The Antithesis of Combat: Lure of the Mountains

Lure of the Mountains.
(“Foothills Children”, by Doug Zwick / CC BY-NC 2.0 / Desaturated from original)

Let me now deepen my fantastic assumptions and establish that these kids would never grow old. Well, they would eventually reach sixty, seventy or even ninety years of age and then die like we do, but their bodies would remain the same throughout their lives. This means that women would never exist, only little girls that wouldn’t elicit nor feel any sexual appeal. Boys and girls would forever attend to their chores and play with their toys. This is not to say that they wouldn’t become mature — they would. But their relish would never move from that innocent playfulness of childhood towards the lustful shallowness of an alcohol-induced hunt for the pleasures of flesh. Their vices would be others.

During the “Great Migration”, the integration of city kids into the lives of their rural counterparts would not have been based on any type of commercial relation. The surplus of food in the country and its essentiality for life, in contrast to city toys (very important but not as essential), could have easily generated a trading relationship, but that did not happen. There could have formed a caste-based society where the few owners of the food would have dominated the many with toys, which would in turn soon become “toyless”, or die of hunger. But they were kids, and even kids know that everyone needs food to live. And they had had enough of death. Moreover, who would ever want to play alone? They all would have been happy enough to meet other kids, far from the infested cities where their parents’ bodies lay. Yes, there would have been disputes among the children, as there have always been, but they would have vanished as quickly as they had appeared, and no sorrow or resentment would have remained.

Yet time would go by.

Somewhere across that world without adults, word-of-mouth would eventually spread that a little community across the nearest mountain pass had toys that were different from those of the children who lived in the prairies below. It would also be said that these mountain kids had somehow acquired the almost magical craft of making chocolate. Of course, it would have helped that cocoa grew in the rainy forests of their valley; unfortunately, it didn’t in the unfruitful grasses of the huge rangeland of the prairie kids. But they could go and check out those other kids from above, couldn’t they? They would have been curious and bored with the same unchanging toys. And they couldn’t avoid those recurrent dreams. Time an time again, around March and April, they would dream about huge chocolate eggs with candy inside, and beautiful smiles that they believed came from their parents. What harm could a little visit to the mountains cause?

(To be continued…)

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