Mary Sue Challenge

And In These Days

4. Chapter 4: Off the Road 2

   
IV.

So confused, so blurred, poor child indeed, Cufinlin had the confession he wanted, and now sympathy was on his face. His own tears had fallen watching this proud lord of the Noldor, so like his haughty sire turn first to wonder, to anger, then to this grief stricken child. There was something very troublesome in all this. Grown Celebrimbor might be, a living monument of the blood of Finwe and Feanor, but the traces of her sister remained from the eyes to the sensitive mouth. The child was innocent. She followed Curufin alone, she did not even know that her son was with her husband. She had thought that he was still at the foot of Taniquetil with her father’s kin. For that perhaps, he played a greater part than he cared to admit even on his self-imposed exile.

**

A terrible puzzlement, confounded, burning pangs of the heart, Celebrimbor never really felt the palpitations of his fea before. Crumbled, broken battlements and desert of ice he had seen in mind’s eye once long ago, a nightmare that Curufin comforted with trembling hands now attacked the composite with a triple violence.

He wept. Those tears, were they signs of weakness or illusion?

When had the music slowed?

Through some vague sense of propriety and reality part of his mind retained, Celebrimbor was aware that he was not alone.

Still not looking up, his whole face felt aflame with shame and need to soothe an aching loneliness that surged up inside him; but Narvi was faraway and he doubted that the dwarves would appreciate an indulgence into the particulars of his childish emotions. To them, he had never appeared as one who would. It might, perhaps, widen the rift of contempt rather than sealing it with trust.

“I am tired, and I wish to go home.” He said, and so weary was his voice that it came out almost drowned by soft notes plucked in the background, “Forgive me, I am not myself tonight. For ever had I learned otherwise till now, and I had always been grieved where the Helcaraxe is concerned, to think that my father was henceforth sundered from his people forever. Though I still do not understand, Lord Culfinlin of Maldor, why do you presume my identity as you presume Curufin’s guilt in your late sister’s demise? We are not the same.”

Culfinlin barely contained his anger and his perplexity. But Galadhwen answered before he spoke. He huffed and went back to his seat in brisk steps.

“Would you not stay for the festivities then, perhaps matters of levity would appease you better than a tramp through the forest at twilight?”

“I would,” Celebrimbor said, surprised at himself, “It would be a pleasure to break fast with a rare company.”

“That is well then,” Galadhwen said, and once again the music and the dance resumed as Celebrimbor stood up to find a different seat, the tears dried and furtively wiped away.

**
His mother’s brother was not regarding him kindly, but he had no thoughts for him now. Merrily indeed, he ate, laughed, conversed, and was invited to sit at the left side of the queen, for the king would have naught of him it appeared.

Other voices were around theirs when she spoke, but Celebrimbor found it intriguing that no one appeared to hear what they were saying, and no one was neglected.

“My oldest daughter,” the queen said, her gaze demanding attention, “She I desire to be fostered in a city of the Noldor, for they had become numerous of late and it would be better for all, so the Culfinlin and I thought, that one of our children learns the ways of the Returned, as to better prepare for the future.”

She looked to him, questioning, and Celebrimbor nodded in assent though he thought the word “numerous” a bit crude, if not insulting.

“A high sentiment,” He said, “Though I myself condone it, I cannot answer for all, and it is shameful to consider the difficulties that may arise out of small misunderstandings.”

The queen took a bite of a small, orange fruit, her thin lips curved up gracefully, if slightly predatorily, revealing small, white teeth, “Be rest assured, my Lord. Long ago, she was brought to Nargothrond and dwelt there. The Lord Orodreth had be kind to her yet times have become more dangerous of late as paths becomes hostile with Darkenss’ forces,” She paused, “We desire instead, Lord Celebrimbor, for she to have a place in Eregion.”

Celebrimbor swirled the goblet in his hand and did not answer immediately. The wine, this time red, was shocked into many little ripples by the movement.

“And for which the Wood of Maldor would not come forth.”

He stared at the pulsating liquid for a little while. This was then the reason she deigned to speak with him in the first place. High proud and mysterious, Celegorm had lived with the Avari for a while while out looking for new, and had brought home many strange and disturbing tales. When asked for a story, he had showed Celebrimbor a knobbly bracelet dipped in gold that was, Celegorm said, elven knuckle bones, before proceeding into terrible tale. There were nightmares and Curufin chided his brother for scaring his son, and for offering “wild speculations from one of little perception”.

Celebrimbor lifted his cup, the hard rim barely touched flesh, and the corners of his mouth curled up into a slight smile at the memory, for he had his father to himself for many days after that. The wording of her phrases had not escaped him. “Brought”, not sent, though the circumstances of the events eluded him. Orodreth, that sly fellow, he had a hostage, no wonder his woods were always so well guarded and no orc raids ever assailed. A fair exchange perhaps, for the Avari was always thirsty for something, yet they were ruled by honour. Now their intention were clear, foster the child, and the border shall be guarded as Orodreth was; he had nothing to fear.

The wine was dark and heady, and he felt the first twinges of an inevitable stymied dream.

It pained him knowing that his kinsmen may have took better care of a Moriquendi than a child of their lord. Probably ate better too, he thought bitterly as he gazed down at his own plate and thought it appeared less appetising than he first supposed. Rosy slices of meat cooked with whole cloves of garlic, young green beans, and a golden potato and onion in a fresh sauce, rich forest fare indeed!

At Celebrimbor’s hesitancy, Galadhwen added casually, “Be assured your decision would not be required till at a later date as she could not leave for a few years yet.”

Celebrimbor nearly choked swallowing. With difficulty, he fought back a cough.

There was already a decision then! His was not required, merely a token agreement. Celebrimbor wondered who among his court, or the Noldorin court in general had allowed this. The very audacity shook him, and he was angry. They do not regard him as a proper lord yet then.

The collar of his tunic chocked him, everything seemed too bright, too loud, and he became hot and bothered from the increasingly thumping music.

Perhaps it was the wine, or perhaps, an excess of emotions.

“Rain.” Someone said beside him, yet that only an occasional drop glistened off the branches onto people’s clothes, making them gleam with many small lights.

His head had begun to hurt from having realized that the forest was contained after all and not so away from the stones he had escaped from. He was still under a roof. Ignoring the normal propriety that governed such behaviours, his gaze lifted from the talking faces and noticed that the leaves were interwoven forming a natural canopy.

The dancing had begun again, and his hosts had left him to his brooding thoughts. Galadhwen and Culfinlin were twirling gracefully amidst a circle of dancers, their movements neat and fast, too swift for a dizzying head.

Celebrimbor left his seat and stood a bit lingeringly near a sentry, he supposed, from the lack of design on the weaponry. So from a leafy gate that seemed oddly flimsy to his builder’s eye, he watched them dance and laugh and eat. For a moment, he relished this joy without tragedy. He was the youngest in his city after all, and had seen nothing of true happiness. The sight in front of him seemed so detached from what he knew of the Avari, and what he knew of Endore that all conflicting thoughts fled and he was left with an odd sense of complacency for the moment.

He was startled by a voice. He wanted to leave, yes? He heard his name announced and yet few turned. Culfinlin appeared determined not to speak with him, though Celebrimbor felt keenly his gaze upon his person.

He took leave though they told him that the forest paths were unsafe at night. Celebrimbor prevailed at length, as he saw that they were eager to get back to their merriment and no more entertain a troubling visitor. His introducer, Kindil, was bid to show him the way back.

Celebrimbor watched the hostile marchwarden warily; for he was still grim of face while others were of mirth and that seemed strange With a practiced movement, the marchwarden unwound a crystal from its place and nested it within a light lantern of white wood.

He would not need to be blindfolded this time, Celebrimbor was informed, and a part of him sneered while the other sighed relief, though truly, it does make much difference, unused to the dimness, his bright eyes saw only vague shadowed forms. The clouds have covered over Tilion’s chariot and all the forest was dark, and the damp air hung more oppressively than ever. Though the wind, strangely, was fiercely biting.

Once, he almost fell on a slippery mass, but an arm held him then disappeared with alarming speed when he regained his balance.

The figure of his guide melted into the darkness as he walked, there were no subtle luminance about him that was usual for the Calaquendi, only the light of the lantern crystal shone a path through the knotted roots and piles of leaves. They arrived at the pool where Celebrimbor had so rudely spied upon their people. Of course, they were all gone now.

“I can find my way now, thank you.” Celebrimbor said, halting the moving, hovering, light in front of him.

Vaguely, he saw Kindil bowed and disappeared into the shadows.

The light was better here, for the sky had cleared, and the moon was broken into little pieces scattered on the pool. Taking a depth breath, Celebrimbor stepped into that clearing. He had no desire to go home tonight, for he would surely suffocate, and he considered the pool very beautiful when he first looked upon it.

The sharp, cool air that assailed his lungs cleared his head for a moment, till he thought that all the strange revelations and people were but another dream. The forest was silent, other than a fey bird that called from time to time. He ceased moving, but there was only the babbling of the stream. It was as if he had come back from a product of fevered thoughts, and so, the memories of high words and overwrought grief did not disturb him, for they must be false.

The stream that fed the river was alluring in the moonlight, a silver liquid vein carving a shining road into the dark. Wondering, Celebrimbor followed the stream till within his sight was another, standing by the water, ready to leap.

By the dim twilight, the starlight and evening star seemed to cast down a light especially for Celebrimbor’s eyes, for even while he could not see his own fingers when he held them in front of himself, he saw slender arms of the silhouette come close at an invisible point in the air.

The shadow dived, swam, floated, then drifted past him, a current dragging it down. Celebrimbor jumped into the river himself and went after it.

A vortex was in the water, marking a strange boundary, he stood on one side of it, and held ground, hands reached for what he thought may be nothing at all.

Somehow, in the darkness and coldness, he found it, held it, and managed to find step-like formations in the riverbed to support them both. His feet gravitated up the steps with a severity and strength that a part of him became apprehensive without knowing why.

The shadow did not splutter though it was warm and real. It stood proud and faced him when he finally released her from his arms, standing.

“Greetings Lord Celebrimbor. I am Elefinihim daughter of Galadhwen and Bragolcoron.” It said in a clear voice.

The dramatic Tilion chose at that moment to fully unveil itself, and Celebrimbor saw her.

Wind drunken cheeks with shadow mess for meat, dark hair and dark eyes, far darker than her mother's, Elefinihim daughter of Galadhwen and Bragolcoron bore little resemblance to her mother or any other corporeal beings, but rather reminded Celebrimbor strongly of waiting for the first autumn rain. She seemed as a ghost from his past, so alien and unfamiliar, yet so, undeniably alive.

So now he looked at her, mumbled his own name, and thought himself younger, with indefinable years ahead and the strange, stumbling memories in his head anchored under the weight of Curufin's presence. The anchor, lost, had been found again in the form of Eregion, seemingly now faraway from the depth of this strange wood. Impulsively, he reached out a finger and traced a cheek, gleaming with pearls of water.

This must have been what it feels like to touch the surface of an almost forgotten dream, so cool and smooth it was beneath his fingers.

“Ele.” He said, though to behold what he did not know.

She tilted her head and evaded his fingers, yet her eyes were smiling. He did not pursue it. "Lord Celebrimbor?" She said, and stepped lightly away.

"You had a leaf in your hair." He replied, somehow producing a leaf from his empty hands. Looking at her, he thought her Noldorin fair other than the eyes that glittered like the night sky.

She walked forward and took the leaf before suddenly kissing his fingertips. He withdrew his hand, burned with the sudden heat of her lips.

Tears mixed with water trailed down her cheeks.

"Lady Elefinihim?"

"Thank you, thank you, I could not find it and thought it lost! A thousand gratitude to you Lord Celebrimbor," She looked at his bewildered face, than said more softly, "It is the last parting gift from my father. It is precious to me and yet I could not find it this whole day. Searching, I could not find it and had but given up..."

There was something disappointing in that confession, a certain lack of something, coming short of an expectation, "Is this why you sought to dive into the river even though the currents may be raging and rocks abound?"

She held the leaf out to him, a thin leaf of beaten gold, with mithril as veins, "I swim well, Lord Celebrimbor, and the River knows me. It's my last memory of the father who was seldom home. The rest, they had all been lost through war and ill-chance."

“Though I still thank you, for the easterlies clashes too often with the river now. I could not live knowing that it is lost.”

"And yet you misplaced something you treasured above all things." Celebrimbor replied, hands spasmodically clenching and unclenching at his side. To think, he had nearly drowned for little reason! An odd anger heaved within him. He expected to have grasped a shade! And not a being whose sentiment was for a small thing, neither richly nor well made, that she would go to Mandos for it. Those who took their own life so lightly, and for so replaceable a reason, especially judging by a smith’s eye, how dangerous they must be to others, he thought, and was this how all Avari thought? How dangerous on other matters then..he certainly do not have this fault of seeking to preserve an imperfect past.

“I do not believe..” She said.

“Believe…”

“That any past is imperfect. Above all things, shrewdly said," Dark eyes glinted dangerously and the hands that held the leaf closed, hiding it from his sight, "You would not say that I hold it above all people as well. But do you not hold something dear, as a sentimental reminder, for pure passions’ or memory’s sake? Am I a hellion, a coarse Avari then, for seeking to pursue the material?"

The irony of the tone did not escape him.

"The sentimental has no hold on me, it only destroys till one's wrecked by utter despair." Celebrimbor said smoothly, though startled at how her non-sequitur travelled along his own thoughts, “All things remembered, not yet come, with imperfection are those truly worth delving for. There then, exists a freedom to shape and fashion according to will, till truest truth of beauty, comes across as a crystal with lights unblemished, more than material. It would be a jewel then. I would have no souvenir to remind it of a faulty design or some sorrow but for a chance in time.”

“That is smith talk,” She said, “But how would you ensure that it would not happen again?”

“To understand the presence of a past accomplishment, true or imagined, is to allow memory and mind to work for the ideal while the self remains fundamentally sound.”

Elefinihim frowned. So I am unsound? And soundness is defined by stagnancy?

“And what of the moment?” She asked, undeterred.

“What of it?”

“Do you think of it less than the past or the future for you cannot shape it.”

“The moment is to be possessed by the past and the future. Dreams and history commingled.”

Of all the reactions, he did not expect her to be so mirthful as to dance suddenly, an arm outstretched toward the stars. He leapt back in alarm.

“What imagination for life!” She exclaimed to the sky or him he could not tell; she then turned toward him, “And you, a politician of the Noldor?” She was smiling, but Celebrimbor could not detect mockery in her tone.

“And you?” He asked.

“I live upon the periphery of my dreams and memories. As we must, in these darker days. But, as you realize,” She tugged at a dark braid, ineffectual in untangling it, “I am willing to dive it, though you might not approve.” She added, “But as it is mine…”

"Then it is yours,” Celebrimbor continued, mollified by this confession, “As I have mine, though they manifest differently. It is best that we seek to grasp the intangible ideals, and perchance, die trying. That then, is a life truly lived."

The movement of her hands upon her hair paused, and a shadow flitted past her face.

"It is not common for the Eldar to speak of mortality." She said wistfully, “Even among we who oft seen it ever ere you came.” Her thumb traced the leaf in her hand.

The trees rustled around them yet the air seemed to have suddenly grown sombre, and the discrimination between “I”, “you”, “we” filled his voice with bitterness.

"Aye, but I am of the Noldor, and my own father and mother, as being forcefully reminded to me by Lord Culfinlin, succumbed to it."

“You have meet Lord Culfinlin?”

“Aye.” Celebrimbor sighed.

She looked at him, black met blue, “I’m sorry.” She said, eyes cast down, suddenly demure.

“Sorry?”

“He is not a man easy to speak with.” She said.

Celebrimbor could have either laughed or wept, if not for the sudden inability to do so, a chill went through him instead.

”Perhaps this conversation should continue elsewhere, you are shivering.” She remarked.

He noticed that he was.

“Come, I will lead you to a place so that we can be warm again.”

She held out her hand, obviously expecting him to hold it. He hesitated.

“Come,” She said, laughing, “I am not so brilliant as the golodh to glow like some creature of the night to allure a poor prey, and I would not wish my saviour snared by mischievous trees and veins.”

So he followed her and she led him.

Into the depths of the woods she led him, back, and yet not so, for the night became twilight, a dark grey mantle strewn with diamonds and threaded with wisps of indigo. She ran with him into the woods, and her tread was silent and swift, faster than his so that he felt being pulled.

“Why are we hurrying?” He asked.

“Avoiding trackers.” She said, though which trackers she did not say.

The trees changed around them, knottier, but lighter in colour, Elefinihim slowed gradually. From some ways off, even Celebrimbor could see someone was there, leaning almost lethargically against the trunk of a tree. He made no movement to approach them.

Celebrimbor was conscious that a blast of cold wind touched his right hand where water droplets still clung. Elefinihim had let go of her hold.

“We missed you today.” The figure said. They could see him now, the march warden, Kindil, the wreath of flowers different, and so pale they shone like cold metal. His face was no longer grim, rather, relaxed, almost disdainful.

She shrugged, almost going past him. “I went for a while and sang.” She waved a hand at Celebrimbor who lingered behind, debating whether he should leave these fey people to themselves. But then he remembered he did not know the way out.

“But you left without telling anyone,” Kindil glanced at their wet clothes, standing straight till he almost blocked her way, “What did you try to find this time?”

Elefinihim answered him in their own dialect. Colour raised in Kindil’s face than abruptly abated. Whatever they were discussing seemed an old topic that bored Elefinihim, and excited Kindil.

“As long as you found it.” Kindil said hotly afterwards, reverting back to Sindarin and therefore looking at Celebrimbor pointedly though his words were directed differently, “But given the volatile weather conditions lately, I would find swimming unsafe. Your mother would not be pleased.”

“You are not me, and what my mother thinks of me is not of your concern.”

Kindil looked like he had something to say but suddenly an amused expression came into his face, “We will come to an end with this argument Elefin.” He said, “One day.”

“We won’t.” She said, raising a haughty eyebrow, pulling at Celebrimbor again. There was a yellow light beyond a ring of trees it seemed.

“Have you broke fast then?” Kindil asked.

“Not yet.”

“I shall bring you food, and may it be better cheer to your spirit than some cold stones.”

“Thank you.”

“I take leave, milady.” Kindil bowed, and disappeared, leaving an impatient Elefinihim and a surprised Celebrimbor.

“I did not know he followed me.” He remarked after a while as they entered a copse where a fire with odd light was roaring. The flames were very yellow, and far too bright to be natural. Blankets and pillows took their place near the fire, and there was an overlay of sundry objects from comb to knives to a half-carved wooden figure.

“He wasn’t. He was trying to find me.” She sighed, and sat down on a worn log beside the fire, resuming her struggle with her hair, “Forgive me for being a poor host, from one who seldom talks, Kindil’s strains the listener’s ears when he does.”

Celebrimbor nodded in sympathy, and handed her a comb that he found laying by his feet. He sat down beside her.

“This place…”

“My retreat, if you will, when I cannot sleep, or desire no company.”

He did not remark that he was here.

They threw off their overtunics and lay it on one of the stones by the firepit to dry. Celebrimbor appreciated the view of her bare arms, slightly taut with muscle and her gracefully curved neck.

Sitting in profile, he thought her especially beautiful. And unconsciously, he picked up a piece of wood and began to whittle her image onto it.

The enclosed area shut out the winds, and other than the shadows that lurked beyond the reach of the fire, it would be a great room with stars for roof.

“Helluin,” Elefinihim said, breaking Celebrimbor’s focus where a blush immediately mounted his cheeks, “My father said he saw it first before all other stars when he awoke, my mother beside him, her hair tickling his chin.”

“Cuivennen?” The half-finished figurine was carefully concealed under a blanket.

She nodded, but there was an ironical expression on her face.

“It kept him out of haunting the swallowing Great Dark, for he desired to reach the stars instead. He did not believe that the brightest lights are only visible during the darkest nights like some sought. He sought for the twilight of woods instead, for the surface of streams reflecting the stars, mingled with the images of the shoots of young leaves. Yet he did not become Cirdan’s people, he followed the river out of curiosity and gradually came here. Here he fought the shadows with those who followed him. They heard neither Nahar nor Tulkas, nor the words of your kings for from them we had long been sundered. They would not leave the Waters, and we were lief and fain to explore.” Elefinhim looked at him, and Celebrimbor was suddenly abashed, realizing the life in Ennor before the Noldor came. Over the sea, over the ice, from Valinor they came and fancied their own end greater than others, their own ambition more glorious, more magnificent.

“I was born in this forest,” She said ruthfully, “By fate a Moriquendi, as some calls us; Lord Celebrimbor, but would you tell me of Valinor, the Blessed Realm?”

Kindil came back again, and this time, left them without a word, his figure could have been a passing flicker of the flames.

He brought them marinated mushrooms, plates of white bread, rosemary flavoured loin of pork spiked with slivers of truffle, cheese, speckled with herbs and shiny with oil and a bottle of young wine, crisp and spicy.

Celebrimbor, now that his head cleared, wondered where did all these food came from?

“Some the forest gives to us, others we trade.” Elefinihim answered before he asked.

“Tis a secret, Lord Celebrimbor, Nanyor and Silvan trade routes, sometimes the Falathrim, and kingdoms of Bereliand as well. We had years to survive,” She smiled triumphantly at him, “And we did. What of Valinor? Lord Culfinlin would not speak of it.”

Celebrimbor did not remember much of Valinor, nonetheless, he did not wish to disappoint her, and so told her what he remembered, the fragments and pieces of a past that is half dream, half from his father’s stories. He told her of the crystal citadel of Tirion, of the majesty of Finwe’s palace, the House of Feanor and Nerdanel, the most beautiful on Eldamar, and of the gleaming tower of pearls and the waves of the sea. He mimicked the flutes of the Teleri upon a folded leaf, and told her of the swanships, graceful vessels of the sea.

“I wish I could see them,” She said, and Celebrimbor realized her eyes were not black as he first supposed, but a deep brown with a ring of black, “What does the sea look like?”

The fire did not crackle. It’s earth-fire she said, a natural vent from the ground, and the flames seemed so steady at times that Celebrimbor fancied that it went still, and were a broken ruin of a pillar of light.

Celebrimbor had no clear recollection of the sea, all he remembered was a swaying, almost gyring motion, and screams, loud and piercing.

“It is like the wind,” He answered, uncertain, “Wind in water form, always moving, crest to trough, there are tides for water as there are undulating winds,” He employed a simile he had been taught, “The ripples of the treetops of a forest though infinitely wider.”

The earth shook with a sound.

“Though you crossed it, though you cannot find your way out of these woods,” An indignant look came into his face, but she pressed her fingers to his mouth, he considered tasting it, “No matter,” She said laughingly, removing them, “What does it sound like?” She asked.

Celebrimbor confessed ignorance, and though her face seemed distressed for a moment, she asked about his city, and this he spoke and length, from the width of the foundation blocks, to the origin of the tapestry that hung in his room, believed to be one of the only works of Miriel Serinde in Middle Earth.

For every name, she wanted a translation, “Oste-I-Idhil,” she said, “a fortress then.”

And earth shook again. Something was rumbling in the afar, and within.

His hands were dry by now, and so were his clothes. “I did not plan for it to be one.”

She had a wry expression on his face, “It is inevitable, milord, to not establish bastions in these times. Many others would envy you. Including Lord Culfinlin.”

There was a rhythm, and Celebrimbor recognized the sound from beating upon a hollow surface.

“Perhaps.” He said, then stared gloomily into the flames, and told her of his entrance to the wood of the Maldor while the drumming became louder, “I want to go home.” He said for the second time that night, feeling every inch a child instead a grown lord of the Noldor in the company of a lady.

She said, “I cannot lead you back home yet. A thing is out tonight. It is only the darkness that confuses the sense, comes the morrow, the sun will show you the path out.”

“What thing? And how do you know?”

“Hearken to the drums, Celebrimbor, the alarm from the Khazad, something ill’s afoot. These borders are guarded, and so they have been for hundreds of years. You will be safe here. There are blankets and bedrolls enough here for comfort.”

“Safe?” Are you leaving me? He wanted to say.

“Safe, and form requests me to talk with mother.” And other people I do not wish to see. “Till we meet again,” Said she, “The years pass more quickly than we can know, Celebrimbor of Eregion, a star upon our meeting.”

“Indeed they do,” He replied a bit despondently, but oh Ele..“Farewell.,” Then added, “If you do not wish to leave, none would be able to gainsay you, and truth be told, I very much wish you would stay with me.”

And thereupon, he leaned down slightly and their faces brushing past each other so warm mouths touched, petals to petals blown caress.

It seemed so strangely fantastical, he thought in that instant, for her to be so near him that he could feel their breaths mingling against his face, and her lips to be against his, tasting faintly of roses. Eyes wondered at eyes, fire and star within them, and time paused for an eternity just like how it should be for fëar fated as long as Arda.

“Sleep, Celebrimbor.” She said, feather soft.

“You should know that I cannot sleep, not fully.” He said, disappointed.

“Poor child,” She said, “Then I shall sing you a lullaby for you to sleep. You missed my voice tonight, consider it a reparation for poor hospitality Lord Culfinlin offered you. It is customary that a guest be given a precious gift ere they leave. As I have nothing here, you can have a song. If you are willing.”

Amused, Celebrimbor watched as she arranged herself beside him till there were almost lying forehead to forehead.

“You don’t mind, do you?”

“No.” Celebrimbor answered, hypnotised by her expressions as she sang, and the voice that conjured up happier memories he never knew he had, and he thought he really saw Finwe upon his throne, and the streets of Tirion paved with crystals. But finally he thought of that passing brush of lips as Elefinihim lulled him to sleep. Celebrimbor’s eyelids closed over his eyes, once in many years. After a while, she placed a light kiss on them both.

“Telperinquar Curufinwion,” She murmured, “I never thought…”

**

Elefinihim:A joke on the name: it means, probably, “behold, cool hair(hair of cool)”! Elefin, therefore, means Behold, Hair!
Bragolcoron: sudden mound, sudden death
Culfinlin: gold, red hair gleam..son of Glorfindel…like father, like son..
What! I maintain they had truffles! And when we gave truffles, we have pigs and boars…it’s a forest…
Ele: ancient Elvish for “Behold!”
Kindil: a mix of real Avarin with Sindarin…Faithful of Elves(I hope)

This is a work of fan fiction, written because the author has an abiding love for the works of J R R Tolkien. The characters, settings, places, and languages used in this work are the property of the Tolkien Estate, Tolkien Enterprises, and possibly New Line Cinema, except for certain original characters who belong to the author of the said work. The author will not receive any money or other remuneration for presenting the work on this archive site. The work is the intellectual property of the author, is available solely for the enjoyment of Henneth Annûn Story Archive readers, and may not be copied or redistributed by any means without the explicit written consent of the author.

   

In Challenges

Story Information

Author: Furius

Status: Beta

Completion: Work in Progress

Rating: General

Last Updated: 02/19/03

Original Post: 12/22/02

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