Honorable and Worthy ~ Part IV

Time is like an old garb people wear. It cloaks them and encumbers them. It’s a strange and mystic thing. It’s foolish to think that apart from the rotation of the heavenly spheres one would cease to age. So what then is time? Time is like an old garb people wear. No one can escape it. No one can evade its effects. And so it is with time we see the man crawl across the face of the earth in search of his destiny, in search of his purpose, in search of his fate.

Many years have passed since the woman had gifted him his gorgeous ring, his only living memory of her. He missed her deeply, and yet he had only seen and known her for the merest of moments. This did not assuage his resolve to find her, however. He was determined, his mind was set. But so the years – but so the heavy sleeves of the cumbersome garb of time began to wear on the poor man. He had consulted oracles and gods, demons and spirits, libraries and intellectuals, friars and bishops, poets and play-writes, but no one had seen the woman. Oh, there had been theories and conjectures, but no one seemed to understand. When he would describe her, he could tell they had never encountered her. Surely they would have been deeper moved if they had.

He couldn’t completely understand why he had not found her, for in the very deepest fiber of his soul he believed he had lived the remainder of his life in fulfillment of the ring’s commission. He truly believed he was “Honorable and Worthy.” So after scanning the wretched world over, the poor man made his pilgrimage back to the sacred spot where he first had seen the woman. However, by the time he had arrived in town he had grown so old and feeble he found it difficult to navigate the busy streets.

The city had greatly changed. It was early spring and foreboding storm clouds lurked on the bleak, overcast horizon. During the many years in the old man’s absence, the city officials had gone to great lengths to expand the town. Vast areas of the surrounding territory had been converted into bustling residential areas which thrived with population. However, so many years had passed, that even these new parts of town began to fall to ruin. The old man wandered the streets as a slight mist began to fall until he came to where he was sure had been the original location where he had met the woman.

The old man sat on a curb outside of an old, dilapidated post office building on a cold and drizzly day. He was in that part of town the city officials would rather have forgotten existed. Streets full of potholes, and gutters full of trash. Buildings all a moss grown and water stained from years of decay. The old man pulled his thin and dirty overcoat about his feeble shoulders to keep the wind somewhat at bay, and as his aged eyes peered for a moment at the gloomy grey sky, his eyelids winced occasionally from the spattering drops of moisture. And across his withered face one could spy the slightest of smirks as he looked down to his clenched palm. A sparkle danced in his eyes as he relaxed his palm, revealing a twinkling of gold and the brilliance of a tiny gem. He suddenly raised his hand heavenward as he slipped the expensive ring between his thumb and index and began to laugh aloud, for amid all of this desolate ruin, he knew he was royalty.

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