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All events, characters, and places are fictional.
The medieval barn didn’t realise the importance of its floor.
Approximate length 300 words.
The old barn had been built on an ancient site used by a secret spiritual movement that was born in the early medieval period when rival religions slaughtered each other for domination of the population. The movement had its roots in the Bronze Age when the power of standing stones and the celebration of celestial events were foremost in the minds of men. They realised that by focussing their energies they could help to prevent terrible human inspired tragedies.
The barn builders had used the old flagstone floor of the crumbling chapel and added their threshing floors, and a magnificent roof, a unique example of the earliest medieval barn in Europe. When a terrible human conflict was perceived, the movement had continued to worship in the old chapel even when its walls were crumbling. Their efforts had not been in vain, though some conflicts were too powerful even for their spiritual power. Of course those conflicts they had averted went unknown, the group did not prophesy or boast about their successes.
They were aware of the impending crisis, it was imperative the group was assembled with as many members as soon as possible. Arrangements were cancelled, urgent leaves of absence from workplaces arranged and flights from every continent booked. They booked the barn for a private event and the group assembled. The great doors were opened and they filed in.
To their horror they found their flagstone floor was now covered in concrete. The barn was now used for weddings and functions and of course for ‘Health and Safety Reasons’, the original floor had been covered over.
Their very success was dependent on focussing their energies, entailing each member standing on their individual designated flagstone. They tried, but knew that even with the greatest gathering they had ever assembled, because their precious flagstones were hidden or gone, their combined energies were almost certain to fail.
The alarm sounded, the radar screen was filled with tracks of the incoming missiles and the hands stretched out. Both keys were turned to reveal the red button. The code was entered, the button pressed and thermonuclear World War Three commenced.
Copyright Adrian K Kerton 2018