The children played by the stream, babbling happily along as it always had done.

They played and laughed in the summer sun.

They moved under the shade of two lovely old elm trees that had stood vigil over generations of children, when they eventually got too hot.

But oh, what fun games they played!

James paddled in the brook, shouting happily as he found exotic treasures including a dinosaur fang (actually a cow molar), an Aztec coin (actually a rusted bottle top), and some beautiful stones!

Tilly played “Cowboys and Indians” with Max and Ben. Both boys had decided that she could be a cowboy, although there had been a brief discussion over whether or not there were any girls in India, initially.

Little Johnny was further on down the brook, building a little dam with pebbles and giggling when the current of the stream knocked it over. Half the fun was in the reassembly!

And there was so much to do and see!

Soon, Little Johnny was playing “Cowboys, Spacemen, and Indians” with the other children.

James had put forward the idea of adding spacemen into the equation, and the children had fun into the late afternoon.

The sun set into the reddish sky, and the evening children broke away.

They didn’t have far to go, and lived on the same street.

A five minute walk, perhaps.

The sun set on the bleached bones of the hiker that was rotting further down the stream. The skin had mostly left the corpulent body, but some still clung on.

And the moon came out, casting a dark light onto a world where the children played whilst the bodies decomposed.