Squat and heavy, the stone sat next to the little spring, which was all boxed in and bricked up, water pooling, corralled, channelled, rather than roaming free.
The stone had been there so long it remembered a time when the water ran through green grass, from a natural pool lined with tiny flowers in curled leaves, the earth so dark and rich it was almost black.
The stone had held a different shape then. More curves, less angles. It had been chosen for its shape, placed there with careful hands, venerated and looped with flowers and ribbons. Now all that adorned it was moss, and the hands that touched it were no longer so careful, using sharp metal and blunt force to control its shape as they had controlled the spring, wanting to impose order on the land.
But the water still flowed, still clear and cold, tasting of deep caverns where light never shone, where dark towers of stone held crystal roofs high. The stone remembered being there, deep in the earth, in the place where the water was born.
And now, bit by bit, it flowed back there again, the spring taking it home.