His daughter replied glumly: “I don't believe in Jesus. I still believe in God, though - don't know whether He's all good and omipotent... " She looked anxiously at her father to see what effect her blasphemous words had had on the Vicar of Priors Marston. In the moonlight, she could discern a resigned expression on his face. He seemed indifferent to what she'd said.
"Let's be angels, Papa – let's not be us any more – let's leave this place and fly away and come into people's lives and bring them cheer - help them forget their sorrows...”
“What in heavens possessed you to say such a thing, girl? I help in practical ways; as a vicar, I am Jesus's intermediary here.”
“Well, neither you nor Jesus could save Matthew or Timmy or Mama...”
Reverend Whyteside looked grim. He knew Constance was absolutely right. He'd gone over this night after night after night. And that sermon - he'd surely earned God's wrath - assuming God was indeed a loving God. And if He was not a loving God - should he be serving Him?
At half past four, the eastern sky was decidedly brighter; quarter of an hour later a magnificent strip of orange-red expanded before them along the horizon. They stood still and watched. Birdsong accompanied this marvel, and their ancestors, born of the same Warwickshire earth and returned to it century after century would also have felt the unison.
The sun rose gloriously over the hill above Staverton. It touched more and more of the small clouds that had spread in from the west with pink pastel hues before flooding the sky with brightness and warmth, enhanced by the smell of the fecund soil under their feet. The both felt overwhelmed by a sense of total elation of the senses; this is what it was to be alive!
“When our plans and are hopes are shattered, we shouldn't dwell on them; we should not dwell on our loss, we should just live for moments of beauty such as these, moments that allow our spirit to overcome the sadness,” said Constance suddenly, with a look of wild abandon.
The vicar pondered his daughter's words, and gestured to her that she should continue to develop her thoughts.
"These moments transcend the grief, the everyday pain of what often seems like a futile existence. If you can't make plans any more, then let us make the most of our time living for moments of joy, such as this one, Papa," said Constance, hugging him around the shoulder.
“I shall have to alter Sunday's sermon accordingly!” replied the Reverend Whyteside, allowing a trace of a smile to cross his lips.
“What did Jesus have to say about this?” she asked.
“I can't say that I know,” he answered.
This time last year:
Beat this for a snowy winter!
This time two years ago:
Poland's most popular outergarments
This time three years ago:
The Frost Gods return