Every night Daniel had the same futile dream. He’d wander bare, scorched earth to the base of the steep, sheer cliff face and begin to climb. He’d climb till his limbs ached and his fingertips bled, begging footholds and handgrips, gradually filling with anticipation at the promise of the top, only to reach it and find the dull flat expanse of empty miles ahead of him once more. In the faraway distance, the stacked cliff loomed again. Nearly hopeless, he’d lift himself and start over, his steps heavy.
Daniel always woke before he reached the mountain a second time.