Friday, January 18, 2013

Goodbye


In my time here I've learned of the phrase "The straw that breaks the camel's back." Ureliel's death was that straw, although in reality the weight was more of a giant boulder. My state was already so fragile. Now I can barely hang on. Most mornings I wake up feeling suffocated from the sobs that result of this horrible dream of mine that I keep having. Elrunamir and Ureliel are there, but they disappear into darkness despite all my efforts. I'm left in that darkness with only the feeling of despair and loss. Unfortunately, those feelings don't vanish even in the waking world.

It's why I don't give myself time to think. Not thinking of anything is the only way to keep myself from being completely broken by this unbearable burden. I do whatever I can. It doesn't matter if it's cooking, writing, or even watching television. I keep preoccupied until my body is so exhausted that sleep finds me instantly. I am actually thankful when Iselith and Saradith wake me up during the middle of the night. It prevents the nightmare from finishing. They'll be getting older soon, so I'm planning on having another child soon to keep me distracted.

Of course, Eloril has tried many times to get me to slow down. He tells me that I need to grieve properly. He doesn't understand. This is how I have to grieve. Elrunamir's death has started an awful cycle of all my children's deaths. Next it will be Elaril, then Sildor, then Lothirien, and eventually little Iselith and Saradith as well. I will have to keep going through this pain over and over again. If I grieve the way he wants me to then that grieving will never stop. Another child will die and cause these feelings to resurface. I'll be stuck forever down that path. Not slowing down is the only way to move forward.


After a couple weeks of really giving it the considering it needed, I decided to try for another child. I met Jeremiah Singleton. Naturally, I wondered just how he would be related to Rodney and Elrun. He's probably one of Rodney's brother's descendents. I didn't bother asking. In actuality, I wasn't that curious. I was mostly just glad that he was relatively easy to seduce.

I didn't notice it so much with Iselith and Saradith's pregnancy, but as the weeks have passed the realization has finally come to me. The nausea that has normally accompanied my pregnancies isn't happening anymore. I had to get a test to confirm that I was truly pregnant. Perhaps these two pregnancies are really just out of the ordinary, but I can't help but to feel that my body has actually gotten used to carrying children. I'm glad that I don't have to deal with throwing up now and possibly forever. However, I also went to find out the gender of the child. I don't know how to feel in regards to the news that I'll be having another daughter.


Eloril knew better this time than to complain, jokingly or not, about not getting another nephew. Sadly, I've been rather harsh on him recently. The guilt from doing this only weighs my heart down more. I keep pushing his attempts of comfort away, and I often sound annoyed whenever he tries to speak to me. What makes it all worse is that Eloril never says a word against me or gets angry. He just says he wishes he could understand my pain better so he could be a better support. He wants to do more than cooking and cleaning for me.

I wonder if Eloril was never meant to stay here until the task is completed. My brother really is amazing. He has so much to offer our people and our land. However, he is now stuck here making spaghetti and scrubbing toilets. I see now that keeping him here with me is utterly selfish, but I know he won't leave by my persuasion alone. Eloril is too stubborn.


Anondil and Nikara's birthdays made me feel better, if only a little. It is a bit strange, but personality wise Anondil has turned out a lot like Elrun and Nikara like Ureliel. I suppose it's reassuring to find these subtle ways that my children still exist in my life. 

I know Elrun would be very proud of the man Anondil has become. It seems safe to say that he shouldn't have any problems with the military now considering how long he's been living as a citizen. Still, it was a common consensus between all of us that he shouldn't draw too much attention to himself. This idea works well for him. Anondil is naturally more reserved and quiet, and he wants to be a full-time writer. By using a pen name, he can remain relatively unknown even if his works sell well.

Before he left for his new place, Anondil thanked me. He did not say much more than that, but I could see from the look in his eyes that he knew more than what I've told him over the years. It appears Elrun must've told him the full truth before he passed. I thanked Anondil in return, and wished him well.


Once again, my new daughter decided to come just as I began to eat dinner. Eloril wasn't around this time to help since he and Cadrie were out at a symphony. Nikara is not like Ureliel in that she was not willing in any way to help with the delivery. That was fine though since someone needed to watch the twins. One child being born isn't even a challenge for me anymore. It was the first time in a long time that I couldn't fit all the cribs in my room though, so the third one was placed in the unused bedroom next to mine.

While I wanted a new child to help distract me from my grief, I was surprised that my new daughter Anithien helped to raise my spirits. I thought I was too far lost to find such support from her. Granted, I still feel nowhere close to alright but I'll take what I can get. She grew up so astonishingly fast. Anithien was crawling around as a toddler before I could blink. As adorable of a child she is, I'm sure she'll be even more beautiful when she's older.


When Iselith and Saradith's birthday came, I realized it couldn't be all that longer before more horrible news came my way. I went to visit Elaril as soon as I could. He looked fine, and he said he felt fine as well. Still, he admitted that he knew his days are steadily ticking away.

He did his best to make me try and promise that I won't become like I did after Elrun and Ureliel's deaths. It was hard to say anything when I've barely recovered from them. I don't want to fall back into that darkness though. It's cold and terrifying. I couldn't promise Elaril anything, but I said that I would try my best. That's all I can manage at this point.


One day after Cadrie, Nikara, Iselith, and Saradith left for school, I noticed that Eloril was acting very strangely. It wasn't the kind of suspicious way he was acting when he had the tickets for our trip either. I pretended not to notice in hopes that he would come talk to me about it, but he didn't. Eventually, I caught him throwing away a letter in the trash. Eloril had given me the rest of the mail earlier. The letter had to have been addressed specifically to him. That instantly made it even more suspicious since Eloril never receives mail from anyone.

There was no way I could resist taking the letter and reading it. My heart stopped when I saw the familiar, flowing handwriting. It was written by naneth on behalf of both her and ada. They were begging Eloril to return home. They stated that the "situation" had gotten worse, and they needed his help desperately. They wrote that I would be fine on my own so there was no reason for him to stay longer.


I was so stunned by the words and the whole arrival of the letter itself that I accidentally let Eloril catch me reading it. Before he could say anything, I demanded that he tell me of the "situation" that our parents spoke of. Eloril was extremely reluctant to say anything, but all these years of being a mother has taught me how to prompt the truth out. Eloril explained that the humans want to move the wall dividing our lands further back onto our side so they could have more room for themselves. 

Then Eloril revealed that there was an underlying reason. What the humans wanted the most was our west coast with it beautiful beaches and natural resources. They think that the elves should give up our land. That way everyone could be merged together, and we would have the freedom to move about as we please. We wouldn't have to worry about running out of space. To give up the land and culture that many of our people fought and died to protect seems but a trivial matter to those who want what we have only because it will make themselves richer.

I couldn't believe that something so terrible was going on. Eloril had to go home right away, and I told him that. He absolutely refused. He reminded me that I could barely keep myself together as it is. How would I be able to handle everything without him around? It was so tempting to agree. If Eloril hadn't been around I would have broken completely. I probably would have lost myself to heartbreak. Honestly, I don't know if I can be alright without him around.

And yet, I still have to let him go. I told him that I will just have to get stronger, won't I? I have my children and others to lean upon. There is no shortage of people to support me. He did so much to make my life better. He did his job as an older brother, and now he needs to do his job as a chosen protector of our land.

His decision didn't come right after what I spoke. We argued and talked about it for hours. Eventually, Eloril came to accept my words and chose to return home. Cadrie asked that he at least stay for her upcoming birthday when we told the children he would be departing. Eloril agreed since it was only a couple days.


Unfortunately, Cadriethiel's birthday wasn't the most cheerful considering everything that happened. We did our best to make it as pleasant as possible though. After Cadrie was all packed to leave to go and live with Devon for a while, she said that until a couple days ago that she had no idea what she wanted to do with her life. Now that the letter from our parents had brought us all to light about the situation facing our land, Cadrie discovered what her goal was. She wanted to become involved in politics and rise up high so that she could help protect the elvish lands. Hearing that made me quite proud. Eloril said that he'll hold her to her word.

Cadrie left after that.


The next day it was time for Eloril to take his leave as well. I did my best to send him off with a smile, but of course I cried like the crybaby I am. Eloril managed to smile the whole time though. He promised to come back if he ever got the chance. He also promised that he would get ada and naneth to write to me. They hadn't before because they didn't want to make me homesick and come home. Now that he's been with me for so long, he can reassure them that I have the strength to see this task through to the end. He'll be able to show them that I can be happy here.

We delayed his leaving for as long as we could, but he had to leave before night fell. It was much harder to watch him walk away this time even though our parting was on good terms. I went back to my room to cry freely.


With Eloril gone, the house feels emptier than it ever has. I feel empty. I tried to move pass the feeling and continue about the days as normally as I could. The intense hollow sensation never wavered. It slowly dawned on me that so many I cared about had moved on from this place. Perhaps it was also time for me to move on. I knew I could not remain here forever. I pondered the idea for another week to make sure I was making the right decision. The absolute truth was that it was indeed my turn to leave this place.

I sat Nikara, Iselith, and Saradith down to explain what I felt and ask if they would be willing to move. Iselith and Saradith did not mind. They had not been in school long, and also had not really found their place in this town yet. Nikara was much more reluctant to agree. I thought she would refuse to leave, but after we continued to discuss the matter, she changed her mind. She said if it would make me happy again, then she could go along with it.

I was so relieved.

I talked to the rest of my children as well. They all quickly agreed as well that I should move. After coming so far, I needed to do what was best for myself. Nadrien quickly came to me suggesting a new place. It is within this country still, but is heavily influenced by Italian culture. She was sure I would love learning about their kind of cooking there. I looked into it, and the more I saw of it the more I decided that was the place I wanted to be. The paperwork was done with the help of my children. The packing took longer than I wanted. It was mid-summer by the time everything was ready.


We left early in the morning so we could make good time. Amadrie, Threlad, and Anondil were helping us to make the trek. It was the first time in a while since I've felt so excited. It feels like I'm starting a whole new life. I will miss what I have to leave behind here though.

Goodbye Appaloosa Plain. Goodbye Elrunamir and Ureliel. Goodbye Eloril. Thank you......


END OF PART ONE

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Good. I'm sure the move will be good for...

WAIT A SEC! She decided this after her brother left! He won't know where to find her! Her parents will write to the wrong house! By the time this situation is resolved, it is likely her remaining children will have passed! How will he find her all the way in Italy!

Anonymous said...

With the first part finished, I cannot say I have noticed a whole lot of things improving since the prologue. The lack of direct dialogue... I almost want to call it a bad move for this type of story, and the events. A lot of things are happening, and are supposed to be emotional, but I don't feel any emotion coming from this second-hand-dialogue aspect.

Ello is talking to one of her children. I know the topic of the conversation, but nothing really that feels like a direct dialogue. Lothi not wanting to move in with Charlie? I read about how she was against it, but I see nothing of it that really shows her anger or resentment for that idea. I see no real personality in her not wanting to go, nor do I see any in Ello, who just sort of shrugs her shoulders.

Ello herself hasn't changed a whole lot, either. Yes, she has softened up about humans... but only about humans that are related to her, meaning her children, and the odd mention of one or two of the fathers. She still resents humans, she still thinks elves are better simply because of the reason of "because", and doesn't come across like she has learned anything. She even became less emotional about her 'task', and if the protagonist doesn't care about her task, why should the reader become invested in what she's doing?

Minor thing, but the many elven names are getting very difficult to keep up with. They all have Liel and Runa and Idith and such in it, I can't even differentiate them from each other anymore. And the biggest problem with Part 1 is... these are not characters. These are Sims with a name and hair slapped onto them. I have nothing to get invested in for these guys; the children have barely any personality to them that makes them stand out, I can't even recognize them in the pictures because they all begin to look the same: long, dark hair for several toddlers, then they barely change as they get older.

I will read the rest, though. See if things improve in a new environment.

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