The Final Lesson

Over the course of my forays into the countless realms of the Multiverse, courtesy of those illustrious folk knows as Fantasy authors, I have learned many things: the great potential for good and ill in humanity and that bravery is working through, rather than the absence of, fear, to name but two. 
But, most importantly, I learned that the happiest ending an author can write is not written in ancient runes nor is it the result of a mighty piece of magic. It is not a vanquished evil, nor a kingdom won, nor even the combination.
Indeed, the happiest of all endings is not arcane in the slightest, nor something born out of ancient days and dreams out of myth.

"I have lived on the borders, my real face unseen, 
but where I go now has no boundary but dreams. 
Walk with me, walk with me out of this night, 
for you are my love, and you are my light." 
- Victoria Hanley's Dreamwen song

Aye, the most important thing Fantasy literature has taught me is that the happiest ending is a wedding – and the more the merrier!! Fantasy's greatest lesson is dual: love is the highest law which nobody has the right to deny; and that across the whole of the Multiverse and through all the incomprehensible reaches of Faerie, there are no words more magical nor forceful than "I love you."

"Love supplies a kind of strength that can withstand even death." - Terry Brooks

"To love is never wrong. It may be disastrous; it may never be possible; it may be the deepest agony. But it is never wrong." - Cadvan of Lirigon

"Do not pity the dead, Harry. Pity the living, and, above all those who live without love." - Albus Dumbledore

"Power shaped by wonder and curiosity; even love. Not by fear and laws that shut out instead of inviting it." - Od

"The world is indeed full of peril, and in it there are many dark places; but still there is much that is fair, and though in all lands love is now mingled with grief, it grows perhaps the greater." - J.R.R. Tolkien

"Being deeply loved gives you strength; loving deeply gives you courage." - Lao Tzu

Naturally I am well aware that the most stereotypical Fairy Tale ending is "and they lived happily ever after", and think the scorn with which people often treat such endings is wrong. Do not countless happily married couples in our own world live this ending unto their dying breath? Of course! One need not be a Hero, Wizard, Princess nor Prince, in order to find a lifemate. Indeed, "and they lived happily ever after" is really just saying that the characters henceforth lived normal (or as normal as it gets in Faerie) and happy lives until they died. Ironically, this makes the "and they lived happily ever after" ending of Fairy Tales the most realistic part of the stories, for it is the only part which each and every one of us has a solid chance of enjoying. I shall end, most appropriately, with this quote from the author of the most old and honorable The Dark is Rising Sequence:

"For ever and ever, we say when we are young, or in our prayers. Twice, we say it, Old One, do we not? For ever and ever ... so that a thing may be for ever, a life or a love or a quest, and yet begin again, and be for ever just as before. And any ending that may seem to come is not truly an ending, but an illusion. For Time does not die, Time has neither beginning nor end, and so nothing can end or die that has once had a place in Time." - Susan Cooper


No comments:

Post a Comment