Gardi and Little Mouser were slowly coming down and were just a few feet from touching the ground. They had taken their flight over the western cliffs, and, as always, the updrafts had been magnificent! Little Mouser shook up the nesting puffins by screeching at the top of his lungs imitating a hungry albatross. The boy could really be a turd sometimes. The pair then swooped out to Shark Tooth Island and made a few declining orbits before finally gliding back towards the desolate beach. The sun was now falling back into the sea, giving the entire horizon the tint of a pumpkin field in October. Little Mouser touched down on the beach first and then exhaled like he had just finished a laborious chore. A moment later, Gardi made a knee bending landing in the wet sand.
“That was great, Mouser. Absolutely, phantasmagorically wonderful!”
“Let’s do it again!” shouted Little Mouser.
“I’m done in, boy,” laughed Gardi. “First off, we rode those meadow dragons till they nearly collapsed from exhaustion, and then we flew up the coast and went canopy zipping through the great Redwood forest. If that was not enough, you then took off and boarded that Humpback Whale and rode it for miles down along the coast before I finally caught up with you.”
“Never rode a whale before,” Little Mouser nodded his head, “Pretty cool.”
“Well, the day’s about shot, and it’s nearly time.”
“Naw, c’mon Gardi, just one more thing, okay? I promise, then I’ll be ready.”
Gardi stared down at his ward with a heavy heart. “Okay, but don’t get hacked at me if it ends too soon.”
“No sweat, I promise. Okay, what we gonna do?” Down the beach, obscured in the settling darkness, Little Mouser could hear the heavy gait of rhythmic ‘thumping’. As it grew louder and closer, he soon made out the glowing alabaster of a magnificent Lipizzan stallion as it galloped down the beach towards him. Soon the steed came to a stop next to him, glowing almost fluorescent in it’s pearly coat.
Gardi helped him up on the horse’s back and then stood back to admire him. Down the beach, for nearly a quarter of a mile, dozens of torches suddenly lit up illuminating the now dark expanse. “Make it quick, Mouser. You only have till you reach the last torch. Ride well my little friend, and savor this moment.” With that, Gardi stepped back into the night shadows and was forever gone. The powerful animal then took off.
Little Mouser was jolted by it’s great power and strength. Terrifying, but, oh so exhilarating at the same time. The world now flew by like a torrent of images. The young boy now felt supreme as he absorbed the true essence of his glorious life. He bent over grasping the horse’s mane and whispered, “Take me all the way....faster and faster till I can feel the burn of living.” They rode past the lit torches in a blur. The turbulence of the galloping stallion was so great it blew over most of the torches as it kicked up swirling sand devils from it back hooves. As Little Mouser and his great mount rode past the last torch, an embracing blanket of calm settled over the young boy. He now felt relaxed....and then he let go of the mane.
The surgeon sighed, and then stepped back from the operating table. “Call it.”
“3:23, doctor,” answered the anesthesiologist.
“Such a shame. He was so young,” commented the scrub nurse.
“Spent most of his life in a wheelchair,” replied the surgeon. “The little guy never really lived.”