Against the wall, this barrier, that was separating him from his partner; from the person he looked up to most in this world.
He was newest member of an adventure team, and while he respected and learned much from their veteran leader, it was the individual trapped behind this wall that was the most important figure in his world. Their leader taught him about life, but his partner was his life.
He walked the perimeter of his friend’s confinement for seemingly the hundredth time and came up empty once again. One continuous wall that sometimes curved, but apparently never ended, was simply too high to climb and had not a single door to be found. Impossible to scale and equally so to go under, there was nothing he could do.
There was no way in.
He smashed his fists against the wall once again. Harder this time, the force of his action betraying his pent up anger and sense of hopelessness. At this, his partner turned his head and smiled when he saw its source. How could he be smiling at a time like this? But deep down he knew the answer. His best friend was smiling for him. Always thinking of others, ever selfless, this smile was an attempt to ease his pain. And he wasn’t even the one trapped.
At that moment his love for his partner grew tenfold. Nearly at the point of giving up, this smile gave him renewed energy to continue searching for a way in; for his partner, a way out.
Not knowing exactly where to start, he began to run. He ran around the perimeter once again and then once more for good measure. He double checked every seam, every crack and even every discoloration in hopes of finding anything that might be a flaw in the construction – a weakness to exploit. He then tried a new approach and climbed the outcroppings that surrounded the place of his partner’s imprisonment in hopes of finding a way in from above. Nothing. At long last he tried screaming. Screaming for help as much as out of frustration.
That was when the horn sounded. His heart started to race. What did it mean? Was something worse about to befall his friend beyond this confinement?
He raced back to the walls and threw his entire body against them as he looked inside to see what horror might be next. To his surprise, a portion of the barrier just off to his left suddenly swung open and his partner’s escape was unbelievably within reach. As his role model headed for the opening he did the same, moving as fast as his little legs would take him, hoping that it didn’t close before they got there.
He rapidly turned the corner and the opening yawned large before him. About to throw his body down in sacrifice should it begin to close, he pulled up short just as his partner calmly stepped through the gap, a happy smile on his face as if he didn’t have a care in the world.
He ran head first into his friend’s arms and hugged him with all his might. They were together again at last.
“Were you watching me ice skate?” his older brother asked.
“I watch you skate,” was all he could think to say, too happy to even care what skating was.
From above in the stands, their veteran leader looked on as he wiped a single tear from his eye.