Solomon at the height of his power sought to resurrect Babylon, a city in the desert where the mythical garden of Eden could descend upon. Scouring the far reaches of his realm, he discovers traces of a dried-up system of water ways that had long been scrawled out by the passages of time. The nexus at their intersections form a vast underground hull several miles wide, the result of perhaps a meteoric impact from ages past. Entering the cavernous space, he finds faint trickles of water emanating from an unknown source. Following the residual streams leads to the entrance of a sealed chamber blocked by a massive boulder. Two large hand-prints cover its side along with an inscription in an unknown yet familiar language. Placing his hands over the impression, a woman’s voice whispered from without. “Beware of floods. Towers and arks won’t save you this time.”
“It’s time” announced papa as a gentle rumble crept over the train tracks.
“I’m scared! What’ll happen to you?” cried the youngling with a doleful look below.
“The wind has come to take me and scatter my essence across the land. Such is the way of life my child.”
The tracks began to shake; hum turned into roar. The youngling covered her eyes and whispered “Will I ever see you again?”
Papa nodded and faced the sun.
A resounding whoosh followed an eclipse.
When the child opened her eyes, papa was gone.
A single yellow petal fluttered against the wind.
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Four rivers became two. Two became one. The flow took Ariel downstream from her little home by a creek all the way to the great-wide sea. With her new-found freedom, she traversed the seven oceans, growing strong and worldly. Sometimes she swam with a group through dangerous passages fret with sharks and killer whales. Other times, she swam alone to go places unseen. Hidden caverns, coral reefs, lost cities she adventured. But with each passing spring, a twinge of an eroding memory would flare. It would send her packing towards the coast, looking for the river-mouth whence she came.
One river became two. Two became four… Leira combated the raging currents as the migration upstream commenced. Waterfalls and whirlpools littered their path while great beasts from both land and air hunted them daily. With each passing fork, the numbers appear but a dwindling fraction as the elements turned hostile against the flow. Fortunately, her previous life taught her the skills of survival from finding gullies where the current subsided to navigating the rapids under the cover of night. By season’s end, she found herself in the old creek near forgotten. Checking that the surroundings safe, she knew her journey was coming to an end but would be the start for her children. Laying a thousand eggs along the creek’s bed, Leira named them Ariel and fell into the eternal sleep.