This is the beginning of a short story I am writing about a man who finds his Lord.
Aiden Palmer had never believed in God, as his family did. The Palmer’s are staunch Christians and the cornerstone of life in Manderton. It wasn’t that he didn’t believe, Aiden’s doubts stemmed from a lack of proof, the faith his family had was never strong in Aiden. He prefers to believe in what he can see, feel and smell.
All that changed one day when his car broke down coming over the hills around the outskirts of the town. The day had been long and arduous, his work as a realtor was boring to him, but he had a knack for selling that brought the customers to his door and enough money to keep him in the life he enjoyed.
Aiden’s passion is classic motorcycles, and he was never happier than when he went to an auto-jumble show. He had the money to afford anything he liked, but he was wise enough to realize one day his fortunes would run out, so like the parable of the fatted calves. The more he made, the more he was able to save for the days when his charms ran out, and he needed to fall back on his savings.
His friends joked about his clothing; he could afford the best outfitter in the town to design his clothes, but he always bought from a thrift store to help those less fortunate than himself. He may be wealthy, but life had never been smooth for Aiden. All his life, Aiden needed to fight harder than anyone to stay in the “game,” while others had the money to back their projects, all Aiden had was his fading charm and a golden tongue to rely on for his way of life.
A comment he often heard was, “Why don’t you get smarter clothes, Aiden, that way you can get the ladies you deserve.”
His standard reply was, “If clothes win a lady, then I am not worth winning. I’d rather have a lady who wants me more than one who wants one for my appearance. After all, appearances can change, but the person remains.”
Aiden spent most of his spare time in his garage. If he wasn’t tinkering with the engines, he was ringing the local motorcycle clubs to see if there were any meeting going on that he could compete in over the weekend.
Racing never brought the money in. If Aiden got placed in the top five of the races, he could cover his costs. The money was not the draw as the business was running well as usual. The passion that drove him was being on the bike and feel free to ride.
It was returning from one meeting that his view on the Lord changed. He was returning late from a meeting at Mont St. Joseph when his van span on some spilled oil on the road.
He didn’t know how long he’d been out, but when he woke couldn’t see his hands in front of his face. He sat still for a short while as he attempted to recall what had happened, and how long he’d been unconscious. He glanced at his wrist to see what the time was, only to find that his eyes couldn’t focus on the watch face, as Aiden tried to envisage what had happened, he looked at his hands and to his horror he found he couldn’t see his fingers.
All Aiden could recall is that he had left the pub late, he’d had a beer with some of the riders from the meeting but nothing that should have caused him to crash his van. With no concept of day and night to guide him, Aiden had no idea if he’d been unconscious for a few minutes, or many hours.
It was now he began to curse that he worked alone. Aiden sat down slowly, trying to focus his mind on what he could piece together from the vague images of his calendar for the week he had in his office. Aiden’s mind when blank as he tried to focus on the office wall. “This blankness must be the onset of amnesia,” he thought, “I must stay awake as long as I can. I have no idea how badly I’m injured. I doubt I’ll be missed for days, if at all.”
As he sat thinking about the incident, and how he came to be where he was in his life; Aiden noticed his vision getting more blurry by the minute. He cried to the stars, not expecting a reply, “Oh Lord, why have you punished so on this day? What have I done to deserve this punishment? I realize I never acknowledged your existence, but that was because I had no proof. If I’d had evidence, I could have had the belief to have faith in you.”
Sitting by the roadside, in the darkness, Aiden thought, “This isn’t going to do anything. I’ll need to get walking but which way and how far?”
Rising slowly, Aiden felt his way along the hedgerows. He had no idea which way he was heading, or how long he’d be walking before someone found him. Then a thought hit him, “If I can’t see the traffic, and it’s dark, how will the vehicles notice me?” Trembling with fear, he slowly edged along the roadside fearing to be hit at any moment. Aiden walked for what to him seemed like hours and with no signs of traffic, or sounds of people in the distance he stopped to try to get some direction for his location; as he listened, the only sound he could hear was the sound of the waves crashing on some rocks nearby.
Aiden stopped walking and thought, “If I can hear the sea, that means I am not far from the edge of the road; if my memory is correct. I’ll need to be very careful from here. My only guide is my failing memory of the map on the wall in my office; I wish I could focus on an image and use it as a guide.”
He stopped when he felt a scratch from a thorn that crossed his path, as Aiden sucked the blood, he heard a voice say, “Fear not, Aiden, for I shall be your guide from now until you are safe.”
Aiden shook his head and thought, “I’m losing my mind now, hearing voices, what next?”
The voice replied, “You are not losing your mind, my son, you are finding your way home to me. My actions shall be the proof you seek of my existence.”
“Lord, if it is you, why do you choose this time to come to me?”
“I came to you now because you asked for guidance that I exist. You are badly hurt and dazed. You may survive the night ahead, but without help, you would probably not get far as you are bleeding severely. I come to you as not only a guide but as a friend in need. You didn’t need evidence I exist, what you needed is proof that you have faith in me. Since your childhood, you have sought approval and found none among your peers, that is why you chose to lead a solitary life. I can see what is in your heart, Aiden. I see sorrow and pain for the people, the pets and the life you have lost. I can see a new future for you. A future that holds many fortunes, not the riches of men that many crave, but the riches of the soul. If you wish to travel this path we can walk together.”
“And if I chose not to follow your path, would you leave me here alone?”
“No. I wouldn’t; I will lead you to safety and let you choose the path you wish to follow. One good man is worth ten pressed soldiers, Aiden.”
“My father used to say that to me a lot; I never put a lot of thought into the old sayings when I was young. I think things have changed a lot since then, not only with age but with experiences in life.”
The voice of the Lord went on, “The main thing to do now is to get you to safety, after that the choice is yours, Aiden. Not far from here is a house, from where the owners can contact a hospital. As you said, your vision is blurry, and you are holding your head which could mean either a migraine from the fall or a head injury. You need to put what faith you had in me to the test; the road is dark ahead, and only I can see the way for you.”
“Lord, I am in your hands, please take me to safety.”
The rest of the story can be followed n this link https://disqus.com/home/discussion/channel-indieworld/god_walks_these_dark_hills/