Journey to the South: Thirty of Thirty

Posted: March 4, 2013 in Fiction
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     It has been five years since the night that the Monarch and I swore those oaths. I have seen my children grow, including seeing Rakaj sent off to the Imperial City as a young man for schooling so that he might rise through the ranks of the Great Bureaucracy, as well. I have seen the relations between the Moy and the Kingdom grow stronger, even as the Moy struggles against slave-revolts and seriously considers the act of emancipation, at the advisement of the Priesthood of Tule among others. Lamentably, I have seen Viro take ill and succumb to the ravages of disease, but I have also seen Akar take the empty place at my side. I have seen the seasons come and go as the Kritanoi deem them to do, I have seen the lands change, I have seen the people change, I have seen myself change.

    Like many, there are times when I think back over my life and wonder what might have been should I have made different choices? How would things have been different had I not let Rakaj play with the innkeeper’s daughter in Tarahn? Would we all have frozen to death had Decurio Atam and I forged on ahead to Yantih through the blizzard or would we have made it to the city? Would Cuahuatec still be alive if I had not sent him off for pomegranate? Would Viro still live had we not traveled to this foreign land?

    So many choices, so many questions, so many ephemeral possibilities that flit at the vague boundaries of the imagination. To learn from your actions and hypothesize how one might have chosen differently – so as to hopefully make better choices in the future – is one thing, but to constantly mull and obsess over minor choices and decisions that spiraled into consequences that shook the very foundations of one’s world…

    To do that leads to nothing but folly. That has been one of the most important lessons that I have learned in my journey south into the Hundred Kingdoms of the Tainir. My life and the lives of those around me have been changed irrevocably, for both the better and the worse, ever since I left Harran more than five years ago at the command of Moynama Pahnot Gharan Udo. Though there are actions and consequences that I regret and lament, I would not change any of them in the end. For it is those actions, those consequences, the choices that informed and led to them, that have shaped my story and the stories of those close to me. It was those events that have sculpted us into the people that we are, for good or for ill.

    And so, as I write these final, parting words before I leave my desk and go to join my new wife and my two daughters for the evening’s meal, I say this: I am ever thankful for my journey to the south. It has led to happiness, pain, growth, loss, and a multitude of new experiences.

    What more can one ask from the world?

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