"The Old Man" is the first installment of a short story series sharing Matt's adventures
| There is a bright Aurora beam, filled with colors, high and delicate, covering like a cloth the Icelandic sky over the city of Reykjavík. The only thing Matt would change was the frigid weather. "I always wanted to be in Iceland" Matt exclaimed with his hands covering his chest to create some warmth, "Is fascinating all the things that this land hides... At least that's what the website says." He finished, with an eruption of laughter coming from Dave at the last comment, you couldn’t see Dave’s new white shirt under that huge, red, massive sweater that was so big that it gives you the impression it tried to swallow him. The only part of his body that was not covered was his super white face, now with a red nose due to the cold and a pair of Ray Ban Wayfarer sunglasses. Even if the sun is not that high, he seems to have the tradition to cover his blue eyes behind the same pair of glasses.
"Well, this place is indeed beautiful" Dave added, taking some time to admire the incredible and delicate aurora beam above them. "I wish we had more time to enjoy the landscape, but," grabbing Matt by his left arm "we have business to do" Dave said in a serious tone. pulling Matt towards the Airport entrance; ruining Matt's moment while he studied the landscape.
As soon as Matt got into the Hotel Room he decided to take a hot and long shower. After the shower he took some time to prepare some details of his presentation to have everything ready. Like his father, Matt was obsessed with reading the presentation over and over again to avoid leaving any important point behind. His father used to call Critical Facts to every aspect of a presentation regarding the stocks and financial situation of the company. Having everything checked and double-checked with Dave’s help Matt decided to continue with his task of finding The Right Suit. Again in the bathroom, Matt took some time to admire how his body have changed thanks to all the weight he lost in the past few months. The anchor tattoo with the inscription Be Brave over his chest looked smaller now, you could easily count Matt’s ribs if you just stare at him. Ten minutes passed before he decided what he wanted to wear. With Dave already with his suit in the other room they headed their way down to the conference room. Everyone got there at the stipulated time. Developing the presentation and exchanging words with the Icelandic company owners took a good three hours lapse. At least we can say the meeting was a success, at least everyone was excited about the new goals for the upcoming year. His father used to say, before dying, that making a partner excited about something closed every kind of a deal. Is a shame he was not there to see his son doing just that, he would be proud.
There’s one more presentation with a client in two days and everything is ready for the meeting with that company. Some quiet time alone to rest seems like the best idea right now. Out of the elevator Matt took the key of his hotel room and trusted it into the doorknob. As soon as he entered, he closed the door behind him, and expecting to see the magnificence of the architecture and the people again through the window, all he could see was a white fox, white as snow, with furry dirty paws, the fox is staring at me was the first thing that came to his mind. From the second floor of the hotel was easy to explore the factions of such beautiful beast, it was also easy to know that he ought to follow that fox, pretty absurd thing to think about, after all, is just one of those thoughts that are the product of imagination and curiosity combined.
Leaving the hotel room he went to the elevator to find that it was in the eleventh floor, descending the hotel stairs two at the time full with excitement he found himself standing at the lobby. Not wasting any minute he went outside to greet the white fox. "Where are we going?" Matt whisper in the Fox’s ear. Excitement was found in the way the question was asked. Answering Matt’s question, the white fox look at a prominent tree in a forest not too far, maybe a mile away. Leading the path the fox moved in a refined way through the trees, the hotel is barely visible at this point, and all Matt could hear were his footsteps synchronizing with the fox steps in a melodic pace. After a couple of minutes he could listen to an exquisite sound, a violin being played, the sounds getting stronger with every step. About to approach the big three, still a couple of meters away; a bright golden glow streaming through the threes, the light is being produced by a prominent fig three, the same three that seems to produce the sweet melody. The fox is nowhere to be seen after a couple of seconds, he vanished through the threes. Paying no mind to the absence of the fox his thoughts were interrupted as he stood still in front of a massive table, apparently made of Koa.
"Please Matt be my guest and have a sit." Said the man in a regarding tone. "This place is where I met your father, he was a really enthusiastic man, about your age he was when I met Him. He was on a trip to this land and since the very first moment I knew that he was capable of something big." He said the last sentence with a bit of melancholy. "I can see every ones dreams," he added "the ones that were accomplished and the ones that no one even fought for. I saw Maurice Koechlin and Émile Nouguier design the Eiffel Tower, I was there when J.R.R. Tolkien had the idea of Middle Earth." At the mention of those names he couldn't figure out who this being was nor what the mentioned persons had in common. "Of all places you could be, you're here. I'm not just talking of this place" He regarded with a gesture of his hands. "I'm also talking about to where your decisions have brought you, an important place in a company, a big house with a nice car in the garage, all that to be filled with the simple and worthless illusion of a family. An illusion living in your head and nothing more."
"Seems like you know me pretty well" Matt said trying to keep his tone flat and not showing any emotion "It also turns out that I might know who you are" Even if this is Matt's first encounter with this being, he knew deep in his hearth that this is The Old Man his father used to mention in his night tales in bed when he was still a child.
"I could see that coming" He declared "Truth be told I met your father in this same place. A great man he was, if you let me say. Working hard to support and maintain a family, but also losing it altogether in the process.
"Some receive my signals and understand them, in other cases is necessary to send my companions before them. After all, few are the ones who pay attention to my words and know me and work with me, and they work with me not because I need them, they do it because they like the outcome when they use me." At that moment Matt couldn't hide his confusion and after a moment the Old Man continued, "I am wisdom as I am knowledge all the same. I've been here for so many years. Is not true that you can't live life without me, but Oh! Poor are the ones who decide to do it that way."
"My dad used to call you The Old Man." Matt added. "But I guess that's not your name I think"
"I'm old for sure. But, I'm Wisdom." The now identified being said. "The ones who find me and listen to my words find also knowledge. I show them the way and help them through the path of life"
"I always thought that Wisdom was just an idea, not a physical body or something that precisely existed." Matt included, "I never though you were in the forest of Skógrækt ríkisins, Iceland." It never crossed Matt's mind if truth be told.
"Certainly I am everywhere, even if I can take a physical form I like to go around and play with people's world, work things around according to their point of view. After all, they are the ones who decide if they will listen or if they will just ignore me." As if trying to remember something he continue with the story. "I used the same signal with you as I did with your father. I also showed myself as I'm doing it to you right now,” Now is easy to understand why Matt’s father was so impressed by Wisdom’s form. An Old Man as his father called him, robes white as snow protecting his body and a long gray beard that fell to his waist and delicate green grass growing around his bare feet “and the reason for that is. There are ones whose future is so bright that the world cannot afford let them fall into Oblivion and let their names be forgotten, and that's why I'm here. Your father's fate was completely unpredicted and even I admit that, but please, have a seat and let me share with you the same conversation that I had with him some years ago."
In that exact moment Matt sat on the far end of the table, facing Wisdom. Maybe he was not ready yet, but the words that are going to find a house in Matt’s head cannot be wasted nor delayed. Knowing who He really was an purpose in life was one of Matt’s biggest questions. Not sure if he could bear the truth, he opened his ears, his mind and finally… he listened. This is just the beginning of the fight for his life. Brave as his anchor tattoo stated, he embraced himself and the conversation started.