The Constant Following

~written two years ago~

for the faithful

for the weary

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It was the last time he was going to do this. He was through with people following his every move. He was done with everybody asking about this and that. He was tired of the judgmental glances, the tiring questions, and the quiet whispers. He was taking a different path. Oh, how far that he was willing to travel, away from them and away from everything. He was done.

He cut around the trees and walked his way down a path that he decided no one could find. Temporary security of being alone filled his mind. What was he doing? Why was he going this way?

——

She walked far behind him. She could sense that he did not want to be followed, but she had to know what he was going to do. She wanted to see what decision that he made. She wanted to see if it would be a wise one for her to make. She continued to follow his lead. The people behind her had tapered off. They usually always followed him, but today he kept changing paths. It was hard for any of them to really follow, but she stayed anyway. He had already helped her so much just by simply living his life well.

She walked through every bush that he did and changed to every path he took. It was confusing really, because he was usually so open about his life, so open about what he believed. He had always been such a leader, but today was so very different.

——

He could feel that someone was behind him, following each turn that he made. No, it couldn’t be true. He had lost them. He tried to suppress the feeling of being followed. No one was here. He was alone.He told this to himself over and over again.

He was making his own life decisions and no one was watching him. He had fooled everyone. Someone brushed against his shoulder. He startled as he turned sharply towards the young woman. His eyes held something close to discouragement as he realized that he had not covered his tracks well enough. It was just one woman, but still he had been followed. Would it ever end?

——

She could tell that she had upset him and she would have considered this further had she not felt the tug of her lightweight dress. She glanced down to find a little girl looking up at her. The young woman jumped back in shock. “How come that you went this way?” was the little girl’s question. The young woman stood speechless as children peeped out of every bush on the path.

She could see young girls slowly come out of hiding from behind the trees. Gazing at her, waiting for her next step, intent. Had they all been following her?

She turned to see the young man that she had followed. She was only to be surprised once more, because surrounding him were boys of all ages. How had these boys and girls followed this path without being seen or heard? How had these children and young teenagers managed to follow every turn without ever being noticed or heard?

——

The young man collapsed on the ground in defeat. He had thought this path took him somewhere quiet, somewhere abandoned. Instead, he found himself surrounded by countless people who had come from every tree and bush imaginable. How had this happened? He was so confused. H had fought so hard. He was trying to avoid this, the constant following.

And then he looked down and found these words engraved on a large stone:

“Everyone will follow and have a following of their own.”

When he  understood the meaning, he smiled to the group and led the way.

******

Previous Posts:

20 & Learning: It’s Not about my Messy Life

The Young Wife Journal: First Christmas as a WIFE

Short Story: The Other Shoes

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