The gardener walked into their lives bright and sharp. Her need was covered by a ready smile. She came from a house with walls that echoed loneliness. On the very first day, her eyes were drawn to the little flower in the corner of the garden. Its beauty was in its simplicity. The gardener’s jealousy was already born. She watched it every day. It moved to the breeze and reached for the sunshine. The flower did not complain about the dark, the wind or the cold. Its roots had strength unseen.
The little flower was called Amira. She was guarded by Farkas, the garden spirit. Farkas loved Amira most of all the garden residents. However, he was wounded. He had lived many lives and carried the damage inside himself. He, often, went away and they would not see him for long periods. Sometimes, Farkas would sit near Amira. He would then remember the things that he rarely let himself remember. He would rest there until the wind called him away again.
The gardener watched it all and her loathing grew darker. How can the little flower have such a hold over the garden spirit’s heart? she thought. One morning, before the rising light had given its blessing to the day, the gardener, sick with her own longing, left her bed and killed the little flower. Now, Farkas will learn to love me. He will come to look at me and feel alive. He will protect me instead of the pathetic, dead flower.
When Farkas next returned, he went to greet Amira. He had missed his sweet friend. His eyes filled with rage when he saw that his little love was gone. He knew instantly what had happened and stormed to the gardener with fire and death in his breath. The gardener was frightened.
“I only wanted you to love me,” she said.
“You cannot kill another being and then claim their spirit as your own. I despise you,” Farkas spat at her. Still, he let her stay in the garden. She reminded him that he hated life. He wanted to hate life.
In spite of Farkas’s disgust of her, the gardener still longed for him. She waited for his return but the absences became longer until he barely returned at all. When he did return, he gave her nothing of his essence. The garden became a soulless place. It had no nourishment. One day, the gardener realised that if she stayed any longer, she too would be consumed by the slow death. And so, she left. She did not say goodbye. She did not wish to prolong the pain.
The garden was very still. A gentle breeze moved through the silent trees. It stirred the long, dry grass. A lone bird landed on a high branch. Surprisingly, it stayed there. Farkas was far away but he sensed that something had changed. He could feel a quickening movement in his soul. He returned to the garden and looked around. Not much was alive. Nevertheless, there was a subtle, sweet scent that had not been there before. In the place where the little flower had once lived, a tiny seed had sprouted and was holding onto both earth and air with all its might. It was willing itself to grow into a strong and beautiful flower once again. It looked so fragile. Fragility is the mask of mastery.
“I will stay here. The garden needs me,” Farkas called to the distant wind.