Last year, what of it? I recall events that feel to have lasted for years, when they merely composed weeks. You see, I have not forgotten all that had burdened me last year. It’s silly really, all the odd things that managed to distort the year I had planned to be the year. Perhaps it was those pestering neighbours of mine, who still can’t seem to keep their newborn dragons quiet, or perhaps those nettlesome elves — who I always find meddling in my kitchen, as I try to bake my lemon meringue pies (they always manage to succeed in their foul mission to sabotage my filling). Fortunately, those vexed demons keep their distance now, I used to catch them lurking around my shabby cabin (which is indeed ‘shabby’ because of their misdoings).
Last year, I figured that since everything comes in waves, that surely chaos must also occur in waves. I planned on a restful year, I made a hearty promise to myself that I would, for that year, remain in a blissful solitude. All plans of such were utterly obliterated in a matter of seconds.
On the twenty-third of January, at one o’clock, I was abruptly approached during my tea, with a loud rapping at my door by an old friend that I used to know.
My partner was an odd fellow to meet that afternoon, it was a few twenty seven years since we had last engaged in any business of the sort. She told me that she sought me, in hopes that I would pursue another of our spirited adventures.
Aghast as I was, and certainly caught off guard, I replied nimbly, with a simple “yes”. A peculiar answer I dare say, as we had agreed to part ways indefinitely.
Our youthful adventures were invigorating, and I was only growing more tiresome with my increasing age. The times of warding off menacing sorcerers, leading a phantom army, and freeing captured souls from foreign lands were over for me… or so I thought. I hadn’t realized that the stupid, and simple “yes” was my consent to a deal — no — my signing of an official contract, pledging to abandon my entire life’s work, and sell my soul in hopes of defeating the malevolent Keeper of the Dark Pendant that wielded unearthly powers.
This hasty decision to embark on a rather fearful expedition reminded me of the truth I had suppressed for so long, that secretly I craved untamed exploration of precarious, and perilous territories.
Her eyes sparkled at me, the way they used to when they reflected the starry sky we used to sleep under, “I know it’s been a while,” she said. Her face was hard to read, as if she felt as many things as I had.
“It has,” I agreed rather dryly. There were so many things I wished to say, but I clamped my mouth shut in hopes to not scare her off. “Not much has changed here.”
“Well, it certainly doesn’t appear so.” She glanced about the room nosely, “For one thing, you’re very tidy now. Not nearly so disheveled.”
My eyes fell to her feet. “You’ve not changed a bit. Still small,” I commented accompanied by a nod at her size six shoe.
“Still perceptive, eh? Sometimes I’d argue it was your greatest weakness — you needed to lighten up.”
“Some would argue that you’re too frivolous,” I retorted.
Timely, the neighbour’s dragon interrupted our drawn out silence.
“I suppose I’ve overstayed my welcome,” she spoke hastily. “I shouldn’t have come. Forgive my intrusion, no harm was meant. You are in no way obligated to come with me.” She took my hand and placed a fragile article in the palm of my hand before folding over my fingers. She parted suddenly, misinterpreting my silence.
I opened my hand, and there it was, a small edelweiss flower that was planted on that mountain. I brought it to my lips, inhaling a deluge of memories — so much so, that I became overwhelmed. “Wait!” I called out, “Stop!”
She halted in her steps, her eyes locked on mine. It was my racing heart that told her that I needed to go with her.
Her features pulled into a longing expression, a beautiful expression. “That mountain,” my voice was shaky through my rapid breath, “you never abandoned me there. I promise, I won’t abandon you on yours. That is my resolution.”
She nodded, “Right then, meet me at dawn, at the portal.”
With a nod, I turned back into my house and shut the door.
“I thought you never wanted to see her again,” my snake hissed, slithering slyly into the hall.
I remained motionless, my eyes fixed on the slowly vanishing figure through the window. “You know, Lucy, I’m beginning to think that I never meant that.” My partner was no longer in sight, so I turned around and slid down the wall onto the floor. “I think I just got scared of some of the things we used to have to face. I wanted a break from the constant worries of those issues.”
Lucy curled up in my lap, “I’m happy you’re going, it’ll be good for you.”
“What about you?”
Lucy crept around my neck, “What about me? Those dragons next door are plenty of company, and those elves will share the food they steal. I’ll be fine.”
“Until my return,” we said our farewells.
I made my way to bed, my head felt so busy that I scarcely had time to shut my eyes. The following morning, I stuffed my weightless purse with my kitchen table, chairs, food, clothes, and other things I may have needed in preparation for a long expedition.
When I reached the portal, my partner looked surprised, “So you came after all?”
“Of course,” I replied.
“I reckon it’ll be a long quest. Are you still in?”
“Of course,” I repeated happily.
“It’s about a pendant — it possesses powers unknown to man. We must destroy the beholder before it’s power is misused.”
The thought of a new quest resurfaced an excitement in me, “When do we start?”
Her lips formed a smile that I frequently dreamt of; her smile was one of those smiles a person never forgets — it was an art, just as bewildering as her vibrant eyes. I knew it then, my peace, and my strength made a home of her heart. Perhaps that’s why I never found rest, because my subconscious craved her chaos, but couldn’t quite grasp the brand of chaos I yearned for. I searched for it in all the wrong places. My truth I never established was that I was lonely. Surrounded by people, but lonesome for my cheerful friend. I got tired of chaos, but I never got tired of her.
Sometimes, resolutions are made to be broken; sometimes broken resolutions reveal the right resolutions, resolutions that are better fit for one’s needs, like an awakening, a bittersweet awakening.