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 Xartis Psyxis - "The Last Confession" (contd)

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nordmann
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20120516
PostXartis Psyxis - "The Last Confession" (contd)

I rode the lanes of Ireland like a man possessed. In fact I know now that I was possessed by a sense of freedom in that indefinable and indefinite place in a way which I had never experienced in England. On horseback, at full gallop through the leafy avenues and lush meadows in this land where those virtues so often bloated by man’s vanity elsewhere of truth, honour, loyalty, fealty, sacrifice and glory had here atrophied to the point of naked destitution, all the uglier to behold therefore against the hideous beauty of the very land that had stripped them bare, I realised that I was no longer constrained by identity or obligation. Both of these conceits to which I had long subjected my will and my behaviour had I stupidly crafted using those very tools now revealed as the counterfeits they always had been, destined therefore to create counterfeit product such as the sham that was your father. I rid myself so of these inflated and false taskmasters even as I rode through that nothingness, an unthinkable step in England, an unthinkably easy one to take in a land where the closer to nothing one becomes the more presence one is afforded. It was a liberation of the spirit that I could never have found at home, nor indeed at that moment had ever felt before. I was no longer the collector of souls from Hell. I was no longer the gainer and betrayer of confidences, the sinister hand of the blindfolded masters of power, no longer the failed gardener. For a few glorious hours on horseback I was no longer anyone at all. I was no one, I was nothing, I was nowhere, and I was free.

But freedom has its price and at that moment the price I thought I had paid was a dear one indeed. To a normal man it might even have been a ruinous price. I had lured a friend to his own demise. Worse, I had made that man my friend knowing that this was always how that friendship was likely to be consummated. And yet at this moment, even realising the full import of what that meant, I could only exult in this great freedom my crime had bought me. I had no longer ready recourse to further instruction from man or deity and could never be sure in this new, strange and terrible world from where trustworthy instruction might come again, but I did not care. For the first time in years I was free to make up my own mind.

And I confess, it was then and only then, when I realised my mind was at liberty to contemplate anything or any path it wished, that I realised the purpose to my new-found ecstasy. Of course if I thought myself a guilty man I would have felt free to contemplate much that I had intently avoided in the preceding years. I had lived a lie and lived to lie. Such a life warrants contemplation. But it was not to my past crimes that my newly freed thoughts flew, or to the world of doubt and fear to which the guilty man must perforce be exiled, or indeed to the slough of despair wherein lies the essence of our souls. It was to you they flew my beautiful daughter.

I hope you appreciate Abby that I do not wish to imply you were ever far from my mind. But too often prior to this time, I found I could think only in fragments and you deserved better than that. You have always deserved better from me than you received. As I rode like the blazes through that verdant greenery with the wind searing my cheeks, I found I could see you, for the first time in years, perfectly in my mind’s eye. I heard your childish laughter as you chased moths in our garden, your cries when you stubbed your toe in our kitchen as you learnt to walk, your sweet voice as you called me your Daddy. I know I sound selfish when I say that it made me feel so close to you my daughter, but it did.

My horse shied from leaping a swollen ditch at one point and as I sat astride the beast for what seemed like an eternity, watching the roaring floodwaters emulate the flow of revelations and realisation that cascaded through my consciousness, I knew at once, in my new state of mind, where my epiphany meant me to proceed. Though I had abused the words so many times by associating them with base and worthless fantasies I now knew in my heart that I did indeed have an important work to execute. By that I meant you my darling Abby. In that moment your father found himself and found that he was a father. He had wasted time, and much else, in avoiding that truth but here in the land where truth must be strong and relentless to survive, it had found him. In that moment I would gladly have kept on riding to the ends of the earth to be with you again my daughter.

But then, as I said, though this freedom of intellect carried a price, I had again been found out in my vanity to have assumed I had paid it in advance. The price had not yet been paid, nor did I even see it when the bill was pressed into my hand. But the demand for recompense had just arrived.

At the same moment I resolved to come home, truly home, I was shot.
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