Author's Note: First off, this has nothing at all to do with the rest of my story. It just has the same characters in it. Second, it is sad, so consider yourself warned. In my opinion, the poem The Highwayman is even more of a tearjerker than stupid whiny crybaby Romeo and Juliet (biased? Not me!). Anyway, this is a special little poem-fic thing that I wrote especially for all the loyal readers of my End of the Road series and my two friends from my RPG who are reading this. Wild and Jase, you're the best! And guess what, you guys? Raven and Wild even have a guest appearance! Yay! Also, so you don't get all confused, the actual poem is the italic stuff in between the lines and my narrative part does not follow the poem perfectly as it is set in a more modern era. Okay, enough of my rambling and thanks. Please read and enjoy, even if it is sad. Hey, some people like depressing stuff.
Disclaimer: Pokemon belongs to a bunch of people who are not me. The poem, The Highwayman, was written by Alfred Noyes who, as you might have guessed, is also not me (but I think he's dead, so the poem is free domain). Also, Angel, Emery, and Wild all belong to their respective creators. Raven and Reaper both belong to me.
The End of the Road Special: The Highwayman
"Raven, I'm tired! Let's take a break right here!"
"How can you be tired? You've been riding on my shoulder all day," the brown-haired girl told her pokemon companion. The blue Mew on her shoulder sighed and rolled her eyes.
"I'm tired because I've had to hang on to your shoulder all day!" she retorted.
Raven smiled and scratched the Mew's head. "Okay, Wild, we can rest here." Raven sat down on the ground. Wild slid off her shoulder to sit next to her human friend. Raven stretched her arms and slid her backpack off, setting it behind her. With a squeal of delight, Wild jumped into the backpack, searching for anything edible. Raven laughed, then took a moment to view the surroundings. They were in an open field, marred only by a dirt road cutting across it. The road led out of a forest and to a rundown, two-story building. Raven's gaze settled on that building. Something about it seemed familiar to her…
"Oh, I remember!" she exclaimed out loud. This caused Wild to poke her head out of the backpack, a half-eaten candy bar sticking out of her mouth.
"What do you remember?" she asked.
Raven lifted Wild out of her pack and pointed towards the old building. "She that place?" she asked. Wild nodded. "That used to be an old inn. When I was little, my parents told me a story about this place."
"Really? What kind of story?"
Raven looked somber. "A sad one. You see, there used to be this guy from Team Rocket who would come visit a girl in that inn…"
The wind was a torrent of darkness among the gusty trees
The moon was a ghostly galleon tossed upon cloudy seas
The road was a ribbon of moonlight over the purple moor
And the highwayman came riding,
The highwayman came riding, up to the old inn-door.
The wind whipped through the trees, stirring up fallen leaves and sending dead branches crashing to the ground. The moon was full that night, lighting up the forest almost as if it was day. The narrow dirt road almost seemed to reflect the moonlight, making it look like some sort of heavenly pathway. Perhaps the idea was a bit overly-romantic, but Angel couldn't help it. He rode out of the woods on a Rapidash, galloping at full speed to his destination. The horse pokemon's fiery mane and tail were being blown into great red and orange tongues around Angel, as the pokemon would not let its rider be burned by the fire.
He'd a French cocked hat on his forehead, a bunch of lace at his chin,
A coat of claret velvet, and breeches of brown doe-skin;
They fitted with never a wrinkle; his boots were up to the thigh!
And he rode with a jeweled twinkle,
His pistol butts a-twinkle,
His rapier hilt a-twinkle, under the jeweled sky.
Angel glanced up at the sky. It seemed almost like every star was out tonight. There were so many more visible stars, he noted, when one was away from the city lights. He sighed. How long had it been since he had been in a city? Viridian was the last one he had lived in, and that was when he was in Team Rocket. He had only narrowly escaped from that city after he had defected. Now he could never again show his face in any city, lest he be spotted by a Rocket member.
The wind picked up a bit, causing Angel's platinum blond hair to start whipping in his face. He ignored it and pulled his black jacket around himself a little more to shield himself from the cold air. Something like a cape fluttered behind him, but upon closer inspection, it was obvious that the object was not a cape, but two leathery wings instead. One had been torn beyond repair during his escape from Team Rocket, rendering him incapable of flight. It was why he was riding a Rapidash now.
Angel snapped the pokemon's reins, urging it to gallop faster. As he did, moonlight glinted off the metal blades protruding from his forearms. The steel augmentations glittered almost as much as the stars in the heavens on that night.
Soon, he reached his destination—a small, two-story inn.
Over the cobbles he clattered and clashed in the dark inn-yard,
And he tapped with his whip on the shutters, but all was locked and barred;
He whistled a tune to the window, and who should be waiting there
But the landlord's black-eyed daughter,
Bess, the landlord's daughter,
Plaiting a dark red love-knot into her long black hair.
The Rapidash cleared the small fence around the building in an easy jump. Then it stomped to a halt as Angel pulled back on its reins. The ex-Rocket paused a moment to admire the quaint building. Then he gave his steed a light kick and the pokemon trotted up next to the side of the inn. All the windows were shuttered, and no doubt the door was locked, so Angel knocked on the shutters of one of the windows. He waited a few moments but got no response. He rode his Rapidash around to the other side of the building and stared up at a particular window. After guiding the flame pokemon right up next to the inn, Angel whistled a song's tune to the second-story window. He knew only one person would recognize the tune, and she would open the shutters.
Sure enough, the window's shutters were thrown open. A young girl leaned out to gaze down. Oddly, she had three fins on her head, one on top and the other two where her ears should have been. They were the fins of a Vaporeon. She had her long red hair over one shoulder and it looked like she had just been braiding a dark red ribbon into it. Braiding that kind of ribbon into one's hair could only mean one thing—it was a symbol of love.
Angel gazed at the beautiful girl that was looking back at him. He felt as though a thousand years would not be enough time for him to completely absorb her beauty by sight alone. Finally, he began to speak to her.
"One kiss, my bonny sweetheart, I'm after a prize tonight,
But I shall be back with the yellow gold before the morning light;
Yet if they press me sharply, and harry me through the day,
Then look for me by the moonlight,
Watch for me by the moonlight,
I'll come to thee by the moonlight, though hell should bar the way."
"Emery, my beloved, I would like to ask for you to bless me with a kiss," Angel asked.
The girl looked down at him with a questioning glance. "Whatever for, Angel? Are you planning something?"
"Yes, my dear," he admitted. His gaze lowered for a moment, then he looked back up at Emery. "I'm going after Team Rocket. I'm going to destroy all the data they have on genetic experimenting. I will not allow them to do to others what they did to us!" he declared defiantly.
"Angel, it's going to be very dangerous for you," Emery reminded him. "You know how heavily they guard everything."
"I know, but I'm determined to stop Giovanni's insane plans. Listen, I shall return to you in victory before tomorrow morning, I promise you that. Even if I am detected in Team Rocket's headquarters, I'll return to you. I want you to look for me before dawn tomorrow."
"But how can I find you?" Emery asked.
With a gentle smile, Angel turned slightly in his saddle and pointed up to the sky. The blades on his arms glinted as he indicated the full moon with his finger.
"Look for me by the moonlight, my love," he said simply. He continued to point at the moon, but looked over his shoulder at Emery. His blue eyes locked with her brown ones. "I swear I will return by the moonlight, though hell should bar the way."
He rose upright in the stirrups; he scarce could reach her hand
But she loosened her hair i' the casement! His face burned like a brand
As the black cascade of perfume came tumbling over his breast;
And he kissed its waves in the moonlight
(Oh, sweet waves in the moonlight!)
Then he tugged at his rein in the moonlight, and galloped away to the west.
Emery's eyes misted with tears at the brave words of her true love. She reached down to him as Angel stood up from the saddle, the leather stirrups creaking. He stretched his own hand up to meet hers, but he couldn't quite reach. Emery then let her hair drop down over the windowsill. Angel closed his eyes and just breathed in the smell of her sweet perfume. When he opened his eyes again, he stared up at Emery. For what seemed like a blissful eternity to the two, they just gazed into each other's eyes.
Finally, Angel broke the moment. He placed his index and middle finger to his lips, then lifted his fingers to Emery. She did the same back as Angel jerked the Rapidash's reins, moving the steed away from the inn. In a few steps, it reached the fence, leapt over it, and was galloping back down the dirt road, heading in the direction of Viridian City.
As Emery watched Angel go, she silently mouthed 'I love you' to the fleeting young man.
He did not come at the dawning; he did not come at noon,
And out o' the tawny sunset, before the rise o' the moon,
When the road was a gypsy's ribbon, looking the purple moor,
A red-coat troop came marching,
King George's men came marching, up to the old inn door.
Emery awoke early the next day. She ran to the window, hoping to see a familiar Rapidash tied up outside. She flung open the shutters and was disappointed. No Rapidash. With a sigh, she closed the shutters and changed into her clothes. Despondently, she descended the stairs to the dining room of the inn. The innkeeper was there, already lounging in front of the small television. He twisted around slightly to see Emery standing there.
"'Bout time you got up, you lazy girl," he grunted. "The kitchen needs mopping and there's a whole sink of dirty dishes for you to wash. And after that, you can dust the main desk and start making the beds in the empty rooms."
"Yes, sir," she answered quietly. Her newest master was just like all the others. He constantly called her lazy and weak when he never did any work himself. But there was no point in trying to run away. Besides, she still had to wait for Angel to return. Emery trudged to the kitchen and began washing the dishes in the sink. She kept glancing out the window there, hoping to see Angel riding his Rapidash up the dirt road to the inn.
She cleaned all the dishes, and he had still not appeared. So Emery moved on to mopping the floor. She scrubbed up every stain and food spill she could find. When she was finished, she dared to peek out the window once more. Still no sign of him.
The sun rose higher in the sky as the day progressed. Emery took her half-hour break to eat whatever she could find in the kitchen. She stared at the dirt road the whole time.
The sun gradually sank until it hovered just above the horizon, and still Angel had not shown up. Emery climbed the stairs back to her room, feeling dejected. She pulled up a chair to her window and sat watching the sunset, wondering when he would show up. Suddenly her eyes widened and she sat up straight. Someone was coming down the road! Emery squinted, trying to make out the figure. As the figure came closer, she realized that it was not one person but many. They all seemed to be marching down the road in some sort of formation.
When the group was but a little ways from the inn, Emery gasped in terror. The entire group was dressed in black, but each had the same symbol on the front of their shirts—a red 'R'.
And the one in the lead had a strap of knives across his chest.
They said no word to the landlord, they drank his ale instead,
But they gagged his daughter and bound her to the foot of her narrow bed;
Two of them knelt by the casement, with muskets at their side!
There was death at every window,
And hell at one dark window;
For Bess could see through the casement, the road that he would ride.
The leader of the Rockets knocked on the door. The landlord opened it, about to yell that they were closed, when he got a good look at the young man standing before him. He gasped and took a step back. The leader was huge, well over six feet tall. His blond hair spiked forward and two backward-curving horns adorned his head. His eyes were blood-red with slit pupils and two fangs protruded from his mouth. His hands and feet were all paw-like and each finger and toe was tipped with a black claw. A barbed tail swung slowly behind him.
"Who—What are you?" the landlord asked. The tall blond did not answer. Instead, he shoved the landlord aside roughly. The man tumbled to the ground as the other Rockets entered the inn, each snickering at the man sprawled on the floor. The group of criminals headed directly for the kitchen, raiding the liquor cabinet. One whooped loudly and called his friends over, proudly displaying a large keg of beer he had discovered.
"Don't drink too much, boys. You need to be able to shoot straight later," the leader declared loudly as beer steins were filled and passed around.
"You want some of this, Reaper?" one of the men asked.
The leader, Reaper, sneered and shook his head. "I only want to shorten others' lives, not my own."
The Rocket shrugged. "Your loss," he muttered, tossing back his drink.
At the sight of his precious alcohol being plundered, the landlord angrily pushed himself off the floor and stomped over to Reaper. He tried to look imposing but fail miserably as he was several inches shorter than the black-clad criminal.
"I demand you stop this at once or suffer the conse—urk!"
The landlord's threat was abruptly ended as Reaper shoved a knife into his gut. With a demonic grin, the Rocket twisted the knife and watched his victim writhe in excruciating pain. Reaper let go of the knife, dropping the landlord to the floor, where the dying man coughed up blood and tried to pull the blade out of his stomach. Reaper watched in sadistic delight as the man slowly died on the floor. When the landlord ultimately stopped twitching, he turned back to the other Team Rocket members.
"All right, men! Search the entire inn! Kill anything you find that doesn't have Vaporeon fins attached to its head!" he shouted. The Rockets immediately dropped their drinks, saluted, and set out to explore the inn. Reaper stalked slowly up the stairs, listening with atrocious delight to the screams and gunshots as the inn's occupants were slaughtered one after another.
When he reached the top of the stairs, he sniffed the air. Amid the smells of blood and gunpowder, he caught the scent of Vaporeon. He smirked and followed the scent to a solitary room at the end of a long hall. He kicked open the door, splintering the wood as he did so. The room appeared empty at first, but Reaper knew better than that. He followed the scent of his prey and found her cowering under her bed. He dragged her out roughly by the collar and held her up to face him. She cringed as he laughed maniacally and called in his men.
The girl was quickly bound to one of the four posts of her bed. At Reaper's orders, they made sure that she was facing the window. Emery stared in horror as two of the Rockets knelt at either side of the window and aimed sniper rifles at the dirt road leading to the inn.
The road that Angel would travel.
They had tied her up to attention, with many a sniggering jest;
They had bound a musket beside her, with the barrel beneath her breast!
"Now keep good watch!" and they kissed her. She heard the dead man say—
"Look for me by the moonlight
Watch for me by the moonlight,
I'll come to thee by the moonlight, though hell should bar the way!"
"Tie her up straighter! She can't look like she's tied to her bedpost!" Reaper snarled. The Rockets did as they were told, tightening the ropes until Emery could move no more than her head. As soon as they finished that, the Rockets stepped back to allow Reaper to inspect their work. He scrutinized the knots in the rope, then nodded in approval. All of a sudden, he grabbed a sawed-off shotgun out of one of the Rocket's hands and shoved it right up under Emery's ribcage. He placed the end of the gun on the bed to hold it in place.
"Now remember, you try anything to warn your boyfriend and we'll kill you. Understand, girl?" he growled. He paused slightly to take in her defiant expression. Then, with a twisted smile, he grabbed the back of her head and forced his lips against hers in a rough kiss. Emery made distressed noises and tried to turn away, but Reaper would not let her. He continued to press his mouth against hers, pulling away only when he had to catch his breath. Emery glared at him, then turned her head and spat on the ground to get his taste out of her mouth. Reaper laughed at her and leaned in close so he could whisper in his captive's ear.
"Now keep good watch for your boyfriend," he hissed and ran his tongue up her cheek. Emery shrieked at the sudden action, only eliciting more deranged laughter from Reaper. He turned from her, his black coat swirling around him, and watched the road intently.
Emery felt tears beginning to spring from her eyes and did her best to choke them back. She, too, looked out the window, but her gaze was on the full moon. As she looked at it, she could clearly hear Angel's words in her mind: "I swear I shall return by the moonlight, though hell should bar the way!"
"Oh, Angel," she said tearfully, "if only you knew that hell is barring the way." She hung her head, having lost almost all hope. But then, an idea struck her. She knew how to warn Angel!
She twisted her hands behind her, but all the knots held good!
She writhed her hands 'till her fingers were wet with sweat or blood!
They stretched and strained in the darkness and the hours crawled by like years!
'Till, now, on the stroke of midnight,
Cold, on the stroke of midnight,
The tip of her finger touched it! The trigger at least was hers!
She tugged against the ropes, doing everything she could do to loosen the knots. She had worked her way out of being tied up before, but these guys were obviously professionals. No matter how much she struggled, she could not ease the ropes from her. Still, she refused to give up and continued to twist her hands every way she could. Soon she began to feel a warm liquid dripping into her palms, but she could not tell whether it was sweat or blood. She had a feeling it was the latter, but she would not allow such a trivial matter to keep her from her ultimate goal.
Time seemed to slow down as she worked with the ropes. Every second felt like an eternity and it was not like the eternity she had spent staring into Angel's eyes last night. This was a painful eternity, one she sought to bring an end to by inching her hands around the bedpost.
Downstairs, the grandfather clock in the living room struck twelve. Emery listened to the chimes, counting as they went. On the eleventh chime, she felt her finger brush against cold metal. She smiled grimly as she curved her finger around that metal. She may not have had her freedom, but she did have the trigger to the gun pressed up to her chest.
Tlot-tlot! Had they heard it? The horse's hoofs rang clear
Tlot-tlot, in the distance! Were they deaf that they did not hear?
Down the ribbon of moonlight, over the brow of the hill,
The highwayman came riding,
The redcoats looked to their priming! She stood up straight and still!
Emery's finlike ears twitched slightly. She thought she heard a sound in the night. She held her breath and listened. Yes, she could hear it clearly—the clip-clop of a horse pokemon's hooves. Her eyes darted around the room nervously, hoping none of the Rockets could hear the noise. She hoped against all odds that they would hard of hearing. But fate was against her.
Reaper, who had been leaning against the wall with his arms crossed and eyes closed, suddenly became alert and opened his eyes. They glowed a dim red as a nasty grin crossed his face. He pushed himself off the wall and stepped over until he was standing next to Emery. His black clothes kept him camouflaged in the dark room, but he could see the dirt road quite clearly. He chuckled lowly as the flames of an oncoming Rapidash could be seen cresting the hill.
"Take your positions, men. Aim, but do not fire," he ordered. The two underlings at the window did as they were told, training their sights on the rider. The others stood back in the darkness, watching silently. Reaper glanced at Emery, still smiling. "Try and look happy, girl. It's your face that's bringing the moth to our flame."
Tlot, in the frosty silence! Tlot, in the echoing night!
Nearer he came and nearer! Her face was like a light!
Angel galloped down the road, excited about seeing his beloved Emery. He could barely wait to tell her of the success of his mission. He had erased all the files about genetic engineering from Team Rocket's computers and he carried the only discs the data was stored on. And now, after so long, he would be able to settle down with her. He would take her away from this wretched inn and they could live happily together, far from Rockets and slave masters.
He smiled when he rode over the hill. Angel could see Emery waiting for him in her second story room. She was standing in the window, no doubt pleased to see him riding towards her.
Her eyes grew wide for the moment! She drew one last deep breath,
He was close enough now, Emery decided. There was no way he could miss her signal. She glanced fearfully at Reaper, but he paid her no attention. His focus was on Angel as he prepared to give the order to fire. Emery shut her eyes, a solitary tear sliding down her cheek.
"Angel, I love you," she whispered. Then she took a deep breath and clenched her finger.
Then her finger moved in the moonlight,
Her musket shattered the moonlight,
The sudden explosion from the shotgun destroyed the cold silence of the night. The Team Rocket members whirled around at the sudden shot. All looked in shock at what had happened. Even Reaper wore an expression of astonishment, almost disbelieving his eyes. He probably would have thought it an illusion if he had not been drenched in the blood resulting from the shot.
Shattered her breast in the moonlight and warned him with her death.
Reaper wiped Emery's still-warm blood from his face, staring at the dead girl with a sort of disturbing reverence. As he licked the blood from his claws, he stole a glance out the window from the corner of his eye and saw the Rapidash being reined to a halt by its rider. He smiled.
"Very clever, girl," he said quietly, then shouted at the Rockets, "Now! Shoot him now!"
He turned; he spurred to the west; he did not know she stood
Bowed, with her head o'er the musket, drenched with her own red blood!
Not till the dawn he heard it; his face grew gray to hear
How Bess, the landlord's daughter,
The landlord's black-eyed daughter,
Had watched for her love in the moonlight, and died in the darkness there.
At the sound of the gunfire, Angel yanked the pokemon's reins back as hard as he could. The Rapidash whinnied in protest, but somehow managed to skid to a stop and turn around to gallop back the other way. Angel kicked the horse hard, driving the steed faster and faster.
Angel dared not look back. In the brief flash of light when the gun discharged, he thought he saw a person in black standing next to his love. A person reflexively shielding himself from a spray of red…
The ex-Rocket's eyes widened in realization. Was it possible that Emery had been shot by the person next to her? No, if she had, why would that person be surprised by the sudden shot? It must mean that Emery shot herself. Shot herself to warn him of the person he had seen. The one person who would do something this sadistic to him and Emery.
Back, he spurred like a madman, shrieking a curse to the sky
With the white road smoking behind him and his rapier brandished high!
Blood-red were the spurs i' the golden moon; wine-red was his velvet coat,
"REAPER!" he screamed, raising his fist to the night sky and shaking it at the traitorous moon. "Reaper! I swear you will pay for this, you bastard!"
Angel continued to yell every curse he knew into the night. He kicked the Rapidash harder and slapped either side of its neck with the reins until he was riding at break-neck speed. The moonlight glinted off the blades of his raised arm. As the Rapidash's hooves kicked up the dirt from the road the flames around its feet burned the small, flammable particles mixed with the dirt. It created a smoldering trail behind the horse pokemon and its rider. It was as if the pair were racing from out of the gates of hell.
Inside the inn, Reaper shoved the other Rockets aside until he was standing directly in front of the window. With a blood-curdling howl, he ripped the bloody shotgun from its resting place beneath Emery's chest. With practiced precision, he raised the gun, aimed, and fired.
When they shot him down on the highway,
Down like a dog on the highway,
And he lay in his blood on the highway, a bunch of lace at his throat.
Angel did not even see the shot coming. He heard the gun fire, but that was it. He was hit by the shot directly in the back of the neck. The force of the shot make him pitch forward, then he fell off the Rapidash sideways, his body rolling several feet before finally stopping. The horse pokemon ran into the forest and disappeared.
The body of the ex-Rocket lay on its stomach as blood pooled around it. In that dark night, only one thing glittered in the road. The fall had knocked Angel's necklace from under his shirt. It was a simple gold chain, but it was ornamented with something else. Instead of a pendant, it had a diamond ring hanging from it—an engagement ring. Engraved on the inside of the ring, it read "For my beloved Emery."
The diamond's twinkling light was soon extinguished as it was submerged in blood.
"…And that's the end," Raven finished. She looked down at the blue Mew, who seemed far more subdued than she usually was.
"But…But isn't there a happy ending?" Wild asked.
Raven shook her head. "No, that's it. Sometimes things don't have a happy ending, Wild."
Wild frowned. Then she climbed back up on her human companion's shoulder. "I wanna go. I don't wanna stay here. It's too sad."
"Okay," Raven agreed, standing up. She shouldered he backpack and headed off again towards the direction of the nearest town. It was getting dark anyway and she wanted to find a pokemon center to stay at. She took one last look at the rundown inn.
Perhaps, she thought, there still is hope for a happy ending.
Still of a winter's night, they say, when the wind is in the trees,
When the moon is a ghostly galleon, tossed upon cloudy seas,
When the road is a ribbon of moonlight over the purple moor,
A highwayman comes riding,
A highwayman comes riding, up to the old inn-door.
Raven and Wild had long since left the field with its dirt road and dilapidated inn. The wind was whistling through the trees of the forest, stirring dead leaves from the ground. A full moon cast its cold light upon the entire scene. Had anyone been there, they would have been able to see small dust clouds being kicked up on the road by some invisible entity. Slowly, very slowly, a translucent Rapidash became visible as the one responsible for the dust clouds. Instead of a fiery red mane and tail, its flames were icy blue and white. On its back rode a figure dressed in plain gray clothing. The figure had leathery wings flapping behind it and metallic blades on his arms, though the blades did not reflect any light.
The spectral Rapidash and rider slowed from a gallop to a walk as they entered the yard of the old inn. The pair stopped beneath a specific window. The rider whistled, though the sound was exactly the same as the wind whispering through the tree branches.
From the window, another figure leaned out. The shutters were cracked and broken, but she paid them no heed as she could move right through them. She gazed down lovingly at the visitor. Her hair was over one shoulder and it looked as though she had been in the process of braiding a dark red ribbon into her hair around the Vaporeon fins on her head.
The rider stood up straight in the stirrups, reaching for the woman's hand. She reached down to him. This time, they were both able to grasp each other's hand. And there they stood, the entire night, hand in hand, Emery staring into Angel's eyes and Angel staring into hers.
And on Emery's finger, she wore the diamond ring that had never been presented to her in life.
Author's End Notes: Aww! I'm practically in tears now (I'm not kidding, this poem is so damn sad!). I hoped everyone else liked it at least a little, and I would really appreciate some reviews on this. It's my first attempt at a romance-tragedy type story. So tell me honestly, did you cry? Get a little misty-eyed? Laugh your head off at my pathetic attempt to evoke emotion? Please, PLEASE review! Oh, and another thing: sorry to all the other End of the Road ladies who didn't get paired up with that hunk o' Angel. I certainly know that I would have liked to put Varia with him, but Angel's creator and I both agree that he'd be a better match with Emery.
Unnecessary Tangent: Back when I was in sixth grade, we were forced to memorize this poem. Back then, it seemed like some sort of hideous punishment (it's quite long, as you can see) and I absolutely hated it. Now that I have grown older and wiser (well, at least older), I can now appreciate the beauty of it. That, and I've been listening to the version set to music done by Loreena McKennitt. It's very pretty, so go listen to it! Okay, that's enough of that. Review now!