Amaras had never liked the dark.
Darkness destroyed happiness, it fed on fear, and despair…and he was feeling both at the moment.
He was an orphan. He was alone. His mother and Father had left him. He was alone. The words reverberated through his head.
He pulled his knees to his chest and rocked back and forth, not even bothering to hold in the wild sobs that tore from his chest. His hands clenched the fabric of his tunic, and he heard it tear.
There was no moon tonight. Amaras did not understand why…mother would have said he was to young to understand. That he would learn as he grew.
He didn't care. He didn't care about anything. He could feel the darkness, seeping through him. The shadows looked like snarling beasts. He coward. He wanted the moon. He wanted light.
But there was no light in the shadows.
There was darkness. Thick and penetrating, it cut through him like a knife. Like the knife that had stolen his parents from him. He squeezed his eyes shut tight. Mother had always said that singing brought light…
He hummed under his breath, half expecting the moon to burst forth and shed silver light on the forest.
But nothing happened.
All the fear rose inside him. It struck out at him, enveloped him in a stifling blanket. He let out a wail of misery and despair.
Amaras's head snapped up. There was something glowing next to him.
An elf no older then himself was kneeling next to him, alabaster skin gleaming in the darkness. Light seemed to shine off of him, and Amaras almost smiled.
"I'm Cirdan," The elf said softly, his voice was the gentle sound of the wind whispering through the trees. Amaras loved it. Cirdan reached out hesitantly. "Why are you crying?"
His voice came out in a broken whisper: "I'm alone."
Cirdan smiled. It was not a happy smile. "I'm alone too." He said simply. He scooted closer to Amaras. "Why are you crying?"
Amaras did not want to talk about it. He looked away from the other elf. "I don't want to talk about it."
"oh." The voice was not disappointed, only accepting. "Okay. What's your name?"
"Amaras," Amaras answered without looking up.
He heard Cirdan move even closer to him, and felt a gentle pressure on his shoulder. "I want to cry sometimes." Cirdan whispered, as though he was telling Amaras a secret. "It's okay to cry."
Amaras turned to look at the other elf. "I don't want to cry anymore,"
Cirdan smiled. "You feel better?"
"A little," Amaras admitted. The darkness was not as frightening with Cirdan there.
"Do you think…" Cirdan hesitated. "Maybe we could be alone together? I don't like the dark."
"Neither do I." Amaras said, turning and giving his new friend a smile. "But it's not to bad with you here."
"I'm glad I could make it better."
Amaras scooted closer to Cirdan. His new friend was warm and comforting. The darkness did not suffocate him anymore.
"If you're ever frightened, you can come talk to me. And if I'm scared, I can come talk to you, okay?"
"I like that idea." He smiled in the darkness.
Amaras stood outside of his hut, his face lifted to the moonlight, ninety five years later. All they could do now was wait. Wait for the killing to begin again. Wait for the agony and the screams, the death, the blood to stain the ground, the fire that would burn the forest..
He squeezed his eyes shut, trying to rid his mind of the gruesome images. He tasted bile in his throat and swallowed back his disgust. Unconsciously his hands curled into fists at his sides, and his lip twitched back over his teeth. He hissed the pain and fear rising in him again.
'Amaras?" Cirdan's soft voice flouted on the breeze towards him.
His friend was crouched in the tree boughs, his quiver of arrows slung across his back, his bow was just visible over his shoulder. His sword glinted at his hip. Cirdan cocked his head, studying Amaras with his bright hazel eyes, before he jumped from the tree, landing almost soundlessly, and walking over to stand by his friend. Cirdan's hand rested on his shoulder.
"Do you want to tell me what is troubling you?" Cirdan asked quietly.
Amaras shook his head, tasting the bitter, metallic taste in his mouth again. "I can't."
Cirdan sighed and turned Amaras's so they were eye to eye. His lips twitched into a small smile. "Oh Amaras…You can tell me anything. Surely you know that."
Amaras closed his eyes, and then whispered, "I am afraid. "
Cirdan pulled him into a quick hug, and Amaras relaxed in his friend's familiar
"I wish I could make the darkness go away," Cirdan murmured in his ear.
Amaras smiled at the memory. He had only five years old at the time, so young.
He felt so much older now…
"You always make the shadows disappear," Amaras whispered back.
Howls erupted all around them, and the two friend's broke apart.
Amaras glanced over his shoulder at the army. Fire burned in the distance.
He looked back at Cirdan to see that his friend's eyes were dark. "Remember, Amaras," He said seriously. "Rember to always find the light."
Amaras drew his knives. "Are you with me?" He whispered.
Cirdan pulled out his sword in a single, fluid movement. The light from the sword sent silver shadows dancing across his face. "Always."
Amaras flashed his friend a grin. "Together?"
Cirdan's smile lit up his whole face. "Together."
They charged. He could feel the adrenaline pouring through him, making his limbs tingle with energy. Beside him, Cirdan was grinning, his sword flashing in the darkness, penetrating the shadows with silver fire. His friend seemed to glow in the darkness, the energy and strength he possessed was clear to everyone. He was so bright, so…beautiful, there was no other word for it. As if he sensed Amaras looking at him, Cirdan turned fluidly, his face shining. "Amaras!" He called. "Are you going to stand there or join the fight?"
Amaras grinned at his friend's teasing tone. Cirdan always knew how to make him smile, no matter what the circumstances were.
Amaras had found his light.