At this the toad remarked, “Whatever’s good for you, for us it’s the other way around”, and with a hop and a plop he disappeared below.
“Strange fellow”, thought Alice, and the voice in her head agreed, “Strange fellow indeed. Though wouldn’t you like to follow, just to see, the world not as it is but how it could be?”
Alice didn’t like the voice in her head; it was always too clever by half, often just contradictory for the sake of it and, on occasion, not beyond a little sarcasm. She sensed the start of a battle of wills.
“Follow him, in this dress?!”, she cried. And the voice in her head, caught off guards, replied, “Oh well, dear, you know best”.
But then it continued, “Oh! I can’t stay here all day gossiping, I’ve got better things to do”, and was off. Alice knew not where the voice went when it was sulking; suddenly she felt alone and melancholic.
“One needs to break the tension.”
Alice looked around but saw no one. “Pardon?”, she said.
“The tension, one needs to break it.”
“Who are you?”, asked Alice, “and where are you?”
“I am the lake”, it said. “look, down here.” It went on,
“For pity sake, I see your confusion but what you see is just an illusion; it’s as I did mention, all down to the tension, which one may break by casting a stone, then one will see, what lies beneath will be gone.”
“Oh”, thought Alice and picked out a nice stone by the bank but hesitated. Ought she to cast it? The lake noticing her dilemma, said,
“One ought to do as one’s heart wishes. But, please, if one does it, do mind the fishes.”
Alice considered the fishes, and the kind toad, in their upside down world and dropped the stone where she stood. She wiped her hands down her dress, because, in the great scheme of things, wearing a clean dress didn’t really matter. Then, taking one long last look at the lake, she went off to find where the voice in her head was hiding.
Yes, it Lewis Carroll’s Alice. I was thinking of calling her something else but a) it was a problem coming up with a name, and b) it would be too obvious who it was really.
I think it became, unconsciously, a bit of a parable of first world politics. If you can see this, all well and good; and if you can’t, just go ahead and cast a stone, I don’t mind.