Before dawn, long before the warm sun breaks the horizon, you awake. The open window it is quiet except for a few early birds in the branches and crickets sawing their nightly monotony.

Then all goes quiet. Not a sound; a complete silence. Your nerves tense slightly expecting something…anything.

Off into the forest you hear leaves rustle, approaching your own zone. That place in which you are always aware.  A place protected at any cost.

Then it passes outside your window. Branches lift. A quiet whisper of sound, like echoes of distance voices. Voices without words. Sound without resonance.

A lump like cold mud pumps too slow through your heart. Many forks of a path unknown lay in your history. What you just heard was the passing of that other lifeline. Your alter history. The one which shelters all those dreams gone; where youth eternal bides.

Age creeping upon us stirs thoughts of what has been…and…what might have been.

Yes, Doug. You missed something while you slept.