Setting Out Into the Rising Sun

© 2000 by Els 'Cygny' Rombaut

This page was last modified: 2000/02/22

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The little boy was looking over the snowcovered land in which he was born. His mother told him that they were leaving. He didn't want to leave. The icy white of his homeland meant security. He had seen pictures of the land they were going to. There were tall buildings and lots of cars and people who looked very strange to him. Mama said they were going to find his papa. But papa was one of those strange looking people. He didn't need to find his papa, he only needed mama.

He looked back at the cottage he had lived in his whole life. His mama was making their suitcase. For a moment he thought of running away. She wouldn't notice until she had finished packing and he wouldn't come back before nightfall. By then it would be too late to catch the ship and they would stay in Siberia for at least another month.

But then he remembered mama saying that she had used all of her savings to pay for the tickets. If they didn't leave, they would have lost their money. Mama would be very sad. He couldn't do that. He decided to try and make the best of it and went to help her.

The woman in the cottage looked up as her son entered. She looked at him with loving eyes. Anyone who saw them together, immediately noticed they were mother and son. They both had the same blond hair and bright blue eyes. The woman laughed at her son and asked him to go get his favourite toy. She had almost finished packing and they would leave in a couple of minutes.

Hyoga went to his bed and looked at the few toys he had. He decided to take the little stuffed penguin his mother had made him. He turned to face his mother and saw her looking around the cabin with a sad smile. She smiled at him and took him by the hand.

"Let's go darling. It's time to face our destiny. We can't hide forever." Hyoga frowned at these words and when she saw it, she said "You will understand one day, son. You will remember and understand."

They walked to the village nearby. The people knew they were leaving and most of them had come to say goodbye. The woman had never socialised with them but the boy had always been very nice and talkative. They never saw him without a smile on his face. Until now. It was obvious he didn't want to leave. But the woman was his mother so there was nothing anyone could do.

Hyoga and his mama took the bus that passed once a week to go to the town where they would go aboard the ship. By the time they got there, Hyoga had forgotten all about his fears because there was so much to be seen. The landscape was still white but they encountered lots of different people and villages on their way to town. His mama looked more cheerful now than she did a couple of hours ago. She seemed to have calmed down knowing they were finally on their way.

To Hyoga the ship looked like a big black sea-creature. Suddenly the fear caught him again. He grabbed his stuffed penguin, pressed it against him and said "I don't want to go in there. Mama, please don't go. It will eat us. It's mean. Mama, please."

His mother looked shocked for a moment, but then she took him firmly by the hand and gently forced him to come with her. Hyoga didn't stop whispering that the ship would eat them until they were in their cabin. He just lay on the bed with tears in his eyes and staring at the ceiling. His mama stayed by his side until the ship left port and the boy was rocked to sleep by the gentle moving of the ship.

She cast a last glance at him and then left to fetch something to eat. She didn't feel too comfortable about leaving their homeland either, but her sons future could better be taking care of by his father. She took hold of the crucifix that was hanging around her neck and immediately felt comforted. Everything would be allright. She had to keep faith in God. If she did, he would look after her and Hyoga.

A couple of days went by and Hyoga calmed down a bit. He didn't say anything about the ship anymore but he wasn't the joyful boy he was in Russia. When his mama asked him what was wrong he just shook his head and smiled sadly. She was starting to worry if she had made the right choice. She took the crucifix in her hand again and suddenly it struck her. Hyoga didn't have much to believe in for the moment. All the things that he thought of as safe, were taken away from him, his home, the people he had come to know and like, even the snow. The captain had announced this morning that it was the last day that they were travelling amongst icebergs. They would leave the Arctic seas tomorrow.

"Hyoga, come here, my darling."

"Yes, mama."

"Look at this. I had this crucifix from my mother. I have brought you up as a Christian so I want you to have it now. I know that this journey is difficult for you but you have to keep your faith. I want you to take this in your hand every time you're feeling sad or alone. It will help you through everything. I want you to think of how God loves you when you look at it. And you should also remember that my thoughts will always be with you."

"But mama, what's wrong?"

"Nothing's wrong darling, I just thought you needed some comforting. And I want you to know that I'm doing this for your own good."

Hyoga looked at the crucifix in his hand and then to his mother. She had closed her eyes and was saying a prayer. Hyoga thought that if she was with him, that he would never be afraid again. And when she looked at him again, he gave her his brightest smile.

They looked together at the sunset with faith in the future.

The End

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