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by WaylandCybersmith

"Come on, shake a leg."

I pulled the bedclothes over my head.

"Come on, it's time for the climb."

I sighed noisily, twisted myself onto the floor, and stared downwards. Every move was an effort of will.

"Get dressed and get down here, there's no time to lose."

I did as I was told. On the table waiting for me was a feast. There were eggs, sausages, bacon, mushrooms, and a steaming hot mug of tea. It took me less than five minutes to devour it all.

I was feeling somewhat better as I put on my topcoat and my rucksack, and grasped my walking stick. Then he opened the door.

It was raining. The sky was black as night, and it was raining. Water streamed down the road as he marched out ahead of me.

"Can't we do this another day? We'll get soaked."

"Come on, will you? This is perfect."

After what seemed like hours, we reached the bottom of the footpath. Already I was soaked to the skin, but there was nowhere to go but up.

He was striding forward, bounding from one rock to another. I trudged on behind, wishing I was back in bed.

We had been climbing for an hour when we reached cloud height. It was like being in thick fog. Cold and wet. Breathing became difficult because of the water in the air.

I heard him call out to me, and followed the sound of his voice, being very careful where I stepped because visibility was so poor.

Gradually the fog cleared. That is, we were now above the cloud top. The sky above was deep blue, and the sun burned hot and bright. Below us was the expanse of cloud. I watched as wisps broke off and melted, or combined into greater clumps of cloud.

More walking, and we reached the summit. He was laying out on the grass, hands clasped behind his head, eyes closed and fast asleep. I did the same for a while, between times when I would be staring up into the sky.

Below us was the cloud, the darkness, and the rain. Above us, the sun, brightness and warmth.

I had fallen asleep again, when he shook me by the shoulder.


"Remember what?"

"When we go back down, and it is cold, or raining, or snowy, remember what you have seen here on the mountain top. Carry it with you."

The rain clouds had been burnt off by the sun, and we could see all the way to the valley below. The journey down did not take long, nor did the walk home.

As I went to bed that night, he gave me a picture of a rainstorm, which bore the words:

Above the clouds, the sun still shines

© WaylandCybersmith 2011


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