Suddenly, the penguins turned around and noticed that they were alone in the darkness. Everything and everyone had disappeared. No little girl with a red scarf, no old man, no butterfly, no earthling throwing money in the air and dancing and screaming and singing, no cat, no dog, no duck, no Piera della Francesca, no ice-cap, no ocean, no dream, no nightmare, no corridor, no sky and no ground, no ceiling and no cellar, no nothing, they had lost track of the umpteenth number of hours , days, months seeking for something which they could not grasp, nor even understand, they looked around and they were alone, they were not even sure if there were any other thing that three penguins, and not even that was clear enough to be proclaimed loud and clear in the country with no name, no shape, no glimpse of existence. They said nothing. They felt nothing. They feared everything. Accordingly and for very good reasons they sat down and decided to play cards.

The little girl with a red teeshirt was walking in an endless white corridor with few penguins and an old man. They were surrounded by strange headless beings which were playing with black squared balls. The game had no meaning, at least none which could be understood. All beings were silently screaming and throwing banknotes in the air while the black squared balls were turning around in a meaningless dance. Other beings were obediently dying in an absolute indifference.

The Little girl with a red shirt was anxious. Since she had recovered the ability to see, hear and speak, the world she was discovering was somewhat different from the one she had anticipated before from the depth of her dark realm. Feeling this emotional pressure, the penguins came to her and laughed about it stating that humans were always depressed when they faced their own misery but that she should not feel concerned since she was wearing a red dress. She noted that there was no link whatsoever between the colour of her hair and the nature of human kind to which the penguins responded by alluding to the size of the moon which was definitively warmer than the length of the little girl’s red scarf. The salamander and the butterfly added that there was no other dream than the smell of a tree while the old man emphasized that each time he was walking on the Ocean surface he was reminded of Hemingway. Although a bit confused, the little girl with a red watch smiled and contemplated the waves which, at that particular moment, looked like a wall of horses.

The little girl with a red scarf was walking on the water followed by an improbable cohort composed of a crazy old man, a cat previously referred to as a yellow butterfly, a salamander and few penguins. The liquid was solid on the surface but remained somewhat viscous and slimy immediately underneath. They could feel it although they had not real any chance to test it. They felt uneasy walking in this manner on top of the Austrian Ocean but they did not have a choice or did they? The little girl who could not speak, see or hear anything felt very light and happy, smiling and even whistling awkwardly a tune which made no real sense, this was kind of strange. The penguins were grumbling and tried to fly to avoid touching the solid water with their sensible feet they realized that the sky was also of a solid nature. They could not fly through it. They had no other option than walking aside the smiley little girl. The whole party was walking slowly between a solidified sea and a mollified sky. Suddenly, they saw an opening in the sea which had a shape of a square with a door tainted in white with yellowish nuances…

The little girl with a red sweater, the penguins, a salamander, a butterfly and an old and sad man were packed in a small boat drifting away on the Austrian Ocean on top of what used to be Vienna. The little salamander wanted to get wherever he could admire Piero Della Francesca frescoes while the penguins vaguely remembered that they were in principle aiming at finding where the ice-cap had gone, the butterfly was longing for a cup of tea and the old man did not desire anything but peace which he believed was deeply entrenched at the bottom of this particular Ocean. They could not agree on where to go but had no desire to argue, particularly since they did not understand one another. At one point a penguin noticed that they had no oars nor sails, a fact which was not necessarily a good sign but no one else seemed to register this information. They all watched the sea which was indifferent to their aspirations while the little girl who could not hear, see or feel anything started smiling at the perception of freedom and plenitude which slowly infiltrated her skin and bones.

The girl with red shoes, the penguins, the salamander and the butterfly were evolving in a world which was setting new grounds, tentacles and channels on a daily basis. They could not grasp the oddity of it and were quite frankly impermeable to any concept of this nature. Instead they decided to dance and sing in mute voices to celebrate the beauty that resided in the inner self of any being, whichever or whoever it is. When this was done, they sat on a bench next to an old man and remained still for a long time.

The wind of fury was falling upon the world with its ghostly figures. Blood and suffering, turmoil and chaos were flirting with a dazzling wind imitating some unknown and macabre dance. The little girl with a red shirt could not understand what was going on since she could not hear or see or feel anything. She simply anticipated that the world was proceeding with its endless journey towards life. The salamander saw sketches of light which did not match nor make any sense at all. He remained still along the girl’s left hand. The butterfly’s eyes were projecting sculptures of colours through millions of micro-eyes but she failed to grasp what was the meaning of all this thus leaving her with no choice than wondering along in the girl’s hair. The Penguins’ knew too well what was coming; they had seen the humans’ shadows all around with their smell of death and taste of power; they stood up on their fragile legs and surrounded the fragile little girl and took her by their fragile wings and all went away through the gates of fate…

The Penguins, the butterfly, the salamander and the little girl with a red sweater were sitting on a bench facing a lake. All but the little girl were admiring the colours of the rain. The little girl who could not hear, say or see anything had her head gently sloping from one penguin to the other. She seemed to enjoy it utterly despite her face which only reflected a silent pain. At one stage she took the tip of the Penguin’s wing and slowly wrote on the vacuum of the air what seemed to mean ‘WHY’. The Penguin reflected for a moment and then delicately took one of the little girl’s fingers and drew letters which could have read ‘WHY NOT’? He then retained a sigh while she remained still at the end of the world and of the time. There was no meaning and no aim, no past and future, just the mere present which overwhelmed them all.

The Penguins, the yellow butterfly and the blue salamander walked around tirelessly, enjoying landscapes they could not understand, appreciating sounds they could not decipher nor identify, absorbing feelings they could not master. At one stage, they met a human child with whom they could not interact with and who was silently waiting for something or someone. They sat next to her and offered her a red raincoat because rain was pouring from a dark sky. She accepted in silence because she could not speak. There was a strange smile on her skinny and damaged face. The Penguins tried to sing a song but they had forgotten the rhyme. The butterfly started to dance but stopped when it became clear she could not see. The salamander wanted to joke about the moon on the horizon but forgot the ending when he realized she could not hear. They remained together for several hours because it was obvious she appreciated to be with them. The world around them was still and its meaning far too complex to comprehend.

The Penguins and their believers assessed the situation and decided to move ahead since stillness only confused them. They considered that the goal was not in itself an issue to discuss anymore but the road was. Indeed they could not dream about understanding where they were going and how they could reach the ice-cap and bring it back where it belonged to. But they could easily determine what their next step should be, how to move one leg up and how to move it down, how to walk five meters up or down the road, when to eat or drink or sleep. Accordingly, they decided to forget about their future and focus on the present, and to this end took a series of decision about what to eat and when to do so, when to take a nap and where, where to stop for the night and for how long, and they felt good about it. Smiles came back to their pretty faces.