My dear Master J,
I fear that my last letter was sent in haste and without allowing my distress to cool before I spilled my thoughts into the paper. I may have written too much, but at the same time I feel as though I hardly wrote enough. So much is flooding my mind now that I have begun sharing what has been trapped inside of me for decades.
I am in the land of my forefathers. Fore-mothers at least. We are in the far eastern part of the Mark; my mother was born not far from here, and I as well. Only her death took me west past the Gap and onto the banks of another river.
I had never intended to return to these lands, but since I met Oendir, the commander of this company, I have visited here twice. Once to face one of his personal shadows and now to face a more dangerous one: four dark sorcerers who have blackened the skies and intend to bring destruction to the land. Their triumph will eliminate all life here and the death will spread like a disease.
So we must stop it. Here and now.
Have you marched yet to Minas Tirith? Has your final summons to lead your men into the shadow come?
I am no leader here. We have no leader here. Oendir remained in the village where he was elected mayor to serve and protect the simple villagers there. He appointed a stand-in by seniority and battle skill; someone who is a good solider who I trust at my side, but who does not have the patience or diplomacy that we are used to with Oen.
Cwendlwyn frowned and put the tip of her quill to the period and used the dot to start a “d.”
…Oen.dir. And while I miss his leadership, what I miss most is his warmth. The comfort I have just being near him. Being separated by distance and not just our silences makes my chest ache. The touch of his eyes restores me more than anything I can think of stowed away in my chest of medicines and herbs.
Is this what love is, my lord? This deep and coring loss when he is not here in the darkest hour? I have walked this earth for nearly three and a half decades and I am unsure what love is. I have been abandoned so many times in my attempts to love that I fear it. I drive it away, as perhaps I am doing now by being far too open with you, a potential lover. Yet I feel safe telling you these things. Is it because your are so far from me and the pain of being vulnerable? Or is that love? That trust that you will not abandon me for no matter what, there is something there that connects us?
I don’t know. I only know that as I am heading to face the shadow, I wanted to write to you because I know that you will hear me.
Your frank and lonely