and started brushing through the leaves until she found what she assumed was the head. It was cold. Great. Trying to touch it as little as possible, she brushed the leaves off. And was relieved. It was in fact stone. A quite detailed statue, but still just stone.
But that left the question of who dressed up a statue and then left it in the middle of the woods. The clothes seemed fine, it couldn’t have been there for long. Or could it?
Brushing off more leaves, she really doubted it had been there for more than a day or two. It was fascinating, though, being all dressed up like a person. How they had managed that puzzled her. Everyone who ever tried putting clothes on a doll would know: Dressing up something stiff isn’t easy. Maybe they sewed them shut on the back.
Being bent over, head really close to the ground and trying to see the back of an arm, it took Aquila surprisingly long to realise the statue had moved. By the time it sat up, though, she had already jumped back. She turned, jumped, changed shape mid-jump and an eagle flew away as fast as its wings would carry it.
When statues come to life, it’s best to just run.

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