Sunday, March 23, 2008


      “The size of this chair is very important, Mr. Sequioa.”

         I stared down at the kindergarten-sized chair that he’s made. The place was freezing, lots of smoke.

                 “Next year, we’ll be talking about the size of this chair.  Everyone will be sitting in these things.  But I don’t want to talk about that now.  Not when we have so much to discuss.”

                 “What are we supposed to be discussing, exactly?” I asked.  “Why am I here, in this place?”

         The chairmaker scratched his beard, a beard he hadn’t had two seconds ago.

                 “Do I look familiar to you?” he asked.

                 “Um, no.”

         He pulled off the new beard, blood trickling off of his splotchy chin.

                 “What about now?” he inquired.

         I stared at him.  Nothing.

                 “I was a friend of your grandfather’s.  We fought together,” he continued.  “First Clean Six.  I met you when you were seven.  We had this exact same conversation about the chair.  I gave you one of those candies?  Hot Rocks?  It was a Wednesday.”

         He placed the beard near his chin, it attached itself and the bleeding stopped.

                 “I’m sorry,” I said, “I don’t . . .”

                 “We’ll meet again in a month.  Don’t worry.  But I won’t look like this.  I won’t even be me.  But you’ll know who I am then.”

         The smoke started to clear.

                 “Try out the chair, Mr. Sequioa.  I think you’ll find it’s a good fit for you.”

         The chairmaker dissipated with the smoke and I was left standing there, alone.  I walked over to the chair and on the back of it was the word “Whetstone.” 

         I immediately woke up.  The name stayed in my head for days.




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