Racist Mother

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[release notes]


He'd never really liked those Elves.

He being, of course, Trenf.

Who's Trenf, you might ask.

And I might answer, “He hated Elves.”

And just like that, the story would be over.

But then you might cry and stomp your feet and maybe even kick the wall.

And because I care for you, child, because I don't wish for you to be upset, these are the reasons that I will tell you everything that I know about Trenf.

___

“Trenf was a human Merchant that lived in this town about fifty years ago,” she began, softly, rocking the baby in its cradle, oh so gently. “He was very wealthy, and this showed in his manner of dress and in the width of his belt.”

She reached into the cradle and stroked her baby's little tummy.

“And above all else, he hated Elves….

“He grew up the son of an uneasy marriage which quickly dissolved when the father eloped with a group of wandering Elvish performers. He was in his infancy at the time, and didn't really understand the loss. His mind was too innocent, or maybe just incapable of grasping the fact that his father would never return.

“He lived in joy, and isolation. His mother never let him go outside until he was old enough, and mature enough, to understand his father's choice. She knew that letting him go outside, to mingle with those who had fathers, it would break his mind. And so she cut him off from others.

“Yet she treated him well. He was always well fed, and loved, and cared for. She never left his side, as she was rich, and needed not work.

“She seemed happy to have such a beautiful child. But inside, she was torn. She had loved the boy's father, and he had left her. Left her for the exotic charms of the Elves. For the dirty charms of the light forsaken Elves!”

Her hand stopped suddenly, frozen as it was- in the middle of stroking her baby's body. Her jaw dropped in shock to hear the word come out of her own mouth, in the presence of her child no less! She sighed, and then continued.

“As I was saying, she was very torn by this. She let her emotions dwell and never gave them up, never got a new spouse to sell off as Trenf's father, but instead began to harbor a great loathing for the Elvish race. And she let it grow and grow and grow within her, until it consumed her as a fire consumes a log in the joyful eyes of a small child warming up after a trek through the snow.

“As her boy grew, he, as all small children do, learned from his primary influence, and only human contact- his mother. Everything from her, he picked up. He learned of her hatred for Elves and adopted it. He never learned true joy, and people began to wonder if maybe the mother wasn't so happy. Her child was not joyful, the rumors spread.

“And that gnawed at her. Tired of her confinement of her child, tired of the public face she was losing, she ran away from home, leaving a befuddled Trenf at the age of twelve in the hands of her servants.

“I guess I lied to you, child.”

She sighed once more.

“The story is not so much about Trenf, who hated Elves. But it should be. He should hate Elves. He never lived before. The Trenf I spoke of, he's an imaginary person born out of whimsy. And hate.”

She averted her eyes from the now sleeping child.

“But…you're what's important to me now You're all I love.”

Silently, tears began rolling down her cheeks.

“And I'd like to make myself believe that the story is about Trenf. The kid who rose through difficulty to become one of the most successful merchants ever to live in this desolate corner of Azeroth. That one day, Trenf will live happily, and that one day, Trenf will hate Elves.”

She began to shiver, but the tears stopped coming. No, she was not having an emotional breakdown after all. She grabbed her sides, clenched the fabric of her rich gown tight.

“Because…”

Her lip quivered.

“Because…”

Her eyes, earlier so soft and gentle, portraying love and caring, warm beacons for the baby to look to, now were hard and cold, full of bitter hatred.

“Because that mother, she couldn't kill her hatred…”

Suddenly, all movement stopped, until she was just sitting there, hands on lap, looking down at her child.

“She still…she still hates Elves…”

The wall-mounted candles melted slowly, the soft glow emitted by them calming the taletelling mother. The baby, oblivious to all, rolled over in his cradle.

“And…that's why…”

A flicker, and one candle went out.

“That's why I told you this story. And that's why I named you Trenf.”

The second candle died out, and the room was flooded in pitch darkness.

"Racist Mother" was posted by on Monday, April 18th 2005. This post is categorized Shorts.

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