The Road Less Travelled

He’d been walking for some time, the path had been long and straight and clear and so far it had taken him exactly where he wanted to go. Now, however, things were different. The path he’d been on continued off into the distance, still straight, still clear, but now there was a second path that branched off from it.

The second path was slightly overgrown and, try as he might, he just couldn’t see where it was going. He could see that in the distance it entered the woods, where the trees were at their densest, and so the path’s ultimate destination was obscured to him. The path was broken up and rocky in places, he could see that if he chose to follow it, he’d have to watch his step. He imagined that if it got worse up ahead he would surely trip and stumble at times, and possibly fall into the mud.

He looked back up the original path. It seemed comforting, safe, he knew where it went and he knew he’d have no trouble getting there. It was well paved, and he could tell that many had followed this path before him. The new path, on the other hand, was clearly rarely used.

He stood and thought awhile. Why was he even thinking about following this new path? It wasn’t the way he’d planned to go when he set out, and he might get lost.

He looked again at the original path. He looked ahead as far as he could see, and he looked off into the distance behind him. Everything along the path was the same. The same trees, the same grass, the same benches, the same neatly paved path. He wondered again what lay along this new path, he strained to see past the dense foliage but he could not.

He took a step onto the new path, hoping to catch a glimpse of what lay beyond the trees, but it was no good. He took another, and then another, catching tantalising glimpses of he knew not what through ever moving leaves and branches. Maybe he could just go to the edge of the woods and see what was there and then go back…

He turned around and looked back the way he’d come…

There was only one path.

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Ian Sharman
Ian is a freelance writer and artist. He founded Orang Utan Comics Studio with Peter Rogers in 2006, writes for their Eagle Award Nominated anthology Eleventh Hour and regularly inks for Panini’s Marvel Heroes comic.
Ian Sharman

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