Beverly stared at the three stone entrances. “They don’t have doors.”
Kara nodded, “They’re more like lenses, or glasses than doorways.”
“I don’t understand.”
Kara’s laughter was not spiteful, but amused, “I didn’t either, at first.” She walked to the entrances. “It took a long time to figure them out.”
“What are they?”
“Projectors, maybe? I don’t really know.”
Beverly walked to the short one toward the center of the three. “Do they show what’s real? Or is it some kind of trick?” She stepped into the door, and came out on the other side.
“They don’t lead anywhere, Bev. They just show you things.”
“Look around.” Beverley did. She saw the floor of the valley, and the mountains surrounding it. A few scattered trees. An ocean of clouds that blocked most of the light. But they weren’t storm clouds. Gray, and heavy, almost sad, as if not happy with how things were.
“What do you see?”
“The same thing you do.” She waved her arm. “This lost, forgotten place with these silly entrances in the middle of nowhere.”
“Look carefully. Look at the sky, the clouds, the mountains over there. Take a good look. Remember what they look like.” Beverly shrugged, but looked around as Kara had asked.
“Remember what it all looks like. Now. Look through one of them,” Kara pointed at the entrances.
Beverly looked through the center of the three. It was a bright, happy, sunlit day. A few clouds that cast shadows on the ground. “I like that one.” She pointed at the center entrance. “It’s pretty. I like it there.”
Kara clapped, “Do you know where that is?”
“Do you know where the image is that you see when you look through that entrance?”
“Someplace I’d rather be.”
“No, no, no. Take a good look. Look at how the lines match the background, outside the entrance. How, when you move side to side, what you see in the entrance changes.”
Beverly took several steps to the side, as she stared through the entrance. She stopped, and shook her head. Then moved several steps to the other side. She noticed. No matter where she moved, what was in that doorway always matched the lines in the background. Always. The same valley floor. The same hills. The same trees, and bushes. Everything was the same.
“The others are the same way. They show the part of the valley you can see through them in completely different ways.” Kara giggled. “They give you three totally different perspectives on this place.”
“What good is that?”
Kara walked to each door. “It’s like people, don’t you see?”
“No. I don’t.”
“It’s how people see the exact same thing. The same events. The same lives. The same problems. And work, and bills, and houses, and cars, and flowers, and everything else.”
“What are you talking about, Kara?”
“Bev! It’s like the doors are there to teach us. To show us. That our own perceptions. Our own thoughts are limited. And someone else will have different thoughts. Different perceptions. Of the same thing.”
Beverly thought, and looked through all three entrances. “What good does that do?”
Kara waved off Beverly’s question. “Oh, nothing. Nothing at all.” But it told her everything she ever needed to know about Beverly. “She can’t see anything, can she? Only what she wants to see. Only what she believes. Only what she knows and understands.” Kara frowned, but only for a moment, and she quickly covered her frown with an artificial smile. “No sense in disturbing Bev.”
“I just thought it was interesting.”
They explored the valley a bit more, looked at some of the bushes, and the trees, and even found a few mushrooms in a shady spot, behind a couple of big rocks. Then they headed back to their car, and to their normal worlds.
And Kara wondered if she’d ever find someone who understood. Or if everyone she’d ever know was like Beverly. Blind to everything outside of themselves.
Miranda Kate‘s weekly short fiction challenge is in it’s 40th week. You can read about her small fiction challenge here. This week, I knew what I wanted to say. Don’t know if I said it, but at least I tried. Please, go read Miranda’s short tale this week, and any others that showed up. The tales are always little works of art, crafted with words, meant to be shared, and enjoyed. And many of them are amazing.