Thistle

Nick has moved forward. When he turned back for a moment to glance at Iris and her house he saw her waving to him with tears in her eyes. Exactly as he wanted, she stood there, waving. Of course, – she is Iris, she can really make us see the things in our head… 

There’s no more Iris, no more smell of fried potatoes.

— I will miss you, – Nick told her before leaving.

— Me too, little boy, – Iris answered.

— Will we meet again?

— Every time you open your eyes I’ll be there!..

— Promise?

— Of course!

— I’ll wake up and smile to you then…

Iris smiled.

Nick had to move on. He had to find Oliver, Olivia and he had to find the way back to Daddy. Behind were the lilies, the river, Iris. He moved further and deeper into the trees.

— Ah, – he cries as he feels sharp pain in his leg all of a sudden. As he looks, he sees the skin torn above the knee and blood emerging.

It’s a thistle. Huge one, – the height of him, almost. He didn’t notice it and tore leg on its leaf.

Then came the sound that the boy initially thought was a thunder, but the sky was too clear… Then he thought it was an earthquake, as the ground started to vibrate. He stood next to the huge thistle in front of him, unsure and scared…

What happened next was the matter of one second, but it all unleashed as if in slow motion in front of the boy.

Huge rock, off the mountain, the size of an enormous truck, rolling down, with the speed so fast, strength so huge, noise so loud… In a fraction of a second it was then in front of Nick. In another fraction the huge trees in front of Nick were gone… All gone – trees, bushes, smaller rocks… All flat terrain unleashed as the rock swiped as a meteorite in front of him. A huge empty flat stripe of a trail of it now lay there, in front of Nick.

Gone was the huge thistle. Should it not struck him a moment ago, the boy would be under the rock as well probably.

Nick looked at the cut leg, then ahead of him. Then up, to the right side of him, to the hill that the huge rock came down from. The stripe of flat land was starting somewhere up there and was going downhill to where the rock rolled.

The noise was gone, the vibrations too, as if nothing happened.

Nick noticed something purple in the flat stripe in front of him. He recognized the flattened flower of the thistle.

— Thank you… – he mumbled.