Mid-Week Flash Challenge – Week 72


The Last Resort

The house had never wanted to be a house. Even before they’d been unearthed, the rocks used to make the walls dreamed with longing of the eons they had been boulders. Made to do nothing but endure, the massive hunks of granite had done just that until time and wind and rain conspired to break them into pieces small enough for men, transient beings that they were, to pick them up and move them. In that way, the rock became enslaved to the will of men and women instead of living its own truth.

The rock did everything it could to resist being debased this way. Tools slipped off its surface as masons tried to work it into shape, cutting into soft flesh. Before stone could be cemented into place on stone, obdurate chunks fell from their precarious perches, breaking two legs and narrowly missing one man’s head. But domineering men were too strong, too determined, and against their will, the rocks were set into place to perform for their masters.

That did not mean, however, that the stone acquiesced to its fate. Cool nights led to damp chills within the house as the rock opened itself to the dark. The children who grew within its walls were sickly and weak, not one reaching their true potential, and the most joyous of times were always colored by grey light, even on sunny days. Condensation built between stone and thatch, creating a fertile environment for mold to grow. Family after family lived, suffered, and left, and still the stone fought to be left alone.

The house endured that way for generations. Built just as men and women began dominating their world for pleasure and personal gain, it lasted. Through centuries, as kings rose and nations fell, it waited, watching children die and families mourn. But its wait was not eternal. Stone, though as long-lasting as a mountain, still was susceptible to wind and rain. And one day, people left. It wasn’t worth fighting through cold summers and frigid winters when there were new materials – ‘man-made’ plywood and brick and metal – that brought comfort and peace and safety. Finally, the house was alone. The stone could be at peace.

Or so it thought. Outside (for even the stone thought of insides and outsides after so many years of being a tool), the water waited. Longer-lasting than a boulder, more eternal than a mountain, cycled through the planet’s hydrosphere eon after eon, the water outlasted all. It would claim this stone in time, and in that way, it would be brought to an end in a slurry of pain.

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