by Kell Inkston
fork in the road. Alexander heard of hard
moral decisions like this from his father, and
now its his turn.
he said, my very first fork in the road.
Oh you poor
sod, how little you are prepared.
his hand with the rigidness and authority of an
officer, expecting the truth to be easily visible.
Down the left
road, of course, is a well-lit, happy wood with
kindly forest animals dancing around lovely,
singing princesses. The right road is dark,
filled with cobwebs, and the direction many alien
and alarming sounds come from.
easily to the left, happy road, and starts down
his way a few steps; but then Alexander stops. He
remembered something else his father told him,
that appearances are often false, and if
something seems to good to be true, is it truly?
He breaks into a nervous sweat as one of the fair-skinned
princesses waves at him, her bird friends
carrying water back to her step-mothers
house for her.
Alex smiles at
the girl, but steps back to the center of the
Perhaps it is
all well and good that he did not go that way,
because he is sure that the right fork will be
beautiful and kindly just a mile down the road,
whereas the seemingly happy, lovely road will
lead to naught but peril. Alex nods,
congratulating his foresight and wisdom, and then
goes down the right path. Another chill runs down
What if, he
wonders, what if the appearances really are true,
and that this will lead him into some giant
spiders den, or the domain of some dark,
cruel maniacs? Certainly life isnt all
illusions: a knife really is still a knife, right?
He returns to
the center, his fear of the uncertain stronger
than his desire for adventure. Maybe he should
just turn back, go home, fall in love with one of
the towns-girls, get married, have kids, get old,
die. Perhaps a simple life would be more his
speed. No, he wouldnt like that. It was the
stories of heroes fighting dragons and finding
treasure and meting out justice that he liked the
most as a boy. He turns back to the original fork
of the left and right path.
entire life will be decided by this moment,
he says to himself.
next if this path is designed to look this way or
not. Certainly the connecting biomes between the
forests, just meters away, wouldnt be that
great. He could probably see the right paths
forest from the left path, and vice versa. It
seems so uncanny- someone must have placed it
there! Certainly someone has pruned this to look
a certain way, and thus, the scary path must have
something thats worth hiding. Treasure,
Alex says with an intense gaze.
At that, he
runs down the right path, runs through a hologram,
and falls to his doom in the form of a pit of
spikes, made out of salt, on fire, the fire of
which also has spikes attached.
forgetting they were harvested to the mothership
eons ago. We have no need for ones that think.