Prelude

It was a quiet morning down by the cemetery as two men silently dug what had been an old grave and was meant to become a new one. The sun had not yet risen, but was still lingering somewhere behind the glowing hills in the distance. There were no words between the two grave diggers, merely a plain exchange of heavy breaths as they plunged their shovels into the cold earth and spewed out the gravel on the huge pile on the side. None of them seemed to mind the cool air as both were shirtless and had foreheads dripping with thick drops of sweat and, even though one of them appeared rather old and worn out while the other was young and brawny, there was no difference in the swiftness and rhythm of their movements.

‘Say, Tom,’ said the young one, ‘do you mind if I stop for a cigarette?’

‘Go ahead,’ said Tom, ‘it’s you who’ll have to finish the job anyway, my back is starting to grow stiff.’

‘No problem, you can rest, I’ll cover for you all right. You might still consider retiring, though,’ said the young man, ‘there’s only so much a man can dig and you’re very close to that edge.’

The old man said nothing and continued with his digging. The first rays of light had now reached the top of the tall chestnut trees and a faint lazy steam began to rise from amongst the big leaves, thus allowing for a barely visible golden contour to surround the cemetery from above. It, then, all went dark. Just like that. There was no warning, no sign of the event coming to pass, not even a shadow gradually growing stronger, it was just like somebody had instantly evaporated all light. There was a startled ‘What the hell?’ coming from the young man’s mouth and then silence.

‘Tom!’ Yelled the young man, ‘Tom, are you still here?’

‘I’m still here,’ Tom replied with a calm voice.

‘I think I may have gone blind’

‘No such thing happened, Adam. It is just dark outside.’

‘The sun was just up and now everything is pitch black, Tom. I’m  telling you, something happened to me, I can’t see a thing.’

 

……………………

‘Tell me, Adam,’ said Tom with a curious tone, ‘do you believe in the supernatural?’

‘What do you mean by that? As in ghosts and stuff?’

‘Not as in ghosts and stuff,’ the old man said with an angry voice, ‘don’t just go placing everything there is in used up cliches. Just answer the question as it is: do you believe in the supernatural?’

Adam hesitated for a second and then replied:

‘Just take a second and look at what we’re doing here, Tom. Should the supernatural exist, there wouldn’t be so much peace and quiet down in this place. At least one of the burried would, if not get up and walk away, at least revolt at the poor conditions of life. But there’s not a sound, nothing. If anything, this here is a fine example of the unnatural. That I’ve seen plenty of.’

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