Some athletes talk a lot about a fabled mind set where nothing bothers them. In that frame of mind the crowd is not a factor and the other players are just an obstacle to move around or through. While they are in it it is only them and their task, they are at their best and nothing slows them down. They call it 'the zone' and usually their playing is referred to as being "on fire". Simon, who was not very athletic, had never been 'in the zone' before. Today was his first trip; his maiden voyage. Today, through some cosmic fluke, Simon had entered the zone. He was an artist even though this was the first time he had ever attempted anything even remotely artistic. Well unless you counted coloring or the art projects he did in grade school and Simon didn't; those were crafts.
He worked feverishly on the task in front of him; barely noticing the room, his surroundings, or even the people talking around him. He had already tackled the use of primary colors in the painting. He had stared at his painting in front until it seemed like certain areas called to him to have paint applied. He followed his instinct, or was it the paintings suggestions, and soon he set his brush to paper. When he was done 4 hours of time had lapsed and it seemed Simon had gained an audience. He looked around at everyone and then down at his paint colored hands. Jeff and the tour group had made their way back in along with other museum patron and staff; he was surrounded. Jeff eased over to have a look at the painting. His eyes went wide and his breath caught in his chest. Simon was not sure what that meant but he was afraid it was because Jeff did not like it, like he had not liked the weird cardboard bird. Jef turned to Simon smiling; "May I show them?" he asked. Simon nodded at Jeff and Jeff turned back toward the painting, Then he carefully picked up the painting and turned it to face the crowd. People let out strange noises and then grew very quiet.
His father slumped into the table Simon had been working at, as if without it he might have collapsed on his face. That was when Simon noticed his dad, mom and sister were all next to him around the table. His seemed to be overwhelmed and actually took the proffered seat slid to him from a member of the crowd. People quietly looked from the boy to the painting to Mondrian's examples. One patron said "It's amazing. His painting is completely different from anything I have ever seen of Mondrian. It is not a copy it is original and it's..... it's beautiful!" Simon was nodding as the man spoke, he had not copied a design he had simply created his own. He began shaking his head when the man exclaimed it's beauty, he had simply been taking on a challenge. He had held no delusions that he was creating art, this man misunderstood his intent in making the painting. As Simon was preparing to dispute this man's claim the sound in the room grew to a tumultuous pitch. Everyone began talking all at once as if Jesus had come down and cured someone of their leprosy.
The room being less then sound proof was at a fever pitch and Simon wanted nothing more then to escape. The cacophony of sound was making his head hurt. He looked toward the exit thinking only of leaving the confined space and heading for a larger area. What he was a door clogged with people and everyone staring at him like a pack of wolves stare at a lost lamb. At that moment he felt a tug on his arm and looked over to see Jeff was trying to yank him toward a backdoor that Simon had not seen before. His parents were still kind of in shock and his sister was busy trying to best his effors with her own version but the crowd was pushing forward. He decided to follow Jeff through the door that Jeff had opened with a magnetic key card. JEf pushed the door shut quickly so that it would lock behind him to prevent the crowd from following. Jeff yanked Simon's arm and Simon found himself marvelling at how amazingly strong Jeff was despite his mall stature. "I'm taking you to the main office so please keep up" Jeff informed him. Simon looked around and realized he had followed Jeff into the background of the museum. The area that required you to work there to walk through. The side the public never sees. At first glance it was nothing special it contained a lot of unfinished walls and the air conditioning ducts were visible. When they turned a corner Simon was confronted by a large storage space filled with crates. As explanation Jeff pointed lazily in the direction of the boxes and said "next month's featured artist". Simon was amazed to see the buzz of activity as the unloaded art was sorted. He slowed down to take in the scene and a few paintings caught his eye. He walked towards them until he was yanked back by Jeff. "Hey kid, we need to get to the main office so we can let your parents know where to meet up with you. This is no time to lolly gag!"
Soon Simon found himself in a very neat and orderly office while Jeff announced that "The Parents of Simon Ronsed are requested at the museum office" over the speaker system in the museum. Simon sat in a very large chair that left his feet to dangle below him and he began to swing his feet to and fro while he waited. It was at that moment that it happened. A sparkle in the corner of his eye, a hint of gold. He looked in that direction but there was nothing there, just a table and a chair with huge red painted canvases on them. He tried to ask Jeff about the sparkly item but Jeff was speaking to the museum director. He was sure it was some random art piece but he had an overwhelming desire to look at it. He remembered why he was there and decided to stay put. He did not need his parents to be more worried and upset with him. Worried would be enough to deal with. He could already hear the lecture "We know Jeff seemed safe but follo..." There it was again. Twinkling more incessantly in the side of his vision. He turned to look over there and it kept twinkling. It was coming from beneath the desk which was probably why he had not seen it when he had turned to looked before. He had simply been looking too high. He realized then that he had to investigate that twinkle because it seemed so out of place. He looked around and saw he was alone. He knew he was supposed to not move from the chair but he was just going a few feet away it was withing viewing distance. He would hear them come back and he could fein interest in the paintings on the desk or given enough warning he could probably even make it back to the chair. He had to see what was twinkling....