Back in the Forest, Knight began to struggle with his thoughts. What was he going to say to Knymph? And after he admitted his lie, would she accept his words and know that he now told the truth?
He wandered as he thought, not really paying much attention to where he was headed, until he strode into puddle.
“Daft fool. That will teach me, walking while my head’s in the clouds.”
He looked up at large gray stone that stood in a pool of water. It seemed massive in height, though slender in width, with a stream of water trickling down its center. He could hear a soft moaning that sounded like weeping. Then a whisper,
“You step in my tears.”
Startled, Knight could only sputter,
“Never mind,” said the voice now in a normal tone. “I have a riddle for you.”
“A riddle?” Knight turned around to see if he could spot who spoke to him, but no one appeared to be here.
“Well, actually it’s more of a paradox. Riddles are a bit passé, don’t you think?”
“Indeed,” he agreed. Then said more firmly, “I certainly wish I knew who I am speaking with.”
“Hmm.” Knight responded, but his heart pounded heavily, because he was nearly certain that the voice was coming from the great stone in front of him.
You could meet a woman more organized and practical, neater and a much better housekeeper than Knymph. You could meet a better cook, one with a better memory, a craftier woman, and a far superior and more experienced lover. You probably already know a woman who is younger, has longer hair, and material wealth. There are many women who know how to handle money and men much more successfully than she. You can definitely find someone who is less stubborn…someone safer…someone less in need of protection…someone who dresses more fashionably…and someone with a lighter past. Of course you have already met women much prettier and beautiful physically. A female less of a maze and more of a woman, less vulnerable, less of a smart ass, and less of a pain in the ass surely can be found. But this I can promise you…you will never meet anyone with a Heart like Knymph’s. Her Heart is what her friends love best about her…yet it is what they most fear. They fear she will end up hurt again. Devastated. And perhaps, next time, Knymph will be unable to rise from the ashes and they will never see her again. Knymph does not wish to protect her heart, but her friends? Well, they do wish it all the time…
It makes Knymph sad that her friends feel this way…sad for them…and a bit sad for herself. She isn’t angry though, no matter how harsh their words may be at times. Knymph listens with her Heart and the Heart always hears what is beneath words. Beneath the harshness lies fear, and beneath the fear, love can always be found.
The best traps laid are the ones laid by ourselves. And why ever would we do such a thing? Good question.
All she noticed at first was the heat. A burn that came from the inside out. Had she swallowed a sun? If so, did it have to be such a big one? She tried to sit up, but cried out. A pricking sensation danced around her forehead and a piercing pain shot through her belly. Then came the dread…a demon had escaped the Weeping Stone. A tear rolled down her cheek. ‘Not again,’ she thought.
“I don’t have time for this!” Knymph said aloud.
Suddenly, she knew something else. Knight is back in the Forest. But…he left. He said he would never return. She could feel his presence though, and the demon. How did a demon get loose (again)?
Sadness is a tricky matter. And in fact all emotions are quite tricky. Anger, disappointment, jealousies, grief, and worn out resentments, these can all turn inward or outward to destroy. That’s why Knymph placed all these feelings in the Weeping Stone. This worked out very well, most of the time. When a sensation became too overwhelming to shoulder, Knymph walked straight to the Weeping Stone, released that anger or sadness into the rock and moved on.
The problem was that the Stone grew. Rough textured and salt and peppery in hues, the stone stood well over twenty feet in height. A pool of gray tears lay at its base. Through the years, the salt of the tears had eaten away at the soil around it. Nothing grew here, except the Stone. The Weeping Stone had two important functions. One, to hold Knymph’s murkiest musings. Second, guard the entrance and exit of the Dark Forest…Knymph’s other world. A place of secrets past, haunting memories, and where monsters trolled…