For all my effort scouring the archive, the next piece I can find is but a few sentences – one can only assume that she was too busy fleeing certain death to give a full account.
“Hollister's born. Heart heart fills with joy then drops as the dread sets in. What kind of future am I offering my newly born child? Though we flee still, I know not towards what. I write this in lead that my tale might not be lost here, should I... should we perish. Twilight looms on S'iolaen, and on the Elves.
Bleak. My grandfather's birth would have otherwise been afforded great acclaim, in a world where greedy officials and literal demons pillage farm villages rather than suffice on water for breakfast and a good night's sleep for dinner in the name of the common good. The North should have been grateful they had a foe to defend against; soldiers given means to pursue their own ends lead to a betrayal of the people in favor of those who would benefit from warlike ways. Were I in charge, we would have sealed the passage to the demons' realm. Never send a warrior to do a wizard's work.
My dear grandmother finds succor, though, as she was able to continue her writing as a later point.
“We are in the navel of creation. The forest is so lush and beautiful – and kind! While kind is not a word I would normally use to describe a forest, it feels as though, since we arrived, the entire forest has opened its bounty to us. Berries on bushes, trees full of delicious fruit, and edible roots and leaves are everywhere! Why, Leolay – they're here, too, along with everyone who's left – was able to make a delightful soup with what the others were able to hunt and forage.
It's good to see family again. I would that it be a festive gathering, but gathering in support of each other is what family means. All of us, we survivors, support each other. All Elves are family. All real Elves. Damn the Tohr’mentirii.
This truly is a bountiful place. And, as Aellos and Dythiir teach, it is also where the Elven race was born, heralded no doubt by this mountainous tree, as old as our first breath, here for evermore.
Hollister has taken to the forest. He is, fortunately, a quiet child by nature. I would rather that than the opposite; the ravages of war – of being hunted – do not bear noise well. He is always wandering off, though. If I could leash the child to a tree, I would do that, but children need to be able to enjoy life while they can. Joyful memories of youth oft see us through harder times. Perhaps that's why we often look at the past through rose colored spectacles – if not for “rosy hindsight” we might not be able to cope. I wonder how we Elves will remember our flight to safety, how many painters and musicians and poets will write epics on this journey. “A child born mid flight from demons, brought to safety to be raised to one day lead the Elves” has a nice ring to it. I do hope Holli agrees.
Of the four seasons falling from this mountainous tree, I have settled on the Summer side of Autumn. I love having the leaves drifting down, there for us to crunch through, with summer fruit and warmth a few steps away. Truly, this place is miraculous.
I could get comfortable here. Far away from our pursuers, here in the valley of our creation... nearly luminescent rainbows, beautiful streams and waterfalls, the emerald river N'yleen flowing through both spring and summer, with a bounty of the waters there for the catching... things really could not be better. It might be too soon for optimism, but I look forward to having my work featured in the rebuilding of our archives, once we regain a sense of normality. Here's hoping that's soon.
(Signed Lilianne Thinnas)”
I have heard many accounts of this wondrous tree's first form, having only been able to see artists' depictions of the older Tree. One fall looks much like another, though, so it wasn't until I came across a better depiction of the Tree that I understood its nature. That my great grandmother and my grandfather lived below the branches of the chief tree of S'iolaen in safety for a time brings my heart great joy. Indeed, it pains me to continue transcribing my great grandmother's journey, as I have the benefit of hindsight.
And so, I will leave you until next time, my Journal. I shall return when I manage to gather the strength to continue.