2. Chapter one: Suspicion
It was mid-summer in Lindon. Elrond and Elros were approaching their fiftieth begetting day. Many Elves were gathered in Lindon for the summer solstice celebration. Among them would be Oropher and his son Thranduil. Thranduil had just turned twenty-five, two months ago. The twins had befriended him twenty years ago and took it upon themselves to look after him whenever he came to Lindon.
The day after the arrival of the guests Elrond and Elros were swimming in a near by pond. The pond was in a shaded area and the breeze coming off the water was cooling.
Thranduil was sent to the pond to join Elrond and Elros, while his father met with the other Elf Lords and spoke of important matters. Before Thranduil left Oropher took him aside and warned him that if he took off his shirt or let anyone even glimpse the marks on his back the consequences would be dire. He then handed the elfling a book and suggested he read it in the shade of a tree.
Glorfindel who had returned from the Halls of Mandos two years prior and was readjusting to life, was given the task of seeing to it Thranduil found the pond safely. Glorfindel had been reembodied two only two years and found the elfling’s questions mind boggling.
“Why don’t you ask your Adar?” asked Glorfindel.
“Ada doesn’t like it when I ask questions, he gets angry,” said the elfling. “You’re not angry are you?”
Glorfindel smiled gently at the elfling, “Nay, I’m not angry with you, Pen-neth. You do not ask questions that would merit anger. I only regret that I cannot answer them at the moment.”
“Ok,” said Thranduil as he hugged the older and taller elf around the waist.
Something about Thranduil’s behavior seemed out of place. He wasn’t acting like a normal elfling his age should. Glorfindel decided to take his suspicions to Gil-Galad. By this time they had reached the pond. Glorfindel spoke to the twins in Quenyan, which Thranduil did not understand yet.
“King Oropher is discussing important matters with Gil-Galad, Lady Galadriel and Lord Celeborn, Would you two watch Thranduil?” said Glorfindel. He did not use Gil-Galad’s title as High King with the twins because they saw him as a father and Glorfindel saw him as a friend. Then he added. “Watch him closely; there is something odd about his behavior. I think someone has been mistreating him. I will go and report my suspicions to Gil-Galad as soon as I can.”
“Of course not,” Elros replied using the same language.
“Thranduil, come and join us,” said Elrond in Thranduil’s native Sindaran.
“N-no thank you,” said Thranduil. “I’d rather read.”
“Alright, but don’t go far,” said Elrond. “We’re supposed to keep an eye on you.”
This behavior struck both Glorfindel and the twins as odd. Glorfindel went to speak with Gil-Galad. Elrond and Elros went back to swimming while keeping an eye on the younger elfling they were supposed to watch. Elrond knew something was bothering him. Though he was still fifty years from his majority he had already reached physical maturity and was developing healer’s intuition.
“Come in Thranduil,” said Elros as he splashed his brother. “The water’s fine.”
“N-no thank you,” said Thranduil, not wanting them to see the scars and bruises on his back.
Elros gave Elrond a worried look.
“He’s hiding something,” said Elrond to Elros mentally. Elves who shared a close bond such as siblings, parents, children or spouses did not need words to communicate. The fact that they were identical twins intensified this bond. “I’ve never seen him this shy or hesitant unless adults were around.”
“I think you’re right,” Elros replied. “He looks like he wants to but is afraid to.”
Thranduil sat under the shade of a nearby tree, reading a book on the early days of the first age. He wished he could join them, but was afraid of what Oropher.
“Something isn’t right,” Elros continued, “But I don’t know what?”
“I think I know,” said Elrond remembering an incident eleven years ago. “Remember the time he got honey all over his shirt and he wouldn’t let us help him change or even be in the room while he struggled to change his shirt.”
This made sense to both of them, as they only wore their leggings. The twins suggested that Thranduil come in with his shirt on, just remove his tunic and shoes. Thranduil agreed to this and was soon in the pond with the twins. Thranduil had never been swimming before and could only go into the deeper parts of the pond when supported by Elrond or Elros.
“I hate being short,” he said.
“Don’t be in such a hurry to grow up, little one,” said Elrond. “When you’re grown you’ll miss being held like this.
“Did your Ada hold you when you were little?” asked Thranduil.
“He did,” said Elros. “Doesn’t your Ada hold you?”
Thranduil shook his head no. “Only you two and my nanny have ever picked my up. Ada made her leave. He said that I was too old to be picked up or to have a nanny.”
“Well you are started to get to heavy to be picked up,” said Elrond. “But I don’t know about too old to be held. Lady Galadriel and Gil-Galad still hug Elros and me.”
“Your Ada used to hug your Nana before she left,” said Elros. “I bet he misses being held by her and doesn’t want to admit it.”
“Ada said that I made Nana go away,” said Thranduil.
“I’d like to make your Ada go away,” thought Elrond, beginning to think that Oropher was the one mistreating Thranduil.
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.