“I like being quiet,” the Quiet would say to the Loud. “There is a Beauty in the Silence.”
The Loud would shake his head. He was an enormous creature with a hearty laugh and a deep booming voice, his hair uncut and unruly. Each strand of it moved as if it had a life of its own as his gigantic head moved from side to side. “I DO NOT UNDERSTAND THIS ‘QUIET’ THAT YOU SPEAK OF,” he would boomed, “YOU NEED TO EXPLAIN TO ME AGAIN.”
The Quiet and the Loud lived on a small little asteroid floating innocently and very slowly into a black hole in the middle of the vastness of Space. If I was to pinpoint their exact location, my most informed guess (which would not be accurate anyways) would be somewhere in the middle of the entire Universe. They have lived there for a million years, yet for creatures like them who can never die, Time does not matter. For a million years, they talked about their whole lives, the things that they have seen when their little asteroid pass by significant milestones in the universe. For reasons beyond my comprehension, they never seem to grow bored (as they would always talk about the same things).
Perhaps they do not possess any long-term memories.
“You know when we both do not speak,” the Quiet would reply, “there is an emptiness that will appear in the air between us. This emptiness does not emit any sound. That is ‘Quiet’.”
“BUT I CAN STILL HEAR THE GENTLE WHISPERING OF THE STARS,” the Loud would retort. He doesn’t believe in the philosophy of the Quiet. It seemed like such a…sad way to live one’s Life.
“Of course you can,” the Quiet would then reply grandly. He was a creature of distinct tastes. Lanky and pale, he was about the height of a ladder with 20 rungs and the width of a billiard pole. How can such a creature exist, you would ask. I cannot answer, except that somehow, he exist, with a heart, lungs, a liver and a brain just like anybody else in the Universe. He only has one strand of hair on top of his round head, and he was mighty proud of it. It made him looked smart, he thought.
The Loud would be confused then. He raised his enormous arm and scratched the right side of his head. The Quiet was always cryptic like that. One minute, he would be explaining his theories about their existence and why the Universe is as what it is, yet the next he would say something incomplete, as if the Loud was supposed to be smart enough to guess the rest of the sentence and continue the conversation himself in his own head.
Both of them sat down on the little asteroid as it whizzed past red stars, exploding supernovas and even a Earth-like planet that was only starting to blossom into a haven for Life.
“Do you understand it now?” the Quiet asked, breaking the 10 year silence between them.
“OH!” the Loud exclaimed. “YOU WERE DEMONSTRATING WHAT ‘QUIET’ MEANT!” He laughed, his laughter shaking the Asteroid a little off course before it veered back into the gravity of the Black Hole. What a strange person, this Quiet. And here he was thinking that the Quiet would never speak again after yet another cryptic answer to his question.
“What did you think about this past 10 years?”
“I THOUGHT ABOUT HOW WE CAME ABOUT TO EXISTENCE, BUT ALL I COULD REMEMBER WAS A FLASH OF LIGHT, AND HERE WE ARE, SEATED ON THIS LITTLE ASTEROID WE CALL HOME.”
The Quiet raised an eyebrow. This was new. The Loud has never thought about anything that was remotely philosophical. He always thought about what to eat next, what he was going to do next, the dreams that he had and how it made him hungry.
He was always hungry.
“Now do you get what ‘Quiet’ means?” the Quiet inquired, sensing a breakthrough into the depths of the Loud.
The Loud paused. He was even more confused than before, and was a little dizzy (being confused for 10 years has that effect on anyone, even immortal and impossible creatures from outer space). He has never thought about the past, only the present and the moment.
His stomach grumbled with impatience.
“I DO NOT THINK THAT WHAT HAPPENED THE LAST 10 YEARS CAN BE CONSIDERED A BEAUTY,” he said at last, each word an act of exhaustion. The Loud was exhausted. He hasn’t exercised his brain this much in at least twenty thousand years.
“But see what it has done to you! You have thought about the past and what it means! It made you…think!”
“BUT I ALWAYS THINK.”
“Ah,” the Quiet would say, “that’s true. But you have, for the first time in a million and 10 years, thought about something bigger than the both of us. What is existence, who are we, and why we are here. If we have been talking for the past 10 years, you would not have had the time to let your thoughts wonder and make connections between thoughts that you never knew you had.”
The Loud was now a little angry. The Quiet has a way of being condescending. So he is saying that he suddenly became smarter by being quiet? How dare he! He looked away from the Quiet and fumed for another 10 years.
The asteroid flew pass three planets, each increasing in size, surrounding by an impossible number of moons. The Quiet was very patient, and he left the Loud to his own devices, knowing that the Loud will come back again.
“I GET WHAT YOU MEAN NOW,” the Loud conceded, shrugging his shoulders in defeat. “YOU WANTED ME TO APPRECIATE WHAT WE HAD, AND THE ONLY WAY WE COULD DO THAT IS WHEN WE ARE TRULY ALONE WITH OUR THOUGHTS.”
“BUT HOW DO WE THEN APPRECIATE WHAT WE HAVE WHEN WE ARE NOT ALONE?” the Loud asked.
The Quiet shrugged, and the little asteroid continued to travel on its inevitable path towards the black hole.