By: Wouter van de Zandschulp
Jonathan was walking outside. He was thinking. What was his purpose of being? Was he meant to be an entertainer? Maybe a... hero? He hesitated for a bit, but then thought of a little girl who would always consider him a hero. He couldn't resist some sort of smile.
"Jonathan!" a woman screamed. It was the woman Jonathan hired to take care of the old man, because his condition was decreasing very quick lately.
Jonathan quickly ran inside. The old man sort of was his whole world. He had tried to make it on his own more then once, but had learned to thrust on the old man to guide his career forward. He needed him. Therefore the man could not die. Jonathan had promised to himself the old man would not die. How could he, all of a sudden? He always was the one thing to depend on, so he was to keep alive as his last resort.
As stubborn as Jonathan was thinking this, it all went down when he saw the old man. His condition showed not to be good. The great fear of losing all came along, once again.
"DO NOT DIE ON ME!" Jonathan couldn't help shouting.
The old man shook his head.
"Jonathan... Jonathan... WHY do you think I guided you... cough..."
Jonathan looked at him with tears in his eyes. Somehow it seemed suddenly obvious the old man could die real soon now.
"Erm..." Jonathan said.
"You always were low on confidence. But you have grown... quite beyond my own bard-skills. Do you REALLY think you still need me?"
Jonathan wanted to say: "Yes" immediately. But in the eyes of the old man he saw that would not be the truth, not the truth inside himself. So he went slowly over it again in his head. The eyes of the old man made contact with him in some sort of soothing way.
"You can come real far now... you're training is over. Just promise me to... watch yourself... do not lose yourself in petty fame... write about big adventures."
Jonathan sat and held the old man's hand. He just quietly listened.
"If you had listened quietly all the time... well... it would have been more peaceful... though more boring too..." the old man said with a smile.
Jonathan smiled too.
"Now listen carefully."
The old man looked at him sternly.
"You can fend for yourself, but find you some buddies. Good friends to keep you level-headed at times. You seem to have some heroism in you... why not join one of those adventurer-parties... they have adventurers, heroism, AND you can write about that."
"But... will I... will I..."
Jonathan had loads of questions. Won't that be terrible dangerous? Would they want him to join? What purpose could a bard among battling heroes have?
He saw that the old man was tired and could not face all those questions. He smiled again.
"I just hope... they don't mix me up with Gandalf in the afterlife..."
"That wouldn't be all bad," Jonathan replied. "Gandalf is quite popular."
The old man smiled.
"Bye" Jonathan said.
The hand became weak in his hand.
Some time later Jonathan saw a ship that asked for help aboard. They needed people to defend the ship. An interesting looking elf seemed to reply, even as a strangely familiar looking gnome. But maybe all gnomes look alike. If you see them at all by looking down, of course. They seemed interesting enough company.
A bit later they got asked to leave the ship in a place called Freeport. Some people tried to rob them there. The others started to fight. Jonathan knew he had to prove his worth. In his own way.
All of a sudden, all the people trying to fight an honest fight, suddenly got startled by a strange sound. Jonathan called out: "We were sent by the ghosts!"
He used a bard trick to give the impression of many ghosts circling around them, thereby scaring one enemy back.
In all his adventurers later on with Fombel, Rashnec, Dan the Great and Aragorn, Jonathan often remembered this day as the day he found out the old man had advised him wisely. Especially Fombel became Jonathan's most close friend and a person that could put him back into place whenever needed.
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