a tale of two cities, a wrinkle in time, baroness emma orczy, c.s. forester, charles dickens, doctor who, horatio hornblower, j.r.r. tolkien, madeleine l'engle, original stories, short stories, star wars, the lord of the rings, the scarlet pimpernel
Call this a tribute to all my favorite characters–I was thinking back on all my favorites and I noticed that my very favorite characters all tried and failed at some point, but kept on trying. Their victories were by no means constant, and their successes were not always total.
So here is my tribute to Horatio Hornblower, Obi-Wan Kenobi, Martin the Warrior, the Doctor (though this sounds much more like Eight than like Eleven), Frodo Baggins, Samwise Gamgee, Charles Wallace Murray, Meg Murray, Sydney Cotton, and all my other favorite characters.
They all pity me. I can tell.
I’ve got all the scars and bruises and broken bones I earned by my trouble, I skirt the edge of madness, and sometimes I seem to be invisible.
Sometimes, they ask me why I’m like this.
“It couldn’t be helped,” I say.
After all, if I told them the full truth, they wouldn’t stop to listen.
Sometimes, when you reach out to touch the stars, you fall and fall hard. Not all your leaps of faith will be successes.
Of course, since they pity me, they’d never see the truth. The truth is this: I tried. I did my best and sometimes it just wasn’t enough. Reduced to this shell of a man as I am in their eyes, they would only see the futility of the struggle. Never its nobility.
The very core of the truth, condensed and concentrated, is that I do not regret one moment.
I do not grudge one bruise, one scar; not the shattered bones or the bleeding knuckles or broken skin. If I had my live to live all over, I’d do it all again. I’d risk it all. I’d step out without knowing if I had a safety net. I’d run farther and fight harder without knowing if I’d win or not. I would seize every chance, take every risk in hope.
I have lived more fully than any of them. The path of least resistance is not one that is by any means enviable. It’s safe, certainly—but it is not satisfying. Not to me, in any case.
I would not give up one second of this. I do not regret one moment of this.
Some things are worth failing for.