Prologue

Life is a funny thing. Each day we rise, we encounter a sea of faces—some recognizable, some not; a symphony of sound—both melodious and cacophonous; a torrent of information; and sway between emotions like a sailboat riding waves. Through this process—the act of living—memories are made. What, then, separates the memorable from the mundane? What allows certain occurrences to tether themselves to our minds and hearts while others slip away, forever lost to the ages? There is no answer…merely a host of possibilities…

Do we have control; can we pick and choose what we remember, what we deem significant? Or, are we simply reactionary…the power of the memory directly related to its initial emotional response? Both theories, it can be argued, are correct.

Do we have control? One may dream the grandest dream only to have it burn away in the early morning light. One may hope to cling to such sweetness for all eternity, yet its beauty is matched only by its transience. Such is the cruelty of mortality… of imperfection. Though we may aspire to hold every name, every thought, every experience deep within ourselves, we cannot…

Do our emotions—our innermost feelings and desires—allow us to limn a more detailed recollection? Even this school of thought is questionable. While emotions deepen our experiences, they rob us of our objectivity. Every wounded lover once knew affection. Guided by the heart, they forged ahead intrepidly, believing the depth of their romance would shield them from an unforgiving world. Some love affairs, however, like grains of sand, are washed away by the iniquities of life and vicissitudes of fate. How then, can what was experienced honestly be true? Those in love act irrationally, sometimes foolishly, out of passion. They betray logic and sense so their hearts may remain aloft. If such distinctions are made, can emotionally-charged memories be truly accurate?

While neither avenue is infallible, our memories form our perceptions of reality. We operate in this world based largely on experience. The past dictates the choices we make at present, which are the firmly grounded roots of the future. Needless to say, changing one's manner of approaching life is infinitely more difficult than simply changing one's circumstances. Details—all that surround and envelop us—can change in an instant. We, on the other hand, are rigid creatures of habit. Years of seeking comfort in familiarity make us so. In order for us to change, we must first abandon what we know to be true. Beliefs have a way of ensnaring reason and making fools of wise men. After all, what one knows to be true is held sacred above all else, even if it is flawed. The key to salvation is an open mind… regrettably, so few minds are open…

Sometimes, an event—an occurrence beyond imagination—is needed to open the eyes of those too lost to find their way. Once they realize the power they possess—the power they held all along—life as they know it ceases to be and becomes something greater…more meaningful. Because, for the first time, they are forced to face life headlong—to step into the unknown from the sanctity of the secure.

After all, life is a funny thing…

A/N: I opted in favor of the abstract for this prologue. Hopefully, it makes sense to you, as what is discussed here will matter later on down the line.

I have been itching to start a new multichapter story, but am torn as I also have aspirations to begin an original story of my own. Because of these inclinations, and the fact that—between my three jobs—I am working around sixty hours a week, I implore you to be patient with me, as time to write is scant (Unfortuantely, I am not as prolific as my esteemed colleague, TheForceIsStrongWithThisOne.)

As far as where this is headed? Well, it will be a departure from Collateral Damage. My goal for this effort is to be humorous yet touching all the same.

Hopefully, this has intrigued you enough and inspired enough curiosity to warrant a second look later on down the line…

Until then, my friends…