An excerpt from a druid in the city
Writing these journals about my past has never been easy for me but is something I do because I know I must and I know it serves a greater purpose. I had recently begun to think back on my early years in the forest and I recall most strongly the day that Amaras stepped out of my life for a time. I remember it so well because I can so easily recall the pain in my heart when that day came and of the anger that filled me near to bursting. I was still young then no more than sixteen winters and I still did not know how to control the many emotions that were running rampant in my body nor did I know how to put words to them. All I knew is that whenever I saw Amaras my heart would beat faster and I would perspire a bit more and when he touched me it sent thrills through my body that both delighted and frightened me. Such are the feelings of love but for a young girl to know that is asking a lot, all I did know is that I wish he would flirt with me like Cade had, that he would give me small gifts or smile at me with one that held more affection then just friendship in it. I have learned a great deal more of his people in the years since then and love is one of the large gaps between our people. Where humans can fall in love quickly sometimes with nothing more than a simple look it takes an elf years if not decades to know love for a person. But when they do feel love, true heartfelt love for a person it last for hundreds of years and they give of themselves to that person in a way more profound than any human could ever give to another. They don’t hide anything from their lover, they bear their souls and share them in an almost magical way that most shorter lived races could never understand. To them making love is more than just a simplistic pleasure it is a blending of two beings. Try to explain that to a girl of sixteen winters and you will get nowhere!
At that time all I knew is that I kept throwing coy looks at him, would reach out to touch him in a tender way and though his smiles would make me weak he never returned the actions. And when I learned that he had nearly died in the forest only to be saved by an elven women I was furious for no reason. Why had it not been me? Why had Nil’sha not sought me out to help him? Truth? Well that is something that is often harder to accept then the worst lie you can tell yourself. Because had she he would have been dead before I ever arrived. It still made me angry and when I did see him after that incident and he would not tell me where the half healed scars came from I was even angrier and acted like a spoiled, jealous child. I still recall my harsh words to him that day by the lake. “Why can’t you tell me Amaras? What could you tell that tramp elf who found you in the woods? Is that it? You can tell some stranger but not me? Because I am nothing more than a human who couldn’t understand is that it!” I stormed away after that leaving him there staring after me his hurt heart splayed over his face like an open book. I did not see him for close to three months after that and I of course assumed it was because of me but in truth he was dealing with other more personal problems.
When he did return I noticed that something was different about him, he was quicker to anger towards others for small things. He seemed more nervous in the city almost like he was a caged animal, I also noticed the marks on his body still had not healed and my magic could not affect them at all. We sat there on our rock watching the sun set when he reached out and took me in a strong embrace, hot tears splashing down my neck his words heavy in my ears. “I’m scared Jaylinn, I don’t know what is happening to me but with each month that passes I find myself slipping more and more. At first I thought it was nothing but now I find there are parts of my memories I have lost. I snap at people for no reason, I even raised my claws to Cade when he spoke out of turn.” I wrapped my arms around him and held him and I wanted to tell him so much then that I loved him but I didn’t know how nor did it seem appropriate. We sat that way as the moon rose and then he pushed back from me and smiled sadly. “I am leaving for the deeper parts of the forest my friend….I seem only to know peace there and I worry that till I can learn to control or even know what is happening to me it is the only safe place for me.” We ended up talking for sometime after that and I realized that where at first I felt like he was punishing me in some way by leaving he was in fact leaving to protect me. How long before he snapped at me or worse called forth his claws and fangs? What would happen if he could not control himself and something I did set him off? He was leaving because he did not want to hurt me or the other children or for that fact anyone he cared for.
Come morning he was gone having left me a gift. It was a golden acorn from the great tree and carefully etched into it and inlaid with silver in the common tongue was the words “Farewell my bright star, may your light one day help guide me out of the darkness.” Below were etched words in the druidic language “Light laughter and sweet water my friend.” It would be a long time before I saw him again and many things would change in my life and I would learn a important fact about humans and how when we can’t have what we truly want we take what we are offered at times. But no matter how many decades passed the feelings in my heart for him never faded in the slightest and I think that is what made his loss tear at my soul all the more. To have to stand by and watch as the illness in him ripped him away bit by small bit and stole the man I knew as a child not only from me but from his family as well was the single hardest thing I ever had to endure in my life.