The man lit a torch as he entered the dark musty room, unsure of what he would find after such a long time away. His previous adventures in this space had uncovered countless treasures, but he feared his absence had caused all to be forgotten and lost.

He trudged down the steep staircase into the earth’s underbelly, butterflies of eager anticipation fluttered in his stomach as he pressed forward to see what he might find.

The torch cast deep shadows along the walls, highlighting ancient texts scrawled throughout the cavernous interior. The man ran his fingers along the etched lettering, feeling the words come alive with his fingers as he considered the times in which they were written. Tales of life, the future, the past, and hopes long forgotten surrounded him as a reminder of those historic days when this prosaic playground was still shiny and new.

The man paused, noting a statue placed directly in the center of it all. He hastened his pace to reach the statue and pursed his lips to blow away the layers of dust covering the hall’s centerpiece. He smiled, knowing that although the statue bore his face, it was the faces of the thousands who would visit here who should have the memorials built in their images.

And so it was, with a conflicted grin, the man placed the first of the explosive charges at the base of the statue. He placed an additional five throughout the hall, questioning whether he truly wanted to follow through with his plan. He reminded himself that although the history of the place may have meant something to him, and perhaps would be remembered by some of those who had previously visited, the clearing of the old to make way for the new would allow for so much more.

After delicately placing the final package and carefully connecting the red and black wires which coursed their way back to the cave’s entrance, he gave one final look around, wondering whether or not he had the right to destroy everything he had once held dear, even if his intention was to build something far grander.

Once he had further dedicated himself to the task, he followed the cables back to the surface, took one deep breath, and flipped the switch, causing everything to burst into flames as the walls came crumbling to the ground.

As the dust settled, he reentered the cave, now nothing more than an empty space with blanks walls. He took out his tools, walked to the closest wall, and returned to work, smiling broadly as he prepared to bring his next story to the world.


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