Prelude to the muse:
Under the Water's Surface, Heartbreak; The War That Follows
On second inspection the boy saw that the weapons were made of plastic and enamel. He noticed to his delight that the kit also contained a small female figure whose face seemed to be saying, “I’m in trouble here." Clancy understood with his limited ability to read faces, he could be dead wrong and he wondered if he was in trouble, or her. A hundred fiery winged horses came as an adjacent set along with other more domesticated animals. He had to have it, but he knew it would take a spell and a hammer to get his father to purchase it for him. So he did what any smart kid would do; he approached his mom. He knew from experience his mother could not resist a crocodile tear of want in her son’s brown eyes. Where his father would be a losing fight of wits, from his maternal half he could eke out an emotional win.
Clancy snowed his mother and they both traversed downtown toward the children's boutique. They neared a black haired street child spinning in circles allowing his shirt to flutter. The boy child didn’t seem to mind the homelessness as much as the boredom of this particular street corner. With a try at joie de vive, he played at Arthurian legends. When he eyed the boy pushing his mother along on an acquisition mission he saw an opportunity.
He stepped in the way of the eager Clancy, bowing low,
“Caleb; may I be of some assistance?”
The mere elder complied, with more hurriedness than want. They both ran toward the door held open by his mom, the youngest meeting her woman’s purse at full speed knocking her aside.
Clancy excused him with, “He is my assistant for everything.”
A sarcastic, too many children to save, was written all over his mother’s face, but the words "too cute" came out of her mouth. Her son’s panache of befriending odd boys would confirm her of his particular persuasion, if he were not so young himself. The black haired boy loosed the red silk scarf from his neck revealing it as a woman’s slip, grabbing the spaghetti straps he pulled it over his head creating a cape. The breeze accommodated and his pose-of-ages finished the devastating effect. Having composed himself, Caleb and the others made an entrance.
Clancy had an eye for the dramatic, as his head was so full of emotion that got in the way of wisdom. He discovered the faux metal armor hanging beside the weapons he came to admire. Caleb picked up a shapeless piece of chain maille as though he had left it by mistake. He took it and belted it into a vest around him. Clancy squealed and pointed to the dragon wings painted onto the backside of the short tunic. Their excitement met and a quest developed between them. They did not know that a dangerous journey waited, one that they didn’t need to plan. Clancy’s mother, Claudia, stood aside wondering what mountain they were planning on scaling. She thought to prepare them for the foes they would meet, real or no, but decided everyone needs to make their own mistakes. Besides, it was time to head on.
After the set-deluxe had beed purchased and strapped to his back, Clancy along with Caleb meandered downtown though the city, imagining it to be a dangerous rock forest. Everyone they saw became a character in the theater of life, every something a prop, every corner a challenge. The bike racks where their loyal horses. They saluted every elderly person, and got a wink in return as though the elder understood the language of these warriors. They would watch the boys pass, lingering on memories unrealized.
The boys easily swapped roles becoming the injun or the chief.
“Let’s get out of the way of this story for awhile and see what happens by itself,” Caleb suggested. He motioned for Clancy to sit down on the curb next to him and he pulled out a piece of chalk, drew a time-line boundary, then held it up in the air,
“Well, if sometimes I can’t draw fast enough, I can always eat it.”
“With wine? Or plain grape juice.”
They became impatient with the waiting.
“Double yuck! Let’s move off this street, it’s getting too hot.”
“Hey, I think I hear a strange voices and my mom whistling for me.”
“If there is a battle going on in there, we best investigate.”
Claudia had a radio talk show argument turned way too loud, and when they entered it seemed as though a courtroom brawl was going on. She looked at the two boys, fresh from a voyage with a hint of homesick for dinner.
They took the time to set up a miniature theater with major conflict and peril on the travertine den floor, discovering the players as they set them into action. Before long, Clancy and Calebs’ stomachs growled and they eagerly sat for victuals and regaled Claudia of their day, which grew bigger as the plates grew empty. Clancy knew the hour’s fortune was coming to an end soon.
Claudia invited the little rustic to stay,
“That is, if no one will be worrying about you.”
The boys settled down, dreaming of alternative days of traveling troubadours singing and living the rock-n-roll lifestyle. And, they never once mentioned the inappropriateness of it all to Claudia. Only the wind whispered back to each of them finishing the story they could not imagine.
This was a peaceful bliss, for tomorrow would be an altogether different kind of day…
(unedited - unfinished)