The Old Barn

A Story Snippet

They strolled along the faint dirt path, absorbed in their surroundings, not overly minding the abundance of large weeds and twisted roots that impeded their progress. Charles pushed back a low branch in their way, and gave a whistle of surprise. Gathering around, everyone paused and gazed at an old barn in a small clearing. The barn was apparently ancient, with the forest closing it in tightly, but it still stood strong. Green and soft, moss covered a sagging door, and ivy spilled out of the open loft. A small pine grew beside the old, worn back door and gentle light streamed down, filtered by the foliage above. Slowly Charles and his companions advanced, watching the stillness. Listening to the prevailing silence, they quietly walked into the barn. The forest had gently brushed the inside, but had left much untouched. Thus, it appeared much younger inside, than out. The wood was sturdy and everything that a wealthy farmer would need was in its place in good repair. Hay intermingled with forest growth in the loft, and there was stale water in the water troughs. At last, as they were exiting through the large front door Rebecca broke the silence. "Strange," she wondered aloud.

The other four nodded solemnly in agreement. Glancing to the side, Mirabel noticed a faint road which went straight between two parallel lines of tall, thick apple trees which began to tug faintly at her memory. Gathering her crutches under her arms she went toward them. As she did, her mind began to wander and she tried to lift the misty curtain that seemed to cover her forgotten past. It lifted slightly, allowing the crippled girl to just catch the light of laughter and joy before it fell again. Desperately Mirabel reached out once more, and the curtain obscuring her memory let the clash of steel, yells and the single, harsh cry of, "Harlock!" to pass through to her before falling back in place, not to be moved again. Exhausted, Mirabel laid her forehead on the trunk of one of the apple trees. She was brought back to the present reality by the gentle touch of Charles' hand on her shoulder. "Mirabel, are you ok?" he asked with concern.

"I…I don't know." She answered weakly. Turning slowly to the rest of her worried friends she spoke, her voice echoing her confused mind, "I don't understand, but somehow I know this place holds the key to my past."