Trudging in the soft semi-dry sand on the lake shore was the down-cast figure of Krow as lifeless as the deserted beach. His hand deep in his pocket, the chilly wind blew the straw of hair on his head into his face, he did nothing to clear it of the locks in fact he seemed not to notice anything around him not even himself.
Trailing behind him could be seen the footprints he’d made and each of them looked like they had a story of their own to tell, they were made by the weight of his body, they’d sank under the weight of his sorrow, the earth and the sand had parted to let him deposit some of his misery as he walked on- those were the scars of his life all coming undone piece by soft piece.
He looked at the meandering grass that grew on blindly towards the water but could hardly make it due to the barren sand, he pitied the shrivelling grass. He pulled his jacket closer and trudged slowly on. The wind continued mourning around him his face down, his chin touching his collarbones Krow plodded on to nowhere.
A tear crawled slowly unnoticed from the corner of his left eye, made a thin trail, stopped, hesitated, built up and succumbed to gravity and at the same time he stopped his eyes focusing on the ground below, the tear finally hit the ground unearthing some thing slightly which he saw. He stooped and picked up the rusty piece of metal, blew away the sand and examined it, it was a tiny ancient necklace locket. He tried prying it open but the rust had spoilt its hinges and sort of glued it together such that it was impossible to open so he held it in the fist of his hand and moved on.
This was not the first time that Krow had come to the lake shore, he spent most of his days walking the length of the beach in a sombre mood and far at the end of this beach stood a lonely spot- a flat square concrete stone block just outside the water which had lapped at it through the ages and changes in tide giving it a jagged and rugged look. It was Krow’s favourite spot. He’d step on to it, stand rigidly still and gaze into the horizon for hours on end. Today wasn’t an exception only this time he had something else to stare at.
He laid out his palm and stood on the Watchtower as he called the stone wondering at the locket whether it had a story and what its story was, at the same time figuring out the best way to open it curious at what he’d find inside of it. He tried to pry it open but failed again.
He put it in his pocket and watched the sun set. Every day he came to the same spot with the locket in his pocket, he would extract it, look hard and then he started talking to it ‘ you know, i-I don’t know why I keep you, you piece a crap….’ ‘Whom did you belong to? I wonder…’ ‘Why did you end up here on the lonely beach …’ ‘why won’t you open damn it!’
He’d joke, be serious, rant and rage at the locket and it patiently listened to him and for a long time Krow grew to like the locket more and more, his curiosity grew by bounds and one time he got so mad he hit the locket on the rock but still it would not open. He’d named it ‘tears’ because it had been discovered by his tear and for a long time this continued for Mr. Krow and his locket.
The rust had slowly started to wear off and below it shone gold like in the sunset but Krow hardly noticed the change much, he was only glad he had a friend to share his loneliness with and pine into and slowly the locket transformed into the most beautiful gem ever beheld and finally Krow gradually noticed and became fascinated with the change.
The day the last chip of rust fell off was an awesome day. Krow had gone to the watchtower as usual and sat down cross-legged on the stone momentarily drowning in the suns rays enjoying the lazy feeling it brought until it started to lose its warmth as it set then he removed the locket from its hiding place, the last chip of rust caught on the fabric of the cloth inside yanking almost free and thus loosened as he pulled the locket out of the pocket. Once outside it totally came off the locket and fell into the calm waters of the lake. As Krow looked at the locket he had the oddest feeling of peace and calm, he closed his eyes holding the locket between his index finger and the thumb.
The feeling was so blissfully intense it distracted him and he did not notice the locket opening so that when he opened his eyes an amazing sight lay before him. He stared at it transfixed and could not move, every thing else seemed to fade away and it was just him and the locket, it was strangely familiar and so beautiful.
In the locket he beheld an image and that image was smiling the happiest smile he’d ever seen, so genuinely happy it seemed then it hit him…
There was nothing in the locket except a tiny mirror and in the mirror what he saw wasn’t just an image, it was a reflection of his face and it was he who was smiling. The realisation seemed to knock the senses out of his body taking his breath away, his hands went numb and he dropped the locket into the water, he had a few seconds glance at it before it was swallowed by the wave disappearing forever but he did not care.
Something inside of him had snapped at that moment it was like he was nolonger a prisoner of something, he’d been released, he was free at last, free from everything, tears had brought him freedom and he wanted to shout, dance and jump with joy, he felt like he could do anything and that is exactly what he did, he let out a whoop of joy, ran on the beach hardly leaving any prints in his wake, he did cartwheels, he spun around in circles his hands spread out, his head tilted up smiling so greatly he laughed like never before, shouted his voice hoarse, kicked the sand, tripped and fell down rolled in the sand got up and ran some more basically going wild with joy and as he trudged and disappeared into the horizon his figure looked so full of life his quest was no more at last he’d found the greatest quest of all, at last he was happy…