CHAPTER 28 – DEPARTURE

“Here is the place. Let me continue by myself,” said the little prince and he sat down because he was afraid.

Then he said, “You know, my flower. I am responsible for her. And she’s so weak! She’s so naive. She has four thorns that can’t protect her enough from the world.”

I sat down too because I couldn’t stand any longer.

“That’s all,” he said.

He still hesitated a little. Then he stood up. He took one step. I couldn’t move.

I saw something yellow that moved quickly near his ankle. He stood still for a moment. He didn’t cry. Then he fell down gently as a tree falls. There wasn’t even any sound, because of the sand.

And now, six years have already gone by. I’ve never told this story before. The people I met on my return were happy to see me alive. I was sad to lose the little prince but I said to them that I was just tired.

Now the sadness is not so big. I know that he has returned to his planet, because I didn’t find his body at sunrise.

And at night, I love to listen to the stars. It’s like five hundred million little bells.

But here’s something interesting. The fence I drew for the little prince wasn’t very big.

So sometimes I ask myself, “What’s happening on his planet? Maybe the sheep has jumped over the fence and eaten the flower.”

But sometimes I think, “Of course not. The little prince puts his flower under glass every night and he watches his sheep well.”

Then I am happy. And all the stars laugh gently.

Sometimes I say to myself, “Everybody can get distracted sometimes, and that’s enough to forget to put the glass over the flower on some evening. And the sheep can come to the flower in the night and…” Then the bells are changed to tears.

It’s all a great mystery. For you who also love the little prince and for me, nothing in the universe can be the same if somewhere, we don’t know where, a sheep that we never saw has or has not eaten a rose…

Look up at the sky. Ask yourself, “Has the sheep eaten the flower or not?” And you’ll see how everything changes.

And no adult will ever understand that this is so important.

For me, this is the most beautiful and saddest land in the world. I want to make another picture of it. It’s the same as the previous one, but I drew the land once more so that you can remember it better.

It’s here where the little prince appeared on Earth, and disappeared. Look at it carefully so that you’ll be sure to recognize it if you travel some day in Africa, in the desert.

And, if you come to this place, I am asking you, please don’t hurry. Wait a little when you’re under the star.

Then if a little man appears who laughs, who has golden hair and who refuses to answer your questions, you’ll know who he is. If this happens, please, be so kind, don’t let me be sad, write to me quickly that he is back.


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