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The Light counteth thy tears.


The light cast from the torch in her hand flickered gently as Elizabetha trod down into the crypts, walking slowly to a chamber below the Cathedral of Light. It was night, but despite her weariness, she couldn't sleep. Treading silently, she stopped at a small wooden box, and its mere sight made her stomach churn in grief and already the tears were swelling in her eyes. She put the torch onto an empty stand hanging on the wall, and let her hands stroke the box. Silently she recollected the person, whose head resided within this box. "Dywana," she whispered, her voice half-choking on the lump in her throat.


The small bruises on her hands reminded her of her journey to Ashenvale, which according to the confession of Dywana's murderer, was the place of her death. Elizabetha had indeed found it to be true, but had found no corpse. Grimacing in mental pain, she felt angry at the circumstances for her Sister's death, and kept asking within her heart if she could have done more - if she could have prevented this untimely death.


"Dywana..." she whispered again, a tear running down her cheek. "Why...didn't you speak to me...? Why didn't you open yourself...to me?" Uttering a sigh of grief, Elizabetha slowly ran a hand across the wooden box, before balling it into a fist, anger coursing through her, but was swiftly brought under control. She swallowed hard and reminded herself. The past is the past... Dwelling on the past generates hate for past trangressions... Hate prevents growth... Hate leads to despair, which also prevents growth... She sobbed, allowing the tears to flow. Why...must I always cry? she asked herself mentally.


Elizabetha feel down on her knees, covering her eyes with her one hand. She felt a moment of despair, as she suddenly felt as though she didn't understand even herself. Why did she indeed cry? Was it lack of strength? Lack of control? Was she weak as some had claimed?


"Light, give me strength..." she prayed, looking up at the wooden box - its sight only prompting more tears.


And she wondered - she had said her farewell by bringing that lock of hair to Feathermoon Stronghold, which had been Dywana's destination. She had said her prayers there, hoping that her Sister in the faith had found peace in the Light. Yet the recent truths that had surfaced regarding Dywana's demise had made her uncertain. The Lady had confessed to her of having fought her Sister ere the murder. Granted, the Lady had gone out to speak to Dywana, and met hostility.


And that hostility was breaking Elizabetha's heart.


She tried to remind herself that Dywana had begun to see the error of hatred - that she had embarked on a journey to Feathermoon Stronghold to learn of the Elves, and not prey on them.


Yes, she knew that Dywana had killed at least one Elf. She knew that. Yet her love had made her overlook, deny, refuse to believe. But no more.


And the truth hurt more than any sword that had pierced Elizabetha's flesh.


Sobbing turned to a wail, and again she scolded herself at her weakness - at what was said to be her weakness.


Minutes passed as the tears flowed in a steady stream onto the cold, pitiless stone floor, and the uncaring torch cast shadows in the dark crypt.


Then, for some reason, she thought back on her grandparents - on her grandmother as she lay dying in her bed, weakened by an illness that had refused to let her go. And in her mind, she could still see her grandmother's pained expression, as the agony had wreaked her body. And she remembered the smile her grandmother braved in her tribulation.


"Shh...it is alright, sweet Eliza... Don't be afraid to cry, but don't worry, either... I...know where I'm going, love..."


Elizabetha stared blankly in front of her as the memories replayed in her mind.


"We cry more than men, Eliza...because we perceive the world better than they do..."


She sighed deeply, hugging her elbows and looked up at the wooden box.


"The Light...counteth thy tears..."


Pressing her eyelids closed, Elizabetha winced and curled herself together on the cold floor. "Light...help me..." she whispered.


Memories passed before her mind's eye again, as she mourned. She had said herself to be cursed with loving too much, and others, outsiders, had argued the opposite. Even Dywana's murderer had attempted to comfort Elizabetha - and she frowned. Could it truly be a weakness to love as much as she did? Or was it truly her strength?


Reminding herself, she whispered, "Love is a two-edged sword..."


Feeling a sense of strength flooding through her, she gathered herself and slowly rose from the stone floor, again beholding the small wooden box containing the head of Sister Dywana. When the sun had risen, she would take the box and see to that its content would be placed with the body, which had been saved from the animals of Ashenvale. And at that thought, a moment of gratitude filled her mind. "We will put you to rest, my darling Sister," she whispered, semi-hugging the box. "You shall rest with your family...and I pray...oh, I pray that you rest in the Light...free of hate, despair and grief...and all this...tribulation that I suffer." Sniffing a little, she kissed the box and retrieved the torch.


Before walking up the stairs leading out of the chamber, she turned and looked at the box. "The Light counted your tears, Sister..."


Elizabetha wiped her cheeks, and left the room containing the box, which deprived by the torch was engulfed in darkness, silently hiding the stony floor - wet with tears.

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