The inability to stop involving the children!
There’s this theory scientists are looking into that suggests that our Universe might just be a giant computer program. There’s another theory that says that human beings existed longgg ago, even indulging in Nuclear warfare. All over the world, unexplained, mysterious ancient artifacts have been discovered that at least point towards the fact that we don’t know everything about the past. To me, these two theories could co-exist, as could they with the theory bout aliens watching over our planet. The reason I bring this up is because I like to believe that some of our older tales and information have trickled down from these futuristic ancestors of ours.
For instance, take the story of the Pied Piper of Hamlin. Long story short, there’s a village of lazy, greedy people that get affected by a plague. Being lazy, they do nothing about the situation until it gets utterly out of hand. At which point in the story, the Pied Piper makes his entrance. He plays music for the people, but finds them super-stingy. It’s only the children that stop to listen to him. And, then too, they’re most often dragged away by their parents. Then, noticing a couple of reward-on-getting-rid-of-rats signs, the piper goes to the palace/mayor and claims that he can rid the city of the rats in 2 days (or something). The people smirk at him, and agree.
That night, the Piper gets up, and starts playing a soft tune. He plays in his room for a bit, and then steps out, his lips never leaving the pipe. As he walks through the village, slowly, rats start filing out of hidden nooks and crevices, falling into line behind him. The piper plays and plays, and the rats continue to pour out, as if in a stream, and slowly, yet surely, the piper begins to lead his absurd following towards the river. As he stands by and plays, one after the other, the rats leap off the stone bridge to their doom, and the few villagers awake to witness this, shudder and bar their doors.
The next morning, the piper goes up to the council/mayor and asks for his reward. “What reward?”, says the mayor, feigning ignorance.
The piper’s eyes grow cold. “The rats are gone.”
“Yes, and?”, asked the mayor, even as the greedy, stingy people looked on. “What had you to do with it?”
“I got rid of them, like I said I would.”
“I don’t know what you’re talking about.” said the mayor.
“Are you sure?” asked the piper softly, head bent low so that his cap prevented anyone from looking into his eyes. “You’ll regret this.”
“Are you threatening me?!”, asked the mayor. “Guards!”
The pied piper raised in hands in a non-threatening gesture, and slowly backed out of the packed hall, which let out a collective sigh of relief. Something about that man was very unnerving.
That night, when the inhabitants of the town are fast asleep, a beautiful tune starts to sound in the night air, soft enough to not wake a soul. Except, one by one, in every house, the children start to wake up. Quietly, they drop out of their beds. Stealthily, they sneak out of their homes. One by one, every child turns around and bolts the door shut. The pied piper continues his song, and the children fall in line behind him.
By now, parents have begun to notice their children missing. At first, they worry. Upon finding themselves locked in their little houses, they begin to panic. The fear spreads through the town like wildfire. “Look! There they are!”, screams a little boy’s mother, pressed against her window and pointing out into the distance.
Faint strains of the piper’s song can still be heard by villagers.
“He’s going to drown them!”, sobs another mother, even as her husband falls into a faint.
But the piper turns away from the river where the rats had leapt to their end, and starts moving towards the nearby mountains.
By now, some of the parents have managed to free themselves. Soon, most of the town is free, and they rush up and down, collecting torches and horses to ride out after their children before the night swallowed them whole.
Meanwhile, the children hadn’t looked back once, their eyes focused on their leader with the strange hat and the musical pipe. If any of them had bothered to turn around, they would have been surprised to see how far they had come, certainly further than most of them ever previously had.
Except for one boy. The town’s only cripple, the lame child had fallen behind as the trail of children followed the pied piper up the winding mountain path.
Soon, he was the only one the search party that was sent out to find the kids could see.
The pied piper, along with all the children of the village – they just vanished into thin air. When the distraught parents finally reached the crippled boy, they found him standing and staring at the side of a mountain, tears streaming down his face. “They didn’t wait for me.”, he finally said, sounding as if his world had shattered.
The parents of the village were inconsolable, and wished that they had done right by the pied piper, but they never saw him, nor any of heir children, ever again.
~~~ The End ~~~
Okay, so that was pretty much long story long, but, well, I like telling stories. And, since it has been forever since I last read the Pied Piper of Hamlin, it’s more like a cover than the real story. I’m sure I got a hundred things wrong. Just think of it as the modern retelling.
Anyhow, the reason I brought up the tale of the Pied Piper, as well as the theories about computers/aliens, is: What if this story isn’t just a metaphorical reference to the fact that children will leave you if you stifle their fresher spirits with your jaded talk of wealth while they still believe in dreams?
I personally think it’s an allegorical reference to Moses and his leading of the people into the desert in the quest for the promised land. Or the advent of Christianity after the Jewish community unfairly treated Christ, who dealt with it so well, that nearly all of their children “left” to “follow” him.
Either way, I think if Aliens are involved (or a supercomputer program, or God-like futuristic ancestors), the implications of this story would be a lot more straightforward.. and a lot more sinister.
Treat your children right, or we will take them from you.
If humanity doesn’t change its ways, the planet will either find a way to destroy us, or we, the planet. The virus will most likely affect our ability to reproduce, counting on the barbaric nature of man to ensure it’s spread across the globe.
And we will die.
Sometimes I think that is the only way to stop the screaming in my ears.
How can you stand it?
Sometimes I think that to die would be more of a relief than an adventure..
Especially when I think of the children.
Our descendants should be ashamed of us…
and if they are not, then we should be ashamed of them.