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Sunday, 20 December 2009

The Inventor

He'd worked for years to get this far, so many years of countless experimenting and disordered findings. He was the top of his field, though what that field was no one could tell. His name was not well-known, nor was his existence. He lived a solitary life, at the top of a tower, the rest of which lay uninhabitted by any living form.

The ticking was what made it noticeable, the clockwork tick that rang clear through the forest in which the tower sat. It was a lucky coincidence that the travellers from the nearest town just so happened to be passing when the ticking began it's annual mournful chorus. They say that the mechanism cannot feel emotion but they did not know his creations - they felt as well as any human being. Their loss was great.

Their existence was nothing but walking in circles, up and down the great tower. They had no purpose, not anymore. They were lifeless beings, simply existing. Their universe was a tower in a forest and nothing more. They knew nothing of the outside world and they did not need to. Their mournful movements fuelled them, kept them going.

But one day, it stopped. As the travellers walked the steps to the large brass doors of the tower the ticking stopped - silence swept through the forest with a chill like no other. And there they were - frozen mechanical figures like monuments in a churchyard.

He'd worked for years to get this far, surrounded by his machines. A skeleton trapped in a mechanism in a museum made from stone.

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