Prelude 71

The cat looked at him suspiciously, eyeing the saucer of milk that was being held out as a peace offering.

The eternal decision lay before him: wild reckless freedom, or sensible comfortable bondage.

Prelude70

He sat on the rocks, staring dreamily at the wild North Sea churning white around him. The wind howled, tugging icily at his clothing. The girls had decided to give the walk a miss, pleading the atrocious weather as an excuse and preferring to curl lazily inside where a log fire roared in the cottage hearth.

Aaron needed the space his daily walks provided. As much as he loved his family he was by nature an introvert and became rapidly frazzled by too much social contact.

In the distance a light house stood solidly, bravely against the elements, ready to warn off stricken ships from these treacherous shores.

Prelude 69

Aaron watched from his window as the youth cowered under the lamp light, spray can in hand, painting graffiti on the alley wall. He seemed a pretty decent artist, Aaron thought, but had not yet decided whether graffiti was protest art or just plain vandalism.

Either way it seemed to be more about notoriety than point, and soon the inevitable trademark logo was sprayed and the youth bounded off into the darkness.

Aaron couldn't quite make out what had been painted but didn't really care. He wondered if he would have any luck getting back to sleep.