C Clark Carbonera

A horror tale with a riddle, a simple question that is sometimes scary. There are people who don't even dare to do it, afraid of what they will hear in response. What about you? Dare to ask? Winning short story of the Monsters Challenge created by the Brazilian Embassy in 2020.

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Right in the center of that inhospitable and dreary region, with leaden sky and red clouds, there is a lake of crystalline water, where on the banks white lilies shudder by the simplest of breezes.

Everyone knows that region and that lake, but few dare to get there, even if the path is the shortest on any map, in any world.

It was after the shudder of one of the flowers that a young human found himself in those parts. Slender and bright-eyed, his chest vast and full of joy, he did not understand how that place could be so ugly and empty if there was only light and love inside of him. After all, isn't the world a reflection of ourselves?

He smiled gently and clicked his tongue, something was not right. And how did this wonderful lake of brilliant water ever exist in such a hostile place? How did these divine flowers sprout there, when everything else seemed lifeless? Bending over the lake to drink some water and relieve his dry throat, he brushed a lock of hair out of his eyes.

His hand stopped a few millimeters from the clean water when he faced his reflection and smiled. He touched the contours of his face with his finger. With each touch of the water, he felt a caress on his face, like a kiss from the rustling breezes. With each touch he remembered his life, the paths he walked, the choices he chose, the words he spoke. With each touch of pure water, the young human touched himself sweetly, almost in torpor. And with each touch he got closer and closer to what his eyes refused to see, since, with each touch, he remembered the mistakes he made.

Mistakes. Mistakes. Mistakes!

His core shuddered at that. Deep down, very deep down, he didn't want to get there. Better to close the eyes to stop seeing, better to move the hand away to stop touching. But the crystal waters were magical, some said, were demonic, others said. And the young human could not do either. His parched lips half-opened and his heart lost pace when he saw the lake's waters stir. Some bubbles appeared below and the bubbling increased when the eyes opened wide.

The petrified body heard fearfully the voice from the lake:

– Who am I?

A riddle?

– Who am I?

– Who are you?! – he wanted to shout.

– Who am I? – the bubbles repeated.

The young human's teary eyes watched the water slowly approach, until he fell into the lake.

The crystal waters licked at his entire body and the bubbles tickled him. He almost forgot his fear of earlier, soaked he was for that liquid pleasure. And taking this as a breach, the caressing bubbles took him deeper into the lake.

– Who am I?

The clean water became dense and dark with the deep bubbles swimming. The young human felt that he had fallen into a trap when he realized that he could not get away from the talking bubbles. His arms and legs beat and dusted through the dirty, muddy water, black and sticky seaweed clung to him without any care. His mouth fell open in a silent scream when one of the long seaweed surrounded his neck, like a necklace of dark omen.

– Who am I?

Demanded to know the bubbles.

– Who am I?

With eyes closed in fear, he shook his head and tried to get away from the seaweed and the bubbles, the deep black waters and the lake. The lake! He had to get out of that lake! It was in fact a demonic lake dressed up as divine!

And at that thought, the bubbles spoke louder and louder, the seaweed pulled him deeper and deeper. Again his lips parted.


The young man felt his heart beat more slowly, and a few tears mingled with the water lake. His arms and legs stopped struggling. The pounding of his heart began to play an old melody that he thought was no longer within him: mistakes...mistakes... mistakes... mistakes...

At those melancholy notes, the seaweed approached each piece of soft meat, and the bubbles took the body to the bottom of the cold lake, while they repeated softly in his ears:

– Who am I? who am I? who am I? who am I?

For those who looked at the lake of crystalline water surrounded by white lily that lived in that inhospitable and dreary region, with leaden sky and red clouds, perhaps they would feel a certain peace. For from the mirror that was the water, no shiver could be seen.

Unless their ears listened:

Who am I?

22 Septembre 2020 21:24:12 0 Rapport Incorporer Suivre l’histoire
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A propos de l’auteur

C Clark Carbonera “A utopia está lá no horizonte. Me aproximo dois passos, ela se afasta dois passos. Caminho dez passos e o horizonte corre dez passos. Por mais que eu caminhe, jamais alcançarei. Para que serve a utopia? Serve para isso: para que eu não deixe de caminhar.” Fã de carteirinha de Buffy - The Vampire Slayer.

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