Jonathan Seagull spent the rest of his days alone, but he ﬂew way out beyond the Far Cliﬀs. His one sorrow was not solitude, it was that other gulls refused to believe the glory of ﬂight that awaited them; they refused to open their eyes and see. He learned more each day. He learned that a streamlined high-speed dive could bring him to ﬁnd the rare and tasty ﬁsh that schooled ten feet below the surface of the ocean: he no longer needed ﬁshing boats and stale bread for survival. He learned to sleep in the air, setting a course at night across the oﬀshore wind, covering a hundred miles from sunset to sunrise. With the same inner control, he ﬂew through heavy seafogs and climbed above them into dazzling clear skies ... in the very times when every other gull stood on the ground, knowing nothing but mist and rain. He learned to ride the high winds far inland, to dine there on delicate insects. What he had once hoped for the Flock, he now gained for himself alone; he learned to ﬂy, and was not sorry for the price that he had paid. Jonathan Seagull discovered that boredom and fear and anger are the reasons that a gull’s life is so short, and with these gone from his thought, he lived a long ﬁne life indeed. They came in the evening, then, and found Jonathan gliding peaceful and alone through his beloved sky. The two gulls that appeared at his wings were pure as starlight, and the glow from them was gentle and friendly in the high night air. But most lovely of all was the skill with which they ﬂew, their wingtips moving a precise and constant inch from his own. Without a word, Jonathan put them to his test, a test that no gull had ever passed. He twisted his wings, slowed to a single mile per hour above stall. The two radiant birds slowed with him, smoothly, locked in position. They knew about slow ﬂying. He folded his wings, rolled, and dropped in a dive to a hundred ninety miles per hour. They dropped with him, streaking down in ﬂawless formation. At last he turned that speed straight up into a long vertical slow-roll. They rolled with him, smiling. He recovered to level ﬂight and was quiet for a time before he spoke. “Very well,” he said, “who are you?” “We’re from your Flock, Jonathan. We are your brothers.” The words were strong and calm. “We’ve come to take you higher, to take you home.” “Home I have none. Flock I have none. I am Outcast. And we ﬂy now at the peak of the Great Mountain Wind. Beyond a few hundred feet, I can lift this old body no higher.” “But you can, Jonathan. For you have learned. One school is ﬁnished, and the time has come for another to begin.” As it had shined across him all his life, so understanding lighted that moment for Jonathan Seagull. They were right. He could ﬂy higher, and it was time to go home. He gave one last long look across the sky, across that magniﬁcent silver land where he had learned so much. “I’m ready,” he said at last. And Jonathan Livingston Seagull rose with the two starbright gulls to disappear into a perfect dark sky.