Every gay child faces a quest. It usually begins with a terrifying intimation, something grasped in secret, overheard clandestinely, or dreamed in the night.
Artabus’s quest was to find out a tale from the mythic past to use as his valedictory project.
“Who are Ebinar and Garicea?” Noamus asked.
“I have not found out yet,” Artabus confessed.
Noamus was surprised and concerned, by turns. “Why did you choose them to write about?”
“Oh, Master, I did not choose them, they chose me,” Artabus explained with a confident nod of his blond head. He looked at the monk to be sure the older man had understood this profound fact, a fact that meant a great deal more to the boy than he could say.
Noamus agreed to accompany Artabus on the quest for a story, the importance of which neither of them knew. They had to face geological perils, mythic mysteries, and a murderous bandit gang. The monk and the boy took turns supporting and rescuing one another, helped by a little terrier and a cloister of monks who remembered Ebinar and Garicea in an annual pageant that nearly everyone had forgotten about.
“…Ebinar and Garicea have been dead a long, long time,” Artabus repeated. “I must find the story before it is too late.”
“Many stories are lost,” the monk conjectured. “Some are never even told or thought into stories. They died before they were born.”
“This one must not be lost,” Artabus declared.
Noamus was prepared to let it go at that, but Artabus added, “I must have this story in order to live.”
Noamus gasped at the immensity of this notion from such a youngster.
If you would like to read the story of the quest for a story, just click on this link The Beloved of Saint Atrocious or find it under the "Stories" link on the main homepage. It is 24 pages long, in case you are wondering.
Rev. Dr. Kenneth Dobson posts his weekly reflections on this blog.