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A Story for Tamlyn
Chapter 1 of 1
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A Story for Tamlyn:

I will tell you a story, my son, my changeling child.  It is a story so old that even I have almost forgotten it, though it is my own.  Mine and yours, of my other self, your mortal mother.  Yes mortal, for this world belongs to mortals and I am but a relic of ages long forgotten.

I am the Fae and once I was more a thing of magic and wild places than a creature of flesh and blood.  The harsh mountain valley was my home long before mortal men came to call it so.  Came they did, and those that respected the land were welcome and those who did not fell prey to misfortune.  It was a harsh and beautiful land, my son, but it was a cherished home.

I watched these mortals.  Watched them take wives and husbands.  Watched them raise their mortal broods, so full and bursting with life.  Their lives were short, but so very full, it was fascinating to watch.  And as I watched, I came to care for them, became more like them.  And one day, I came to love a mortal.

I loved him as a child, with his rosy cheeks and his infectious laugh.  Many times I hovered near lest his boyish adventures lead him into peril.  I turned away the hungry beasts and left trails to lead him home when he strayed too far.  He was as beautiful and precious as the rarest flower blooming near the summit of the highest peak.

I loved him as a youth, with his brash confidence and his downy beard.  I watched as the maidens began to seek his notice.  I watched as first one girl, then another seemed to spark his fancy and pondered which would make the best match for him as much as any village elder.  He grew strong and tall and no less beautiful.  My heart ached to see the child fade away and rejoiced at the glimpse of the man to come.

I loved him as man grown into the promise of his youth.  His voice was deep and steady, his jaw strong and determined.  When he wed one of the village maidens, I rejoiced at the thought of watching his children grow.  But some part of me sorrowed.  I loved him, you see, no longer as simply a fascinating creature in my care, but as a man.  I loved him with the heart of a woman and knew despair.

His wife was fair and lovely, as perfect as any mortal creature could be.  She loved him no less than I.  She was perfect in every way, save one.  She could not bear him a child.  As the seasons passed and no life took hold in her womb, she too, knew despair.  And we grieved, side by side, though she did not see me.  Grieved for the children that would never be.  No son to wear his father's broad shoulders.  No daughter to laugh with that long ago child's laugh.  He loved her too well to set her aside and take another bride.

And so I came to her.  A woman of rain and soil, of wind and sunshine.  I spoke to her of our love and our loss.  At first she was frightened, but my words gave her hope.  We struck a bargain, this mortal woman and I.  We bound ourselves together, by hope and love and magic.  For we had but one shared purpose.

And so it was, I came to him in the guise of his beloved wife and lay with him.  With the magic of my spirit, I placed this child, of mortal blood and Fae magic within her womb.  Our child blossomed within her body, and I watched over them with all the care I had once lavished on my valley.

The child was born and grew tall and strong.  A fine lad, my son, like his father.  My magic remained in my beloved's wife's body.  She bore him two daughters and another son.  Each was strong and healthy, never prey to the illnesses that robbed so many village children of life.  Each possessed some small gift of magic.  A bit of luck, a touch of the sight, a knack for finding that which is lost, or a talent for making that which seems lifeless grow once more.

I wonder what gift you will have, my son.  What marvel will your fae blood make manifest?  No, no, do not boast of your magic, for they do not believe such things now.  They will call you mutant, not changeling.  They will try to measure and explain your magic in terms of science.  For that is their magic now.

No, my story is not done.  I do pray that you are mortal like our Morgan.  And you must call her mother, for she is as much so as I.  That which is mortal in you is her gift.  For there is no curse greater to one such as I than to love a mortal.  To truly love that which will wither and die when you cannot.  We may fade, but we do not die.  Not truly.

My beloved and his wife grew old and frail, despite all my fae magic and that of their children and their children's children.  And once again I knew despair.  I thought perhaps I would fade with them, die with the woman who bound her soul to mine.  But I lived on, bound to the blood of her line.  I am called to whichever child bears the most of our blood, of fae magic.  And when the blood has grown thin and the magic weak, I have slept and dreamt of my mortal family.

I pray that you are mortal, my changeling child.  I pray that you will not watch those you love more dearly than life itself die again and again.  But if you are not.  If you are truly my son and Fae. I will leave you with the gift of hope.  Hope that your loves will return to you as the flowers bloom each spring.  Bloom and grow to be gathered again to your bosom and cherished more for the knowledge that life is so short.

I am with you, little one.  And I shall never leave.  I am the Fae and my love knows death, but never dies.

Chapter 1 of 1
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