The Undying Lands - (chapter 52)

Nimtheryn wandered away in a daze. He was shocked and upset, as he had never thought of Ariengil as one to hate him so much. Tarma was right, believed Nimtheryn, and Ariengil would never love him again.
`I have no reason to be in this world any longer,' he shouted aloud. He looked around frantically and all of the trees seemed to blur and double before his eyes. He stopped walking and put his hands out in front of him. `Where?' he asked, not knowing what he was looking for. He stumbled forwards, his hands pushing through the air and meeting no resistance. Nimtheryn's foot slotted neatly into a tree root and he tripped up, his arms flailing and trying to grab onto something. The first thing he came into contact with was the grassy ground.
Nimtheryn sat up and looked for the tree that had brutally tripped him up. He saw it very close, yet he was puzzled by the appearance of the tree- he saw it through water. But then Nimtheryn realised he was crying. He was crying for Ariengil and for himself- two beings that would never be together.
In the distance Nimtheryn heard shouts, yet he could not tell where they came from. They seemed so far away. Everything seemed so far away, especially Ariengil and her non-existent love for him. There had been a time when Nimtheryn was sure that Ariengil would love him again, and everything would have been perfect. But no longer. Now there was no hope for them together. `There is no hope for anyone to be with me,' he thought, `if Ariengil does not want me, because Ariengil is the only important thing to me.' He struck his fist on the ground and the skin cut on the bark, yet he did not notice.
Nimtheryn slowly turned himself around and sat with his back against the tree. He grasped his bleeding hand, but he did not hold his hand in pain. He held his hand in love as he fiddled with the ring around his middle finger. The silver band was still shining as Nimtheryn stroked it, though blood was rubbed over it as well. Nimtheryn looked at the blood in disgust and wiped it off, smiling in delight at being able to see the small sun, at the top of the ring, again.
Then, scowling, he talked to himself whilst gazing longingly at the ring. `This silver does not fade; yet our love does. Why does that happen? Why is it so unfair?' Nimtheryn began to fume, but he realised his mistake as he thought of Ariengil's pretty face again. `But she loves Harma still, not me. The only way for my dear Ariengil to be happy is for Harma to live, yet that is not possible. I-'
Nimtheryn stopped and kissed the ring and, with a smile on his face, and he spoke again: `Yes, yes what a brilliant idea. She would love me forever, though not as much as she loves Harma. But it will make her love me more than she has ever done before. But how to do it is the question.' His voice was slurred and his eyes were drooping as he was speaking.
Nimtheryn put one foot on the ground so that he could lean on his knee. He rested his head and one arm on his knee and his breathing slowed. The last thing that Nimtheryn remembered seeing was Ariengil's face and her smile in a hazy dream; the last sound he remembered was her laughter; and the last thing her remembered feeling was an immense happiness and love for Ariengil.
Ariengil ran into the clearing a while later, with the other elf following her. They were unaware of Tarma's escape and they were unaware of Nimtheryn's plan. Ariengil stopped at the glade and saw Nimtheryn, seemingly sleeping. She smiled sweetly and crept up to him quietly.
When she crouched down Ariengil did not notice Nimtheryn's complete stillness, and she shook him to scare him. When Nimtheryn did not move, Ariengil giggled. `Nimtheryn, wake up.' Nimtheryn did no such thing, but the young maiden still believed him to be playing a game. `Nimtheryn,' she scolded, `stop being silly now. We have to go-' Ariengil stopped with a gasp and lifted her hand from Nimtheryn's arm.
Ariengil looked from the cold, pale Nimtheryn to her companion and back again. The elf approached her carefully and crouched down next to her. Ariengil's face had lost all colour and she whispered in the quietest voice possible: `He's dead.' She gasped and a sob issued from her throat as she stood up and stepped backwards slightly.
The poor girl watched her companion shake Nimtheryn, as though to check Ariengil's statement, but the limp form only fell onto the elf. Ariengil stepped back again, in shock and horrification, but tripped on a tree root. She fell to the floor, but did not take her eyes away from her friend.
`No,' cried Ariengil. She shook her head as she tried to clear the image of Nimtheryn from her mind, but he was in front of her and was going nowhere. `No,' screamed Ariengil and birds from a nearby tree flew away. Ariengil lifted her hand and pointed accusingly at Nimtheryn. `No. You've taken away everything now. I loved you,' she cried. `No,' came a last sob as she collapsed and covered her eyes with her arm; she did not move again.
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