Goodness gracious me. Something, dear friends, must be wrong with my head. There have been days to spend in ponderings and contemplation, days to light upon the men of fiction who have strolled off with my heart in tow. And yet, for all that my mind would ruminate on these characters and their respective qualities, the strands of thoughts melt. It’s like chewing gum only to find that one’s gum is candy and has already dissolved.
This ought not be. I must have a serious problem with memory. My ill-regulated memory, as that great detective might say, has finally gone on strike altogether. Maybe something’s trying to tell me somebody…
Perhaps I need someone with great power: someone who could draw me out of my hole of forgetfulness with laughter and song as he draws Frodo and company from the Barrow-Downs (no knives needed here!); someone who “sets ringing with his singing all the fields and lanes,” and delights in beautiful things; one who can command the very trees but is not swayed by any temptation to greater power.
Someone rather like Tom Bombadil, with his golden boots and his flowers for the River’s Daughter and his enigmatic role in Middle Earth, so cryptic that the movies left him out to go somewhere else. These are the sorts of things that make my heart flutter a bit.
But since Tom is the Eldest and the Master, he may be a bit much, even for a Muse. And so my thoughts turn to a fellow who is sturdy and strong, an able cook, and an elf-friend. He is the exemplar of loyal, loving devotion to one’s master. He is the hero who carries on through the darkest places, no matter the burden and despite all temptations. He is the poet who finds consolation in stories and the hope of what tales may be. And when evil has been beaten back, Samwise the Stouthearted journeys back to the friends, family, and homeland he defended so courageously. He does not grow restless, but puts down his roots and plants his trees and guards the history of the War of the Ring.
In short, certainly a figure worthy of all the affection my heart gives him…though his fictitiousness might be a problem…to say nothing of his height. Not that I’d swoon over any man solely on account of his height. Hardly. …but if I did, it’d be over Julian Delphiki – better known, perhaps, as Bean.
That might be the most crushlike of these book crushes, because I cannot explain what it is about Bean that draws me to him. His intelligence is without bounds, his memory eidetic, his wit cutting, and his understanding of the world around him in all ways solid. Perhaps that attracts me because, despite all the evidence of reality, I hope that someone with a very fast mind could understand the actions of those around him. Or perhaps his intelligence creates the illusion that he can protect those he loves, though no lover or parent can keep the world out or death at bay – not the death of others, nor their own.
Beyond all reason, Bean delights me because of his weaknesses. That is, insofar as he is vulnerable, it is because he is a human who loves. It may have taken him years to learn it, and it really may not sound like much, but that is what makes Bean hard to resist.