A/N: Here it is! The final chapter! Thanks to all who reviewed, and there's more notes at the bottom. Enjoy!
I just wanna feel real love
Feel the home that I live in
I got too much love
Running through my veins
To go to waste
I just wanna feel real love
In the life ever after
There's a hole in my soul
You can see it in my face
It's a real big place
Come and hold my hand
I wanna contact the living
Not sure I understand
This role I've been given
Not sure I understand
Not sure I understand
Not sure I understand
Not sure I understand…
- Robbie Williams, Feel
My eyes snapped open. I saw nothing. But then, I was nothing, right? Nothing but…but what? What was I?
And if I was nothing, how could I see? How could my eyes be open? Was I in heaven? Or hell, maybe? Or was I stuck in limbo somewhere, torn between worlds?
Too many questions…my head felt too full, too cramped…where was I? I blinked my eyes. And I saw.
It was a bedroom. But not my dolphin bedroom. This bedroom had blood red walls and a red wine coloured carpet. I glanced at the covers thrown over me. The duvet was burgundy with gold mystic suns, moons and stars. The same pattern was littered on the pillowcase.
This was not my bedroom.
I sat up feebly, my eyes darting around, clutching my duvet to my front. This was so different to the pink and blue bedroom I knew I had. With the dolphins and the wolves – instead, there seemed to be numerous birds of prey – eagle ornaments, posters of eagles and falcons. And the room was an entirely different shape, for fucks sake! So what was it?
I stood up, my legs shaking, and made my way over to the pine desk that held the computer, studying it for some sign of recognition. The computer didn't look familiar – the monitor was bigger than I remembered, with stickers around the edge (some of them being self reminder notes, including one that said 'don't be a pillock, DO NOT forget to call Annaree'). There were two owls on top of the monitor – one a fluffy snowy owl teddy, the other a rubber/plastic toy of a snowy owl. On top of my computer tower was a tawny owl teddy. The desk itself was littered with miscellaneous items – a box of small square pieces of notepaper, a stationery system holding writing implements, a hairbrush with strands of dark hair caught in the bristles…
I frowned at this and reached out, picking up the brush and pulling the strands out. It certainly looked like my hair. I continued to glance around, spotting all sorts of weird things, including a hidden stash of Baileys Irish Cream under my desk. At long last, my eyes noticed an odd bump on the desk under a messily strewn black t-shirt. I moved the t-shirt aside, and picked up a photo frame. It was of me, with…Berry?
My eyes widened.
I had died at Helm's Deep.
So where was I? Had I somehow been catapulted back to my world when I'd died? Was my mission there to simply die, so that I could come back to this world? What was going on?
Where was my love, melamin, mi amor, my Legolas?
No. It hadn't been a dream. It couldn't have been a dream!
But every piece of evidence suggested this.
Tears of desperation welled in my eyes. It couldn't have all been a dream, not something so real. I had come to love Legolas, I'd loved him so much. It was too cruel.
I ran to the wardrobe and flung the door open, looking into the mirror. I looked exactly like I had in Middle Earth, except that I was wearing jeans and a jumper. I'd fallen asleep in my clothes. Not just that, but my eyes looked puffy, as though I had been crying, with eyeliner smeared under them and faint black lines on my cheeks – tear tracks mingled with makeup.
It can't have been a dream…it can't have…
I was wearing the necklace Galadriel gave me! The ivory claw clasping the blood-red stone had been resting inside my jumper until I noticed the chain and wrenched it out almost violently. I almost whooped with delight, but froze.
My eyes flicked to a corner of the mirror. A picture of me and a boy who looked vaguely familiar. I reached out and pulled it off the mirror, turning it over in my hands. Written on the back, in my handwriting, it read: Andariel and Lewis.
Memories flooded back to me. I wasn't Carrie. I was Andariel. Carrie was…a dream. I stumbled back, hitting the back of my legs on the bed and slumping onto it, staring wide-eyed at the picture. The boy…was my brother Lewis. He had similarities, though he was slightly different…and I remembered his personality…whoever I was now remembered his personality…he was Jack.
Carrie had all been a dream. So had Legolas. The reason I was wearing the necklace…it was a gift. A gift from a friend of the family. I remembered that now.
I stared at my bedside table. Sitting on it was a dog-eared copy of the Lord of the Rings trilogy, a bookmark protruding from halfway through the thick book. And I felt my heart plummet. I had read the book before sleeping. I'd had a tough night because…because of an argument with my boyfriend. I hadn't wanted to sleep with him, and he'd gotten angry. So I'd come home. Read for a while, then fallen asleep.
Then dreamt about the love of my life.
"This isn't possible," I whispered. "He was so real…he was mine. Why was he taken away from me?"
And another thought hit me in the stomach. How can I live if I can't have him? He was my soul mate…
Certainly, I'd had dreams where I'd met Mr Right. But none of them had been so real, so vivid, so sensational…
And I'd topped the lot with this one. And in doing so, I'd killed myself. There was no Carrie. There was only Andariel.
There was a knock at the door, and it swung open. In walked Rosen. I stared at her, momentarily stunned, before I shook my head. She wasn't Berry. She may have looked similar – but she couldn't have been. Surely…? It's just a dream similar to Dorothy's, in the Wizard of Oz, I tried to tell myself, but it hurt. God, did it ever hurt.
"Come on, Andy, get your butt into gear!" Rosen ordered, grinning like a loon, not looking at me but going to the window to throw open the curtains. "Get changed! We gotta get to London for the Lord of the Rings premiere."
I winced. The premiere. Lord of the Rings had been made into a movie.
I burst into tears.
"Andariel…?" If she hadn't noticed my state before, she certainly did now.
I buried my face in my hands, and between sobs, I found myself saying, "Carrie…Carrie…"
"Who?" Rosen blinked, and she sat next to me, on the bed, putting an arm around my shoulder, obviously confused at my state. And it was like this that I blurted out everything about the dream – everything. By the time I was finished, I'd gone through half a loo roll from wiping my eyes and blowing my nose.
Rosen was silent for a moment, just studying me.
"Do you think I'm crazy?" I asked shakily, tearing a piece of tissue up nervously.
"Of course not," she replied. "But…that dream seems a little too complete, a little too life-like to have just been a dream, if you get my meaning."
"Oh, I hear you alright," I sniffled. "Jesus, I hear you."
"And you really loved Legolas." I nodded. "Which is amazing in itself, because you've never cared about any man in such a way, bar your brothers and father." I nodded again, a slight smile on my face.
"I was trying to tell myself the dream was because of all this Lord of the Rings movie hype," I muttered, shaking my head. "But…it's too real, Rosen. I really feel as though I've lost something." That was an understatement. It was as though I'd lost my right hand and could never sign my signature again (unless I trained my left hand, of course, but that just ruined the analogy).
"I…don't know what to say to you, Andariel," Rosen whispered. "Except that anything is possible. You yourself have dreamed about things you couldn't possibly know about and found out that they were true. Predictive dreams. Anything is possible."
Anything is possible…more tears slipped down my cheeks as I smiled slightly. Anything was possible…even my dream's events. My dream. I shook my head. Now I was being stupid, surely. I couldn't honestly be thinking that my dream was real! Now I was just being plain ridiculous.
"Come on," Rosen said. "Even if you're all freaked out over this dream, I think that getting out will do you good. Get changed, honey. Let's go to the premiere…"
It was raining. I loved the rain. But right now, I barely noticed it. Standing in the crowds with Rosen, waiting for the oh-so-brilliant actors to finally haul their arses up the red carpet, I was still trying not to burst into tears. No more Legolas, my mind chanted. No more Legolas…no more Legolas…no more Legolas…
I looked down at the ground. The rain was soaking my bare arms – the vest top I was wearing was growing wetter by the moment, but I didn't care. My leather jacket was slung around my hips, my eyes down cast. No more Legolas…no more Legolas…
I was pulling the memories from my mind. Our first time together at Edoras…him called me melamin…him hugging me as I fell asleep on our last night in Lothlórien…those eyes…that hair…
I swallowed hard. The screams of the fans right next to me barely even registered. Have you ever lost anyone you really, really loved? Or at least, have you ever woken up from a dream to discover that Mr Perfect was, in fact, a dream? It's too painful. I felt as though my ribcage had been pulled open, and my heart ripped out. My mind was like a scene stuck in replay. I was replaying every moment I had spent with my love.
It had all been a dream. Painful, but true. Too painfully true.
"Here they come," Rosen hissed excitedly into my ear. She pulled some of my wet hair back for me. I did nothing. In my mind, I knew I was reacting childishly to some wistful dream that was a true tragedy. A psychological fuck-up.
The screams grew louder around me. The actors were walking up the red carpet now. I flinched, not wanting to see my Fellowship hacked to pieces by actors, trying to be those complex people but failing miserably. But I raised my eyes anyway. My heart stopped.
No. Not possible. There they were. Good god, they looked so damn similar…no! Of course there were differences. The hobbits were taller, and they wore normal clothes. How was this possible?
I knew how. I'd obviously seen pictures of the actors somewhere, and my mind had made up the rest. "Fuck," I whispered to myself, tears welling up once more. I'd really outdone myself with this dream. No self-harm could compare to what I was feeling because of the after-effects of the creation of my stupid fucking mind. I bit my lip painfully, hating every second of watching my Fellowship walking up the red carpet. Elijah Wood…Frodo. So alike, yet so different. Why? Why was this happening to me? Why did I have to dream something that in the end made me feel fifty times worse than any nightmare ever could?
And that was when he walked up the carpet. Different, of course. Short dark hair, sort of peaked in the middle, the short hair revealing his ears. Rounded. No points. His eyes were dark, a nice chocolate brown. There was a slight growth of beard and moustache, very faint but there nonetheless. He was wearing a navy silk-like suit, with a rather garish bright blue top with black dots and a similarly daring tie. Very weird choice of clothing, but I didn't really mind. I was too busy gaping. Despite these differences, everything was the same. The same build, the same face shape, the same smile.
I was slowly dying inside. I had seen a picture of him somewhere, no doubt, and made him into the most perfect person in the world for me – someone I could love. I shook my head, biting my lip harder, drawing blood. His name echoed in my head – I'd obviously heard it somewhere. Orlando Bloom…
I had to leave. I couldn't stand this. I turned to leave, when he looked right at me. It was all I could do to look back. Sure, his eyes weren't blue. But they were the same shape, and they were still very enticing – and it made me feel horrible just looking at them. Brown eyes.
That were wide with shock.
I frowned. Shock? Yes, he looked shocked. His eyes were wide, and he'd just frozen where he was. He looked as though he was trying to think logically, but wasn't getting very far. His eyes darted down, and seemed to grow even wider. I followed his gaze.
There, across my upper arm, was a nasty long scar. Supposedly, I'd been born with it. But my dream had told me otherwise. My dream had told me it was a self-inflicted wound in Moria.
I glanced back into his eyes, seeing the shock – and the pain. There seemed to be tears in his eyes. "No no no no no no no no…" I kept repeating this to myself quietly, watching as a fellow actor – Merry, my heart told me, but my mind said 'Dominic' – rested his hand on the small of Orlando's back and led him inside the building, but his eyes didn't seem to leave me until he was finally past the door. I let out a breath I hadn't realised I'd been holding.
"Damn, that was great," Rosen laughed. She glanced at me. "Are you okay?"
"I…will be," I said eventually, forcing a smile to my lips.
"Do you have cramps?" She asked.
"What? No, why?"
I flinched, and rolled my eyes exasperatedly.
"Andy, you're as white as a ghost."
"Aren't I always," I replied hollowly. "Look, Rosy, I'll meet you at the Thistle and Crown in a while, okay? You'll be meeting Chuck there anyway. I'll be there soon."
Rosen gave me a worried look.
"Trust me, darlin'," I said softly. "I need a few moments to clear my head."
She nodded. "Be careful, honey." With that, she patted my shoulder, and walked off. I took a deep breath, before heading off in an opposite direction. I came to a small park, that was surprisingly empty. I'd have thought the fan girls would flood here for a quick piss-about before going back to mob the poor actors again.
The actors. Exactly the same as the Fellowship had been.
"In my dream," I said aloud.
Carrie had been tough. Even when she'd been caught in her lowest moments, she'd made snappy retorts; she'd been able to define what was real and what wasn't.
I was a broken woman. One dream and I'd been smashed to smithereens. One simple fucking dream and I was thinking that my life wasn't worth living. One dream where someone so perfect had loved me – or at least, my mind's simulation of me. And I'd loved him – and we were perfect, we were happy despite the situation we were in. And it was all a dream.
It was mystery as to why Orlando had looked shocked. Maybe he'd seen the mess I was in and had felt incredible pity for the 'young homeless woman who looked like she'd been hit by a freight train'. Lovely. Nice to know I'd be able to attract pity from even the most untouchable people.
I walked over to a swing, sitting down on it with a careless slump. The seat was wet, but my leather jacket prevented my arse from taking the brunt. I clutched the chains, feeling the coolness of them send tingles up my arms, raising the little hairs. I swung the swing in lazy circles, gazing at the small puddles in the ground as the fresh rain drops caused miniature ripples spread throughout them.
This was my life. Not the life of Carrie, the one who had Legolas. She was just a figment of my imagination. Legolas…was a figment of Tolkien's imagination and had been brought to life by an actor whose good looks had merely caught my eye. That was all.
I raised my eyes to the grey skies, and sang softly:
"Empty spaces - what
are we living for
Abandoned places - I guess we know the score
On and on, does anybody know what we are looking for...
Another hero, another mindless crime
Behind the curtain, in the pantomime
Hold the line, does anybody want to take it anymore
The show must go on
The show must go on, yeah
Inside my heart is breaking
My make - up may be flaking
But my smile still stays on
Whatever happens, I'll leave it all to chance
Another heartache, another failed romance
On and on, does anybody know what we are living for ?
I guess I'm learning (I'm learning learning learning)
I must be warmer now
I'll soon be turning (turning turning turning)
Round the corner now
Outside the dawn is breaking
But inside in the dark I'm aching to be free
The show must go on
The show must go on, yeah yeah
Ooh, inside my heart is breaking
My make - up may be flaking
But my smile still stays on
Yeah yeah, whoa wo oh oh
My soul is painted like the wings of butterflies
Fairytales of yesterday will grow but never die
I can fly - my friends
The show must go on
(go on, go on, go on) yeah yeah
The show must go on (go on, go on, go on)
I'll face it with a grin
I'm never giving in
On - with the show
Ooh, I'll top the bill, I'll overkill
I have to find the will to carry on
On with the show
On with the show
The show - the show must go on." (Queen, The Show Must Go On)
"Indeed it must," a rather amused voice said. I glanced down from the heavens and gazed into the twinkling blue eyes of Gandalf. No, not Gandalf. Sir Ian McKellen. He was standing there in his suit, just plain standing in the rain, as though he didn't notice. But then, I was wearing less than he was, and I didn't notice either. I'd been numb all morning, and it still hadn't worn off. "One must ask," he continued. "Why a young lady such as yourself is sitting out in the rain, wearing so little, and singing such a song?"
"One might also ask why you aren't at the premiere," I retorted sharply, not in the mood for games.
"Ahhh," he said, and a smile spread over his face. "You haven't changed a bit, I see."
I cast him a dark but curious glance. He merely sat on the swing next to me, not minding that it was wet. It was so hard not to call him Gandalf, but I merely bit out, "Do I know you, sir?"
He smiled. "Perhaps not, my dear. But I most certainly know you." He glanced at my arm. "I caught myself on that spike once, too. But I tended to my wound before it could scar. I suppose in a way, it was a good thing you didn't…"
Spike…oh my…how did he know?
"You mostly certainly have had a rough time of it, haven't you…oh dear. What is your name, child? I can only suppose that it isn't Carrie anymore."
I sprung up. "What?! Look, I don't know why you came here or how you know this stuff, but you are genuinely making me crap myself here."
He chuckled. "Oh, I am sorry, dear…hmmm, your name, then?"
I just stared at him, disbelieving. How the hell did this actor – this actor who was a Sir no less – know about my dream? And how could he be so collected and suave? In the end, I just said, "Andariel."
He raised an eyebrow. "Andariel?"
"My father's a Diablo II fan," I said, still eyeing Sir Ian cautiously.
Even if he didn't know what the hell I was talking about, he nodded. "Well," he said, standing. "I can only guess that you desire an explanation?"
"That would be appreciated," I replied sarcastically, before remembering that Carrie had once said the same thing to Gandalf. When he'd told her of the morihin prophecy at Edoras.
He chuckled. "Yes, very good. No change at all. Well, my dear. Shall we get out of the rain? I know a fabulous little pub named the Nauticalia. Come. Let us get in the dry warmth and get drinks before you press me for information."
I could only follow him, dumbfounded. How the hell did he know? Something was very off.
The pub was indeed quite nice. It lived up to its name, and looked very much like you'd expect a nautically oriented place to look – wood panelled with ships in the bottle and anchors, life-rings, even skipper's wheels. I asked for a coffee, and Sir Ian chose a tea – we both wanted something warm, and I wanted no alcohol – I didn't want my mind to be too fogged to understand what he was going to tell me.
When he returned, he placed my coffee in front of me and sat opposite. We were sitting in a secluded booth – secluded from both prying eyes and prying ears. He took a sip of his tea. "Hmmm, lovely," he said, smiling. "They make very good tea here."
"How do you know about my dream?" I asked bluntly. I'd been influenced by my brother, Tommy…no, his name wasn't Tommy now. It was Greg.
"Ah, of course," Sir Ian smiled. "Well then, Andariel…Andariel. Odd name. Diablo II, you say?"
I stopped myself from rolling my eyes. But then I gave in to the impulse and did anyway. "Yes. Computer game. I frankly would have preferred to have been named after one of the Rogues in the camp, instead of a demon woman with her tits out and tentacles coming out of her back, but life's a bitch. Now – I want to know how you know so damn much, sir."
"Oh, please, call me Ian," he smiled. I nodded impatiently.
"I shall tell you everything – but do not interrupt. I shall move at my own pace. And I should begin by giving you a reason for my knowing. You see, I am Gandalf."
I stared at him. Then I burst out laughing.
"Something amuses you?" He asked, his eyes twinkling.
"Y-you're Gandalf?! Look, darlin', you may play him in a movie, but…"
"And yet it wasn't so ridiculous for you to believe that your name was Carrie?"
I shut up instantly. He smiled knowingly. "Let me tell you a story, and as I said before, no interruptions." I nodded, taking a sip of coffee. "Am I right in guessing that you remember what you were told in Edoras? Of Dínramiel?"
"Good, good. So you remember the events leading up to her death. Her body was caught in limbo. Her soul, however, made it to the other side. It entered the womb of a mortal woman, and was later born as a baby girl. Carolina."
I gasped, sloshing my coffee.
"Yes, Carrie existed. Astonishing, but true. Now – you should remember this as well – an Elven prophecy book proclaimed of the Dark Child, the Morihin. It was a prophecy where Sauron would find the woman who had once been of Middle Earth to carry this evil babe. But alas, although he achieved in impregnating her – with the help of his puppet, Saruman – he did not plan on her siblings following her."
I nodded, urging him on.
"At the same time," Sir Ian continued, still sipping his drink, "Legolas and his soul mate were reunited. Although, of course, all that changed when Carrie died on the battlefield at Helm's Deep. However, the world works in strange ways. The soul came back again. Under the name of Andariel."
My eyes widened, but true to my word, I said nothing.
"Although, of course, Andariel – you – had a life with fewer demons than she did. Can you guess why?"
"Because she defeated them," I said quietly.
"Quite correct," Sir Ian nodded. "Carrie defeated her inner demons whilst in Middle Earth, paving the way for less conflicts in the future. You see, not only had she been judging her siblings by their flaws, but she was also seeing the things about herself that she hated in them. Once she realised this, she was able to atone for her mistakes."
I gave him a look that clearly told him I wanted to ask a question. He nodded to me, and I said, "What happened to Legolas?"
"Ahh, Legolas," Sir Ian sighed, and I instantly felt my heart sink slightly. "He had been distraught when he heard of Carrie's death. After she had died in Aragorn's arms, Aragorn carried her body to safety. Legolas was the one to guard her body, and he was present at the funeral. He lived long enough only to complete his part in the War of the Ring. After that, he passed of a broken heart, as Elves are prone to do."
I hadn't noticed a tear had slid down my cheek, until Sir Ian brushed it away with his thumb. "Do not despair, Andariel. Did you honestly think he would let you go so easily?"
I raised an eyebrow.
"He too was reincarnated, my dear. In the young, talented Mr Bloom. As have the entire Fellowship been reincarnated as the splendid young actors in the movie. Astonishing, I know, but as I said, the world works in strange and mysterious ways. They were all brought together by some greater means to retell their tale, with only I being aware of my previous life as Gandalf the Istar."
"Forgive me for being shocked here," I said, shaking my head. "This is just too amazing…"
"I quite understand," Sir Ian nodded, smiling softly.
"Why…why does he look different, and I look the same?" I asked. "Why do all of you look different?"
"Ah, yes. Well, you see, whenever a soul is reincarnated, the body takes on some of the similarities of the past body the soul had, but the features have to change at least a little to fit the parentage. You, shall we say, were manoeuvred into your mother's womb, rather than finding your own way there. The necklace Galadriel gave you was one of preserving powers. It made sure that you would take on the same appearance, so that when the time came, at least one of you – if the other was slightly unrecognisable – would be able to recognise the other. Although, we have no fear of that, do we? Young Orlando looks fairly similar to his past self."
The necklace…I reached into my shirt and pulled it out, staring at it. I remembered Galadriel's words. For when the future is unrecognisable.
"But I thought it was given to me by a friend of my family?" I blinked.
"And so it was," Sir Ian smiled slyly. I shook my head.
"I should have known," I muttered. "Well, Gandalf, I must say – I'm shocked beyond all imagination."
"Hard to believe, isn't it?" Sir Ian commented. He reached into his jacket and removed a folded piece of paper that looked like a clipping from a magazine. "Here. Look at this, and tell me what you see."
I took it warily, and opened it up. A slight smile came to my face, as I saw the serious looking face of Orlando as he posed for the camera. "Lego…Orlando," I corrected myself.
"Study it closely," Sir Ian pressed.
I raked my eyes over the picture. So beautiful…wait. I pointed to it. "The tiger eye necklace!"
"Indeed," he nodded. "He too acquired that necklace from 'a friend of the family'."
"Why did he look so shocked to see me?" I asked. "He…he seemed to recognise my scar."
"Yes," Sir Ian chuckled. "That might be because he had a similar dream to your own – only from Legolas's point of view, of course." At my dumbfounded expression, he said, "Back when I was still Gandalf, I set a time-delayed spell to trigger the story of your love to remind you both of your past in the form of a dream not too long before you would meet."
"Why would you do that?" I asked, my voice almost a whisper. I was overwhelmed.
"My dear, your souls will most likely still be chasing each other thousands of years into the future. They're two halves of a whole. I merely wished to make sure that you both had at least one lifetime together. It would be a shame not to." He paused, and said, "Do you remember what Legolas spoke to you in Edoras? The Elvish? Ten'oio. Lye nauva alye'na ten'oio." At my shocked look, he said, "Legolas told me, do not fear. No invasion of privacy was committed."
Those words…I had heard them – no, Carrie had heard them – before the passing. And at Edoras, with Legolas. "I remember," I murmured.
"Translated, it means: forever. We will be together forever. He meant it – he knew as well as I that your souls would never cease to chase each other."
I smiled, my eyes watery. I wiped away at the moistness of my eyes. It hadn't been a dream. Maybe if I had found out under different circumstances, I wouldn't have been happy. But I realised that Legolas was here too. And he knew who I was. The only question being, would he still care? He was an actor now, a famous Hollywood hottie. And I was still the girl next door. Or at least, the girl who's as common as muck.
"Do not worry yourself, my dear," Sir Ian said, smiling at me kindly. "I am certain he still loves you. Souls don't just forget. Without my assistance, you both would have felt something, even if it wouldn't have been as strong."
I nodded, for lack of anything better to do. I was Carrie. Orlando was Legolas.
"I really must leave now, Andariel," Sir Ian said, rising to his feet. "And I before I leave, I must comment on one thing. You, child, are exactly as I remember you. Both as Dínramiel and as Carrie. Though more as the latter." A smile crinkled his eyes in the corners. "Anyhow, I must be leaving. You see, there is a certain young man I must recount this story to. He will be wanting an explanation, no doubt."
I grinned, shaking my head. Part of me was worried that Orlando Bloom wouldn't pull through as Sir Ian said he would. But it wasn't as if I could do anything about it. It was out of my hands now.
"Perhaps you both could conveniently bump into each other later? Around four-ish, perhaps?"
I chuckled, knowing what he was talking about. I looked at my watch. It was about three o'clock. "I'll probably be at the Thistle and Crown with my mate," I said.
"Perhaps I should take down your number anyway?" He suggested. I gave him a suspicious look, and he laughed jollily. I picked up a napkin, and when I couldn't find a pen, I removed my eyeliner pencil from my jacket pocket and scribbled my number down, writing 'Andariel' above the number. I handed the napkin to him.
"Good, good," Sir Ian smiled. "Well, off I go to tell Mr Bloom everything that I know. I shall be seeing you, I suspect."
I nodded to him, and as he moved to leave, I said, "And, Ian?"
He glanced back at me.
"Diola lle," I grinned.
"Lle creoso, Andariel, lle creoso." And with that, he left.
I stared at the cup for a moment. The story made perfect sense. As much as anyone else would have called Sir Ian a crackpot, deep inside I knew what he had said was true. I felt it.
With a smile, I stood up and prepared to walk out into the rain, when I paused. I unwrapped my jacket from around my waist and shrugged it on. Then, with a speed I rarely had, I ran out of the pub, through the rain, and all the way to the Thistle and Crown.
You think you're in
Like it's a real sure thing
But every time you fall
You get yo' ass in a sling
You used to be strong
But now it's "ooh baby please"…
I pushed open the door, walking in to the nicely lit pub, the warmth welcoming me. It wouldn't have before – I would have found the warmth as miserable as I had been. But I wasn't miserable anymore. Wary and worried, maybe. But not miserable.
Rosen spotted me, and left Chuck and some other people at the table, running over with a worried expression on her face. "Jesus Christ, Andy, where've you been?"
I grinned at her. "Rosen, you would not believe what has happened to me…"
'Cause falling in love is so hard on the knees…
A/N: There! That's this story done with. It's sort of odd to finish it, seeing as it occupied a lot of my time. But hey – a lot of people have been asking for a sequel, and though I'm not gonna say anything more, this is what I will say: there will DEFINITELY be another story related to this one, and it will be called Ilfirinamin, so, if you keep your eyes out, the saga will continue *wink*. Thanks again, and I'll hopefully see you during Ilfirinamin. There is also a story co-written by myself and Bianca *wink* called I'm Your Fella, Cinderella! And you can find it under her author name of suziefox.