Story Start—’Tired Old Man’

He walks alone through a small town on a bitter cold night in January. He marches slowly down the sidewalk, dragging one leg, pulling a luggage cart full of objects that look just as worn out and ready to die as he does.

He wears a dingy wool cap over oily, lifeless, dirty blond and grey specked hair. Strands of his beard stick out sideways, seemingly unaffected by gravity. He wears the standard uniform of the street native. Overcoat. Ripped pants, couple sizes too big. Fingerless gloves, used to be one color, now several. Tired old work boots.

Back when he was a young man, in the time when Jesus walked the earth, he used to enjoy the company of people. He’d sit for hours and talk story, laughing so loud people a quarter mile away would ask him the next day what was so funny.

Those days are long gone. After two thousand plus years life has lost a little of its succor, its zest, its willingness for him to be part of it. Which is why he has to find the boy, his final payment for freedom from this earthly cage, one last job before he can finally feel the welcome embrace of death’s warm hands.

Alright, your turn! Who is this guy? Where’s he at? What’s his mission? Who’s the boy (or girl, or dog, or whatever)? I’ve got my theories, but I’d love to hear yours.

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