They came every day to listen to him speak. He was an old man who lived on the beach. No one knew exactly where he came from. When they asked him, he said he came from everywhere, which was an extremely vague answer. He had apparently traveled a lot, and perhaps he couldn’t remember where he was really from. He was old and sometimes his memory was a little fuzzy. But when it came to stories, it never let him down. He remembered a lot of the moments he had experienced. And he told them in a calm voice that made them fit into the story. His stories were always coherent, and they fascinated the locals who came to listen to him as often as they could, sometimes even paying him to continue telling them his past. 

A group of young people were particularly interested in this old man and his stories. One of them had asked the old man if he could write them down so that others could read them if he was ever not around to tell them. The old man agreed. Since then, the young man had come to show him the transcribed stories. He planned to publish them under the old man’s name. 

One day, the old man told them a rather peculiar story. Usually, his stories had humans as protagonists, but this time the heroes were animals. It was the story of a friendship between two animals. A puffin and a dolphin. It could happen, but it was still quite rare for these two animals to become friends. So the old man began to tell the story. 

It was a summer evening long ago. A stormy evening. The thunder was roaring and the lightning was having a blast. The storyteller was a teenager during this story. At midnight, he had woken up with a thunderclap. Then he didn’t go back to bed, having found the spectacle of lightning in the sky fascinating. Being young and unconscious, he went out in the rain to see the lightning more closely. Stopping in his story, the old man told the group of young people not to imitate him, that it was very dangerous. It was better to stay inside during a storm. So he had gone out under the torrents of water. Nothing could have stopped him. He had gone to the pier which gave directly on the sea. To this day, he still did not know exactly what drove him there. The hand of fate? In any case, when he arrived on the pier, he had seen a bird fall into the sea, probably exhausted from having to fly in the rain. He had taken his binoculars out of his pocket, the ones that had never left him since he had received them for Christmas, and he had seen something amazing. The bird hadn’t drowned as he might have thought. No, it had just been saved by a dolphin.

The dolphin had come to carry it to the pier. The teenage boy who was the storyteller at the time had been amazed to see that. The bird, lying on the pontoon, had begun to move weakly. Then, little by little, it had regained strength. The dolphin was still there, right next to the bird, which was a young puffin. Usually these birds had no problems with the sea, but this one had been exhausted. His forces had abandoned him and he would have died without his savior. The teenager had watched the whole scene from a distance. He had seen the encounter that would lead to an incredible friendship between the two animals. Since that night, he had seen them together very often. Ims had never left each other. He even remembered taking a picture. But he didn’t know where it was. He had come every day to see if the two animals were still there. One day he never saw them again. The day after the old man had told them this story, the young people returned to the beach. They looked for the old man. They could not find him. No one ever found him. Several years later, the young man who had transcribed the stories had a book published in the old man’s name. It was very successful. The stories went on but the old storyteller had disappeared. 

Other English texts


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