The Persistence of Loss – Part Eight: The Master of Convenience


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Tindómiel moved slowly towards the edge of the tower, the highest place of the entire estate and peered over the edge, casting his eyes over the expansive grounds which she could see perfectly well from where she was standing from a safer distance. It was cold, almost freezing outside, which made for the most beautiful of nights usually, the sky clear, the stars scattered bright and as far as the eye could see, and that night was no different, only the ground below was covered in a thick fog so that she could not even see where the fog ended and the earth below began. And she watched him, his every facial expression, his every move, almost afraid to blink, for if she did, she might find him gone again as quickly as he had come.

This isn’t real, Ana.

She shook her head, and stared at his profile, taking in every detail of him as if she were seeing it for the first time all over again. The bumpy, veined texture of his cheek, his nose, the way his white hair fell in such a way over his shoulder, and that one stray lock that always fell over his forehead that she had always constantly reached to brush away. And then he turned to look at her, giving her a small smile and an apologetic shrug.

“Seems as though I’ve lost track of time, once again. Sorry about that.”

And then his eyes were on her, as he tilted his head to the side, licked his lips in the way that he’d always done and peered at her curiously after looking her form up and down.

“You look like hell, Veya. What precisely has been going on?”

“Where have you been?”

During my time away, I’ve felt a lack. I feel powerless. Almost like a walking cliché searching for this untapped power I’m yet to find. I need to return to my roots, to separate myself from the others.”

He didn’t answer, but simply turned away from her slightly then, his attention on the grounds once more and he clapped his hands together, peering off into the distance. He wouldn’t give her a straight answer. He never had, and whether his presence here was imagined or not, she knew that at least this one thing would remain unchanged.

“This place is so wonderfully horrid, is it not? It’s like… “and he paused for just a moment, shaking his head. “… death. Death is beautiful, right? Or it can be.”

“You’re afraid of death. That’s why you gave me this ring…”she reached inside her robe to pull out the chain on which her wedding ring and his soulstone now hung instead of in place on her finger. “You told me that the night before our wedding, remember?”

Guldan did something that changed history. Slavery probably isn’t the right word, eternal servitude perhaps? He created servants by binding souls to inanimate objects and those were the driving force of those servants. You are marrying a very paranoid man, and so what follows is protection and solitary housing. I want to lock myself away from everyone, because I’m afraid of this place and what it stands for. Death. That’s why you wear that ring and that’s why I’m going to do everything I can to protect myself.”

Ana Tin EPL

Again he had no response, and so Ana asked him the question again.

“Where have you been, Tindómiel?”

“I’ve found myself. All this chaos may finally come to an end,” he replied simply and then he held out his hand to her, and she didn’t even hesitate but a moment before closing any gap that was between them, and she squeezed his hand with hers a little too tightly, afraid that if she held him any less then he would just disappear before her eyes. And he would, it was just a matter of when, not if. She clutched at his robes, stretched on her tiptoes and buried her face into his neck, beginning to tremble and to cry.

This isn’t real, Ana.

If this isn’t real then why does he feel the same, why does he smell the same?

Because you’re crazy.

I don’t care.

He stroked her hair as she cried, and spoke softly words that were reminiscent of those she had heard once before, ones that had he not spoken them again right now she would never in all of her days forget, regardless.

“I am yours, solely, and worlds will have to be broken before that will change, but love, in my eyes, is to sacrifice everything for the people you love, which is why I tried to sacrifice everything for you, even if it was just to protect you.”

I need to return to my roots, to separate myself from the others.”

Ana shook her head emphatically no, and uttered the word over and over.

“No, Domi. No, no… don’t leave. Don’t protect me anymore.”

He held her tighter and carried on, nodding his head, chuckling.

“I am far too selfish a man for that. And there, I have broken my vow haven’t I?”

This isn’t real, Ana.

I don’t care.

And her husband, or the ghost of her husband, or the manifestation of Tindómiel Singsorrow, or whatever it was that she saw before her created by perhaps nothing but her own mind, stepped up onto the ledge of the tower, separating himself from her only long enough to situate himself, before holding his hand out to her again.

“Take my hand, Veya, it’s going to be okay.”

Without question, she slipped her hand into his, stepped up to the ledge where he was, held onto him tightly, pressed her face against his chest and closed her eyes.

I want you with me, every day of forever.”

Everything I am, and everything I have is yours, long before and long after this.”

Even in my chaotic fury, my unending torment, and my despicable means I have you, Veya.”

I am yours.”

Ana and Tin BT2

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