The Art of War

I sit contemplating my next move, surrounded by the remnants and ruins of the Great War. Beads of sweat beginning to form on my brow, streams of day light flooding into a once tidy bedroom reflecting off mirrored butterflies, light hitting me causing me to shrink away and adjust my seating position

My mind beginning to work overtime,
playing various scenarios in my head, thinking about the consequence of each path i choose to take.

Deciding the best course of action is not going to be easy, the air thick with anticipation and a hint of vanilla ( note to self must buy more perfumed diffusers). a sudden tranquility comes over me.. A peace.. The kind I haven’t felt in a long time (well a couple of hours at least ), I let it wash over me allowing it to calm my nerves and focus my thoughts on my next move, bringing forth some wisdom from the greatest war strategist of all time Sun Tzu.

‘The supreme art of war is to subdue the enemy without fighting…’

I know now what I must do, I sit contemplating my move. Playing it over and over in my head (well for about 30 seconds) before I realise… I am no longer alone. I feel eyes upon me from afar, watching me, I close my eyes and listen.. Listening for movement, I hear soft steps, footsteps muffled by carpet. The steps are getting closer, eager to put my plan into action I restrain myself waiting for the opportune moment for I fear this may be my only chance. The only chance I will have to restore the balance in my kingdom, to return it to it’s former glory. To once again become the rightful ruler of my once beautiful and peaceful kingdom…

The steps begin to close in fast, the distances between the two of us closing. My eyes shut, my mind and body working as one to pounce and end this once and for all. The steps halt, she’s close and about to make her move I open my eyes to see her in mid swing, the fabled buttons the stuffed giraffe in hand coming close.

I react with lightning speed, grabbing her close and tickling her till she gives in and I am victorious! As my foe lays there smile on her face her cheeks glowing a bright red, I remind her of the terms of her surrender. The one who emerges victorious will be crowned king and will get to watch the iPad, the defeated will clean her room and put her toys and crayons away! I’m met with further laughter as my greatest foe rises in defiance and runs out the room ipad in hand !

I am left again surrounded by Lego and remnants of what was once a barbie doll… I think….

As I sit there I hear a faint giggle … I’m not alone …..

This is Mr J signing out

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The Art of War

Conversations with a 4 year old

Weaving in and out of the crowds of school children, i am lead, nay dragged by an eager mentalist trying to beat her older brother to the car.

As she hops from kerb to pavement into various parents walking in the opposite direction. I attempt to engage her in conversation, “so, how was your day…” I ask as she continues to hop, skip and jump her way to the car. Oblivious to the various obstacles and people in her path, but she’s too focused to get to the car to give me a coherent answer.

I load them up in the car, strap them in and set off on our journey home. Whilst in the car, she promptly empties her school book bag and shows me the book we will inevitably be reading later that night. I try once again to get her to tell me about her day “so… My young mentalist, what did you eat during lunch? Bugs? With a side of monkey brain?” Queue some hysterical laughter ending with a shrug of the shoulders and a “I can’t remember?”. “What?!” I respond incredulously “how can you not remember??” At this point she stays silent looking out the window, as I verbally prod and poke for attention she gives me the old “I don’t want to talk to you anymore daddy… I’m thinking…” With that we drive the rest of the way home in silence (which takes around 5 minutes).

We get home, I let her out of her seat and she skips to the front door, swiftly followed by myself and her brother. As I open the door I ask “would you like a quick snack my dear mentalist? Some fruit? Lobster? A yoghurt maybe?” She looks at me with those puppy dog eyes tilts her head to the side to complete the effect and asks innocently “can I watch my ipad?” I give her my best ‘oh hell no!’ look. Which promptly results with the mentalist stamping into her room with a scowl on her face. Apparently (so sayeth the mentalist while crawling into her pop up castle) I never let her do anything she wants, nor do I ever let her watch anything she wants to watch…

I wait outside the castle patiently waiting to be invited in, she pops her head out and advises I should knock. So I oblige and I am invited in, not the most spacious of places I make myself comfortable. “Sooo… Do you come here often?” She giggles and I know I’m forgiven, so we sit, we drink imaginary tea and eat imaginary cupcakes. And finally we talk about school, what she’s learnt, new rhymes she’s picked up and what her friends have been doing.

This is nice I think.. As she talks about her recent painting endeavours, showing me her once white tshirt now covered in blue paint. But it’s at this point I can no longer feel my knees or my legs, I need to prep dinner I think and she needs to be fed a snack “so tell me again, what did you eat at school?” I’m met with a frown, crossed arms and a subtle response of “I’m thinking daddy…”, “okay well il leave you to it then my dear mental one ” as I crawl for the exit. “No daddy let me finish thinking ….” I sit reluctantly as I watch her think, dolls in hand having a tea party. I think to myself (as I try and retain feeling in my legs) whether I’d have to do the same again tomorrow, and how this castle ain’t big enough for the both of us…

This is Mr J signing out

Tweet:@quest2publish


Conversations with a 4 year old