Once and Future

Aaron Meacham
2 min readJan 12, 2020
Photo: Bonnie Moreland // Flickr

“I saw it!” The boy breathed heavy from his time underwater and the ferocity of the vision he’d witnessed. “Just as Father said, I saw myself — as a man — sitting on the throne.”

“So that’s why the lake is walled-off from the people.” The girl retreated from the water’s edge.

The boy peered into the lake. “Father said the power of the lake is our right as kings.” He gazed deep into his reflection, smoothing his dripping hair.

“What else did you see?”

The boy’s voice was distant. “I saw the great accomplishments I would make for the kingdom.”

The girl’s eyes sparkled. “Did we end the famine? Cure the plague that’s been killing our people?”

His mind flashed with fiery visions — a mighty warrior king conquering distant lands and foreign peoples. “I brought order to the chaos.”

“And was I in your vision, brother? Was I part of your accomplishments?”

The boy knelt at the water’s edge. “Yes.” As he washed his face, his hand palmed a nearby stone. “The lake showed me your part in my destiny.”

Blood streamed from the wound on her head as the girl staggered back toward the castle. She did not look back at her brother’s body, facedown on the lake’s surface. She forced the thoughts out of her mind about what the lake might have shown her had she peered beneath its waters.

Her thoughts focused instead on the application of what she had learned today on making a better tomorrow.



Aaron Meacham

My name anagrams to “a man becomes.” I love movies and Kurt Vonnegut. I don’t understand how anagrams work.