Some people don’t know what they’re doing by 26. Some people keep trying to do when they’ve been doing by 26.
The night air pricked her skin as she slid the front door open, her search having predictably yielded nothing. Above the moon battled the clouds for control of the sky, a battle which the young lady neither paid attention to nor cared about; as long as the faintest shadow of a light was near her, she could see as clearly as any man, and when light failed her she was perhaps even deadlier. Her house was one of many in a village outside of time, herself and two others the only permanent residents of any note. Lost travelers would come and go, sometimes without even seeing one of the three, or perhaps not choosing to see them. The distinction between one and the other was a topic far above her head, though two other two discussed it constantly amidst riddles and sarcasm; she preferred to focus on the now, the here, the is, not the “might be” or the “may come to pass”.
“If I told her the truth… if she knew exactly what all this was about… Well, she would be devastated. Utterly demoralized, because the truth is so ridiculously underwhelming.
The gentle hum of steel slipping across cloth vibrated in her ears as she pulled the knife away from the blanket and in front of her body, palms clammy and eyes unfocused. Her breath choked in her throat as she coughed up some spittle from half a night of sleep, her usually razor-sharp senses blurred and meaningless as the twilight faded from her consciousness. She breathed in the familiar scent of her bed, her ancient house, her sweat and hair as both trickled across her brow. The edge of the blue-bladed knife glinted dully in the barely-existent rays that streamed through the shuttered window, while the point flicked to and fro in front of her, searching out its prey.
Why? Why do I fight the battle when I know I can win the war by not fighting? I enjoy the fight, but the enjoyment lasts only while the fighting continues, and I cannot fight forever. True joy lies in the peacetimes, and the fighting should be in an arena, or in a tournament; short bouts designed for the enjoyment of fighting. Why do I desire to make fighting my life, when I know that it is not?
My opponent. A familiar foe, which I’ve fought before, many-a time. His tactics are simple, yet powerful, for he preys on mind, not body. He has won many battles, but long ago, I won the war. I closed my mind off from him, removing his greatest weapon, and though the war was bloody, with ages lost to the pointless struggle, I was victorious.