No Changes

                                             Joe peered across the chasm, 6 feet he thought. The sun

                                             blazed; Joe felt alive. Leaping he landed at the base of the

                                             cliff. He began to climb, Selain’s words echoed in his head, as

                                             hand and footholds passed beneath him.

                                             “I love what we have, but it just doesn’t feel complete, solid,

                                             God! I don’t know.”

                                             Reaching the top, Joe scanned the canyon.

                                             “I love being with you Sel, I like our life, I feel grounded, connected. What am I missing here?”

Reaching the top of this small cliff, the warmup, the terrain, broad and flat, the next cliff-face 2 miles ahead, he stepped out briskly.

“We want children right. Well Joe, shouldn’t it be more formal, legal, connected for that.”


The ground began to rise.

“What would change?” he asked.

“Nothing, other than all the legal, tax stuff, you know,” replied Sel.

Arriving, he plotted his course, rearranged his gear, and began to crank.

“What would change?” Nothing, as he climbed nothing repeated in his head; nothing.

Reaching a set of jugs, he slipped into a chimney and climbed.

Change that changes nothing, how does that work. Sticking his right hand into a Fissure, swinging his left foot to a foothold, digging his left fingers into the fissure he began jamming to the top.


Smiling he rolled out flat face up on the rocky ground atop the cliff.

“I love you Sel. Have an awesome flight. I want you in my life feeling like I do.”

Sitting up he pulled the pack off, the water and sandwich were satisfying, he retrieved a box from the pack and opened it. The diamond and gold gleamed brightly in the afternoon sun. No change at all, he smiled.

Copyright: T. Mark Mangum, 2020. All rights reserved. No part of my story may be copied, reprinted, or published without the written consent of the writer.

T. Mark Mangum, is the product of the 60s and 70s, his imagination, wonder, thoughts, and ponderings, emboldened by Star Trek, Star Wars, Conan the Barbarian, and The Hobbit. He loves a good story and hopes you will love reading my stories. Veteran, Father, TTRPG, and board Game Junkie. He spent 20 years in the United States Army, another 10 working for the government, before realizing he should write.

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