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Eggs and Hourglasses
“Come forth,” commanded the mysterious voice. Stepping forwards slowly, the two figures remained cradled under a dark canvas of the deepest black.
“Soon, both of you will embark on a journey. This journey will be very long, very strange, but most of all, very fulfilling,” continued the bodiless voice from a few feet away. Both of the strange figures were quite curious about their sudden circumstance, however both felt completely at ease about what they were about to do.
“You will,” the voice continued, “Be given one golden egg to protect, and each of you will have to come back to me when you find that your hourglasses have become devoid of further sustenance.” The two figures felt their hands rise, receive the egg and the hourglass, and drop with the sudden weight of the two objects.
“Now go! Be gone! And remember, the egg must come back with you. Whichever egg is the least marred upon your return will, ultimately, be the egg of the champion. You are both equal, you both have the same knowledge, and you both have the same potential… so go on!” This completed the instructions of the unknown character. Without further warning, both figures were grabbed by a force, turned towards the same direction, and blinded by the sudden opening of what seemed to be a large door.
Stumbling out of the pitch black room, both figures found themselves completely helpless, unknowing, and dependent.
“What is my name?” choked the first small figure.
“I can’t be sure,” remarked the second one, “Where are we?” Neither of them could answer that question. They were in a place, perhaps a market, and by them passed many people, all the same, but all carrying golden eggs in front of them. Some of the eggs shown brighter than the two new-comers eggs, while some of the eggs were dull, scratched, and in the hands of people who looked careless and ragged. Looking down at their own two eggs, the two humans saw that they were completely unmarred. Without a further word, both humans departed in opposite directions.
Over time, one of the twins became known as Zion. After being released from his dark enclosure, he adjusted to a life of hard-work and integrity. Though Zion was unaware of where he came from, it seemed that everyone surrounding him had come from the dark place where Zion had been given his egg so many years before. Not one scratch had hit his egg; he had protected and valued it for its pure beauty, value, and for the fact that he was lucky enough to have been gifted with it. Never once did he steal, cheat, lie or hurt anyone. He found his life as a mission to accomplish what the voice had told him to do, and to ultimately become a champion. So far, he had succeeded.
“Stop!!!” commanded a voice of a man. This did not make a difference to the man who had been ordered. Running through the crowded streets, the man knocked into people, overturned carts, and left a trail of destruction behind him. He ran past a sign that read: MAN WANTED FOR THEFT, JAIL BREAK AND ATTEMPTED MURDER. KNOWN AS EDEN. REWARD: EGG SHINING AND DEMARKING. This man was him, Eden, and he was running from the law. He had not always been the way he was now. Eden still remembered the first day of his release into the world. Free, but unknowing, and eager to follow the interesting group with the scuffed eggs and mischievous smirks. To him, life was a chance to do as he pleased; he never once had thought about the generous voice that had given him his egg and hourglass. He simply did not care. Now his egg was quite different from what it had first been. It was dirty, cracked, and had innumerable marks imbedded deep into its surface. But even though his egg was so tainted, he still was given chances to have it restored. It would never be perfect, but it would show determination to have fixed it. Eden, however, never took those chances; he didn’t care. And that was what made him worse than any other of the egg-bearing people.
Both Zion and Eden continued their individual life-styles, and eventually, their hourglasses ran low. They were now old men, with two very different lives behind them, and were ready to return to the place where their journeys had first begun. On the same day at the same time, both returned to the spot where they had left each other, and both were stunned at what they saw. Zion viewed what he would have been like if he had chosen the wrong path. Eden viewed all of what he could have been, but had turned down. They both saw, however, the importance of a single word: Effort. Entering the dark place for the first and last time, they were again met by the same mysterious voice.
“Ahhh, how long it had been. And how much you both have changed. If you recall what I warned you of, you will obviously know who the champion is. Well done, Zion, for your superb efforts. And Eden, you’ve ashamed me! Look at that egg, all scratched and dull. And look at Zion’s, shining more brilliantly than the day he left us!” Zion smiled softly, and Eden bowed his head.
“Zion is the champion, Eden, and you will receive nothing. Nothing, for no effort. Zion, you may leave us,” and with that, Zion was escorted to a place that even he did not know was extant. Turning back to Eden, the voice said this, “You did not appreciate my gift to you, and now you are back where you started. Think about that.” And with no warning, the voice vanished, leaving Eden to think about what he had done. The dark canvas never lifted, and the voice never uttered a single word more. Never would Eden leave the dark room, and never would that thought escape his head.