I really enjoyed this Weekly Writing Challenge with the concept that a picture is worth a thousand words.
He’d been awake all night. His bare feet were blue with cold but he had one intention and one intention only. He had his path and he must follow it.
Scouring far and wide he found the place, he had travelled miles and miles over the cold hard ground to get to this point. He stood there, a stream lapping around the tough skin on the underside of his toes.
It had been a hard night, and the night before that had been too. The nights were the worst, no light, no sense of direction. This was a difficult point to reach, he thought. Not many could have done it. What did that make him? The silence echoed off the snow, even the running water seemed to be silent. Waiting. Silence was his enemy.
He saw the figure above him, facing away. Did he know he was here? Did he know he had been followed? His very own silent voyeur, just as clueless as he was as he gazed into the vast, unending countryside before him, blanketed with snow, shrouded in mist. What did he see? He desperately wanted to know and nearly screamed it out into the unanswerable air between them. But no, he had got this far.
He looked behind and saw his footsteps. He remembered taking each one of them, some tentatively placed in the snow, as if with indecision, others more clumsily located. It had not been easy, the figure in front of him, made ghostly by the mist, had and still did escape him. These footsteps smelt of desperation, he thought.
It was hard to know, he reflected, what to do next. Often we focus on the journey, and not on what we’ll do when we get there. When we get to the end we ask the same question. And he now asked himself: what next?