One day, two best friends were walking in the park. One of them was Flaubert and he was a very talented flutist. He would participate to all the local contests and would also perform in the school where he was learning. The other one was Tom and he was just an ordinary boy but very fascinated about math. This was his favorite object.
“Isn`t this wonderful, Tom? Everything is so beautiful! I just love it!”
“Yes, you are right, Flaubert. Indeed we`re living in a spectacular place and are blessed because of that”
“I agree with you, buddy”
“So today is Roselyn’s birthday, will you go?”
“Yes, she invited me”
“Me too. I am looking forward for tonight`s reunion” said Tom smiling. “All of our colleagues will be there so I think it will be fun!”
“I think so too, Tom” replied Flaubert. “It`s not every day Roselyn`s birthday, so we better enjoy the moment”
“Yes, you are right. I think this is what she wants, too” added Tom.
Some steps further, they were greeted by Josh. They were all school colleagues but everybody would avoid Josh because of his bad reputation. He was often referred to as “The thief”
“Hello guys, what are you up to today?” asked the boy with a wicked smile.
“Hello Josh, nothing much; just enjoying ourselves of a nice walk” replied Flaubert smiling. “What about you?”
“Me too, just hanging around in here, with my friends and trying to have some fun, that`s all” said Josh with a funny tone.” Flaubert, I am a in a need right now so is it possible for me to ask you something?”
Flaubert and Tom looked at each other.
“Yes, Josh, do tell me. What is it that you need?”
“Would you borrow me your flute till tomorrow afternoon? I would need it.
Tom looked again at Flaubert.
“Yes. Please don`t ask, because I cannot tell you. It`s kind of a family matter” said the boy while gazing at him.
Flaubert said nothing for a couple of seconds, but would only think about it. Eventually, he pulled out the flute from his bag and handed it to Josh. Seeing that, the boy put a large smile on his face.
“Here you have it Josh. Used it as you wish”
“Oh thank you, Flaubert, thank you so much! I really need it, thank you! I shall meet you tomorrow afternoon here, to give it back to you”
“All right Josh, let`s meet tomorrow then” replied Flaubert kindly.
“Wonderful! I have to go now, but I`ll see you soon! Good bye!” said the boy and left.
“Flaubert, do you really expect yourself to see that flute back from Josh? Have you lost your mind?” said Tom, being still surprised by his friend`s gesture. He will never bring it back.
“He will return me the flute, Tom. I trust him”
“But he is The Thief, Flaubert! Why would you trust him? Why would you even try since everybody knows his bad fame?”
“Because everybody deserves a chance, Tom. Everybody” replied Flaubert as he looked as his friend.”
“I can`t understand you, I am serious” replied Tom.
“Sometimes, it`s not about understanding, Tom; sometimes it is about feeling” said Flaubert while looking at his friend.
In the following day, both Flaubert and Tom were in the same place, waiting for Josh.
“I`m telling you, he is not coming”
“Be patient, Tom. He will come, I have faith in this” Replied Flaubert.
“All right, whatever you say Flaubert. But I`ll keep my doubts anyway” said Tom.
Another half an hour passed; then another half.
Now, Flaubert was really starting to get worried. Will it turn out that Tom was right, after all?
He waited for another 10 minutes, looking around for Josh, but no sign of him. This made Flaubert very sad. It was difficult for him to see that he was wrong about Josh.
“Come, Tom, let`s go. Josh will not come”
“Well, this is what I`ve been trying to tell you. I`m glad to see you`ve finally come to your senses. Josh is a thief, Flaubert. He always was and will always be. It`s just who he is and no one will change that” said Tom while looking at his friend.
Flaubert let his gaze down. He was having a bitter taste in his soul.
“Yes, I guess you are right and you have been all along. I`m sorry Tom, I should have listened to you. It seems that after all, Josh is really what his bad fame says he is, just a thief”
“That is correct, Flaubert. Come, let`s go home now. We`ve waited enough for Josh” added Tom and put his arm around his friend`s shoulder. Slowly, they started walking toward home.
Flaubert never heard from Josh since that day. He would think about Josh for often times but there was nothing that he could do. Josh had disappeared with his flute and even worse, he had proven his real self. Thus, days had passed and Flaubert moved on with this life.
One day, after about two months, while returning from school Flaubert was in the same park. He was waiting for Tom.
“Hello Flaubert” he heard a voice.
When turning his gaze, Flaubert was surprised to see there…Josh. It was really him but only different. Josh was in crunches. Flaubert felt sorry when he saw him this way.
“Hello…Josh. How are you? Haven`t seen you for a very long time”
“I know, Flaubert; from the day I was supposed to return you the flute, isn`t it?” said Josh with a sad smile.
Flaubert didn`t say nothing for a moment.
“I did want to come to our meeting, Flaubert. I had all the intention in the world to give you your flute back; not even for a second have I thought in keeping it for myself”
“Then, what happened Josh? Why didn`t you come? I have waited for you”
“I know, Flaubert; I knew you must be doing that. I had a terrible accident while I was on my way to come and meet you. A car hit me and it broke my leg. I wanted to…”
“Your leg was broken because of me?” asked Flaubert turning all of a sudden his look toward Josh.
“No, no, please don`t take it like that, Flaubert. It just happened… nobody is to be blamed because of that” replied Josh with a kind smile on his face.
Flaubert had tears in his eyes. When remembering how badly he had thought about Josh and all this time he was in pain, because of the accident…
“Flaubert, what is wrong? Why are you crying?”
“I am sorry, Josh…I am so sorry…! Can you please forgive me?” said the boy with his eyes filled with tears.
“Forgive you? For what?” said Josh being somewhat confused.
“All this time you were in pain, and I was thinking about you in a terrible way; that you are a thief and that you`ve stolen my flute and that I`ll never see it again from you…Forgive me Josh, please forgive me. I didn`t know…forgive me” Flaubert cried.
The boy kindly smiled and took Flaubert in his arms, hugging him warmly. Then, he pulled out the flute from his school bag and gave it to Flaubert.