Edweird had heard of this place as he crossed out of the green, lush forest and into the mountains of snow and bitter winds. Not only did it come like a whisper from the clouds, but the indigenous peoples of cerise, flaxen, and sepia spoke loudly of it.
Down into the valley, he stumbled, exhausted by this drive to find this place they called “Same,” or was it “Sane?” By the time he reached the desert’s edge, the name no longer mattered.
It was the destination, not the journey, that spurred Edweird forward.
The rocky landscape gave way to endless vistas of bright titian and heliotrope bruisings. It became difficult for Edweird to recognize the sky from the earth, and many times it caused him to stumble and fall. Still, he found the will to regain his footing and step forward and forward again.
Parched, tongue sticking to the roof of his mouth, Edweird fell victim again and again to the taste of the gritted soil of an ancient mirage. He cried foul each time and threatened to surrender to the elements but never found the right place.
Hands and knees shredded, and his mind numbed to the ever-presence of fatigue and loneliness, Edweird came to a long, high wall. Slowly, he stood, using the smooth stones as leverage to find his balance.
Confusion set in, and he found it hard to decide which direction he should go. It was too high and smooth to go over, and he could not see the end of this structure to either side of himself.
Edweird felt stuck.
Finally, a gust of hot air forced him to his right, and he followed the wall for days and nights. Upon his third turn, for the wall was circular and not straight, he discovered a crack between the rocks.
Though his eyesight was weak, he could see people moving, passing by the narrow opening. Edweird pressed himself into the gash, and though frightened of tight spaces, forced his withered body through to the other side.
Inside the walls, Edweird watched as the forms he’d seen from the outside, turn to look at him. Many did not stop to recognize this busted and battered man as he dropped to his knees in surrender.
“We’ve been expecting you,” a calm voice stated.
Edweird looked up and saw the form of a man standing with a blinding sun obscuring his face.
“Come,” the man said. “Let us get you water and crackers.”
Edweird stumbled to his feet and followed obediently. All around himself, he saw people shrieking, crying, dancing, laughing wildly, talking and mumbling, singing, and doing other strange things that only those who have lost their minds would do.
After a meal of saltines and cool water, the man said, “Welcome to…”
Edweird could not make out the name. Did he say, “Same” or “Sane?” Though the problem had plagued Edward before this, he was safe now and therefore no longer concerned himself with such details.
After resting for three days and feeling stronger in body and mind, Edweird decided he must be moving on. He needed to find his way back to his place of beginning.
He returned to that part of the wall through which he had entered, only to find the slot was absent. For three days, he searched, and for three days, he found the same thing, solid stone, polished smooth, but no escape.
On the fourth day, he was approached by the man with the sun in his face, once again.
“The crease you seek will not return until your soul heals,” the man said.
Edweird leaned back against the wall and slipped to the ground, screaming and crying at his plight. The idea of being trapped was too much, and Edweird cracked with madness.
And though it would pass in the blink of an eye, seventeen years later, the crack in the wall would open, but by this time, he was comfortable in his sameness and sanity. Still, from time to time, Edweird inwardly thought of that slight opening and his life before.
He could not help himself. Nor could Edweird help become the man with the glowing orb that adumbrated his image.