Disclaimer: i do not own Redwall or anything pertaining to Redwall because i am not Brian Jacques. if i were Brian Jacques, i would have provided more closure at the end of Martin the Warrior. but i'm not, so this is all i can offer. and it's not too much of closure.
A/N: i haven't read MtW for years, even though it's my favorite book, so excuse any slight discrepancies which may occur. i have wanted to take a trip into Martin's mind for a long time now, and this is the result of my expedition. i hope you read, enjoy, and review!!!
Of Daydreams and Roses
Standing proudly beside a beaten dirt path, the newly completed Redwall Abbey towered above even the impressive heights of Mossflower, but despite its somewhat formidable appearance, the abbey was a place of love and peace and welcome. Anybeast could stop by for an hour or a week and enjoy pleasant conversation with the various creatures that inhabited it without feeling pressured or judged in the slightest.
Again: It was a place of love and peace and welcome. There should have been so much tranquility there it could be renamed Tranquil Abbey. But Martin couldn't see it that way. For all the serenity that exuded from the red sandstone walls, it remained elusive for him, darting out of the way of his desperate paws. He had thought that discovering the truth of his father, the legendary Luke the Warrior, would have quieted that annoying little voice in his heart that whispered there was something more. He knew his family now, even if it were too late to do anything, so why was that not enough? What other secret of his forgotten past was constantly plaguing him, not allowing him the rest he felt he so deserved?
Disgruntled with his lack of information, Martin finally glanced up, wondering where his footpaws had carried him while his mind was distracted with fruitless musings. He was out on the grounds, in the midst of the gardens that the Abbess had insisted on planting so long ago. The peace intensified out here, and it only emphasized the internal tension the retired Warrior experienced. No beast was around, and the perfect quiet, broken only by the breeze rustling the leaves of bushes and trees, aggravated him far more than it soothed.
In a determined attempt to relax, he threw himself at the ground, rolling onto his back and staring up at the cloudless blue sky high, high above his modest abbey. He forced his eyes shut against the warm sun and breathed deeply of the unique fragrance of roses coming from a nearby bush. The undeniable scent floated easily into his lungs and pervaded his entire being, and beneath the curtain of his eyelids he perceived a small hamlet composed of a handful of simple structures, although it was clear a larger building was under construction in the far corner. A clear brook bubbled through, gurgling down the wooded sides of the little valley until it pooled near the center.
Martin half-smiled at the image of serenity, of the peace that so skillfully eluded him. He didn't know where the image had come from, but he certainly didn't mind exploring the corners of his daydream. Letting his mind wander once more, he found his dream-self moving down the hills and toward the village, all the while walking so lightly it was as if he had no burdens on his shoulders, nothing at all to weigh him down. As he arrived at the valley's floor, he caught soft, sweet notes on the air, and he paused, transfixed by the beauty of the lilting voice. The song washed over him, cradling him in its plaintive, sad melody, and he was struck by an indisputable sense of familiarity. He could almost decipher the words, could almost name the singer. But he could not, and he found himself shaking off the song's spell and moving onward.
As he passed through the hamlet's center, he thought it was odd that no one else was present except for the mysterious singer, and his dream-self turned around aimlessly, ears pricking to locate the one other creature. It proved a more difficult task then he would have thought; the song hung on the air all around as if the very air were making music. He wandered between the humble homes, glancing this way and that, his gray eyes roving the landscape. He began to grown frustrated as he traversed the entire vale, still unable to find the singer, and he had all but given up when he neared the brook again and caught of glimpse of somebeast standing with its back to him. Excited, he hurried towards the creature, which he quickly perceived as a mouse, and a maid if this were the singer. His footpaws scarcely graced the earth as he ran, and the floating sensation increased until he halted directly behind her, still breathing lightly. He extended a paw and laid it on her shoulder, turning her around, and he heard the song cease as she smiled, and he drowned in her gentle hazel eyes…
"Martin! Yoo-hoo! Martin, mate, where'd ya get to?"
The retired Warrior jerked from his daydream, momentarily disorientated. He sat up, wisps of his dream still lingering about him, and he removed one of the stems from the rosebush, examining the bloom closely. He had not stopped scrutinizing the flower when Gonff found him.
"Finally! I've been looking all over for you," the mousethief said, throwing up his paws. "You don't usually run off this close to dinner, do you?" He paused, aware that the Warrior hadn't responded even to his presence. "You all right, Martin?"
Martin started, dragged from his thoughts once more. "Wha? Oh, yes, I'm fine, fine." He looked at the flower once more and murmured, almost to himself, "I love roses." He frowned slightly then, struck by the familiar quality of that phrase, even though he knew he had never expressed such affection for this particular flower in the past. He shook his head and stood, the rose still firmly grasped in one paw. "Just lost in thought, Gonff. Dinner, did you say? I'm starved."
Gonff winked, dismissing his friend's peculiar behavior as the heady intoxication of springtime; he knew it certainly affected him. "Aye, dinner! Let's get going then before somebeast eats it all and leaves us the scraps!"
Martin chuckled, striding after the mousethief. "We certainly wouldn't want that," he agreed. He twirled the rose in his paw, humming snatches of a sad, lilting melody.
"Whacha humming, matey?" Gonff inquired, eager to join in on the song.
The Warrior shrugged. "Nothing," he dismissed, and even though he stopped, he remained haunted by the familiar song and the even more familiar pair of beautiful hazel eyes.
The old earth gently turns as the seasons change slowly,
All the flowers and leaves born to wane.
Hear my song o'er the lea like the wind soft and lowly,
O please come back to Noonvale again.