Knowing that I was no longer going to be the Leader of the Kha’Ri gave me a freedom that I haven’t felt in 30 years.
Yet the last few weeks have felt more like the end of the War than the last 30 years. All of the dead needed to be mourned. All the dead needed to be removed. I was there as I was as a young Narn. Helping survivors. Helping remove the burnt ruins of homes and lives. We sang Songs for entire neighborhoods lost in the flames.
I feel guilty. None of those I love were lost. As I hold the mother who lost her daughters I know in my heart that I do not truly understand her loss. I know how I think I would feel, but I am not there. I do not have bodies to place in the caverns. I can provide comfort and maybe that is enough.
I can come home and washed the ash from my body and change into a fresh tunic. As night fell I was gathered by my keepers. My ever present bodyguards. When I am no longer Leader will I miss having my escorts and bodyguards?
Now washed and fed I am going to play fo’lac with G’Lan. I think of the people I saw this day. Some have lost everything. I have so much. Maybe after I leave this position I will be able to go back to these people and find ways to help them.
Dear Reader – I had such plans and they were for nothing!
The people voted. All of the couriers are back from as far as they could ride on the swiftest koros.
I have been voted back into the place I had looked so forward to leaving.
G’Lan, may ra’niks invade his clothing, laughed! He may still be laughing. “The people have spoken, young G’Quan.” he jibed. “The people have spoken.”
As if he had known from the start the outcome of this entire vote. I had not put my name into the ring. I had specifically tried to not be the Leader any longer. I had stated that I was no longer a proper leader. And the people ignored me.
“G’Quan,” my bodyguard explained, “To have believed yourself unworthy was to prove that you were the most qualified. We of Nar’Shal appreciate your candor. How have you spent this time? You are taking care of your people. Who else on the Kha’Ri has held a grieving parent or prepared food drives for the hungry? You are the best of Narn. We could do no better.”
I feel as if I had dug my way out of a prison only to discover I merely tunneled to a new cell. My life is still not my own. My service to my people – never-ending.
I had such plans!