No one saw it, but crying is still for babies. And for once, and only once, that's ok. Babies are a new start, with options and a chance to learn new things still open to them, and finally, that's what I have to be.
Its been six months since we talked, since the last hold I had on everything I'd ever been was taken away from me. And I needed that. Who I was was wrong, horribly wrong. I told her I didn't want or need anything. I was wrong. What I wanted, what I needed, was what I've always needed. To be needed.
The days I was happy were when the kids joked quietly among themselves that they all had one extra spell, summon Sestian, just yell loud enough. I liked that, came to need it. My life has never been full of friends and people and thanks. In truth, except for a demon general, no one has ever really thanked me in anything but the most passing of ways. But then, they knew they needed me, they just had to yell loud enough.
But they grew up, had to come to make their own mistakes, and I could never let that happen the way it was supposed to. I also never found the same attachment to anyone else, because all the new first years smelled like food. I still don't like people on a personal level. I can't abide the smell of them up close, because I won't eat human flesh, not again, the one, that first night, was enough. The beast,t he monster, its a part of me. I love it, and yet I hate it. That was when we stopped talking, and I started grasping at strings, when I started moving farther and farther away from everyone, and lost any real human empathy. But whatever else, its a part of me.
I did some reading while doing my research, and found out wolves, when separated from their packs, go insane. I can relate. But I need to accept there isn't a place for me. I'll never be able to live among humans except on a peripheral basis, and I'll never find werewolves who don't eat human flesh, or don't run with those who do. If I'm going to start again, that means I need to make a place, since there isn't one.
I'm going to have to leave Volareska. Allanna was right, I can't go to the wyrm because of what my knowledge would give it. I've realized, that makes me dangerous to the powers that be in volareska... but not yet. I need to let it break itself down, become what it truly is, let the dark things come out of hiding, then come back someday when I'm stronger, when I can show other people how to kill some of those things, when my ability matches my potential. But that isn't yet.
I'm going to follow Karle, like he asked. Help figure out what this is, and maybe travel with them wherever this takes them until my book is finished. I promised it to Allanna, and she'll make best use of it.
Meanwhile, I'm going to learn. I've found, down in the dark places I live, I like the dark. Now I need to make it a home. My prey hides in the dark, uses it as a tool. I need to fully do the same thing, and become even better at it while I become more what I am. I tried being a leader, a tactician, a warrior, a companion, I'm not anything of those things, but I'm not a monster or a killer either. I'm a hunter, pure and simple. Its what I like to do, its the one thing that hasn't changed about me, and the wolf only makes stronger.
So I'm going to be that, embrace the things that make me better at that, the things that are my allies, the darkness, and the wolf in turn, and learn them better. When my book is finished, I'll go my own way. Not to Volareska, not to Ilthmar, those places are forbidden to me. And not to the sea either. I think I'm going to go the bandit kingdoms and start to carve a territory there. Kill a bandit here and there, give them something to fear, and haunt the roads until people, likely refugees from Volareska discover first, that if they scream loud enough, someone might hear them, and eventually, begin to make a place of their own. I don't like people on a small scale, but that hasn't changed who I am fundamentally. I just need to make a protectorate that I want to save instead of bury. Eventually they'll have their walls, their weapons, their means of fending off the dangers on their own, and likely that will be when its time for me to go back to my own land. By then, maybe I'll be ready to begin to hunt in Volareska again, when its shown its true face.
As for Allanna and the rest... I'm still in love with her, but that's alright. I can love her like a sister, and be content with that. I don't need to like the rest of them, they're familiar enough to just not hate, and that's good enough for now.
I still can't abide Telos. Him, above everyone, I hate. For telling me they were my allies, for suggesting to me I had a place I fit in and people who I could rely on, and then never being that. That illusion has cost me a lot of grief, but that's alright. Had they said something, had they shared some of their precious knowledge with the people who do things isntead of watching, maybe they wouldn't be where we all are now. Sometimes those who watch and those who do have to work together. They didn't, and now they get to reap the benefits from their new hells on earth.
But enough bitterness. I've had enough of that. I've started to remember who Sestian is, I just needed to fall far enough to have to start climbing again. I've left the dark places for the world above again, and when I return to the dark, and I will, it will be on my terms.