Even I
Deona Lindholm

If anyone knew, they would probably laugh at the very concept.

After all, it is not precisely something that most people would understand.

Then again…not many would know the truth behind the man wielding the guitar.

There are so very few that do know. Most of those are beings that have been alive since the previous battle against Saruin, so many thousands of years ago, when Mirsa gave his life to seal the Lord of all Evil away from this world. The rest of those that would know, even fewer than the first group, would be those that have challenged –and passed- the Trials of Elore.

What is it that I speak of, you ask?

It’s the thought that even one such as I would be capable of human emotions, and not simply act like I do. That even I would feel…such warmth…and such deep pain.

One year ago, I found myself in the position that I needed to be amongst the people of this world, more than before…so I not only took on the form of a minstrel, but also began the Volunteer Brigade, comprised of little children. After all, I could tell, as did so many others that would listen and understand, that Saruin would soon revive.

It was in the autumn that so much began…surprisingly enough, in Weston, on the Frontier. It was there that I had met a dancer in a pub and had asked her to dance for us. As I played on the guitar, I admit, I was quite amazed and rather moved by her skill. I didn’t lie at all when I told her that I couldn’t express vocally how I felt by her performance…even if my reasons for giving her the Fatestone, Amethyst of Illusions, wasn’t precisely what I had told her.

To my surprise, after I left the Frontier, I met her again. She had left, on her own, and had gone after me after the encounter in Weston. She caught up with me in Altours, Rosalia. I had originally decided to go with her to keep an eye on this woman. Even then, I could see a strong potential in her.

I don’t know just when it was that my reasons had changed.

Somehow, as we traveled on and on together, I learned more and more about this dancer woman that had placed herself on the same path as the Fatestones and Saruin. With every quest that I either heard from her about or saw with my own eyes, an affinity grew.

Perhaps I shouldn’t have been so surprised when, one day, I realized that I had fallen in love with her.

Unusual, one would say. As I told her much, much later, I have a deep and abiding affection for this world, and all that lives within it. Yet…this emotion was so much more different than even that. That, as well as the dreams I began to have.

Yes, even I sleep and dream…and even I fall in love.

I never told her any of my true feelings, even when I met her, as I truly am, at the Altar of Trials. Even as I spoke to her about Saurin and why I would not interfere in what was to come, I felt a deep, sharp pain in my heart as I realized that, sometime, whether it was during the final battle or later on, she would die.

After I sent her from the Trials back to the surface of the world, I whispered very softly, “When you die, I will feel the loss, most of all…” When I blinked, I felt something slip down my face…and it took more than a single moment to realize that the “something” had been tears.

It has been a very long time since the last occurrence…but not too long to forget that when I cry, rain falls on the world below…even if there are no clouds. I quickly brushed the tears from my eyes.

No…I wouldn’t let a repeat of Mirsa’s fate happen…not again…and not to them.

Even as the time passed, I knew much had changed…not just with the world…but with me. Before, I would not have thought much at all about a pretty much solitary life in the skies above Sun’s Altar.

Now, ever since first meeting Barbara and realizing my emotions there…whether I am in the skies as my regular self or on the ground as the Minstrel, I feel so utterly alone.

Tonight will be the festival of the Scythe in Uso, on the New Road. Even though I am the god of Light and the father of all gods, I pray that I will see her again there. I cannot bear these feelings, the sorrow of being so alone, yet I am…afraid…of telling her.