How am I? Yeah, I’m fine. Just keeping busy slaying demons, deciphering ancient prophecies about how to defeat the Dark Lord, and trying to keep my on-again-off-again relationship alive with the blacksmith’s daughter. Actually, now that I think about it, I’m exhausted from battling demons. But not the physical sort, more like my inner demons, you know?

I haven’t really stopped to think about this before, but yeah, things are pretty full-on for me. It’s not that I’m opposed to being the chosen one. I guess I just think it would be good for my headspace if I weren’t always feverishly pursuing my destiny.

I’m genuinely grateful for how the story is unfolding. I’ve got a humble beginnings backstory, rugged good looks that I’m unaware of, loyal traveling companions, a mysterious mentor, and a totally rockin’ magic fire sword. My story is shaping up to be a decent fantasy epic. But now that I pause and reflect, what this story doesn’t have is a hero at the top of his game.

I hope I’m not coming off as the reluctant hero trope. I don’t want to complain or be seen as the stereotypical whiny farmboy slowly turning into the savior of the world who doesn’t yet understand the weight of his responsibilities and power.

Wow, talking through this is therapeutic. Opening up like this is a really positive step for me. I’ve focused my time on understanding who the prophecies say I am, but I feel like I don’t have the time to understand who I think I am.

In the last chapter alone, I was chased by a horde of half-human, half-animal servants of the Dark Lord, traversed the dreaded snowcapped Mountains of Mareund, betrayed by someone I thought was a friend, toppled the thousand-year rule of the House of Haltedor, found out that the people I thought were my parents aren’t my real parents, awakened my sorcery skills, had my excruciating death foreshadowed, and got tangled in a love triangle between my on-again-off-again girlfriend and the Elven Princess.

Thanks for giving me the space to be vulnerable and talk this out. I’m the one that bears the burdens of the whole world, but who bears mine? I’ve been so absorbed in bringing peace to the world that I haven’t been nurturing my inner peace.

As sure as dragons exist, I promise to submit to the sacred lore and fulfill the prophecies. But before that, I’d love a little bit of me time. You know I’m not one of those heiress types. The ones who, after a big day of socializing in the court, go and pamper themselves, saying things like “totally needed this,” or “been working like so hard so like thought I’d treat myself,” or “bring me that hot servant so I can eat dinner off his body, bed him, and then watch him in a fight to the death with my half-sister’s hot — but not as hot as mine — servant.”

I’d really appreciate a chapter, even just a few pages, not relentlessly chasing my destiny. As sure as a dwarf has a beard, I’d settle for just one paragraph at this stage.

Perhaps I could take a leisurely stroll through rolling fields without an assassin lying in wait. Or I could have an afternoon to lose myself in a good book without it holding ancient script about how failing to defeat the Dark Lord will doom all races for eternity. Possibly I could journey to a town celebrating its annual harvest festival, enjoy a hearty tavern meal by a warm hearth and spend the night with a barmaid that wants to rip off my tunic rather than my head.

Whoa, I guess I had more pent-up than I realized. Thank you so much for listening. I found this very cathartic. This is the first good omen I’ve had in a while. Tonight I’ll make a sacrifice in your honor.

What’s that? Oh. When you asked me how I was, you just meant it as a pleasantry. Ha ha, yeah, no worries. Ignore everything I just said. I’m good.