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[Journal] Pages of Remembrance

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Entry 1: Meeting people…


So… a journal, a book of remembrances of past events forreflection and later review. Aeleron told me to start one of these as a way to get over what he calls my ‘fear of remembering’. I do not fear the past; I simply wish to move forward with my life. In the end though, I have never turned from his wisdom and I am not about to start. I do not suspect that this will change my view on the past… but perhaps a place to express my thoughts is not such a terrible thing.


Recently I have had to undertake a journey to the threecapital cities of the realm, gathering ingredients for whatever random poultice that Elarana is whipping up today. Mostly I think it is just Aeleron’s way of getting me out of Gridania for any real length time and in truth… he is correct do so. I am not sure why I had been so set in my place here… perhaps it was just fear of getting out into the world again after everything that has happened.


No… it is not like I had taken root in the grove. As soon asI could at least hobble under my own power I was venturing forth and going places. Helping people that needed the help and all that… so why do I feel that the Elder was attempting to actually get me moving this time? It is of course entirely possible that this is all in my head and I am just placing motives on to an action that the Elder took because everyone else was busy… I have been told I worry too much about such things.


I… digress. The reasoning behind the journey and my opinionsthereof I think exceed the point of this remembrance. So instead of sounding like a complete loon and attempting to attribute something to things I have no base on attributing things to… perhaps I shall simply discuss the journey itself.


Traveling between cities with the Aethernet of course is afairly simple prospect… a good thing to because I am uncertain of how air or sea travel would affect me. It is hard enough hobbling around the cities themselves let alone dealing with whatever the effects of such travel would be.  


I seem to digress again… why do I dither about writing theseexperiences? Am I so afraid of remembering the past that I refuse to write even the simplest passage in a journal? Besides… my first stop was all about the past… so why can I not just write about it?


I guess I cannot write a passage of that nature withoutexplaining what I mean about the first stop being about the past. Gridania… of course it would be my first stop as it was the one I did not have to actually use the Aethernet to go to. I was sent to pick up some form of herb from the botanist’s enclave on the outskirts of town. Why a runner could not simply be sent for such things… I… am questioning things again… I need to stop that.


Anyway, once I completed that task I did not actually feellike returning to my room… the day was still early after all. So I wandered the pathways of the town. Gridania has since my arrival here has always impressed me with how… ordered it is, how natural it is. It is not like the chaos of the stone streets of Ul’dah… but then in reality I do not think anything could be like Ul’dah. Here though… this place has its own spirit, it is as if the city itself is a living and breathing thing. A curious feeling for an entire city to have but not an entirely unpleasant one.


In my wandering I found myself at the Inn… the seeming hubof activity in the town outside the Aethernet crystal in the city’s center. I decided to simply… observe. I know a rather corny thing to say but that is all I intended on doing. I found an out of the way corner and sat down. Time passed as it does and I was enjoying simply watching the world pass me by when a man limped into the establishment. It is strange… one who can barely walk even with the assistance of staff noticing the motion limitation of another person before anything else… but in reality it was my need to help someone that drove my observation.


The limp did not seem to be the only limitation of theindividual however. In fact he had seemed to be suffering from a whole host of other injuries though the man seemed to navigate just fine regardless of scars, a missing eye, a limp to his left leg and a few other things that I gleaned on my initial observation.


Like I am wont to do, I wandered over to him upon hissitting and asked if there was anything I could do to help him. I honestly need to learn to be more observant of people and to keep my mouth shut when I am not needed… no… no I do not believe that is a lesson I will ever truly learn. Regardless of my reticence to do so, perhaps in this case it may have been for the best.


I mean… it is not like the interaction between myself andthis man was terrible, more draining then anything. The man had an insufferable streak to him that made me pause. Still… when he asked for me details on a comment I made, I happily provided… and then he had the audacity to crack wise after I given him the detail he sought.


To be honest I do not even remember what led us down thepath of me speaking on my experiences from five years ago… I believe he asked me about the maladies that affect me. But regardless of reason I found myself simply speaking on that fateful day. Oddly enough he seemed wholly unaffected by what little I told him… almost as if perhaps he had been on that field of chaos.


I never bothered to ask that… he did mention something aboutMagitek falling on him; perhaps if I cross paths with him once more I will ask if he had been at that battle. In the end though… it was the first time I had recounted what details I recalled to anyone outside of the grove in a very long time. I blustered at the wise crack but in the end it felt good speaking on it and not being judged.


I left the conversation feeling… oddly relieved… it was agood feeling to be sure. One I think I truly needed. It is not like I am under massive amounts of stress… quite the contrary. Compared to others I actually have a fairly easy go of it. Yes, I can barely walk and I am nearly blind but I have a home and work I enjoy. Others are not so fortunate and I do my level best to never feel down about anything because I am alive… the situation could be different had the Spinner not decided to intervene that day.


But I digress once more… I am not a fan of remembering thepast let alone reliving it. Still though… it did feel nice to be able to actually talk to someone about it. It is strange… I am usually the one who is the ear that people talk to. I guess people see the robes and feel they can trust us… which is not far from the truth.


This was no more evident than in the second leg of myjourney at Limsa Lominsa. After retrieving all manner of strange items from the Culinarian guild I decided that before returning to Gridania I would once again find myself some place to go and observe. I… realize that writing these words I seem to do that a lot… perhaps I enjoy watching people randomly flit about their business each day.


Regardless… this night I found myself in an establishmentcalled the Drowning Wench… a lovely name to be sure. Though this night thankfully I was not to be met with the need to resuscitate anyone. Instead I found the place bustling… which I suspect is not an usual happenstance for a place I believe is a traditional pirate haunt. However it was not a pirate I was to meet this night but a machinist. A curious endeavor… I know machines are becoming more prevalent in our society but I have not had much experience with them.


I decided to take an open spot next to the woman and struckup a conversation. I figured if I was there why not speak to the other people there? We spoke for a time on machines and their applications, whether such devices could be used for healing. She stated that she was not aware of any devices that would assist in healing and then went on to state that the focus was on causing harm. A sad state of affairs to be sure but an understandable one given the day and age we live in. Still… I hope that one day that intelligent and thoughtful people like this woman clearly was could be allowed to put their skills and creativity to better use.


While the discussion of machines and their application insociety was interesting, what actually got my attention more was the Miqo’te herself. She had spoken on being focused on her advancement of knowledge… a noble pursuit but not at the sacrifice of the heart. What precipitated this was a comment she made about not having friends to sacrifice for. Of course this piqued my curiosity so I inquired further.


What she eventually explained was that she had been sofocused on gaining knowledge and perfecting her craft that she had not made time for things such as making friends. What got to me was that she seemed okay with this fact. I retorted to her that having people in your life could be more therapeutic then many other things. We discussed the differences between her thoughts on the subject and mine.


I may have had the ulterior motive however of showing herthat making friends was a fairly easy happenstance as she was discovering in making one with me. She laughed at that and made some sort of exaggerated motion about it. She did finally admit however that she had joined a group and while she was always prepared for things to turn sour… she was going to give it a chance. Better then noting I suppose but still… I wish people were more open to allowing people into their lives. Yes… it may cause pain at points but the joy it brings is far more than that pain.


Though to be fair on the final leg of my journey I was metwith the example of my statement that pain can be caused. Ul’dah… after picking up minerals, and really wondering what Elarana was putting together; I found myself heading to the Quicksand. Now having been born in Horizon and being a former Immortal Flame, this was a place I knew all too well. Though this night I found the place to be fairly quiet… well… as quiet as the Quicksand gets. A fact that Ria defined most succinctly.


Ria… Ria would be the source of my conversation thatevening. I was surprised to find a seat in that place but very thankful as I found walking those flagstone streets were not the easiest thing in the world for me to do. Still I managed to find my way to the Quicksand and to the seat that I so desperately needed. I made a comment mostly to myself about the place and the woman next to me responded. As good of a conversation starter as any I suppose.


The first part of conversation was fairly inane… she seemedto break down life almost as if she was stating ingredients for a stew. It was the ‘dash of romance’ comment that made me pause and respond. Though I am not currently pursuing such things as romance, I did have to defend its concepts to her… only later would I find out how stupid my defense of the concept was at that particular moment.


Ria eventually excused herself saying that she needed totake care of something and I figured that was that, after all… the Quicksand is not known for actually making connections with people. More like… grains of sand in the wind.


However this night I was to be surprised in many ways. AfterRia left on her errand I decided to wander around a bit and see the place. It had been almost six years since I last wandered that circle so I thought it was only fitting that while I was there I made at least an effort to do so. The walk was as uneventful as I suspected it would be and by the time I had returned to the seats I found them all occupied… and that Ria had returned.


My question was a simple pleasantry… asking how her task forthe evening had gone. The answer I got back started us down a path that I was not expecting at all. But then the Spinner does act in odds ways to ensure that things happen and I believe in this case that she put me right where I needed to be.


It turns out that that task that Ria needed to accomplishwas the returning of a Ring of Eternal bonding. Here not an hour before had I been spouting on about the value of romance in one’s life and she was preparing to tear her heart out. I… had to do something. She was clearly hurting and I kicked myself for missing the signs at first. Still… it was not the end of the world… I still had time to right the ship as it were.


We talked… for probably two and a half hours, I lost trackof time to be honest. I tend to do that when I am enjoying the conversation and this one, despite the reason, was enjoyable. Ria was hurting… anyone would be in that situation. I cannot honestly relate as I have barely ever even looked at the opportunity to have another person in my life let alone go as far as she had. But what I could do and did was offer an ear and a shoulder.


She refused to cry… saying her pride would not allow her to.Pride goeth before the fall they say… I did not say that to her though. I merely attempted to get her to focus on the moment and to allow herself to feel. Pain as I had said before will happen when we open our hearts… but we cannot be afraid to feel that pain lest we become afraid to open our hearts. I am not entire sure that point came across well but by the end of the conversation, a bit of smile was upon her lips regardless.


It was in that moment that she took me by surprise… a kissupon the cheek. I… froze a moment not sure of what to do, I simply smiled and I am sure my skin become more pink then even my hair. I gave her the same statement I always do… one does not need to thank me for what I do… I do it happily and often healing someone is not just salving a physical wound but mending a broken heart. I do not know if I was completely successful… I am just glad I was able to give her respite for that evening. On a personal note… I… would not mind our paths crossing once more… perhaps I should return to the Quicksand more often.


Thoughts for another journal perhaps… this one already seemsto be long winded enough and it only covers three days of time. I do not know how often I will bring pen to parchment in this manner but I can say that perhaps… as he always is… Aeleron was quite wise to tell me to invest in such a thing. I… am finding the value in expressing my thoughts… even if it is to the blank pages of a book.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Entry 2: Connections


It is curious that I am spending so much time in my old homeland. It had been nearly six years since I had been back to Ul’dah and now I find myself staying there for the time. I guess perhaps it is because it is where I have found people. I have recently found that I enjoy being around people… perhaps that is why I was sent on this trip in the first place and why I have not been called back.


I admit some nights have been extremely quiet. The Quicksand is precisely what I recalled it to be right down to the many facets of attire that people wear in the place. Obviously body armor and traditional fighting attire is prevalent but some… The amount of people running around in nothing but bathing suits or even worse… their small clothes… has surprised me.


Now this is not to say I begrudge them their comfort nor do I judge their choices… just not something you often see anywhere else. A testament to the cosmopolitan nature of Ul’dah I suppose. I appreciate their want to express themselves and I commend them on their courage to be so… revealing. That is certainly not anything I could ever do.


Anyway… beyond the attire there is one other habit of people in this place that gets to me. I have seen so many people just… standing around not interacting with anyone. Why would you come to a public place filled with people to simply just stand there? Perhaps I am just an odd soul… okay… more then perhaps… but still it does not make sense to me.


I admit, I am not the most social of people but the idea of just standing around… maladies not withstanding… just seems like a monumental waste of time. I am not a fan of crowds, perhaps that is the reason for people’s reticence to interact, but then others do. I just do not understand. To each their own I guess but they do not make connections with people if they do not make an effort to approach them.


Though… there is something to be said for some not wishing to deal with some people who may frequent the place. The other night I was approached by what I guessed was a traveling gambler of a sort… or at least someone obsessed with money.


He approached me and seemed offended by an offhand comment I had made about the attire around the place. It is hard not to comment on such things… I would in quick order discover that it was all in jest but still, it did give me pause for moment. I do not like upsetting people around me after all, even total strangers. So when this person approached me all blustered I apologized immediately… a fact he turned against me into further jest.


Though at least he added conversation to a rather dull night. Again, the fact that people do not seek others to talk to in that place sticks to me… I probably should not think about it so much. We eventually talked about the pursuit of material gain and how that was not a driving force in my life. Odd that that seems to have been a theme of a few of the conversations I have had of late. Perhaps I really am just odd.


A few nights later I ran into an interesting Keeper Miqo’te by the name Talvi. I say interesting because she did not actually seem to be someone who would wish to talk. In the end, I found out later that she tended to simply come to the place to listen to the goings on. Perhaps that is what most of the people do… is that really fun? Watching what other people are doing? The idea of it does not appeal to me but once again, to each their own.


So we struck up a fairly long and enjoyable conversation that wandered through many subjects including material gain through the art of selling services. She apparently was a potion crafter and sold her wears through the local markets. Well… actually she did not sell them she had other people do so. I know a little bit of potioncraft… it might be a way for me to increase my funds, but I am not sure I really would wish to withhold something from someone who needed it. Perhaps I am too nice for my own good.


Regardless we eventually settle on talking about the topic of swimming of all things, more my lack of capacity of motion and how swimming helps. Oddly enough the topic of hot tubs arose and she decided she was going to install one in her home. I… think that would be a wonderful thing to have access to such on demand. Hot tubs have always been relaxing to me… I should see if I can find her again and ask her if she managed to do so.


Last night however… last night was perhaps the most interesting conversation I have had in that place since the night I met Ria… who incidentally I have only seen once since meeting her that night… I am worried… the last time we spoke she had talked about not eating. I scolded her for that… I can only hope that she has gotten back on her feet. I have never had a broken heart so I cannot know what she is truly going through but I wish I could find some way of helping her feel better despite the pain. Maybe the Spinner will give me a chance someday.


So last night… I actually got the opportunity to meet someone who introduced me to a number of firsts for me. Her name was Venora and she was a Xaela Au’ra. I had worked with a few Raen before but never have I had the chance to speak at length with them let alone a Xaela. This may be odd to admit though no one will ever read these words so why be concerned… I have always found Au’ra to hold an ethereal sort of beauty to them. I… wish I had more opportunities to interact with them.


Well… enough of me pining… let us speak on Venora and our conversation. It was such a breath of fresh air… I found that she was also a healer but of a type I had never met before, an Ishgardian Astrologian. I admit my girlish curiosity got the better of me this time and I asked her to explain her abilities. Apparently her Aether comes from the stars themselves. The idea of it… it sounded almost romantic to me in a way.


Our ideals meshed so well, the struggles that we go through in our line of work, the joy we feel in truly helping others and most importantly of all how hope is truly what we deliver to people. Hope is the balm that we apply and the strength we impart. With enough hope, anyone can accomplish anything. Literal hours passed… not that that is an unusual happenstance, the same happened with Ria and Tivali but with Venora it was just… freeing… to make that kind of connection with another person.


Her concepts are things I would not mind learning if I ever find myself in Ishgard, afterall, they are not very different from the teachings of the Spinner. Fate by any other name is still fate at work. She ended saying that perhaps our meeting was fated… I was inclined to agree with her as it just felt so good to speak to her. Perhaps I will be meet with her again as well… the conversation was quite relaxing for us both.


Perhaps I will remain in Ul’dah for a little while longer. Aeleron has not sent a search party for me and I am not entirely unconvinced this was not his plan all along. I find it strange that I am all of sudden enjoying the company of people and being drawn to it. Maybe a long dormant side effect of the Aether that simply needed the right stimulus to awaken. Regardless, I have enjoyed my time and the people I have met… though my worry still rests with Ria. May the twelve keep her safe and show her the path of happiness once more…

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