Heart Stone was in the path so people would slow pace as they neared Sentinel Rock.
It was a caution.
And a point of respect.
One did not pass by without giving Sentinel Rock at least that much in respect, and almost all knew better than to try and trick the ancients.
Oh, you could gallop past without a care in the world, but care was sure to catch up with you soon enough: A broken foot, a crack in your mount’s hoof, an ache that kept you up at night and led to carelessness the next day or the one after.
Heart Stone was there for a reason, and only fools rushed in.
Fools like him.
He should have known better.
Now he nursed a bee sting in a place no bee should sting, and he had no one to blame but himself for the carelessness and the ensuing punishment.
He told no one. Ashamed at his foolery.
Tossing in distress upon his pallet he pledged to pay his respect the very next day, and to bring with him an offering. He should have known.
Sentinel Rock saw everything, and Heart Stone kept no secrets. Stone spoke to stone.
On the other side of the hut his grandmother placed her hand upon the rock wall’s foundation and sighed in quiet realization. It was the price of youth.
Long ago she, too, had to learn to heed the ancient’s lessons and slow her pace to match. Her crooked wrist still carried her own scars of hard earned wisdom.
For Sue Vincent’s Write Photo
Photo: Sue Vincent