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the prose: weirdo

The Land of Lost Things--Part Two

July 17, 2019


    Ann told me stories. Not the kind in books. No, one starts to get tired of the stories that are contained in the pages of a book. She came up with stories. And she told them to me, bursting with enthusiasm as she flailed her arms around and waddled like a duck, trying to make me understand.
    "Then!" she told me, "It was gone!"
    "What?! How…?"
    "I don't know."
    "You have to know? It's your story."
    She plopped herself down on my air mattress. I cringed, scared that it would burst.
    "Sometimes," she sighed, "You don't know what happens in the end. Stories don't always finish. The story teller loses grasp of what the story was supposed to lead up to. The endings gets…"
    "Lost?" I sat down next to her.
    "Yeah," she said, looking up at me and cracking a smile, "Lost."
    "Well, we can find them here then. All lost things come here."
    "I don't think that's how it works. Some things are different. Spoken things get lost, but it doesn't matter because it's like they were never there. They can't be seen. They can only be heard."
    Heard? My thoughts were whizzing around. There was a place. A place I had discovered in the Land of Lost Things many years ago. A cave. A cave that produced voices. Well, I guess it didn't produce voices. It took lost voices, and maybe lost thoughts too, and gathered them in one place. Then, the words echo throughout, creating an almost harmonic sound. Maybe, I thought, the untold end of stories live in there too! That make sense!
    "So," I told Ann, "You don't know the ending. But, you did, right?"
    "That's great!" I hopped up, "Let's go!"
    I landed with feet spread wide and my fists on my shoulders. Instead of standing up, Ann looked at me, then began giggling. Like, a really high pitched and unnecessary giggle.
    "What?" I cocked my head to the side.
    "You look like Peter Pan. That's what!"
    I smiled: "Yeah, Peter Pan is my favorite book."
    "I'll let you figure it out on the way there."
    "On the way where?"
    "You'll see."
    I extended my arm toward her. She looked around at my vast collection of lost things. At the peeling wood which made my pitiful tree house. At me.
    "I don't know…" she started, "I feel pretty cozy here. Wouldn't it be better to stay?"
    "It's not like there's anything dangerous about the outside."
    "Lions? Tigers? Jaguars?"
    "It's sort of hard to lose any of those."
    She sighed. That's something that I about her in the few hours we'd already spent together She sighed quite a lot. All the stories I had read that contained children presented them as lively and happy creatures. There was something different about her. Or, maybe, the stories presented children wrong. Maybe this is how they really are?
    "If you're going, I might as well," she said, "It doesn't make much sense to stay here on my own. I'd get lonely."
    She clasped my hand. And, the feeling was once again present. The feeling from before, when I touched her hand for the first time. It was…electrifying. I looked at her, and she looked absolutely shocked.
    "This…isn't normal?" I asked.
    "No," she said, as if it were obvious, "It's spooky! How could you think that it's normal?"
    I shrugged: "Well, I haven't touched a human since… since… well, I don't remember."
    She blinked, as if she didn't quite understand. That made sense. She had lived among humans her whole life. She was accustomed to their ways. And, me? I was human, but didn't know how to act like such. Humanity was a foreign concept. I got ideas, of course, from the things I gathered and stored. But, I hadn't truly known until I met Ann.
    "Let go, will you?"
    I looked down to see that my hand was still grasping hers, the thunder like feeling traveling from my hand to my arm. I released her, and looked at my hand. Nothing looked unusual.
    "Maybe it's static?" I suggested.
    She shook her head. "You're older than me. Yet, you don't know much. That's not how static works."
    I shrugged my shoulders.
    "It's just weird," she concluded.
    "You think that's weird. Boy, have I got something to show you. Wanna hear some stories?"

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