the dance of the ink riddled fingers

A man called Endurance

Posted in handfuls of ambition, thought spills by enisea on 21/06/2011

Sword down, both hands on hilt and body weight piercing the dirt via it.
Aching arms, heavy eyes, small relief. 
There, sun setting, shadow rising, opposition approaching.
“God”, she breathed with desperation… or disgust, “make it stop.”

 .

Straightened posture, torso forward, tight-lipped. This one was about a seven minute walk from her.  She could afford to close her eyes for six minutes… as long as she kept herself upright, this one wouldn’t know she was exhausted having faced three more prior.  Ordinarily she would have indulged in what she deemed was a deserved break after each practice, the moment the sun flared midday, practice was over.  This was different. The pressure of reality was unrelenting and unkind.  Six minutes is not enough time to rest between fights.  I can’t even see life ten minutes ahead of the present.  Six minutes will have to do. It will have to do. 

Turning to another, (there were a few within her vicinity – though millions spread over the field), she sighed between heavily heaved wheezes, “I’m tired. I’m really tired.  I don’t remember being so exhausted, I’ve never been pushed this far, I’m not used to going on so little rest.”
A disbelieving smirk crossed the face of him being addressed. “Well then, you’ve been living a pretty uneventful life to this point, I’d wager.  How many this run?”
“Three, with really short intervals between each! Three, five and six minute rests.  It’s really tough.”
“Ahh, you’re new here.  But welcome anyhow.  Getting drafted is one of the best things to happen in life.  Don’t believe me? About as many as you see fighting here, there are doubled the population of those who don’t even know what it means to work up a sweat… and though they get more sleep in two nights than you get in a week here, you’d rather be here than have nothing to hold a sword to.”
“But I’ve never done so much with so little rest.”
“You’ll be fine.”
“I really don’t know that I will be.”
“We’ve all had our tough First Ten,it gets easier – later, you’ll be able to keep two at bay with two minute rests for a day.”
“No sympathy?”
“No sympathy.”
“I didn’t think so.”

“These you face?  They go down easily once you understand weakness and efficiency, it’s all about reading each challenge.  They aren’t your toughest battle, the hardest battle is keeping your eyes from closing and your hands on that hilt.  You will never lose a fight as long as you try to, but you will lose when you lose consciousness to it.”

“Who are you?”
“Endurance.”
“Of course.”

“You’re young.  You couldn’t even comprehend the most honest definition of difficult.  But you will.  You will if you want to save every deprived, disadvantaged and poverty stricken child in the world.  You will if you want ‘just’ to save one. Currently, you’re struggling just to save yourself.”

Looking up, five minutes had elapsed and Number Four looked straight at me.

“Brilliant.”

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