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The Omniscient Man

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He knew everything! Although he was barely in his prime of life, leading the city for many years and no one can challenge his personal charm, determination, especially speech clarity and force. He turn people as wanted, most bitter opponents converted in leather gloves with his arguments and cutting dithyrambs that he spoke from the rostrum.

He felt, however, that he tired and gathered around him scamps whose only purpose was to thrive… He knew he had to do something, and then, one morning, he was sure he had found the solution. Will retire for a while, he will not appear in public, will abandon public office and will let to others the power. He was sure that, this way, human ballast that had formed around him will disappear, that people, after a few months or a year, will beg him to come back, they will lack his firmness, his brilliant speech, his charismatic way of being…

So he retired, despite all protests of his camarilla. His house was one of the most comfortable in the city, the servants pulled the shutters and  caressed him, for weeks, with fine wines, exotic massage oils, fine food, frequent hot and cold baths, rejecting most requests to visit most of the former approach. He just received the ones that brought fresh news from the city, providing the necessary data for his proper analysis of the course of events.

He wrote endless scrolls with lyrics that until then he did not have the courage to write. When sipping wine seasoned with rare spices he imagined how it will be when he returns…

Days and seasons passed, slowly but sure, he was caught in a torpor in home comfort and life softness, an the endearments of the clever maids with smooth skin and almond-shaped and blue sky eyes. Visitors lessened and soon a single one remaining to come regularly to bring news about how things work. It was the former cloakroom attendant of the group, the man that made ​​fires in winter and airy the rooms… Finally, believing that enough time had passed since he had retired, and it is time to resurface and reclaim the city, he written his speech by candlelight, because window shutters were not open again!

Impressed by the force of the discourse, he knew that his return will be a triumph. So, in a beautiful summer morning, he decided to go out and, accompanied only by the former cloakroom attendant, out the gates of the house. People began to point at him and here and there he heard the cheers. He didn’t let to be seen his smile of satisfaction that had crept to the world only through his metallic glowing eyes. He went to the Agora and climbed the rostrum when the crowd was full. Murmurs ceased, and there was silence, even if they feel a thrill when people approached, because they had not forgotten him. He heard the applause, then cheers …

His speech had gone in crescendo, knowing that absolutely everyone who heard him were captivated. The sun climbed in the sky and the heat began to overwhelm him. He realized that he lost the training to stand up and speak in the open air. that his back hurts, because he din not spent so much time standing for a long time. The sweat began to flow back through the hair, the face; he felt warm dripping rivers on foot, making the sandals damp. Throat was dry and his words began to roar, and his eyes to disturb.

People from the last lines did not heard much and began to ask explanations from the best places. Rumor intimidate and perplex him. He lost the string of words, entangled and tried to resume the idea, but listeners, disappointed, began to leave until there remained only some kids who ate cherries and watched, curious, the man who was struggling to finish a speech. Finally, bored, after they finished the cherries, began to play catch-up, running to hide even after the speaker.

Disgusted, he stopped and wanted to go home. He looked for the cloakroom attendant, but he didn’t saw him anywhere

(Translated from aMorale, by Marius Cilibia)

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