After the evening meal, buoyed with a feeling of determination, Sam and Jon went in to Aaron’s hut. Aaron, as usual, was lying helplessly. The only sign of life from him was that his eyes blinked and he moved his head an inch more in their direction as though to acknowledge them. Sam, in particular, was desperate for a change for their friend. He felt responsible for this misfortune that had befallen their friend. He knew it really had not been his fault but at the same time, his emotions did not always make that much sense. He just knew it could easily have been Jon or himself and if there was a solution, they just had to find it.
Jon jumped straight in and told Aaron that they had decided to take him to some miracle worker in the village next door. He explained that it would only take them an hour’s walk and it would be a day out for Aaron. Aaron began to shake his head in protest but Sam and Jon just ignored him and carried on talking about all the news they had heard regarding the guy. No one seemed to know his name but people just called him the miracle worker.
Aaron did not want to build up his hopes again. It was all too disappointing! He had tried everything, been carted to different places with no results except an increasing despair that he really truly was trapped in this lifeless body. Each time, his hopes were dashed, his despair grew. Some people in the village had practised their supposed faith on him and he had to put up with them telling him it was his fault for not believing enough – Believing WHAT?! He wondered. And here he was again, with his two true friends, having to face another hope destroying, despair building trip, but what could he do, they were determined so he decided to humour them. After all, if it did not work, he was back here doing the same things so nothing to lose. He really did not want to think about the other side of that equation, it all seemed too impossible.
Aaron smiled at them and said he would willingly come with them. This surprised them somewhat but Sam and Jon decided not to look a gift horse in the mouth as it would be easier to take him if he agreed to do it. So off they went to get a good night’s rest.
In the meantime, Aaron cried out in himself to the Big Guy, to not disappoint his friends again. It was time he died or he got better. He was happy to die…
The next morning, Sam and Jon arrived bright and early, just as the sun was rising. They covered him with his blankets and lifted his bed/stretcher up onto their shoulders and walked slowly out of the village. Other villagers looked on silently. Aaron could see the pity in their eyes and as always no one caught his eye as he tried to smile at them.
It had been a while since Aaron had been out of the village so he enjoyed the change of scenery. Just being out of his normal environment made him feel a bit better inside and looking around at the scenery as they walked filled his heart with a little joy. His friends started to sing a song as they walked. He tried to join in though his voice was mostly unused these days so it was a bit croaky. All three of them laughed. It was a good day.
After a little while, they started to see crowds of people walking swiftly towards the village as well. As they carried on, the numbers increased and on asking, they realised everyone was headed to the same place. There were other people carrying stretchers of relatives and friends and everyone was headed to the same place. In fact, as they carried on walking towards the hut where the miracle worker was seated, some people were turning away and going back home dejected. When asked why, they stated they could not get close enough for the guy to help them so they had given up. Aaron, on hearing this, looked at Sam and Jon and wondered if they would be too disappointed if they could not actually speak to the miracle worker. All three of them fell silent as they contemplated what lay ahead. On they walked until the hut was in view. There were swarms of people everywhere and an eerie silence descended upon everyone as the miracle worker began to speak. Somehow, everyone around the hut could hear him, even though he was seated inside it.
The miracle worker spoke right to Aaron’s heart as he spoke of despair and hope, of shame, guilt and fear. Aaron felt his heart lifting. He just knew that if he could get to see the guy, today was his day. He looked at his friends – Sam was listening intently while Jon seemed a bit disappointed. Aaron looked around to see from his vantage point on his friends’ shoulders to see if there was any way through the crowds. All he could see was people squashed together like sardines. But then, a thought occurred to him – He looked at the roof of the hut.
To be continued…