Author Note: I found this while going through my documents. I do not want to lose this piece, and so I will post it under my oneshots. I appreciate feedback, and hope that despite Soron being a lesser known character, you will enjoy it. Thank you.

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Soron admired the stone memorial he had constructed with a critical eye. It had taken him several days and sleepless nights to decide where to build it. He had wanted it to be the most beautiful, peaceful place in Til Amon, an area that would be his and Jerika's, and only theirs. The blonde haired Bard stepped back, and realized with a pang in his chest that he had accomplished his mission. The memorial stood at the edge of a meadow overlooking the city, encompassed by a grove of willow trees whose wooden arms stretched towards the heavens majestically, their leaves falling like tears unto the grave that stood before him. Jerika would love it. Jerika would love it if she knew, he corrected himself.

Soron swallowed hard. Jerika. His love. His life. He had not found her body, nor had Saliman or Hem. He wanted to believe that she could have escaped, perhaps by the sea, but a deeper knowing told him that escape from Turbansk had been impossible. There had been too many enemies, they had been outnumbered...her only hope for escape had been to travel with them through the underground tunnels, and alas she had not.

His face became a melting pot of emotions as that reality hit him. He lowered his head and began sobbing uncontrollably, shielding his face in his hands. He fell to his knees. Gasps of agony escaped him. He reached out to steady himself against the white gravestone. He clenched his fists in anger. He felt so much hurt, so much resentment. Saliman, his good friend, had lost his home. Hem was just a boy and had watched his friend succumb to the darkness. And he...he had lost something most dear to him. He punched the nearest tree in frustration. Blood trickled down his hand onto his cloak, but he didn't care; he didn't feel anything anymore. His life as of late had been like a flash of lighting: beautiful for one electrifying moment, and then its beauty faded. In its place was darkness. Eternal darkness.

Til Amon would be the next to fall. Sharma would continue his route from Den Raven northward, crushing those in his path. His School was the last before Annar; in his heart, he knew all would be lost if Til Amon fell. Saliman had forseen this, and had hurried Hem out of the City. He could not blame his friends; Hem had a greater destiny that he had to live to fulfill, but he wished that he could've had more time. More time to comfort Saliman, to speak of Jerika with the only one who understood his pain. And now, he had no time to prepare for another battle. A battle that could very well claim his life.

He studied the dripping blood. "At least this pain I can deal with." His head pounded, and he felt sick with disgust. He had so easily given up hope for Til Amon, had so quickly denied the strength the city and its people held. He let his thoughts linger back to those waiting for him inside the city. He saw their vexatious faces in his mind, and the expression they held when he had told him he needed time to think. They had not objected, but they had been fearful of being left alone. He knew they would need guidance, a strong leader. He knew that he could help save his home. He could not afford to be a coward. He would be brave for Jerika. He had to. It would avenge her death.

He found the strength to stand up, his legs wobbling slightly under his weight. He wiped his face with the back of his hand and took one last look at the grave. "My dear Jerika...I did not think I could live without you. I thought I would die, that I would be unwilling to live another day. But in your death I have found strength. Strength to defend our people. You have taught me so much."

He looked back towards the School. He could heard the laughter of children carried on the wind and the smell of fresh bread rising in the ovens. Cows bellowed in the nearby pastures, and chickens squawked in protest. There was so much life everywhere that Soron was surprised to feel relief. Death was not so permanent when life continued on. He knew that as long as this place survived, as long as he remembered her, Jerika would never die.

He knew what he had to do and he began walking away from her grave. "Goodbye my love."

He didn't stop to look back.