The right question – a short story about a curious person.

I’ve had a difficult week. Someone I love has been away, and I miss them. I need their help to make important decisions. There are weeks when life sucks the creativity out of you.

I was moaning to a colleague who said: ‘Why don’t you go and see Mark?’ 
‘Mark?’
‘Yes the guy in the top floor in Marketing, with an office overlooking the conical hill behind our block”

I went up several f’lights of stairs and found a door with a brass plate with ‘Mark” engraved on it, and knocked.
‘Come in. Sit down.’ A thin man dressed in a black suit,  glanced round from his laptop, pressed a key and stood up.  His body was bent over as if he had been seated for a long time. His long legs ended in a pair of highly polished shoes with rounded toe caps. 
‘What can I do for you…?’
‘Tricia. I’m Tricia, from Children’s literature.
‘Ah yes, a difficult area of work.’
‘I’ve lost my creativity. I have to complete a children’s story each week and I’m completely stuck. What shall I do?’
‘Oh, there’s nothing you can do. I will give you a question.’ He spoke as though he was offering a sweet or an ice cream. A question was no help but I didn’t want to be rude.
‘Here it is.’ He leaned towards me, his body elongating in a curve as he handed me a piece of paper.
‘Is that all?’ I asked and he nodded. I hurried out, thankful to get away from such an odd person.
I read the question as I went down the stairs.
‘What has made you feel connected to God this week?’ Nothing, nothing at all. It’s been a dreary, miserable week. Except, I did hear a song that made me pause. How did it go? ‘There’s a time for us.’ I looked up the snatch of words on my phone and found an audio file. It was an old song but this time it had a profound effect. I collapsed on the stairs; sobs seemed wrenched out of me. The grief, the loneliness I had pushed down were all expressed in the words and music. When the tears dried a children’s story popped into my head.
I rushed back upstairs to thank Mark, but the door with the brass plate had gone. There was just a window looking out onto a conical hill.

This story is written in response to the https://fiveminutefriday.com/2019/06/20/fmf-writing-prompt-link-up-question/


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