I wish I were sitting at my desk in Dalaran and I could hear the younger boys with their constant squabbling going on. I wish I was anywhere except for where I am. However, I received and urgent summons from my old Commander, my mentor when I was in the Rangers. He said he needed to see me right away. I know that we've not seen each other in years and we've written back and forth from time to time. He always wanted me to go back to the Rangers and give up my undisciplined life, as he liked to refer to it. Yes, he knew about Amyn a long time ago and I had to deal with his disapproval and anger in regard to it for many years.
One thing I do know is that when Death comes a calling, it has no respect of age, station in life nor is it a kind visitor that is going to leave you with most of your dignity intact. I'm sitting here watching the man that taught me how to be a Ranger, how to make sure that I dedicated my skills and life for the betterment of my people. I'm watching him die a very slow and apparently painful death that there is no known cure for. It's a wasting disease that affects so few that the healers can only keep him comfortable for now, until the end.
This man was like a second Father to me. He taught me so many things. My parents had given me the basics of how to behave in public, this man helped me to refine it to where I could go anywhere and be anything that I set my mind too. He taught me how to act in the various and sundry drawing rooms in this insane city, how to conduct myself as an officer and gentleman, no matter what was happening. He and I were very close for a very long time until he told me that I had to give up either Amyn or the Rangers because he intended to report my activities to the authorities if I didn't do something to make it right. He gave me an ultimatum, which is something you don't do without expecting me to react to it. I left the Rangers and have spent less time in Silvermoon than ever. He felt the co-mingling of the races was not only wrong because it diluted the purity of the races and it also left me open to be accused of being a traitor to the Cause. The Cause of the Horde.
I'm sitting here by his bedside and just waiting for it to end. He has some lucid moments and we talk about the things that we have done in our lives. He talks about his wife and family that have all died before him. He speaks of the friendship that he and I used to have and he would like to renew that. It is conditional, of course, he wants me to try to get my commission back and represent what is left of his family name. My answer was rather evasive and noncommittal. While I love this man as a Father, Mentor and a brother in some ways, I cannot compromise what I have that is important to my family.
How is it that I am the only person here with him at this time? Where are his friends and the people that were constantly coming to him and asking him for guidance and favors? In his hour of need, they have either died previously or they have abandoned him because he is of no further use to them. He's old, he's dying and he is almost alone. He has also told me that he has a Will and he has named me as his only surviving heir. How can that be?
Was he the man that slept with the Silvermoon whore that gave birth to me? I couldn't help but gasp and I could feel the tears filling my eyes at the thought. Why after all of these years would he even want to acknowledge me as his son? It would explain a lot of the things that happened between us as I came up through the ranks much faster than it would have ordinarily been possible.
I know that he was frequently at my adoptive parents' shop and would often just stop in to talk with them. They were such kind and loving people and I was almost destroyed when they died in their mistaken attempt of trying to find their daughter, Felaran, when she ran off with some young buck from Silvermoon. Why after all of the years would he suddenly decide that he needed to tell me that I was his child? Why Now!!?
He had dozed off to sleep again and I was left waiting for answers to my questions until he would awaken again. I know the potions that the healers are giving him are to keep him as pain free as possible and they surely must be making him confused in his thoughts.
I was finally able to ask him the question and I know that the look on my face told him everything without me opening my mouth. Yes, he was my biological Father and he didn't want the shame of having a bastard child to detract from his standing in the military and the community. His wife knew and I'm sure his daughters did as well. I'm a grown man and there I sat with tears streaming down my face and the only thing that I could ask was this:" Why?"
He had paid the whore well and had made sure that he knew where I was placed and befriended my family. If he wanted to care that much, why didn't he just tell me years ago that there was a reason. The reason that I have always wondered about, the reason that I was adopted. So many questions and so many answers that I am finding hard to accept now.
I wish I had been smart enough to put the facts together. Maybe a part of me already knew and didn't want to accept the fact that this man that I have respected all my adult life was really more than just my Commander , my mentor and I thought my friend was more than that. I should have known.
Well, his breathing has gotten more shallow and he isn't trying to talk as much. He skin feels clammy and the grip that is holding my hand is getting weaker. The healer just told me that she thinks that he won't last through the night.
I know that I am sitting here and just letting the tears flow freely, my chest feels like my heart is going to break with way it is aching. Why did he have to wait until the end to tell me the truth? I always thought he was proud of me for my accomplishments and happy to teach me all of the things that I needed to know to succeed in life. Why do I feel that a part of me is dying along with him?
He wants to buried with full military honors and laid to rest next to his wife. His armor is at the house where I will need to go after this is over and I will have to make sure that it is as clean and spit polished as he would have always kept it. He taught me these things. I will have to make the funeral arrangements for him and make sure that he is shown the honor and dignity with his last rites.
Why Father? Why did you tell me who you were here at the end? I can feel my own chest constricting as I see him take his last few breaths and I can feel my heart yearning for Amyn to be here with me so that she could comfort me somewhat. I am alone while my heart is breaking for a man that I wish I had known was my Father.
As I leaned down to kiss his forehead for the first and last time, I could feel my own tears streaming down my face and I could hear my own sobs. I will always wonder and will always feel that the Light has cheated me of something that I needed to know all of these years.
Why? I will always be asking myself that question. One thing that I do know is that I will keep the name that I have used my entire life, in honor of the family that truly reared me.
Now I know why I have to be with Amyn and my sons. They have to know the man that I am and that I love them with all of my heart. I don't think that I would ever want to put anyone through the shocks and the trauma that I have gone through these last few hours. Why did he feel the need to clear his conscience here at the end? It was a burden that I have to accept now and will always be questioning things in regard to it.
I want to go home, I want to be with Amyn and the boys. I need them.