Around the Lake

Two friends were walking by the pond. They had made this trek before as young men, conversing as they completed their circuit, but the day was waning as they went, their youths were long ago spent, and a darkness was between them which neither man could pronounce. It was they spoke without speaking in that slow walk around the pond. Their reflections below shimmered over the troubled water. Now and then one would lift his head, his mouth opening, but he dared not utter it. They each feigned surprise when they found each other at the pond, though they each came for the reason of finding the other there. They had never taken this walk so quietly before, nor had their conversations ever been so loud to them as that silence.

When the circle was complete, and the sky once more belonged to the night, they parted. No more in this life would they walk together by the pond. They later died, old men, never reuniting, but it is said of that pond that their reflections are still there, going round and round. Sometimes their voices are heard speaking as they had been known to speak, their old manner of first shouting at each other and then breaking into laughter. It is said that if you listen you may hear them discussing politics, and that they speak, not of their own times, but of ours. The spirits are still fiercely divided, but they never part, only circle round and round that lake, picking apart the latest scandals or policies. And it is said that they are happy.

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