Sess 36, 229: Saying Goodbye

Saying Goodbye
Summary: Aidan says goodbye to an old friend.
OOC Date: 23/03/2014 (OOC)
Related: NONE
Aidan Callem 
Where the King lies.
Sess 36, 229 2E

The catacombs were the darkest… coldest part of the castle. The dead were laid to rest here as they waited for their final escort into the other realm. It smothered Aidan in a sense of morality, choking the breath out of him as he held it, upon coming down the last step to the rich vaults that housed the now quiet King.

Aidan had been granted access and privacy, to say goodbye.

Those steps toward the illuminated body of the king, stretched out on the marble slab and covered so neatly with a blanket, were the longest steps of Aidan’s life. The quietness of the room seemed to fill his ears, his heart a steady crescendo against his chest, his boot falls almost too loud for this resting place of the King.

By the time he crossed the room, to stand near the departed Callem, Aidan felt the crushing power of this loss tighten his chest and fill his eyes with moisture that refused to fall. He looked upon the great man that he called friend, that he spent hours playing chess with and laughing. All those youthful adventures, the competition, and yes, the envy. Everything compiled, all memories. The ache was profound.

“Damn you Callem…” he looks up at the ceiling as his eye lids close, keeping back the agony. They kept dying around him, those he grew up with, those he had spent his golden years with, those that he had ridden into battle with, faced enemies with, and shared wondrous moments of joy and success with. All of it, seemed not to matter without this great King now to serve.

Finally a tear escaped and he bent to his knee, bowing his head, putting his hands together in prayer, resting against his forehead as he let himself go. What did any of it matter now? All that they had fought for. All those who had perished before Callem and in service to him… what did it matter? Without the great man to lead them all, what would it matter? The old were to be swept underneath the rugs and forgotten, as some portrait on a wall, some statue that people would one day wonder who it was.

A great roar stirred in him and before he knew it, he punched the ground as hard as he could. He failed Callem. He hadn’t been there to protect the man in his final hours. It wasn’t supposed to happen this way. They were supposed to live until they were old and gray, happy with their wives, happy with their lives… and yet, misery always seemed to overshadow any hint of happiness.

What happiness he was supposed to have, now seemed as doomed as the King that laid upon the stone slab, in the depths of the castle, waiting to be released into the realms of the Gods. Lifting his eyes from the floor proper that now sported some blood for knuckles split and cracked, Aidan looked at his fallen King, the only one in which he bent a knee to, the one that oversaw his own coronation as Duke of Lakeshire, the one that presided over his wedding to Isys Crawford, and shared a cigar at the birth of Hadrian.

“Old… grey men we were too be, watching our children have children,” he lets his head fall again, clenching his eyes tightly together as he growled again and hit the floor further, one more time to properly injure a hand. Not that it mattered. Nothing mattered. Without Callem there, the world would turn in on itself. Men would start clawing for titles and belittling themselves to work favour with the new King. All of it, was at an end. A great chapter had come to a close, a lifetime coming to a close. His own mortality setting in.

“I never thought I’d have to go on without you…” he laughs sardonically, pushing up from his knees now, “… and your threats of feeding me to the sharks, old friend.” He sighs and rubs at his eyes, grunting at his own weakness yet again. “You should’ve listened to me… You should’ve come to Lakeshire, to see my daughter wed. You should’ve stayed there with me and laughed with me on the good times. You should’ve listened.” He shakes his head regretfully, “How I’ll miss the talks we had,” His hand goes to rest on Callem’s shoulder. A long sigh, “In time I should come to serve you again. In the next life and I pray to the Gods I do not fail you as I failed you in this life.”

“Forgive me my King.”

He waited, for an answer which would never come, redemption too late to receive. Only the numbing ache of limbs falling to sleep would rouse him from his silent vigil of regret. Then, he would leave. As everyone else has, stopping for a moment, with a last look back. Life as he had lived it for all those long years, twenty seven of them, was over.

What happened now as he walked up the stairs, was unwritten.

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