(Written in Petal’s glowing book of shadows – chronicling her time in Antorus)

Uncle once told us about circles – and as usual, I didn’t quite understand then, then I thought i understood later, and have come to the inescapable and impossible conclusion that I may never really understand, but may have a good idea now and that’s at least something.

Anyway, he brought up the idea that, in many ways, the entire swath of a lifetime is a series of circles.  The circle of the heartbeat at one end, and the grand circles of history at the other.  Fundamentally, he said that circles are all the breath of the universe, expressing itself in a thousand different ways.  I think that that’s what this may be, this war.  These demons.  This place – the end of a long breath measured in eons.  

It’s easy to feel small.  My sister and I knew almost nothing of what we thought we knew when we started out that night from the temple.  We’re still learning – everything we do is changing us, and … not always for the better.  The dreams keep coming, and the very nice lady-druid I’ve been talking to says that sometimes the hurts that cause dreams run deep, and are not easily mended.  She suggests each time that I should take time away, and I keep telling her no.  How can I?

She’s still fighting.  She’s still here.  And I am not leaving her.  

Kun and I – if I can read the stars right – turned twenty either two or eleven days ago.  I think I did the math right, but each time I walk through the numbers it comes up with the other answer, and just ugh.  So we’re twenty.  I didn’t have anything to give her, but I hugged her when I figured it out, and told her how proud of her I was.  She said I needed more to drink and we argued about that, and I couldn’t help smiling.  I think I sort of wierded her out.  Oh, well.  I really am proud of her.  She’s so much more than she ever was, and she was a lot to begin with, you know?

I’ve adapted chronomatic fissures to work against Demons – it’s surprisngly effective.  I think it has something to do with their inherently timeless nature; when you force time onto the timeless, it tends to act with a vindictiveness independent of any power I’ve put in.  I have theories that say that the natural world abhors impossibilities – but it’s going to be after all this is over before I can work out the formulae to express it in any sort of meaningful fashion.  On that note – 

During one of the breaks in the fighting, I tried again to gain membership to the Kirin Tor.   As tired as I was during the trials, I thought I’d done well – but according to the testing magus, “I lack the necessary fundamentals, discipline, and power.”  I didn’t let Cael or Kun see me cry – I … think they knew I was lying when I said the test ran long.  I know that human mages sometimes can’t join until they’re older, and I probably shouldn’t be as dissapointed as I am? But it still … all I’ve ever wanted was to learn.  And… I think this means that when the Tirisgarde moves on or disbands or whatever happens after the demons are done… I think this means that I won’t even be allowed back into the library.  

Stupid ice.  I don’t /feel/ ice.  Why can’t I be good enough without … without making snow?  

I guess it doesn’t matter.  I just.. look at Kun and everything that’s happening with her, and .. how amazing Cael is, and how everybody seems to have a place where they’re really good at something.  One of the mages that works with the Templars said once that you have to chase magic for the right reasons – and I think he was right.  There is so much … joy, in it. Just so -much-.  Using magic for me is like watching a sunrise or being close to Cael – it’s like playing in the snow when I was little.  Even if they won’t take me, I’ll still go on – I’ll learn.  And maybe that can be good enough.  

Celestials know every time I’ve tried to find a teacher, it’s gone wierd anyway.  

I know that the scrolls in the temple said, but the best part about everything is that I’m still alive.  I know what’s supposed to happen, and all I can be is glad that it hasn’t happened yet.  I never expected that when we went out into the world I’d find the kind of joy and fun and love that I have, and I know how much of a gift it is.  Maybe fate isn’t something you need to worry about – but, rather, it’s something you embrace, and guide, and maybe even change just by living.  Really living.  I know that if I don’t die, … I know what I’m going to do.

I’m going to see everything.  I’m going to grab Cael and just go -everywhere-.  I want to see where the trolls come from, and the great portal in the desert, and the great mountain the dwarves talk about – I want to see what the swamps look like, and maybe even go see the pirates way down in the south where it’s always warm.  I want to go see the great woods where the Night Elves have been living for thousands of years, and maybe even go see the big mesas where the Tauren city is.  Wouldn’t that be amazing?  Just … to see how big the world really is.  

I haven’t been brave enough to plan before now.  Not really – I’m always expecting that tomorrow may be the last day, that whatever raid we go on will fail, or the portal won’t hold, or the warning in the scrolls will happen and that will be it.  And I didn’t want to plan things and maybe hope and then lose it – but now I know that hope is the big secret.  Living isn’t enough by itself – you have to live for something.  Now every time we go out, every time we strke against a demon hold or free another captured fighter… or whatever it is, each time we go out I remember that it has an end, that one day I’ll be able to stop seeing all of the horrors and just… just go discover what’s out there to see.

I hope Uncle’s okay with the idea that I’m not going to be home for a long time.  I’m not even sure the Temple is home, anymore – that’s wherever Cael and Kun are. 

SPeaking of that – I need to set aside this quill and go to bed.  There’s a long day planned tomorrow – we’re going to raid a caravan of war prisoners at the edge of Antorus, and see if we can get them out before they get stuffed into a soul engine somewhere.  Some sleep’s probably a good idea.

Author Aunne
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