When it was over, he told me to keep it. He said it wouldn’t matter whether we took it or left it, and that I was the rightful owner, anyway. I, being not half as dimwitted as the general population liked to believe, refused. He was angry, I could tell, but it didn’t make a difference. This miracle belonged to the people. It wouldn’t be fair of me to take it for myself. That wasn’t why I had created it.
But, despite my intentions, the fountain was lost. Its carefully cleared entrance was once more overgrown with ivy and weeds, and the path we had so painstakingly outlined was disused and forgotten. The world either didn’t want this gift, or did not believe it truly existed. But still, some hint of the tale was left behind with those we trusted. And that story morphed, and grew, until it was so fantastical that it was more myth than fact. The spring became a fountain, ancient and beautiful as it was powerful, and its creators the stuff of legend. Reality was lost, and with it went the hope that I had once believed in.
But still, there is a chance. The world has a way of working things out to how they are meant to be, and I am thoroughly convinced of what that is, in this situation. The old trails must be walked again, the growth removed from the mouth of the cave. It is absolutely imperative that the fountain of youth, as it is now known, be rediscovered. Because the world needs hope, and right now, it’s in short supply.